5 Best Red Dot Sights for AR15s – Which One Should You Buy?

A red sight is a must have for anyone who owns an AR15 that they use for hunting or recreational purposes because that small device, which mounts on top of your gun, helps you zero in on your target. You can use one to account for wind conditions, see any hazards that might get in the way of your shot and set up the perfect shot.

Our top choice is the StrikeForce 2 from Vortex Optics because it functions as both a red dot and a green dot site. It comes with a cantilever mount for faster installation and an automatic shutdown that keeps the battery from dying.

Our Pick

The StrikeForce 2 is perfect for those with more shooting experience who want to hit the gun range or the backyard, but it’s also a smart choice for beginners because it comes with features that you can change as your skills improve. An O-ring seal around the lens forms a tight seal to block out debris and water, which keeps the lens from looking dirty. It has a better eye relief than other products to reduce strain on your eyes too.

We also like that this one sits closer to the top of your gun. This lets you line up the site without anything getting in your way.

Should You Buy a Red Dot Sights for an AR15?

Using a sight with a red dot has a number of benefits for those who love shooting with an AR15. We created a list of some of the top benefits to give you an idea of why you should invest one before your next trip to the gun range.

Accurate Shooting

When you use an assault weapon for the first time, you’ll notice that taking a single shot causes the gun to recoil and makes it harder for you to view your target. You need to focus on multiple factors to ensure the bullets go where you want them to go. With a sight, you only need to look through the eye piece, make sure the red dot is in the right spot on your target and then pull the trigger to hit that target.

Better Compensation

Even more experienced shooters have a hard time compensating for all conditions when shooting, including the wind in the area and whether there is any rain or fog. Using a sight helps you compensate for all those factors. You can use different settings to see the way the wind blows and the strength of the wind as well as settings that help you see through the rain and fog.

More Brightness

Though beginners seldom take shots at night, those who do hunt and practice at night know that it’s very hard to see. That is why so many use sights with a red dot. These products have brightness settings that work with a small light inside to help you see better.

When using one of these models, you can switch between brightness settings a few times to see which setting works best with the amount of light nearby. Most come with multiple settings that work during the day and in lower light conditions. Some models come with night vision settings that you can use in total darkness.

Less Eye Fatigue

These newer models also help you feel less tired and keep your eyes from feeling fatigued. The eye piece that comes on the site lets you line up a shot and track moving targets without suffering any discomfort or eye strain.

The Top 5 Red Dot Sights for AR15s on the Market

1. Vortex Optics StrikeForce 2

https://www.amazon.com/Vortex-Optics-StrikeFire-Cantilever-SF-RG-501/dp/B00HYRGXOY/

The O-ring seal located around the lens on the StrikeForce 2 protects the inside from dust as well as water and keeps both dry and liquid materials from damaging any of its working parts. A non-critical eye relief lets you more quickly move the sight to narrow down on a target and allows you to track a moving target without straining your eye. It comes with a cantilever mount too that lets you mount it flush with the top of your gun to see things exactly as they appear.

Despite weighing less than other similar models, this Vortex Optics product does a great job of standing up to your shots without recoiling back or moving in any way. It also has multiple brightness settings that let you adjust the brightness based on the amount of available light. You can use it with a red or green dot too.

We also like that this one has a battery that lasts much longer than those that come with others. The exact amount of use you get out of that battery depends on the brightness setting that you use. It will last for up to 6,000 hours on a lower or medium setting and up to 300 hours when used on the maximum brightness setting, and it comes with an auto shutdown feature that will turn the brightness down and off after 12 hours to save on that battery.

One of the top benefits of this model is just how long the battery lasts because you can get up to 6,000 hours of use out of that battery on certain settings. It has an O-ring seal that works in all weather conditions and will keep the lens safe from debris too. Customer reviews of this product are quite high with almost no negative reviews.

2. Sig Sauer Romeo5

https://www.amazon.com/Sig-Sauer-SOR52001-Romeo5-Compact/dp/B01C95I8N4/

With the Romeo5 from Sig Sauer, you can choose from 10 different brightness and illumination settings to use it any condition and at any time of the day or night. It comes with two night vision settings for seeing in the darkest of conditions and eight settings that are more suitable for daytime use. No matter which setting you choose, you can see the bright red dot cleanly in the center to line up a shot on a moving or stable target.

The motion activated illumination design of this model is another feature that we really like. This feature causes the illumination to come on at the first sign of movement and allows you to track a target without moving your hands, but as soon as the movement stops, it will turn itself back off. This feature expands the life of the battery and gives you up to 40,000 hours of use or even more.

This model is resistant to damage and problems caused by both fog and water. Fog or mist will never cause the lens to fog up and keep you from seeing your target. You can also use this model at a depth of up to one meter without that water causing any damage, and even if you drop the sight and submerge it in some other type of liquid, it should work perfectly after drying out.

