If you are having trouble hitting your mark, then investing in the best pistol red dot sight might alleviate some of the pressure. Improving your shooting accuracy is no easy task, and there is no shame in taking a bit of extra help. A pistol red dot will give you exactly that with no additional hassle on your part.
In a real-life gunfight, fast target acquisition and precision aiming are essential skills. With a reflex sight, you will be able to improve on both of these fields. This nifty little tool can drastically improve your aim as long as you practice your shooting skills regularly.
Even if you are a skilled shooter, you can always benefit from a reflex sight. It ensures that you have a complete focus on your target regardless of your shooting position. During a high-stress situation, this tool can save your life.
In this article, we will give you a complete idea of this tool, along with our picks for the top-rated units that you can buy from the market. In addition, we will leave you with a few shopping tips to ensure you make the right investment.
Trijicon RMR 2 3.25 MOA Red Dot Red Sight
5 out of 5
Burris Fastfire III
5 out of 5
LeupoldDeltaPoint Pro Reflex Sight
4.5 out of 5
Vortex Pistol Optic
4 out of 5
Holosun HS507C Handgun Sight
4.5 out of 5
Pros and Cons of A Pistol Red Dot Sights
Before we get into the different products on the market, you should understand why you need it. A pistol sights offers massive utility, whether you are casual shooter or military personnel. It opens up a lot of possibilities for the shooter by drastically improving target acquisition and accuracy.
The major benefits of the red dot pistol sight:
- Long-range shooting: First of all, pistol optics help you shoot distant targets easier. With a stock iron sight, it is almost impossible to hit long-range targets unless you are exceptionally skilled with a pistol.
- Run and Gun: Your accuracy takes a severe hit when you are shooting on the move. However, with a red dot sight, it is much easier to maintain precision when shooting.
- Target switching: if you are switching between multiple targets, a red dot sight will ensure that you always find your mark faster. However, some people claim that it is not always true.
- Adjustable brightness: Shooting in a poorly lit environment is never easy. But a reflex sight can make it somewhat easier on your part. Since most sights allow you to set the brightness for the dot, as long as you do not go overboard on this setting, you can set it at a level that is comfortable to use in any lighting conditions.
- Night vision: This feature is not available with all reflex sights. But if you do end up with a unit that gives you night vision, you will be able to track your target in a pitch-black room without any trouble.
- Faster Focus: Red dot sights are a practical tool that helps you focus better and faster when the time comes. Regardless of your training, if you are inexperienced at a real-life gunfight, there is a high chance that you will have a hard time adjusting to the pressure. With a red dot, you will be able to keep a stable aim and focus in those situations.
In addition to the advantages mentioned above, there are also a few downside that comes from using a red dot for pistol.
- You need proper training with this device to feel comfortable using it. Without proper training, you will not be able to develop fast reflexes while maintaining precision.
- It is hard to use a reflex sight when raining. Just a little drop of water on the sight is enough to mess with the LED and distort your target. So you need to make sure that the dot is always pointing accurately without any interference.
- Reflex sight for pistol rely on a battery for power. Even if you use a high-quality battery, eventually, it will need to be replaced. However, as long as you switch the batteries after a few months, you should have no power failures with it.
- There are a lot of small electronic and mechanical components that go into a red dot sight. Regardless of the quality, there is always a slight possibility of these things going bad, especially when you are shopping in the budget range.
- Furthermore, if you are going for a cheaper unit, you could lose your calibration. With high-end products, this issue is rarer.
Our Recommended Best Red Dot Sight for Pistol [2022 Updated]
Now that you understand why you need this device, we can head into the list of reviews. In this section we will give you our thoughts on what we think are some of the best red dot sights for handguns that you can buy on the market.
We have gone through each of the units critically to ensure you get the best performance from it.
So without further ado, here are our top picks for your consideration.
1. Trijicon RMR Type 2 3.25 MOA Adjustable LED Red Dot Sight
To kick things off, we will be looking at a fantastic product by the brand Trijicon. For those of you who know anything about red dot sights, the name should be quite familiar. This brand has a high reputation for delivering quality gun sights without breaking your bank.
The unit features a reticle size of around 3.25 MOA, making it deadly accurate at close to medium distance. It also features automatic brightness settings and eight selectable options to manually choose the desired brightness.
