Reviews Trijicon RMR HD & RCR: The Next Generation of Pistol Dots [Hands-On Review] Tom Marshall August 1, 2023 3 Comments, Join the Conversation When it comes to pistol-mounted red dots, Trijicon is often credited with leading the charge for durable, duty-ready optics up to the task. Since the release of the SRO several years ago, the market has been waiting anxiously for them to release next-gen options that offer feature sets now commonplace elsewhere in the market. Things like top-load batteries, reticle options, and an enclosed-emitter variant. We’re happy to announce that those options have finally arrived, in the form of the RMR HD and RCR. The RMR HD will be very familiar to legacy RMR users. The form factor is nearly identical, including the famous “owl ear” body shape. The HD’s window is somewhat larger than the original, but smaller than the SRO. The HD does carry over the latter’s forward-set body design. Additionally, there is a reference line integrated into the top of the frame for those who are used to drawing a line with paint pen, as well as a top-load battery compartment that no longer requires removal of the optic to change. Trijicon says that said battery, still a CR2032, will power the RMR HD for three years on brightness settings 5 to 9 at 70 degrees F. Speaking of brightness settings, there are now two more brightness options including “super bright” and an additional night vision setting. You can also lock in the brightness setting to keep your dot from being inadvertently adjusted. There are two versions available: a 1 MOA dot and a 3.25 MOA dot, and both now have the option to turn on a 55 MOA segmented ring. Particularly interesting is the ability to adjust “relative brightness” meaning you can set the brightness of the dot and the ring independently of each other based on user preference. Our test sample included a quick-reference card that walks you through an extensive programming scheme. The HD uses the existing RMR mounting footprint, so any plates or slide cuts you have for older RMRs will still be good. Likewise for optic-height BUIS, if you run them. For those who prefer enclosed-emitter optics for hard use, the RCR delivers many of the same features of the RMR and RMR HD in a sealed package that offers additional protection against impact and weather. Also using a single CR2032 battery, the RCR touts a whopping six years of battery life at mid-range settings at room temperature. It too features 10 individual brightness settings that include three night vision options as well as super bright. The RCR is standardized with a 3.25 MOA dot and, perhaps most surprising, also uses the RMR footprint. The issue with making closed-emitter optics compatible with RMR footprints has always been the screws, since passing screws downward through a sealed box poses a sizeable engineering challenge. Trijicon was able to overcome this through the use of capstan screws, which feature holes through the head enabling them to be turned from the side instead of the top. While capstan screws are much more difficult to come by, and may pose additional issues if you over-torque, they do preserve the common footprint, which is critically important for those of you with milled slides. The window is similar in size to the HD, in that it’s neither the largest or smallest optic window we’ve ever seen. As closed optics go, it’s one of the better window sizes we’ve come across. It should also be noted that the RCR has the same deck height as the RMR and RMR HD, so the same commonality applies to back-up irons. Both optics utilize the same notch filter that Trijicon is known for, meaning you’ll still see the same blue tint when you look through them. But the edge distortion and fish-eye effect sometimes encountered with older RMRs is noticeably reduced on the newer models. Both the RMR HD and RCR are listed at an MSRP of $849, meaning you could see street prices down in the $600s. Trijicon says both models will be shipping in quantity during Q4 of this year. In the meantime, we will run our test samples on guns that carried and shot routinely to continue collecting data. Check the Trijicon website and your local optics dealers for continued updates. 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