3 MOA vs 6 MOA Red Dot Sight

Are you shopping for a new red dot sight and don’t know which is best? You have probably heard people talk about the “MOA” of the dot sight. But, if you’re like most people…you have no clue what that means. In this post, we’ll teach you everything there is to know about red dot sights and help you choose between 3 MOA vs 6 MOA.

3 MOA vs 6 MOA – Which Is Best?

comparing the two differnt dot sights: 3 MOA vs 6 MOA

If you are in the market for a new red dot sight and can’t decide between 3 MOA vs 6 MOA, we’re here to help. These are two of the most popular dot sizing options, but there are some small differences.

  • 3 MOA – When sighting a target at 100 yards, the reticle will appear to be 3 inches in diameter.
  • 6 MOA – When sighting a target at 100 yards, the reticle will appear to be 6 inches in diameter.

Takeaway = If you want to optimize for longer distances go with a 3 MOA red dot. If you want to optimize for a short distance a 6 MOA red dot is the best option.

When To Use 3 MOA

The 3 MOA red dot is optimal for longer range shooting, 3 MOA red dot sights appear to be 3″ in diameter at 100 yards & have a smaller dot size than 6 MOA sights. It is important to know what MOA on a red dot sight is as well!


The smaller dot is what makes them more precise at longer range, which is ideal for competition or even tactical shooting. However, the small dot is not optimal for close-quarters shooting or home defense.

When To Use 6 MOA

The 6 MOA dots are optimal for shorter-range shooting. This sight will appear to be 6″ in diameter when sighting a target from 100 yards.

The bigger dot allows you to acquire your target quickly and place accurate shots with ease. For this reason, they are often used for home defense and law enforcement applications.

This larger dot reticle can be used for medium-range shooting, but will not be as precise as a 3 MOA or 1 MOA sight. Small dots will always be better for long-range shooting. 6 MOA may also be better for use in poor lighting conditions. In bright sunlight, there is no issue. But in dark conditions, smaller dots do not perform as well.

Where To Buy

If you are in the market for a new dot sight, shopping online is the way to go. There are dozens of differernt scope brands that provide quality options depending on your needs. If you happen to own a M&P-15 Sport 2, then check out our list of the Best Scopes for M&P 15 Sport 2! If you’re looking for the Best Red Dot Sights for AR15 with Fixed Front Sight, we also got you covered.

What About 1 MOA?

If you’re shooting at targets that are far away, then a 1-MOA dot will cover less of the target, making it easier to hit your mark. On the other hand, if you’re shooting at closer range targets it will not be as effective as a 3 MOA or 6 MOA red dot sight. In our article comparing 6 MOA vs 2 MOA we saw that changing reticle sizes makes a big difference!

Definition of MOA

A MOA, or Minute of Angle, is an angular measurement. It is typically used in reference to firearms, and is equal to 1/60th of a degree. 1 MOA red dot sight or holographic sight’s reticle would be 1″ diameter when sighting a target at 100 yards.

In other words, it is pretty small. So small, in fact, that most people probably couldn’t tell the difference between two objects that were one MOA apart.

Is 3 or 6 MOA Better For Astigmatism?

Astigmatism is a very common vision or eyesight condition where the lens of the eye has an irregular shape. This can cause blurred or distorted vision that can make the red appear stretched or misshapen.

When it comes to choosing your red dot size for Astigmatism, similar principles apply. If you plan on shooting from close range, 6 MOA is the best option. The dot is larger & makes it easier to quickly acquire targets from closer distances. If you plan on shooting from further distances, a 3 MOA dot is probably the better option. The dot is smaller and will not completely cover your target from longer shooting distances.

Neither the 3 MOA or 6 MOA is inherently better for Astigmatism. It will largely depend on your specific eye condition and shooting conditions. You can also consider using a green dot reticle to minimize the shape distortion.


Many shooters get confused thinking about moa vs mrad scopes. MRAD and MOA both have their pros and cons, but it really comes down to a matter of personal preference. MRAD is short for milliradians, and it’s the unit of measurement used by people that like centimeters. The advantage of MRAD is that it’s more precise, so if you value extreme percision, MRAD is probably the way to go. The disadvantage of MRAD is that it’s not as widely used as MOA, so you might have a hard time finding compatible sights.

