Aimpoint Carbine Optic (ACO) Review (2024): Worth the Money?

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The Aimpoint Carbine Optic is a great optic for your money.

In fact:

This optic was designed to be a complete package of accuracy, toughness, and reliability at an entry level price point.

By the end of this Aimpoint Carbine ACO review, you’ll know why it’s one of the best red dot sights you can buy.

Let’s dive in!

FeaturesAimpoint Carbine Aco
BrandAimpoint
ColorSemi-matte black
Magnification Range1x fixed magnification
Reticle Type2 MOA red dot
Reticle IlluminationYes
Weight6.7 oz
Length4.8 inches
Objective Lens Diameter38mm

Here’s my Aimpoint Carbine ACO Review

Aimpoint is known to manufacture the best red dot sights on the market today.

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO is no exception.

This red dot reflex sight and the Aimpoint Pro were designed specifically for use on modern sporting rifles and promise to deliver all the amazing features Aimpoint offers with its products.

So, is it true?

Can you really walk away with legendary Aimpoint quality for only $400?

Keep reading to find out!

Glass Clarity & Reticle

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic’s glass is clear and crisp.

AIMPOINT ACO LENS

The front lens has an orange, anti-reflective tint while the rear lens has a very light blue hue.

AIMPOINT ACO LENS (1)

Don’t worry: neither tint will be a distraction while you shoot.

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO comes with a 2 MOA dot, perfect for precision shooting or longer ranges.

AIMPOINT ACO GLASS

However, if you prefer quicker target acquisition, I recommend looking at my Vortex Venom vs Viper review. That red dot reflex sight works best for close and fast-moving targets.

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO comes with 10 brightness settings: 1 off and 9 daylight, one of which is extra intense for use in bright sunlight environments.

I was able to quickly adjust the illumination of my red dot reflex sight to match the amount of light in my shooting background.

One setback:

This red dot reflex sight isn’t night vision compatible— unlike the Sig Romeo 5 RDS. But it performs well enough during lowlight operations.

The Aimpoint ACO red dot reflex sight has a battery life of 10,000 hours. Its single DL1/3N battery is advertised to be usable for up to a full year.

AIMPOINT ACO BATTERY

You won’t fumble around or lose precious time trying to turn the Aimpoint ACO on during an emergency situation.

AIMPOINT ACO BATTERY COMPARTMENT

As a matter of fact:

I’ve constant-on use for the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO for the past year and haven’t swapped batteries yet. So far so good.

AIMPOINT ACO BATTERY COMPARTMENT (1)

On that note, if you want longer battery life on a red dot reflex sight, check out my Vortex Sparc 2 vs. Strikefire 2 review.

I will note that some shooters find the red dot to be fuzzy or jagged in shape. This is common for tired eyes or shooters with astigmatism.

AIMPOINT ACO MOUNTED

If you’re experiencing this, I recommend looking at holographic sights— like the Holosun HS403B.

Speaking of the eyes…

Eye Relief & Eye Box

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO has unlimited eye relief.

AIMPOINT ACO GLASS

The Aimpoint ACO red dot reflex sight has a wide field of view. I can see everything clearly through the optic itself.

AIMPOINT ACO MOUNTED

I was able to zero the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO within the first twenty shots at 50 yards. 500 rounds later, it held zero without issues.

AIMPOINT ACO OVERVIEW (1)

On that note:

If you’re not sure how to sight in a red dot sight on your AR, check out this tutorial!

Durability

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO boasts unmatched quality and ruggedness.

AIMPOINT ACO MOUNTING RING

Built out of anodized aluminum housing, the Aimpoint Carbine Optic can withstand the harshest conditions. It’s submersible up to 15 feet and is completely shockproof.

AIMPOINT ACO OVERVIEW

At 2.2 inches tall and 4.8 inches long, the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO is compact.

AIMPOINT ACO MOUNTED

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic weighs about 10 ounces with the mount, making it slightly heavier than other red dot reflex sight options (like the Bushnell TRS-25).

I’ve constantly mounted and unmounted the Aimpoint Carbine Optic. Trust me: it doesn’t get easily damaged.

AIMPOINT ACO BATTERY COMPARTMENT

Elevation & Windage Knobs

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO’s elevation and windage knobs are sturdy and reliable.

AIMPOINT ACO WINDAGE TURRET (1)

The capped turrets feature ½ MOA clicks for adjustments. They’re fairly easy to tighten or loosen with just my fingers, or with gloves on.

AIMPOINT ACO WINDAGE TURRET

Also, the adjuster caps are held on by rubber straps, so you don’t need to worry about losing them.

AIMPOINT ACO TURRET CAPS

Parallax & Magnification

Like any red dot sights, the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO sports 1x magnification.

