Red dot sights have become hugely popular over the past few decades, moving from a tool used only by police and military personnel to something that many competition shooters and hunters now rely on. Although a wide range of companies produce various types of red dot sights nowadays, Aimpoint and EOTech are generally considered to be head and shoulders above the rest of the field. This means that for many hunters or other shooters looking to purchase a red dot sight, the choice is often a toss-up between these two. So, to help eliminate the confusion, we’re going to do a comparison of Aimpoint vs EOTech to see how the two brands stack up against each other.
In truth, you really can’t go wrong with either brand, both of which produce a wide range of excellent products. Still, there are some quite major differences between Aimpoint red dot sights and EOTech, while each brand also has its own positives and (minor) negatives. Nonetheless, both work exceptionally well for fast engagement of targets, whether mounted on a rifle or shotgun. As well, both companies also make smaller versions that can even be used on larger handguns.
Despite their differences, both EOTech and Aimpoint red dot sights also have a lot in common, including the fact that both are 1x magnification sights, meaning you’ll see the exact same picture through the sight as you will with your other eye. The sights are also parallax free, which means that the reticle stays in the same place no matter what angle you look at it from. Both sights are also illuminated and feature a red dot reticle, hence the name. The brightness of the reticle is adjustable, and both companies produce numerous models with additional brightness settings designed for use with night vision.
Aimpoint vs EOTech
- EOTECH XPS3 Holographic Weapon Sight
- Night Vision Compatible - Works with all Gen 1-3 night vision devices
- Compact Design - Leaves more rail space for rear iron sights or...
- Mount - Compatible with both 1" Weaver and MIL-STD 1913 Rails
- EOTECH HWS Prestige Warranty - Comes with 10 year limited warranty
- Advanced optical lenses with a protective front window
- 2 MOA dot for close combat and long distance engagement
- Matches perfectly with Aimpoint 3XMag-1 and 6XMag-1 magnifiers
- Excellent light transmission
- Extremely robust housing design, same ruggedness as the CompM4 sights...
Although both companies produce a wide range of different red dot sights, to make the comparison a bit easier, this post will focus on the EOTech XPS3-0 and the Aimpoint CompM4 as these are one of each company’s most popular models. Still, there aren’t all that many differences from model to model for each brand, so much of this information can be applied across the board.
Before we get into looking at the more technical details of each brand, it’s first important to note one of the biggest differences between the two brands. While both companies technically produce ‘red dot sights,’ each produces a distinctly different type of product.
Aimpoint sights are what’s known as a reflex sight, where an LED light is reflected onto the front lens to create the reticle. EOTech sights, on the other hand, use a holographic projection system. In this system, a laser diode illuminates the holographic reticle on a special film attached to the inside of the front piece of glass.
Although each type of projection system provides its own distinct advantages and drawbacks, based solely on the performance of the projection system itself, EOTech would have to be the winner in this category. The LED light used in the Aimpoint sights tends to make the red dot looked a bit washed out, especially compared to the ultra-crisp, clear reticle you get with holographic red dot sights. As well, EOTech holographic sights are made out perfectly clear glass, providing a much clearer, higher definition image. With reflex sights, the mirrored lens causes the picture to be not quite as sharp and also washed out.
Like most red dot sights, Aimpoint products are the standard tube-style sight, as the curved, mirrored lens necessitates this shape. EOTech holographic sights are generally rectangular shaped, which generally allows the objective window to be bigger and easier to see through. For this reason, EOTech sights generally offer slightly faster target acquisition due to this superior design.
EOTech sights are also generally a bit smaller and weigh slightly less. For the two models we’re comparing, the XPS3-0 is only 2 inches long and weighs 8 ounces, compared to the CompM4 at 4.7 inches long and 9.3 ounces in weight (11.8 ounces including the mount). The smaller size of the EOTech can definitely be a benefit in some cases, but again, the differences are still fairly minor.
Durability is obviously an important factor in any hunting product, as you don’t want your sight to suddenly break when you’re out in the field. Of course, with a red dot sight, you could always use iron sights as a backup, but obviously you still want to make sure you’re buying something that is strong and durable enough to handle a bit of rough treatment.
Luckily, this is one area where you won’t have to worry, as both Aimpoint and EOTech are known for producing products that are nearly indestructible. Durability also happens to be one area that is a virtual toss-up between the two, as all Aimpoint and EOTech sights are built to military specifications. In fact, most have been fully battle tested for strength and durability due to the companies’ close associations with the US military .
