Vortex Viper HS LR vs. HST – Which is most ideal for long-range hunting?

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Vortex Viper HS LR vs. HST

At times hunting for game requires long range scopes with powerful zoom abilities. In this regards, we have the Vortex Viper HS LR and the HST. This review, examines why these two scopes are preferred for long range shots

A lot goes into getting the perfect shot. Certain variables like wind and distance have to be taken into account as you aim your rifle. Scopes act like hidden eyes whenever you go hunting for game. However, if you are not experienced with all the technicalities that come with scopes then identifying one can be quite challenging.

Vortex has been a global leader when it comes to developing high quality optics. This review, examines the Vortex Viper HS LR and HST.

What are the differences between the Vortex Viper HS LR and HST?

Specifications
Vortex Viper HS LR (4X-16X50)
Vortex Viper HST(6-24X50)
Magnification
4-16X
6-24X ( the magnification for the HST is quite impressive. The scope is longer and heavier than the HS LR)
Eye Relief
4”
4”
Field of view
27.4-7.4 feet/100 yards
17.8-5.1 feet/100 yards
Tube Size
30mm
30mm
Weight
21.4 oz.
22.6 oz.
Length
13.7”
15.5”
Max. Elevation Adjustment
75 MOA
65 MOA
Max. Windage Adjustment
50 MOA
65 MOA
Parallax setting
50 yards to ∞
50 yards to ∞
Availability

Vortex Viper HS LR vs. HST – How do they compare?

Turrets

The HS LR, HST and HS are almost similar in terms of construction but there is a huge difference in how they operate and range. The HS LR comes with a tall exposed turret that solves all your elevation adjustment problems that you could have suffered with the HS. This makes the ideal scope for long range shooting. The downside is you may cause some harm to this turret but the likelihood of this happening is also slim. The HS LR also comes with a unique FFP reticle that helps you hold for both Windage and elevation while at any magnification. The HST comes with a hashmark based second focal plane reticle (VMR-1)which you can use for extended ranges. The Windage and elevation turrets are also exposed and are designed for repeatable finger adjustable clicks. Both scopes come with CRS zero stop that gives you the ability to return to zero capability after you have dialed temporary elevation. The key difference here is the design of turrets with the HS LR being more exposed for long range shooting.

Design

Both Scopes feature a 30mm diameter tube for maximum internal strength. The scopes are made from aircraft grade aluminum and have O-ring seals for protection against moisture and dust. The scopes are argon purged to make them fog proof and the HS LR is XR fully multi-coated to ensure maximum light transmission. The main difference when it comes to the construction is that the HSR is slightly heavier at 22.6 oz. compared to the HS LR 21.4 oz. It is also slightly longer than the HS LR.

Vortex Viper HS LR vs. HST – A Comparison Overview

Vortex Viper HS LR – Overview

The LR on this scope stands for “long range” and it is used to describe the scopes effective shooting at distances that are affected more by wind drift and bullet drop. Some outstanding designs on the scope include an exposed target style elevation turret and a forgiving eye box with generous eye relief. The basic design of the scope is aircraft grade aluminum that helps increase Windage while being ideal for optimal adjustments.

The HS LR is a single piece scope made from aircraft grade aluminum. It comes with O-rings that ensure it is waterproof and free from dust and other elements. Argon pugging ensures your scope is fogproof. The tube size is the standard 30mm that provides maximum strength during shots.

The Lens are XR® fully multi-coated that this ensures you get maximum light transmission. You have a second focal plane reticle that is used for wind drift correction, estimate range and holdover. Inside the scope you will find some nice features like CRS zero stop, precision glide erector system and precision force spring system. The dead-hold BDC reticle is there to ensure that you eliminate any guesswork that comes from Windage corrections and holdover.

Pros

  • Effective at shooting at ranges where wind drift and bullet drop is vital
  • XR® Fully multi-coated for efficient light transmission
  • Second focal plane reticle
  • Aircraft grade aluminum body construction
  • CRS zero stop

Cons

  • The exposed turrets can be entangled during movements

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Vortex Viper HST – Overview

For those who may not know the HST stands for “hunting shooting tactical” and this is sign that the scope is ideal for a wide range of shooting from hunting to long range. The first thing you notice about the scope is how sturdy it is. Made from aircraft grade aluminum this scope is versatile enough for maneuvers across the field. The tube is also argon purged and anodized black. This makes it both waterproof and fog proof. For enhanced lighting capabilities the HST also has XR coating.

The HST uses a magnification of 4X and you can use an adjustment focal ring that is located on the eyepiece to set the reticle closer to your eye. To give you better adjustment abilities when in a shooter position the HST also comes with a side focus parallax adjustment. This allows for a more forgiving eye box. The HST offers 4” of eye relief but the hashmark reticle is not illuminated and this may pose challenges for those shooting in low lighting conditions. We found the turrets both audible and reliable. You also get the option of MOA or MRAD adjustments.

The CRS zero stop is an innovative feature that allows you to return to zero after doing temporary corrections on the elevation.

Pros

  • Durable aircraft grade aluminum design
  • Side parallax knob
  • Reliable turret tracking
  • Great for big game hunting
  • 4” of eye relief
  • CRS zero stop allows you to go zero

Cons

  • Lacks illuminated reticle and the turrets are a bit large

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Verdict: So, which is better – Vortex Viper HS LR or HST?

Which one you go for will largely be determined by your hunting purposes. If you are looking for some long range shooting then the Vortex Viper HS LR is your ideal choice due to its tall exposed turrets that are ideal for elevation adjustments. If the need for long range shooting does not arise you can go with the HST which is not only a great scope but ideal for range shooting steel. You do get the addition of a VMR-1 reticle that acts as a hashmark based second focal reticle which works well for accurate holds in extended ranges.

FAQ

Where are the Vortex Viper HS scopes manufactured?

According to the series documentation the scopes are made in the Philippines. But, this does not diminish their overall performance. The scopes come with optimal lens clarity and are ideal for long range shooting.

What is the difference between the Viper PST and HST?

For one let us look at the weight – the PST is heavier at 28.1 oz. while the HST measures 20.8 oz. The HST uses a second focal plane reticle while the PST has a either a SFP or FFP reticle.

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