Sightmark Ultra Shot Series Reflex Sights
Sightmark continues to expand on their line of reflex sights, and I was glad to visit their booth at SHOT Show this year. I’ll be posting articles on a couple of Sightmark’s new products in coming weeks, but I wanted to take a moment to review the [easyazon_link identifier=”B001LZS6NG” locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]Ultra Shot[/easyazon_link] series of reflex sights that have been on the market for a few years now.
There are currently (4) options in the Ultra Shot family of sights:
- Ultra Shot (base model with 4 minor difference selections)
- Ultra Shot QD Digital Switch
- Ultra Shot Pro Spec NV QD
- Ultra Dual Shot Pro Spec NV QD.
Sightmark Ultra Shot General Characteristics
The [easyazon_link identifier=”B001LZS6NG” locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]Sightmark Ultra Shot[/easyazon_link] reflex sight has a rectangular lens, protected by a strong aluminum housing, providing a very good field of view. The remainder of the sight body is made of composite polymer material. Sightmark is using high quality Japanese optics glass, giving the shooter very good optical clarity. The double lens system eliminates parallax and allows for accurate firing even from the periphery of the sight.
I’ve used [easyazon_link identifier=”B000KKFVRC” locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]EOTech[/easyazon_link] sights on my patrol rifle for around 8 years, and actually prefer a rectangular sight picture to a circular one for reflex sights. I feel I get a better sight picture of the target, especially when shooting with both eyes open. Although the [easyazon_link identifier=”B001LZS6NG” locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]Sightmark Ultra Shot[/easyazon_link] does not have the same small reticle size or clarity advantages of the EOTech, you get several similar reticle options for 1/5th the price! Considering the Ultra Shot is designed to be a reflex shooting optic, the minor differences in reticle size and clarity are really not that noticeable during those quick, pop-up shooting situations.
The base model Ultra Shot is designed with a built-in Weaver-style mount designed to be mounted to a standard [easyazon_link identifier=”B001RXR3OU” locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]M1913 Picatinny rail[/easyazon_link]. There are (2) standard Allen bolts exposed on the right sight of the housing to tighten the sight onto the rail for proper mounting. Mounting the Ultra Shot to my selected AR-15 was both easy and fast. The optic was mounted and ready for zeroing in about a minute. The Ultra Shot is water-resistant and shock-proof for added durability, giving the shooter confidence during wet weather conditions and shooting drills requiring heavy movement or jostling of the firearm.
Sightmark Ultra Shot Reticles
The reticle controls are located on the back side of the sight body, underneath a protective hood. The controls are changed by a lever that is easily manipulated, even while holding the rifle up at the ready. There are (4) reticles options on the basic Ultra Shot model, and we will discuss them as they are positioned left-to-right on the optic housing lever.
The first is a 30 MOA crosshair circle (50 MOA total with subtensions), and a 3 MOA center dot. This selection is really nice for longer range targets. The second is the 5 MOA red dot, which works very well for close range work but may be a bit too large for longer-range accuracy. The third reticle is a 50 MOA crosshair with a 3 MOA center dot. Finally, there is a 50 MOA circle with 3 MOA center dot. Each reticle provides a red image for sight clarity and fast target acquisition. The Sightmark Interlok Internal locking system holds zero very well so the shooter does not have to worry about a roving zero when firing multiple round volleys.
The elevation control is an Allen screw located on top of the housing, behind the optic glass. Counter-clockwise turns will raise the point of impact, while clockwise turns will lower the point of impact. The [easyazon_link identifier=”B00TOKD51S” locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]Ultra Shot[/easyazon_link] windage control is also an Allen screw located on the left side of the housing behind the illumination control knob. Clock-wise rotations move point of impact to the right, while counter-clockwise turns will move point of impact to the left.
Zeroing the [easyazon_link identifier=”B004TDIDW6″ locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]Sightmark Ultra Shot[/easyazon_link] was relatively simple, and only took me about 10-15 minutes to accomplish. Once zeroed I could confidently expect about 1.5 to 2.0 MOA accuracy at 100 yards. Shots were taken from both a seated bench rest, and from a prone position with the AR-15 resting on a bag. The slightly larger reticle sizes are likely the culprit for the larger groupings, but again the Ultra Shot is designed more for close-in reflexive type shooting and not longer range precision. With that in mind I’m O.K. with those results.
The brightness controls are located on the left side of the sight in the form of a studded turn knob. Brightness settings are clearly marked in white, and there is also a silver indent on the housing’s side to mark where the actual control setting is located. The off setting is labelled “0”, and has the largest stud making turning the sight off easier and more confident. With (5) brightness settings, the Ultra Shot provides very good options for daylight and low-light shooting conditions. I found the (3) setting to be a good all-around position.
Each Ultra Shot comes with a soft neoprene cover, a cleaning cloth, Allen wrench for mounting and adjustments, and (1) [easyazon_link identifier=”B000SOPG5C” locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]CR1623 3V battery[/easyazon_link]. The battery life has been pretty good with my Ultra Shot optics, with Sightmark advertising 25-120 hours depending upon high or low setting. I would not recommend leaving the power on when the optic is not in use.
Sightmark Ultra Shot Specifications
- Construction Material – Composite body with Aluminum protective hood
- Dimensions – 3.23″ x 1.81″ x 2.24″ (82 x 46 x 57mm)
- Weight – 5.6 oz.
- Magnification – 1x
- Objective Lens Size – 33 x 24mm
- Field of View – 35 meters @ 100 meters
- Eye Relief – Infinite
- Reticle Options – (4) Patterns (Circle & Cross, Cross, Circle & Dot, Dot)
- Reticle Color – Red
- Battery – CR1632 3V
- Battery Life – 25-120 hours
- Brightness Settings – 1 to 5 and “Off”
- Max Recoil – Up to .50 caliber
- Operating Temperature – 0°F to 120°F
- MSRP – $95.99
- Brownell’s – $79.99 (Where I got my 2 Ultra Shots)
- Amazon – $73.64.
Ultra Shot QD Digital Switch
MSRP – $119.99 ([easyazon_link identifier=”B004TDIDW6″ locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]much less on Amazon[/easyazon_link])
Ultra Shot Pro Spec NV QD
MSRP – $155.99 ([easyazon_link identifier=”B004TDPPR2″ locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]much less on Amazon[/easyazon_link])
Ultra Dual Shot Pro Spec NV QD
MSRP – $179.99 ([easyazon_link identifier=”B004TDPQ26″ locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]much less on Amazon[/easyazon_link])
Until a few months before SHOT Show this year I had only seen Sightmark reflex sights a few times. Though the design options seemed consistent with several competitors, their bargain prices left me a little leery of the quality and endurance. Sometimes you get what you pay for, and the importance of quality firearm optics is nothing to toy with.
However, one of the sites I visit frequently for good deals on gun gear had a really good deal on a [easyazon_link identifier=”B001LZS6NG” locale=”US” tag=”bluesheecom-20″]Sightmark Ultra Shot[/easyazon_link]. The reviews on that site and several others all seemed positive, so I decided to give the Sightmark Ultra Shot a try.
I’m glad I did. I was so happy with the first Ultra Shot I purchased, that I have already purchased a second one.