Have you seen an ar-15 in stock condition? I bet not. Consider yourself lucky, if you have got to see a stock AR. Jokes apart, ARs are known for the extent of customization they offer & there can’t be an AR-15 owner who hasn’t customized his firearm. That’s how common it is.
As a rule of thumb when you have too many choices, you get confused and often end up not deciding for a long time. This happens with AR-15s too. AR-15 owners with unlimited options available for customization in hand are notorious for cooking dilemmas out of thin air.
I don’t intend to solve these dilemmas as the list goes on endlessly. But I can help you find a better value for money proposition. That’s something really worth right? Considering all others spending big over unnecessary aesthetics. No more loose talks, we are talking about optics here.
Choosing the right optic for your AR-15
Optics has been a topic of controversy and misunderstanding over the past few years. The reason being every marksman has their own reasons for choosing the best optic set up. Believe it or not, there is nothing called a perfect optic, it is all about personal preference
To avoid confusion, we restrict our observation around optics with a particular emphasis on the classes of optics.
The 5 different classes of optics
We intend to give a bird’s view of types of optics and their possible uses in situations. Let’s dig the hole a little deeper:
There are 5 classes in AR-15 optics each differing on so many parameters. I won’t be brave enough to suggest to you the ‘best option, but I can really help you pick your best choice.
- Class I: Iron sight replacements
- Class II: Low power fixed magnification
- Class III: Low power variable magnification
- Class IV: Mid to high magnification
- Class V: Digital Hybrid
Iron sight is commonly known as a red dot excelling within 250 yards. The purpose is to give you a dot on the visual plane and an easy-to-view picture. They don’t assist with any magnification, meaning you can have both your eyes open and keep all the focus on the target.
It is basically a set-and-forget type, where you don’t have to make any adjustments after the installation. It offers parallax resistance to some extent and of course not, parallax error has not been fully taken care of. Considered to be a first-generation combat optic, the key feature is the speedy acquisition of the sight picture.
You will bite the stone with a red dot when your vision is not perfect. You struggle to find targets as there is no aid from magnification. Being a general-purpose defensive weapon, one with astigmatism will end up seeing a blob or cluster in place of a crisp red dot.
Ever complained about the weight, bulkiness of class I optics? Class II can be a solution. They can take a beating, keeping an edge above those traditional red dots. Class II optics have reticles on them that estimate where each shot will land, which is a luxury in precision shooting.
You must use these optics within a range of 50-300 m. Anything more than that, you are entering a territory class II optics aren’t really built for & it will lose precision and accuracy.
Class III optics consume more time than usual depending on the manufacturer. They can magnify up to 4x times and they come with different types of reticule patterns and illumination options. Known for their versatility, they lag in the time they consume for a swap or adjustment. They are also available in 6x and 8x options.
They of course add weight to the shooting set up which will take some time to be accustomed to. What bothers most marksmen is the additional gain of 1 or 2 pounds which when swapped or adjusted is prone to mechanical failure. Also, since they work based on refraction, the errors such as eye relief, exit pupil, and parallax cannot be eliminated.
They resemble well enough with class II with a few notable changes on offer. There will not be any ‘no magnification’ mode in them means the lowest magnification will be greater than 1x. The higher magnification will be above 9x, can range up to 16x or beyond. Reticles will be Minute of Angle (MOA) design and will have turrets for range and windage adjustments.
Those who stand and shoot, especially on the range will find them advantageous rather than on the field. Their use is limited to supported positions where you can counterbalance the incumbent instabilities.
A long-range or precision shooting format where a bench or stable support is available in the best situation when a class IV optic can be clubbed with ar-15.
Class V optics are the new kids on the block and were launched in recent years. They are the future of optics, with the incorporation of computers, and displays to completely revolutionize your aim.
These optics have an in-built computer in them that can give the shooter complete information on the exact distance from the target, a digital image of the target, and more. Advanced variants of Class V optics also have an option to automatically fire when the shooter finds the desired point of aim.
While Class V optics are worth investing your money on, know that you are gonna have to depend on electronics a lot. If there were to be any issues with the electronics, the scope will go blind.
To sum up
Ar-15 enthusiasts tend to splash their hard-earned money on mods and customs that offer no or the least returns. Unlike investing money on mods & customization, investing in the right optics will return you well enough. The key is not to find the best or the most expensive one in the market, but to find the right one that will cater to your unique requirements.
We welcome you to visit us and find your perfect fit from the range of optics we deal with. We offer the best prices at the best quality with a record of the best after-sales assistance.