Last Updated on June 13, 2021
We’ve all been there: You line up your target and pull the trigger, only to have your shot travel wide or high. The problem isn’t your shotgun or even your skill — it’s the sight that you’re using.
A top-notch red dot sight can transform a mediocre shotgun into a premium choice, while the wrong one can turn even the best shotgun into a dud. With the sight being the most important accessory you have, it’s essential to get the right one the first time.
That’s why we tracked down and reviewed the eight best red dot sights for your shotgun. If you’re not sure what you’re looking for, we’ve got you covered there too. Check out the comprehensive buyer’s guide, as we’ll walk you through everything that you need to know!
|Best Overall||Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight||
|Best Value||Feyachi Reflex Sight Both Red and Green in One Sight||
|Premium Choice||Vortex Optics Crossfire Red Dot Sight||
|Two 1x22mm 5 MOA Red Green Dot Sight||
|Best Red Dot Sight for Tactical Shotgun||AT3 Tactical ARO Red Dot Sight||
Bushnell is known for making top-notch sights, and the Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight is no exception. Not only is it extremely durable and high performing, but it also comes with a lifetime warranty.
There are 11 different brightness settings that you can cycle through, and the 3 MOA reticle is the perfect combination of precision and speed. Even better, you can make both elevation and windage adjustments without any tools, and the average battery life is an impressive 5,000 hours!
There’s not much to hate about this sight, but it is a bit on the more expensive side of things.
If you’re looking for the best red dot sights for a shotgun for the money, you want the Feyachi Reflex Sight. Not only is it extremely affordable, but it also comes with two different reticle colors and four different reticle patterns that you can cycle through with the turn of a dial.
However, it is a budget sight, which means that it won’t keep up with the premium choices in various categories. For this Feyachi sight, that’s the number of brightness settings and the warranty.
This sight only comes with a 1-year warranty, and while that’s better than nothing, it’s far from impressive. But more importantly, it only has five brightness settings. It’s enough to get the job done, but more settings would be better.
Vortex Optics is a premium brand that puts out premium products. Its Crossfire Red Dot Sight is no exception. While it’s a bit expensive up front, it comes with a hassle-free lifetime warranty that helps offset the cost.
Moreover, this sight has 11 different brightness settings and a 2 MOA reticle size that is great for precision shots. This sight also has an anti-reflective coating on the lens that gives you a crisp, clear, and bright sight picture.
Finally, the battery life can last up to 50,000 hours, and it comes with multiple mounts that make it easier than ever to get this sight on your weapon. If you have the money, purchase the Vortex Optics Crossfire Red Dot Sight and never look back.
The Two 5 MOA Red Green Dot Sight is an affordable option, and you can switch between a red and green reticle.
Furthermore, there’s an anti-reflective coating that gives you a bright and clear sight picture, and the seven brightness settings are more than most dual-color red dot sights offer. The 5 MOA reticle is excellent for quick target acquisition, which is exactly what you want with a shotgun sight.
However, this sight doesn’t come with any warranty. While we do expect it to hold up, a warranty would provide a little more peace of mind. Also, the battery life is extremely short on this sight.
Nothing is more frustrating than constantly needing to change the batteries, and that’s precisely what you’ll need to do with this sight.
The AT3 Tactical ARO Red Dot Sight is a premium sight for your shotgun. Like most premium sights, it’s a bit expensive but comes with a lifetime warranty. There are two different mounting options for this sight: a low-mount and an absolute co-witness.
That means no matter what shotgun you have, you can mount this sight to it. Also, the 3 MOA reticle is an excellent combination of precision and performance. At the same time, the brightness memory feature means you won’t have to fumble with buttons when you need to use your shotgun.
Finally, the top-loaded battery is easy to change, but you won’t have to often with an average battery life of 5,000 hours. This is an expensive option, but it’s well worth the price.
A premium red dot sight for your shotgun is the TRUGLO TRU-TEC Micro Red Dot Sight. It comes with a lifetime warranty, but what really sets this sight apart is the auto-off feature. This ensures that you won’t come back to a dead battery just because you forgot to hit the off switch.
Additionally, this sight has 10 different brightness settings, and the 3 MOA reticle is excellent for both precision and quick target acquisition. However, this sight only has a green dot option — despite the red dot name. This isn’t a huge deal, but there’s a reason that red dot sights are more popular.
While this is an expensive option, it’s still worth the price.
Like all TRUGLO sights, the TRUGLO Traditional Red Dot Sight is a little expensive, but it comes with a lifetime warranty. It also comes with a 5 MOA reticle, which is excellent for quick target acquisition.
Additionally, there are two different colors that you can choose from to better match your shotgun: a classic black option and a camo. But this sight doesn’t have any premium features despite the high price tag. It’s a good sight but it’s not anything special.
An affordable and outstanding red dot sight option is the MidTen 2 MOA Micro Red Dot Sight. While it only has a 1-year warranty, the 11 brightness settings and multiple mounts that it comes with offset the cost. Moreover, the 2 MOA reticle is excellent for precision shots.
