“You come at the king, you best not miss” These wise words were uttered by Warrior Poet Omar Little, but I feel they apply to the Browe Tactical Optic. The king, in this case, being Trijicon and their famous ACOG optic. The challenger to the king is Browe-Inc and the Browe Tactical Optic. Browe has a history with Trijicon, but today we are going to stick to the review. We will talk about how it differs from the ACOG and how it’s better or worse in regards to performance.
I’ve had the Browe Tactical Optic for way longer than I anticipated due to some logistical issues, but it has given me time to put nearly 700 rounds downrange with it. On top of that, there were many range days with friends where they put some of their own ammo downrange. I finally got out to a substantial range with the gun and even lit up a few targets at 300 yards.
This particular Tactical optic is designed for the 7.62 x 39mm round and an AK pattern rifle. That being said the gun I’m using it on is clearly not an AK, but a SIG 556R. Their rifles are similar enough and in the same caliber so the BDC is consistent. The BTO is a fixed 4 power scope with a 32mm objective lens. It comes available with a red, Amber, Blue, or Green reticle, and this model is red.
The BTO is waterproof up to 42 meters, dry nitrogen purged to be fog proof, and features a 2000 hour battery life. The MSRP is $1,395.00.
In my first look, I explored a few features of the Browe Tactical Optic. At that time I didn’t have much time with the optic, but the features sounded promising. One I thought was genius was the Target Light Sensor technology.
The Browe automatically adjusts the brightness of your reticle based on the brightness of the area you are shooting in. Tritium equipped ACOGs also automatically adjust, but they adjust for the area you are standing in. The Browe Tactical Optic adjusts for the area you are aiming at. This makes the reticle much easier to use. If I’m standing in the screaming sunlight of Florida and aiming at a target that’s shaded by a tree guess what happens?
The reticle automatically dims. This makes it much easier to see my shaded target. In a scenario where I had to pop a cap in an ass, I would easily be able to see my reticle and make shot placement count.
The reticle’s automatic adjustment is near instant. If you were clearing a house and transitioning from outside to inside it best be, or even transitioning from a brightly lit room to a dim one. To try the real world applications of this technology. I started outside and moved through my house with the optic held up to my eye. The transition was flawless.
Moving from my brightly lit kitchen to a dark bedroom reinforced the awesomeness of the Browe’s ability to transition. It just does what it needs to do. If for some weird reason you don’t like it you can cycle through 10 daylight settings and 3-night vision modes.
We Put a Computer in It.
The Browe Tactical Optic has a utility port, which is odd for a scope in my opinion. However, it does allow you to do a number of things I’d have never thought of. For one, you can update and customize the firmware, which is interesting. Other than that you hook up a remote pressure pad that allows you to control the optic, its modes, and brightness levels.
Lastly, you can even import and export power. You can rig up mini red dots and lasers to run off the BTO battery. You can also power the optic through an external source. This isn’t a feature I’ve used by can see the benefits of it. It makes the optic more adaptable and simplifies battery usage for the end user.
The reticle on my optic is the Chevron reticle with hash marks out to an optimistic 700 meters. I say optimistic because I’m not taking a 762×39 out that far, it’s not a skill I have, unfortunately. The red illuminated chevron is very eye-catching, and I zeroed it according to the manual. The tip of the chevron is my 100 meter zero. The reticle is easy to see very easy to use. It really is grunt proof. The more versatile a system is the better, but at the same time, you need to make it simple to use under stress. The Browe Tactical optic is quite easy to use.
The clarity of the optic is brilliant. It’s crystal clear and remains so regardless of the external conditions. Even raindrops don’t cloud the vision thanks to the awesome lens coating. This is Florida it rains every five minutes for about five minutes so I don’t let it chase me off the range.
Clarity is excellent throughout the day, from the early morning to late evening I had a great sight picture. The sight picture is throughout the whole picture and there is no noticeable blurriness is the peripherals of the optic.
The Browe Tactical Optic is crystal clear, and would actually work very well as a hunting optic. Just because Tactical is in the name doesn’t mean you can’t fudd it up occasionally. What comes to my mind is a Ruger Mini Ranch Rifle in 7.62x39mm…. Sorry got distracted. It’s clear, and you can easily pick up movement and distinguish animals from their background.
I imagine that this would be handy for shooting bad people trying to blend into bad environments, but my testing didn’t include that opportunity.
One of the big things I see across forums and on R/guns are people interested in fixed power optics but convinced they won’t work at close ranges. This is not true. The Bindon Aiming Concept, or BAC, was derived from Trijicon’s founder Glyn Bindon. “I r grunt” so I can’t explain the science, but I can tell you how it works practically.
In close quarters combat I merely pull the rifle and optic up, making sure I keep both eyes open. One eye looks through the optic, the other looks at the target. The reticle will be superimposed over the target, and against my vision. The human eye is a complicated machine, but as long as I don’t focus with one eye over the other, this works. The reticle is superimposed over my vision, and it works almost as good as a red dot.
I say almost because to me it’s just as fast, but a little less precise. I can still place shots into the vital zone, but they don’t make neat small groups like I can with a red dot. You can easily track targets left to right, as well as up and down. Close range fighting isn’t an issue for the Browe Tactical Optic.
Long Range (Relative to the round)
By long range, I’m talking 300 yards, which about the approximate effective range of the 7.62 x 39. I did go all the way to 500 yards, but I was most concerned about performance at that 300 yard range. Keep in mind the majority of the testing was done with cheap Tula and Wolf ammo. Why else would I own a 7.62×39?
I did have some issues with the range personnel allowing cameras on the range. I tried for some time to find a place to set up and shoot a little video, and pictures but unfortunately this proved to be more difficult than I imagined.
At 300 yards I used my new favorite targets the Modern Warrior T1s setup against a cardboard backing. These man-sized targets are very modern and easy to see. I took a prone position and fired unsupported and realized I should have invested in a 20 or 10 round AK mag for this. Low prone isn’t really an option. I fired unsupported because this is a combat optic, and accuracy is so subjective between each shooter and gun. I also preferred a realistic scenario to evaluate my own skill level.
The SIG 556R is a little more accurate than your average AK, and I was getting groups between 7 to 9 inches with it. It’s no sub-moa gun, but I kept the rounds on target easy enough. The Browe Tactical Optic’s BDC is a breeze to use, and with a little yard to meters conversion, it was dead on.
With Sellier and Bellot’s brass cased ammo I got the groups down to a consistent 7 inches, with several hovering around 6.5 inches.
Going the Distance
At 500 yards I stuck to a big steel IPSC target to hear the rings. I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to hit the target. I wasn’t hitting 100%, but once I got on target, I was able to stay quite consistent. The meters to yards difference is a little more substantial here, so I had to use to 450 meters mark on the Browe Tactical Optic’s BDC. I love the 50-meter increments that make it easy to do these kinds of conversion.
500 yards is really pushing both my skills, the gun, and the ammo, but I still made hits. I fully believe that those hits are due to the fact I had the Browe Tactical optic. Without it, hits would have been luck more than anything else.
The Browe Tactical Optic
Is it an ACOG killer? Undoubtedly some will say no, and I do encourage them to try the Browe. I love the ACOG, and always will. However, do I think the Browe Tactical Optic is better? Yes, I do. It’s more modern, and an evolution in combat optics. The Browe Tactical and Combat optics are well designed, and well thought out. They offer a versatile, but simple system that’s easy to use regardless of the stress level. The streamlined layout and inherent streamlined nature of the optic, combined with its brilliant clarity, and a great reticle make the Browe Tactical Optic my new favorite RCO.