AR-15: choosing optics

by Erik  

One questions I get often is, "Which type of optic is best for my AR-15?" There isn't a blanket answer to the question. There are several factors to consider when buying an optic for your AR-15.

First, where are you shooting? Are you limited to a 25 or 50 yard indoor range? Most people make the mistake of buying a traditional hunting style scope when they buy their first AR-15. It looks cool and the gun is meant to shoot long range right? Considering the additional weight and costs associated with a high quality magnified scope it's not always the best option.

Second, how is your vision? Older shooters will probably benefit from the use of a magnified scope. Even if you are shooting at relatively short distances like 25 or 50 yards. I have 20/20 vision and I'll admit that it's tough for me to shoot bowling pins at 100 yards with an unmagnified EOTech.

Here are three lists of optics I would suggest for first time AR-15 owners. I have separated them into lists by price and I have personally used all of these optics they work great depending on your situation.

Entry level optics - on the cheap side, but still decent quality

Pro level optics - mid to high priced, great build quality/performance

Elite level optics - high to ridiculous priced, outstanding build quality/performance

Some of the optics listed above are non-magnified and some are variable power. Again, this will depend on where you are shooting, but most of the optics have different models/options to better suit your needs. None of the optics listed above are junk. If you are looking for something in the elite level, then you probably already know about these optics.

Keep in mind, even if you have very deep pockets, an elite optic is not going to make you an expert marksman. Like everything else, you will need experience behind the trigger and a very good understanding of ballistics to fully appreciate and reap the benefits of those optics.

If you want to know more about what makes the elite level optics so expensive see my article on high priced optics.

No feedback yet