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March 21, 2024
min read

Shatter Expectations: Precision With the Proven Burris FastFire 3

I'm not sure we will ever get enough of red dots and using them on several different platforms. The Burris FastFire 3 has been a wonderful addition to our options and has already proven successful. Available in a couple different options, this red dot sight may be the perfect one for you.


If you've watched any of our reviews or read articles from our website, you know that we are no strangers to red dot sights. These sights are available in a few different types including prismatic, holographic, and reflex.

Based on our experience, the ones we tend to use most are reflex sights.

We've mounted them on everything from pistols, to shotguns, to AR style rifles. The brands we've tried include (but aren't limited to) Vortex, Leupold, Hawke, Tru-Glo, Bushnell, Crimson Trace, Axeon, and Burris. In fact one of the first reflex sights Adrian ever used was a Burris FastFire 2 while turkey hunting. So, of course, when they brought to market the Burris FastFire 3, we knew some exciting testing was coming our way.

Burris FastFire 3 has some great upgrades
Burris Fastfire 3 has some great upgrades to discuss

Let's dive right into the FastFire 3


  • Magnification: 1X
  • Size: 1.9" long x 1" tall x 1" wide
  • Weight: 1.5 oz
  • Reticle Style: Available in either 3 MOA or 8 MOA Center Dot
  • Brightness Settings: 3 different brightness settings
  • Total elevation adjustment: 115 MOA in 1 MOA increments
  • Waterproof
  • Battery: 1 x CR1632 included - Accessed from top of the sight
  • Mounting platform: Doctor platform standard and comes with picatinny mount. Other platform mounts available

Speed and Accuracy Advantages:

One of the main things Burris claims is that this red dot will give you speed and accuracy advantages because of its lightweight and compact design. We would definitely agree with that.

Small and lightweight

Coming in at barely an ounce without the mount and right under two inches in length, the FastFire 3 is absolutely compact and lightweight. Even when mounting it on a couple different guns, we haven't noticed it change the balance of the firearm at all. In fact, after mounting it on a turkey shotgun (which is where we've used it the most), it's hard to tell it's even there.

As far as it giving us a speed and accuracy advantage, we would say that is the case with basically all the red dots we've used. In general, having a red dot with one point of focus seems to make me a lot more accurate, whether it’s a pistol or a long gun.

There’s no need to line up dots, or lines, and I'd probably go as far as to say you're cheek weld doesn't always have to be exact like when lining up a bead on the rib of your shotgun. As long as the dot is on target, you’ll hit it.


So far we've been impressed with the clarity of the glass and the actual dot itself on the FastFire 3.

Clear glass is really hard to get a picture of!
  • We have the 3 MOA dot size and love that for turkey hunting
  • If your main goal is pistol shooting, you may tend to prefer the 8 MOA dot for faster target acquisition
  • While there has been some starburst effect on the dot for me (likely due to my astigmatism), it's not as bad as some others
  • The glass itself seems very clear to us
  • And it has an "Index-matched, Hi-Lume® multicoating" which they say helps with low-light performance and keeping the glare off

Comparing this to other red dots, we have shot some that definitely throw a red glare when you’re in the sun, but I haven’t noticed that extra glare on the FastFire 3.

Brightness Settings:

The auto-brightness setting also seems to add to the speed advantage.

Brightness setting on medium in this picture

While it does have 3 different manual settings the user can self-select based on their environment, the auto-brightness setting can get rid of that guesswork. It has a sensor in front that detects the amount of light in the direction of your target and adjusts the brightness of the dot accordingly.

This setting can make sure your target isn't washed out by a bright light on early morning or late evening hunts, while ensuring as the sun gets brighter throughout the day you can still see the dot.

Those brightness settings are easily adjustable using the power button on the side of the sight.


This area is one of the major upgrades to this sight in comparison to the FastFire 2. When you're ready to change the CR1632 Battery in the FastFire 3, you access the battery compartment from the top of the sight.

Battery replacement without sight removal from firearm

This is important because it means you don't have to remove the whole sight from your gun and, therefore, may not feel the need to re-zero after a battery change. You simply unscrew the battery lid, switch it out, and screw the lid back on.

However, this area is also one of the improvements that could be made. Once the battery is in place, some people have mentioned difficulty securing the compartment lid back in place. What we've noticed is that you have to put direct vertical pressure down on the lid when screwing it back in. This seems to make it fit more easily.

As far as battery life, it does have an auto shut off after 8 hours just in case you're like us and forget to turn it off!

Hopefully that auto shut off function will save you from buying new batteries each year and Burris claims that battery life on the FastFire 3 could be up to 5 years.


