Are you looking for the best red dot? We take a detailed look at the Holosun 407k and the 507k. We tell you which is better under what conditions and the gun you use.
Red dots work on all kinds of weapons. They are meant for short-range work. The unlimited eye relief makes them ideal for handguns and some shotgun applications, like bird hunting.
Holosun makes excellent red dot optics. The 407k and the 507k are both top-end devices. The biggest difference is how precise you want to be with the red dot.
Differences Between Holoson 407K and 507K
Let’s eye the differences first since this tells you which optic you want.
1. Dot Size
The biggest difference between the 407k and the 507k is the dot size. This is the first criterion to decide which is best for you.
The 407k has a 6 MOA dot. At 100 yards, the dot covers about 6 inches, and 3 inches at 50 yards. You pick red or green.
The 507k has a 2 MOA dot surrounded by a 32 MOA circle. The dot covers about 2 inches at 100 yards or an inch at 50 yards. Again, choose red or green.
The circle encapsulates an area of 32 inches across at 100 yards.
Why Size Matters
Dot size matters because of how much of the target it covers. For self-defense purposes, under 25 yards, the dot size does not really matter, at least where hiding the target is concerned.
At 25 yards, both dots let you see plenty of the target. At 50 yards, you start to see an appreciable difference. The difference is palpable when moving out to 100 yards.
A 6-inch dot at 100 yards means this scope is not suited as a hunting optic if you have to shoot 100 yards or more.
Seeing that big dot is easy. If the gun already has a two-inch group at 100 yards, then you are looking at an eight-inch or even larger potential group. On big animals like deer or bear, that can be OK. That is too much leeway for varmints like a fox and notes for an ethical shot.
The 2-inch dot at 100 yards is acceptable. A spread of 4-6 inches is still well within the vitals for critters like coyotes.
Finding that small dot is harder to do compared to the 6-MOA monster.
If you are shooting in tournaments where speed is the key thing and targets are close, the 6 MOA is preferred by pros and regular competitors. It is just faster getting on target.
If you need precision, such as accuracy competition, you need a smaller dot to better center and deliver your shots.
WINNER: This is a draw. It boils down to how fast you need to get on target. If speed is the main criterion, get the 6 MOA. If precision is more important, get the 2 MOA.
The 507 has a 32 MOA ring that also appears on the scope when you turn it on. This is a sighting aid. It helps you find the scope and then center on the target.
The ring of light gives your eye something to use as a reference point when bringing the gun on target. Sometimes, you cannot see the dot until you get close to being on target. The ring has a wider view angle so you can see it sooner.
The ring also gives you a reference frame. At 100 yards, 32 MOA is about 32 inches. At 50 yards, that is 16 inches. At 25 yards, it is 8 inches.
If you use the center dot and go to the edge of the ring, these measurements are halved.
With some practice, you can use the ring to estimate the size of your target. Do you need to know the target size? In some hunting situations, like a bear, yes. Some places require bears to be a certain size before you can take one.
When you get good, you can use that dot and ring to estimate the spread of a deer’s rack.
The 407k has the 6 MOA dot. You can get an idea of size with the dot as a reference. It is just harder.
WINNER: The 507k has a ring and the 407k does not. No question the 507k wins.
These two devices will work in cold and hot weather. The 407k has a wide range of temperature tolerance.
Storage means leaving in those temperatures will not harm it. The scope may not work at the far temperature extremes. You will have to warm it up or cool it down a bit to see the dot. -40 degrees is the same in Celcius and Fahrenheit. This is the only time the two temps are identical.
- Storage Temperature -40℃ to 70℃ or -40 F to 158 F
- Working Temperature -30℃ to 60℃ or -22 F to 140 F
- Storage Temperature -20℃ to 65℃ or -4 F to 149 F
- Working Temperature -20℃~51℃ or -4 F to 124 F
The upper end only matters with storage unless you happen to be caught in a fire or work in a foundry. Inside-vehicle temperatures can hit those upper limits on a hot summer day in the South. On the cold side, catching outside in -40 below weather is certainly possible. Hunting at -4 F or -20 C happens, especially in the north.
