Why Choose XS Big Dot Sights: VSO Gun Channel Weighs In

xs big dot feature

The following is a breakdown of a good video by the VSO Gun Channel about XS Big Dot Sights. Read up and see if you agree or disagree.

You wake up to the sound of breaking glass. You ease into the hallway, your nightstand gun at the low ready. Sensing movement to your front, you bring the gun up as a shadow rushes toward you. The three glowing dots center on the dark mass and you fire. The shadowy figure is now on you as you fight for your life. How did you miss?

Drawing in an emergency gives you a “snapshot in time” to decide to fire or not. There’s no thinking it over and certainly no time for meticulous sight alignment. “All you have is what you’ve got right here. What if the dot you have identified as your front sight isn’t actually your front sight?” What if it’s one of the rear dots?

Left and Center: 3-dot night sights. Which one is the front dot? Right: XS big dot sight. Note the single vertical line to center the dot.

Reading Your Sights Wrong: How Big Dot Sights Get It Right

In the video linked above, the guys from VSO Gun Channel show us just how easy it is to read your sights wrong in the dark. The consequences aren’t pretty. Their answer is the XS big dot sights system, which makes it impossible to misread your sight picture.

Left: XS big dot sights; Right: Traditional 3-dot sights.

The XS big dot sights are based on low notch African big game rifle sights with an ivory front bead. Although not as fine for target work, the front bead is easily seen when facing down a charging beast. The XS sights use a tritium front dot with a vertical tritium line on the rear notch. Just line them up. There’s no doubt where the front dot is.

The XS big dot is based on African big game rifle sights.

On the Range: Big Dot vs. 3-Dot

The guys took a pistol with a traditional 3-dot sight setup to the range and fired on targets at distances of 4, 8, 12, and 21 yards. They aligned the slide so that the left rear dot is in the middle, serving as the front sight.

The test uses the left rear dot as the front sight at 4, 8, 12, and 21 feet.

The results are striking. At 4 feet, aiming at the bullseye, the point of impact is several inches to the left. From 8 feet away, the rounds are right at the edge of the cardboard. At 12 and 21 feet, the rounds landed FEET beside of the cardboard.

Clockwise from top left: 4 feet, 8 feet, 12 feet, and 21 feet. Red circles indicate point of impact.

Now, my first thought was that muscle memory will take over and align your sights. But will it? Do you practice enough for muscle memory to overcome the stress, adrenaline, and sheer speed of a sudden violent encounter? I’m sure some folks do, but I’m willing to bet that a lot more don’t. I probably don’t. I’m not certain because I’ve never been in that moment for real, but I’d say not.

Using the wrong dot WILL make you miss. Will your muscle memory compensate?

Running and Gunning in the Dark with the XS Big Dot Sights System

The video’s second part features the guys doing a run and gun on the range at night. No night vision gear, just a light and the XS sights. Now, they don’t say which sights they’re using. They imply that one has the big dot, and one has the 3-dot, but it looks to me, from the glimpses I got, that they both use the big dot. You can decide for yourself.

The video shows how much more difficult night shooting is.

Either way, it’s an instructive look at how much more difficult shooting at night really is. We can see that knowing how and when to use your light is a big deal, even though they don’t talk about it. The importance of having the RIGHT light is also front and center. Having the wrong light contributed to the second shooter running the course a minute and 26 seconds slower than the first shooter.

Go With the Big Dot

The verdict on the XS big dot sights versus the 3-dots comes down to needing “sights that you can operate quickly and know what you’re doing. That’s why we’ve chosen the XS big dot sights because it simplifies the picture. You have a line and a big dot in the front with maximum target information.”

So, what do you think? Are big dot sights better than the traditional 3-dot system? Sound off in the comments and tell us about your choice.

Happy shooting, y’all.


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