The AR-15/M16 M4 rifle defines the contemporary firearm. The thin wispy 20″ barrel and triangular hand guards of the original models are long gone, replaced by shorter modular rifles capable of a wide range of applications. The old Chief Warrant Officer who ran the range at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center (MCAGCC) at Twentynine Palms, California, used to say, “it’s all sights and triggers”. The rifle needs a decent sight and trigger to hit the target. If he is looking for an improvement over iron sights, today’s AR-15/M16 M4 shooter has plenty of options to chose from.
Iron sights are fantastic, rugged and, almost always work (I’ve seen them break). Red dot or reflex sight systems offer a single focal plane and increased speed without magnification for close-in shooting. Magnified optics, either fixed and ruggedized like the ubiquitous Trijicon ACOG, or refined and variable like the Nightforce F1; offer increased target identification and a refined sight picture- often at the expense of a narrow field of view or durability. What if you could have one sight that pretty much does it all?
The Elcan SpecterDR 1-4x is a unique sight that offers shooters the option of either a 1X or 4X magnification, ballistic reticle, 1.5 or 6 MOA red dot, or illuminated reticle all in a durable package designed for field use.
A quick note for ACOG users, the SpecterDR has a 2.75″ eye relief (ACOG RCO is 1.5″), so it will sit further forward on the rifle.
Elcan SpecterDR 1-4x from the manufacturer:
Magnification 1x unity 4x telescope
Length 153mm (6″)
Width 76mm (3″)
Height 76mm (3″)
Weight 640g (1.41lbs)
Illumination Source Battery powered LED (650nm)
Illumination Settings 5 intensity levels
Reticle 5.56, 7.62 STD
Eye Relief 70 mm (2 ¾ “)
Field of View 24° 6
Axis Height 39mm (1.53″)
Exit Pupil 8 mm (0.275”)
Zeroing Range ±60 MOA
Movement per Click ½ MOA
Mount Capability MILSTD1913
Mount Attach Dual Levers
Rain Sights Yes, Modular
Aiming Point 6 MOA dot @ 1X 1.5 MOA dot @4X
Operating Temp 40 to +65°C (40 to 140°F)
Storage Temp 40 to +85°C (40 to 180°F)
66ft for 2 hours min
Battery / Life DL 1/3 N / Min 300 hrs @ max brightness
Finish Anodized with chemically resistant rubber casing
The SpecterDR comes equipped with factory quick release levers.
The elevation adjustment is external as well. Note the gray locking tab above the elevation wheel (above). The tab locks the elevation setting in place.
I shot the SpecterDR extensively from 7-200 yards. Conditions ranged from daylight, to low-light,white light, and with a PVS-22, in total darkness.
Shooting the SpecterDR was an absolute pleasure. Changing from 1-4X was simple and the option of either running a dot or illuminated reticle allowed the sight to be suited to any situation.
While it is bigger and heavier than some other sights on the market, I feel its versatility makes the added bulk worth it.
Four other seasoned shooters shot it and they were all equally impressed. Engaging targets at night with the sight set on 4X and the PVS-22 running was a crowd favorite. Quite possibly the most fun you can have with a rifle.