I have been looking for a new budget-friendly scope for my AR and was reading up about some new scopes, viewing reviews and visiting shows and came upon the Holosun stand presenting its 501C-GR which is their green reticle version.
Now before I go into the review, for those of my readers that are not familiar with me, I am an army veteran, an older one, having fought in Lebanon in the ’80s, and the two gulf wars, yup, both of them. There are many more experienced warriors out there than me, but I have my four decades of army service, and I am still alive and was never wounded, so yup, boohoo no purple heart but heck, I get to tell my grandkids loads of legendary hero stories from the mysterious deserts of the middle east.
Now back to reality; so here I am at the Holosun stand, and the representative gives me the 501C-GR to check out, and guess what, I did check it out. Just for your information, Holosun is an American company based out in California. I wish I had one of these back in the day, which was before the internet and even smartphones, so I guess today’s generation has the benefit of technology. Now with this, just one last comment before we get down to details; do not rely on your sight to make you accurate, first learn to shoot, get accurate without sight or scope, and then once you reach your zenith, add the sight and become a kick-ass shooter.
Holosun 510C-GR Review
The Holosun 510C is a LED powered scope that provides a default 2MOA dot/65MOA ring reticle, the GR stands for Green, so the reticle is Green.
The optical mechanism deployed by the Holosun 510C is reflex, and this means that the reticle is superimposed onto the lens, this makes it easier and faster for target acquisition, and with two night light options, you get excellent choice for all light variations. Now, add to this the green reticle, which in my opinion beats a red one hands down, since it is much easier on the eye. This eye ease is compounded by unlimited eye relief.
The 501C-GR has three reticles to choose from, just hold down the “-” for three seconds, and you will switch between the reticles. The first option is the default 2MOA dot/65MOA ring reticle, the second is the 2MOA dot, and the third choice is 650MOA ring. The choice is up to you; some prefer to stick with one option; others like to play around with it for specific situations. I ain’t no super-sniper, so I just used the default and hit what I aimed at.
If you do buy this scope, you will get their standard co-witness quick disconnect mount, and this is actually a very useful took and it worked well with my rifle. I got a great line up between my front post and the 510C.
Now for some important information; when you get the Holosun 501C-GR in the box, you need to adjust it once you fit it. I have found that no matter what manufacturers claim, scopes never come adjusted, so make adjustments. In my case, the optic was shooting to the low right, but with a few tweaks using their small tool I got the reticle to 50-yard accuracy. Just so you know, the Holosun maximum adjustment is +/- 50MOA from the center and not the 40MOA it states in the manual.
Actual shooting sometimes takes a toll on the sights and scopes used, but not with this little beastie. It stood firm and to its toll of recoil, vibration and a few hits. In fact, I put over 300 rounds through my AR, and the 510C-GR stood firm and retained its accuracy throughout.
Here are some facts about the Holosun 510C-GR; its main body made out of a single machined 6061 Aluminium, while the optic hood is crafted out of a titanium alloy for extra light, but superior hardness and both materials don’t rust. This device is waterproof and comes with an IP rating of 67, so you can submerge it without any issues.
Since this is a combat effective or duty optic, it has to be rugged, and it is, weighing in at 8.3 ounces, it’s not too heavy to be noticed, and is genuinely light enough for full-field deployment. Another interesting feature is its night compatibility that allows you to use this sight in temperatures ranging from -22° to 140°, with this in mind; I have yet to encounter such temperatures in the locations visit.
Now let’s take a look at the power source. This is a nifty feature, and it comes with two power sources, the sun or solar power and the battery backup which is useful on downcast days and of course at night. So with two power sources you get extra longevity for your illuminated reticles. The battery pack uses a CR2032 cell that gives you 50,000 hours of use when only using the dot if you use the full reticle spectrum than this drops to 20,000 hours…and, to be honest, WTF…if you can’t carry a spare CR2032 then you shouldn’t carry a battery-powered sight.
This model comes with two modes, the auto mode which selects the power source for the reticle and adjusts the reticle brightness to the ambient light of your environment. If the device needs more power to illuminate the reticle, it will switch from solar to the battery, so you don’t need to play around with anything, the 510C-GR does it all for you. I believe that everyone just uses the auto mode 99% of the time, but there might be instances when you need to go manual, but personally I have yet to encounter such an instance.
The manual mode is where you select the reticle brightness by using the “+” and the “-” buttons, and you get 12 different levels to choose from. Just press either the plus or minus for 3 seconds, and you switch between modes of brightness.
In its basic state, the sight is always on; you don’t need to turn it off since the auto option goes into sleep mode even at night when the sight is not in use for ten minutes. Once the sight detects a movement during sleep mode, it will wake up; this is what Holosun calls “shake awake”.
Summary of Features
Here is a summary of the overall features you get in this model; this is a parallax-free optic with unlimited eye relief. You get 1x magnification, and the lenses are multi-coated. There is no integrated laser with this device, and the light source is LED. As stated above, the battery is a single cell CR2032 that provides a maximum 50,000 hours of life, and has 10 daylight brightens settings with 2 NV compatible settings.
The body is 6061 aluminum with a titanium alloy hood, and the surface finish is MAO Black. The optical adjustments are 0.5 MOA with a ±50 MOA W&E travel range. The working temperature is -22℉ – 140℉ while the storage temperature is -40℉ to 158℉ and this is a fully submersible model with an IP67 rating. It also withstands up to 1000g vibration.
The physical dimensions include a window size of .91” x 1.12”, the overall dimensions are 3.3” x 1.6” x 1.8” and it weighs 8.3 ounces, its central height is 1.41”.
Now let’s look at the price, it’s under $400, so you get excellent value for money, and this one comes with so many features is just too hard to beat. Also, consider the rugged construction, the accuracy and reliability of the reticle once zeroed and the overall experience.
If you are seeking an affordable but high-quality sight that provides you with excellent illuminated targeting solutions then look no further. This is perhaps the best option on the market, and I for one am keen to use it again and again. The bottom line is this; sure you can get some really amazing sights, but when it comes to simplicity with accuracy and automated illuminated target acquisition, you don’t get better than this one.