EOTech Reviews: Best Holographic Sights for an AR-15 & Other Tactical Rifles

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EOTech is the founder of Holographic scope technology.  They are really the only true makers of the “holographic sight.”  Anyone else telling you something otherwise is trying to sell you a load of garbage.  There have been some EOTech clones pop up, but they are not the same.

EOTech is the only true maker of the best holographic sights you can buy for the money.  There are other sites out there that falsely list Red Dot scopes as holographic sights – don’t buy into it as they are not the same.  If you are looking specifically for a holographic sight, EOTech should be your brand.

Holographic sights use a hologram transmitted by a laser that gets recorded in three dimensional space.  The image itself is part of the optical viewing window.  Red-Dot sights function differently and EOTech breaks down some of the distinct differences here on their website.

Holographic sights are designed specifically for close range encounters and are used by many members of the United States Military and Law Enforcement officers.  These compact optics are perfect for snap shots but still let you shoot accurately out to a couple of hundred yards if you have to. They are so small and light you can mount them on top of another scope as a backup.  Bottom line – as long as there’s a Picatinny rail, the EOTech will fit.

Of course it’s not as simple as just walking into a gun store and asking for an EOTech sight; the company has a large range. At heart they’re all military sights, designed for close quarter battle – but many of them are also excellent for hunting and are becoming more widely used by the hunting community. Here are our top picks.


EOTech 512 Holographic SightTop All Around Pick – The Reliable EOTech 512.A65:

Weight: 11.5 oz.
Night Vision Compatible: No
Battery: 2 AA Batteries
What we like: It’s EOTech, made in the USA
What we don’t: Nothing except the price tag
Who it’s for: Intermediate – Advanced Shooters, Hunters, Law Enforcement/Military

The 512 is EOTech’s most popular holographic weapon sight. It’s a neat and compact little unit – 5.6 inches long and weighing in at 11.2 ounces. The main body is a low-profile box that contains the electronics, projector and two AA batteries; the highest point on the sight is the hood around the actual optics, and even that rises just two and a half inches above the rail. This sight will not add much to the bulk of your rifle at all, so it’s ideal for stalking hogs in close country.

Something else you’ll notice is the weight. It’s not excessive, and comes in way below most conventional scopes, but it is substantial for a device this small. That’s because the 512 is an incredibly tough piece of gear. This is a sight that can shrug off some fairly solid knocks without taking any harm. It’s also waterproof to a depth of ten feet, so rain isn’t going to trouble it either.

Like all reflex sights it’s very easy to quickly come into the aim with the 512. It uses a red laser to project the reticle onto the inclined glass screen, so there are no worries about brightness or clarity. The reticle itself is a one MOA dot surrounded by a circle with four short lines radiating from it. Unlike a standard red dot sight it’s completely parallax-free, so if you move your head around the reticle will appear to float around the screen. What’s actually happening is it’s staying over the point of aim; as long as you can see the reticle you can put rounds on target. There are 20 brightness levels available for the reticle and it’s easy to adjust with the buttons at the rear.

Unlike some other EOTechs the 512 isn’t night-vision compatible, but if you plan to hunt while there’s some daylight this one is perfect. At a list price of $459 it isn’t cheap, but quality always comes at a price and this site has all the quality you could ask for.

CLICK HERE FOR PRICING & USER REVIEWS ON AMAZON.COM!


EOTech 552 Holographic SightFor Night Vision – EOTech 552.A65/1:

Weight: 10.9 oz.
Night Vision Compatible: No
Battery: 2 AA Batteries
What we like: It’s EOTech, made in the USA
What we don’t: Nothing except the price tag
Who it’s for: Intermediate – Advanced Shooters, Hunters, Law Enforcement/Military

The 552 is very similar overall to the 512; the main difference is that it’s compatible with night vision gear. Apart from that you won’t find many differences.  It does weigh less than the 512, but not by much. It’s also powered by two AA batteries, which can be either lithium, alkaline or rechargeable; lithium batteries should give you about 1,000 hours of use, while alkaline ones should be good for 600 hours or so. Controls are very similar to the 512 – two buttons on the rear let you switch on and off, or adjust the brightness. There’s also a third button which switches to night vision mode, giving you another ten settings.

