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There was apparently a bit of a dust-up yesterday involving L-3 – -manufacturer of the EOTech holographic weapon sight system and the U.S. Government. The Feds had been investigating some problems with L3’s claims about the accuracy and reliability of their devices in low temperature and high moisture environments (i.e., a large block of ice). Apparently, not only did EOTech discover the problems during their own testing, but they then failed to disclose the results . . .

Apparently having been caught dead to rights, the parent company moved to make the problem go away as quickly as humanly possible. From Soldier Systems:

By mid afternoon, L-3 had settled with the government for $25.6 million which clearly indicates L-3 has known since summer how much the US Government would be willing to accept in relief.  Their quick action helped turn a drop in stock value of more than 6% at mid-day, yet they still closed the day down from opening prices.

What remains, is for L-3 to answer to domestic consumers, state and local governments as well as international customers.

That last part is really the issue. Those involved haven’t been very forthcoming about the exact nature of the performance problems and the fact that L-3 actively tried to cover this whole thing up isn’t very comforting. Are we talking about “springtime in Alaska” levels of cold and moisture or “Captain America frozen in Antarctica” levels of cold and moisture? It makes a difference .

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  1. This is sort of the last nail for me. Been looking back and forth between them and Aimpoint. Looks like I have my answer.

    • I have both. Go for the Aimpoint.

      I used to prefer the EOTech reticle over a simple dot because it’s a little bigger and “felt” faster, but dots are plenty quick. The real deal-sealer for me is battery life. When it’s measured in years there’s really no reason to ever turn an Aimpoint off.

      • Cost has been a major determining factor up until now. I could grab one of the XPS models for around $400. Palmetto State Armory is running Black Friday deal on an H1 micro at $399. The sheer size of the Eotech is a bit of a turn off as well. Friends of mine swear by the Eotech, but you can’t argue with the bomb-proof reliability of Aimpoint.

    • I saved up and bought an Eotech XPS last year… my first big-boy optic (IE one that costs more than $40).

      All things considered, I’m not super impressed. It does its job, and does it well. But I realized that its more sight than I need, and not versatile enough to justify the cost and weight. It also lacks some features that I’ve realized must be standard on a combat optic: Year of battery life and Constant on. (heck I’d settle for just a constant-on option)

      I’m selling it soon and picking up a Trijicon RMO. The lack of both the “years of battery life” and constant-on features on the Eotech are frankly deal breakers for a defensive gun. I can’t afford to be punching buttons trying to turn my sight on when the bedroom door was just kicked in – and *then* rack the charging handle. A modern combat red-dot needs to be ON. ALWAYS.

      Same with pistol red dots, but that’s another story.

    • I have the aimpoint pro and its a great red dot I was fixing to buy a eotech red dot…but guess this makes me a aimpoint man for life!!!

  2. While the up-covering is disturbing, I only have the one EOTech… and I live in Texas, so I’m not all that worried. Also, not being a “Woo hoo! Let’s cash in on a class action!” kind of person, I probably won’t make waves in that pool either… well, unless it is a significant payout, of course. I’m conscientious, not stupid!

    • Scroll down and find the link about how heat negatively affects it, as well.

      Does it exceed 122 degrees F very often in AZ? Like, in your vehicle?

  3. I was following this hoping for some cheap 300 black I’m not going to be out in a real real cold Swamp but it does get cold in Michigan

  4. Eotech has been a hype product like NIkes for as long as I can remember. I recall the only reason to buy an Eotech and pay that absurd price was to keep up with the Jones’ on ARFCOM. I’d rather spend the money on a Bushnell, Leupold or Nightforce scope.

  5. I have Aimpoint/EOTech and preferred EOTech when shooting. I went through a carbine class in cold very wet weather recently with a newer 517. I always put new batteries in before a class, and it shutdown twice during the course of the day I think due to the wet sandy environment we were in. I had a hell of a time that day especially beyond 200 yards possibly because of a POI shift (after reading this)? I wished I brought my VCOG which I left home because I didn’t want to subject it to that crap weather. I know many people have taken them to war but I am done with EOTech for any serious use. I own two and they have already been moved to range toys.

    • I hear you can send them back and get a full retail refund which is great because I just picked up one 558 nv for $250 and it retails for $629. and what bothers me is everybody is all the sudden talking s*** about them after this came out they are a great company with a great product that they are having problems with it will end up fixing I won’t be sending mine back I will be keeping it it’s very nice

  6. A government contractor knowingly supplying goods that don’t actually meet the performance specs they claim it does? That almost never happens…

  7. We won one in their giveaway contest a few summers ago and so far have been pleased with it. No issues, but then our lives don’t depend on it either. Would at least like to see the price come down on them. I’d buy another for sure if the price was halved. That relatively thin window makes two-eye acquisition easier than a lot of their competitors.

