The Trijicon ACOG, is it worth it?


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Cap'n Jack Burntbeard
September 1, 2009, 03:39 AM
The ACOG seems to be the hottest toy on the market for the short to medium range rifle, but is it really worth it? Or is there a lot of hype going on here?

If you have used them, whats your honest opinion? Are they the greatest thing since since smokeless powder, are they moderately good, are they bad, or are they just a shiny tacticool money pit?

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Cap'n Jack Burntbeard
September 1, 2009, 05:03 AM
Any help would be appreciated, since I'm trying to figure out if one of these belongs on my wish list.

Shung
September 1, 2009, 05:07 AM
They are really great, Crystal clear, compact, tough, and easy to use.

I have a TA01NSN on my SDI M4, and it's really efficient. At 300m, shooting basket ball sized target can be done so easely..

http://i34.servimg.com/u/f34/11/94/71/06/m4rev210.jpg

C-grunt
September 1, 2009, 05:23 AM
If you can afford it get one. I truly believe they are THE BEST combat scope (non sniper) on the market period.

I had one on my M16 Designated Marksman Rifle for my 2005 tour to Iraq. As much hell as that rifle went through, falls, IEDs, and what not, it never lost its zero.

Recently I got accepted into my departments rifle school. I found a deal on a mini ACOG online and snatched it up. Of the 22 officers in the class, 20 of them were former/current military with a Navy SEAL, Marine sniper, Army sniper and most of the rest Marines. Several of these guys are better shooters than me, but I won the top shooter award. I won it at the timed 300 and 200 yard line competition. I was the only one with a magnified optic and while they made consistent hits, mine were better grouped on the target.

P.B.Walsh
September 1, 2009, 08:07 AM
I had one on my M16 Designated Marksman Rifle for my 2005 tour to Iraq. As much hell as that rifle went through, falls, IEDs, and what not, it never lost its zero.

I think that that says it all. :)

Double Naught Spy
September 1, 2009, 08:12 AM
ACOGs are outstanding scopes. C-Grunt's real world combat experience matches my own civilian world experience in regard to durability and zeros. I think the optics are first rate.

The only problems I can say that I have had are not actually shortcomings of the scopes themselves (I have 3). I have one with a donut reticle and I wished I would have gotten a chevron instead. The 4 MOA donut is just too big for precision longer range shooting (300-600 yards), it was all that was available at the time. It has been a great scope and I have used it on several rifles in the last 8 years.

I really like my NSN variant in red. However, if speed is your game, then the crosshairs in the daytime are no better than crosshairs of a similar powered scope as they are not illuminated in daytime. So the scope isn't built for speed in the way that the illuminated reticle scopes are.

Even though they are low powered, you need to match the power with your needs. Even 3-4x is too much for CQB work inside of 50 yards and the lowest powered ACOGs (1.5x, I believe) don't offer you much, if any, advantage over iron sights at 300 yards.

Note that these are not problems with the scopes themselves, but in matching needs to applications.

ny32182
September 1, 2009, 09:22 AM
I have a TA31RCO-A4 and a TA11F. The glass is very clear, and they are built for physical toughness/to withstand abuse, with very few moving parts. I have not beaten the crap out of mine to find out if they really hold up, but seeing as they are adopted by the military, I am confident they will hold up to what I will dish out. Also, I really like the self regulating fiber optic illumination.

My TA31 did have to go back to the factory for some loose metal shavings I saw in the housing about a year after I bought it. Trijicon turned it around fairly quickly, cleaned out the shavings, and according to the supplied report, replaced/upgraded some of the other internal components, and I was only out the shipping to send it there... pretty good CS in my opinion.

My only gripes with them are as follows:

-TA31: Very short eye relief.
-TA11: Kind of big and heavy for what it is; a fixed 3.5x scope.

If I bought a third (and I might one day) I would probably look at the compact models to see what is offered there in terms of maginification and FOV, eye relief, vs. weight.

