Holosun 510C Review – Great Sight for Money

holosun hs510c review

Is the Holosun 510c the ultimate red dot? It may not be the cheapest of all the sights out there, but it’s certainly easier to swallow than the cost of a holographic sight like Eotech or high end reflex sight, and the features that it comes with are impressive at any price.

In a Hurry? Review Summary

I found the Holosun 510c to be an incredible red dot. It provides just enough customization options that each person can make it perfect for their use, and the solar panel, battery life, open reflex style, brightness settings, and reticle choices all come together to make the Holosun 510c the most versatile and powerful red dot I have ever seen.

What We’ll Discuss

In this review, we’ll be going over the advertised specifications and whether the 510c really lives up to them. We’ll also talk about how well it holds zero in different weather conditions, and how easy to use the 510c is.

We want to dive into the features that make the Holosun unique, which ones I think are gimmicky (spoiler: shake awake), and which ones I think are great (spoiler: solar power).

Let's get right into it.

holosun 510

Holosun HS510c Review

The Holosun 510c is a red dot sight that helps with improved accuracy over iron sights for sporting rifles and carbines primarily. The Holosun HS510c does not offer any magnification, which is typical for an optic of this type. 

Red dot optics are unique in that they are parallax free in the sight picture, so the circle dot or ring reticle will always be where the bullet will hit once it's zeroed, even when viewed from a different angle.

Is It Good? Why?

Yes. It's very good. With three different reticle options, solar power, long battery life, and their quick detach (QD) mount, it's a great optic for home defense, and the illumination system makes it great for low light conditions. It's a fantastic sight for the money.

This sight has quite a bit going for it, and the pros far outweigh the cons. The 510c is only a single optic model that Holosun offers, and they have similar versions designed for handgun use as well.

Where to Buy

You can pick up the Holosun HS510c on Amazon or OpticsPlanet.

The Holosun HS510c comes with a mount, battery tray, adjustment tool, Torx wrench, and a CR2032 battery to get you started. It should have everything you need to get it installed on your rifle of choice.

holosun hs510c

Holosun HS510c

The price of Holosun HS510c varies, so check the latest price at

Design & Features

Like most red dot sights, the Holosun HS510c is a reflex sight. Unlike most red dot sights, though, the Holosun HS510c has a number of unique features that make it really stand out from the competition, and we'll make those features crystal clear throughout this section of the review.

Power Management and Battery Life

The Holosun HS510C actually has a solar panel mounted to the top of it to take advantage of solar power in good lighting conditions. This means that you get long battery life even at the higher brightness settings. The Holosun HS510c should get up to 50,000 hours of battery life on a single battery.

In direct sunlight, the Holosun 510c can actually operate without the battery, and in ambient light the battery and solar panel will share the burden to maximize your battery life. 

holosun red dot review

It's not common to see solar on an optic, but it works very well on the Holosun 510c, and typical use at moderate brightness give about 20,000 hours of battery life. You get 10 brightness settings, and auto mode if you want to let the optic worry about it. Holosun also has what they call their "shake awake" mode.

This is a neat idea, in that the sight will essentially go into a sleep mode like your phone or a computer, then when it detects a shake, it will kick back on. The shake awake feature can preserve your battery life, but if you manually turn off the sight, it won't work.

The shake awake feature seems like a cool idea, and I'm sure a lot of people will like it, it just wasn't my cup of tea while I was reviewing it. The battery compartment is on the right side, and the battery tray slides out to allow you to swap it out. I'm a fan of the battery and power management on the Holosun 510c, and it is definitely a contender for the best red dots for battery life that I've seen.

Three Reticles, One Optic

Reticle design is a critical part of a red dot sight, and many first-time buyers don't think a lot about the reticle and sight picture before they buy, and end up on the phone with customer service trying to return their optic.

The Holosun 510c addresses this by having not one, but three different reticles that you can choose from. They have the standard 2 MOA dot that you'll see on most reflex sights, they have a 65MOA circle dot, and then a combination with both the 65 MOA circle and the 2 MOA dot in the middle.

Holosun Hs510c Three Reticles

There are no other reticle colors here, but for the most part that omission doesn't bother me. With three different red reticles, the optic missing out on a green reticle or other colors doesn't seem like a big deal. 

In addition to the 10 reticle settings for daylight, there are also two settings for night vision compatibility, so if you are planning on using this with an NVD, you should be in luck. If you really want that green, you can always look at the HE510c. The HE510c is very similar to the HS510C but with a green reticle.

Even though most red dot sights just have the 2 MOA dot or larger, I really like the inclusion of the ring reticle and combo on the Holosun 510c model. For me it makes it easier to see than any other reflex sight or holographic sight that I've used. The view through the optic is crystal clear and the Holosun 510c will co-witness with your iron sights.

Performance In the Field And Other Features

This red dot sight mounts easily to a picatinny rail, and thanks to the QD mount, it's incredibly fast to take this optic on and off different rifles. Granted, you'll still have to zero in the reticle every time you swap, but it does make it one of the easiest sights to take on and off your rifle.

