Picture this, you and a hunting buddy are staring down a group of wild hogs. You’re close enough that you speak in hushed voices. “See the bigger one towards the left? He’s mine. No wait, he’s moving right. What do you mean you want the one in the middle? Mine is in the middle now….” Suddenly the idea of a laser to point out which unlucky wild boar is yours makes a ton of sense. TruGlo added an integrated laser to the Tru Tec red dot sight to create a winning combination. Then, by pricing the combination under $250, it created a story worth reading—even if you’ve been burned by budget optics before.
By Jonathan Owen I’ve been burned on “Budget” optics, so when I first saw the TruGlo Tru Tec Red Dot Sight with Integrated Laser, I was cautious. I already have the bulletproof high-dollar red dot sights that you’d bet your life on should things go sideways in your world. I’ve even been told I’m an optics snob, and actually consider it a compliment. My whole life I’ve been a quality over quantity guy, so was it possible that I could even appreciate this TruGlo optic? Well, yes, actually.
The first question about such a sight has to be, “Is it any good?” I generally believe you get what you pay for and you’re not paying a lot for the red dot and laser combo from TruGlo. I’ve not driven my Jeep over it, dropped it from a helicopter, buried it mud and then powered it up. This isn’t that optic. But for the price, I’m kind of shocked at what you get.
Looking through the 30mm tube, the 2 MOA Tru Tec red dot is indeed a red dot, not a read smear. I confirmed this with a high end 3x magnifier I have on hand. That’s a good sign! With eleven brightness settings, I found the dot useful from pitch black to bright mid day sun. In bright sun, I found level nine perfectly acceptable and ten even more so. I don’t think anyone would be disappointed with the dot. The brightness level up/down buttons are located on top of the sight, easily accessible. The laser is powered by a third button in the row.
My optic has the green laser, though it’s available online for as little as $185 online with a red laser. In my experience, a red laser in broad daylight is borderline useless. The green laser on my TruGlo Tru Tec sight is visible in midday sun at 25 yards, even 30 yards but you have to really look for it. During prime hunting hours the laser’s dot is outstanding and becomes bright green beacon as the sun sets.
A phrase common to the shooting world is that “one is none, and two is one.” Redundancy is a luxury in some settings and mission critical in others. On the one hand the Israelis have used dot/laser combo sights for years. On the other, most hunting scenarios don’t need the redundancy but it’s nice to have. And, of course, the laser serves to identify your intended target to others.
You could get separate units and accomplish the same thing. Buy a red dot sight and buy a laser aiming device. You’d probably spend more money, and the TruGlo Tru Tec system is going to be more compact. Both the laser and the red dot run off the same 123 battery. TruGlo says the battery lasts thousands of hours with only the red dot powered. I can’t tell you how long it lasts, but if it lasts 1000 hours, that’s 41 days straight. Given the price point you should be able to buy enough batteries to keep you happy.
What happens when your forget to turn off your dot and become an unwitting tester of actual battery life? The Tru Tec red dot sight turns itself off automatically after eight hours. Or after an hour if you so desire. Or anything in between. It’s easily programmable, and you can even override the auto shut down entirely.
In my usage, I found the total package surprisingly nice. I’m not sure what I expected from the TruGlo Tru Tec optic. The optic itself is solid, waterproof at some level and comes with it’s own quick release mount. It has approximately .5 MOA per click windage and elevation adjustments under tethered and o-ring sealed caps. The laser zeros independently, so you could actually have two separate zeros if you can keep track of them. Flip up lens caps are a nice plus, but even better is the two year warranty. The mount’s locking lever is adequate, but I don’t think the Navy Seals would adopt it.
Okay, no one in Special Forces is going to request a TruGlo Tru Tec Red Dot Sight with Integrated Laser, but the benefit to price level ratio here is honestly impressive. With street prices around $250 the value proposition for the average hunter and shooting enthusiast is hard to beat. The battery is even included. It’s no where near Christmas, but I could see this on our annual gift buyer’s guide.