Home Gun Safe Guide Best Biometric Gun Safe [2020’s Top 10 Recommendations]

Best Biometric Gun Safe [2020’s Top 10 Recommendations]

by Tom Ginevra

In a Rush? Here’s Our Number 1 Choice!

Large: Viking Security Safe VS-50BLX

Small: Vaultek Essential Series Quick Access Handgun Safe

About Biometric Gun Safes

Owning guns is a privilege, and one that comes with certain duties of care to others. Keeping guns safe is a priority for every gun owner, and that means security measures that do the job.

It’s not just intruders whom you want to keep away from your guns; many accidents in homes have occurred when children manage to get hold of guns, with obvious tragic results that you don’t want to think about.

Then there’s keeping your gun safe when travelling, either in a vehicle or at a hotel. Plus, you want to be able to access your weapons quickly, while also being assured that others cannot get them.

What’s the answer?

The biometric gun safe is the best bet, and is the most secure and practical method of keeping your guns safe and secure. These clever safes generally use a fingerprint scan to enable opening, and that means that only you – or other permitted persons – can open the box.

It’s simple, quick and very secure, so who makes the best biometric gun case? We took a look at some of the best models around, to save you the trouble! Here’s our run-through of the best biometric gun safes available right now.

The Best Biometric Gun Safes: Our Top 10

1. Vaultek Essential Series

Pros
  • Vaultek
  • 18 gauge steel
  • Compact size
  • Quick-opening lid
  • 4-months on one charge
Cons
  • Keypad scratches easily
  • Some consumers had problems with battery life
  • Not cheap

Make a note that the gun safes on our list are in no particular order, so while this one is first, it may or may not be the best! It’s from Vaultek, who have a great range of gun safes so we can rest assured they know what they’re doing. This is a single-gun portable safe that comes with a variety of impressive features. It also features a backlit keypad for easy access in poor light.

Compact Size

At just 10.5”x 8.5”x 2.125” this model from the Vaultek Essential series is perfect for when you’re on the move, and is sized to take a standard pistol in its neatly trimmed interior. There’s room in there for paperwork, perhaps your passport, or other valuables too.

Light and Strong

Made from 18-gauge steel for strength and yet light to carry, this portable gun safe features a full biometric lock with auto-opening lid for quick access, and is designed for toughness and durability.

Rechargeable Batteries

Long-life rechargeable lithium iron batteries power the systems that keep the box secure, and one charge – it takes 2.5hours for a full charge via a micro-USB port – gives you 4-months of operation.

Cost and Value

We believe the cost of this Vaultek biometric gun safe is pretty much where it should be given its specifications, and it is certainly good value. Add it to your shortlist if you have a single pistol to secure.

2. AmazonBasics Deluxe Dual Gun Case

Pros
  • Cheap price
  • Two gun capacity
  • 50-fingerprint programming
  • 1-second opening time
Cons
  • Many concerns about quality
  • Flimsy construction
  • Has been known to open by itself!

AmazonBasics is perhaps not the first place to visit when you want security for your guns, but this two-gun biometric gun safe is a great price and we believe deserves to be considered – especially if you’re on a budget.

Two-Gun Capacity

This model has room for two pistols, which is a bonus if you like to carry two with you, as well as space for valuables and paperwork. It’s not as compact as some at 14.8” x 11” x 3.7”, but it is a decent size for carrying in your vehicle.

Up to 50 Fingerprints

You can programme this model to open for as many as 50 fingerprints. Of course, this is only recommended when your guns are used by various people, and we would caution against too many people having access to your guns. It also has an access speed of under a second, which is useful

California Approved

Doubts about the brand may be alleviated by the fact this gun safe is approved by the California Department of Justice as a firearms protection device, which gives it a great deal of credence.

Cost and Value

AmazonBasics is there to provide base-level items of a decent quality at sensible prices, and this biometric gun safe is half the price of some on this list. If you’re on a serious budget, the approval mentioned above gives it some gravity. However, we found many customer complaints about it being generally poor quality, even ‘opening by itself’!

3. GunVault SpeedVault SVB500

Pros
  • Neat wall-mount design
  • 20 fingerprint capacity
  • Over-ride key
  • 18-gauge steel
Cons
  • Poor customer satisfaction
  • Easy to pick
  • Battery not rechargeable
  • Not reliable

A neatly designed gun safe designed to handle a single pistol and to be wall-mounted, this one is made from 18-gauge steel and has a nicely padded interior, giving easy access to the gun within at the touch of a fingerprint.

