11 Best Red Dots For Shotguns

Modern sighting systems have gone wild in the past 10 years. However, shotguns are not left on the back burner!

Shotguns are, for the most part, not long-range weapons. As such, using a best red dot sight makes sense in many ways. Shotguns deliver deadly fire on fast-moving targets or changing target conditions such as fighting through heavy smoke, loss of light, or barricade situations that involve less than precision fire control.

In a Hurry? Here is Our Top Pick

Vortex Optic Venom

Vortex Optic Venom 6 MOA

The price of Vortex Optic Venom 6 MOA varies, so check the latest price at

First up for consideration is a sight built by Bushnell. I can say for a fact that this red dot dates back to the early days of this sighting system . Bushnell is so old school that piles of information have come together from years of trial and error. In the end, experience has paid off big time for the company.

best red dot sight for shotgun deer hunting

Using a 12 gauge 870 sight system for deer or night hunting raccoon.

PRODUCT

DETAILS

Products

The Bushnell TRS 25

Bushnell-TRS-25

The Bushnell TRS 25

  • Reticle: 3 MOA
  • Weight: 3.7 ounces
  • Battery Type: CR2032

Aimpoint Patrol Rifle Optic

Aimpoint-PRO

Aimpoint Patrol Rifle Optic

  • Reticle: 2 MOA
  • Weight: 11.6 oz
  • Laser: Red

Aimpoint Micro T-2

Aimpoint Micro T-2

  • Reticle: ‎2 MOA
  • Weight: 3.7 oz
  • Battery Type: CR2032, 3V Lithium

TruGlo 30mm Dual-Color Dot Sight

TruGlo

TruGlo 30mm Dual-Color Dot Sight

  • Reticle: 5 MOA
  • Weight: 9 OZ
  • Battery Type‎: ‎CR2032

Burris Ballistic Red Dot Sight

Burris-Ballistic

Burris Ballistic Red Dot Sight

  • Reticle: 3 MOA
  • Weight: 18.75 oz
  • Battery Type: CR2032

Eotech 512 Holographic Sight

Eotech-512

Eotech 512 Holographic Sight

  • Reticle: 1 MOA
  • Weight: 11.5 oz
  • Battery Type: 1 Lithium Metal

Udo Illuminated 2 MOA Red Dot

Udo Illuminated

Udo Illuminated 2 MOA Red Dot

  • Reticle: 2 MOA
  • Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Battery Type: CR2032

Sig Sauer SOR52002 Romeo5 1X20

Sig Sauer SOR52002 Romeo5 1X20

  • Reticle: 5 MOA
  • Weight: 5.1 ounces
  • Battery Type: CR2032

Vortex Viper Red Dot Sight

Vortex Viper Red Dot Sight

  • Reticle: 6 MOA
  • Weight: 1.6 ounces
  • Battery Type: CR1632

Trijicon RMR 7 MOA

Trijicon RMR 7 MOA

  • Reticle: 7 MOA
  • Weight: 1.2 ounces
  • Laser: Amber Dot

Sightmark Ultra Shot

Sightmark Ultra Shot Reflex Sight

Sightmark Ultra Shot

  • Weight: 5.7 ounces
  • Battery Type: CR1620
  • Magnification: 1x

1. Bushnell TRS 25 - Best Shotgun Red Dot 

best shotgun red dot

The Bushnell TRS 25 is a small but high mounted red dot. The shotgunner can shoot with a head high position versus crunching down into a small space and viewing through a small hole. The term Bushnell uses here is “Hi-rise.” This is a 1X25mm red dot riflescope turned shotgun sighting system.

The riser block on the scope not only helps with elevated alignment but also provides the shooter with peripheral vision control. In a gunfight, this can keep you alive. In a game situation, it can prove successful with a well-placed shot on even doubles.

At a weight of 6 ounces, the sight is not getting in the way of carrying heft or speed. While red dots are not at all designed for wing shooting, the sight is clearly quite capable of taking it to pigs and other night and day ground targets.

red dot for shotgun

The sight includes up to eleven brightness settings. This has been a nagging problem with red dots in the past. The red dot or green dot fades out in bright light.

If an overly bright selector level is used in low light, an outer ring develops and blinds the shooter. I have had this happen often when shooting from a high tree stand on an incoming deer at very low light while using my Metro Gun subsonic slug shotgunning system.

