Cover Photo Credit: Dynamic Weapon Solutions
Today, I’ll review an interesting titanium optic: the Holosun HE508T-RE X2 (also known as V2).
I’ve browsed the web for durable optics at an acceptable price and found that the Holosun HE508T-RE X2 proves its worth as a cost-effective option for the casual shooter.
This second version (the HE508T X2) is a solid improvement over the former as it comes in a very durable titanium casing with a couple more added features and redesigns. We’ll expand on this later on.
Do note that this review is about the red dot version, the HE508T-RD X2. The Holosun red dot HE508T-GR X2 has been discontinued, sadly.
We’ll talk about The Holosun red dot sight and its main features, how it’s been improved over the years, what it excels at, some pros & cons, and we’ll also list some cool similar alternatives if you’re looking for decent pistol optics.
Let’s check it out.
The Manufacturer’s Idea
The red dot sight market has become pretty stale throughout the years, and usually, most manufacturers use the material and produce high-quality items that rarely see problems or malfunctions besides being crooked and canted on the side.
Other than that, there’s not much to talk about other than glass quality, casings, and stability, and this is what the titanium-frame HE508T X2 offers over the first version.
Holosun truly outdid themselves with this little number, and they’ve seen growth throughout the years with new and perfected optics, making for a solid contributor to the market.
Check out our red dot optics buyer’s guide for pistols for more info.
The Trijicon Lawsuit Problems
The thing is, the massive improvements to the HE508T-RD X2 are owed to the button changes in particular.
A competitor manufacturer, Trijicon, had filed a lawsuit due to the similar design of the buttons, and it has since been settled and resolved, as of September 3rd, 2020. This is what largely prompted Holosun to introduce the changes.
Holosun apparently infringed some design blueprint patents and was forced to change the design to avoid any further problems. This open reflex optic red dot sight has since become a strong favorite among handgun enthusiasts.
That said, the optic has value, and just saying that it’s a V2 of the original doesn’t do it justice. It’s still a solid and cost-effective optic for handguns, so let’s check out the features, specs, and what makes it a great handgun optic.
What’s the Holosun HE508T-RD X2 Good For?
The Holosun HE508T X2 optic for handguns is a nifty piece of technology that offers you an edge in accuracy to quickly acquire a target at various ranges.
This improved version provides reliability, longevity, and durability.
Among the X2 model improvements, there’s the “lock mode,” the buttons are redesigned and located a little lower on the frame, and they finally added titanium housing, which improves stability and durability. At this price range, it’s an absolute snag.
My opinion is that it’s a great red dot sight with a multi-coated lens, 2 MOA dot and 32 MOA circle, and a very long battery life. It’s suitable for those long hunting treks during the day and for those of you who like to do timed pistol sessions with multiple targets.
With your order, you get a T10 L key for easy installation, CR1632 batteries, and a lens cloth.
The Long Battery Life Sells It
In contrast to other red dot sights and models you may find on the market, the Holosun HE508T-RD X2 offers a Super LED, high-capacity, lithium coin CR1632 battery.
It offers 50,000 hours of battery life (on the medium setting), which is more than enough for long hunting trips and sessions. The batteries are side-loaded, in contrast to other companies that stubbornly use bottom-loading optics. This makes it easier and faster to swap the batteries, without removing the optics from the gun.
Additionally, the solar panels are located on the top, which further extends the battery life. The solar failsafe panels make sure you’ll use it for a long time.
If the battery dies, it can carry on with the solar juice it has gathered and adjust its brightness automatically, provided you’re shooting during the day. It also has an auto-shutoff and shake awake feature which activates when you move it.
This is very impressive if you compare it to other brands and models of optics in the same price range, and many will find this almost necessary.
It gets annoying when your batteries die during target practice sessions. This may be especially true for home defense.
Construction and Durability
If you’re wondering, the letter “T” in the model name stands for titanium. This is where Holosun HE508T-RD X2’s durability comes from since—apart from the housing—the finish is also titanium, making it very stable.
The titanium construction is strong yet lightweight, and this is a total win for a handgun red dot optic in this price range. You won’t even feel the 2 oz added weight.
When activated, the ‘Lock Mode’ feature prevents any accidental changes in your adjustments, as this can sometimes happen. This is very useful, and for those of you who don’t know, it can be very annoying when you make an oopsie in the adjustments.