WINNER: The 407K scores the victory. It has a broader range of temperature tolerance and function.
The adjustments are identical mechanically. They are not the same when looking at shot placement.
Both red dots offer 1 MOA click value, and both have around 30 MOA of windage and elevation travel. The difference comes when looking at the dot past 25 yards. 2 MOA covers an inch. 6 MOA covers 3 inches.
Go to 50 yards. On the 407k, slide the dot 2 clicks up or down. 4 inches of the target are still hidden behind the dot.
On the 507k, a 2-click shift means the previously hidden part of the target is now fully visible.
The graphic shows the difference. The black ring is the original dot placement on target. The pink ring is a 2 MOA movement. For this illustration, the distance is 100 yards or 2 inches of movement.
WINNER: The 507K gets the nod because you just see more of the target no matter how far away you are from it. If you need to shift the dot to see more of the target, the 2 MOA dot needs less movement.
With the differences out of the way, what makes these two optics similar?
Both are rated IP67. They can stay in water up to a meter deep for up to 30 minutes. Rain will not affect either one in the slightest.
2. Lock mode
Once you get either sighted in, put the scope in lock mode. This prevents the settings from being accidentally changed. Each uses buttons to adjust W/E.
3. Gun size
Both are meant for subcompact pistols. They will work on bigger handguns. They do not work as well on long guns because the sight window is small.
Both use the CR1632 battery. You can expect around 50,000 hours of battery life with the dot set to the lowest intensity. Cranking the brightness reduces battery life. Regardless of the life expectancy, the battery should be changed every year. The battery is in a side compartment for easy changing.
Holsuns come with a “shake awake” feature. Just moving the gun turns the scope on. If you carry a gun with either scope, the dot comes on whenever you move. This is why a long battery life is necessary.
The shake-awake feature means you are not trying to turn the scope on during an emergency. You know it is on. Take care of the situation and let the scope do its thing.
You can override the shake-awake features by manually turning the scope off. To use shake-awake, turn the scope on. It will go into sleep mode.
Holosuns are built tough. The hardware starts with a 7075 aluminum frame. Each mounts directly to a Sig Sauer P365X or XL or compatibles. You can get an adapter plate for slides with a four-boss interface, MOS, or RMR mounts.
They are parallax-free. If you are holding the gun slightly off your regular grip, put the dot on the target, and you should hit that spot. This is very handy for emergency shooting.
8. Eye relief
Eye relief is unlimited, within reason. These are handgun optics. If you try to use one from several yards away, well, that’s on you.
They are 1x scopes. Given the size and expected use of subcompact handguns, a magnifier can be mounted. Finding a magnifier to fit is another matter entirely.
I am unaware of a magnifier that will fit because these scopes ride very low on the gun frame. You could get a riser mount to elevate it. You are still left with the problem of having enough space on the gun to mount the magnifier.
The single pane of glass is multi-coated for superior sight pictures through the glass.
11Physical specs for both red dots
- Window Size: 0.58×0.77
- Inches: 1.6×0.98×0.95
- Weight: 1 ounce
The Holosun 407k and 507k manufacturing warranty is for the original owner’s lifetime. The glass has a 5-year warranty, and the electronics a 3-year warranty.
The 407k or 507k will not work without a battery. You can shoot the gun without having an aiming dot.
I recommend changing the battery every year. This makes sure you have a fresh battery all the time and prevents corrosion.
Final Verdict: Which Red Dot is Better?
For CCW and self-defense, give me the 407k. A bigger dot and wider operating temps are appealing. My decision is because of that bigger dot that helps me get on target for self-defense purposes.
I can hold a 4-inch group at 10 yards even with that 6 MOA dot.
These red dots are not recommended for hunting; they are too small. That said, if I am getting one of these for hunting, I want the 507k. I want that smaller dot and the ring for precision shooting. However, these red dots are not suited for hunting.
In this article, we walked you through a pretty detailed explanation of which red dot is better, the Holosun 407K and the 507K. While each red dot has its advantages and disadvantages, we can agree that they both perform exceptionally well. These red dots are for subcompacts, but they will hold up to the recoil of a hunting-caliber handgun. They are small, which means they are easy to conceal.