Suppose you’ve got a rifle or shotgun and need a full-size red dot which allows for quick target acquisition, ease of use, and high quality without spending a fortune. Sound impossible? Not anymore thanks to the SPARC II and StrikeFire II red dot sights from Vortex Optics. Both of these red dots will get the job done – so which one is right for you?
Vortex has been manufacturing high quality, dependable optics for a long time. It offers a wide range of models, the highest quality materials, and an unlimited lifetime warranty – all at affordable prices. This combination makes Vortex the right choice for your next optic.
Scope Description and Features
Small size with large performance for any role.
The SPARC II is a compact red dot sight that can be used on any number of rifles or shotguns. It has a traditional style 22mm tube with a 2 MOA bright red dot that offers 10 levels of brightness with the lowest 2 being night vision compatible. It is waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof to withstand any environmental conditions you may face. It is rated to perform in temperatures range from –4° to 158° Fahrenheit.
The SPARC II can be combined with a number of different size mounts (included) depending on what your needs are. This allows the SPARC II to be used in a wide range of applications. It is powered by a CR 2032 battery which lasts from 350 hours to 5,000 hours depending on brightness setting. A 12-hour auto shutoff is built in to help conserve battery life.
- Height: 1.1″
- Tube Size: 22mm – unlimited eye relief
- Length: 3.1″
- Weight: 5.9″ (without mount)
An excellent choice for the modern sporting rifle.
The StrikeFire II is a standard size red dot that is ideal for AR-15 platforms. It features a 30mm tube for a large sight picture. The 4 MOA dot is available in either a red/green option or a bright red option. Both have 10 settings and are night vision compatible with the lowest 2.
Like the SPARC II, it is weather and shockproof and will operate in temperatures ranging from 22 below to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Power comes from a CR2 battery that can last between 400 and 7,000 hours depending on the setting, and a 12-hour auto shutoff is built in.
The StrikeFire II includes a cantilever ring mount which allows a lower 1/3 co-witness with standard AR-15 sights. This mount places the center of the sight exactly 40mm over the rifle’s base which provides easy and quick targeting. Unlimited eye relief allows the sight to be mounted anywhere, allowing the shooter to get the sight picture they prefer.
- Height: 1.45″ front, 1.18″ rear
- Tube Size: 30mm – unlimited eye relief
- Length: 6″
- Weight: 7.2 oz (without mount)
head to head comparison
So which one do you need?
While these are both tube style red dot sights, they do have quite a few differences. The SPARC 11 has a more compact body with a smaller lens objective and smaller red dot. It comes with a variety of height mounts to be used for different weapons. It is only available with a bright red 2 MOA dot.
The StrikeFire II is a more massive sight with a larger lens and a cantilever mount designed mainly for use with the AR-15, though it can be used with other mounts as well. It has a larger 4 MOA dot and is available with red/green or bright red options depending on shooter preference.
Both are incredibly durable and will perform to the same standard. The StrikeFire II is larger, heavier and is not as versatile as the SPARC II, but it does offer a larger field of view for quick target acquisition.
Sparc II pros
- Compact Design
- Lots of mounts included
- Easy to use
SPARC II cons
- 2 MOA dot may seem small to many shooters
- Small diameter
- Not magnifier compatible
Strikefire II pros
- Great for AR-15s
- Large diameter for quick targeting
- Multiple dot options
STRIKEFIRE II cons
- Larger than the SPARC II
- Heavier than the SPARC II
- Does not include as many mounting options (though more are available)
Cost and Value Comparison
Both of these sights can be found for under $225, making them an extremely affordable option for this style of a red dot. Comparable red dots from other brands can cost 2 to 3 times as much for the same features. Both have excellent construction that will withstand the elements.
The SPARC II allows for more mounting versatility, while the StrikeFire II has more dot options and is magnifier compatible. The StrikeFire II is also larger and heavier than the SPARC II, though it does offer a longer battery life.
The SPARC II is a very multipurpose red dot that is an excellent option for shotguns or semi-automatic rifles other than the AR-15. It’s smaller size and weight may be a preference to some and will work better on shotguns than the larger StrikeFire II.
It includes four different height mounts so for use on any number of long guns – including use on the AR-15 though you may find the 22mm lens and 2 MOA too small if you are used to larger red dot sights. It is not compatible with magnifiers so keep that in mind if you are planning on using one.
The StrikeFire II is a smart choice for use on any AR-15 rifle. The 30mm tube design offers a broad view with quick targeting, and the included cantilever mount is designed specifically to be co-witnessed with AR-15 iron sights.
The optional red/green or bright red dots is a nice feature, and it is compatible with aftermarket magnifiers. The 4 MOA dot is large enough to see comfortably while still allowing for precise shooting. It is a great option if you need a full-size red dot and doesn’t want to spend a fortune for an Aimpoint.
If you are in need of a high-quality red dot sight without spending hundreds and hundreds of dollars you should check out the SPARC II and StrikeFire II. The SPARC II (Check Price on Amazon.com) is ideal for shotguns and other semi-automatic rifles, with the StrikeFire II (Check Price on Amazon.com) will give you all the quality and features of an Aimpoint at a fraction of the price.
As with all Vortex optics they are covered by the VIP unlimited lifetime warranty to protect against failures and defects, so you never have to worry about your new red dot sight failing. Either one of these will provide you with a lifetime of service.
For more 30mm red dot sights you can look at the various options available from Aimpoint. Aimpoint red dots are in use by the US Military and numerous law enforcement agencies around the United States.
They are of extreme quality – and you will pay for it. Aimpoints can start just under the $400 mark and increase steadily from there. The StrikeFire II allows for the same style sight without the price.