Best Red Dot for AR 15

A Comprehensive Guide

For years, gun owners have been using lasers on their AR 15 to help with accuracy. Now, the red dot sight is quickly becoming just as popular. A red dot sight replaced traditional iron sights to provide shooters with a much more efficient aiming method. The best red dot for AR 15  will allow shooters to acquire and aim at target faster and more accurately. A red dot sight is simply a scope with no magnification, featuring an illuminated red dot as the reticle. The shooting enthusiast using such a device will see both the target and their gun’s sight; there is no need to align the two. This makes red dot scopes faster and easier to use, but it also makes them more accurate than other scopes.

Sig Sauer SOR52001 Romeo5 1x20mm Compact 2 Moa Red Dot Sight, Black

$128.99 $129.49 in stock
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2 used from $119.99
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However, shopping for a red dot sight for your AR-15 can be confusing and time-consuming. There are so many different makes and models on the market; it’s hard to know which one is right for you. Not only do you have to worry about what type of red dot sight to buy, but also whether or not it will fit your AR-15 properly. If it doesn’t work, you’ll have to spend even more time and money finding the right sight. We’ve researched for you and compiled a list of the top five AR-15 red dot sights. Our list includes budget-friendly and high-end options, so there’s something for everyone.

Table of Contents

If you are in a hurry to purchase best red dot for AR 15, and you want to make the best decision, here are our top 3 picks:

Top 3 Best Red Dot for AR 15

$128.99 $129.49 2 used from $119.99 38 new from $128.99
in stock
Sig Sauer SOR52001 Romeo5 1x20mm Compact 2 Moa Red Dot...
$199.00 1 used from $163.25 35 new from $199.00
in stock
Vortex Optics SPARC Red Dot Sight Gen II - 2...

5 Best Red Dot for AR 15 (Ranked And Reviewed)

1. Sig Sauer Romeo5 Compact Red Dot Sight

Sig Sauer Romeo5 Compact Red Dot Sight
$128.99 $129.49
May 17, 2022 6:34 am
× Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com (Amazon.in, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, etc) at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
38 new from $128.99
2 used from $119.99

Specifications

The Romeo 5 from Sig Sauer is one of the most popular red dot sights on the market. This sight is made for close to mid-range shooting, meaning it’s perfect for AR 15s. It has 10 brightness settings (2 night vision settings and 8 daylight settings), allowing shooters to adjust their reticles depending upon environmental conditions or personal preference. The Romeo5 Compact Red Dot Sight is very easy to operate and features snag-free, low-profile adjustments that will not get caught up on clothing. If you’re looking for a red dot scope that is made of high quality but doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, the Romeo5 from Sig Sauer is perfect for you.

 

Romeo5 features motion-activated illumination to allow the shooter to have a bright red dot when they need it but not waste battery power when they don’t. It has unlimited eye relief and an anti-reflective coating that allows for a bright and clear sight picture. An auto shut-off feature turns the sight off after four hours for maximum battery life. The integrated  Picatinny mounting system on the Sig Sauer Romeo 5 allows it to be mounted on various firearms, making it one of the best red dot sights for AR 15. The low-profile design allows shooters to use their backup iron sights without interference from the red dot sight. The elevation and windage turrets are easy to adjust and parallax-free sight.

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2. Burris Tactical Prism Sight

Burris Tactical Prism Sight
$223.99
May 17, 2022 6:34 am
× Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com (Amazon.in, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, etc) at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
12 new from $223.99
1 used from $212.79

Specifications

The Burris Prism Sight is an excellent red dot sight made for close-quarters combat. The bright red illuminated reticle allows shooters to aim quickly and accurately, even in low light situations. The ballistic plex reticle has multiple aiming points for distances from 10 yards to as far as 500 yards. The prism sight is very easy to mount and can be used on handguns, shotguns, and rifles. It features a perfect optic so the shooter will not lose accuracy due to movement or distance. The red dot’s brightness can be adjusted for optimum performance in low and high light conditions. The AR-15 optic is clear and does not get distorted when shooting at long range or looking through it from an extreme angle. It’s designed to be lightweight and compact, which makes it an excellent choice for close-quarters combat. The prism sight has unlimited eye relief and can be easily adjusted without changing the sight picture.

