Red Dot -vs- Laser

Try this…work towards using your red dot to verify your sight picture, not to search for the target.


Hello and welcome to the community.
I’m not a fan of a laser for several reasons primarily the following: lasers work both ways. If the threat didn’t know where you were, they do now and have great aim point for return fire especially in lower light conditions. IMO, acquiring your target with a laser takes more time than utilizing your natural point of aim. Time you may not have if the gun fight is on. Now, if your natural point of aim sucks, then a laser may be good for a training aid to develop you natural aim point but I am not convinced it is an asset in real world defensive scenarios. Just my $0.02 :slightly_smiling_face:


Laser on revolver is the standard
Red dot and micro red dot are the standard for concealed carry weapons. Especially ones with really short sight radii. My home defense is a Taurus G3 toro with the holosun 507 c I think shake awake and solar cell brightness adjuster I love how it works . I pick it up both eyes open bring weapon to line of sight and there’s the dot and bang there’s the sight picture. Put in the reps and you can’t go wrong with either and if your using a laser on a pistol trying to make hits at 50 to 100 yards I feel that is a fool’s errand chances are if your that far away you are to be seeking cover or some other means to get out of there. Laser on a rifle at distance better than using it on a gun the laser is just a ball park at close range the red dot is where they are supposed to go


Since the red dot vs. laser has already been covered substantially, I am going to address another point you made. Since you find the 365 a bit small for your hands, I would suggest looking at a 365XL. I have a Shield for my EDC and found that the XL is quite compatible as far as size goes, and it’s very comfortable to shoot. I have fairly large hands (not in the “able to conceal a basketball” size range) and the XL is just a good size.


Believe it or not the human eye picks up the green spectrum of light better than red as red generally blends and diffuses at distance. Where as green does not in our eyes :office:


That is why I have on demand lasers,they have an on/off button you press with your finger,my pistols have the button on the grip and my rifles have the buttyon on the fore arm


BTW, I just re-researched some things…

Aaron Cowan and Sage Dynamics:

Their white paper on pistol mounted red dots

If I am reading this correctly, they recorded a 100% failure rate across 5 delta point pros

And to quote the paper

"While testing continues on functional MRDS, the two manufacturers that continue to provide reliable
service are the Trijicon RMR, the Holosun 507/508/509 and Aimpoint ACRO. "

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I’ve been shooting for well over 40 years and cut my teeth on iron sights. I was able to consistently make 500 yard shots with my rifle with iron sights, but not anymore. My aging eyes make it very difficult to establish proper “sight alignment / sight picture” using iron sights as I can’t get a good focus on the front sight post anymore. Firearms with iron sights are the only weapon humanity has ever used that requires you to change your focus to the tool rather than the target. Both red dots and lasers allow you to be “threat focused”, which is the natural way that we fight. You don’t punch or stab a threat by looking at your fist, or knife.

I started to EDC approximately 5 years ago, and quickly decided to get a red dot sight (RDS). In the beginning, just like you, I had a hard time acquiring the dot. It took practice and knowledge of what the problem was in order to fix the issue. Take a look at some videos from Modern Samurai Project, and Sage Dynamics dealing with red dots to get a basic understanding of how to resolve the problem. Then you are going to have to practice, practice, practice gun presentation until it becomes a natural process. The good part is that this can be done as dry fire and you don’t have to waste ammo until you get the presentation working for you.

Why not lasers? It’s a matter of eye perception, physics and geometry. No, I’m not kidding. When you overlay your RDS on a target, the dot is not blocked or hampered by any environmental factors. Rain, fog, smoke do not prevent you from overlaying the dot over the target. On a laser dot environmental factors can hamper your ability to place the dot over the target. Light smoke or light fog can block the dot, even though you can still see the target. This is the physics part.

In addition, the further the shot the more that laser dot is going to be jumping all over the place. Making it more difficult for you to trust that the shot is going where you want it to, increasing your hesitation. With a red dot you are going to see a natural circular “wobble”. This is normal and to be expected. You have to train yourself to overcome the hesitation with both the RDS and the laser. However, the wobble is very small in comparison from an RDS to a laser. This is the Eye Perception part. You can even diminish it on the RDS, though you won’t be able to completely stop it. Since we are unable to completely stop our bodies from slightly swaying. The difference is that the RDS wobble is consistent at every range distance. You will always experience the same amount of wobble.

