Considering getting a miniature red dot sight for your pistol and rifle? In this article, we’re comparing these two very different red dot optics, Trijicon RMR VS Vortex Venom.
Which one should you pick? A lot has to do with the price and quality.
The Trijicon RMR Type 2 is a high-end optic that cost about $430 – 550, while the Vortex Venom is one of the hottest selling micro red dot sight on the market for just about $ 230. Obviously there are huge price and quality differences, and both are made for handgun and rifle usage.
If the price is not an issue here, we recommend going with the battle-proven Trijicon RMR that works on any weapon platform. We recommend the Vortex Venom as the entry-level optic for handguns with low recoil, and it’s a great affordable option while using it as an offset backup sight.
At the end of this post, you will know the difference between the two red dot sights, and which one to pick based on your needs.
Trijicon RMR VS Vortex Venom Comparison Chart
Check Out: Best Handgun Red Dot Sights For The Money
Trijicon RMR Type 2
- 3.25 MOA ADJUSTABLE LED RMR: Features an automatic brightness mode and easy push buttons for eight adjustable brightness settings including 2 NV and 1 super bright
- DEPENDABLE ELECTRONIC DESIGN: Ruggedized Battery contacts and electronics ensure performance and survivability in harsh environments
- UNIQUE PATENTED HOUSING SHAPE: Military-grade aluminum alloy forged housing shape diverts force of impact away from the lens, greatly increasing its durability
- BATTERY CONSERVATION MODE: Automatically adjusts aiming dot to ambient lighting conditions after 16.5 hours
- The Venom Red Dot Sight-3 MOA promotes rapid target acquisition while providing a precise point of aim; getting shots down range and on target fast. The Venom's aluminum housing ensures this unit will...
- High quality, fully multi-coated lenses offer a clean, wide field of view. Power and dot intensity controls are conveniently located on the left side of the sight to choose between 10 brightness...
- The Venom also has an auto-brightness mode that uses an ambient light sensor to control dot intensity if the shooter prefers. Parallax Free
- 1 MOA wind age and elevation adjustments are super sleek and make sighting in a breeze. The top load system makes changing the CR1632 battery a breeze, as you will not have to remove your sight to...
MOA Dot Size Selection
Picking the right dot size is important, and at first, you need to decide the distance you are trying to reach. Generally speaking, large MOA dot sizes are made for close-range shooting for faster target acquisition.
So something between 3 MOA to 6 MOA is great options for competition, tactical and self-defense.
The smaller the dot such as 1 MOA has a more refined dot for more precision on long-distance targets.
The Trijicon RMR offers 1 MOA, 3.25 MOA, and 6.5 MOA, and the Venom offers just 3 MOA and 6 MOA. If you need to shoot long distance with your optic with a bit more accuracy, it’s better to go with the Trijicon RMR 1 MOA dot size than with the Vortex Venom.
For close-range shooting, 3 MOA is a great option that works well for pistols and like a 45 degree offset backup sight.
Lens Window Size Matters
The Trijicon RMR has a slightly larger window size than the Vortex Venom. For shooting a handgun with a red dot sight, the larger the window the faster the shooter can acquire the dot and the sight picture.
The problem with a smaller window is speed. It happens very often with smaller window sights, which the shooter has to be very refined in how they draw and hold the pistol to consistently pick up the red dot without losing it.
In addition, anytime when you rapid-fire, it’s very hard to keep the red dot in the window, which slows down follow-up shots.
In this round, Trijicon RMR is the winner.
Read More: Check out Trijicon SRO, an updated RMR with an even larger window size
Durability – Can’t Rough Handle The Vortex Venom The Same Way
When it comes to durability, the Trijicon RMR Type 2 comes WAY on top of this competition with the Vortex Venom.
This is not even a debate!
The Trijicon RMR is made for 7075-T6 forged aluminum, in addition, the entire housing unit is beefy and ruggedized for any high-stress physical impacts. The forged corners of the RMR diverts stress and strain away to prevent malfunction, which means slamming it against sharp corners to charge the slide or dropping it on concrete will not affect the optic at all.
In addition, the type 2 version is upgraded for pistol specific use, which has an upgraded battery compartment to hold the battery tighter for repeated recoil.
This makes it perfect for handguns and rifles.
Furthermore, the Trijicon RMR can handle the sharpest recoil and still retain it’s zero assuming it’s mounted properly. It will continue to work without failing, which why it’s battle-proven and has been used by our military in the field for many years.
On the other side, the Vortex Venom is a budget red dot sight that is not as strong as the RMR. In the past, I have seen my friend’s Venom battery cap fly off the slide due to the sharp slide recoil, so I highly not recommend mounting it on high recoil handgun like the 40SW.
The glass coating is anti-reflective for greater clarity, and its constructed to withstand high levels of recoil and impact. In my own personal experience, I would only use it as offset backup sight on a rifle where it doesn’t experience repeated recoil or G force.
Battery Life – RMR Lasts Way Longer
The Trijicon RMR has a better battery life than the Vortex Venom. The RMR Type 2 has up to 2 years of constant-on battery life and 5 years in dark storage using just with one CR2032 battery. The RMR Type 2 also has new features to save more battery life.
- Brightness adjustment lockout to prevent accidental adjustment for conceal carry users
- Battery conservation mode after 16.5 hours to conserve battery by adjusting to ambient lighting condition
The Vortex Venom only has up to 150 hours on the highest brightness settings, and up to 30,000 hours on the dimmest settings. The only difference is that the Venom uses a CR1632 battery and it features
- 14-hour auto-shutoff feature to conserve battery life.
- 10 Illumination settings
- Auto brightness
Short battery life isn’t the biggest deal-breaker, and the most important thing is how fast you can replace the battery without any effort.
The Trijicon RMR requires sight removal as the battery goes under the sight. So every time you do this, you have to re-verify zero.
The nice part about the Vortex Venom is its top battery loading design, so the users don’t have to remove the sight every time the battery is replaced.
Both optics come with manual and mounting accessories, however, none of them comes with mounting plates specific to your firearm platform.
- If you don’t have an optic ready pistol that contains all the compatible mounting plates, then you need to mill your handgun slide specific to the Venom and RMR.
- If you have an optic ready pistol, then please use the appropriate mounting plate provided.
- If you want to use it on rifle platforms, then you need to buy aftermarket mounts for them
RMR Won’t Break, But Vortex Has The Best Warranty Policy
The Vortex Venom is fully backed by the company’s lifetime warranty. If you break it they will replace it, no question asked. The Trijicon RMR is a super tough sight that probably wouldn’t break whatsoever unless something else happened to it.
Trijicon, however, doesn’t offer the same type of warranty as Vortex, they will only replace an item if it’s still within 5 years from the original manufacture date. Their warranty program does not apply to damages caused by obvious abuse or anything deemed abnormal.
I don’t think anyone who spends $500 ish on a high-end optic would do that, and I also have full confidence that the Trijicon RMR will last forever.
The Trijicon RMR in many ways is the gold standard for pistol and rifle optic. It’s designed for military use, so everything is beefy and solid. It can generally be used in the upwards of 30000 rounds or more without losing zero, and still, keep going.
The Vortex Venom is a great optic for starters who aren’t ready to spend $500 on an optic. The Venom is such an affordable and fun optic when shooting something like a 22LR, it’s light and works very well on a rifle as a backup sight.
If you have the money for a high-quality optic, and you’re an experienced shooter then go with the Trijicon RMR. If you’re just getting started, go with the Vortex Venom