Leupold VX-1 Review: Read Before You Buy

leupold vx 1 review
Alfred Mendoza

Like many gun enthusiasts we know, you must wonder how the new Leupold VX-1 3-9x40mm will perform after so many upgrades and revisions when it acquired Redfield. In this Leupold VX-1 review, my team of experts will help you sort this out and let you know if this riflescope is still worth the buck or is there a better option?

Leupold VX-1 Scopes with a 3:1 zoom ratio is the most popular among Leupold scopes, and it’s no wonder. With Leupold’s Multicoat 4 for 92% light transmission, you can get pristine, crisp, crystal clear, and bright sight picture, even in low light conditions.

It lets the scope stay light and affordable but offers you the versatility you need to adapt to unexpected hunting scenarios, including the field of view and magnification. This riflescope delivers excellent performance with its different LR duplex reticle orientations of the Ballistics Aiming System.

The Leupold VX-1 3-9x40mm scope has a Variable Zoom Scope featuring legendary ruggedness and waterproofing that makes the Leupold scope durable and compact. It also has Leupold Ballistics Aiming System and a 1-inch main tube diameter that is lightweight and fits more legacy rings.
This riflescope features multiple aiming points for longer ranges and varying wind speeds. It also infinite power selector settings to match your rifle’s ballistics, best for long-range shooting of at least 100 yards or 150 yards.



Top Model Features


This review will discuss how its durability will provide a means for us to qualify this scope in the hallmark of top-grade rifle scopes. This scope features an O-ring sealing for complete waterproof integrity, tight enough to fit all details. Made with Leupold’s Proprietary nitrogen sealing process, which has become the industry standard for most rifle scope production, this rugged and waterproof riflescope is indeed durable and reliable. The VX-1 scope features a 2-piece aircraft aluminum grade called Nitrogen purged, which is specifically designed for heavy recoil and waterproof, shockproof, and fog proof.

For durable red dot sights, check out this Vortex Sparc 2 and Strikefire 2 comparison here

Lens & Coating

This scope boasts its lens clarity throughout the FOV in any condition because its optical surfaces are multicoated for reduced glare and authentic color transmission. It has a multi-coated four-lens system that delivers extreme clarity from edge to edge of the visual field, a bright sight picture, and outstanding contrast even in extreme low-light conditions. It has a significant advantage over the other rifle scopes like the Nikon P-308 that we also made a review of, which limitedly performs in normal light conditions only.

leupold vx-1 lens


Based on Leupold VX-1’s magnification power and objective lens diameter, it is available in four different objective diameter variants: the 2-7x33mm, 3-9x40mm, 3-9x50mm, and 4-12x40mm. If we focused its 3-9x magnification, its FOV at 100 yds would be 34.6 – 14.6. This is a versatile riflescope featuring a 3:1 zoom ratio erector system that is ideal for virtually any situation. It features a 1/4 MOA finger click adjustments for windage and elevation for absolute dependability over a lifetime of extreme use.

For other optics options, here’s our Vortex Sparc AR and Sparc 2 comparison

Focal Point

This scope uses a Second Focal Plane or SFP reticle with clear glass. Although it features chromatic aberrations that are well corrected, it is not as good as the VX-2 or the Vortex Diamondback.

With the higher end scopes, you will get extra 10-20 minutes during low light compared to the VX-1 since it has a smaller FOV. The VX-1 offers better eye relief and eye box, which can be used in higher caliber with safety. This scope also features a zoom ring that is firm and easy to use with a lockable focus ring rather than the fast focus.

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Leupold rifle scopes can be mounted on Leupold’s, Talley’s, or Aero Precision ultralight scope mount that you can purchase for a different price separately. It has a scope tube that is one inch in diameter, so you must always make sure to get one-inch rings of appropriate height and matching base type to make your scope last longer and save you time zeroing them. Here’s a quick tip to help you choose the best mount for your rifle scope—choose the lowest ring height that doesn’t obstruct other parts of your rifle for maximum accuracy.

leupold vx-1 mounting

Mass & Dimension

This rifle scope is one of the lightest 3-9x40mm variations of the VX-1 Leupold, which only weighs 11.2 ounces and is much lighter than a Vortex or a Nikon. This scope is suitable for long days of hiking, odd-angle shooting, or hunting and can also serve as the best scope for your kids.

With its top-quality matte black finish, camouflaging while out hunting for an extended period is plausible. Design-wise, this scope provides generous eye relief and looks very similar to the VX-2, a higher-end scope.

For other lightweights optics, here’s our review of the best red dot sights for Ruger Mark IV

Reticle Orientation

This scope uses three reticles called the FireDot Ballistic reticle, Fine Duplex reticle, and the Pig Plex reticle. The FireDot Ballistic reticle is illuminated and utilizes a 200 or 300 yard zero wide duplex with additional aiming points out to 500 to 600 yards range. In contrast, the LR Duplex reticle features the benefits of thicker and finer particles that make aiming in dark surroundings a lot easier due to the bright red Firedot that is adjustable with a button’s push. The Pig Plex duplex wide reticle is designed for hog hunting at about 200 or 300-yard zero and holdover points out to 600 yards range.

Leupold VX-1 - Is It Worth It?

Although Leupold VX-1 is a good enough rifle scope with its price, we still prefer the Vortex Optics Diamondback 4-12×40 Second Focal Plane Riflescope because it features better image quality, durability, and also full lifetime guarantee that rivals Leupold. It features the Dead-Hold BDC MOA reticle, ideal for a big game, predator/varmint, slug shotgun, and long-range applications.

Another plus for Vortex Optics is its metal on metal precision turrets that offer zero reset after sight-in and its precision glide erector system to ensure accurate tracking and repeatability. Its solid one-piece tube anodized with hard finish makes this scope shockproof and durable while being Argon purged and O-ring sealed makes it deliver a lifetime of fog proof and waterproof performance.

If you’re looking for budget scopes, you may want to check this list of the Best Cheap Night Vision Scopes here

Vortex Optics Diamondback 4-12x40 Second Focal Plane Riflescope - Dead-Hold BDC Reticle

We Recommend

Vortex Optics Diamondback

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