For tactical purposes, adding the best red dot for a 45-degree mount to your firearm will come in handy. There are several reasons to mount a mini red dot (MRD) alongside your riflescope aka low power variable optic (LPVO). First, if your LPVO breaks or fails, you always have your MRD as a reliable backup. Second, you boost your reaction time when switching from your LPVO to your MRD instead of changing magnification on your scope. Third, red dots are the perfect choice for close-range, CQC, and home defense.
If you own an AR-15 or other assault rifle, this article is made for you. In this guide, we chose the best red dot sights for 45-degree mounts and slapped some reviews together to help you out. Additionally, you’ll find models that suit every budget and some valuable tips along the way.
When choosing a red dot for your offset mount, it’s important to consider which features mean the most to you. You know, the features you can’t live without out. For example, you might like one battery-saving feature over another or one company’s glass more than another. As you most likely already know, you almost always get what you pay for when investing in glass.
Plus, we stick with companies that have healthy reputations and don’t slap their labels on cheap knockoffs. After all, the last thing you want is an optic to fail you during crunch time.
Best 45-Degree Mount Red Dot Sight Reviews
As promised, each of the following reviews provides you with all the information you need. And by need, we mean all those good pros and cons to consider because we like to keep things fair. We’re confident that by the time you leave here today, you’ll know which red dot is the one for you and how to mount it.
#1) Trijicon RMR Type 2 Red Dot Sight
RMR currently sits at the top of the mountain as the best red dot for an offset mount. First, if you prefer to use the RMR along with Trijicon’s 45º mount, the model# for the dot w/o mount is RM06-C-700672, and the model number for the 45º mount is AC32078. Additionally, the mount works with both RMR and SRO models. So, now that you know the model numbers, let’s quickly go over the features that make the RMR elite.
Firstly, Trijicon’s RMR is the most reliable MRD on the market. Its wacky-long battery life of over 4 years of continuous use on settings 4 through 8 is a huge advantage. Comparatively, other MRDS that come close to this battery life can only do it at lower brightness settings, not Trijicon. Beyond battery life, the RMR is built like a tank with forged aluminum. However, where it shines is the patented design that diverts impact force away from the glass.
Yes, other red dots are made with the same aluminum, but we’ve seen more than enough reports of glass breaking due to accidental drops with other MRDS to know that Trijicon is superior. After those specs, a couple of final considerations are its low weight of just 1.2 oz, waterproof down to 66 ft, top-notch clear glass, crisp dot, and a 5-year warranty on adjustable LED models. All in all, this MRD does cost a pretty penny, but it rocks in just about every way imaginable and will stand the test of time.
- The most durable MRD
- Longest battery life at max brightness (no requirement for battery-saving features or solar)
- Auto-brightness setting
- 3.25 MOA and 6.5 MOA are available
- Ultra-lightweight at 1.2 oz
- Trijicon manufactures a 45 degree mount for use w/ Picatinny rail on either side
- Waterproof rating to 66 ft
- 5-year warranty
- Does not feature multiple reticles
- High cost
#2) Holosun HS507K X2 Multi-Reticle Red Dot Sight
Now, if you found the RMR to be too expensive, Holosun’s HS507K X2 is currently the top budget alternative. However, that doesn’t mean it’s cheap or of poor quality. In fact, we feel this sight gives you the most bang for your buck of the models in our guide. Similar to Trijicon’s RMR, the HS507K X2 is super compact and lightweight at just 1 oz. On the other hand, if you want a larger model, then check out the Holosun HS510C.
Next, the multiple reticle system is one of the main reasons why operators choose Holosun sights. Particularly, folks with eye issues find that the circle dot is easier to see than a dot alone. On this particular model, there’s a 2 MOA dot and 32 MOA circle with options to use different combinations. After that nifty feature, battery life is a place where Holosun also excels, and most owners are big fans of the Shake Awake feature.
With this feature, your sight essentially goes into sleep mode to conserve battery life until it detects movement. In our experience, the sensor is very sensitive and can be relied upon. Plus, there’s the option to deactivate shake away to get up to 100,000 hours of continuous use. Finally, the lock mode is another advantage to avoid unintentional adjustments.
- Durable 7075-T6 Aluminum housing
- Up to 50,000-hour battery life with optional battery-saving Shake Awake feature
- 12 total brightness settings
- Multiple-reticle system for easier target acquisition
- Extremely lightweight at 1 oz
- More affordable than an RMR dot
- IP67 waterproof rating
- Limited lifetime warranty (5-year on glass, 3-year on electronics)
- Made in China (hence the lower cost)
- Not as durable as an RMR
#3) Swampfox Kingslayer Micro Reflex Sight
Moving right along, now it’s time to enter the under 200 bucks realm. For the money, Swampfox’s Kingslayer is a great red dot for a 45-degree mount. First, the RMR-compatible footprint allows for easy mounting and more versatility. Second, the Kingslayer features bright, clear glass for an optic in this price range. Also, there’s the option to choose between three models with different reticles.