Strong Construction

On the face of it, 18-gauge steel and a specially designed high-strength lock mechanism give this biometric gun safe – from the GunVault brand – all the credentials it needs, but reading further from customers gave us a few doubts about its actual strength.

Interior Light

A clever touch is the interior light which automatically comes on when you open the safe via your fingerprint. This one can memorise up to 20 fingerprints, which is surely enough in an environment where you are intending to limit the numbers of people with access.

Over-ride Key

A nice touch is the over-ride key mechanism that comes with this gun safe, a safeguard that means the key-holder can get at the gun in the event the single 9-volt battery malfunctions or loses power.

Cost and Value

The GunVault safe is around the same price as similar single-gun models that we have included on the list, and should therefore be value for money. Our main concern is that, while we like the strong steel and clever mounting of this one, too many customers have complained it is easy to pick, it arrived with dead batteries, it is unreliable and even ‘dangerous’. In fact, 25% of more than 60 buyers were disappointed with it – not recommended.

4. Viking VX-50BLS Large

Pros
  • Viking Brand
  • Large size for multiple guns
  • Fingerprint and keypad
  • Override key
  • Shelving
Cons
  • Large size so not portable
  • Customer complaints about poor electronics
  • Further complaints about flimsy quality
  • Expensive in comparison to some

This is the first of a few biometric gun safes from the Viking brand, which is one of the market leaders in gun safes and accessories. This one is a large model, designed for holding several handguns plus other items in complete security, and is intended as a permanent fixture rather than a safe for portable use.

Large Size

Measuring 20x14x12 inches on the outside, and weighing 48lbs, this is a substantial biometric safe that has interior space for a number of handguns, plus handy shelves for other items such as valuables, ammunition or whatever you need to protect.

Pry-resistant

Cleverly designed with two 20mm solid steel bars that lock into the sides of the safe when closed, the door and casing of this safe is pry-resistant. The door is steel measuring 5mmm thick, and the dead-bolts are motorised for automatic operation, all for your added security.

Fingerprint and PIN-Code

This Viking safe can memorise up to 32 fingerprints and also comes with an optional single PIN code panel. It also has a laser-cut back-up key for if the batteries are dead, and has an audible warning should you leave the  safe open by mistake.

Cost and Value

If you’re looking for a large, permanent safe for the home, we would recommend you check this one out a little more closely and it weighs in at around the price we would expect for a substantial safe of this size – around the $250 mark at the time of writing. It also gets several great reviews from a large number of satisfied users but – and it’s worth bearing this in mind – some have said it does not recognise some fingerprints, seemingly randomly, and there are complaints about overall quality.

5. Viking VS -25BL Safe

Another from the Viking range of biometric gun safes – and they are a favourite with many gun owners – this one is, essentially, a smaller version of the model above, with all the same attributes in a more compact size.

Compact and Secure

This Viking safe measures 10x14x10” and is therefore a lot more compact than the sister model above. It is designed to hold a couple of pistols and other accessories, and is made from one-piece steel with a door that is 5mm thick for added strength.

Dead-Bolts

As with the above, this safe features two 20mm motorized deadbolts that lock into the sides of the safe. The added security provided by these means that prying the door is not possible. The base also has pre-drilled holes for strong anchor bolts – which are supplied – to lock the safe in place.

Fingerprint and Keypad

The safe can memorise 32 fingerprints and has a keypad that can accept up to an 8-digit PIN code. It also comes with a laser-cut, secure override key for the event that the battery is not responding. The interior of the safe is carpeted for protection of your precious guns when taking them out or putting them away.

Cost and Value

This model ranks as good value among some of the other safes of similar size but it’s not cheap. The added security features are very welcome, especially the deadbolts, and it has met with many favourable comments by users. However, there are notable complaints from some buyers that the biometric reader is unreliable, and quite a few saying the safe they received simply did not do the job, so there’s work to do on Viking’s part in the quality control department.

6. Barksa Biometric Safe

Pros
  • Neat design
  • 120 fingerprint storage
  • Dead bolts for added security
  • Sensible size
  • Anchor bolts
Cons
  • High price
  • Concerns about reliability of scanner
  • Quality problems reported by consumers

This neatly designed biometric safe comes from the Barksa brand, and on the face of it, looks like it should do the job. It’s a decent size while not being too large, it has some impressive security features and – while not the cheapest – it’s not a bad price in comparison to the others on the list.

