If you have kids and need a place to store your gun while you are at home, as is the law in many states now, then the Barska Ax11620 Mini biometric gun safe will fit your requirements.
It has a reliable scanner that is one of the highest rated by customers that I have ever seen. You can put it on the wall or on the floor or even hide it at the back of a cupboard, it is versatile and many customers eventually get more than one. They get one for each parent and separate ones for valuables.
In this review I go through all the features of this model the AX11620 and some of the commonly asked questions. As well as the pros and cons. Use the table of contents to navigate the article.
Small Compact Size
This is the smallest size personal gun safe from Barska, it is designed for concealment rather than heavy duty protection. It offers the customer something that is not available anywhere else, one of the best biometric scanners on one of the smallest safes. It is great to keep your firearms away from children as the biometrics only open to the programmed fingerprints.
30 Registered Fingerprints
The main unlocking mechanism is via scanning a registered fingerprint. This type of lock is suited only to those fingerprints programmed into the database. It is a good alternative to combination safes as you do not have to remember any codes and only need to use a key as a last resort.
Pre-Drilled Mounting Holes
On the bottom and back of this model are factory drilled holes that allow you to mount it to either a floor or wall. One of the bonuses is that you can mount it to a wall because it is so small. Larger models do not always have the option of being mounted to a wall due to size constraints. Always buy a gun safe with pre drilled holes as it will require a lot of effort to drill them afterwards. Mounting hardware does come in the box but you can use any wall plugs and bolts that you wish.
Depending on how often it is accessed the batteries could last up to 2 years. It uses 4x AA batteries which are fairly common. Using good batteries is a must if you want it to perform reliably, we recommend Duracell batteries as from our experience they last the longest.
Deadbolt Locking System
The door is secured shut using two solid steel deadbolts. The door is not spring loaded and requires you to just swing the door open after the deadbolts get retracted. Unlocking is fast once a successful print is recognized.
Two backup keys come along with the product and the keyhole is hidden underneath the barska plate at the front. You will have to unscrew this plate to get to the keyhole.
Audio Low Battery Warning
When the battery is low on power then after an activation it will beep three times and there is a small LED that will flash red.
You are supplied with a protective floor mat so that your valuables and handguns do not get scratched on the base of the safe.
Tips for Use
Wipe the fingerprint scanner after every use with a dry cloth
It is important to remove traces of dust from the scanner so that no one can dupe the scanner with an imprint of your finger. Wiping with a dry cloth or tissue will make sure this cannot happen.
Remove inner lining for more space
You can remove the inner lining so you can get more stuff inside. However you are unlikely to fill it up to the top so having more height on the inside is not too important.
Frequently Asked Questions
What size guns can fit inside?
The safe looks smaller in the pictures than it actually is, but can fit two handguns quite comfortably even though they will be lying on top of each other. .45s, 9mm and 357s will fit. If you want to check whether your handgun will fit then draw out the base interior dimensions on a piece of paper (these are listed in this review) and measure it out against that, if it fits inside the drawing it will fit in the safe.
Does it have an alarm if left open?
Yes, this is quite a common feature for a few household items that require closing (even your fridge should have a left open too long alarm) If you leave it open for longer than 3 minutes and do not touch it then beeps will start sounding.
How does it stop people programming their own fingerprints?
Programming fingerprints is done using a button located on the inside so you have to have a successful activation or open with the backup key before you can program a scan in. This prevents people from just putting their prints in for later activation.
Best uses for the Mini Biometric Safe
It is recommended to use it in your bedroom, however because of its size you can hide it anywhere in the house. Best used for storing handguns in an easily accessible location separate from a large home safe. It will fulfill your needs if all you want to do is put your firearms away safely when you are home especially if there are children around.
Exterior Dimensions HWD: 8” x 12” x 8”
Interior Dimensions: 7.5” x 11.5” x 5.75”
Thickness of Steel: 0.5 cm/ 0.25 inch
Model Number: AX11620
Quiet in use
Beeping is very quiet, when opening it is quiet so as not to alarm a burglar if you have to in such an unfortunate event. When a customer was comparing this to the GunVault MV1000 it was found to be quieter.
This is one of the models that has the least complaints about the biometrics that I have seen. This is echoed by the main problem that customers have is the mounting instructions and the hardware that come with it.
Poor Mounting Instructions
A few people found it hard to understand the written instructions that describe mounting the safe. The best way to properly mount it is to measure up the holes and then mark out where you want it on the wall or floor and then put supporting wall plugs in and bolt it in.
The RRP is around $360 but you can get it for about $150 on amazon right now. It fits a niche that required a very high quality option. GunVault, and Stack-On offer similar safes but they are not as high quality but also not as high a price. For a quality biometic safe you can’t go wrong with this.
To conclude this is the smallest biometric pistol safe that you can buy from Barska. It is reliable, fast to open and fulfills safety requirements required for the home. If you are looking for a good safe that you can depend on to keep your firearms locked away while you are home and out of reach of kids then this will do that perfectly.