The durable construction also helps with all kinds of aggressive recoil from rifles, shotguns, and pistols.
Moreover, the relatively small frame fits most Glock 19 holsters.
When compared to the Holosun 507C, which is made of aluminum, the 508T is head and shoulders above.
Expect standard lens clarity on the Holosun 508T.
It’s not exactly crystal clear, but it’s still good considering what you pay for it. The lenses and optics are multi-coated for better light transmission and wear resistance.
These layers offer glare vision reduction that most of you will find very convenient. The lens offers a clear and bright picture with decent contrast and it works great in daylight.
I am annoyed by the slight blue tint that’s easily noticeable, but I’m sure it won’t bother most gun enthusiasts. Objectively, it’s just not that distracting, especially when you compare it to the Trijicon RMR Red Dot Sight, Holosun’s main competitor.
The Three Reticle Options
As for the reticle, Holosun has a little trick called the MRS (multiple reticle system) that offers three different reticle options and combinations of small dots and circles you can choose from.
These being the 2 MOA dot, the 2 MOA dot with 32 MOA ring Holosun circle dot, and the 32 MOA ring without a dot. Check it out and see if some of these work out for you.
These reticle options are very convenient for those with astigmatism, and I strongly recommend you use the larger circle reticles.
The 2 MOA dot is the simplest of all three, but my personal favorite is the Holosun circle dot with 32 MOA rings that gives me the edge for fast and precise target acquisition.
You’d be delighted to find that the Holosun 508T has 12 brightness settings. This is why they went for a simple and lockable design on the buttons. It can be pretty tedious to adjust and modify the settings.
The 12 brightness settings are easily adjustable, ten of which are when you shoot during the daylight, and two when you need night vision. The daylight settings are clear and bright just enough so you won’t have any problems with the reticle fading on a scorching day.
To be honest, I believe that most people won’t be using the two night vision settings, but you can easily make them work for you. It’s commendable how Holosun includes them for a low price, in comparison to other manufacturers’ models.
If you’re looking for pistol lights, you can also check out our buyer’s guide for the best pistol lights for 2021.
Additional Accessories and Features
Here are some more interesting features for the Holosun 508T, such as the lens cloth for easy cleaning and included batteries.
Additionally, the low Picatinny rail mount that comes with your order can come in handy if you want to use the optic as a small sight for a pistol caliber carbine or a shotgun.
However, if you truly wish to use it on a pistol slide, I have good news for you. The optic has the same footprint as the Trijicon RMR, which is super convenient as the RMR has a similar build as a very popular reflex sight. You won’t have any issues mounting it.
As for windage and elevation turrets, they are recessed into the housing, and they’re simple to install and modify with a screwdriver. What’s best is that they won’t be snapped off accidentally because it’s a Titanium housing.
Finally, the Holosun 508T is waterproof and can handle all kinds of harsh and wet weather conditions. Just be mindful of the LED emitter and be careful not to block it with too much water.
The Holosun HE508T-RD X2 Specifications
- Dimension (in inches): 1.78” x 1.15” x 1.5”
- Weight: 2.0 oz with batteries
- Window size: 0.63” x 0.91”
- Housing material: Titanium
- Surface finish: Titanium and multi-coatings
- Housing color: Matte Black
- Reticle: Red 2 MOA dot & 32 MOA Circle
- Light wavelength: 650 nm (nanometers)
- Magnification: 1X zoom
- Adjustment per click: 1 MOA
- Windage adjustment: ±50 MOA
- Elevation adjustment: ±50 MOA
- Brightness: 10 DL (daylight operation) & 2 NV (night vision)
- Light source: Super LED
- Unlimited eye relief: Yes
- Parallax free: Yes
- Multi-coatings: Yes
- Battery type: CR1632 Lithium Coin
- Battery life: 50,000 hrs
- Storage temperature: -40°C up to 70°C
- Working temperature: -30°C up to 60°C
- Submersion: IP67
Pros & Cons of the Holosun HE508T-RD X2
- Durable Titanium housing
- Lightweight and waterproof
- Shake awake feature (Turns on when you shake it)
- One of the longest battery lives for handgun optics (50,000 hours)
- Easy battery replacement with solar panel on top
- Includes low picatinny mount that’s easy to install
- 12 brightness settings along with night vision
- Three reticle options available
- Users report faulty housing
- The titanium finish may fade off quickly
- Some report unstable housing
- The dot might cant on the sides
- Some won’t like the minor blue tint on the lens (not much of a problem)
Here are some frequently asked questions about the Holosun optic.
