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  • Post last modified:May 4, 2023

In this comparison guide, let's talk about Vortex StrikeFire 2 vs SpitFire 3X, both from Vortex and which one is better?

Before we start comparing these two optics, please note that we're comparing a 1X optic to a 3X magnified optic. If you're new to firearm optics, then this is perfect content for you.

When we compare these two sights, we are also comparing the advantages and disadvantages of them as far as the close quarters and long-distance shooting.

Vortex StrikeFire 2 is generally better for close-range shooting, and the SpitFire 3X is kinda like an ACOG. Literally this is the budget-friendly version of compared to getting an Aimpoint Micro or Trijicon ACOG.

At the end of this post, you will understand the differences between these two optics and know which one to pick.

Vortex StrikeFire 2 VS SpitFire 3X Core Comparison

Vortex strikefire 2 vs spitfire 3x
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Read Related: Vortex Sparc AR VS Sparc II

Which One To Get?

Vortex StrikeFire 2 Side View

Image Referenced Focus Camera

Reasons to buy Vortex StrikeFire 2 - This sight is one hot selling Vortex 30 mm tube red dot sight under $200 and it works very well.

It's perfect for a plinking range gun and for airsoft training, where fast target acquisition and situation awareness are important.

It comes with lens cap and mounts that usually cost extra when going with another high end brand. So that's a competitive price point for something that works and looks like an Aimpoint Comp at 1/4th the price.

Elevation and windage adjustments are well protected with caps sealed with O-rings that feels tight on the tread. The click value is standard 0.5 MOA per click for a red dot sight, and each click is very positive and tactile.

For someone that likes the Aimpoint Comp type optics, but don't have the money for it. The Vortex StrikeFire 2 the perfect option.

Reasons to buy Vortex Spitfire - If you want a ACOG alike scope without spending 4 figure amount of money to shoot up to 400 yards, the Spitfire 3X prism fixed magnification scope is what you can get to shoot mid range targets.

Fixed-power prism scopes have been topping ARs for decades thanks to their simple, compact and reliable design, but few have come close to the combination of value and performance of the Spitfire 3x

The sight can run without battery and the 5.56mm calibrated BDC reticle is etched on the glass for distanced shooting 

The prism based design delivers sharp image quality and allows for unique reticle designs that are visible with or without illumination during day light condition.

For someone who wants to shoot mid range distanced targets without wanting to get into red dot magnifier setup or super expensive ACOG scope, the Vortex Spitfire 3X is a good choice.

Check Out More: Best High End Red Dot Sights

Where Are Budget Vortex Scopes Made?

AR15 with Vortex Spitfire 3X scope

Image Referenced Vortex Optics

Most Vortex scopes including SpitFire and StrikeFire 2 are made in China, Taiwan, and the Philippines. Only the top line products are made from Japan and the US.

The company offers a lifetime warranty on all of their products, but this doesn't mean the quality sucks.

China is known to be making cheap and low-quality products in the past, but that's no longer true in the last 20 years as their manufacturing capabilities have exceed the rest of the world.

The days of "Made In China Suck" stereotype is over, Brand products made in China like Holosun, NiteCore, ThruNIte...etc are literally jumping down the throats of American competitor brands like Surefire, Aimpoint and Trijicon for making almost better products at 1/2 the price tag. 

So these budget optics don't disappoint. They feel solid, and it handles the recoil from 5.56mm round pretty well.

Its construction feels sturdy and reliable.

1X vs 3X Difference

When comparing these two optics, one is a 1X and the other is 3X magnified, therefore understanding the difference can help you make a better decision.


Vortex StrikeFire 2 POV

The Vortex StrikeFire 2 is basically a lookalike version optic to the Aimpoint Comp series red dot sight. It has a 4 MOA size red dot or green dot in the center, and its primary usage is for close quarter and medium-range shooting.

4 MOA dot size covers about 4" shot group at 100 yards.

With unlimited eye relief on a 30mm objective lens, when you pick up the sight you notice you can quickly acquire targets around you simply just place the dot on the target.

And you can shoot with both eyes open as the optic is made to be parallax free, which means as long as you see the dot you can use it to aim without fully aligning the sight picture. This is perfect for closer ranges shooting.



Image Referenced Vortex

The Vortex SpitFire 3X has a 3X magnification for longer ranges shootings. The EBR 556 etched reticle has an illumination feature for the low light environment.

Shooters can reach up to 500 yards with this optic. In addition, the reticle markings have simple ranging design that helps you estimate distances and target sizes.

Eye relief is something you have to deal with when using a magnified optic, and generally speaking, you want something 2.5 - 4". This means to get a perfect view, you have to perfectly align with the scope first.

Based on personal preference, the fixed magnification 3X scopes are perfect for reaching about 300 yards, and anything else further I need something more to see my target.

Battery Life

Please note that we're talking about budget optics here, and the battery life of these two optics aren't the best on the market, to be honest. However, they generally last about 1 year if you constantly using them.

The Vortex StrikeFire 2 uses a CR2 battery that lasts about 6000 hours on minimum brightness settings, and 400 hours on maximum settings. That's almost 250 ish days you can use this budget optic.

The Vortex SpitFire uses a CR2032 battery for reticle illumination, which lasts about. If you're just plinking around with this optic during the day, generally speaking, you don't need to use the reticle illumination unless its a cloudy day.

Practical Applications

FN SCAR17 with Vortex StrikeFire 2 Red Dot Sight

Image Referenced Vortex Optics

Both of these products are sporting optics, and they work very well on the field. Even though these optics aren't made for combat, but they perform very well for anyone looking for cheaper alternatives.

Vortex StrikeFire 2 red dot sight can do everything that a super expensive optic can with 1/4 of the price. It's perfect for plinking on the range, tactical shooting, and airsoft.

It also accepts any 30 mm tube ring mount, so you can pick your favorite aftermarket mount.

Vortex SpitFire Prism 3X is a magnified optic for medium to long-range shooting. The reticle has BDC (Bullet Drop Compensator) for accurate shots up to 300 yards to 500 yards, and please note that different ammo performs differently from the EBR BDC reticles, which isn't precisely marked for these long ranges.

Up to 200 yards, the SpitFire 3X does the job perfectly.

Advantages and Disadvantages

When using the StrikeFire 2 1X fixed red dot sight, its perfect for close-range shooting, but not a great optic for long-range shooting past 150 yards, and it's hard to positively identify targets at those long distances with just 1X.

However, at 1X the shooter can quickly acquire targets on the move with two eyes open and great situational awareness.

When using the SpitFire 3X, you get a magnified aim at your target for more accuracy at longer distances. You can positively identify the target and see more details downrange, however, it's not great at all for anything from 10 to 25 yards while looking through a magnified optic.

Note: If you want the same advantage of the 3X on the 1X scope, please consider adding a red dot magnifier scope behind the red dot sight.

Final Verdict

Both optics are great products for beginners who are looking for something nice but not too expensive. The Vortex SpitFire 3X is perfect for longer distance shootings, and the StrikeFire 2 is for anyone plinking around up to 50 yards or  military simulation force on force airsoft games.

The battery life isn't the greatest on the market, but at a minimum you get 250 days of use out of it. That's almost 2/3 of a year you can use it, and choosing between these two optics, I wouldn't focus too much on the battery life as the deal-breaker.

These two optics serve a different purposes, and if you're new to shooting, the Vortex StrikeFire 2 red dot sight is the best bet that works well for plinking and home defense.