Holosun SCS Review: Red Dot Reflex Glock Optic Tested

Chris G.

The Holosun SCS (Solar Charging Sight) is designed from the ground up as an innovative pistol-mounted red dot. It’s crafted with a durable titanium alloy housing and optimized footprint to mount low on slides like the Glock MOS.

I was particularly interested in the Holosun SCS for its integrated solar panel and battery system that provides essentially unlimited battery life, shaking up the red dot market. It also touts an auto-adjusting brightness mode and gives shooters the flexibility of a precise 2 MOA dot or quick target acquiring 32 MOA circle. As a longtime user of Trijicon and Leupold optics costing north of $400, the Holosun brand caught my eye as an affordable alternative.

After getting my hands on the SCS and speaking with fellow users, I realized this red dot represents an impressive balance of durability, battery redundancy, and accuracy at a budget price. While Holosun still trails more established brands in reputation, the SCS proves this upstart is delivering optics innovation built to thrive in the real world.

Let’s dive into a hands-on review exploring if the feature-packed Holosun SCS deserves a spot atop your carry pistol or home defense gun.

Unveiling the Holosun SCS: Detailed Features and Technical Specs

a closeup of Holosun SCS

As I unboxed the SCS and felt the sturdy titanium alloy housing, my first impression was rock-solid durability. The unit feels light yet substantial in hand. Here are the standout features and specs that set it apart from the competition:

Multi-Reticle System

  • The SCS provides flexibility for the user with its multi-reticle system. You can toggle on the fly between a precise 2 MOA dot for longer shots and a lightning quick 32 MOA circle to splash targets up close.
  • Having the option to switch from a pinpoint dot to a situational awareness expanding circle lets you adapt the sight picture to any application, from plinking to home defense.

Solar Charging System

  • The integrated solar panel works in conjunction with an internal rechargeable battery to provide essentially unlimited battery life as long as you see occasional daylight.
  • Even in extremely low light conditions where the solar cells don’t receive charge, the removable CR1632 battery provides 50,000 hours of runtime. You’ll likely never have to change the battery.
  • The solar-charged red dot sight gives you confidence the optic will be powered on when needed while reducing weight versus bulky powered models.

Auto-Adjusting Brightness

  • The Holosun SCS uses advanced LED technology with sensors to detect ambient light conditions. It then auto-adjusts the reticle brightness for optimal visibility without any user intervention.
  • You can override this auto mode with manual controls providing 10 daytime brightness settings for adapting the green or red reticle intensity to the environment.

Technical Specifications

Optical Specs

Category          Specification
Reticle 2 MOA Dot & 32 MOA Circle
Light Wavelength              540nm
Reticle Color              Green or Red
Parallax Free        Yes
Unlimited Eye Relief            Yes
Magnification              1x
Multi-Coatings              Yes

Electronic Specs

Category                 Specification
Power Source              Solar & Battery
Battery Type              Internal Rechargeable Battery
Battery Life (Hours)            Unlimited
Brightness Setting              Auto

Physical Specs

Category                Specification
Window Size                0.58×0.77
Dimension (in)      1.93×1.03×0.91
Weight (oz)                1.3

Mechanical Specs

Category            Specification
Housing Material              Titanium
Surface Finish              Titanium
Adjustment per Click            1 MOA
W&E Travel Range            ±30 MOA

Environment Specs

Category                        Specification
Storage Temperature            -40℃~70℃
Working Temperature            -30℃~60℃
Submersion   IP68
Vibration                5000G

Compatibility and Mounting

Category                  Specification
Compatibility              Compatible with a variety of guns including Glock, Sig Sauer, Smith & Wesson, AR-15, shotguns, Ruger, Springfield Armory, CZ, Beretta, HK VP9, Walther PPQ, Taurus, FN 509, Canik TP9

Additional Information

Category                Specification
Accessories Included            Mounting Screws, User Manual, Lens Cloth, Multi Tool
Warranty Information            Limited Lifetime Warranty; 10 years for LED, 3 years for professional models (LEM suffix)