This sight uses integral mounts and includes a set of lens covers. This mounting system fits the Weaver-style rail or its variants.

The matte black colored sight self regulates the amount of light in order to save battery life. When the lens hood has been attached, the unit will completely power down to zero to also help conserve battery life.

The Bushnell TRS 26 that is a newer version of Bushnell TRS-25 and currently one of the Best Red dots under $200.

Bushnell-TRS-25

Bushnell TRS 25

The price of Bushnell TRS 25 varies, so check the latest price at

2. Aimpoint PRO - Best Red Dot Scope Shotgun  

best red dot scope for turkey shotgun

Moving up in quality and built for combat style applications, the Aimpoint Patrol Rifle (AR 15) comes to the top of the pile. When this sight is attached to a scatter-gun, the whole weapon system upgrades toward military police standards.

Some may consider this a more than needed upgraded sight. I believe you get what you're paying for. I first observed this sight during its developmental stages as it was being tested on both rifles and shotguns. I can say for a fact that it is nice to drive a BMW versus a Ford once in awhile.

This reflex sight offers a bright lens function and a crystal clear image transfer. Mounting this 2 MOA dot allows for more precise sighting on smaller targets. This sight is a jump over many others in practical use. An example is aiming for a deer's heart versus someplace on the chest.

This sight offers that 2 MOA dot with compatible settings and 6 daylight brightness settings. The sight runs on a single CR2032 battery for three years without changing and ships with a battery date tag to remind the owner to change it out one day far down the road.

Mounting options are based on Weaver-style rails with a military-style QRP2 removable 39mm spacer which fits the Picatinny rail (Weaver).

best red dot scope for turkey shotgun

This sight hits a happy medium in terms of finding a sight that is quick to point in close range but still retains the ability to target a longer range subject. I successfully shot deer with this sight in heavy corn field cover. I shot the same fields from static positions.

In other words, I formed my opinion of this subject sight system from Aimpoint from far more than a single harvested animal.

This sight is compatible with all generations of night vision devices and may be used with Aimpoint “3X Magnifier” and “Concealed Engagement” units. This sight is well beyond the standard sporting model sighting system.

The threaded forward lens opening allows the use of screw-in anti-reflective devices (ARD). I used a anti-reflective sniper honeycomb grid on the system I tested. The unit is built using a hard aluminum alloy housing and is designed for real-world combat elements.

Shoot the system with both eyes open to gain the element of full observation from the side, top, and lower control fields during firing.

Aimpoint-PRO

Aimpoint PRO

The price of Aimpoint PRO varies, so check the latest price at

On a budget? click here to check out our guide for the Best Red dots under $100.

3. Aimpoint Micro T-2

best shotgun optic

The Aimpoint Micro T-2 is a good bet as a shotgun sighting system when you want high quality while keeping size and weight at a minimum. The T-2 sight is a 1X (non-magnifying) parallax-free optical system that uses a 2 MOA red dot.

The sight is submersible in water up to 82 feet making it a tough field system for hunters under all weather conditions.

best red dots for shotguns

The unit offers 12 brightness settings and is night vision compatible. As a reflex sight, the T-2 offers one extra brightness setting for bright sunlight. This is an awesome feature! I have lost game because of this situation. What I would not have given for a sight that cuts through natural sunlight that was at a white-hot intensity!

The lithium battery in this unit provides 50,000 hours (five years) of constant battery life. The unit makes use of full front and rear lens caps for protection. Its field weight is 3.0 ounces.

Aimpoint-Micro-T-2

Aimpoint Micro T-2

The price of Aimpoint Micro T-2 varies, so check the latest price at

4. TruGlo 30mm Dual-Color Dot Sight

shotgun optics

TruGlo builds a good product. That could be the end of this part of the story, but as always buyers need to see more.

I have been a professional writer, researcher, and ballistics expert for many years. With over 1000 verticals, four books and many features in major annuals by Gun Digest Books, I can tell you that this optical choice is always a good bet. If you're a hunter, plinker, or general target shooter, no other scopes compare to this one.

This model is a red dot sight that is able to withstand field use for years. I have been shooting one on a crossbow for over 20 years. It is still sending the mail downrange with good accuracy.