Even with the electronics that give you the 2 MOA dot, the 65 MOA circle, and the circle dot combination, this red dot sight is still has an IP67 rating, and can be completely submersed in water and still work well. 

This Holosun sight uses a titanium alloy and a titanium hood to protect the optics, with 6061 Aluminum for the rest of the body, which is just one of many other pros that this optic has.

holosun optics review

The best red dot sight is going to have a reticle that holds zero no matter what, and this Holosun optic is a great example. Even if the power source gets disrupted, if you have any ambient light, you can get enough power from the solar to see the reticle in the viewing window. This is one of the situations where the 65 MOA circle reticle really shines in my opinion.

If you're relying on back-up power, then the reticle may not be as bright as the reticle when using battery, so the fact that Holosun included a reticle that is larger and easier to see in all conditions makes this a great optic for SHTF, self-defense, and home defense.

Holosun did all the little things right with this optic; the QD mount, being able to co-witness with iron sights, and great reticle choices.

Adjustments on the Holosun optic are done using two buttons on the left hand side, which is fine, but the same buttons are used for windage and elevation as are used for brightness, and that means you have to memorize how to use the Holosun optic rather than just being able to pick it up and do it. Adjustment clicks are .5 MOA, which is fairly standard for an optic like this.

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Reticle choices are great on the Holosun
  • 510c has great reviews on Amazon and Optics Planet
  • Holosun mounts on picatinny and weaver rail system
  • 510C has 65 MOA ring in addition to dot sight
  • Holosun uses CR2032 battery instead of AA batteries

Cons:

  • The Holosun is a heavy sight
  • The 510c optic doesn't work great with NVDs
  • Optic has no green reticle, MOA ring has no other colors
  • Holosun does not come with lens cloth

You can pick up the Holosun 510c from Amazon or Optics Planet for a great price.

Alternatives to the Holosun 510C

If you like what the Holosun has to offer but you're looking at some other options, here are a few alternatives to the 510c:

PRODUCT

DETAILS

Products

ALTERNATIVE

Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight

Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight

Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight

  • Diameter: 26.5mm
  • Magnification: 1x
  • Length: 1.9 in
ALTERNATIVE

EOTech Holographic Sight

EOTech Holographic Sight

  • Diameter: 25mm
  • Magnification: 1x
  • Length: 5.6 in
ALTERNATIVE

Sig Sauer Romeo5

Sig Sauer Romeo5

  • Diameter: 20mm
  • Magnification: 1x
  • Length: 4.72 in

1. Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight

 Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight

The Vortex is nice for a few reasons. It's similar in a lot of ways to the Holosun, in that it doesn't have different reticle colors, but gives you the same fast target acquisition and is a much more affordable optic than the Holosun.

Reviews are great for the Venom, and it gives you the same large sight window and unlimited eye relief. Batteries are different here, but brightness should be about the same. Dot is 3 MOA (not 2MOA like the Holosun).

Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight

Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight

The price of Vortex Venom Red Dot Sight varies, so check the latest price at

2. EOTech Holographic Sight

EOTECH 512 Holographic Weapon Sight

EOTechs 518 model is a great alternative to the 510C, and is in fact one of the optics that it is most compared to.

The release mount on the EOTech is more standard, and you get 20 settings for brightness instead of 10. There's no NVD compatible mode, though, and you'll have to buy EOTechs more expensive optic to get that functionality.

Reviews are great here as well, and their "NoBS" lifetime warranty is a sight for sore eyes (pun intended). The 510c has a great warranty as well, but EOTech goes a step further in their optic warranty than the 510c.

The technology in this optic is different as well. The aimpoint that appears over your target is a projection instead of a reflective light. 

This technology makes it more compatible with a magnifier, and allows the reticle to stay in focus even when you're looking at the targets. Durability is better as well, with it continuing to be functional even if part of the glass is broken.

EOTECH 512 Holographic Weapon Sight

EOTech Holographic Sight

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

3. Sig Sauer Romeo5

Sig Sauer Romeo5

This is a great choice if you're on more of a budget. The motion-activated mode allows it to turn on when it detects motion, which is similar to the shake awake feature of the 510c. Reviews are fantastic, and one reviewer even blasted it with a shotgun to see if it would still hold zero. Illumination levels include 2 for night vision compatibility, and you have knobs for elevation and windage.

Reliability is great, durability is great, and you have a 2MOA dot, though no 65MOA ring.

SIG Sauer ROMEO5

Sig Sauer Romeo5

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

Conclusion and Summary

The Holosun is a fantastic choice to go on your .223 or carbine rifle and will be a great aid to shooting at close range, mid range, and even longer ranges. Red dots are great tools, and if you need a little more or less from yours than the Holosun offers, you can take a look at some of our recommended alternatives.

I’m personally partial to the Sig Romeo5, but the Holosun really does offer a wider field of view and some great features that make it a fantastic choice and its really making me consider upgrading.

holosun review

Red dots are just plain fun to shoot with and make your rifle more effective to boot. If you’re ready to pick one up for yourself, you can check them out on Amazon or OpticsPlanet.

Are you going to pick up a Holosun 510c? Let us know in the comments!

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