The options are red dot, red circle dot, and green circle dot. Next, the Kingslayer Micro Reflex Sight holds true to its name with a weight of 1 oz (without the included 1913 Mil-Std Picatinny mount) and its super low-profile design. Moreover, the 22mm objective lens diameter gives you enough area to acquire your target with both eyes open. Currently, the red dot model features a 3 MOA dot, while both circles are 65 MOA.
Beyond that, the Kingslayer offers 10 brightness settings, an IPX7 waterproof rating down to 3ft, aircraft-grade aluminum construction, and an auto-off feature after 4 hours of inactivity. Lastly, the biggest drawback to consider is the battery life rating of up to 1,500 hours, though, the side-loading battery compartment does make it easy to swap batteries without removing the sight.
- Aircraft-grade aluminum housing
- Battery-saving auto-shutoff feature
- 10 brightness settings
- Multiple reticles available (3 different models)
- Lightweight at 1 oz
- More affordable than our top 2 picks (at the time of this writing)
- IPX7 waterproof rating down to 3 ft
- RMR-compatible footprint
- 50,000 round guarantee
- Battery life
- Made in China optics, what’s new
#4) Bushnell AR Optics Red Dot First Strike 2.0 Reflex Sight
Another great budget alternative to high-dollar MRDS is Bushnell’s First Strike. Firstly, this optic is an excellent choice for operators who prefer a larger viewing area and/or own an AR-15 style rifle or pistol. Secondly, it’s about the same cost as Swampfox’s Kingslayer at the time of this writing, and you might prefer the more well-known Bushnell brand.
As far as the perks of owning this model, Bushnell made some noteworthy upgrades in the 2.0 model. For example, expect enhanced brightness in daylight and the improved battery door secured by two screws. While the battery door upgrade might seem trivial, take a minute to check out all the cheap battery door complaints about popular MRDS, including Vortex (which is one of our top-rated optics brands). Additionally, Bushnell recommends the First Strike 2.0 for use as an offset optic.
Finally, versatility is a major advantage of this optic since it’s possible to mount it on just about any firearm in high and low-rise positions on a Picatinny rail. Plus, the battery life of up to 50,000 hours is lightyears beyond what Swampfox brings to the table and well beyond what most optics in this price range offer.
- A perfect budget alternative to expensive MRDS
- Up to 50,000-hour battery life (auto shut-off after 8 hours)
- Secure battery door with 2 screws
- Works well with all types of firearms
- Large viewing area
- Recommended for use on an offset mount
- Waterproof construction
- 1.62 oz w/ screws
- 5-year warranty
- You might notice a bit of glare in bright sunlight
- Battery life is still shorter than the top dogs
#5) Tacticon Predator V2 Reflex Sight
We know, you’re probably thinking, who is Tacticon? Well, the company certainly isn’t a household name, and we’re kind of going back on our word of steering clear of knockoff products. However, if you’re on a shoestring budget and want a red dot with a 45-degree mount in a single package, the Predator V2 does that for a mighty low cost. Plus, we like that this company is combat-veteran owned.
So, let’s check out what this MRD has to offer. First, you have some interesting reticle options, 4 in total, and there’s the option to switch between green and red. That unique feature alone is one of this sight’s greatest advantages. Second, you do get waterproof & fog-proof performance with an aluminum alloy housing. Third, there’s a solid number of brightness settings with 9 in total.
Lastly, the drawbacks are extra important to consider when choosing this sight. At 5.5 oz, it’s heavier than most MRDS. Next, battery life is a mystery and surely not on par with our previous four picks. Plus, it uses three LR44 batteries, though, Tacticon does include six batteries in the base package. And the company even offers a lifetime warranty. All things considered, this is a good starter optic for first-time owners and folks on a tight budget, nothing more.
- 4 reticles to choose from
- Red and green options
- The most affordable sight in our guide
- 45-degree mount included
- Lifetime warranty
- Not a good low-light performer
- Battery life and requires 3 batteries
- Overall optics quality
Since a red dot for an offset mount is a secondary option, it’s easier to take the budget route when choosing the best red dot for a 45-degree mount. However, and this is a big however, it depends on your application. Surely, you don’t want a cheap red dot if you’re an avid hunter, marksman, and certainly an aficionado. Also, if you’re familiar with how elite optics function, you’ll want to stick with Trijicon, Aimpoint, Leupold, and other top-shelf brands.
Outside of those brands, Vortex, Bushnell, and the lesser-known Swampfox are all good budget alternatives to the aforementioned brands. If you’re still undecided, take a minute to consider how much you value your glass, durability, versatility, battery life, and brand trustworthiness. If these things are very important to you, then stick with our top two picks. Finally, if they aren’t so important and you want to save some dough, start with #3 and work your way down.