First Look: Vortex Defender-ST Micro Red Dot

First Look: Vortex Defender-ST Micro Red Dot

Vortex has just announced the Defender-ST, an all-purpose micro red dot designed to work on everything from handguns to shotguns to carbines.

Following last year’s release of the Defender CCW, Vortex is now expanding the series with the release of the Defender-ST micro red dot sight. While the CCW was obviously intended for small, concealed carry pistols, the Defender-ST is larger and was designed for more general-purpose use on handguns, carbines, shotguns and offset riflescope mounts.

Mounted via a DeltaPoint Pro footprint, the Defender-ST has a slew of features that will make it an excellent choice for both duty and range use. That includes durability, as the Defender-ST is constructed from 7075 aluminum with a ShockShield polymer insert that’s designed to protect the optic from recoil impulses and the realities of daily use. It’s waterproof, fogproof and shockproof as well.


Other features include a large distortion-free aspherical lens, a textured front face to facilitate easier racking off objects and a choice between a 3- or 6-MOA red dot reticle. The Defender-ST also has 10 manually adjustable brightness settings, motion activation, a 10-minute auto-shutoff and an advertised ~25,000-hour battery life. Thanks to the location of the battery compartment, it can be replaced without removing the optic from the gun as well. I got to shoot with a Defender-ST while at Vortex’s headquarters this last winter, and it proved to be an excellent match for an offset mount on an AR-15 with an LPVO.


Each Defender-ST will ship with a Picatinny mount, a Glock MOS adaptor plate, a rubber cover, a lens cloth, one CR2032 battery, a tool and multiple sets of screws for mounting it on most common optics-ready handguns. MSRP is $469.99 and it’s available now.

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