Trijicon has a long history of packing paradigm-shifting amounts of performance and capabilities into rugged optical sights. While traditional iron sights will not be phased out of use soon, their current “secondary status” on practically all tactical long guns can be traced to the effects of Trijicon’s influence on the shooting community.

The company’s history dates back to 1981, when founder Glyn Bindon introduced the Armson OEG tritium-illuminated red-dot optic for rifles and shotguns to the U.S. Building on this, in 1985 the new Trijicon company released the Spectrum Riflescope (the first tritium-reticle riflescope) and the first tritium-illuminated pistol sights with its “Bright & Tough” night sights. This set the stage for a new era in firearms sighting systems.

Zeroing In

It was with the introduction of the 4x32mm Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight (ACOG) in 1987 that the era of optical sights on tactical firearms came into its own. Included in the U.S. Army Advanced Combat Rifle program, the ACOG helped to legitimize optics for military usage. With the adoption of Trijicon pistol night sights by the FBI the following year, there was no looking back for Trijicon and the era of enhanced sighting systems. ACOGs in one form or another have served with distinction in U.S. military campaigns from Panama to Afghanistan, and the company’s pistol sights are seen on handguns in use with law enforcement and tactical units around the world.

While the ACOGs were extremely popular and proved to be rugged and durable, Trijicon recognized a need for a more compact optical sight for firearms that still maintained the company’s reputation for rugged reliability. Its solution? Products like compact ACOG variants as well as the compact Trijicon Red Dot (TRD), and later the extremely popular line of Ruggedized Miniature Reflex (RMR) sights. Products like the RMR combined with the range of ACOGs (and numerous other riflescopes as well as the variable-power VCOG) meant that Trijicon could offer operators just about any product type needed to get on target for their missions.

But there was still a gap in the line between the ACOGs and the other full-sized optics and the ultra-compact RMRs. Enter the new Miniature Rifle Optic (MRO), Trijicon’s most recent addition to its impressive line of products.

Sizing Down

Intended for use on long guns such as rifles, carbines and shotguns, the MRO is a 1x25mm optic powered by a single CR2032 lithium battery. The unit measures in at a scant 2.6 inches in overall length, 1.7 inches in width and 2 inches in height (the latter without a mount). It weighs only 4.1 ounces (also not counting a mount), and the housing of the optic is made from strong yet lightweight 7075-T6 forged aluminum, the same material used for high-quality AR receivers. The unit is fully sealed and waterproof.

The reticle system of the MRO features a simple-to-use adjustable red dot with a 2-MOA diameter. The result is a light and compact optic that excels at both-eyes-open shooting with extremely fast target acquisitions.

The LED dot features eight brightness settings that can be adjusted through the use of the large ambidextrous dial located on the top of the optic’s body. The battery is housed inside of the dial itself. Adjustments of 0.5 MOA per click can be easily made by the flush-mounted elevation- and windage-adjustment dials located directly behind the primary adjustment dial and on the right rear side, respectively. The adjustment range offers 70 MOA of total travel.

The MRO features eight brightness settings, with an “off” position in the middle. The six numbered settings are visible “day” settings, and two night vision modes (“n” and “N”) offer further flexibility. For those worried about battery life, the battery-powered dot is designed to run for five years of continuous use on a single battery on the third “day” setting mode.

What all this means is that the MRO delivers a lot of performance in a very small package, but is still “duty-ready” enough for frontline use on a tactical long gun. The 25mm-diameter lens provides a wide viewing area for fast target acquisitions, and the multi-coated lenses provide excellent clarity. In addition, the sight’s 1X power gives users infinite eye relief and a parallax-free image. As noted earlier, the construction of the MRO ensures maximum durability. The unit is fully sealed and waterproof to 30 meters, and is dry-nitrogen filled to prevent fogging during its use.

There are three primary options for mounting the MRO to your weapon. One of these is a low-mount adapter that keeps the MRO as low to the bore axis as possible. The mount weighs in at just under an ounce. When the MRO is mounted on this system, the distance from the mounting rail of the weapon to the optical axis is 0.985 inches. A second option is the one-third co-witness mount adapter. The mount weighs in at 1.68 ounces and results in the optical axis of the MRO being 1.538 inches above the mounting rail. The third option is a full co-witness mount adapter. This mounting system weighs 1.78 ounces and locates the optical axis of the MRO unit at 1.663 inches above the mounting rail.

Hands On

I tried out the MRO on several long guns I had on hand, ranging from AR carbines to tactical shotguns. Installation was simple, although I did find the retaining clips for the battery to be a bit fragile. The optic added no discernible weight to the firearms I tried it out on, yet it gave me a fully functional reflex red dot with a wide field of view. I tried it out on the range against some steel plates and found that I could pick them off quickly and easily with the MRO. For those who want a powerful optic that delivers Trijicon’s tradition of performance, the new MRO should definitely fit the bill.

For more information, visit or call 800-338-0563.


  • Magnification: 1X
  • Objective Lens: 25mm
  • Weight: 4.1 ounces
  • Length: 2.6 inches
  • Width: 1.7 inches
  • Height: 2 inches
  • Power: 1 CR2032
  • Settings: 8 modes

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