Furthermore, the product comes with night vision and extreme brightness adjustment options to ensure the highest visibility.
The battery life in the unit is also excellent promising four years of continuous usage. It uses a single CR2032 lithium-ion battery for power, which can last you quite a long while giving you massive uptime.
To make the unit foolproof, it comes with a lockout button so that the RMR function stays in automatic mode.
Weighing in at just over an ounce, this unit will fit easily in any of your compacts to regular handguns. The military-grade construction ensures a durable and lasting experience with it.
It can work with Picatinny rail, right out of the box. However, you still get adapters for weaver rails or rifle add-ons to use with a variety of firearms without any issues.
2. Burris Fastfire III with Picatinny Mount
If you have money to spare, the Burris Fastfire III is a high-end unit that offers massive value. It ensures high accuracy and performance, giving you a plethora of excellent features to play around with. However, the price tag might not be something that attracts everyone.
It features a reticle size of 3 MOA. This size sits at a balanced point where it does not cover the entire target and gives you enough precision to shoot over moderate distances.
You can even switch the reticle size to an 8 MOA dot if you prefer better accuracy in close range. The option to switch the reticle size is extremely handy.
The brightness adjustment system is fully automated and matches the requirement based on the presence of the ambient light. However, if you prefer, you can manually adjust the brightness between the three preset settings to suit your specifications. The display in the gun sight comes with an extended roof to prevent water droplets from messing up your accuracy.
The construction of the unit is super featuring durable and lightweight metal. It is also waterproof and can survive weapon recoil without any issues.
It uses a lithium-ion metal battery for power and allows for elevation and windage adjustments of up to 115 MOA for a highly accurate shooting experience.
3. LeupoldDeltaPoint Pro Red Dot Pistol Sight
If you prefer accuracy over long distances, the Delta Point Pro sight by the brand Leupold is a strong contender in this sector. Every aspect of the unit promotes accuracy and precision, making it a perfect choice for sharpshooters. In addition, the price is quite reasonable compared to some of the competitors’ products.
The unit features two selectable reticle size of 2.5 and 7.5 MOA. With the smaller size, you can get precise targeting over moderate to long distances, whereas the 7.5 MOA is more suited towards close-range combat. You also get adjustment options for elevation and windage for up to 60 MOA range.
Using handgun optics is extremely intuitive, making it an excellent investment even for a new user. It features a smart battery saving technology that turns off the sight automatically after five minutes of inactivity. However, the moment it detects any movement, the sight turns back on instantly.The unit comes with a strong and durable waterproof metal construction. It can withstand harsh weather conditions and weapon recoil like a champ without any signs of wearing. In addition, the Diamond Coat Aspheric lens that comes with the unit is scratch resistant and enhances your effective field of view by 56 percent.
4. Vortex Red Dot Sight for Pistol
For the next product, we will be looking at the pistol optics by the brand Vortex. It is one of the higher-end units that you can find on the market that will cost you quite a few bucks. However, the excellent design, along with a fantastic set of features, more than makes up for the price.
This unit offers you a dot size of 3 MOA, which is perfect if you are a handgun user who likes to shoot from moderate to close distance. Unfortunately, the unit does not support multiple reticle sizes. However, you have plenty of adjustment options when it comes to the windage and elevation.
In addition, it comes with an auto-brightness mode that modifies the dot intensity to give you better vision in different lighting conditions. The user can also manually adjust the brightness between ten different settings. Furthermore, the lens of the unit offers a clean and full field of view, ensuring perfect target acquisition.
Looking at the structural quality of the unit, you can be sure that it is meant to last. It uses a 1632 lithium-ion battery for power that offers a decent runtime.
The thoughtful placement of the access compartment means that you do not need to dismantle the sight when you want to replace the battery.
5. Holosun HS507C Reflex Sight
Next up, we will be looking at a fantastic red dot for pistol by the brand Holosun. For those who do not know if you are looking for a high-quality sight without going over thousands of dollars, this brand is the one you want to go with. It offers a premium design and fantastic build quality at a highly reasonable price point.
The unit features a 32 MOA ring and 2 MOA dot that can even be used together, making it extremely easy to use for amateur shooters. This design ensures that you can acquire your target faster without any hassle. You can also adjust the brightness of the reticle easily to further customize the sight to your specifications.