My shotgun has seen a number of events hosted by the sight maker. My many experiences prove that you cannot damage the sight. It has endured winter events as well as the steaming jungles of Central America.

shotgun red dot sight

This sight retains an MOA of 5, which makes it a fast target acquisition system. The sight offers color selection in red or green. The lens on the objective side of the dot scope housing is clear and sharp.

Shockproof and waterproof, this is sight is a hunter's favorite in red dot sighting systems. Unlimited eye relief offers a very wide field of view.

The unit carries a fully adjustable rheostat for brightness settings. This gives the shooter some margin of control in various light conditions and makes the best use of the multi-coated lenses.

This sight features a special interior coating on the tube housing that stops stray light from interfering with the red dot image. This is indeed very different from some others currently on the market.

The mounting system on this sight is a Weaver-style basic rail system and as such is a snap to mount and adjust. Weaver is king in this area of optic base mounting.

TruGlo

TruGlo 30mm Dual

The price of TruGlo 30mm Dual varies, so check the latest price at

5. Burris AR Prism Sight with Fastfire III - Best Red Dot Sight For Shotgun Deer Hunting

best shotgun sights

This unit is much like what I put together years ago from add-on parts for night, low light, and turkey or deer hunting, My system carried a holographic sight, a red dot scope and added remote control spotlight (Texas legal). This sight was dead on with a 50-yard accurate laser system.

Burris uses two sight systems in this series of sighting options with the fully redesigned AR 336 Prism sight. The 5X magnification used at the 600-yard range with a 36mm objective main tube provides crisp images with the use of both red and green color changes.

This primary scope in a package with the red dot Fastfire III sight (attached). This gives the shooter some great options. I have found options like these of great value in the field.

shotgun red dot sights

Shooting late-night coyotes in Mexico from a pickup truck bed, we once were jumped by a Jaguar that came to the dying rabbit call. It was interesting because I had the cat in my Remington 870’s holographic sight (red dot).

My team of guides flew in every direction so it was my call to pull the trigger on the big cat. As he fell away from the end gate, my guides were safe out on the truck's hood and roof. It was my call to allow the big guy to make tracks. The big cat lived since I had no tag and was not in any real danger.

The Burris Ballistics CQ reticle is ideal for both close-quarter shooting and extended range work. The Prism sight is without question a gun fighter's system because it allows a quick, clear observation of the target with both eyes open.

red dot shotgun sight

While the sight is set up for 7.62 or .556 Nato rifle cartridges, it can do the deed on your shotgun as well. Double sights for double the workload--deer with the tube sight and fast jackrabbits or hogs with the red dot HUD display sight. (Attached to the angled right side of the main tube.)

This sight is tough and is built of steel with a completely waterproof and shockproof construction

Burris-Ballistic

Burris AR Prism Sight

The price of Burris AR Prism Sight varies, so check the latest price at

6. Eotech 512 Holographic Sight 

holographic shotgun sight

Red ring and red dot add up to fast target marking and the ability to lay down impressive fire accurately. The Eotech Holo sight is a holographic sight. It is simple to use and offers many advantages over standard red dot systems.

Direct viewing provides a great deal of room for observing subjects or situations at the peripheral.

The sight retains a 1 MOA dot that allows fine shots to be taken---head shooting barn rats or heart shooting bad guys in combat. This is a great sight for the modern tactical shotgun that has rails. It is short and fast to the hand.

The sight features adjustable brightness and can be set for varied field lighting conditions.

sight for shotguns

This water-resistant sight can be submerged to a depth of 10 feet. The optic system is parallax free with a magnification level of 1x. The eye relief on this sight is unlimited. Sighting adjustments are 0.5 MOA (½ inch) at 100 yards. The adjustment range is a total of 40 MOA.

Window sizing is 1.2" x 0.85". Set up like the HUD on a jet fighter but on a much smaller scale, the sight requires alignment with the red dot and ring to the target and it is showtime downrange.

The reticle ring measures 68 MOA with the 1 MOA center dot providing a good area to pick up a fast-moving target. The sight is not designed for wing shooting, but for tactical applications or home defense.

Battery life continues for 1000 hours. The sight offers twenty brightness settings with a scrolling feature.

Eotech-512

Eotech 512 Holographic Sight

The price of Eotech 512 Holographic Sight varies, so check the latest price at

7. Udo Illuminated 2 MOA Red Dot - Red Dot For Shotgun

red dot sight for shotgun

For the budget-minded group shopping for red dot sights, this sight comes to the surface as a lower-end offering that works as a general use optical system. I have run these on product review weapons before. Service life has been good with several years of trouble-free use at an almost full-time rate.

