In the upcoming 2015 issue of HANDGUN BUYER’S GUIDE, author Doug Larson rounds up some of the newest handguns from Smith & Wesson, Sig Sauer, FNH USA and more on the market currently that are ready for mounting miniature reflex sights.

Larson writes, “At one time, iron sights were the only sights available with which to aim a gun. Then telescopic sights were introduced, but it took a long time for them to become widely accepted. Red-dot and reflex sights eventually came along, but many shooters thought they were only a fad. Now they are very common on long guns used for everything from competition to war, but until the advent of miniature red-dot sights, it wasn’t practical to attach them to a handgun.

“In recent years, several companies have begun to offer rugged and dependable small red-dot sights that can hold up to the pounding generated by modern handguns. Competitive shooters have recognized the edge that these sights offer over iron sights and are beginning to use the miniature versions. As is often the case, once a product or technique is proven to work in competition, those who use and carry guns to keep the peace adopt it. If you are still wondering why in the world anyone would want to put a mini reflex sight on a pistol, consider these benefits. The reflex sight has no magnification, so the target as seen through the sight is the same size as seen without it. That means there is no confusion if both eyes are kept open while one eye views the target through the sight and the other looks directly at the target. And that makes for better situational awareness—something vital in a life-or-death situation.

“Because the dot or reticle appears to be on the target—just as if it were a laser—the eyes can focus on the target and still see the dot clearly. This is a huge advantage when shooting because, with iron sights, the shooter must focus hard on the front sight, letting the target blur to assure good hits. These characteristics also mean that, with practice, it is much faster to acquire the target and aim the gun. This speed can save lives.”

To learn more, check out the 2015 issue of HANDGUN BUYER’S GUIDE, available on newsstands and digitally October 7, 2014. To purchase, visit

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