Performance Analysis: Accuracy, Precision, and Versatility of the Holosun SCS

a closeup of Holosun SCS

Next I wanted to thoroughly test how the Holosun held up during live fire compared to my Aimpoint and Trijicon optics costing considerably more. Here is how this budget-friendly optic stacked up:

Accuracy and Precision

  • The 2 MOA dot offers a precise sight picture for accurate shot placement while remaining quick enough for defensive use. I had no issues consistently hitting steel out to 50 yards.
  • Switching to the 32 MOA circle, I could rapidly splash targets inside 10 yards with both eyes open. The large circle helped acquire and track moving targets smoothly.
  • In various lighting conditions from indoor ranges to bright sunlight, the auto-adjusting brightness kept the Holosun SCS dot visible and crisp.

Versatility

  • Though designed for the Glock MOS footprint, users report solid compatibility using Holosun’s adapter plates to mount the SCS on cuts for RMR and other dots. Always confirm proper fitment for your specific firearm.
  • The rugged aluminum housing and IP67 waterproof rating make the SCS suitable for carry optics and home defense guns where reliability in adverse conditions is paramount.
  • The SCS can pull double duty for accurate plinking and tactical training among other applications thanks to the quickly selectable reticle options.

User Experience: Handling and Operating the Holosun SCS

With any firearm accessory, especially one entrusted for life-saving use, the user experience largely determines success or frustration. Here are my experiences getting the SCS up and running:

Mounting and Zeroing

  • Mounting the Holosun SCS directly to my Glock MOS slide took under 5 minutes using the supplied screws per the manual. The sight clicked solidly into position with minimal wiggle.
  • The Holosun co-witnessed perfectly with my standard Glock suppressor height sights allowing a rapid transition to irons in an unlikely battery failure.
  • Zeroing the red dot was simple using the audible click turrets for 1 MOA adjustments. I got it dialed in quickly in just a few rounds.

Controls and Interface

  • The simple plus and minus buttons to adjust brightness and toggle the circle reticle were intuitive. Even under stress, I could easily locate and press the buttons by feel while maintaining my grip.
  • The auto-brightness mode works well adapting to transitions from indoor to outdoor light without any input needed from the user. I did disable it at times to avoid washing out the dot under bright range lights.
  • My only gripe is you must fully remove the sight to access the battery compartment versus a removable side tray some competitors use.

Mounting Solutions and Compatibility Insights for the Holosun SCS

a closeup of Holosun SCS

While designed specifically for Glocks with MOS cut slides, I discovered the Holosun SCS can equip a diverse array of firearms with some mounting adapters:

  • Direct mount options: Glock MOS handguns, Walther PDP, Smith & Wesson M&P, IWI Masada, Canik, and others.
  • Adapter plates available: Sig P320/P365, FN 509 Tactical, H&K VP9, and more.
  • Picatinny rail mount: Allows use on rifles, carbines, and pistols with weaver/Picatinny rails.

For best results, always use recommended torque specs, quality screws, and thread locker like Loctite 272 during installation. Confirm proper mating between the sight and slide cuts before use to avoid malfunctions.

While designed for Glocks, don’t hesitate researching if the Holosun SCS could serve well on one of your existing firearms. The performance and features make it worth the effort.

Maintaining the Holosun SCS: Longevity, Battery Life, and Care

While today’s duty-grade pistol dots are designed for hard use, proper maintenance optimizes longevity and functionality. Here are my best practices for keeping the SCS in peak form:

Preventative Maintenance

  • Perform visual inspections of the housing after range use to spot any new dings or damage.
  • Keep the lens cover and solar panel free of debris using a microfiber cloth and/or lens cleaning solution.
  • Verify the battery cap is secured before cleaning or storage to prevent water intrusion. Consider a thread locker.

Battery Management

  • Thanks to the integrated solar panel, I’ve never had to replace or recharge the internal battery. Just be sure to allow the optic occasional light exposure.
  • If storing the sight long term, check the battery annually and replace as needed to avoid it draining over time.

Lens Care

  • Using the provided cloth or microfiber material, gently wipe down lenses to remove carbon and dirt buildup which can impede visibility.
  • Avoid using any cleaning chemicals that can damage the special lens coatings designed to increase clarity and durability.

