5 Best Red Dot Optics for the Money – Assured Value for the Buck

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Red dot sights are worthy investments for successful target acquisition when you are out hunting, when you are trying to protect your home from predators and during sports shooting. So, which red dots are an assured value for the buck?

The main reasons as to why I purchase red dot sights for my shooting applications is so that I can enjoy effective low light shooting, faster target acquisition and more accurate long-range shots. When looking for the best red dot optics, you would need to look into their optical performance and their overall build structure so that you can evaluate their reliability, durability and versatility levels. I mean, wouldn’t you prefer a value for the buck that prevents you from continually spending more in replacing your red dot at all times just because they are always breaking down and their optical performance is not necessarily dependable? In this guide, I have reviewed 5 of the best red dot optics for the money and included a section of factors that you should consider before purchasing a red dot for your hunting weapon.

5 Best Red Dot Optics for the Money – Comparison Table

Model
Dot Size
Optical Magnification
Illumination Settings
Night Vision Compatibility
Call to Action
Vortex Sparc Gen II
2 MOA
1x
12
Yes
Burris Fastfire III
3 MOA
1x
3
No
Burris Trophy TRS-25
3 MOA
1x
11
Yes
Trijicon RMR Type 2 RMO6
3. 25 MOA
1x
8
Yes
Holosun HS507C- V2
2 MOA
1x
12
Yes

5 Best Red Dot Optics for the Money- Reviews

Vortex Sparc Gen II – best red dot sight for AR-15 rifles

Vortex Optics SPARC Red Dot Sight Gen II - 2 MOA Dot
  • The updated SPARC features rugged construction that’s still compact, with a lightweight form-factor....
  • With up to 700 hours of battery life on the highest setting, 50, 000 hour on its lowest, and night-vision...
  • Increased light transmission with multiple anti-reflective coatings on all air-to-glass surfaces....
  • Highly durable hard-coat anodization provides a low-glare matte surface and helps camouflage position. A...

The Vortex Sparc Gen II red dot is compact, lightweight and it features a rugged construction that is ideal for almost all your shooting applications. It features a 2 MOA dot and it is very quick when it comes to target acquisition at close-quarters and it is great performing in terms of pin-point accuracy at extended ranges. It has a decent battery life that runs for up to 700 hours on the highest setting and about 50,000 hours on the lowest setting. In addition to that, it is night vision compatible which makes it ideal for use in low-light conditions.

Specs

  • 12 illumination settings
  • 2 MOA dot
  • Battery life: 700 hours (highest setting) and 50,000 hours (lowest setting)
  • Unlimited eye relief
  • Night vision compatibility

Aside from that, the Vortex Sparc also features multiple anti-reflective coatings on all its air-to-glass surfaces that ensure increased light transmission across the entire visible spectrum. It provides you with an unlimited eye relief that ensures rapid target acquisition and it has 12 illumination settings that allow you to change the dot brightness intensity to match the situation at hand. Its optical housing features O-ring seals that prevent debris, moisture and dirt from penetrating the glass to ensure reliable waterproof performance when you are moving across different surroundings.

Pros

  • Waterproof and shockproof
  • Reliable battery performance
  • Rapid target acquisition and identification
  • Bright and crisp sight picture

Cons

  • Has an auto-timer of 12 hours so you may need to continually turn it on

Verdict

The Vortex Sparc Gen II AR red dot provides you with a decent optical performance and a reliable battery performance for all your shooting performance. It features a durable build quality that is rugged enough to withstand almost all environmental conditions.

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Burris Fastfire III – Most Affordable Red Dot Sight

The Burris Fastfire III features a lightweight construction and a durable design that is ideal for all your shooting applications. Its red dot has been fitted at the point of impact within your field of view to ensure a subtle performance when it comes to speed and accuracy during target acquisition.

Specs

  • 1x magnification
  • 3 MOA dot reticle
  • 1 MOA windage and elevation adjustments
  • Waterproof
  • Picatinny mount included

It features an automatic brightness sensor that controls its brightness levels to match the environmental conditions and it also allows you to manually adjust its brightness settings using 3 settings. Advantageously, it is waterproof and shockproof enough to withstand use in most kind of environments, no matter how harsh.

