The VUDU line from EOTech started with their Front Focal Plane 1-6x. 9-Hole Reviews has reviewed the optic, still offered, and found it… wanting. The 1-6x30mm line is well established as a solid standard for carbine optics, with several strong offerings from numerous companies in a broad price range.
The VUDU… is not one of them. Josh and Henry agree.
Heck, EOTech somewhat agrees too, but it sold popularly enough that it would have been foolish to discontinue out of hand.
You see if you follow the model release line, and after having talked with EOTech, their 1-6 was never meant to be the flagship LPVO offering. That flagship was the 1-8 they developed next, which offers far superior illumination, capped turrets, brighter light transmission, and a very simple useable reticle.
So why the 1-6? Simple, a partially refunded proof of concept. And to work the bugs out as it were. One of the neat things EOTech did with the VUDU is keep their distinctive HWS reticle pattern at 1x, they then have a scaled center reticle for the FFP that is usable at higher magnification. This is neat, this doesn’t work out tremendously in practical shooting. The illumination is also problematic for FFP optics with how you have to illuminate the reticle. FFP optics with good illumination tend to be very expensive for a reason.
Most 1-6 offerings are Second Focal Plane, several 1-8’s to include the VUDU are too, and these SFP optics fit neatly into their role as carbine optics without needing an immensely detailed scaled reticle for the 6x erector range. Looking at FFP 1-6’s they tend to have poor reticle design. Even the venerable, durable, and otherwise well regard VCOG from Trijicon is much better reticled in its 1-8 scopes than the 1-6.
The 1-6 is helmed by the Second Focal Plane and that makes for one of the two chief problems with the VUDU 1-6, reticle scaling. It’s easier, as we see from the 1-8 and 1-10 FFP offerings, to build for those ranges and make the reticles work well.
The second, and arguably the one that seals these scopes into the realm of hobby optics instead of duty, are the uncapped and unlocked turrets. The carbine optic zero can be messed with easily and unintentionally by accidently turning one of the turrets, this problem is corrected on the 1-8 and 1-10 models with capped and locking turrets.
Where would the VUDU 1-6 work best? I’d say today that probably precision .22lr or action .22lr where the reticle scaling could allow for quickly adjusted shots but not at truly extreme distances. The scope is not without merits, it just doesn’t excel at the things most people ask out of a 1-6 LPVO as a fighting carbine optic.
I’ve said it before and I will likely say it again as the topic reemerges, the 1-4x, 5x, 6x and even up into 8x are all great carbine optics on anything in intermediate rifle caliber and with a 10″ or longer barrel. They work swiftest and smoothest in that role with SFP reticles. Front focal is the realm of precision. I understand why the US Army and Marines chose FFP, but they are also working within a couple extra parameters selected. Namely that their ammo is selected for them, their rifles are selected for them, and they are trying to reach a specific basic proficiency with a tight learning curve within those two previous parameters.