Patterning and sighting in the Burris FF3
  • Clearly marked windage and elevation adjustments
  • Small flathead screwdriver included makes adjustments easy
  • Soft clicks in the adjustment could make small corrections a little more difficult
  • 1 MOA adjustments with up to 115 MOA available elevation
Clearly marked windage and elevation adjustments

Getting zeroed in for us was a fairly quick process both on our shotguns and on a pistol. While the soft clicks offer no real audible notification that you're changing windage or elevation and could make sighting in a little more difficult, there are clearly marked dots and lines indicated on the adjustment screws. So as long as you have sharp eyes or your bifocals, it's easy to see your MOA changes.

Durability and Toughness:

Both of us have hunted with this red dot in the turkey woods which involves running, crawling, climbing, sitting in rain, and of course even falling. Through all of that, this red dot has held up very well, and so far we’ve had zero problems with it keeping it's zero.

Burris FF3 is durable enough for the turkey woods

The largest gauge shotgun we've mounted it on is a 28 gauge, so we know it can easily take that recoil. I would expect that it could easily handle a 20 or 12 gauge recoil as well.

But, just in case you're worried about it Burris does have what they call their "Forever Warranty." So, if it quits working properly for any reason AT ALL, they will repair or replace it - no questions asked and with no proof of purchase necessary. The Forever Warranty even transfers if the sight transfers owners! Thankfully we haven’t had to test it out yet, but that’s some pretty solid peace of mind.

Pros & Cons

  • Lightweight and compact
  • Auto shut-off after 8 hours
  • 3 user adjustable brightness settings
  • Auto brightness setting option
  • Battery compartment on top of sight
  • Long battery life
  • Burris "Forever Warranty"
  • No shake awake feature or option
  • Auto shut off after 8 hours could make it not ideal for concealed carry options
  • Battery compartment lid can be difficult for some


Q: Does the Burris FastFire 3 Have Auto On?

A: No. There is a small power button on the side. This power button is also your brightness adjustment. There is not a shake awake option on this one, but it does have an auto off function after 8 hours.

Q: Is the Burris FastFire 3 Durable?

A: It sure has been for us. We've carried it around the turkey woods and haven't taken it easy on this red dot. Even after high numbers of patterning videos with TSS turkey loads, we haven't noticed any creep from zero.

Q: Is the Burris FastFire 3 Waterproof?

A: According to Burris, yes. We haven't submerged it or intentionally ran water over it (something about doing that to electronics doesn't seem right), but we have had it out in rain and heavy fogs without any problems.

Q: What is the Warranty on the FastFire 3?

A: Burris has what they call the "Forever Warranty" on their FastFire 3. They warrant that it will be free from manufacturing defects for the product’s lifetime from the date of purchase or delivery (whichever occurs later). It even transfers ownership, the warranty goes with the product wherever it goes. Funny though that they make a distinction between the date of purchase or delivery on a lifetime warranty??

Should I Buy This Thing?

You know the drill, the decision to buy or not to buy depends on what you want.

If you are looking for a red dot that will either stay on all the time for concealed carry or has a shake awake feature, then you should not buy this one - maybe take a look at the recently released FastFire C.

But if that’s not you, the FF3 may be one to consider. For our purposes, especially in the turkey hunting woods we have really enjoyed hunting with it. It's small platform increases your overall field of view while still providing you with a clear point of aim when the moment of truth approaches.

Burris FF3 mounted on a Meadow Creek Mounts rib mount w/co-witness sight

We’ve found it overall to be a great red dot. The clear glass, an easily identifiable dot, and its ease in mounting and zeroing have likely made it part of our turkey shotguns for a while. Of course, don't forget the auto adjust brightness feature that can take the guesswork out of remembering to make the brightness adjustments the next morning after a sunny afternoon hunt.

  • MSRP is $276 but it always seems to be cheaper than that retail at around $230
  • And is usually cheaper on Amazon. Right now it’s like $180
  • Hopefully it's still this price when you're reading it - Palmetto State Armory has it on sale for $149.99 right now!
  • We can make this section pretty easy overall by saying that we’ve already purchased two (2) of them!

Keep in mind, we would take a little off because it doesn’t have a shake awake feature and because the battery cover could be slightly easier to open and close. But, if those aren't major issues for you, then you'd probably side with us in giving the Burris FastFire 3 a 4.95/5 on the Should I Buy This Thing scale.

*All opinions are ours. We are not paid for any of these reviews. We were able to borrow or purchase some of these items for testing and review at a discount. This never impacts our opinions or freedom to report on them. Our goal is to always provide a thorough, unbiased, and honest review with no fluff - just facts and our opinions - so you can make a well-informed buying decision.

Written by

Robbie has enjoyed the outdoors since he can remember. His earliest memories include hours upon hours of squirrel hunting and learning how to enjoy all aspects of hunting season in God's wonderful outdoors. Now he is always working hard and testing gear in the field to give you the best review and most thorough information he possibly can.


All opinions are ours. Some items we receive for free, borrow, or purchase at a discount, but this never impacts our opinions or freedom to report them.
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