  8. Never been a fan of EOTech. Have many (more than several) Aimpoints from the mid 90’s and they are still ticking right along. They have been dropped, left outside for days in the winter, rained on, mucked on, and generally beat like a mule. No issues. EOTech form factor is too large. Not a hater, just think there are better options for the money.

  9. At our local gun shop where I work Part time We sell eotech an Aimpoint. And Trijicon And a couple others. I have personally seen at least a half a dozen eotech holographic sightsCome in Broken Weather The battery Holder Has given up the ghost or the site itself Doesn’t work. And yes I would think well there’s some people that probably abused their sides and do things they’re not supposed to do to them And may have caused some of these problems but I have seen a jump in the amount of product from eotech That we carry in our store Have to go back to eotech for replacement. And since I was in the military four and a half tours In Iraq, and Afghanistan I have to say one thing It’s not a red. If it isn’t an Aimpoint. Aimpoint is owned by Aimpoint not some subsidiary company manufacturing The product in 3 different places If I remember correctly and points made in Sweden At one facility With the most sophisticated systems of keeping the product in a vacuum and sealed from dust with debris and static electricity. It almost looks like One of those Space Center assembly lines where they manufacture parts for the space shuttle its no joke I saw Larry Vickers take a tour of the Aimpoint facility And I was highly impressed with the quality control and the manufacturing processes in which Aimpoint goes through to make such a superior product. I have to give it to Trisha con as well they call that I used over in the sandbox Took one hell of a beating And when I was blown up from an IED it survived when my m4 did not. I think eotech Started producing Their products in multiple manufacturing facilities and quality control went right in the toilet. Like I’ve been saying for years If it isn’t an Aimpoint it isn’t worth your time. Eotech overpriced Garbage. I live in Florida Where it gets 100% humidity And rains all the time And I’ve had a couple customers that are hog hunters And get their equipment wet all the time And both of them Had to replace their eotech More than once Not do the batteries due to moisture humidity penetrating into the electronics of the actual unit And frying it. If you’re going to spend that kind of money you might as well buy an AimpointProm comin Broken Weather the battery Holder Has given up the ghost or the side itself Does it work. And yes I would think well there’s some people that probably abuse their site cindy things third of supposed to do to them And may have caused summer these problems but I have seen a jump in the amount of product from yo tak that we carry in our store have to go back to your tax for replacement. And since I was in the military 4 the house tours in iraq, and afghanistan I have to say 1 thing it’s not a red dot if it is in the name point. And point is owned by aim point not some soup cetera re company manufacturing the product in 3 different places If I remember correctly and points made in sweden At 1 facility With the most sophisticated systems of keeping the product in a vacuum and sealed from dust went debris and static electricity. It almost looks like 1 of those space center assembly line with a manufacture parts for the space shuttle it’s no joke I saw larry bakers take it or of the n point this silly day And I was highly impressed with the quality control and a manufacturing process is in which game point goes through to make such a superior products. I have to give it to trade yukon as well they called I used over in the sandbox took 1 hell of the beating and when I was blown up from a nice d it survived when my m 4 did not. I think he owed tack Started producing their products in malta ball manufacturing facilities and quality control went riding the toilet. Like I’ve been saying for years If it is in a name point it isn’t worth your time. Yo tech overpriced garbage. I live in florida Wheree gets 100 percent humidity and rains all the time And I’ve had a couple customers that are hall connors and get their equipment wet all the time and both of them Had to replace 30 ot tax more than once not do do batteries do to more stars humidity penetrating into the electronix of the actual unit and frying yet. If you’re going to spend that kind of money your -0 by name point Or if you don’t mind the book of it I tried to call nate cog! And you should be in good business Leave those gimmick holographic sites Do people that shoot 22 matches

    • So … You work in a shop that sells EOtechs, and a bunch of them have come back.

      Good to know. Thanks.

      I’m off to peruse the Primary Arms website. Been looking at a HoloSun – I’m not an operator, just want to have some fun with the gun. (Er, rifle. Whatever.)