It also features an automatic sleep function and shake-awake technology to conserve battery life. When you rattle the sight awake, it remembers your last settings and gives you a smooth and streamlined experience. It also comes with a solar power cell as a secondary power source when your CR20032 battery dies.
Construction-wise, you get a strong and sturdy CNC machined aluminum housing that can withstand anything you throw at it. Thanks to its unlimited eye relief design, you will have to face no discomfort while using it. Whether you are in a dark environment or a bright one, you should have no trouble in your target acquisition.
6. Ohuhu Red Green Dot Pistol Sight
The next product on our list is for the budget spenders, who do not want to compromise on features. The Ohuhu reflex sight will give you a bulk ton of settings to play around with while maintaining a low enough price to make it affordable for most users.
It has four different reticle patterns to switch between whenever you please. You can go with a 3 MOA dot, a 10 MOA circle, a dot and circle combo, and even across reticle. This option gives you a lot of flexibility, which in turn ensures you have an easy time acquiring the target.
The unit features a tubeless design, and the 3mm lens gives you a massive field of view. Whether you are rapid-firing or taking calculated shots with precision, the display will not let you down. Furthermore, you can switch between red and green reticle color instantly to suit the overall lighting of your shooting environment.
It comes in a lightweight design with a strong shockproof enclosure. In addition to giving you a great experience as a pistol sight, you can even use it for your AR15.
For its power requirement, it requires a single CR2032 lithium-ion battery. Overall, it is a great budget unit that offers a lot of versatility for the price.
7. Holosun HS507C-V2 Multi-Reticle Reflex Sight
To wrap up our list of reviews, we will be looking at another option by the brand Holosun. If you think the previous product was packed with features, wait till we give you a rundown of this one. The utility that you get out of this red dot sight is unmatched in the market.
Similar to the version 1 of the unit, it sticks to the three reticle design. You get a 32 MOA ring, a 2 MOA dot, and the option to use both together for greater precision over longer distances. When used in conjunction, you will be able to acquire the target faster due to the larger ring.
It also uses the auto-sleep and shake-awake technology, drastically improving battery life. In addition, thanks to the second solar power cell, you can still use the site if your battery dies suddenly. Furthermore, its massive brightness adjustment options span across 12 settings give you complete control over your visibility.
The 7075 aluminum housing used in its construction is extremely sturdy and can last you quite a long while without showing any signs of wearing. You can mount this reflex sight on any Picatinny style rails without any hassle. You also get a handy lens cloth to keep the display screen fresh.
Pistol Red Dot Sight Buying Guide for Beginners and Experts
With the list of products out of the way, we can focus on some of the critical aspects of the perfect pistol red dot. Considering these features will ensure that you will make smart decisions and be able to identify the crucial elements that will improve your experience with the device.
So without any delay, here are the things that you should consider when you are buying the best red dot for pistol for your requirements.
The first thing that you need to consider is the size of the unit that you are buying. You need to ensure that the sight can fit your handguns rail without any issues.
This feature is even more important if you do not want to take apart your sight every time you holster your weapon.
For pistols and compact handguns, a miniature dot sight will often give you a better performance. This form-factor is tiny enough to fit in any holster without trouble while giving you a clear vision to your target, ensuring precision and accuracy. Miniature red dot sight is the way to go for pistol lovers.
If you are using a compact pistol, you want to be on your feet, right?
With a lightweight red dot sight, you will be able to stay on your toes without any complaints. Besides, compact pistols and heavy reflex sight do not really feel well-balanced when you think about it.
However, if you are using a full-sized handgun, things can be different. In that case, you can benefit from having a bulkier sight equipped that gives you better precision.
Whichever combo you go with, make sure you balance out the two components so that one does not feel heavier than the other.
Do not overlook the construction quality and overall sturdiness of the product that you are considering buying. A red dot has to take a lot of abuse in its lifetime.
On the one hand, it has to constantly deal with the weapon’s recoil while, on the other hand, there are occasional bumps and drops that might happen.
So make sure your unit features the strongest materials that will ensure lasting performance. Some models include a rugged carrying case with your purchase. It gives you a safe place to store your sight when you are not using it to ensure it stays out of harm’s way.
A red dot sight that cannot make efficient use of its battery will not give you a decent uptime. If you frequently use the sight with your weapon, you want to ensure you have the best battery life possible. Otherwise, the cost of replacing batteries alone will set you back a lot on expenses.
