It’s about speed, it is always about speed. 

Holographic sights other than being a later unlock in Call of Duty and Battlefield, are a type of reflex sight (along with red dots) designed for fast target acquisition.

But what makes holographic sights better or at least more expensive? Why do you want one? And, what is the point of this optic type? 

  • The reticle 
  • Your eye will focus faster allowing for snap shots 
  • Clarity of the reticle and speed of focus

Holographic sights work by creating an image or hologram through a bit of science that you don’t care about. The hologram when viewed by you is on the same sight plane as your target meaning you don’t need to focus your eye on different planes allowing you greater speed and accuracy.

Holographic Sights Working

It also allows you to see the image from nearly any angle and maintain your zero without a proper cheek weld. 

The US military has used holographic sights for several years alongside the ACOG and M4 Aimpoint because of their benefits such as ease of use, field of view, night vision capabilities, and durability. 

The hologram can be used to create nearly any image, while remaining crisp and clear so instead of just a red dot you can get full BDC reticles that are accurate at any range like a First Focal Plane scope. Meaning if you are using a magnifier or night vision your BDC is still going to be accurate.

Speaking of which, because of the clarity of the hologram you can get much smaller points of aim without the bleeding from red dots on high brightness.  

Like a red dot, a holographic sight is mainly for fast target acquisition with both eyes open allowing for the maximum field of view. However, a holographic sight does the job better, faster, and without obstructing your view thanks to the finer dots available.

Most Holographic sights are parallax free, and use a large circle for very close shots, we are talking feet here, and a fine dot for longer accuracy up to 500 yards. 

There are only a few true holographic sights on the market, and if it isn’t a true holographic sight you don’t get the benefit of the technology. Buy EOTech if you are looking for a holographic sight. 

In case you’re in a hurry, below are the best holographic sights that you could get for your money:

The Best Holographic Sights 

All the models have amazing clarity. EOTech did a great job making their optic clear and the field of view from the window so much greater than say an Aimpoint that I barely notice the outline of the sight.

The reticles are crisp, clear and precise.

I load the holographic sight on my AR-15, or a shotgun, and I feel faster, I feel more accurate with a 1 MOA dot than a 4 MOA dot.

I don’t struggle as much with the dot obscuring the target. 

Below are the best holographic sights and detailed review for your reference.

EOTech 552

The original holographic sight, the 552 is crisp and clear, weighs 11.5oz and takes AA batteries.

If you have the rail space there is little reason to pick another from the list. On our AR-15 test rifle it reached out to 400 yards with no problem as well as outshot our Aimpoint red dot for speed. 

I would have preferred a ¼ MOA instead of ½ MOA adjustments but for a red dot it isn’t bad. 


The little brother of the 552, it is much smaller but still functions like a champ. While many prefer the AA batteries of the 5xx Series to the EXPS’s CR123 battery, other than that it functioned perfectly. The EXPS 3 fixes many of the shortcomings of the XPS 2 series. 

I preferred the 4 dot reticle to the single on the 552, mostly because I switch to so many sights I can’t remember every hold so indexing is faster and more accurate. It will depend on your choice but when buying one make sure you know what you are purchasing.

The XPS 2 and XPS 3 are very similar but the improvements made on the EXPS make it the go to holographic sight for short barreled rifles and AR pistols, it even works well on a shotgun. 

Vortex AMG UH-1

Vortex Optics AMG UH-1 Gen II Holographic Sight,...
190 Reviews
Vortex Optics AMG UH-1 Gen II Holographic Sight,...
  • The AMG UH-1 Gen II is a close-quarters solution built for military and law enforcement shooters,...
  • With the UH-1 Gen II, you get an improved sight picture through the enlarged viewing window, making...
  • The lightning-quick EBR-CQB reticle is designed to dominate in close, and our FHQ technology...

The Vortex holographic sight is a bit heavier than the XPS and EXPS but weighs about the same as the 552 from EOTech. Vortex as always is known for its amazing customer service,  if you do anything to this sight and I’m not sure what you could do to make it non-functional other than shoot it.

Don’t worry you are covered by the VIP Warranty that transfers if for some reason you want to sell it, needing to afford ammo. 

The big differences between EOTech and Vortex is that the AMG UH-1 has an interesting reticle and the body is designed for the consumer market rather than the military, this usually means it is more ergonomic than the 552 though in testing there was little difference. 

EOTech XR308

EOTECH Holographic 552.XR308 Weapon Sight
11 Reviews
EOTECH Holographic 552.XR308 Weapon Sight
  • Optics: Transmission holography - parallax free; Magnification: 1x; Eye Relief: Unlimited;...
  • Optics: Transmission holography - parallax free; Magnification: 1x; Eye Relief: Unlimited;...
  • Adjustment (per click): 0.5 MOA (1/2" at 100 yds); Adjustment Range: +/- 40 MOA travel

The XR308 is my favorite holographic sight thanks to the reticle.

What is the point of the holographic sight if you aren’t making use of the technology to improve it over a red dot sight, and the biggest improvement by far is the BDC reticle on the XR308.

It is great for close range and long range precision. Unfortunately, the line has been discontinued. 

Wrap Up

If you are buying a holographic sight, you are probably looking for an EOTech first and your choice of optic will depend on your rifle, and accessories.

The 552 is great but if you are running a laser and a magnifier then you may want to look hard at the EXPS and XPS before you buy.

But for the 2 ounces of weight and massive battery life I would prefer a 5xx Series. 

The EOTech Controversy

EOTechs are in a strange place. Years ago there was a huge controversy about their durability, the ability to hold zero, battery caps coming loose under recoil, their massive power requirements, and, most importantly, what EOTech knew about their optics before they shipped them to consumers and the military.

I feel like they solved a lot of the problems with their optics and I have had no problems in testing but even at the range several people came up to me with bad things to say about the optics.

The Alternatives to the Holographic Sight

With improvements made to red dots and 1-8 power scopes in recent years, I would be hard pressed to recommend the EOTech as a sight for the majority of shooters when the 1-8x Vortex Strike Eagle and 1-8x Viper PST Gen II are available for the same price.

If you were looking at the EXPS3 with a magnifier, I would direct you to the Vortex Razor GEN II 1-6 instead.

As the industry and competition shooting moves away from the red dot and more into low power scopes these will serve your needs better. 

Last update on 2022-01-24