This sight retains a 2 MOA red dot and is fully adjustable with click values for sight zeroing. Eleven illumination levels can be accessed on the sight that covers a wide range of lighting conditions downrange. Mounting is easy with aftermarket products. A Weaver rail basic system is installed. This sight weighs 8.8 ounces.

best red dot for shotgun

Made from a composite material, the unit is strong and will withstand normal field encounters with water and bumps. The scope comes with a 30-day money-back warranty and a one-year service warranty.

Udo-Illuminated

Udo Illuminated 2 MOA Red Dot

The price of Udo Illuminated 2 MOA Red Dot varies, so check the latest price at

8. Sig Sauer SOR52002 Romeo5 1X20

best red dot sight

Some of these sights are made in the USA while others are imported. The sighting red dot features a 2 MOA size that allows some more precise sight coverage on distant targets. However, this is not a long-range unit by any means. It is designed for quick target access downrange.

The sight retains 10 illumination settings including 8 daylight settings and 2 additional settings for night vision. The sight covers all the bases in this case.

The sight uses a motion power activation system and will power up when moved and power down when at rest. This saves battery life. The power retained by the battery amounts to 40,000 hours.

Mounting this sight involves using the 1913 Picatinny rail or as it is often referred to as the Weaver system.

This waterproof unit is set up for active field use in rough conditions during the night or day.

The scope uses the M1913 low mount riser and a co-witness 1.41” rise mount.

Sig Sauer

Sig Sauer SOR52002 Romeo5 1X20

The price of Sig Sauer SOR52002 Romeo5 1X20 varies, so check the latest price at

9. Vortex Optic Venom 6 MOA - Best Shotgun Red Dot

red dot shotgun

The Vortex Venom is a HUD sight that is fast and designed for close-range target acquisition. These are good shotgun sights for close quarter shooting.

In hunting situations, ground targets or treed critters are in a world of trouble when this sight is pressed into service. Shotgun target competition such as three gun events could be a place for using this HUD style display sight.

The 3 MOA dot is larger and picks up faster in low light situations or in defensive situations when speed is required. This sight would be awesome is bad guy versus good guy tactical events.

The sight is a high-quality product made by a well-known brand name.

It uses fully coated lenses to minimize issues such as light distortion.

The control for light variations is on the left side of the sight. The shooter has three options when using this system and adjusting for varied lighting conditions.

The Venom has an auto-brightness mode that uses ambient light sensors to control dot intensity. This feature is available if the shooter wants this type of sight light control.

The sight includes 1 MOA windage and elevation click adjustments with ample range to gain correct points of zero.

The top-loading battery is easy to replace even in the field.

All internal elements of the sight are “O” ring sealed to keep dust and other field trash away from the core components of the sight.

Vortex Optic Venom

Vortex Optic Venom 6 MOA

The price of Vortex Optic Venom 6 MOA varies, so check the latest price at

10. Trijicon RMR 7 MOA

best tactical shotgun sights

Trijicon builds high-end optical systems for sporting use and the military. Anything you buy with this brand name is the result of many years of research. Trijicon uses very high quality internal and external parts. The sights are very good overall, but the cost is higher than others.

I became acquainted with this company using the ACPOG systems which are military based red dot systems with built-in range and windage settings. ACOG has been a military standard for many years producing N-16 rifle sights.

The company has gained massive amounts of background data covering this RMR variant in a Dud display style red dot sight.

The sight uses a 7 MOA dual illuminated RMR Tritium-phosphor lamp reticle.
Fiber optics allow the system to work well in very low light conditions so the sight becomes easier to use in night or low light.

The sight has a very unique patented housing shape designed for rapid target acquisition under stress conditions. The shape is closer to that of the much larger head-up display (HUD) installed in the F16 fighter plane's gunsight system.

The sight has a very unique patented housing shape designed for rapid target acquisition under stress conditions. The shape is closer to that of the much larger head-up display (HUD) installed in the F16 fighter plane's gunsight system.

The main sight housing is forged from 7075-T6 aircraft aluminum alloy. The housing's design forces recoil shock away from the sight.

