Gear Review: STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

Travis Pike for TTAG

STNGR is a company I wish more gun owners knew about, and hopefully, this article brings them a little attention. STNGR started primarily as a handguard company producing some very good AR-15 rail systems. They sell direct to consumers and have an awesome setup for attaching your rail system.

We aren’t talking rails today, though, as STNGR has extended their brand and moved into red dot sights. The STNGR Axiom is a soon-to-be-released red dot sight that’s built on a back-to the-basics philosophy.

The Axiom is a compact red dot sight aimed at long guns. The Axiom is made from 6061-T6 aluminum and designed to be robust. It complies with IPX7 standards for waterproofing and, according to STNGR, is built for abuse. The shockproof test was conducted by giving it 600 Gs 1000 times.

The Axiom has a two MOA reticle and 11 brightness settings. Two settings are night-vision compatible and the battery life is rated at 50,000 hours. The Axiom comes with two mounts, a QD lower 1/3rd co-witness option and a low mount.

STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

Very Small and very Compact (Travis Pike for TTAG)

Swapping mounts is easy and I mounted the SNTGR to my KelTec SUB2000 and its MCARBO optic mount. The Axiom mounts perfectly for co-witnessing with the SUB2000’s iron sights. The brightness control is a simple ring with settings from 0 to 11 for quick and easy brightness adjustments. The turret caps are notched for making adjustments, which are appreciated.

The Axiom…Same Old, Same Old?

You may be reading this thinking, well, that sounds like every other compact red dot on the market. And you’re right…the Axiom doesn’t try to be revolutionary. It aims to be a good optic at a good price.

The Axiom’s MSRP of right around $115 puts it just $34 more than the unreliable Pinty optic I reviewed last month. Compared to that optic, the Axiom is smaller, has interchangeable mounts, and comes with a lifetime warranty.

STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

The 2 MOA dot is crisp and clean (Travis Pike for TTAG)

I’m torn as to whether I have a slight astigmatism or not. Some dots appear to me to be quite blurry, but others are crisp and sharp. The Axiom presents a very crisp 2 MOA red dot that doesn’t seem to star out unless I dial up a really high brightness setting in a dim environment.

Looking through the optic reveals a slightly bluish tint. It’s not annoyingly blue, but it’s noticeable. The bluish tint is common on red dots and tends to make the dot appear brighter at lower settings. This improves battery life by allowing you to use the optic at lower settings.

At the Range

The SUB2000 is a fun gun, and I had just gotten the MCARBO scope mount when the Axiom was dropped at my door. With the included low mount, these two seemed to be a match made in heaven.

STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

The slotted cap makes for easy adjustments (Travis Pike for TTAG)

After swapping mounts, I hit the range for a quick zero confirmation. Since the optic co-witnesses, I knew I could just align it to my irons and be basically there. A quick confirmation proved that I was on target and ready to rock and roll. I used the caps to adjust the dot, and the little slots are quite convenient.

The SUB2000 is a blowback-operated pistol caliber carbine and has a fair amount of recoil for a 9mm carbine, so it seemed like a fair platform to test the Axiom. I ran drills utilizing several hundred rounds of 9mm throughout the morning into the afternoon using the Axiom.

I adjusted the setting as needed, but even at the brightest part of the day, I didn’t need to go above seven to see the dot. The brightness adjustment dial provides tactile feedback and little resistance to change its setting. I’ve used dots like the TRS 25, which seems to want to test hand strength in order to change brightness settings. The Axiom doesn’t test you that way.

STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

The Axiom turned out to work perfectly with the SUB 2000 (Travis Pike for TTAG)

In the brighter outdoors setting, the blue tint is hardly noticeable. The dot was nice and crisp, and the small size made it easy to see my target at various ranges. At 100 yards, a 9mm PCC is stretched, but the 2 MOA dot is still small enough to allow you to easily see your target.

STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

The low mount pictured, the optic comes with a high mount as well (Travis Pike for TTAG)

At closer ranges, the dot is still easy to see and use for rapid-fire CQB style shooting. Mind you, the SUB 2K offers a third point of contact, so the dot tends to naturally be placed where I’m looking when I shoulder the gun. On a handgun, the 2 MOA dot might be a bit small for rapid engagements.

POWER!

The Axiom’s dot never flickered or fluttered throughout my testing, and after several hundred rounds, the Axiom kept on keeping on. To give it a little recoil, I thought, let’s toss it on an AR-10 pistol and see how it holds up.

These days, 7.62×51 isn’t cheap, but right now, the price difference between 5.56 and 7.62 isn’t that much, so I went full hog. I loaded a 20-round PMAG with some 168 grain Atlanta arms ammo and proceeded to convert ammo into noise. An AR-10 pistol with a 10-inch barrel isn’t a pleasant shooter, but boy oh boy, it’s a fun one. Regardless of the recoil and concussion, the STNGR Axiom didn’t fail.

STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

Compact dot keeps things nice and light (Travis Pike for TTAG)

It never fluttered or flickered or shut itself off. It absorbed the little bit of abuse I could put it through without complaint. Back to the SUB 2K, the STNGR Axiom went and where it lives and serves to this day. The little Axiom is a rock-solid budget red dot that excels in the basics of being an optic.