Pros

  • Bright enough for shooting applications
  • No –parallax
  • Fast and easy target acquisition
  • Sturdy and rugged construction

Cons

  • Has only 3 brightness settings
  • Some users have complained of battery defects

Verdict

The Burris Fastfire is a budget-friendly red dot sight that is ideal for almost all of your shooting applications. It is a guarantee of fast and accurate target acquisition and it does not compromise when it comes to its build quality.

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Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 – great low light performance

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Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope, 1x25mm, Black
  • Matte black featuring a 3 MOA Dot reticle with 11 brightness settings; Mounts easily on most picatinny...
  • Waterproof construction: O ring sealed optics stay dry inside, even when totally immersed in water....
  • Shockproof construction: Built to withstand bumps, bangs, drops and the rough and tumble environment of...
  • Nitrogen purged fog proofing: Nitrogen inside the scope ensures interior optical surfaces won’t fog due...

The Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight is a small and compact optical device that has been crafted with a durable and good quality metal housing. It rugged construction allows you to use it comfortably in all kinds of environments and for all your shooting applications. It is easy to mount and it works seamlessly with most picatinny rails.

Specs

  • 3 MOA Dot Reticle
  • 1x magnification
  • Unlimited eye relief
  • Nitrogen purged and O-ring sealed
  • 11 brightness Adjustments
  • Compatible with handguns, shotguns and rifles

The Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 is compatible with shotguns, rifles, muzzleloaders and pistols. It allows you to easily adjust the brightness of your red dot through its easy-to-use and convenient adjustment dial. It is nitrogen purged and O-ring sealed to ensure its waterproof and fog proof construction. It runs of a CR2032 battery and it has a decent battery life that is reliable enough for all your shooting applications.

Pros

  • Waterproof and Fog proof
  • Rugged construction
  • Decent optical performance
  • Rapid target acquisition

Cons

  • It does not get bright enough to see when it is too sunny outside
  • Intense red glare that could distort sight picture

Verdict

If you are looking for the most ideal red dot sight for low light conditions and you are trying to avoid breaking the bank, you would be impressed by the optical performance and overall features that the Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 has to offer.

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Trijicon RMR Type 2 RMO6- red dot with a unique housing design and ideal for use in tactical scenarios

Trijicon RMR Type 2 3.25 MOA Adjustable LED Red Dot Sight
  • 3.25 MOA adjustable LED RMR: features an automatic brightness mode and easy push buttons for eight...
  • Dependable electronic design: ruggedized Battery contacts and electronics ensure performance and...
  • Unique patented housing shape: military-grade aluminum alloy forged housing shape diverts force of impact...
  • Battery conservation mode: automatically adjusts aiming dot to ambient lighting conditions after 16.5...

The Trijicon RMR Type 2 RMO6 red dot sight features a patented housing design that absorbs impact away from the lens to increase its durability. It features adjustable LED sight that allow you to control the brightness of the reticle to your desired illumination. Towards its sides, it has been fitted with easy-to use buttons that allow you to adjust the brightness settings, power down the RMR for storage and toggle between automatic and manual modes.

Specs

  • 3.25 MOA adjustable LED RMR
  • 8 adjustable brightness settings; including 1 super bright and 2 NV
  • 1x magnification
  • Powered by a CR2032 Lithium battery
  • 1 MOA windage and elevation adjustments

It features a versatile 3.25 MOA red dot that is small enough to allow you to locate your target easily at close range and shoot accurately at all ranges. It is compatible with night vision devices which makes it suitable for use in tactical scenarios. It has a sustainable battery life that would last you throughout all your outdoor shooting applications including hunting.

Pros

  • Dependable electronic design
  • Unique patented housing design
  • Efficient battery life
  • Durable, portable and versatile

Cons

  • The bullet drop compensator is not present

Verdict

The Trijicon RMR Type 2 RMO6 is a versatile red dot for all your shooting applications. Also, it is durable and highly portable which makes it just the right fit for your hunting weapon.

