The Burris Fastfire 3 is a lightweight miniature reflex sight suitable for different shooting applications. The clear picture and ease of use make it perfect for competition shooters or home defense. It can be attached to rail systems, used as a close quarters sight in conjunction with long-range optics, or installed on optics-ready pistols.
Is It Worth Your Money?
Burris has been a manufacturer of optics for a long time, not just in the firearms industry, and their products have a reputation for being high quality, affordable, and accurate. The series is lightweight, durable, and provides the shooter with a bright red dot for quick targeting. It is backed by the brand’s Forever Warranty so you can have ease of mind knowing your money is spent on an optic that is made to last a lifetime.
Scope Review and Breakdown
- The bright red dot is easy to see and allows for quick targeting. It is available in either a 3 MOA size dot or 8 MOA size dot depending on the shooter’s preference. Eye relief for this unit is unlimited, so as long as the unit is on and the user is looking through it, the dot will be visible.
- It is compact and lightweight, a perfect option for performance. The size won’t affect firearm stability, and it is shockproof to withstand recoil. It is especially crucial in competition shooting where speed and weight are huge factors for success.
- It has exceptionally versatile mounting options. It is available with an optional Picatinny mount for standard rail systems and can mount to virtually any other firearm using available mounts from the brand. It can be installed on pistols, revolvers, bolt action rifles, semi-automatic rifles, shotguns, and even larger optics with no issues.
- It has an automatic brightness sensor that adjusts to the current environment to make sure the dot is always visible to the shooter. There are also three manual brightness settings to choose from which are easily changed with the push button controls.
- Reticle: 3 or 8 MOA Red Dot
- Lens: 21x15mm, 1x magnification
- Mount: None/Picatinny (Other mounts available from the brand)
- Eye Relief: Unlimited
- Length: 1.9 Inches
- Weight: 0.9 oz/1.5 oz
Ease of Use and Reliability
The Fastfire 3 has simple controls for elevation, windage, On/Off, and brightness, none of these require special tools to adjust. The optic is also waterproof to protect against the elements, and shockproof to protect against firearm recoil. The lens features high-grade optical glass to provide brightness and clarity for lasting durability.
One CR1632 battery has approximately 5,000 hours of life.
- Extremely Versatile - It can be mounted to almost any firearm via the standard mount or a variety available from Burris. It can also be used along with long range scopes, either on a top-mount or a 45° angled side mount as a close-quarters unit.
- Easy to Use - Brightness automatically adjusts to
environment, no special tools for windage or elevation, and push buttoncontrols are easy to use. Battery access is on the top and does not require removal of the unit from the firearm for replacement. There is an automatic shut off after 9 hours.
- Easy to See - Clear glass and bright red dot allow for quick target acquisition. Unlimited eye relief allows shooters to mount it anywhere on their firearm. Models are available with a 3 MOA dot or an 8 MOA dot depending on shooter preference.
- Forever Warranty - Protects against damage and defects for the lifetime of the optic.
- Small field of view - Some shooters may be uncomfortable with the small lens if they are used to larger red dots or scopes.
- No protective cover included - For the price a slip on rubber cover could easily be included to help protect the optic from damage or debris while not in use.
- Quality Control Issues - Several shooters report quality control issues with the models out of the box. This includes the units not turning on (even with new batteries), fuzzy or unclear dots, and sights losing zero after one range session. These have been replaced by the company under warranty.
All of the Fastfire 3 models cost less than $300, which is middle of the road territory for a quality mini reflex unit. Lower quality products are available for under $150, and several models from Trijicon are far more expensive than this item.
Who is this scope for?
Type of shooter
It is an excellent option for competition shooters and home defense use. The size, weight, and variety of mounting options make it ideal for any competition shooter looking for a quality unit for their pistol, rifle, or shotgun. The easy to see the dot and automatic brightness adjustment allow for someone protecting their home to focus on defending their family, not on having to adjust this item in a time of crisis.
Type of gun
It is available with a standard rail mount, or any number of mounts are available from Burris. It works well on AR-15s and other semi-automatic rifles, pump and semi-automatic shotguns, and optics-ready pistols that can be milled to accept this unit. It can be installed on almost any firearm.
In our opinion, this product is a high-quality mini reflex that fulfills different purposes. It is easy to use and shooters with and level of experience will not have any trouble using the product. While a simple design, it has a wide variety of applications.
Our primary concern is with the reports of products leaving the factory with issues that should have been caught by quality control. Several users had problems with units not working out of the box, unclear dots, and the units losing their zero very quickly. Burris has taken care of these with their warranty program, but it is still something to keep in mind.
If you do purchase this unit, you should always be sure to test it and train with it before putting to use in a real-world situation. Products without the factory issues have shown to be accurate and reliable. For the price, it is one of the best ones on the market today.
Other options worth looking at
There are several different models available on the market today. If this product isn’t quite what you are looking for you may try one of these other options:
- The Fastfire 2 is similar to the later model but does have some different features. It is available with a 4 MOA red dot which some shooters may be more comfortable to use. It has only an On/Off button and automatic brightness and does not include the manual brightness settings on this product. It also uses a standard CR2302 battery, but it must be removed from the firearm for replacement.
- If you want to try a mini reflex but don’t want to pay for the Burris, there are several less expensive options available from Sightmark. Sightmark optics typically feature different size and color reticle options and different case designs but are still easy to use. They will not have the durability or quality of a more expensive unit, however, and should only be used by the casual shooter.
- For the more experienced shooter, there is the Trijicon Rugged Mini Reflex. They are of the highest quality and are incredibly durable. Trijicon optics are used by many law enforcement and military agencies worldwide and will perform to the highest level in any situation.