There are two reticle options for the 552; the standard one is the same as the 512’s, or there’s a cross with BDC dots calibrated for the .308 round.

An option for the 552 is one of EOTech’s Laser Battery Caps. These are drop-in replacements for the standard battery compartment cover, and they have either a red laser or both red and IR lasers built in.

CLICK HERE FOR PRICING & USER REVIEWS ON AMAZON.COM!


EOTech XPS2-0Small and Efficient – EOTech XPS2-0:

Weight: 9 oz.
Night Vision Compatible: No
Battery: 123 Single Lithium Ion
What we like: It’s EOTech, made in the USA
What we don’t: Nothing except the price tag
Who it’s for: Intermediate – Advanced Shooters, Hunters, Law Enforcement/Military

If the 512 and 552 are small, the EOTech XPS2-0 is tiny. It’s the smallest and lightest sight they make, at just 3.5 inches long and nine ounces. This is partly down to using a single lithium 123 battery instead of the two AAs of the 512 – the battery compartment is a lot smaller, and that seriously reduces the length of the unit. It does reduce battery life slightly, too, but you should still get around 600 hours from a single battery. Two buttons on the rear of the unit let you switch it on and off, or adjust the reticle brightness.

The optical part itself is very similar to the 512 – the same 2.5-inch hood and holograph module. The XPS2-0 also has exactly the same reticle. There are other XPS2 models available with different ones, including a simple two MOA dot and some bullet drop-compensating options, but for hog hunting the dot-in-circle style is the best choice. Zeroing is standard EOTech, via two recessed screws on the right.

Again, this sight isn’t night vision compatible, but for daylight hunting it’s among the smallest and toughest optics you can get.

CLICK HERE FOR PRICING & USER REVIEWS ON AMAZON.COM!


EOTech EXPS 3-2Rugged Durability – EOTech EXPS3-2:

Weight: 11.2 oz.
Night Vision Compatible: Yes
Battery: 123 Single Transverse
What we like: It’s EOTech, made in the USA
What we don’t: Nothing except the price tag
Who it’s for: Intermediate – Advanced Shooters, Hunters, Law Enforcement/Military

Barely larger than the XPS-2 at 3.8 inches long, the EXPS-3 manages to be even more rugged. This sight is way beyond normal mil-spec standards; it’s been selected as the standard CQB sight of US Special Operations Command thanks to its extreme toughness and ease of use.

The EXPS-3’s single 123 lithium battery is installed across the front of the sight to reduce length; it’s held in by a simple screw cap that’s tethered to the body for security. Brightness has 20 daylight settings and another ten for use with night vision gear. The adjustment buttons, and the NV mode selector, have been moved to the left side of the body for easier access on a crowded rail. The standard thumb screw mount has also been altered, with a quick-release lever allowing very fast mounting or dismounting.

Again there’s a choice of reticles with this sight; the EXPS3-2 has a similar style to the first two models, but with an extra dot below the central one. That gives you a degree of BDC function, so you can stretch your range a bit further with this sight. It’s also night vision compatible, and like the others you can use an EOTech 3x or 4x magnifier with it as well.

CLICK HERE FOR PRICING & USER REVIEWS ON AMAZON.COM!


HHS I with G33 3x MagnifierEquipped with a Magnifier – EOTech HHS I:

Weight: 22.4 oz.
Night Vision Compatible: Yes
Battery: 123 Single Transverse
What we like: It’s EOTech, made in the USA
What we don’t: Nothing except the price tag
Who it’s for: Intermediate – Advanced Shooters, Hunters, Law Enforcement/Military

If EOTech holographic sights have one drawback it’s that they don’t provide any magnification. That’s not usually a problem for hog hunting, but if you’re shooting over more open ground there are times when a closer view of your quarry is useful. That’s where the Holographic Hybrid Sight comes in. This HHS combines an EXPS3-4 with the 3x-power G33.STS magnifier in a single, versatile unit.