KW
September 1, 2009, 09:27 AM
While they do cost an arm and a leg, they are fantastic optics. Once I took mine out to zero it with a buddy who had a 9x scope on his rifle. I figured the 9x would be put to good use as a spotting scope, but quickly found that I could see more through the 4x ACOG because the glass was so good.

Further, the dual illumination means that they are still useful (though not necessarily ideal) in CQB and low light situations. All with no batteries, and they fit PERFECTLY on the AR platform.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
September 1, 2009, 09:30 AM
What they said - Trijicon is all top-rate stuff!

Gordon
September 1, 2009, 10:01 AM
TA 11 on my FN FAL and loving it last 2 years. Seems ideal for the platform

WoofersInc
September 1, 2009, 03:34 PM
Every single person who has shot my AR with the ACOG has immediately commented on how easy it was to use and how clear the view was. They are expensive but well worth it.

ArmedBear
September 1, 2009, 03:42 PM
The Trijicon has some fine optics. As Ferris Bueller said, if you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up.

But why is it that people think it's great, but scoff at the idea of spending the money on a Swarovski for hunting?

CoRoMo
September 1, 2009, 03:56 PM
I don't know if I'll ever swing that kind of bread on an optic. I'd love to though. They are well worth it, but I just can't do that price.

Zak Smith
September 1, 2009, 04:58 PM
Nobody can say if it's "worth it" for you, because every person brings their own priorities to the decision. However, the TA11 ACOG is one of the best Type II optic choices for fighting carbines:

http://demigodllc.com/photo/PRM-2006.11/icon/D100_5378_img.jpg
article | Fighting Carbine Optics http://demigodllc.com/icon/extwh3.png (http://demigodllc.com/articles/fighting-carbine-optics-for-the-ar-15)


http://demigodllc.com/photo/ITRC-2004/icon/135_3507_img_icon.jpg
article | Evolution of the 3-Gun Practical Rifle http://demigodllc.com/icon/extwh3.png (http://demigodllc.com/articles/evolution-of-the-3-gun-practical-rifle)

Shadow 7D
September 1, 2009, 05:52 PM
Lets not forget that the company is great and stand not only behind their product but also our troops.

Double Naught Spy
September 1, 2009, 09:45 PM
TA11: Kind of big and heavy for what it is; a fixed 3.5x scope.

It is a bit large, but my experience with my TA11 (which has the donut reticle) is that light transmission is VERY GOOD. I find that it is very good in lower light situations, no doubt because of the size of the front optic. Of course it is absolutely great in daylight.

Zak Smith
September 1, 2009, 10:03 PM
The TA11 is at least two inches shorter than a conventional-design fixed-power 3.5x scope.

possum
September 1, 2009, 10:35 PM
i personally have 2 view points on this topic.
1) the military side of the house as i am an Infantry guy.
2) the civilian side/ shooter side, as i own my an AR and train with it alot.

personally the ACOG would not help me in the use of my personal ar and what it's intended purposes are and why i have it, and the types of shooting/ training that i use it for. i see little possibility of me ever using my ar past 25yds if ever needed for defense in a civilian role. ie home defense etc. even if i did need to hit out to 300yds i know i can do it with my ar and my eotech (which is my optic of choice for my personal ar.) for the purposes that my ar is for it is better for me to be quicker at aquiring my targets than taking shots at long range. an acog would slow me down in the realistic ranges that i would possibly use my own ar.

as far as in the military my M4 has an acog RCO as a matter of fact. they are nice. for clearing a building not so much and i honestly would rather have a doctor optic mounted on top or an eotech with a 3x magnifier with fts mount. however i can and have engaged and hit targets at 600 meters with my issued rifle and acog. if the war on terror was more in the open then the acog would be better for me, but since the majority of the work that i do and most of the recent soldiers have done is in such urban enviornments, the acog is good but has it's limitations in house to house fighting. one great thing about it is that you can look into distant windows doors, on roof tops, down alley ways, roads etc. the acog is a better defensive optic than an offensive optic, unless of course you are in a support by fire position and laying targets to waste while your other team moves in on the objective. as well with the absolute need for PID of enemy now more important than ever, it is a good tool to have for doing so before engaging.

