With just about any gun, a red dot sight will help you shoot better. Due to the fact that the optic lowers long-held skills like sight alignment and sight picture to just simply aiming a dot — generally red, sometimes green, and occasionally even gold — at a target, talents become obsolete. Red dots, unlike magnifying scopes, are reflex sights designed to engage targets fast at distances of up to 100 yards or more.
The best part is that red dots have progressed a long way. These optics were formerly prohibitively expensive and hence were not as widely available as they are now. For under $200, you can get a trustworthy red dot that will last 50,000 hours. There are also red dots that are less expensive but nonetheless of good quality.
For many, the question isn’t whether they want a red dot sight, but rather why wouldn’t they want one? So, let’s take a look at the best red dot sights on the market to help you select the right one for whatever task or goal you have in mind.
Best Budget Red Dot Sights
- Vortex Optics Crossfire Red Dot Sight
- Sig Sauer SOR01300 Romeo Zero Reflex Sight
- Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight
- Predator V3 Micro Red Dot Sight
- AT3 Tactical RD-50 PRO Red Dot Sight
- Sig Sauer SOR52001 Red Dot Sight
- Pinty 1x25mm Tactical Red Dot Sight
Vortex Optics Crossfire Red Dot Sight
The Crossfire Red Dot Sightline from Vortex Optics is yet another example of the well-known company’s reputation for producing high-quality sights at prices that you can afford. This Vortex sight, like other Vortex sights, comes with a lifetime warranty with an anti-reflective coating that provides a sharp and brilliant image surrounding the reticle.
The bullseye features 11 brightness levels and a 2 MOA size, making it ideal for precise shooting. This sight is also versatile because it comes with two alternative mounts: a low mount and a high mount.
Lastly, the sight has a 50,000-hour battery life, so you won’t have to worry about replacing the batteries very often. The main flaw with this sight is that it was manufactured in China, but with a lifetime warranty, Vortex Optics would gladly replace any defective parts.
Sig Sauer SOR01300 Romeo Zero Reflex Sight
The Sig Sauer Romeo Zero Reflex Sight is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a high-quality red dot sight for your pistol. Even though it’s pricey, it’s still a fantastic deal for what you get. Additionally, it’s not as cheap as some red dot sights but it’s also still very affordable.
It has a lifetime guarantee, so you’ll never have to worry about replacing it, and the motion-activated illumination system enhances the battery life and reduces the number of things to think about when you need to use it.
The 3 MOA red dot size is also incredibly adaptable, and the HD polymer lens produces a crystal-clear image. Overall, this is a fantastic red dot sight for your pistol.
Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight
Few businesses combine cost and performance better than Bushnell, and the Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight is no exception. It not only comes at a terrific price, but it also has a lifetime warranty, so you didn’t have to think about having to replace it in the future!
There are 11 distinct brightness levels, and windage and elevation adjustments can be made without the need of any instruments. Even better, it has a 3 MOA red dot reticle and a battery life of 3,000 hours on average.
While the optic quality isn’t as sharp as some of the more costly options on the market, it’s still a wonderful pick and possibly the best you’ll get at this price point.
Predator V3 Micro Red Dot Sight
The Predator V3 Micro Red Dot Sight is an excellent option for your rifle. It’s a budget-friendly sight with a lifetime warranty, and it has 11 distinct brightness settings that you can cycle through.
This sight, however, is not as good as Sig Sauer or Bushnell sights. This sight does come with both a riser and a 45-degree offset mount, giving you the most adaptability without having to spend extra money on accessories.
AT3 Tactical RD-50 PRO Red Dot Sight
The AT3 Tactical RD-50 PRO Red Dot Sight is a budget-friendly red dot sight with a lifetime warranty. This sight comes with two alternative mounts: a 1′′ riser and a.83′′ riser, so you won’t have any trouble clearing your weapon’s iron sights.
Furthermore, the 2 MOA reticle is ideal for precision shots, and the 50,000-hour battery life ensures that it will not let you down when you need it most. This sight would be better if it came with an offset mount, but that’s a minor quibble. If you purchase an offset mount, you may use it with this sight, and it’s a high-quality sight that can be mounted on any weapon.