Benefits of Red Dot Sights

Red dot sights have become very popular in recent years amongst shooters. With the benefits of modern technology, the benefits of red dot sights can’t be ignored. And if you are trying to figure out if green or red dot sights are better, we have you covered. Here are 3 of the main benefits of a red dot sight.

1) Fast Target Acquisition

Red dot sights are popular because they allow for quicker target acquisition & better accuracy. This means that you can lock on to a target quickly, which is important in high-pressure situations.

2) Easy To Use

Red dot sights are beginner-friendly. Having just one reticle makes them very easy to use. No need to worry about lining up the front sight and rear sight like you do with iron sights. Just put the red dot on your target and pull the trigger. Choosing the right red dot makes precision shooting much easier!

3) Intuitive Feedback

Have you ever fired a few rounds at a target, only to find you missed every time? I know I have (if you haven’t…we’ll I don’t believe you). You should know just how frustrating it can be trying to correct your misses. Red dot sights are popular because they give you the instant feedback you need to correct your misses.

By aligning the red dot with your target, you can ensure that your shot is on target. And, if you’re still off, the red dot will let you know where you need to adjust.

FAQs – Red Dot Sights

Is 3 MOA good for pistol?

A 3 MOA red dot for a pistol is a great option. This size sight will give you a happy medium of accuracy at distance and close range performance. If you only want to shoot tight small groups from long distance, go with a 1 MOA sight.

What is the difference between 1 MOA and 3 MOA?

The difference between 1 MOA vs 3 MOA is the dot size. 1 MOA will appear to be 1 inch in dimater at 100 yards. 3 MOA will appear to be 3 inches in diameter at 100 yards.

Is smaller MOA better?

A smaller MOA (minute of angle) generally corresponds to a more precise shot, but it can also be more difficult to see the target. It really depends on your specific situation and what you are hoping to accomplish. A smaller dot is best for accurate long-range shots. Therefore, if you want to shoot longer distances and have to choose between 3 MOA vs 6 MOA, go with the 3 MOA. The smaller dot will help you shoot accurately from longer distances.

What is the difference between 2 MOA and 3 MOA?

A 2 MOA red dot will appear to be 2 inches in diamter at 100 yards. A 3 MOA red dot will appear to be 3 inches in diameter at 100 yards. 2 MOA and 3 MOA have a different angular measurement that makes them effective at different target ranges.

What is the best MOA for red dot?

It depends on what type of shooting you're doing and what you feel most comfortable with. If you're doing a lot of close-range shooting, then 6 MOA might be the way to go. But if you're aiming for targets that are farther away, then 3 MOA might be a better option. This is because 3 MOA has a smaller dot size making it ideal for long-range target shooting. Therefore, there is no right or wrong answer...just pick the dot size that helps you produce more accurate shots from your preferred distance.

What is a 6 MOA dot?

A 6 MOA dot will appear 6 inches in diameter at 100 yards. This is a common size for a red dot sight. It means that the dot will cover 6 inches of the target at 100 yards, or 6.5 MOA. If you are using your handgun for self-defense, the 6 MOA dot size is a great option because it is very quick to acquire a sight picture at close range.

What does 3 MOA mean on a red dot?

3 MOA stands for 3 Minutes of Angle, and it's a measurement of how accurate a red dot sight is. Basically, if you're looking at a target 100 yards away through a 3 MOA red dot sight, the dot will appear 3 inches in diameter. So, the smaller the MOA number, the more accurate the sight.

Are there any 1 MOA red dots?

Yes, the red dot is available in three different dot sizes (1.0 MOA, 3.25 MOA, or 6.5 MOA). 1 MOA red dot appears to be a one-inch diameter circle when looking at a target 100 yards away. The small, medium, and large red dot sights are designed to fit the specific needs of your firearm.

The Bottom Line

Now you should be able to decide between 3 MOA vs 6 MOA dot sights. If you want a sight that is great for close-up shots and fast target acquisition, go with the 6 MOA dot. If you are looking for a sight that will give you better accuracy at long distances, choose the 3 MOA dot. Choose the sight that works best for your preference and goals. Let us know if you have any questions!

About the author

Patrick Howard

I have been working as a gunsmith for 20 years. Rain, fog, moisture, high temperature, or even snow are all the things a product must withstand in order to be recommended by me.

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