Shooting With Astigmatism [Tips and Real Solutions]

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Most people have astigmatism even if they have 20/20 vision that makes shooting with astigmatism challenging.

No one has perfectly round eyeball curvature that can cause blurred distance and near vision.

Shooters with astigmatism for the most part will experience:

  • Blurry red dot reticle
  • Blurry sight picture without vision correction
  • Hard time identify targets down range even when using a good weapon light

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Tips For Shooters With Low - Mild Bad Vision

Use A 6 MOA or Bigger Dot

A bigger dot size appears much rounder to the shooter to see compared to a small 1 MOA dot in outdoor settings. It's very easy for the emitter starburst to suddenly cover up the small 1 MOA dot, then you don't get the benefit of using a small dot for precise aim.

They are much more visible and crisp under direct sunlight when the brightness is dialed up, and the red dot emitter starburst is washed away by the ambient light source.

8 MOA indoor burris fastfire 3

For indoor use, the user has to dial down the brightness so the emitter starburst and lens glare don't fill up the whole glass. Using a red dot sight in low light setting with poor vision is a real challenge.

To be honest, if a large dot size still looks blurry to you even if you have to squint your eyes, then it's better to do a vision check and correct your vision first.

Use A Magnifier Scope With Red Dot

holosun hm3x magnifier with eotech exps3 tucked away

Features Holosun 3X

If a red dot is blurry, then the optic zero is probably slightly off whether you're using a 1 MOA, 2 MOA, or 3 MOA dot.

What's your zero confidence when the dot looks like this to achieve sub moa accuracy?

red dot reticle brightness dusk

Sub MOA -  POI within the confines of 1 MOA in multiple groupings

A simple solution is to aim a red dot with the assist of a magnifier scope. It will zoom in the sight picture to get a finer aim, and the shooter can adjust the diopter ring to focus the reticle even if you have astigmatism.

The key here is to use the diopter to focus your vision. Anyone who uses a magnifier will tell you how great they are to see the red dot clearly while also extending the range of their rifles.

Use A Prism Optic Instead Of Red Dot

zeroing mk18 elcan specterdr

Prism optic is actually the better alternative for red dot sight and holographic sights. The reason is that the reticle is glass etched inside the optic instead of seeing a projection of the reticle.

Trijicon ACOG, Vortex Spitfire, Elcan SpecterDR, Primary SLx Prism 1X are great options for shooters with astigmatism under daylight use.

They are basically rifle scope in a compact size with fixed magnification. Mostly 1X, 3X, 5X

vortex spitfire ar indoor eyebox range

For the most part, the reticle will appear much crisper, and the reticle subtension is much more visible for range estimation. However, at the end of the day, the reticle still looks crisper for users with corrected vision.

Ultimate Solution

Undiagnosed eye related problems will affect dot clarity regardless dot sizes, color, shape or how much you've spent on the optic. 

Get your eyes checked will help you a lot if you haven't already

Schedule an eye doctor near you here

Vision Correction

At the end of the day, we can try different products to find solutions for shooters with astigmatism, but the real solution is to go through an eye exam and get your eyes corrected either through glasses, contacts, or LASIK.

Astigmatism_Dial_Test

Try this FREE online vision test here on our site

astigmatism eyes looking at night

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The benefit of vision correction not only helps you see a better sight picture when shooting during the day and night when using night vision goggles, better competition performance but also a new life experience simply being able to see things clearly in your day-to-day life.

Find a local eye doctor near you here.