Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot 1.8: Red Dot, Israeli style
Manufactured in Israel by Meprolight, the RDS Tru-Dot 1.8 is a red dot sight engineered to take a beating and keep working: let's take a look at it!
Meprolight, Ltd. is a company headquartered in the Israeli town of Or Akiva, and is part of the SK Group – the holding owned by Samy Katsav that controls five major Israeli defence industries, including IWI (Israeli Weapons Industry).
More specifically, Meprolight is the SK Group's dedicated gunsights, optics and aiming systems manufacturer; its products are used by the military and law enforcement organizations of Israel and countless other Countries, and are very popular among civilian shooters.
One of the latest entries in the company's product catalogue, the Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot 1.8, is a solid and reliable red dot sight that will offer versatility and performance to both civilian and professional operators.
The Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot 1.8 red dot sight is meant for those shooters who know exactly what they want from their gunsight and are willing to pay the right price for that level of quality.
LOOKS LIKE... BUT IT'S NOT
Despite a superficial outer resemblance with the EOTech's line of holographic weapon sights, first introduced in 1998, the looks is basically all the Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot 1.8 and the EOTech HWS sights share – except maybe the fact that, just like the EOTech, the Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot is built on a machined, MIL-STD Type III black hard-anodized aircraft-grade aluminum structure.
What the Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot is not is a holographic sight. While holographic sights rely on a laser diode and a series of collimating reflectors and gratings to create an image within a sealed space filled with inert gas, red dot sights use nothing but a LED and what is basically a game of mirrors – hence the alternate name of "reflex sights".
The main advantage of the more basic red dot technology over the overall more advanced holographic technology is that the latter was quite recently found to have an issue that the earlier hasn't concerning accuracy (or loss thereof) in high-temperature environments.
Whoever follows industry news will know by now that EOTech holographic weapon sights were found to suffer from significant point-of-impact shifting at temperatures of 49°C/120°F.
While this may not be a factor for a Police force in a European or north American Country – and much less for a civilian shooter – it will indeed be for an Israeli or NATO military unit engaged in battle in a middle-Eastern desert. The use of a conventional red dot technology gets rid of the POI shift issue.
The Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot comes with a 1.8 MOA red dot (hence the name) and offers an unlimited eye relief and a 33mm x 20mm / 1.3" x 0.87" wide viewing area with multicoated special glass lenses protected by a black hard polymer shell.
The Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot is fogproof, waterproof and shockproof and tested for resistance to environmental elements as per MIL-STD 810F standards.
The power management and saving features of the Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot 1.8 red dot gunsight deserve a deeper look.
Unlike other commercial-off-the-shelf or military-off-the-shelf optics which rely on CR123A batteries for power, the RDS Tru-Dot employs a single AA battery hosted in a sealed compartment on the front right portion of the chassis, protected by a screw-on polymer cap.
The Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot sight comes with a movement sensor-based auto shut-on/shut-off system that will automatically turn the sight on when the shooter raises his or her gun and will automatically shut it off when not in use. One single battery will provide thousands of hours of continuous runtime.
Two ½-MOA-per-click dials – located on top and on the front left side of the device and flush-fit to prevent accidental snagging and loss of zero – allow the adjustment of the illuminated dot for elevation and windage. A field tool, a coin or a cartridge rim is all it takes to operate them.
A black dial on the left rear side of the device is used to turn the power off manually or to adjust the brightness of the dot on four different levels – the fourth one being an NVG-friendly mode that's compatible with night vision devices of any generations to allow both civilian and professional use of this red dot sight. The Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot sight is also compatible with optical magnifiers.
The Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot 1.8 red dot sight is 116mm / 4.56" long, 60mm / 2.55" high and 2.24" wide, and weighs around 300 grams / 0.5 oz without a battery. An integrated MIL-STD 1913 mount makes it compatible with any Picatinny rail. It will work at a -40°C / +71°C (-40°F to 160°F) temperature range, and is covered by a 1-year limited warranty.
The retail price will vary from Country to Country, but generally speaking it ranges around €670.00 in Europe and around $695.00 in the United States: it's still cheaper than an EOTech, a Trijicon and even an Aimpoint in some Countries, at more or less the same quality and performance level.
The Meprolight RDS Tru-Dot 1.8 red dot sight is just the right companion for your modern sporting rifle – particularly if your MSR is an IWI Tavor X95 – and can withstand all the abuse you'll decide to put it under, coming out of it with the look and feel of a well-worn accessory... but hey, what's a warrior without some scars?