i have ran my issued acog with nods before and it was ok. however for me the eotech and nods combo is much more effective and user friendly for the times when i run my 14's on the rail with an optic.

acogs are tough though, real tough, if they can survive on my m4 and the many many soldiers that have them on their weapons they are good to go in my book for sure.

another down fall to the acog in the military at least the way that most units use them is the fact they are not zeroed correctly. most soliders and most leaders that don't know any better zero the top of the chevron at the 25meter target, which doesn't allow you to use the optic as it was intended for proper hold over. so soliders end up having essentially a magnified red dot optic with no BDC capabilites and they have to use kentucky windage which i have seen in my experiences don't work out to well for most twice a year rifle qual guys.

possum
September 1, 2009, 10:43 PM
so all in all for my personal use they are not "worth it to my own ar.

on my work gun it is good to have, and even more so now that i am in the position where i am not the first man in the door. me realistically having to use my m4 in a house is very slim these days for multiple reasons, one the op tempo in Iraq, and two because of my position.

i believe that soliders in Afghanistan would have a different out look and opinion on the situation. i am sure that alot of them there that don't have acogs would love to have one, as there is a much higher need for them in my opinion in that theater of operations. ( all the open terrain, mountains etc.) i have not been there so i have little knowledge on the subject, however iraq is like my second home.:)

Visionz45
September 1, 2009, 10:43 PM
+1 on possums reply, my unit hasn't lost any due to mechanical or user error so far. Most marines can manage to break about anything and the RCO's have held up well.

rtn
September 1, 2009, 10:44 PM
My brother served in the 82nd Airborne in Iraq and used an ACOG on his rifle. He loved it. Especially after dropping an Iraqi from 400 meters in low light.

possum
September 1, 2009, 10:45 PM
+1 on possums reply, my unit hasn't lost any due to mechanical or user error so far. Most marines can manage to break about anything and the RCO's have held up well.
welcomee to thr. glad to have you along.

Visionz45
September 1, 2009, 10:52 PM
I'd prefer a POA/POI sight for anything w/in 100 meters. Secondly Ive yet to see an RCO lose zero and seen several in the beginning incorrectly zeroed.

Uncle Mike
September 2, 2009, 12:11 AM
Are the ACOG's any count... damn straight they are! One of the BEST optics out there.

Now...do you really NEED one...probably not...

It's all a honest type thing... hey, if you like it or it makes more of a man out of you, by all means...

That is a damn lot of cash if you really don't need it. There are many optics out there that will suffice...do the same exact thing and save you some coin.

Cap'n Jack Burntbeard
September 2, 2009, 04:16 AM
Well it seems that everyone loves them, so its definitely on my wish list, but not for anytime soon.

P.B.Walsh
September 2, 2009, 08:48 AM
Well it seems that everyone loves them, so its definitely on my wish list, but not for anytime soon.


Same here my Highroader friend, same here.....umm, mabey Uncle Sam will let me have one in a few years.....:)

H2O MAN
September 2, 2009, 09:03 AM
They are great on an AR.

Double Naught Spy
September 2, 2009, 08:08 PM
The TA11 is at least two inches shorter than a conventional-design fixed-power 3.5x scope.

Ah, but they are larger than the TA** models, which the TA01NSN seems to be the one about which so many people are familiar.

Your point is well taken. It is all a matter of your point of reference. I wasn't clear on mine which was the smaller TA series.

_CY_
September 2, 2009, 08:19 PM
my AR's job is self defense... plain sights for me. as my needs are close in.

plans are to upgrade mil spec aimpoints to some type of optic sights

Zak Smith
September 2, 2009, 08:26 PM
Ah, but they are larger than the TA** models, which the TA01NSN seems to be the one about which so many people are familiar.
By some sort of regular expression syntax, the TA11 would be a "TA**" model. Anyway, the TA01 and TA31 series are shorter and have 4x magnification, but have only 1.5 inches of eye relief. That is the tradeoff of the shorter length.

