Nightforce SHV Review

In a Nutshell

Nightforce’s SHV builds on the reputation for excellent quality that Nightforce has created for themselves and does it justice – at a (relatively) low price point and with really, really great materials.

What’s the Scope?

Nightforce’s SHV line is their entry-level high-end product. Incorporating excellent glass and robust construction, four different scopes with a variety of strengths and magnifications offer you a choice for whatever your shooting niche is.

Quick Specs

SHV 3-10×42SHV 4-14×56SHV 4-14×50SHV 5-20×56
Linear FOV (low zoom)34.9 ft/100 yd24.9 ft/100 yd25.1 ft/100 yd116.5 ft/100 yd
Linear FOV (high zoom)11.0 ft/100 yd7.3 ft/100 yd7.4 ft/100 yd19.2 ft/100 yd
Eye Relief (low zoom)3.5 in3.15 in2.8 in3.15 in
Eye Relief (high zoom)3.5 in3.54 in3.1 in3.54 in
Objective Diameter50mm56mm50mm65mm
Elevation Adjustment (MOA)90.00100.0090.0080.00
Wind Adjustment (MOA)80.0070.0070.0050.00
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  • IHR and MOAR reticles are both great
  • Extremely solid construction
  • Glass is the same as on Nightforce’s higher-end models
  • Tracking is phenomenal
  • Parallax adjustment from 25 yards to infinity


  • They’re a little on the heavier side!
  • A tad bit pricey, but worth every penny

​Our Review

The SHV line, where SHV is short for Shooter Hunter Varminter, is one of Nightforce’s rifle scope lines intended to cover the bases of any number of different shooters needing a high-quality solution for long-range shooting. There are a number of things to love about this line, and I’ve loved reviewing it!

The glass on these optics is incredible. The lenses and setting are comparable to much higher priced optics, and despite the fact that the line is cheaper, the glass is the same as many higher-end Nightforce offerings. The light transmission on all scopes, especially the 56mm model, is fantastic, with an incredible amount of vibrance. The eye relief is fantastic and allows you to easily hone in on targets and comfortably move around or adjust. Some models, such as the 4-14×56, allow you to adjust the parallax from 25 yards to infinity, giving you a huge amount of potential adjustment and correction.

The reticles are great. The MOAR reticle is excellent for precision shooting and gives you incredible mil-based tracking, too. The IHR reticle efficiently and quickly draws your attention to the center, saving you time, and the crosshairs are still thin enough to not be obtrusive at long ranges. The lit reticle on the 5-20×56 in particular is really great and has 11 different adjustments. On the other hand, the numbers indicating mils on the 4-14×50’s illuminated reticle are a little hard to read, so be wary about that.

The adjustments on these models are nice, with the turrets have solid and loud clicks. Where some mushier turrets will leave you fumbling, these won’t, and you’ll know exactly what you’re doing. They’re fairly easy to zero, and hold zero incredibly.. I guess that’s what you expect for the money, but it’s still fantastic. The downside is that these scopes are zero-set and not zero-stop. THe difference is that zero-set allows you to pop the turrets and set them to zero after you’ve achieved zero, while zero-stop allows you to return to your zero after adjusting. This isn’t a big deal, but know what you’re buying.

The construction in general is great. The materials are robust, perhaps even army strong, and the scope stands up extremely well to recoil. On the other hand, the accessories on some models, like the 4-14×56, feel cheap – cheaper than everything else. The difference is a bit jarring. Of course, how robust and powerful these scopes are comes at a cost: they’re really heavy. But since they’re mainly for hunting and the bench, you probably aren’t going to be doing a lot of clutch movement anyway. As a result, the weight shouldn’t deter you from giving this scope line a fair chance.

Should You Buy It?

I think these scopes are wonderful for the money. They’re great choices for target shooting, hunting, and varminting – just like the name implies. Every scope has their own niche. The 4-14×56 and 4-14×50 are great for shooting hogs and deer or with high accuracy out to 800 yards. The 5-20×56 is great for all of that as well, and gives you a little better of a distance. The 3-10×42 is the best option if you’re trying to keep a low-profile setup. It won’t shoot out to 800 yards or anything, but it’s great for hunting and target practice at a mid-range distance. If these sound like your needs, then Yes, you should buy them.

Closing Comments

The Nightforce SHV line is a fantastic set of mid- to mid-long-range scopes that will meet your needs with efficiency and excellency. They’ve been a joy to review and I definitely think they’re a worthwhile investment. They’ll certainly last you a lifetime!

If you weren’t able to find what you were looking for, don’t hesitate to check out our guide about the Burris MTAC 4.5, Aimpoint Pro, and the ATN X-Sight II.