First Look: Leupold VX-Freedom Red Dot Sight

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posted on January 19, 2019
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Leupold launched its VX-Freedom series in 2018 in an effort to offer U.S.-designed and built optics to American hunters and shooters at prices they could afford, all while preserving the company's reputation for quality and repeatability. Joining this affordable lineup of optics in 2019 is the Leupold VX-Freedom Red Dot Sight, built to offer a durable, dependable, USA-made RDS that's priced right for budget-minded shooters.

“Consumers have been asking for an American-made, value-priced red dot for as long as we’ve been in the marketplace,” said Tim Lesser, Vice President of Product Development for Leupold & Stevens, Inc. “The Freedom RDS delivers on that task and more, bringing with it innovative features like the custom BDC elevation turret, allowing end-users to easily dial up for longer shots.”

Constructed as a tube-style red-dot sight, the Leupold RDS ships with an included Picatinny rail mount that's sized right for today's modern sporting rifle. The 34 mm tube can also be removed from the MSR mount and placed in any standard 34 mm scope rings. Each optic in the new lineup is built with a 1-MOA dot reticle powered by the company's Motion Sensor Technology. To extend battery life, the RDS automatically switches to a standby mode after five minutes of inactivity. As soon as the optic is moved again, the internal sensor illuminates the reticle. For longer periods of inactivity, the sight is equipped with a manual shut-off mode. The RDS is powered by a single CR2032 battery, which has a life of 1,000 hours on the medium setting.

Inside the Leupold RDS, consumers will find scratch-resistant lenses coated with the company's Twilight Red Dot System, designed to provide consistent colors and clarity throughout a range of lighting conditions. With a sealed tube that prevents fogging and moisture penetration, the RDS offers 80 MOA of adjustment range for both elevation and windage. Each RDS measures just under 5.5 inches in overall length and weighs less than 7 ounces. According to Leupold Produce Line Manager John Snodgrass, the lightweight design aids in the optic's ability to handle rugged conditions.

“The RDS features lightweight construction that disperses recoil energy and creates unrivaled durability,” Snodgrass said. “It’s been tested and verified on our Punisher, and it absolutely lives up to Leupold’s legendary standards for ruggedness. It won’t fail you, at the range or in the field.”

Two models of the Leupold RDS are available, one equipped with a capped elevation turret with 1/4 MOA adjustments and the other with an exposed BDC turret designed for use with 55-grain .223 Rem. ammunition. The BDC turret offers easy adjustments for target engagements out to 500 yards. Retail pricing on the MOA model will be under $300, while the BDC red dot will retail under $400.

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