Comparative Review: Holosun SCS vs. Industry Competitors

a closeup of Holosun SCS

The world of red dots has a few dominant legacy brands like Aimpoint and Trijicon which inspire buyer confidence but demand premium price tags. Let’s see how the budget-friendly Holosun SCS stacks up:

VS Trijicon RMR

  • The bomb-proof Trijicon RMR remains the gold standard as a duty-grade mini red dot. However, I found the Holosun SCS virtually identical in clarity and durability at less than half the price.
  • The Holosun matched the RMR’s accuracy in my testing while offering nicer features like solar charging and a circle-dot reticle. The RMR still wins on reputation and accessory support.

VS Leupold DeltaPoint Pro

  • Leupold’s rugged DeltaPoint Pro provides excellent performance with its wide lens and illuminated dot. However, Holosun manages virtually the same glass clarity for over $150 less.
  • The DeltaPoint lacks the auto adjusting brightness and solar backup power the SCS brings to the table. For most users, the Holosun makes sense over the pricier Leupold.

VS Aimpoint ACRO

  • The ACRO offers Aimpoint’s legendary “always on” battery life and absurd durability. But its limited mounting options and lack of quick toggle between precise dot and situational circle reticle give the advantage to the Holosun SCS for a carry optic.

Holosun SCS: Personalized Use Cases and Recommendations

a closeup of Holosun SCS

Based on my experience, I think the adaptable Holosun SCS provides the best fit for:

Everyday Carry

With the SCS riding on my daily carry Glock 19, I appreciate the quick target acquisition and accuracy while knowing it’s always ready thanks to the solar power. For conceal carrying, the low profile, lightweight, and durable design give peace of mind.

Home Defense

For home defense, the Holosun SCS makes target identification and engagement effortless, even under stress. The auto-adjusting reticle avoids fumbling with buttons while allowing rapid shots inside 10 yards with the circle reticle.

Competition Shooting

The Holosun would serve competition shooters well who want the flexibility to toggle from speed circle for close targets to precise dot engaging further paper. Its durability also holds up to heavy use.

FAQs on the Holosun SCS

Here I address some common questions about this optic:

How long can the Holosun run solely on solar power?

Holosun claims the solar cells can keep the optic powered indefinitely even in low light. My experience confirms you can go days between brief light exposure without issue.

Does the Holosun fit RMR cuts?

The SCS fits Glock MOS cut slides without a plate. Holosun and aftermarket plates allow compatibility with slides milled for RMR patterns. Always confirm proper fit.

How does the Holosun glass clarity compare to Aimpoint or Trijicon?

While those are proven optics, I found the Holosun multi-coated lenses virtually indistinguishable in clarity and durability even under mag dumps.

Final Verdict: Is the Holosun SCS Right for You?

After extensively testing the Holosun SCS against far more expensive legacy dots, I’m confident awarding this newcomer optic 4 out of 5 stars.

The Holosun SCS proved remarkably durable, shaking off drops and hundreds of rounds without issue. The circle-dot reticle allows both surgical precision and rapid target acquisition. And the integrated solar panel and battery provides essentially unlimited runtime.

My only gripes came from somewhat clumsy buttons and battery access compared to similarly priced models. However, the functionality shines through those minor nitpicks.

Considering its outstanding balance of features, accuracy, and durability at a budget cost, the Holosun SCS deserves top consideration as an EDC or home defense optic. It over-delivers performance typically exclusive to dots costing twice as much.

The Holosun SCS reflects an exciting look at the next generation of optics. This budget-friendly overachiever brings field-ready innovation to elevate the capabilities of serious shooters without breaking the bank.

About the author

The name's Chris. Just a regular dude who loves firearms. I've been shooting since I was a kid. My old man taught me the ropes.

I'll never forget the first time I missed an easy shot on a buck, thanks to a bum scope. The image was fuzzier than my dog's butt. After that, I got obsessed with understanding scopes. What makes the good ones tick and the bad ones trash. After a few years and a few thousand bucks, I learned what separates the winners from the losers. Once I had a good stockpile of knowledge, I launched this site.

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