DougW
September 2, 2009, 09:15 PM
I am running a TA31F on one of my 20" AR's for 3 gun match work. Seams to be fine for me. My son has a TA01NSN on one of his L1A1 right now, but it may go back to one of his M4'gery's. (We both run ML2 Aimpoints on an M4'gery for close in stuff.)

I do like the ACOG. Helps me find the target with my slightly aged eyes. I am reduced to using all optics pretty much, except for the AR15A2, which is stock open sighted.

Double Naught Spy
September 3, 2009, 07:34 AM
By some sort of regular expression syntax, the TA11 would be a "TA**" model. Anyway, the TA01 and TA31 series are shorter and have 4x magnification, but have only 1.5 inches of eye relief. That is the tradeoff of the shorter length.

While the TA11s may be bigger and longer and have more eye relief than the TA01s, note that there are other small TA** models that have longer eye relief. Size (especially of the objective) and length aren't the only determining factors to eye relief. So is magnification.

Zak Smith
September 3, 2009, 12:07 PM
Certainly. I found some of the smaller ACOG models (the mini ACOGs) with longish eye relief to have very narrow fields of view.

Dienekes
September 4, 2009, 12:10 AM
Put a 1.5 x 24 Compact on my M4gery about 3 years ago as irons and senior citizen status don't go together well anymore. Magic. Would have loved it on my M16 in 1966...I consider the M4gery a 200 yd weapon so the 1.5 is adequate and plenty quick. If this optic would have been around in 1990 I would have kept the personal CAR-15 I had as an LEO. I can think of a lot of guns I would cheerfully sell to finance this unit.

Also have a 3x30 Compact on an M1A (Smith dedicated mount) which is good but the whole package gets heavy and bulky. They are definitely worth the $ though.

Werewolf
September 4, 2009, 12:21 PM
Until I looked thru a Trijicon ACOG I thought I knew the difference between poor, good and excellent optics.

MAN! Was I wrong. 35 years of what I thought I knew down the drain. The trijicons are the clearest, cleanest, sharpest optics I've ever seen and that includes Leupolds. If I had a spare $1000 plus to spend I'd buy one for my M-4 without hesitation.

So I'd say - YEAH! They're worth it.

delta53
September 5, 2009, 12:12 PM
I have a TA-33-8 and it is better than all the mid priced and lower priced optics I have bought over the years. I have found it is better to buy the best you can afford .Don't waste your money on 2-3 cheap optics when you could have waited and bought 1 good scope that you will be happy with for 10+ years. thats why the Marines use them.

uvausmc
September 5, 2009, 01:40 PM
been using one on my issued M4 over here in the sandbox. I like it a lot. me and my guys got a chance to stretch it out one day and were making hits on 6'x4' targets out to 900 yds (mind you it took a few rounds "walk the rounds on" but not very many). the reticle is great but too bright in the sunlight over here, which is easy to fix with some electrical tape. As great as it is I dont know if i would drop $1k on one. I have one of the new accupoint TR24 scopes at home that will be going on a AR-10 im working on. It's a great scope too, very clear optics and very robust.

datruth
September 5, 2009, 11:26 PM
I borrowed my buddies issued M4 with an acog on it, It was my first time using an acog, i was taking a CQM/SRM course and i was shocked at how easy it was to use as long as it it sighted in properly, it was almost cheating from 25-300 meters using the chevron properly. Extremely clear and having bad eyes and forced to wear glasses I was sold. Luckily, my unit got some and I got one, then when and bought my own for my ar at home. It is a really good optic after transitioning from a simple eotech, to and eotech and a 3x magnifier, to an acog, to an acog with doc optic, back to just an the acog after getting use to using it at closer distance, I love my acog a ta31F it is a great optic and thinking of adding a TA11 for my fal.

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