Best Pistol Red Dot

We were on a mission to identify the best pistol red dot on the market. This was a complicated journey as there are so many factors to consider. We knew that some of the most important things to us were battery life, durability, ability to hold zero, and brightness control. Through our research and testing, we were able to come up with a list of the 3 Best Pistol Red Dots to consider.

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One important thing to consider when shopping for a red dot is how it will mount to your handgun. Manufacturers will have specific mounting holes that will need to line up correctly with your pistol. If you’re putting a red dot on a Glock MOS, it should come with several different plates for various red dots. On the other hand, if you’re having your slide milled for a red dot, you’re stuck with that optic footprint.

Top 3 Pistol Red Dots

1. Holosun 507C X2

The Holosun 507C X2 is the follow-up to the popular 507C and V2 red dots. Compared to the original, the significant upgrade to this new version is the battery tray, which is now accessible from the side, eliminating the need to remove the red dot to change batteries.

Holosun is known for producing quality optics. In fact, many people have started using them in competitions, due to their reliability and durability. This red dot uses the same footprint as Trijicon RMR optics, so if your slide is cut for that, you should be good to go with this red dot.

The battery life on this optic is practically unbeatable, at up to 50,000 hours. With features such as Auto-off and the solar strip, this optic is meant to maximize the time between battery changes. This was a huge factor for us and we are calling the 507C the clear winner in this category. One additional perk is that Holosun is known for being one of the best red dots for astigmatism. In fact, one of our testers has this eye condition and can confirm that the 2 MOA dot is very crisp, unlike many others he’s tried.

One of our favorite features is the MRS (Multi-Reticle System), which gives you 3 reticle options: 2 MOA dot only, 2 MOA dot + 32 MOA ring, and a 32 MOA ring only. We found the dot + ring to speed up target acquisition, particularly at shorter distances. We’re calling the Holosun 507C X2 one of the best pistol red dots on the market.

HOLOSUN HS507C X2 Red 2 MOA Dot & 32 MOA Circle Open Reflex Pistol Sight - Durable Shake-Awake Solar...
  • Long battery life (up to 50,000 hours)
  • Solar-powered (runs outdoors if the battery dies + preserves battery life)
  • 2 MOA dot size / 32 MOA ring
  • 12 brightness settings (includes night-vision compatibility)
  • Auto-off to preserve battery life
  • Shake awake (wakes the red dot immediately when it senses motion)
  • Parallax-free
  • Unlimited eye relief
  • 2. Trijicon RMR Type 2

    Trijicon is a well-known name in the red dot community. They are known for creating pro-level optics for the general public. In addition, Trijicon is trusted by military and law enforcement, which certainly speaks to the durability of their optics.

    The Trijicon RMR Type 2 is probably one of the most popular red dots for competitive pistol shooters. It can be trusted to hold zero through heavy use and harsh conditions. That, along with a 4+ year battery life, this is an optic that you should consider if you’re looking for the best of the best.

    While the Trijicon RMR Type 2 might not have all of the bells and whistles of some other red dots, it can be trusted to work every time and last for years. If you have a little extra money to spend on a red dot, we highly recommend this optic.

    Trijicon RM06-C-700672 RMR Type 2 Adjustable LED Sight, 3.25 MOA Red Dot Reticle, Black
  • 4+ years of battery life with continuous use
  • Durable, military-grade housing
  • Enhanced electronic connections for withstanding harsh conditions
  • 3.25 MOA dot size
  • 8 brightness settings + auto-brightness
  • 3. Vortex Venom

    The Vortex Venom is the least expensive option on our list, but that doesn’t mean it’s lacking in quality or features. Vortex is a very recognizable name in the world of red dots and scopes. They produce some of the best magnified scopes for hunting and precision shooting. As the popularity of red dots grew, they expanded into this market and have been doing quite well at it.

    The Vortex Venom is offered in both 3 MOA and 6 MOA dots. We typically prefer a smaller dot, so in this case, we chose the 3 MOA option. It comes with a top-loading battery compartment, so the optic does not need to be removed to change the battery. This, like the Holosun 507C, is a huge feature for us. However, the battery life is said to last up to 30,000 hours at lower settings, so you probably won’t have to change the battery all that often anyway.

    One thing in particular that really stands out about Vortex, is their lifetime warranty. If anything ever stops working, they stand behind their product. We have personal experience with that, by the way. While the Vortex Venom might not hold up as well as a Trijicon in harsh environments, it’s a solid optic for the price. If you’re on a budget, but want a quality red dot, we strongly recommend the Vortex Venom.

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    Finding the best pistol red dot was no easy task. There are a lot of options out there nowadays, but not all optics are created equal. If you are looking for a quality red dot that will last for years to come, you can’t go wrong with any of our Top 3 options. When it comes down to it, it’s really about the application. Do you compete? Are you in law enforcement or military? Do you just enjoy a day at the range? Determining how you’ll use the red dot and the conditions you’ll be working in will play a role in choosing the right optic for your specific needs.