With a laser the wobble will become more pronounced as the range increases. This very large difference in ranges will force you to hesitate. You don’t want to be hesitating in a life-or-death situation. Just test it out at your house or a range. Place the RDS on a target at 3 yds. Move back to 15 yds and look at the wobble. You will notice it, but it will not be incredibly distracting. Now move to 25 yds and do the same. Then try it with a laser. You will notice that the wobble on the RDS stays similarly within the small sight window, and you can still overlay it over the threat with little to any difficulty. However, the laser wobble will so significantly increase at longer distances that you will spend time trying to control it and bring it online with the target. This is the geometry part. That additional time is hesitation, and not very helpful when in a life-or-death situation.

My recommendation, make it easier on yourself. Start to “practice, practice, practice” with your RDS until you can consistently start seeing the dot. It took a lot of practice for me to get real good with iron sights. Consequently, I had to take a lot of practice to get good with the RDS. They are different paradigms so they require different training mindsets (methodologies).

A good example of this is Natural Point of Aim (NPA). I had to practice a lot so that whenever I lined myself up with a target my NPA would be consistent. But once I had trained myself this alignment became second nature. Nowadays, I line myself up with a target naturally and my NPA is almost always spot on. I had to do the same with the RDS.

Best of luck in your journey with the RDS. Don’t give up, and you will soon find out that they are an incredibly good tool.


Bah ! Canik if it not a glock! Canik what wars did they use them in, is the military using them. Man to be honest I have two and I think if canik was more available when I got my first guns I would NOT have purchased others because it is by far one of the nicest triggers on the market and I’m no trigger snob
And an all around great shooter. Period I bought a tp9 sf and an Sfx. A pleasure to shoot I want the sc tactical as the mete is essentially the same as the sfx but great hand guns made by the Turkish

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If you practice point shooting in a pinch you won’t use either sight system . For instance you have your weapon in a holster you disengage the retainment or remove garment if from concealed. Clear holster drop elbow orient weapon toward target as you drive toward the target you are moving finger from the the pistol memory pad to the trigger and at full extension the trigger is being pressed , if threat is bending to be suppressed after clearing holster drop elbow orient weapon in the direction of threat send two while extending the third shot should culminate with you being in the engagement of all your skill set weapon brought up to eye level

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If something is close enough to point shoot then I definitely don’t see the need for a red dot!


Amen - I love my Canik TP9SFX. I was looking for a full size gun to compliment my LCP .380 and EC9s. I tested many models, including a few Gen4 and Gen5 Glocks and several others. The Canik was my favorite and most accurate shooter by far right out of the box with very little experience on it.

The trigger is wonderful. The iron sights perfectly suitable.

And Canik is no lightweight in the pistol market. Their guns are seeing service in several militaries and law enforcement agencies worldwide. Not to be scoffed at at all.

I really like this gun!

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But how close is close 7 ft 12 ft 20 ft I don’t know but point shooting is the rule of the day .
All type of shooting is what we should be versed in

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on my EDC [S&W Shield 2.0] I use the irons as primary sighting and the red laser as confirmation
I am in the neiborhood on the shot
the wiggle can be used to your advantage this way
full sun makes the laser useless
focus on the 3 dots on the iron sites





I will note that I’ve seen a lot of videos (I like Active Self Protection) where people miss as close as a foot away. Sighted fire seems to universally be more accurate than unsighted.


You are correct but practice both ways pays dividends


I wished the rear sight didn’t come off with the plate I also wised companies would just make a red dot come with the plates for popular guns and obscure ones too my apex a1 is a problem child because I have to contact beretta to get my optics plate I put budget optics on budget guns expensive ones on expensive guns my stacatto will get the one best suited for it from trijicon all others holo sun , swamp fox that’s the lowest I go Burris is in there Black Friday is coming and I am going for it

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While I’m still not a huge fan of Red Dots, I decided to at least put my toes in the water and try one out on my TP9SFX. This one from Bushnell is available for a really cheap $90 on Amazon. Doing some dry fire testing with a laser cartridge at home last night, it seems to work very well. It certainly takes the guesswork out of aiming, and my groupings were much tighter.

Downside of this inexpensive unit is it does not turn on automatically when I pick up the gun. So I wouldn’t rely on this red dot for carry or home defense (I’ll probably stick with iron sights for that). But for a range gun and plinking, totally appropriate.

I’ll be shooting on the range next week for some actual experience.

So far, so good!


Both are handy. Both are crutches. Both can and will fail.
I was qualifying some team members on the OPOTA course. One of the best shooters on the team had his new blaster on the course and had his red dot go out on the first station.
He looks at me and says, “no problem–I’ve been practicing with it off.” He shot and aced the rest of the course with NO sights (no iron cowitness). I would call that FUBAR training.
My point–if you have a red dot or a laser on your pistol, make sure you can still hit with it turned off.