Aimpoint is recognized as the worldwide leader and originator of the red dot sighting technology. President of Aimpoint Inc., Brian Lisankie, shares insight on the company’s history, the renowned quality of Aimpoint sights, and what exciting improvements in red dot technology lay ahead.
FFL Unleashed: Looking at Aimpoint’s TBT posts on Facebook, it seems you must be the longest running maker of red dot sights; is that correct? What advantage does experience and longevity give you in the marketplace?
Lisankie: This year, Aimpoint is celebrating our 40th anniversary as the industry leader in electronic reflex sighting technology, and this has been a remarkable journey. The Aimpoint products you see today are the result of 40 years of the company’s focus on electro-optical science. There is no substitute for experience, and all of the lessons we have learned over the past four decades; in the field with hunters, on patrol with law enforcement, and in combat with the military, have subsequently been incorporated into our products as improvements.
FFL Unleashed: What can you tell us about the new H-2 that makes it such a great choice for hunters and for the shooting sports? Are there tactical applications as well?
Lisankie: Aimpoint sights were originally developed back in 1975 as hunting sights, but it didn’t take long for them to come to the attention of law enforcement and the U.S. Military. This created opportunities to adapt product designs for tactical use. The common element is that all shooters benefit from the ability to get on target quickly and accurately and to engage and hit moving targets shooting with both eyes open.
The primary advantages of the new Micro H-2 are its compact size and extreme versatility. The ability to mount the Micro H-2 on nearly everything you hunt with: rifles, shotguns, handguns, muzzleloaders, crossbows, and compound bows truly makes it the “sight for all seasons”. This sight will also dramatically increase confidence in your shooting ability, no matter what you are hunting. The Micro H-2 is also an outstanding choice for tactical applications. By adding a 39mm spacer between the mount base and the sight, the H-2 is immediately ready for use on AR-15 or M4 Carbines – providing absolute co-witness with backup iron sights. This sight can also be used without a spacer on combat shotguns, sub machine guns, AK-47s, and handguns.
FFL Unleashed: What’s the most common misperception or misunderstanding new customers have about red dot sights?
Lisankie: Many shooters assume that red dot sights are only useful for close-range shooting. While it is true that Aimpoint sights are the optic of choice for multiple close-range and moving targets, these same advantages extend out beyond 200-300 yards depending on the shooter. Even farther when used with one of our accessory magnifiers.
Another misunderstanding we frequently encounter is the idea the red dot needs to be centered within the sight tube for an accurate shot. This is not true. The fact that Aimpoint sights offer parallax free performance means that wherever you see the dot on your target, no matter where it is within the sight tube, is where your shot is aimed. This feature, combined with the product’s design to be utilized with both eyes open is the core reason why Aimpoint sights are so fast and accurate.
The third misperception we see is the idea that you need to turn an Aimpoint sight off to save your battery. All of our products are designed to be left on so they are always ready for use. Even our most basic product can be left on constantly for one year. Our other models offer constant-on use of three, or five years depending on the model. In the case of the CompM4, the sight the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force utilize as the M68CCO, the constant-on runtime is up to eight years. None of our competitors offer this level of performance.
FFL Unleashed: Aimpoint is renowned for its quality, but is also known to be more expensive than other brands. How can dealers best encourage customers to step up to Aimpoint from others they may be considering because of the lower price points?
Lisankie: The old sayings that “you get what you pay for”, and “it costs a lot of money to buy cheap” spring to mind. Aimpoint sights are premium optics, and the product’s parallax free optics, years of constant-on use, and ability to survive being spiked onto a concrete surface add substantial manufacturing cost compared to most of our competitors. All of our sights are designed to provide their owners with an enormous value, perform flawlessly under all conditions imaginable, and hold their value very well in case you ever want to trade up. We also understand and appreciate not everyone can afford to spend $800+ for an optic, so over the past couple of years we have launched the Patrol Rifle Optic (PRO) that provides a long list of features in the $425 range, as well as the Aimpoint Carbine Optic (ACO) that provides everything the AR15/M4 Carbine owner needs in an optic for under $400.
FFL Unleashed: What tools/info/data does Aimpoint offer dealers to help them provide the facts about red dot systems to consumers?
Lisankie: Aimpoint provides several types of product and sales training to our dealers. Online training is available to all dealers through Experticity’s 3point5.com website. We also encourage our dealers and retail associates to visit the company website www.aimpoint.com where they can review the entire product line, company press releases and more. Aimpoint offers point-of-purchase counter displays which list the product features/benefits on the side visible to the customer and key selling points are featured on the side visible from behind the counter. We also have offer outstanding on-site training conducted by our full-time sales associates as well as our dedicated Pro Staff.
Aimpoint also owns and operates the only full size, live-fire shooting cinema in the USA. Located in Grapevine, Texas, just minutes from DFW International Airport, Sportsman Shooting Center offers the opportunity to try the entire Aimpoint line of sights on Blaser hunting rifles, Noveske 5.56 Carbines, and LaRue Tactical 7.62 rifles on a state-of-the-art indoor range facility, shooting live ammunition at a full-sized movie screen that can project anything from hunting scenarios to dynamic sport shooting and tactical video images. You’ve never seen anything like it, and it is certainly worth the trip. www.SportsmanShootingCenter.com.
FFL Unleashed: What lies ahead in red dot technology? Can they get any better than Aimpoint’s current lineup?
Lisankie: Aimpoint’s development group in Sweden always has multiple new product concepts being developed and tested prior to release to the market. It’s a fascinating place to visit – it’s like the secret weapons lab in the James Bond movies. One of the best parts of my job is the opportunity to try out new product concepts and designs before they are finalized. I can tell you that there are several amazing products currently in preparation for the 2016 SHOT Show. One of the company’s latest offerings is a military fire control system known as the Dynamic Universal Reflex Sight (DURS). This system utilizes an integrated laser range finder, and motion/environmental sensors, which combine to provide first shot hit capability on Carl Gustav rocket launchers, as well as with air-burst ordnance fired from Mark 19 grenade launchers. Miniaturization of this kind of advanced military technology could offer some interesting options to small arms shooters in the coming years.