DOJ Approved

This Barksa biometric safe comes approved by the Department of Justice as a viable safe for firearms, which is a very decent accreditation. It is made from solid steel – albeit just 14-gauge – and is designed to be tamper-proof to the greatest extent.

Decent Size

The safe is a good size while not being too large, and would be perfect for – say – a couple of handguns and other belongings. External dimensions of 14.5×16.5×8” mean it does nto take up too much space, but it is not the safe to choose if you are looking for a portable model.

Deadbolts

Two 20mm steel deadbolts lock into place when the door is shut, and can only be removed when the biometric fingerprint detector recognises one of the 120 possible authorised persons. It opens very quickly for easy access, and also has pre-drilled holes for if you want to secure it in place which is highly recommended.

Cost and Value

For what it is, this compact yet usable biometric gun safe is a little more expensive than some others, at just shy of $200. We like its security features – especially the deadbolts – and also the fact it comes with a spare emergency battery pack, which other makers could perhaps consider. However, while there are many positive customer comments, there are also varied complaints about it being easy to open – one user’s kid opened it and his fingerprint wasn’t registered – and general poor quality, so the jury is out on this one.

7. Cahoo Fingerprint Lock Cabinet

Pros
  • Cheap
  • Great for storing valuables hidden in a drawer
  • 20 fingerprint biometric opening
Cons
  • Not a gun safe!

This model is here mainly as a precautionary tale, to show the mistake you can make by not reading descriptions properly. It might be a biometric safe – of sorts – but it is not a gun case and – despite the low price – should not be purchased as one. For that reason, we will leave this here: if you want a box to shut away stuff you don’t want others to get, this is perfectly good, but for guns, it’s potentially lethal – steer clear!

8. Viking Security Safe – VS52BLX

Pros
  • Viking brand
  • Wall recess mounting
  • 2x 20mm deadlocks for added security
  • Biometric access plus override key
  • Interior light
Cons
  • Expensive
  • Space limited by recess design
  • Poor quality reports
  • Unreliable keypad
  • Poor battery life

Back to the real stuff with this model, which is another large model from the Viking range. As such, it features all of the attributes that come with the other large models from this highly regarded brand, and perhaps some of the problems we have already mentioned.

Bigger Size than Usual

Measuring 19x14x4 inches on the outside, this one is designed to be fitted flush in a wall space, and is a substantial biometric safe that has interior space for a number of handguns, plus handy shelves for other items such as valuables, ammunition or whatever you need to protect. It’s not as deep as the other large Viking model, but offers decent size within.

Pry-resistant

Cleverly designed with two 20mm solid steel bars that lock into the sides of the safe when closed, the door and casing of this safe is pry-resistant. The door is steel measuring 5mmm thick, and the dead-bolts are motorised for automatic operation, all for your added security.

Fingerprint and PIN-Code

This Viking safe can memorise up to 32 fingerprints and also comes with an optional single PIN code panel. It also has a laser-cut back-up key for if the batteries are dead, and has an audible warning should you leave the  safe open by mistake, plus it features an interior light so you can see what you are doing in poor light.

Cost and Value

This is not a cheap item – you’ll pay a little more than $200 for it we reckon – but t=it is a Viking and we do like the idea of a recessed all safe. It’s not as deep as some, and therefore there is less room inside, but it will handle a couple of guns, and the security features are reassuring. Be aware, however, that quite a few buyers have commented on the poor battery life – more than a couple say they last just one night – and the inability to open without the key as the keypad is unreliable.

9. Viking VS-20BLX Mini

Pros
  • Viking brand
  • Twin deadlocks
  • Padded interior
  • Biometric locking system
  • Very compact
Cons
  • Very small for the price
  • Quality concerns raised by customers
  • Biometric reader not suitable for older people

The smallest biometric gun safe in the Viking range is this one, the VS-20BLX Mini, which at just 8x12x8mm is clearly not going to handle much more than your sole handgun. However, it comes with all the usual Viking security attributes, including the double deadlocks, and is s sensible price. It’s also quite portable so you could take it on the move.

Very Compact Size

This Viking safe measures 8x12x8” and is therefore a lot more compact than the other models in the Viking range – hence the ‘Mini’ tag. It is designed to hold perhaps a single pistol – perhaps 2 at a push –  and other accessories, and is made from one-piece steel with a door that is 5mm thick for added strength.