    • You may have none broken in your closet or in your gunVault brother. Eotech In the last year and a half Expanded their production Two three different Manufacturing locations That’s when all this started happening is win their quality control wasn’t being monitored by the guys that originally started Manufacturing eotech. They got greedy the cash got in their face and they said you know what we can have these things made in Tijuana if we want and that’s where they went wrong They’re not making their product under their own roof Therefore their checks and balances Aren’t being followed specifically to a tee Which in real world statistics means they really don’t give a shit about your life Because that piece of equipment may be the only thing between you and an untimely death! I wouldn’t be surprised if a couple class action lawsuits aren’t filed due to death of users of that product when they fail. Also you need to think where do you live If you live in Florida Orion Alaska You’re going to have a problem with eotech nowadays The high moisture And the extreme temperature changes cause condensation to form on the inside of the unit on the electronics Not so if you live in Arizona or California in the desert. But as far as living in what I like to call little Vietnam the state of Florida lol Moisture humidity Temperature Extreme temperature changes one day at 100 degrees with 100% humidity the next day at 60 degrees with 35% relative humidity Causes condensation to form on the units because they’re not sealed right Because the people Manufacturing them don’t care if they sell them up right they can’t see it from their house!

      • If any sort of product needs 100% inspection, this is certainly one. Any executive who isn’t constantly thinking of quality control isn’t qualified for the job.

  10. This could be great news for the civilian market. I’m imagining a flood of inexpensive EOTechs hitting the market. There is really nothing wrong with them on a home defense or plinking gun. Sure they may not fair well in the extreme environment the military exposes them too but in the real civilian and law enforcement world they are fine in most instances. Yes the trunk of a car in AZ during the summer would be an exception, which is why you change your equipment if you are in that kind of environment.

    • There is something wrong with them for home defense use. They have parallax issues, as in they are not parallax free and conditions cause it to WORSEN, not develop, but WORSEN. This includes distance and external environmental factors. Also, the reticle fades with age and the reticle adjustments are NOT exactly 0.5 MOA adjustments, but rather APPROXIMATELY half MOA. Wow. what confidence on a sight that costs so much.

      • You nailed it on the head my friend. I’ve seen eotech come into the store after being out on a hunting trip in the soggy Marsh areas of South Florida And The customer tell me His holographic reticle Completely became unreadable After a light storm Where the humidity was over 100% relative. The reticle actually blurs And disappears partially out of you Of the weapons holder. I expect this from NcStar But not from a $700 Read. I’m sorry holographic sight Lol. Have you ever noticed they don’t sell and point at gun shows? There’s a reason behind it Eotech doesn’t care who they sell their product to as long as you place a big enough order I always see real eotech not the knockoffs from China at gun shows I never see and point at gun shows you have to go to a licensed authorized dealer of Aimpoint to purchase an Aimpoint.Aimpoint does not sell 2 people who do not have a brick and mortar store . They do sell two major online dealers But once again those dealers have a brick and mortar store And usually have a very good reputation With selling products online They’re very particular who they deal with. Probably because they don’t want a bunch of goofballs selling their product!

  11. Nothing new really. Eotech has been known as garbage for quite a while. This only provides solid proof, versus anecdotal “guy that I know” stories. In my mind, Vortex is #2 on my list for RDS. This only solidifies it.

  12. For most of us, that temperature means jack.

    MUCH more important is the POI / parallax issues also recorded. I thought I was crazy when setting up a new 300blk that was very accurate at 100-200 yards but miserable with subs at 25-50, even using known accurate loadings. Took off the EoTech EXPS-3 and tested with a Bushnell 1-6.5x and it shot cloverleaf groupings… Sold the EoTech and glad I got out when I did.

    For the record, my old AA powered EoTech 552 has been dead reliable and accurate for many years.

    • When i was a kid, my mother owned a Plymouth Volare. Our driveway was on a steep steep angle, and the car would never start in the morning. She would put me and my brother in the car, roll the car down the driveway with enough speed to carry us to a big hill that went down to main street. At the top of the hill she would open the hood, flood the carb, run to the back, push the car down the hill, run into the front seat as the car was taking off (with the hood up and the screwdriver in the carb) and hopefully start the car before we rolled into main street. Car was brand new. She brought it back to the dealer who told her to have the carb seals changed, after a few heat cycles they would dry out and the gas would leak, or air would get in, it was a nightmare for a 21 year old kid, with 2 kids who thought sticking a screwdriver into a carb was a reasonable fix, and just needed to get to work. Anywho… She ended up selling to some greedy guy who thought he was taking advantage of a young dumb girl for a few bucks off sticker.
      But for the RECORD, there was nothing wrong with that car.

  13. Got a question for you guys. I have a cheap red dot on my M-4, and would like to put a decent type of sight on it.
    Could someone “splain” the difference between the different type of sights, such as, red, holographic, What type is the Aim point, and the Eotech.
    Thanks, Gunr

  14. I may despise L3 and Eotech as a company but I love my 512 for more than one reason – primarily, it’s the only “red dot” sight that I’ve tried that doesn’t have a smeary, blooming dot. Aimpoints et al are terrible for me due to my poor vision. But the 512 also takes AA batteries that I always have on hand, and the dot is 1 MOA in size.