Specifications: STNGR Axiom Red Dot Sight

Objective Lens: 20 mm
Length: 2.5 inches
Width: 1.7 inches
Height: 2 inches
Weight: 4.6 Ounces
Waterproof Rating: IPX7
Battery Life: 50K Hours
MSRP: 114.99

Ergonomics  * * * * *
The optic is small, light, and plenty compact. The brightness adjustment dial provides tactile feedback and is easy to rotate. The STGNR Axiom isn’t a fancy optic, but it’s a handy one.

Reliability * * * * *
The Axiom is the little budget optic that could. I have had no reliability issues through thousands of rounds, and it seems to absorb recoil without complaint. It’s waterproof — you can dunk it for a half hour — and feels well-made despite the low price tag.

Ease of Use * * * * *
The Axiom was easy to zero, easy to swap mounts, and easy to mount and dismount. Again it’s very simple; it holds its zero and presents a clear and crisp red dot.

Overall * * * *
One star off for how noticeable blue tint compared to other optics. That’s me trying to find something to complain about. Admittedly the low mount having a QD option would be slick, but it’s not something worth docking a point over. STNGR’s Axiom is a rock-solid little optic with a very high performance to price ratio.

comments

  1. avatar No one of Consequence says:

    Where is it made?

    (I know, I know … if I have to ask…)

    1. avatar enuf says:

      Agreed. If they are not willing to advertise where it is made, it is likely made by Chinese Communists.

  2. avatar CentralVirginian says:

    Most budget options have auto shutoff, if this doesn’t, it would set it apart from the competition.

  3. avatar sound awake says:

    msrp on this thing is $115…
    ok so theres already a bunch of name and no name brands of 2 moa red dots on amazon with 4.5 stars and hundreds if not thousands of reviews each and proven reliability with pricing in the $35-$100 range
    also:
    sig romeo msr>$120
    vortex crossfire gen ll>$150
    ive seen romeo 5s and rebranded holosun truglos on sale there for 130-140 or so
    or get the deal from psa where you buy a $150 vortex primary arms sig sauer or similar red dot for $200 and get 10 pmags for free which means youre really getting the red dot for like 100
    not knocking the “stngr axiom”…
    im just sayin…

    1. avatar Matt in Oklahoma says:

      SIG Romeo is also shake awake

    2. avatar Dan says:

      The STNGR has a lifetime warranty going for it. Vortex offers the same but Sig, Holosun and generic Amazon red dots don’t.

  4. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

    we’ve got a handful of trs25’s with 3moa dots; this axiom isn’t much more and i’d prefer the smaller 2moa for longer shots.
    stuff in this price range is bound to be chicom. i wince, but for range toys…

  5. avatar enuf says:

    Made in China by Communists?

    Or someplace else?

    If a company is not willing to put that information out front, then they do not need my money.

  6. avatar former water walker says:

    My favorite LGS had a Sig Romeo sale for $99 last week. I’m set for optics for now or I would have jumped on it. This optic looks good though…

    1. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

      Wow! Great price.

  7. avatar strych9 says:

    Pretty cool. Sucks that ammo is so expensive that just a few rounds to sight in an optic almost feels like a waste for most people.

    1. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

      candy, film, meat, gas. all stuff that did not go back down after the reason for the inflate was resolved.
      we’ll get used to it.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        I rather doubt that this is true over a longer time frame.

        A fair number of formerly popular hobbies/activities have declined in popularity due to a combination of factors which are partly intrinsic to the hobby/activity, partly social and partly economic. These factors tend, over time to be linked.

        At this point those hobbies have a significant price barrier to entry and are therefore generally less popular.

        Unless real wages for Gen Z basically explode as compared to the real wage growth in the last ~35 years you will see a drop in gun ownership requisite to people being priced out of the game.

        That’s bad news for the 2A going forward. Politicians will reflect the population and judicial appointments will reflect the politicians.

        1. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

          i hesitate to agree. there is no equal yet to firearm ownership. besides the satisfaction of a well placed shot and the possible harvest that that may incur, possession is the best chance of defending yourself against another.
          i believe the draw is almost irresistible and can withstand a substantial increase in costs. as has been shown with a flat iron steak, candy bars, kodachrome (before digi, but still for some of us luddites) and of course pepto- i’d continue ridin’ at tenbucks a gallon. sugar, silver, livestock and oil costs all came back down when supply lines returned, but they kept the inflated prices.
          we may be saying different things. with cheap dependable designs available from new manufacturing techniques the costs for entry may may not rise (without taxes, etc.).

  8. avatar H Allen Davis LLD says:

    I really am a big fan of STNGR’s handguards. I had a really minor issue with one I bought about a year ago, and contacted them. The very next day, I had a brand new replacement, along with a goodie bag with all kinds of nice little things, along with provisions for me to return the “old” handguard. In other words, they bent over backwards, went the extra mile, blah blah blah, but I really can’t say enough good things about them! Hell, I wrote them a glowing letter of praise to thank them for their unsurpassed customer service, and the day after that, they sent me a free pair of their $100 Alpine sunglasses, and those things are as good, or better, than any pair of Oakleys I’ve ever seen.
    I’d buy one of these sights just out of pure loyalty to the company if only it didn’t use the dial option for cranking up or lowering the dot brightness. Hell, I might buy one anyway and gift it to my son. He could use it.
    I’ll say if anybody buys one of these and has a problem with it, STNGR will move heaven and earth to make things right with you!

  9. avatar Matt in SC says:

    How about a review of that MCARBO optic mount? I’ve been looking for something for the sub2k for awhile and just haven’t found anything that made me pull the trigger.

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