Skip to main content

New Vortex Venom Affordable Performance Optics

Great image quality, excellent performance and feature-packed, the new Vortex Venom scopes have a lot to bring to the table at a great price point.

New Vortex Venom Affordable Performance Optics
Two new Venom Optics from Vortex provide value and performance.

If I bought a premium optic for every rifle, I would not be able to afford ammo or the gas to hit the range. This is why I’m glad there are budget-friendly optics. Last year, my confidence in these optics grew when I evaluated six sub-$1,000 precision riflescopes and learned that manufacturers are providing better glass, build quality, and reticles. Of the tested brands, Vortex recently added two Venoms, including a 1-6x24mm SFP low-power variable optic (LPVO) and the 3-15x44mm first focal plane (FFP). The 5-25x56mm FFP was the first Venom launched in 2021. I reviewed this optic for Precision Rifle Shooter and was impressed with its features. At the time, not many scopes in its price range had a 34mm maintube and tree-like reticle. Both help a long-range shooter. All Venoms are made in China. They track well, have great glass for the price, and run smoothly. To instill buying confidence, all Vortex scopes regardless of country of origin are inspected in-house and held to the same quality standards. Plus, Vortex has an unlimited lifetime warranty that is fully transferrable.

Venom 1-6x24 SFP

vortex-venom-optics-review-02

No optics line is complete without a LPVO. Sitting atop an AR-15, the Venom 1-6x24 SFP is the right amount of magnification from close quarters to the outer limits of the .223 cartridge. The SFP in the model names denotes their second focal plane (SFP) reticle, meaning that the reticle sits at the ocular end of the scope behind the magnification lenses. A SFP reticle stays the same size no matter the magnification. The reticle is Vortex’ AR-BDC3 ballistic drop compensating reticle. At the center of the reticle sits a 1-MOA dot surrounded by a 16-MOA half circle. The BDC portion of the reticle is tuned to common loads from .223/5.56 to .308/7.62 cartridges. Details for those drops are included in the manual. With a little math, a user can create drops for many other cartridges. The reticle includes 5, 10, and 15 mph wind dots. Sitting high above the open half-circle is a ranging reticle that works from 300 to 600 yards on 40-inch-tall E-silhouette targets. SFP reticles have a limitation: the holdover values and ranging reticle only work at the highest magnification. In practice, this is not a concern if you dial 6X when using the reticle. The benefit of a SFP reticle is that the reticle will not grow and potentially cover the target. Turning to the scope’s external features, the body is aircraft-grade aluminum with a 30mm maintube. The elevation and windage turrets are capped and have 140 MOA of windage and elevation. An illumination dial on the left of the body has six brightness settings. Only the half circle and center dot light up when you turn on the illumination. The eye relief is a generous 3.7 inches. Length is 10.3 inches and weight 19.5 ounces. Included in the box is a 2-inch scope shade, a throw lever, and flip caps. The scope offers surprisingly clear glass with good edge-to-edge clarity and no color fringing. The controls are smooth throughout the motion of travel, and the turret clicks are solid.

Venom 3-15x44 FFP

vortex-venom-optics-review-03
If you’re looking for a quality scope with reach, consider Vortex’ new Venom 3-15x44 FFP at $650.

The Venom 3-15x44mm FFP has features you need to jump into long-range shooting. The single-piece, aircraft-grade aluminum 34mm maintube has 40 mils/135 MOA of elevation adjustment and 19 mils/47 MOA of windage adjustment. The reticle is Vortex’ EBR-7C FFP available in MOA or mils. Since it’s FFP, the reticle sits in front of the magnification lenses and increases/decreases in size with magnification. The benefit to a FFP reticle is drops are always the same. The EBR-7C reticle is an open dot, Christmas-tree reticle with ranging subtensions and moving target leads. The reticle’s lower field is made up of small dots and offers an uncluttered field of view for spotting impacts. The scope is available in MOA or mil reticles. Usability is excellent on the Venom 3-15x44mm FFP. The Venom’s non-locking elevation turret has positive clicks with no backlash and land on the cap’s lines, not somewhere in between. The lines are also well-spaced, making it easy to distinguish which value is dialed. A RevStop zero stop ring is included in the box, which, when installed, will prevent the turret from going below the zero point of your scope. The downside to its design is that it takes up space and cuts the overall travel to 19 mils/47 MOA. The glass in the Venom gives a clear image on brightly lit and cloudy days throughout the power range. In my scope tests, the two most common issues are with turrets not tracking accurately and the glass getting milky and degrading near the high end of the scope’s magnification. Both Venom scopes passed my turret tracking and optical quality tests even after I slammed them on all axes on my scope testing block. I was surprised with the image quality in both scopes. They stayed clear throughout the magnification range. For their applications, the reticles are solid choices, too.




GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Recent Videos

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Guns

Browning X-Bolt Mountain Pro

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Guns

Taurus TX 22 Competition

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Gear

Federal FireStick Precharged Loads

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Gear

Remington Core-Lokt Tipped

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Guns

Walther PDP

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Learn

Hodgdon Shooting Powder

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
News

A World Record Attempt: Practice Round and Media Day

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Learn

How to Aim with Iron Sights

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
News

Interview with Israeli Defense Forces, Part 1

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Guns

Custom Mossberg 500 at the Range and Live Turkey!?

Learn the difference between revolvers and semi-auto pistols and what makes them different. Learn more here: http://bit....
Learn

SHOOT 101: Know Your Handgun Types

Shooting Times Magazine Covers Print and Tablet Versions

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

Buy Digital Single Issues

Magazine App Logo

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Shooting Times App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Shooting Times stories delivered right to your inbox.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Shooting Times subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Enjoying What You're Reading?

Get a Full Year
of Guns & Ammo
& Digital Access.

Offer only for new subscribers.

Subscribe Now