Waterproof, shockproof and fog proof internal optics all ensure that no matter which you choose, your sight should stand the test of time. However, the nod still has to go to Aimpoint in terms of durability for two reasons. First, the cylinder-shaped design generally seems to be a bit stronger and less vulnerable than the EOTech, even if both should easily be able to handle whatever you throw at them. As well, Aimpoint sights are generally waterproof up to a much lower depth than EOTech. In the case of the CompM4, we’re talking about waterproof to a depth of 150 feet compared to only 33 feet for the EOTech XPS3-0. Still, it’s not likely you’ll ever need to take your gun underwater to such depths, so this probably isn’t all that important to the average hunter.
The choice of reticle style is something that can actually play quite a big role in overall accuracy. This is especially true with 1x magnification sights, as the right reticle can offer ultra-fast target acquisition for shorter range shots and improved accuracy for longer distances. Of course, all of this ultimately depends on the skill of the shooter, but it still doesn’t hurt to give yourself an added advantage wherever you can.
The Aimpoint M4, like most other reflex sights, features a standard dot reticle. The dot measures 2 MOA, which is generally small enough to offer decent targeting and accuracy for longer distance shots, while still large enough to allow for fairly fast target acquisition. This reticle is most definitely useful and is generally what most people imagine a red dot sight to be.
While the Aimpoint reticle is decent, virtually no red dot sight can compare with the unique EOTech reticle. Like Aimpoint, it features the standard centered red dot. However, EOTech uses a smaller 1 MOA dot, which is surrounded by a larger 65 MOA red circle. The 1 MOA dot is the smallest you’ll find on any electronic sight, offering ultimate precision by ensuring that the dot doesn’t obscure the target so you can place your shots more precisely. As well, the red circle surrounding it helps with fast target acquisition, and is also ideal for close range shots. Simply fill up the circle with your target and fire.
This is one area where the competition isn’t even close, as Aimpoint is by far superior in every respect. The EOTech XPS3-0 uses one 123 lithium battery to power its holographic projection system, which provides a quite respectable 600 hours of battery life at the nominal power setting. Still, while 600 hours may seem like a lot, the fact is that the superior quality and technology of the holographic projection system requires much more energy than the simple LED used in reflex sights like Aimpoint.
Just how much of a difference is there between the two? Well, compared to the mere 600 hours on the XPS3-0, the CompM4 can run for approximately 80,000 hours on one single AA battery! That’s over eight years of continuous usage. And if you for some reason plan on only using it on the night vision settings you can expect somewhere around 500,000 hours of battery life.
600hrs EOTech XPS3-0
80000hrs Aimpoint CompM4
It’s not just these two particular models where Aimpoint is the clear winner, as the simple fact is that reflex sights always greatly outperform holographic sights in terms of battery life.
This is one area where it really depends on what you’re more comfortable with. Although there is a small bit of variation, for the most part each company uses the same style of controls across the majority of their models. For Aimpoint, a simple dial is used to turn the sight on and adjust the brightness. With the CompM4, you’ll get 16 different brightness settings—nine daytime and seven night vision.
The XPS3-0, like most other EOTech holographic sights, has buttons that are used to turn the sight on and adjust the brightness. It includes a total of 30 brightness settings, 20 daytime and 10 night vision. The fact that you have a greater range of brightness settings could definitely come in handy, although it’s hard to see when you could ever need the brightest setting, as it seems likely to nearly blind you it’s so strong.
Again, both types of controls have their merits, but for my money, the simplicity of the Aimpoint is to be preferred.
Although it may surprise you from what you’ve read, EOTech sights generally tend to be at least a bit more affordable than Aimpoint. This is the case when comparing the XSP3-0 and the CompM4, as well as many others, and you can often expect to pay up to several hundred dollars less when you choose EOTech. Still, there’s definitely a reason that so many people continue to fork over the cash for Aimpoint products, as they are undoubtedly worth it. So, although EOTech may be slightly cheaper, price shouldn’t be your primary deciding factor if you’ve got money to spend.
Aimpoint vs EOTech: Judging the Overall Winner
You really can’t go wrong no matter which one of the two you choose. EOTech came out slightly ahead in more of the categories, but this has more to do with the fact that it is a holographic sight than anything else. Therefore, it’s important to judge things for yourself, deciding which factors are most important to you and making your purchase accordingly. Don’t worry, you really can’t go wrong.