Overall the HHS I is 7,7 inches long and weighs 22.4 ounces. It’s still shorter than most scopes and takes up less room on your rail, making it easier to add a night vision module in front of the sight. It is relatively heavy but in return you get a lot of capability. The magnifier is on a switch-to-side mount, meaning it can be quickly swung out from behind the holographic sight for close range shooting. If you want to take a shot at longer range just swing it back into position and you have a three-power zero parallax scope.

The reticle in this unit is a dot-in-circle one with three additional dots below the central one. These are calibrated in 100-yard increments for .223 ammo, but can be used with the heavier calibers suitable for hog hunting too.

At $1,179 this isn’t a cheap sight – it’s getting close to ACOG territory – but it’s a very versatile one. You can be set up for longer range shots but instantly transition to a snap-shooting configuration, ideal if you’re hunting over mixed terrain. The whole unit dismounts rapidly thanks to the quick release mount, and it’s as tough as any other EOTech product. If you’re looking for the ultimate hog-hunting sight this could well be it.

CLICK HERE FOR PRICING & USER REVIEWS ON AMAZON.COM!


Aimpoint ProEOTech Clone/Alternative:  The Aimpoint PRO Patrol Optic:

Weight: 7.8 oz.
Night Vision Compatible: Yes
Battery: 1/3 Lithium Ion (included)
What we like: Battery life, field testing/results
What we don’t: Not holographic, it’s not an EOTech
Who it’s for: Beginners – Advanced Shooters, Hunters, Law Enforcement/Military

Ok, so it’s not really a “clone,” but rather it’s the best red dot you can buy for the money.  If you are already looking at EOTech quality for a holographic sight but have decided that you’d prefer to go with a red dot optic, the Aimpoint Pro should be your first stop.

The Aimpoint Pro is a full mil-spec scope that’s designed for military and law enforcement use.  It’s rugged and can withstand a beating on a regular basis.  The biggest benefit with the Aimpoint Pro is the insane battery life it carries for a red dot scope.  It can run up to 3 years continuously on a single battery.  The caps are built in giving you protection from day one and help you withstand the abuse that will be called upon it when it’s not in use.  It allows the rifleman to see the target clearly with both eyes open and looking through the optic, something that EOTech also prides itself upon.

The only drawback that Aimpoint has is the size.  It’s bigger than the holographic sights made by EOTech and takes up more rail space.  That makes it less easy to magnify if you plan to add a magnifier for distance shooting.  Aimpoint brings an incredible value for the money.  If you are wanting to save yourself around a hundred bucks, the Aimpoint Pro is an excellent option for anyone considering a clone/alternative to a Holographic EOTech sight.

CLICK HERE FOR PRICING & USER REVIEWS ON AMAZON.COM!


So what should you buy – an EOTech clone or the real thing?

As we’ve noted in other articles, “you get what you pay for” when you are referring to any type of rifle optic.  EOTech’s no doubt carry a higher price tag than other red dot scopes like the Bushnell TRS.  If you only own one rifle, save the money and get a cheaper scope like the others listed here.  There’s no reason to blow $400+ when you can spend that cash on ammunition and get to the range to practice.

With that being said, if you can afford to spend the money now on a quality optic and have put at least  few hundred rounds down range with your rifle, the EOTech will pay dividends for many years to come.  They are one of the most trusted short range optic manufacturers for any tactical rifle and many law enforcement/military service members trust their lives with this manufacturer and their optics.  If my life is on the line, I’m not trusting it with a $60.00 scope.  It doesn’t matter if it’s for a survival preparation scenario or for tactical training, I want the best and the EOTech is the best holographic sight made today.  If I’m a recreational hunter or a beginner, cheaper red dot scopes are a viable option to spend the extra hard earned cash on some ammo and practice time.

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