Dead-Bolt Security

As with all Viking gun safes, this safe features two 20mm motorized deadbolts that lock into the sides of the safe. The added security provided by these means that prying the door is not possible. The base also has pre-drilled holes for strong anchor bolts – which are supplied – to lock the safe in place.

Fingerprint and Keypad

The safe can memorise 32 fingerprints and has a keypad that can accept up to an 8-digit PIN code. It also comes with a laser-cut, secure override key for the event that the battery is not responding. The interior of the safe is carpeted for protection of your precious guns when taking them out or putting them away.

Cost and Value

Viking safes are never cheap – they are one of the biggest-selling brands on the market after all – and while this one does appear a touch expensive when compared to some, it’s worth bearing in mind that few biometric gun safes this small will feature two motorized deadlocks as added security. As always, we have to mention some poor quality reviews, especially with regard to the fingerprint reader, as well as the electronics giving up quite easily.

10. Secu Top-Loading Biometric Safe

Pros
  • Great price
  • Excellent security features including deadbolts
  • Compact
  • Biometric plus keypad and key
  • Strong steel
Cons
  • Very small
  • Poor quality according to some customers
  • Problems with locking mechanism

Our final selection is another compact biometric gun safe, this time from the Secu brand, and it has the unusual feature of being a top-loading device. It is made from sturdy steel, comes with deadlocks, and is surprisingly affordable, but is it the real deal?

3-Way Opening

This model offers biometric fingerprint opening by way of the usual electronic keypad, with 32 possible fingerprints permitted, plus it has a PIN code system and a back up key. This is all good so far, and we like what we see – although that price is suspicious.

Thick Steel

The body of the safe itself is made from thick and strong 1/8” steel for added protection plus the safe comes with dual deadlocks that lock into place when the door is shut, preventing prying open and adding to the strength already provided by the drawer. It also comes with two anchor bolts so it can be secured to the floor or wall, which we strongly recommend.

Compact Size

The external measurements of this compact and neat biometric safe are just 11.75×8.75×4.25”, making it a surprisingly small device, with just ¼” lost on internal dimensions. The interior is padded to protect your guns on entry, and it is powered by 4 x AA batteries.

Cost and Value

Now, we’re concerned here, as this little safe – complete with its impressive on sight security features – can be bought for around $70, which is considerably lower than many others of a similar size, so is it up to the job? We found a good number of very positive customer comments praising its effectiveness and value for money, but also many saying the locking mechanism is poor quality, they needed the key to open it, and it wouldn’t lock, so the choice is yours!

best biometric gun safe

Buying Help

That’s our list of the 10 best biometric gun safes you can buy right now, but which – if any – of the above is for you? Before we get to the point where we recommend one or more, let’s just have a chat about some of the factors we came across when we were looking at these.

Some Features To Think About

While researching these biometric gun safes we were surprised by a few things we came across. The first was that almost universally, as many customers loved the product as had some serious complaints about it. The main complaints involved the biometric touch pad not working for them. When we looked at this problem more closely, we came across a possible explanation.

On a few of these, but not all, it would appear that the instructions that come with the safe – whether a handbook or just a leaflet included the statement, or similar, in small print that biometric readers ‘may not work for persons aged over 55’!

Apparently, this is because with age, our fingerprints become less vivid and – therefore – less recognisable to anything but the most sophisticated biometric readers. That’s certainly something to think about!

So, we need to give you a verdict. In fact, we’re going to recommend two – one that is a large biometric gun case, and the other a smaller one, so let’s have a look!

Our Verdict

Bear in mind that this is merely our opinion and that there are many more gun safes on the market than the 10 listed above, and this is our choice. If you want a large, permanent fixture gun case, we think the Viking VX-50BLS Large is your best option from those above. It’s a good size, it is well-made, it comes with the usual Viking security features, and while it’s among the most expensive on the list, we don’t see the point in skimping on expense for something as important as gun safety.

If a small safe is what you want – perhaps for a single handgun – we recommend you take a closer look at the Vaultek Essential Series. Sensibly priced, a decent single-gun size and with some very happy customers – and of course those not so – it does the job it’s designed for, and would be great for carrying your gun while on the move.

There it is then, and we hope our article has helped you find the gun safe that is right for you, so remember, keep it locked at all times, and allow only those you trust to have access, and you should have the ultimate in safety where your guns are concerned.

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