Does the Holosun HE508T-RD X2 Come With Mounting Screws?
Yes! You’ll need the mounting screws to install it and they make sure it stays very stable, not causing problems with canting.
Is the Picatinny Rail Mount on the HE508T-RD X2 Removable?
Yes, the Picatinny rail mount is removable on the optic. With this, you can mount the optic to an adapter plate like a MOS adapter plate if you’re using Glocks, for instance.
You can also directly mount the slide if it’s milled for the RMR Trijicon standard footprint. It works smoothly and with no problems.
Can the Holosun Optic Rely on Its Solar Panel Alone?
No, the solar panel is designed to help with battery life.
It works only when the battery dies and this is a final resort to keep the optics functioning. It’s not a good idea to rely solely on the tiny solar panel.
What Do the Others Have to Say?
Here are some customer reviews that testify for the Holosun HE508T X2 handgun optic.
Source: Midway USA
Here you can see how some orders come with canted reticles.
If you’re interested in the Holosun HE508T X2, you can also check out these other optics with long battery life that are also suitable for handguns. All three are mostly similar, but each offers something different.
You’ve heard of this one, right?
Vortex Optics offers the Venom Reflex sight with a 3 MOA dot that’s easy to see in daylight, a multi-coated lens that offers you a new dimension of target acquisition during your sessions, and has a very wide field of view. You can also find the 6 MOA version as well if you want more range.
In contrast to the Holosun HE508T X2’s titanium housing, the durable, low-profile aluminum housing is lighter, waterproof, shock-resistant, and built to be installed on firearms with aggressive recoil, not just for pistols.
You have your controls for power and dot intensity perfectly located on the left side of the product and it’s pretty easy to install.
Trijicon is an innovative manufacturer of red dot sights, and their LED-powered RMR Type 2 is the definite gold standard of micro red dot sights for handguns. This is an expensive option, but it’s a premium one, having outstanding characteristics, quality, and features not found in other products.
With a weight of 1.2 ounces, four-year battery life, robust casing, night vision compatibility, 1x zoom magnification, and 3.25 MOA dot size, the RMR Type 2 is one of the most versatile pieces of technology in red dot optics. It’s built to last and to aid your precision and accuracy.
It’s waterproof, easy to adjust, and the clicks are audible. The tint is bluer than that of the Holosun, but that’s not much of a problem. Watch a video comparison for the Holosun 508T vs the Trijicon RMR here.
The final runner-up is the Leupold DeltaPoint Pro. It has crystal-clear glass and the widest view among the mid-range priced handgun optics.
It’s a standard 2.5 MOA that’s perfect for close-up and long-range shots up to 20 yards. It weighs 1.95 oz and has a robust, double-hood casing that’s fogproof and waterproof up to 22 feet of depth.
The battery is slightly lower than the Trijicon RMR; nevertheless, it’s still a decent optic for your handgun. The motion-activated auto-on is the main feature here, as it activates when you shake it a bit. But, it’s not night vision compatible, so keep this in mind.
For these features and top-quality material, they could’ve set the price of the Leupold DeltaPoint Pro much higher, so snag one if you have the chance.
So to sum it all up, if you’re looking for a durable pistol optic with a very long and preservable battery life, get yourself a Holosun HE508T X2, red dot, or green dot. It’s one of the most sought-after optics, and not just because of the extended battery life, auto shut-off, and shake-awake features.
The titanium makes it durable, it’s lightweight, pretty stable, and it comes in three reticle choices. I prefer the regular mini red dot reticle. Although some users report slight canting to the right side, this can be easily fixed with a little tweaking.
Check out our buyer’s guide for the best handgun safes for 2021.
What I love most about this optic is that with all these necessary features, it comes at a very decent price that won’t burn a hole in your pocket. You can find a lot of mini red dot reflex models on the market today, but Holosun tries to focus on carefully pricing this red dot optic series.
They prove their worth in longevity, optic efficiency, durability, and value, and I strongly recommend it if you’re looking for mid-range optics that let you stay at the ranges longer without bothering about batteries.