However, this is a budget optic through and through, and that’s incredibly noticeable with the overall durability of this sight. While it’s great for a few times at the range and field, if you plan on using your shotgun frequently, this sight won’t hold up.
That’s why this sight is not what you want if you’ll be doing a ton of shooting.
With so many red dot sight features and options out there, it’s no wonder that you have a few questions about them! That’s why we took the time to answer common questions and walk you through everything that you need to know both before and after you make your purchase!
You might find yourself wondering why you would even want a red dot sight for your shotgun to begin with.
First, red dot sights offer unlimited eye relief and parallax, which is a huge perk compared to traditional scopes. While they don’t provide magnification, this isn’t something that you typically want with a shotgun, anyway.
When you compare red dot sights to iron sights, the perks stand out even more. Red dot sights improve target acquisition time, are easier to use, and allow you to shoot from unconventional positions.
This is a huge perk because you’re often shooting fast-moving targets with a shotgun. With a red dot sight, you can easily track a target and pull the trigger when you’re ready. The only tradeoff is that you need to keep up with the batteries, but most of the options ensure that those moments are few and far between!
One of the most important decisions that you need to make when selecting a red dot sight for your shotgun is determining what size reticle you want. You measure red dot sizes by the MOA, with a 1 MOA reticle covering 1″ of a target at 100 yards. So, a 5 MOA reticle covers 5″ at 100 yards and so on.
While that might not seem like a big deal, the reticle covers even more when the target gets closer. At 20 yards, that 1 MOA reticle will cover 5″ of a target, while the 5 MOA reticle will cover 25″!
A smaller MOA is better when you’re looking for precision, but larger MOA reticles are easier to see and can speed up target acquisition. In the end, there’s no wrong choice, as it comes down to personal preference.
However, we prefer a 3 to 5 MOA reticle for a shotgun because it combines precision and target acquisition speed.
There are two main reasons that the number of brightness settings matter on your red dot sight. First, it preserves the battery life because you’re using the exact amount of power that you need instead of slightly more.
Second, if you’re using a reticle that is too bright for the conditions, it will start to blur. A reticle that is properly adjusted will appear crisp and bright, which improves your accuracy. So, fewer brightness settings might not seem like a big deal, but when the reticle is blurring because you can’t match the conditions, you’ll wish that you had a little more versatility.
Having plenty of brightness settings is a huge perk, but it also means that you’ll have to cycle through more options to get to the one that you want. If you’re shooting in similar conditions, you’ll have to do it over and over again.
A red dot sight with brightness memory turns on at the last setting that you used, saving you a ton of time.
This is a big deal in a couple of situations. First, if you’re using your shotgun in a tactical situation, like home defense, the last thing that you want to do is fumble with buttons when you need to use it. Having brightness memory allows you to turn on the sight, and you’re ready to go.
While this matters more when you have extra brightness settings, even when you only have a few, brightness memory is a huge advantage.
It doesn’t matter which red dot sight you use or where you mount it, if you don’t take the time to zero it, you’ll never hit your target.
Take the time to go to the range and zero your scope. It’s a great excuse to head out and fire a few rounds! The only decision that you need to make when zeroing a red dot sight for your shotgun is how far you want to zero it at.
When you’re shooting buckshot, you need to zero your scope in at a much shorter distance. We recommend 20 yards, but some shooters prefer an even shorter distance.
If you’re shooting slugs, you can zero your sight at a farther distance. We prefer 50 yards, but some shooters will zero it at 100 yards. However, keep in mind that you need to zero the scope for the specific ammunition that you’re using.
That means you can’t zero your scope with a slug, then switch to buckshot and expect it to be on target! That’s because bullet drop affects each round differently, and by switching ammo, you won’t have a properly zeroed sight.
Before you make your purchase, you need to ensure that you can mount your new scope to your shotgun. Most shotguns utilize a Picatinny or Weaver rail system, and most of these sights only use three or four of the slots.
This makes them an extremely versatile option because you can mount them as far up or as far back on your shotgun as you’d like. However, if your shotgun utilizes a different mounting system, you’ll need to purchase an adapter or select a different sight.
We’re sure that the best possible red dot sight for your shotgun is on this list, and we hope that we’ve given you enough confidence with the reviews to make your next purchase.
But if you’re still unsure about what option is right for you, why not go with the Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight? It’s our top choice for a reason, as it expertly combines performance and longevity.
But if you’re looking to save a little money up front, the Feyachi Reflex Sight Both Red and Green in One Sight is an excellent choice at an even better price!
Featured Image Credit: Volodymyr TVERDOKHLIB, Shutterstock
Robert’s obsession with all things optical started early in life, when his optician father would bring home prototypes for Robert to play with. Nowadays, Robert is dedicated to helping others find the right optics for their needs. His hobbies include astronomy, astrophysics, and model building. Originally from Newark, NJ, he resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where the nighttime skies are filled with glittering stars.
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