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Holosun HS507C-V2 Red Dot Sight – Exceptional Battery Performance with Solar Charging Abilities

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Holosun HS507C-V2 Multi-Reticle 2 MOA and 32 MOA Circle Parallax Free Pistol Red Dot Optical Sight with Solar Failsafe and Shake Awake, Red
  • INCLUDES: Holosun Red Dot Sight | Coin Battery CR1632 | T10 L Key | Picatinny Mount | Lens Cloth | User...
  • LONG BATTERY LIFE: Features include Holosun’s Super LED with up to 50k hours battery life
  • ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY: There are 12 different brightness settings, including dim settings compatible with...
  • SHAKE AWAKE: Holosun’s Shake Awake Technology shuts the LED off during periods of motionlessness. The...

The Holosun HS507C-V2 provides you with an exceptionally wide field of view and a unique set of optical features that help you stay on target at all times as it reduces overall target acquisition times. It features a side access battery tray and large brightness control buttons that allow you to change the battery without having to un-mount the battery.

Specs

  • Picatinny mount
  • Coin Battery CR1632
  • 12 illumination settings
  • Uses shake awake technology
  • Solar chagrining abilities

It is crafted from high quality and rugged aluminum and it features multicoated lenses that have been designed to provide you with crisp, bright and a very clear sight picture. It uses both solar and a lithium battery to ensure its reliability at all times when you are out in the field. For this reason, it offers a maximum of 50,000 hours of battery life. Its optics have been designed with Shake AwakeTM Technology that senses any kind of motion that powers it on and off.

Pros

  • Exceptional battery performance
  • Durable, portable and versatile
  • Exceptionally wide field of view
  • Bright and crisp sight picture

Cons

  • Loose screws

Verdict

The Holosun HS507C has an exceptional battery performance as it is powered by a Lithium battery and has solar charging abilities. If you are often in the field for prolonged hours, you would be impressed by the overall optical performance that the Holosun HS507C has to offer.

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What factors should you consider before purchasing a red dot sight?

Red dot sights operate by emitting a red-light diode that reflects off an inclined piece of glass which in turn releases an illuminated focused red point towards the direction that you are aiming at. They have been designed to enhance your accuracy levels before you take a shot. When you are purchasing a red dot sight for your weapon, you should consider the following;

Size and Weight

Red dots come in different sizes that have been developed with regard to the different weapon designs in the guns market. So, to find the right red dot sight for your activity gear, you would need to understand the specific weapon that you are using in terms of its structure. Also, you would need to look at the available rail space on your weapon to determine which red dot would fit into it.

In addition to that, you would need to evaluate whether you intend to use your red dot sight alongside any additional accessories, whether magnifiers or iron sights. When it comes to their size and weight, you would be better off finding a compact red dot optic as it significantly reduces bulk on your rifle. You wouldn’t want to end up having a heavy or a large sight on a smaller weapon.

Design and Structure

There are two major red dot styles, either open/window-based designs or tube-like designs. The open window design is more low profile and compact that the tube-like designs. Also, the open window design is more advantageous as it provides you with an exceptionally wide field of view as there is nothing to restrict your sight picture, especially if you are using both eyes to aim. To add on that, open window red dot sights are lighter in weight and less bulky.

The tube-style design, on the other hand, has its perks. It provides added protection for the optic lenses and it is more durable as its housing is enclosed. In addition to that, it is more waterproof and is rugged enough to withstand rough use.

Power Source and Battery Life

When purchasing red dot sights, you would need to consider purchasing one that runs on readily available batteries instead of one that would need special orders. When it comes to the battery life, you would need to purchase a red dot sight with a longer battery life as it is more reliable. When looking into the battery life of your red dot sights, you may need to understand your outdoor shooting needs.

Conclusion

The best red dot optic for the money is one that meets most of your hunting requirements and one that satisfies your personal preferences. Improving your accuracy levels and speed during target acquisition would mean investing in the best quality red dot.

FAQs

  1. Would I need to leave the Holosun red dot sight in the sun to charge it?

The Holosun HS507C-V2 red dot sight runs on a CR2032 battery that is not rechargeable. Its solar charging abilities means that sunlight is just but a second power source to save your battery consumption.

  1. Will the Vortex Sparc II red dot sight work with an AR 10?

Yes, it will.

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