Burris Tactical Prism Sight 1

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3. Vortex Optics SPARC Red Dot Sight

Vortex Optics SPARC Red Dot Sight
$199.00
May 17, 2022 6:34 am
× Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com (Amazon.in, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, etc) at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
35 new from $199.00
1 used from $163.25

Specifications

Vortex is another one of the most popular brands of red dot sights on the market today. The SPARC (Speed Point Aiming for Rapid Combat) from Vortex has an unlimited field of view and can be easily mounted to any AR-15. This sight features 12 different brightness settings, allowing shooters to adjust it according to their preferences or environmental conditions. This red dot sight is built to handle the harshest environments, making it one of the best choices for shooters looking for a rugged red dot sight. It has a parallax-free optical design with unlimited eye relief, allowing users to shoot from any position or angle without losing accuracy. 

 

Vortex prides itself on making rugged and reliable optics, and this sight is proof of its quality and commitment to excellence. It features a hard coat -anodized anti-abrasive finish, meaning it can take just about anything you throw at it. It also has a special coating designed to keep the lens from getting foggy or distorted when it becomes damp. The multi-height mount allows shooters to easily mount the sight without placing their iron sights in a compromising position. The sight is easy to zero and very accurate. The lens comes with a rubber cover to be utilized in a wide range of weather conditions. The 700 hours of battery life from a single battery makes this red dot sight an excellent choice for shooters who don’t want to change their sight constantly.

Vortex Optics SPARC Red Dot Sight 1

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4. Bushnell Advanced Micro Reflex Sight

Bushnell Advanced Micro Reflex Sight
$136.99
May 17, 2022 6:34 am
× Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com (Amazon.in, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, etc) at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
40 new from $136.99
1 used from $265.00

Specifications

Bushnell is another one of the most well-known names for red dot sights. The Advance Micro from Bushnell is a rugged and reliable sight made for close-quarters combat. The plastic materials used to make the sight are scratch and fog-resistant. It weighs only 0.14 pounds, making it an incredibly lightweight option for shooters who want a rugged yet small red dot sight for their AR 15. The Advance Micro has unlimited eye relief and can be used in any position without losing the accuracy of the sight picture. The red dot’s brightness can be adjusted for different lighting conditions, so shooters can always have the most transparent and brightest sight picture available.

 

The Advance Micro is easy to mount with any Weaver or Picatinny rail system. It also comes with four different reticles designed to be used in close-quarters combat situations, making this one of the best red dots for close-quarters and indoor shooting. Easy-to-use buttons on sight allow shooters to adjust the brightness, reticle pattern, and other settings quickly and easily. This red dot sight has unlimited eye relief and targeting capabilities that are highly accurate at extreme angles. This allows shooters to accurately hit targets from virtually any position or range without worrying about losing their prey. The advanced technology used in the design of the sight makes it one of the most accurate red dot sights that have ever been created.

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5. Trijicon MRO Miniature Rifle Optic

Trijicon MRO Miniature Rifle Optic
$498.53
May 17, 2022 6:34 am
× Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com (Amazon.in, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, etc) at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
5 new from $497.95

Specifications

Trijicon is the last brand on our list, but certainly not the least. The Trijicon MRO (Miniature Rifle Optic) from Trijicon boasts a unique design that provides shooters with a wide field of view and superior target acquisition in any lighting conditions. This red dot sight has a multi-coated optical lens system that keeps the glass clear and distortion-free no matter which weather conditions it is exposed to. This makes it an extremely durable sight that will stand up to any environmental conditions you can throw at it. The aluminum housing is strong and durable, making it ideal for outdoor shooting.

 

The positive click MOA dot reticle adjustments make it extremely easy for shooters to align their target and the red dot sight, making this one of the simplest optical sights on the market. It has an unlimited field of view with a transparent rear aperture, allowing shooters to have a clear picture of their shooting. The adjustable brightness settings allow shooters to easily adjust the red dot’s brightness for different lighting conditions. This allows this sight to produce a clear and accurate picture at all times, day or night. The battery life on these sights is four years without needing to be replaced, making it one of the most reliable red dots on the market.

