Best Red Dot Sight for the Money
The market is filled with thousands of red dot sight brands which have hundreds of models including reflex sights, holographic sights, and prism sights.
Yes, Reflex sights, Holographic sight and Prism sights, they all are red dot sights. Contrary to what people think, red dot sights is not a specific category of firearm sights. It is just a general term for all the sights that use red dots.
So, the number of products that come under red dot sights is huge, which makes it even harder to find a good one. But this is why we are here for.
Without further ado, let’s help you choose the best red dot sight for the money.
Know the categories of Red Dot Sights
Before you start digging for the best red dot sight for the money, you’ll need to understand the classifications.
As you know, the red dot sights are mainly divided into three categories.
- Reflex Sight
- Holographic Sight &
- Prism Sight
These three basically differs in their functionality.
The most common ones are a Reflex sight that is basically tube-structured where all the components are between the two lenses on each side of the pipe. These lenses are placed on the edge of the pipe which is why it’s easier for them to get scratches. Also, they don’t have magnification like prism scopes.
The second most common red dot sight is Holographic sights or Holo sights. These can be either tube style or open style. However, they are much more complex and slightly expensive than their common counterpart, reflex sights.
Lastly, the Prism sights are mostly known for their magnification and cheap price. However, people are still into the Reflex sights and a holographic sight more than prism sights.
Check for Standard Elevation & Windage Adjustability
In this day and age, you’ll hardly find any firearm sights manufacturing company who are making red dot sights without the adjustability option for Elevation and Windage.
Nowadays, an ideal adjustment option for the elevation and windage is clicked with 0.25 MOA, 0.50 MOA or just any other increment or decrement you think is fit for you.
There are several models which offer both increment and decrement at the same time and this opens up a lot of new adjustment options for the user.
The best red dot sight for the money will depend on the gun that you use to a certain degree. Where a little extra weight doesn’t do much to a rifle, handguns and pistols owner don’t have the luxury to “not care”.
An additional weight on the handgun means more mass, which leads to increased momentum and thanks to Newton’s third law, the thrust from the gun fires back at you with full strength. Besides, the heavier your handgun gets, the tougher it is to control the gun and aim.
That means the best red dot sight for the money will have to be a lightweight one so that you can easily handle your arms.
The parallax issue
When moving your head right and left without moving the gun itself, you usually come across the parallax issues that doesn’t let you target accurately.
But precise targeting depends on it and that’s why professionals don’t hesitate to spend few extra bucks to ensure the parallax issue is not affecting their performance.
Appropriate Dot size
The dot size hardly depends on the price or preference. It’s not like one size for all situation. There’s no standard for dot size so I can’t tell you to buy a specific one.
However, I can explain how the dot works in different situations and then you can decide for yourself which size is appropriate for your situation and application.
Basically, the size of the dot is expressed in MOA, which is Minute of Angle. A unit MOA is equivalent to 1 inch at a 100-yard view field.
Depending on how you will use and when you will use, the MOA number will vary. Just remember that a smaller dot will help your target better at a distance as the dot will cover a small area, giving you ample view field to track and target.
However, if you want to use your gun for close combat, a bigger reticle will give you the upper hand.
Ensure long-lasting battery
I would suggest you take a reflex sight over any other red dot because of the battery life.
If you don’t know already, Reflex sights use LEDs to light up the reticle. On the other hand, Holographic sights use Lasers which consumes much more power than LEDs on reflex sight.
Depending on the brand and the battery quality, a Reflex sight battery can last up to 50 times a regular Holographic sight, which is a deal breaker for many.
Consider going with a Head-Up display
A head-up display is an exclusive feature of open style red dot sights. This type of red dots is mostly Holographic sights.
Since the peripheral vision is not obstructed, the head-up display makes it easier to spot the target. That’s why this types of red dot sights are used by Policemen and hunters as well.
If you are not a fan of the traditional pipe or tube-like sights, these open style head-up display is the best option for you.
Shape of the reticle
The shape of your reticle doesn’t help you with targeting that much. It is based on how you like to target your audience, with your cross-shaped one, bull’s eye one or the star one?
The shape doesn’t really have a huge impact on overall performance. However, the manufacturer offers them for versatility in the reticle.
By now, I think you are well aware of the fact that I’m not going to tell you straight up. I lied down the criteria and some of the most important features for best red dot sight for the money. Now it is up to you to decide which one you really want to use and if you are willing to spend a good price for a higher end product for your gun.