Burris Fastfire 3 vs Vortex Venom: Head to Head Comparison

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By Dennis Howard •  9 min read

There is no doubt that both Burris and Vortex build some of the best optics on the market.  In the compact red dot sight niche, there is an overwhelming number of options.  A search on Amazon shows page after page of red dot sights from well-known manufacturers to names I can barely pronounce.  Red Dot sights have become a staple item among shooters of all kinds.

Burris and Vortex Optics are two of the top contenders in this market. The Burris Fastfire 3 and the Vortex Optics Venom often compete head to head in the marketplace.  I wondered how these two red dot sights stack up on paper when compared side by side. Let’s look at each of these red dot sights and then compare them to find out how they stack up and which of these sights comes out on top.

Burris Fastfire 3 Red Dot Sight Review

Burris Optics has been building fine optical sights since it was founded in 1971 by Don Burris. Burris has developed a reputation for quality, performance, and competitive pricing, from the first Fullfield riflescope series to the current array of night vision, thermal and mainstream optics.   The Fastfire 3 red dot sight doesn’t miss the mark.

Burris FastFire III Reflex Red Dot Sight for Rifles, Pistols and Shotguns

The Fastfire 3 is a small form-factor red dot sight designed for rifles, shotguns, or pistols. Small red dot sights have become the rage among pistol shooters.  The low profile of these sights presents few problems for those of us who carry a pistol on a routine basis.  The weight added to the pistol is negligible and the benefits almost always outweigh the negatives.

Let’s begin looking at the features offered with the Burris Fastfire 3 before we dive into the technical specifications.

The Technical Side

Here is a look at the factory specification for the Burris Fastfire 3 red dot optical sight for those of you who like the technical side.

The Word on the Street

It’s always good to listen to what is being said on the street about these kinds of products.  The actual users often provide better insight into optics and scopes.  



Last update on 2024-07-12 at 21:53 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Burris Fastfire 3 is an excellent choice for the price and makes a great entry-level red dot optic.

Vortex Optics Venom Red Dot Sight Review

I won’t hesitate to say that I am a Vortex Optics fan.  I have several Vortex Optics products in my gun safe.  I have an AR pistol with a Vortex Venom red dot sight installed. For the money, I believe Vortex Optics to be some of the best buys on the market. Vortex Optics is a solid choice if you want above average quality, features, and performance at a reasonable price.

Vortex Optics Venom Red Dot Sights

No matter the application, the Vortex Venom red dot sight can meet the challenges.  Vortex has not shorted the shooter from the low profile design to the high quality glass, where it counts in creating the Vortex Venom red dot sight.  Let’s begin this review by looking at the features that Vortex Optics offers with the Venom red dot sight.

The Nuts and Bolts of the Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight

From a technical standpoint, you can’t get much better specifications than the Vortex Optics Venom red dot sight.

What Users Report Overall About the Vortex Optics Venom



Last update on 2024-07-12 at 23:14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Vortex Venom red dot sight is in the middle range of prices.  However, the quality, workmanship, and performance of these optics get you more for the money.

The Side by Side Comparison Burris Fastfire 3 Vs. Vortex Venom

Putting these two scopes side by side is a good way to get an overall impression of the comparison.  

FeatureVortex VenomBurris Fastfire 3
Dot ColorRedRed
Dot Size3 MOA3 or 8 MOA
Adjustment per click1 MOA1 MOA
Max elevation adjustment130 MOA115 MOA
Max windage adjustment100 MOA86 MOA
Length1.9 inches1.9 Inches
Weight1.1 ounces1.5 ounces
Battery typeCR 1632CR 1632
Battery Life (lowest setting)30,000 hoursUp to 5 years
Battery loadingTop access
Side Tray
Brightness Setting10 levels3 levels
Intensity setting controlsSide-mounted buttonsSide-mounted buttons
MountsPicatinny or WeaverPicatinny, Weaver, or Custom

There isn’t a lot of difference physically or internally between these two sights.  For many shooters, the choice boils down to price and that is where the Burris Fastfire 3 gets the edge.   I hate to hang my hat on price alone.  When the comparisons on paper are so close, the choice then comes down to performance and the shooter’s preferences.

My Choice – The Vortex Optics Venom Red Dot Sight

My experience with Vortex Optics products over the years has been without a blemish.  I have not shot many Burris scopes, so I can’t say my experiences with the two products are equal.  I can say that I have never been disappointed with one of my Vortex Optics products.  

The Vortex Venom optic that I have mounted on an AR pistol platform performs flawlessly.  The gun typically rides in a custom rack behind the back seat of my pickup truck.   The pistol endures all the bumps, bounces, and shocks of running off the road and down the highway.  The Vortex Venom scope mounted on this AR pistol holds zero without fail.

Last update on 2024-07-12 at 23:14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Vortex Venom optic gives me the confidence that I have a red dot sight that will perform reliably when I need it.   That is the bottom line on my red dot sight selection.

Making Your Decision – Your Needs and Preferences

Ultimately, your needs, expectations, and preferences should guide your decision about a red dot scope.  Do your due diligence, learn all you can, try them out if you can arrange it, and then decide.  In the meantime, be safe and shoot straight.

Dennis Howard

A life long hunter, fisherman, and outdoorsman, after surviving a devastating tornado in his home town, he saw the effects on people's lives as they struggled to cope. He built his first bugout bag a few weeks later and has been a dedicated prepper/survivalist since that time. After a career as a fireman, Dennis opened a retail store (FFL approved) catering to the military, law enforcement, and like-minded individuals. The store built their own AR platforms. Furthermore, Dennis was also an NRA instructor in both long gun and handgun as well as a certified range safety officer. Read his full interview here.