A few months back, I got the urge to dabble in the Rim Fire Pistol Optics division in Steel Challenge. Given I was still in curious mode and didn’t want to invest much into that curiosity, I set my sights on a pistol that would fit the bill. However, I wasn’t sure what optic I wanted to throw on it. My gut reaction was to snatch up another Trijicon SRO, but felt that was a bit pricey for the project. I knew I wanted an optic with a larger window and I wanted something reliable, but I couldn’t pinpoint the right optic immediately. It dawned on me a while later that maybe the Primary Arms SLx RS-10 might be the ticket and I reached out to my friends at Primary Arms to see if they would mind sending me one to review. They agreed and here we are.
Full disclosure time. As I stated, Primary Arms supplied the optic at no cost to me. They didn’t ask me to review it and they didn’t offer any compensation for this review. That said, Primary Arms is an affiliate and I do have a monetary relationship with them. What that means is that I will receive a small commission from any sales that result from anyone who purchases a product from the Primary Arms website following the use of a link found on a post or page on this blog. Nevertheless, the opinions posted here are mine and are shared with the reader’s trust in mind as I understand readers use what I write to inform purchase decisions. I value that trust and don’t take it lightly. Readers come first, everything else is secondary. Now back to the review.
I sought out the RS-10 for a couple of reasons. As I mentioned, I wanted something with a large window that was reliable. I also didn’t want to spend too much and I would have gladly spent the $199 on it. I also wanted something light that could be mounted to a Picatinny rail. The RS-10 came close to ticking almost all the boxes and it ticked more boxes than any other value priced red dot sight I could think of.
So for under $200, what do we get? Well, we get:
- The SLx RS-10 itself,
- two torx mounting screws,
- a picatinny rail adapter,
- an MOS adapter plate,
- two torx head keys,
- one flat head head key,
- a rubber optic cover,
- a manual,
- some thread locker,
- a cleaning cloth,
- and a CR2032 battery.
The optic uses the Docter/Noblex mounting footprint. Support for this footprint exists for most optics ready pistols using an adapter plate, but not for all of them. As such, it’s something to confirm before taking the plunge.
Walking the optic from front to back, we first find the 7075 T6 aluminum housing which is very common for pistol mountable red dot sights. The housing surrounds and protects the 23x19mm multi-coated lens. The lens isn’t the largest in the market, but it’s large enough to provide a large view port that provides ample space to find and track the 3 MOA dot while shooting. Depending on the firearm the dot may leave the view port under recoil, but the view port is large enough that the dot may remain in the view port given a sufficiently good grip combined with moderately low recoil.
Right behind the lens on the left hand side of the housing we find the brightness control buttons. The buttons are a bit on the small side which may present some difficulty for folks with large fingers or when manipulated with gloves, but they do provide excellent tactile feedback when pressed. The button nearest the front increases the brightness and turns on the optic when pressed for three seconds. The button towards the back of the optic decreases the brightness. Pressing both buttons simultaneously, which can be quite challenging as the simultaneous operation is not very forgiving, for three seconds will power the optic off. The optic provides ten (10) brightness levels and is night vision compatible.
On the right hand side opposite of the control buttons, we have the battery tray that is held in place by a torx screw. The battery tray holds the CR2032 which should provide 40K of operation assuming the optic is used with middle of the road brightness setting.
Following right behind the lens housing hood we have the mounting screws. Right behind that we find the exposed LED emitter that projects the 3 MOA dot onto the multi-coated lens. The 3 MOA dot is a good usable size. I would love to see larger MOA dot sizes offered in the future as I tend to prefer them, but a 3 MOA dot is workable and reasonable given the price point of this red dot sight. The dot is crisp and doesn’t appear to suffer from any flickering under recoil.
A little bit further towards the rear we find the windage and elevation adjustment dials which are found on the right side and top of the optic respectively. The supplied flat head key or another small flat head bit or tool can be used to make adjustments. Surprisingly for the price point, the adjustment dials provide extremely positive tactile feedback. While I could not find any supporting documentation to confirm this, I suspect each tactile click represents a half MOA adjustment.
That’s the optic in a nutshell. While the optic is marketed as a “rugged” optic, I haven’t attempted to break it sufficiently to provide an opinion as to how well this optic will hold up against hard abuse or in austere conditions. I will say that I am quite impressed with the quality to price ratio of this optic. I’ve had it mounted to an AR-15 (chambered in 5.56) and a 22LR pistol. In both cases, the dot has held zero and has functioned remarkably well. As such, I think the RS-10 is a viable value-priced candidate optic for intermediate cartridge rifles and pistols that are used for recreation, concealed carry, or home defense purposes.