Our Rating: 7.8 / 10
Budget red dots are a crowded market - Vortex makes it easier to purchase without fear by having all of their options be pretty great, the StrikeFire II included.
The StrikeFire II is a mid-size red dot optic that offers reliability, ruggedness, and sleek design to your load out.
Size (LxWxH in mm)
Don’t submerge, water-resistant but not waterproof
Up to 7,000 hours
Lens Cover Type
$200 or less (Check latest price)
The field of budget red dots offers a lot of contenders and competitors. It’s often hard to definitively say what the best option is, especially when some companies offer numerous models in the same price range. One of those companies is Vortex. Now, none of the Vortex red dot offerings are particularly bad - in fact, all of them are very good. This trend continues with the StrikeFire II. This sight is an ideal match for ARs, but it’ll work on a variety of weapon types.
The first thing you notice about the StrikeFire is the same as the first thing that you notice with any given Vortex red dot: the fact that the optics in the StrikeFire II are actually really sharp and really nice. Quality optics at a price point half of what you’d expect is really Vortex’s forté, and this sight is no exception. It’s clear, with no distortion. You get a great field of view and can see out quite far. Really, it’s exactly what you’d expect. It’s also not bluish or tinted, like many lenses are at this price range, so you get an accurate and unhindered picture.
The sight features a red and green dot, which gives you options. The green dot is ideal for low-light or indoor environments, while the red is great for bright environments. The night vision settings also give you a little more leeway. The sight will fit most situations you find yourself in. The dot is crisp and small and readily apparent; it won’t obscure distant targets like some other sights with large dots do, too. This makes it easy to strike right on target even at distances of 200 yards. If you get a magnifier and use it in conjunction, you’ll just be even more accurate.
For the most part, using this sight is easy. It’s very ergonomic, and the controls are pretty intuitive as well. Adjustments are easy to do, but the markings on the turret adjuster are hard to read, primarily due to the fact that they’re white and the metal of the turret adjuster is a light steel or aluminum. Also, the clicks of the adjustments are a little mushy, which can make it hard to adjust on the fly with precision. However, I’ve definitely experienced worse, and it’s a little nitpicky at the price.
The battery life on the StrikeFire II isn’t bad at all. However, the battery type is a little bit of an issue. The CR2 battery just isn’t terribly common and it can be hard to find a replacement when you need it. You may end up needing to order online, preferably in a multipack. This is a good idea, anyway, but if you’re in a rural area, your local shops may not stock CR2 batteries, so it’s just something to be aware of.
The design is overall nice. It’s pleasant to look at and does its job really well. Unfortunately, the sight doesn’t offer absolute cowitnessing, which may push some people away from it. On the other hand, the fact that the built-in lens caps snap open and closed is a nice feature that will help ensure that you don’t lose the lens caps. Also, it’s always nice to have lens covers included with the sight instead of needing to buy some on your own. It’s also a little larger than you may be expecting, but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, just something to be aware of.
Setting up the StrikeFire II is easy enough, but the mount is a little confusing. It only mounts with one screw which may make you feel like it could be more secure, but for what it’s worth, our usage has shown it to be pretty stable. The hand-screw for tightening the sight to the mount is sort of small, which makes things even harder by making it difficult to tell whether or not it’s on there securely. On the other hand, though, the mount is included, which is more than many other mounts in the same price range can say for themselves. Once your sight is mounted, it’s easy to zero in and shouldn’t take long. The aforementioned problems with the adjustments may be a little annoying, but the StrikeFire holds zero really, really well, so you shouldn’t have to adjust all that often.
The sight definitely holds up to a lot. Much like with any Vortex product, you’re getting quality construction. True craftsmanship is put into the manufacture of these sights, and it shows. It’s waterproof, fog-proof, and shockproof and can take a lot of rumble tumble. It’s also super dependable and will pretty much always be there for you when you need it, through thick and thin. Vortex accents this through their legendary Vortex VIP Warranty and renowned customer service. If you ever have a problem with your sight, send it to Vortex and they’ll fix or replace it, free of charge, through the entire lifetime of the sight. This is also transferable, so if you resell it, buyers can feel secure that they’ll have the same promise.
Vortex knows how to make a good red dot sight for cheap. This sight is fantastic, and it offers a lot of utility to shooters and works great with an AR. If you have an AR, though, I’d also take a good look at the Vortex SPARC AR before you move forward on this sight. If you don’t and are looking for a solid red dot sight for other weapons, then Vortex has got you covered with a great offering at a great price - Yes, you should buy this sight.
No matter what you buy from them, Vortex makes it really hard to go wrong. They offer a few different options as far as budget red dots go, and none of them are bad. The StrikeFire II showcases this pretty much perfectly, so if you’re in the market, do yourself a favor and pick this one up!