AIMPOINT ACO OVERVIEW (1)

I’ve been comfortably shooting with both eyes open, which allows me to maintain awareness of my surroundings and co-witness with the iron sights.

AIMPOINT ACO OVERVIEW (2)

By the way:

I recommend using the Aimpoint 3X Magnifier with the Aimpoint Carbine Optic if you want to take further shots at the range or when hunting.

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Also, the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO comes parallax-free and requires no centering.

AIMPOINT ACO LENS (1)

Mounting & Rings

Installing the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO was a breeze.

AIMPOINT ACO MOUNTED

The Aimpoint ACO comes with a fixed mount designed to work on any MIL-STD-1913 Picatinny rail.

AIMPOINT ACO MOUNTED (1)

Although it’s not height-adjustable, the Aimpoint Carbine Optic fixed height mount provides absolute co-witness with standard AR-15 iron sights.

AIMPOINT ACO MOUNTING SCREW

You can also use any 30mm fixed height mount, so the choice of mounts is massive.

AIMPOINT ACO MOUNTING RING

On the other hand:

The package doesn’t include lens covers. If you don’t have any, get the Aimpoint Lens Flip-up Front Cover

Aimpoint Lens Cover Flip-up Front - 12223
182 Reviews
Aimpoint Lens Cover Flip-up Front - 12223
  • Fits Aimpoint Comp, PRO, ACO and 9000 red dot sights
  • Spring-loaded cover for quick and easy openingv
  • Watertight to seal out moisture and dust

and the Rear Cover.

Aimpoint Lens Cover Flip-up Rear - 12224
183 Reviews
Aimpoint Lens Cover Flip-up Rear - 12224
  • Clear lens cover allows fast aiming without opening the cover
  • Fits Aimpoint Comp, PRO, ACO, and 9000 red dot sights
  • Spring-loaded cover for quick and easy opening

These are great for protecting the lens from dirt, scratches, and fingerprints.

AIMPOINT ACO BATTERY COMPARTMENT (1)

At this price point, some shooters prefer spending $50 more for the Aimpoint Pro since you get a better mount and covers included with the great optic.

AIMPOINT ACO OVERVIEW

But consider this:

The Carbine Optic lens is actually set back far enough where if you throw it— or if it gets bumped around— it won’t damage the glass easily.

AIMPOINT ACO LENS

That’s why I say it’s not a dealbreaker without the included accessories.

AIMPOINT ACO FINISH

Is the Aimpoint Carbine Red Dot Sight for you?

If you’re a modern sporting rifle owner looking for a great-quality optic that’s wrapped in a friendly price tag, get the Aimpoint Carbine ACO.

Aimpoint ACO Red Dot Reflex Sight 2 MOA with Mount - 200174
79 Reviews
Aimpoint ACO Red Dot Reflex Sight 2 MOA with Mount - 200174
  • Aimpoint quality and performance at an entry-level price.
  • 2 MOA dot with 9 low light and daylight brightness settings.
  • Includes mount configured for absolute co-witness with standard height sights.

Here’s a recap of its features:

  • 2 MOA red dot
  • Unlimited eye relief to co-witness with iron sights
  • Distortion-free lenses
  • Exceptional accuracy
  • Parallax-free operation
  • 10,000-hour battery life
  • Quick installation and removal

Plus:

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO is covered by a 10-year warranty when used for personal use and two years if used professionally.

AIMPOINT ACO OVERVIEW

So, if it ever breaks, Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO will repair or replace it for free.

AIMPOINT ACO BATTERY COMPARTMENT

The adage “buy once, cry once” remains true. Without a doubt, the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO is worth every penny and the Aimpoint Pro red dot is a great optic upgrade.

AIMPOINT ACO OVERVIEW (1)

If you’re looking for more affordable red dot reflex sight options, read my best Vortex red dot sights review!

Now It’s Your Turn

I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO.

Now I want to turn it over to you:

What do you think about the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO? Or perhaps you already bought the red dot reflex sight for your modern sporting rifles and would like to share your thoughts.

Either way, let me know by leaving a quick comment down below.

FAQ:

Is the Aimpoint Carbine ACO waterproof?

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO is completely waterproof and can be submerged into depths up to 15 feet.

What is the battery life on the Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO?

The Aimpoint Carbine Optic ACO has an estimated battery life of 10,000 hours on brightness setting 7 out of 10 (at room temperature). This is roughly a little over a year of continuous use. That number can change depending on the brightness setting, and whether you turn it off or keep it on constantly.

1 thought on “Aimpoint Carbine Optic (ACO) Review (2024): Worth the Money?”

  1. The Holosun 403B is not a holographic sight, it also uses a LED emitter just like any other red dot. The only 2 true holographic sights in the world are made by Vortex with their UH-1 and Eotech.

    Reply

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