There are a few features that you can find on some red dot units to make battery usage more efficient. So when buying your product, it would be a good idea to see if you can find any of these features.
Auto dimming feature: Auto dimming feature forces the sight to turn down the brightness when it detects brighter ambient light. By dimming the brightness when it is not needed automatically, you can get a longer uptime.
Auto brightness adjustment: This feature is quite similar to the auto dimming feature. Units with this option have a light sensor that detects when to lower the brightness or increase it depending on available ambient light.
Auto shut-off feature: The auto shut off feature is great for people who sometimes forget to turn off the sight when it is not needed. This features allow your red dot sight to turn itself off automatically after a certain period.
Battery compartment location
An often overlooked feature when it comes to buying a best pistol red dot is where the battery compartment is located. Having the battery compartment in an easy to access location can make replacing the batteries smooth and hassle-free. You can even switch batteries on the fly if the location allows you to do so.
Typically, it is a good idea to go with units that have a top-mounted battery compartment. That way, you will not have to remove the sight entirely when you want to install new batteries. It can get quite annoying for bottom-mounted compartments as you have to dismantle your sight before replacing the batteries.
The brightness and overall visibility of the reticle is an essential element to consider when choosing your red dot sight.
Without a clear reticle, you can never hope to get accurate targeting with your unit. Typically, all red dot sights give you the option to adjust the brightness to some extent.
The two most common brightness adjustment settings in these units are automatic brightness adjustments and manual brightness adjustments.
In rare instances, you can also find the option to adjust night vision and extreme brightness settings. We will discuss what each of them is in the following section.
Automatic brightness adjustments
This feature does exactly what it sounds like. Units that come equipped with this feature have a light sensor that constantly detects the presence of ambient light in the surrounding. When it detects brighter conditions, it automatically adjusts the reticle to make it clearer to see.
Although this makes using the sight extremely easy, it does have its fair share of flaws. For instance, it takes away control from the user.
For some people, the automatic brightness adjustment might not be enough. However, this feature saves a lot of battery by constantly optimizing the brightness.
Manual brightness adjustments
If you do not want automated adjustments and prefer to have a bit more control over the brightness, the manual brightness adjustment option would be a better choice. Most red dot sights have this feature to ensure the user can set the reticle according to their specifications.
Ideally, you should look for units that offer at least five different intensities; however, some high-end models can feature up to ten different brightness levels.
The main issue with this feature is that you have to manually adjust the brightness every time even when you go outside from a dark room.
Night vision and extreme brightness
Although these two modes are not available in all models, if you do manage to buy one with these options, you can benefit highly. In night vision mode, you can use your weapon with the red dot sight in a pitch-black room. This is a super useful feature if you are using it with a home-defense pistol to prevent robbery.
Extreme brightness is the exact opposite of night vision mode. Since red dot sights come with a large display mounted on the rear of the weapon, it is often susceptible to glares from the sun or other light sources. With this option, you can counteract the sudden change in brightness while keeping the reticle in your sight.
Finally, you should consider the size of the reticle before committing to a specific product. The reticle size is measured in MOA, which stands for minutes of angle.
The lower the MOA, the smaller and precise the red dot in the sight. Typically, the reticle size can be divided into three categories.
- Small-sized dot: Small dots are great if you want highly accurate shots over long distances. The MOA range for this size is between 1 to 2 MOA. This reticle size is typically used with AR rifles. However, these days, some handguns also use it.
- Medium-sized dot: The range for medium-sized reticle is from 2 to 3.5 MOA. It offers a balance of decent range and faster target acquisition, making it highly useful on a variety of gun.
- Large-sized dot: For large reticle size, the MOA is above 3.5. With this size, you will be able to instantly acquire your target. However, getting an accurate shot over long distances can be difficult as the dot is not as precise.
For pistols and handguns, both medium and large-sized dots are commonly used. Only a skilled shooter can get away with using a small reticle. So, you should consider your skill level and tracking distance before making your choice.
Using a reflex sight with your pistol will severely improve your aim and shooting experience. If you are a serious hunter, competitive shooter, or even a law enforcement official investing in this tool is an excellent idea.
We hope you found our article on the best red dot pistol sight informative and helpful in your search for the perfect product.