Some of the pros of the Romeo5 include a motion activated sensor that turns on the light at the brightness setting that you selected at the first sign of movement. Once you stop moving though, it will turn that brightness off to save on your battery life. Depending on the brightness settings that you use, you can get 40,000 hours or more out of the single battery that comes with this one.

3. Sightmark Ultra Shot Plus

https://www.amazon.com/Sig-Sauer-SOR52001-Romeo5-Compact/dp/B01C95I8N4/

With the word “ultra” in its name, you might expect this sight to perform like a dream, and it does a great job in most conditions despite being more affordable than some of the others that we ranked. This model has a basic and standard design that mounts to the top of your assault rifle, but the edges actually wrap around the sides to provide more stability once mounted. You can use a red dot or a green dot based on which one shows up better in your shooting environment.

Made from a cast aluminum alloy, this product can stand up better to both hot and cold temperatures as well as rain and snow. It has a weatherproof housing that is resistant to water and other types of moisture, and this model features a shockproof design that actually absorbs shocks to keep drops and falls from breaking the housing or lens. You need to just four things to set up this site, use it and change between the red and green dots.

The quick detach design of the mount makes removing it from your gun incredibly easy. It also comes with digital switches for using the controls and an internal locking system that keeps it stable.

One possible problem you might find after setting this one up or even taking it out of the box is that the lens looks a little blurry. This is a known manufacturing error that will require you send it back and exchange it for a new one.

Don’t let that one con keep you from buying this one because it does come with some good positive features. It comes with a quick detach mounting design for easily attaching and removing from the top of your gun as well as a weatherproof housing and a shockproof design.

4. Bushnell Trophy

https://www.amazon.com/Sig-Sauer-SOR52001-Romeo5-Compact/dp/B01C95I8N4/

With a minute of angle of three and a 25mm wide lens, this Bushnell product makes it easier for you to acquire your target, whether you are closer to or further away from that target. Unlike others that come with a darker lens that makes it harder to see, this one has a coating on the front of the lens in an amber shade that allows you to see clearly because that lighter shade creates more of a contrast with your surroundings. A simple dial knob on the side helps you switch between settings too.

The lens on the front has a tilted design that works with the LED light inside to reflect the red dot, which puts it in a more accurate position to help you set up and take a great shot. It has different brightness settings that will require you switch between those settings to see which one works well with the current lighting available. If you use too high of a brightness setting, the red dot that you see may appear slightly blurry.

Weighing less than four ounces, this option is great for those worried about adding too much weight to their guns. It also measures less than three-inches long to keep it out of your field of vision. This one has unlimited eye relief too.

The manufacturer made the mistake of using adhesive tape inside to secure the LED light to the sight, which can cause a problem because that tape interferes with your vision. You’ll also need to make adjustments to keep the dot from looking too blurry.

Top features on this model include a lightweight design that brings its weight down to less than four ounces and a length that measures less than three inches. It also comes with an amber lens that creates a clearer environment.

5. Ozark Armament Green and Red Dot Sight
https://www.amazon.com/Tactical-Rifles-Shotguns-Ozark-Armament/dp/B010OMQSR2/

Those on a budget will love this model because it costs less than half what others do but comes with a design that the manufacturer guarantees will last in all types of conditions. You can use it on either a red dot setting or a green dot setting to set up shots more clearly without the dot blending into the surrounding environment. It also has five brightness settings that let you pick the amount of brightness that you need based on the amount of natural light available.

A cantilever mount comes with this site, which makes mounting much easier. This mount lets you sit the sight right on the top of your gun and use it flat against that surface, which helps you compensate for distance and height. It also has a four minute of angle (MOA).

The battery that comes with this product is smaller than those found on others, which helps keep the weight down and keeps you from feeling fatigued when carrying it on your gun or in your bag. A 35mm objective widens your field of vision and allows you to see more of your surroundings. This model also comes with a one-year warranty and a support number that you can call for help to reach a tech.

The positives or pros of this model include a standard design that will work with all types of AR weapons. It comes with a cantilever mount that makes it easier to mount it on your gun. You also get a warranty that lasts for a full year after your purchase.

One possible con associated with this model is that the sight is a little too touchy for some users. You may find that it actually responds too quickly for you.

The Best Red Dot Sights for an AR15 for Most People

Out of all models, the top option for most people is the StrikeForce 2 because it comes with an automatic shutdown feature that turns itself off after 12 hours to make the battery last longer. Other top features include an O-ring seal that keeps dust and other debris out of the lens, the option to choose between a red or a green dot, an eye relief that reduces eye strain and a design that sits flush or flat with the top of your weapon. This is easily the best all-around option for those shopping for a red dot sight for an AR15.

Our Budget Pick

The Ozark Armament Green and Red Dot Sight is our budget pick because it costs a small fraction of what our top choice costs. Despite being so affordable, it comes with a cantilever mount for fast and efficient mounting. You also get five brightness settings for use in any condition and both red and green dot options.

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