Trijicon was founded in 1981 but would not get the name we are familiar with until 1985. The company name stems from two words, “Tritium,” the key element in the company’s innovation illumination technology, and “icon,” meaning a picture or image. The “j” was added to combine both words to form Trijicon. I learned something new in my research—also, the “iji” in the name mimics the “three-dot” design of the Bright and Tough Night Sights introduced the same year.
By 1987, Trijicon had introduced the ACOG (Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight), which was included in the U.S. Army Advanced Combat Rifle program almost immediately. Then in 1988, the Bright and Tough Night Sights were adopted by the FBI. Over the next several years, Trijicon’s partnership with the military and law enforcement agency ramped up.
By 1995, U.S. Special Operations Command had placed a 12,000-unit order, and word was spreading about Trijicon, as other units and foreign Special Forces for militaries such as the IDF were purchasing the ACOG.
With a strong footprint in the military market, Trijicon next set its sights on the hunting market and introduced the AccuPoint 3-9x40 mm dual-illuminated riflescope in 1998. The company continued to introduce new products for both the civilian and military markets with great success. The release of the Trijicon Red-Dot Sight in 2007, its first miniature reflex-style red dot sight, was in direct response to U.S. Special Forces modifying their ACOGs by mounting a small red dot on top.
In 2009, the Trijicon RMR (Ruggedized Miniature Reflex) sights were released in two versions, LED-illuminated and Tritium fiber-optic illuminated reticle, along with a unique housing for strength. The RMR was updated with an adjustable LED in 2012, additionally there is the Type 2 LED with upgraded electronics proven to perform mounted on the slide of a pistol.
The RMR was a hit. It is the Official USSOCOM handgun reflex sight and can be found in use on self-defense, law enforcement, military, target and competition firearms. What makes the RMR great for the self-defense, law enforcement and military markets are its size and ability to co-witness with iron sights. Unfortunately, there are drawbacks for competitive shooting use, as the RMR has a small window compared to other red-dot sights mounted on Carry Optics and Open division guns. Thus, Trijicon got to work and in 2019, the SRO (Specialized Reflex Optic) was released.
With legendary durability and a large field-of-view, plus a clean, crisp red dot that mounts to the already popular RMR footprint, what’s not to like? Additionally, Trijicon added a top-loading battery and both manual and automatic LED brightness modes to the new SRO. There is a reason why these are hard to find in stock, they are very popular in the fastest-growing USPSA division of Carry Optics.
The SRO (MSRP: $749, Trijicon.com) includes a large, unobstructed field-of-view that is parallax free. It sports a tool-less design for windage and elevation adjustments, making zeroing hassle-free. It is available in 1-MOA, 2.5-MOA and 5 MOA reticles with eight brightness settings that include one super bright mode and two night vision modes. The SRO also includes button “lock-out” and “lock-in” modes. The “lock-out” secures the auto-brightness setting feature that is ideal for everyday carry firearms. The “lock-in” mode secures the user-chosen brightness setting indefinitely geared to competitive shooting use. In addition, the housing is made from 7075-aluminum and is waterproof up to 10 feet.
I opted for the SRO with 2.5-MOA dot, which was mounted to my Walther Q5 Steel Frame and used in several club matches, on the range testing, as well as at a Stoeger training class. The SRO mounted easily to the Walther, and was quick to sight in on the first range trip. The window is similar in size to the C-More RTS2 that it replaced on the Walther and was easy to find. The dot movement was easy to track and never left the window. Between the matches, range trips and the training class, I burned through 2,500 rounds with zero issues.
Next, I swapped the SRO on to the CZ Shadow 2 Optics Ready model. The SRO again mounted easily to the CZ and actually was good to go on being sighted in. We ran the CZ SRO combo through several drills in two different range trips shooting a variety of ammunition, again with zero issues. The round count between both guns using the Trijicon SRO is just shy of 5,000. I had no issue with the 2.5-MOA size dot during testing. I have been running 6-MOA dots with the C-Mores and SIG Romeos; I would like to compare the 5 MOA, but it is difficult to find right now.
Slide-mounted optics on handguns are becoming the norm, but they do have their drawbacks. They take a beating on the slide, but Trijicon is known for having one of the toughest ones out there. I am happy to report that after mounting the SRO to two different firearms and shooting just under 5,000 rounds, there were no issues. If you are thinking about Carry Optics, or replacing your current red-dot sight, keep an eye out for the Trijicon SRO. You will not be disappointed.
Note: Shooting Illustrated named the Trijicon SRO the 2020 Optic of the Year—Ed.
Article from the September/October 2020 issue of USPSA’s FrontSight magazine.
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