Sig Sauer SOR52001 Red Dot Sight
Sig Sauer produces a number of high-quality optics, including the Sig Sauer SOR52001 Red Dot Sight. It includes a lifetime guarantee and a motion-activated illumination technology that prevents you from forgetting to turn off the sight while also extending the life of the battery.
This sight has ten variable illumination levels and a battery life of 40,000 hours. Furthermore, the red dot size of 2 MOA is ideal for accuracy shots. Nonetheless, this sight is a little on the pricey side, which is a huge concern for a red dot sight listing on a budget.
Pinty 1x25mm Tactical Red Dot Sight
The Pinty Tactical sight is an excellent alternative if you’re looking for a low-cost red dot sight. It has a 1′′ riser mount and 11 different brightness settings to choose from.
Furthermore, the battery life of 50,000 hours is among the greatest in the business. However, despite everything this site does well, it is a low-cost site for a reason. The main issue is the lack of warranty; after you’ve passed the Amazon 30-day return window, you’re stuck with this sight, for better or worse.
While not particularly high-quality, this site is reasonably priced. It’s because of that price point that this is an excellent value that is well worth your time.
Why Do You Want a Red Dot?
Unmagnified red dots, as opposed to other sights in the weapon marketplace, have infinite eye relief. What exactly does that mean and why do you want it? It means that you don’t need to mount them at a specific minimum or maximum distance from your eye, which means you will find the distance that is right and easy for you.
You can also adjust the height of your red dot so that you can see your irons at the same time. The dot is placed directly on your irons with absolute co-witness, while the bottom third provides you additional area for the dot.
Red dots don’t have any parallax. This means that as you move your head around, the red dot follows you, ensuring that you remain focused on the same target. You won’t need to be in an extremely exact position to get the shot this way.
Keep Both Eyes Open
With Red dot sights, you are expected keep both eyes open. When compared to iron sights, red dots are significantly easier to use, and you may acquire an almost infinite field of view while still superimposing the dot on your targets by using both eyes.
How To Use Your Red Dot Sights
Mounting Your Sight
You must check that you can mount your new red dot sight to your weapons before purchasing it. A Weaver or Picatinny rail mount is used on most rifles, whereas a Dovetail mount is used on many pistols.
After you’ve figured out what kind of mount your weapon has, double-check that your replacement sight will fit over the iron sights and other accessories. There are a variety of mounting options available to assist you with this. Low-profile mounts are a good choice if your weapon doesn’t have anything it has to look over, while absolute co-witness mounts are a good choice if you need to raise your sight significantly. In any case, conduct your research and choose the best mount for your weapon.
Zeroing Your Sight
The truth is that it doesn’t matter which sight you buy – you’ll need to zero in your new scope if you want to hit your target. Thankfully, zeroing in your scope is simple, plus it provides you an excuse to go shooting.
The distance you want to zero your scope in depends on what you’re firing at, but the essential concepts of sighting in your scope stay the same. When you make MOA adjustments, the only thing that changes is the amount that the shot moves.
The size of the reticle is one of the most essential considerations when choosing a red dot sight. Larger reticles are easier to see, but if they’re too big, they might block out the entire target, making accurate shots difficult.
Understanding how size works is the easiest approach to break this down. At 100 yards, a 1 MOA reticle will blot out a 1′′ target, while a 5 MOA reticle will blot out a 5′′ target.
While this isn’t a large concern for targets that are far away, it might make a big difference when the targets approach closer. At 25 yards, a 1 MOA article will blot out 4′′ of a target, and a 5 MOA reticle will blot out 20′′.
That’s why a 5 MOA target is ideal for folks who only shoot at close range, such as those installing a red dot sight on a home defense pistol.
If you’ll be shooting at targets further away, a 2 MOA reticle or smaller is recommended. It’s ultimately up to you and what you are most comfortable with. Prior experience and your skill level are also important considerations. Whatever you choose, just be aware of what you’re getting and how you’ll use your sight.