The true color multi-coated lens makes for very accurate color transmission to the shooter's eye. This sight is very workable for use on the modern shotgun. This sight is useful for combat style or small game fur hunting.

Trijicon-RMR

Trijicon RMR 7 MOA

The price of Trijicon RMR 7 MOA varies, so check the latest price at

11. Sightmark Ultra Shot Reflex Sight

red dot on shotgun

The Sightmark reflex or HUD display sight in a basic selection. Priced in the budget range, this sight is best used in the informal setting and not to be relied on for hard-nose hunting, combat training or tactical drills.

The sight uses a cast aluminum housing that is alloy material based. This sight also includes a protective shield for the primary housing.

The battery retains life for 1,000 hours of continuous use.

The mounts on this sight are quickly detachable (Weaver application) for ease of use on Weaver-style rails.

The sighting reticle is both red and green to meet the shooter's preference.

The unit is parallax free and offers unlimited eye relief.
Power for this sight is provided by a single battery (CR123).

Sightmark

Sightmark Ultra Shot Reflex Sight

The price of Sightmark Ultra Shot Reflex Sight varies, so check the latest price at

Why Use Red Dot Sights on Shotguns?

Shotgun-mounted red dot systems are becoming very popular because they fit a real need among turkey hunters, brush country slug-gunning deer hunters, and predator and varmint hunters who work at night at close-range. 

Competition shooters at three gun events are also major candidates for this type of optical system. It makes no difference if the sight is a HUD display or a metal tube-housed scope-style system. The real value here is speed and target acquisition inside 100 yards.

Right now I am testing a new pair of Truglo red dots sights on shotguns in-house for a smooth-bore publication. The sights fit a Weaver-style rail, are fast to mount, and in the tube-style sight well on ground targets. 

The Hud display being tested right alongside the scope style model is faster, allows the shooter to cover a both eyes open field of view, and is a lighter weight to haul around on the receiver of a scatter-gun.

In the end, both sights will be mounted on crossbows that are also here at Ballistics Research & Development for testing and used against whitetail deer come Fall in the Black Hills. The point here is that under the right conditions, the red dot sight is very workable as an option in the field. 

The sights are low maintenance, free of a great many complicated moving parts, will run forever on a single battery, and produce hits on selected targets. What is not to like about all these advantages?

In the not-so-great department, the red dot is not a massively long-range sight. The military use an ACOG-style that is designed with built-in ranging sub-tensions. The general-use design of a red dot is not set up that way. 

best red dot for shotgun

Sighting the system illustrates a singe red dot that is 1 through about 4 MOA in size at 100 yards. Put the dot on the target and send the round. This means that hold-over will be required on shots that are not within the basic zero of the shotshell cartridge. 

Shotguns are close-range weapons, with the exception of some sabot rounds in rifled barrels and steel darts in military circles (flashettes). We have successfully developed and manufactured shotgun slugs when used in a rifled shotgun barrel that will impact within 6 inches of dead center out to 150 yards. 

In this case, some hold-over, or basic calibration of the red dot sight, could be required.

For the most part, save for housing material, glass quality, and the lifeline of the red dot battery system, these systems are best viewed by the buyer in terms of price. Get the most bang for the buck you can find. 

I shoot TruGlo a great deal of the time because they are very affordable, hold up well for many years afield, and are right there up and running when I need them on a trophy whitetail deer as it closes to my kill zone.

shotgun red dot

In terms of getting these sights mounted, all you need is a Weaver rail installed or one that comes with your shotgun., The Weaver bases are common and easy to find at the local gun shop or big box store. 

Anyone can mount the sights in about two minutes, the zero is a simple up or down, right or left adjustment of the red dot, and for once no major expense is required when getting into these types of system. Most red dot sights come with a mounting base included. This is another cost-saving advantage to the complete unit.

The line between the old school bird gun and modern tactical shotgun has become blurred. I know combat operation soldiers today that prefer an alley sweeper (Rem 870) 12 gauge riot gun over the most modern military based autos.

Why? Close quarter operations in cities and small room-clearing situations. The scattergun is king here. Today, when using the modern red dot and other related sights, the accuracy and range of the smoothbore firearms have increased.

What do you think of these shotgun red dots? Is there one you like more than the others? Let us know in the comments below! And if you’re looking for more shotgun scope ideas, take a look at our list of the best best shotgun red dots for turkey hunting.

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