    I got my first Appleseed patch using my 512 on an AR-15.

    Trijicon amber “dots” also work for me but I think we all know the issues they have in variable lighting conditions.

    Are there any other “red dots” out there that give 1 MOA – level accuracy, cost less than $500, and don’t “smear”? Sadly, I think the answer is no.

    • That is like saying ” Well, I know it isn’t pointing at what I am pointing at, but the DOT IS SMALLER THAN YOURS!”
      I would rather have a 2 Moa from Trijicon for $450, or a $100 Tru-Glo with 2 Moa than have a FLOATING POI !!!

      • Eh, no. Perhaps you missed the part about “I got my first Appleseed patch using my 512 on an AR-15.”

        I shot many cloverleafs that day. You don’t do that with a sight that’s wandering around.

        • Yeah but was this before Eotech Outsource their manufacturing to three other facilities and what conditions were you using that 512? I doubt in the Appleseed program you’re going to be Doing Tactical injury Banging your weapon against doorways an assailant Or on a Combat field. Shooting NcStar will work for a day during the Appleseed program Come on now let’s get real.And $700 for a site That can’t be used as an infantryman site In a combat situation That comes up the big junk to me

        • I don’t know where you do your shopping but I got my 512 for $385 several years ago (before the upcoming wave of discounts LOL). $700 is insane.

          To be fair I’m in central AZ and during the winter time it doesn’t get much below 32F, if it ever does. Though temps can vary by 50 degrees over the course of a day.

          As for POI shift due to banging around, I’ve seen no mention of that. All of the problems cited are about temperature and humidity. I haven’t beaten on my 512 but then I have no reason to.

  15. L3, The 3rd “L” for Lehman Brothers, the Wall St group that needed a handout to stay afloat. L-3 (named for Frank Lanza, Robert LaPenta and Lehman Brothers) was formed in 1997 to acquire certain business units from Lockheed Martin.

    I am sure they handed over the $$$$ quickly, they have a firm understanding of the stock market and corp welfare.

    They should have been giving the sights to Uncle Sammy for his charity (our tax dollars) back in 2008.

  16. eh, I’ve had a 511 for years and years and have had zero issues except the stupid “N” cell batteries are a pain in the ass and the only reason I replaced it honestly. That sight took a hell of a beating over it’s in-service life though.

  17. it always feels so good to have your opinions turned into facts by debacles like this. i have been saying for years, as others have as well, that EOTechs are just no where near worth the money. Alot like Kimbers.

  18. Never shot an eo tech. Love my aimpoint though.

    On another note re: the pic for this article. I’ve heard of “nose to the charging handle”, but that guy looks to be teeth to the charging handle. Needs a stock adjustment.

    • The nose to charging handle technique was taught to index eye relief on iron sights. It means nothing when using a red dot or holographic sight.

  19. Glad i always stayed with Aimpoint since beginning. Looking at Trijicon MRO now, kinda fancy the bigger view at similiar weight.

  20. I had an XPS2 for a carbine class and it was raining all day. About three hours into the rain and the sight went down. I had to run my BUIS for the rest of the class. I had to ship it back to get it fixed after the class. I now run a T1 Micro, so that’s my review on that.

    I do love the looks of the EoTech but hard to trust after it went down.

  21. I can’t believe how inaccurate and misleading this article is! Shame on you for spreading such obvious falsehoods!

    Everybody knows Captain America was frozen in the ARCTIC, not Antarctic!

    Please bother to get your facts straight before publishing from now on!


  22. Won mine in a raffle (with the RRA LAR it came on) back in 2008-ish. Seems to be holding up well, but it has not been in extreme conditions yet.

  23. I purchased he $100 Tru-glo and other type red dot sights for years. They would last a year then malfunction.

    Then I bought my first EoTech.. The difference was profound. Now I have three EoTechs and have have not any problems.

  24. Well just finish a tactical course in cold weather a week ago and my EXPS2 ran just fine without any issues. Have some new scratches (LOL) but at least for me I am not seen problems at all. After reading about this issue decided to see if it had lost zero; no it was fine. So at least for me I will keep enjoying my eotech which has show it can still do its job and take the hits. There was an article that said EOTECH manuals did not show temperature parameters but actually online manuals still have them right from the company so I have to wonder where that info is coming from.

  25. EOTech commissioned a company called Optiflow Inc to help resolve some of their quality issues with their product, and also to create a laser diode to resolve the issues with thermal drift. They own quite a few of patents for the components of the EOTech gunsight and do most of the manufacturing. It’s an independent company so EOTech doesn’t have much oversight for their quality control.


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