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What To Consider While Buying The Best Red Dot for AR 15?

Out of all the red dot sights on the market, there are several factors that you should consider when purchasing one for your AR 15. Although they can be more expensive than traditional iron sight, they can provide shooters with a massive advantage over their targets due to being extremely accurate and easy to use.

Size

When looking for a red dot sight, you should always choose the smallest size possible. Because military-style rifles such as the AR 15 can be extremely long and difficult to maneuver around tight corners, it is essential that your red dot sight not get in the way of shooting accurately.

Weight 

The best red dots on the market are incredibly lightweight. This allows shooters to quickly transition between targets without adding extra weight, which could throw off their aim.

Material

The best red dot sights are made from the most robust materials possible. Since these sights are typically mounted on military rifles, they need to withstand extremely harsh conditions. This is why all of the best AR 15 red dots are designed for outdoor use and boast robust aluminum housings that can easily handle inclement weather without damaging them in any way.

Mounting System 

When looking for a red dot sight, you should check if it comes with its mounting system. A mounting system will protect both your new sight and your firearm from being damaged due to poor connections between the two. This allows shooters to easily attach the sight without buying extra accessories that they don’t need.

Reticles 

You can make four different kinds of reticle choices when purchasing a red dot sight for your AR 15: open circle dot reticle, open triangle, horseshoe, and bullet drop. The open circle reticle has no solid point in the center and do not use dots on any part of the reticle. This makes it harder to use in close-quarters situations but better for outdoor shooting. Open triangle reticles have a small dot in the middle of the circle, indicating the impact point. Horseshoe reticles are made up entirely of dots and usually work best at short ranges, making them ideal for indoor shooting. Bullet drop reticles allow shooters to accurately judge how much to adjust their shot, making them suitable for long-distance shooting.

Lens Coating

When looking for the best red dot sights, choosing ones with lens coatings meant for use in outdoor conditions is essential. This allows shooters to use their sight during inclement weather without damaging the coating. Lens coatings are not typically used indoors, shooting red dots because they can easily be damaged if exposed to heavy smoke.

Adjustments

The best red dot sights are the ones that can be easily adjusted for windage and elevation. This allows shooters to accurately calibrate their sight, ensuring that they will always hit their target no matter what distance it is at.

Battery Life 

The best red dot sights on the market have an incredibly long hour battery life. This allows shooters not to worry about whether they need to replace the batteries before using the sight. The longer the battery lasts, the more often shooters will use the sight without needing to change batteries.

Price

When looking for the best red dot sights, you should be aware that they are typically more expensive than traditional iron sights. Although this may be a large upfront cost to invest in a AR 15 sight, shooters will be able to save money in the long run by not having to buy extra batteries or repairs.

FAQs

AR 15s with red dot sights include many benefits that traditional iron sights don’t. These sights offer increased accuracy and more even distribution of light, making the target visible regardless of where you’re shooting from.

It typically takes about 20 minutes to properly zero in your red dot sight. This is much shorter than it would take for traditional iron sights, which can take hours.

Red dots offer more benefits than iron sights and are typically found on higher-quality rifles. Red dots allow shooters to quickly aim at their intended target without lining up the perfect shot.

Holographic sights are much more complex than standard sights. They are designed to project images onto a viewing glass, allowing shooters to have a larger field of view.

Yes, most red dot sights can switch between night vision mode. This allows shooters to easily adjust their red dot sight, whether it’s day or night.

Conclusion

When looking for red dot sights, it is essential to consider what you will be using the sight for.  For long-distance shooting, bullet drop reticles are ideal. Red dot and open triangle sights work best for mid-range and indoor use. When looking for the best red dot for AR 15, it is important to consider your needs and not just go with the most affordable option. We have reviewed the top five Red Dot Sights to help you find the one that suits your needs best. If you enjoyed this article, please like and share it with anyone who uses a AR 15 or is interested in learning more about them.

Author Profile

Gabriel Tackett
Double major in Engineering and Geology at the University of Minnesota. Experienced shooter & hunter for over 15 years. Certified NRA officer for over 10 years working as a writer at Ballachy.com .

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