Hey! Hi! Remember me? Yes, it’s been a while, but I am back. As you can tell from my lack of stories from the last year, 2021 did not provide the hunting opportunities offered by its predecessor. However, it allowed me to reevaluate some of my choices on weapons and accessories. Today we will walk through one of my most significant changes, moving from a Low Powered Variable Optic to a Red Dot Sight with a magnifier married to a .223 Wylde Primary Weapons Systems pistol. This is my first outing with and review of the Meprolight RDS Pro V2.
When the optic arrived, we were in the middle of getting ready for Christmas, packing the house up for a move, and preparing for a job change. With everything going on, getting to Texas Gun Experience to zero in was not happening. Much to my dismay, I would have to wait to get the Mepro RDS Pro V2 dialed in at the farm, but here is what I noticed about the optic out of the box.
In my opinion, it looks similar to an Eotech HWS. The RDS Pro V2 is 4.09 inches. It is noticeably shorter than an Eotech 512 (5.6 inches) but longer than the XSP3 (3.8 inches). Size Matters! Especially when we are discussing rail space. I was honestly concerned that the optic and magnifier would not fit onto the upper, but surprisingly they both fit. If I could change one thing about the Mepro RDS Pro V2, I would give it a smaller footprint.
Another positive of making the switch from my Vortex Viper PST 1-6 Gen II to the Mepro RDS Pro V2 and MX3T was a 9-ounce reduction in weight. That might not seem like a lot, but that’s huge when you carry through field after field all night.
I jokingly told a friend that Meprolight should rename the optic “Red Dot for Dummies,” and here is why. This is one of the easiest optics to operate. The nob or wheel on the left-hand side of the optic controls everything. Well, almost everything. The nob/wheel is how you turn on the optic and select your brightness settings (0-Off, 1-High, 2-Medium, 3-Low, 4-Night Vision), but there is a button on the side of the wheel that cycles through 4 brightness levels for each setting. Most dot sights have adjustable levels, of course. But I really appreciated that the Meprolight RDS Pro V2 lets the operator see the settings while looking at the target downrange.
While there are many good red dot options on the market, I chose the Mepro RDS Pro V2 and their MX3T magnifier. Here are three of the features that helped make this an easy decision for me:
- Thousands of hours of battery life from a readily available AA battery
- Green Bullseye reticle (also comes in a red bullseye and red 2 MOA)
- Originally built and deployed for military use rather than a range toy conveniently brought to market
I was eager to get to the farm to sight in because there were recent hog sightings during the day. We left the house later than anticipated, pushing my zeroing to the following day. After grabbing the keys to one of the farm trucks, it was off to the Porcupine Egg Field. If you’ve read my other stories, you know this a legendary field to us.
After setting up the tripod a couple of yards west of the truck, I paced off the 50 yards with a cardboard box in tow. It was later in the day than I would have preferred and with the sun setting I didn’t have much time.
Doh! My first shot was completely off target. Recognizing that the daylight would soon expire, I moved the tripod up about 15 yards. The 2nd shot was on paper! Before returning to the tripod, I grabbed my multitool and tweaked the RDS Pro V2 windage and elevation adjusters. Each audible and tactile click got me 0.5 MOA closer to zeroed. My third shot was right on target, and I moved back to the tripod.
At this point, the wind picked up speed. My next couple of shots were all over the place. It wasn’t the gun, RDS Pro V2, or ammo’s fault. I had a tough time staying steady with the wind blowing so hard. After about ten more shots, the RDS Pro V2 was zeroed.
I grabbed the MX3T with my right hand and pulled it back towards me while simultaneously gently pushing it to the left. It firmly snapped in place, letting me know it was ready. The green bullseye looked magnificent under the 3x magnification. The picture was crisp and became finer as I adjusted the focus ring on the back of the magnifier.
Many people tend to run red dot sights too brightly, making it hard to focus on the target. As sky grew darker by the minute, the multiple brightness settings available proved critical. After pulling the trigger, I walked towards the cardboard box with my flashlight and confirmed the last shot. The magnifier seemed like a pretty great option, and it was. The combination of the Meprolight RDS Pro V2 red dot sight plus the magnifier essentially gave me the equivalent of two optics. A 1x and a 3x. You could imagine that as similar to having both a traditional red dot sight and a 3x ACOG, but on demand. And, you only need to zero the red dot. Unfortunately, hunting would have to wait another day.
The next day, I snuck away from the family with a little bit of daylight left. Driving down the county roads, I just knew there would be some hogs wanting to participate in my hunt. But after going to every huntable field, I saw nothing. The hogs would surely be out at night, but that does not help me in this scenario. With the sun no longer visible, it was time to think outside the box. I returned to the house, discouraged yet excited about how I could make this work.
After a great family dinner and help putting the kids to bed, it was time to put my idea to the test. I drove around the familiar county roads looking for the right situation. There were plenty of hogs out, and many of them met their demise through my usual thermal optics tactics. You didn’t think I only brought just one gun to the farm, did you?
After several fields, the perfect scenario emerged. A small sounder of 15-20 pigs feeding about 250 yards from west of the road. I quietly pulled the truck into the grass on the shoulder and parked it. As I exited the vehicle, I grabbed my PWS pistol, tripod and pulled the Pulsar Trail 2 XP50 off my rifle.
Somehow, I managed to climb the noisiest gate in the county without spooking the sounder. Using the Pulsar for handheld spotting, I watched a handful of hogs cross the fence line onto our property. There was not a lot of wind to cover any noise I made as I crept towards the hogs. Most of the hogs were still on the other side of the fence, but my eyes locked on three decent-sized pigs about 50 yards from me.
Out of nowhere, a small gust of wind out of the east blew my scent towards the three pigs. Within a couple of seconds, they escaped to the neighboring property. It was frustrating, and only a small pig remained in our field. I am not sure if it was asleep or taking a break, but it laid down, unaffected by my presence.
After ranging the pig at 30 yards with the Pulsar, it was time to test my idea!
I carefully set the Pulsar on the ground and quietly set up the tripod. Getting the optic to the correct setting in the dark was easy since the knob is accessible and simple to manipulate. I turned on my weapon light, my PWS pistol pointed towards the sky, hoping the spill of light would not give away my position.
Smoothly, I lowered my weapon down from the night sky until the green bullseye was on the now illuminated yet unsuspecting pig. As the shot rang out through the Texas air, I expected the other pigs to run away from me, and they did for the most part. However, two pigs ran straight towards me. My second shot in this field just missed, and one of the pigs was closing in on me.
The third and final shot dropped the onrushing pig while the other one diverted away from me. The second dead pig was 11 yards from where I stood. That will give you a rush! The Meprolight RDS Pro V2 combined with the white light made my close quarters take down easier compared to using a magnified thermal optic.
Overall, I was happy with my first hunt with this optic. The hunt didn’t shape up the way I planned, but that’s life sometimes. On the other hand, the Meprolight RDS Pro V2 was great to use. Obviously, my Israeli optic was not on patrol on the Syrian border nor on a raid for a High Value Target in the Middle East, like it was originally intended. I am certain it was not made for CQHB (Close Quarters Hog Battle), but that’s SHWAT™ for you. Special Hunting, Weapons, and yes, special Tactics. The Meprolight RDS Pro V2 opened up new options for my hog hunting tactics. Can’t wait for round two!