Primary Arms 1-6x24mm ACSS Reticle

Primary Arms has built a name for themselves by selling mid-priced optics that have decent quality. Not as expensive as a Trijicon but much better quality than UTG, Primary Arms has expanded their inventory over the years and earned a reputation for quality sights. Primary Arms also developed the ACSS reticle including a version for M855A1, which is now being evaluated for use by the US Marine Corps RCO. This reticle is really the star of the show in the 1-6x24mm so it’s worth spending some time on it before moving on to the other features.

The ACSS reticle

The ACSS reticle


It has a lot going on but somehow manages not to be too busy. The horizontal stadia lines on the vertical post in the center match 18″ at the corresponding ranges, which happens to be the approximate width of an average adult male’s shoulders. The stadia lines also correspond to the bullet drop expected at that range. To fine tune the bullet drop for various loads, the sight comes with a table indicating the appropriate zero distance and height above POA for several popular bullet weights and velocities. The black bar on the right side of the reticle represents 5’10” at the corresponding ranges. This is helpful because the larger the object is that you are using to estimate range, the more accurate your estimate will be. The dots to either side of the central vertical post are 5 mph wind holds and the two larger dots are intended for a lead on a target running at 100 yards.

The ACSS reticle at 1x

The ACSS reticle at 1x

The 1x setting is very close to a true 1 power with minimal distortion around the edges of the image. While many sights claim to have “daylight visible” illumination, they really just mean that you can tell the reticle is illuminated during daylight hours. This sight literally goes up to 11 and is bright enough that it really pops in full sun. It isn’t as bright as a TA31 fiber optic illuminated reticle, but it does grab your attention. The glass is not as clear as higher end optics, there’s no getting around that fact, but for the price, you can’t really expect it to be equal to Leupold or Schmidt & Bender. It is still better than many of its peers in price. I have a Burris that isn’t quite as crisp and gathers less light with a larger objective lens.

Windage knob

Windage knob

The controls are positive and easy to operate with several nice touches. The windage ant elevation turrets have a zero ring that you can set to easily return to zero, should sight corrections be necessary. The brightness adjustment knob goes all the way around so you can go from 0 to 11 with one click and the cap for the brightness knob has a spot for a spare battery. Even better, it actually came with two batteries. One installed, and the other in the spare compartment. While I haven’t intentionally left it on to measure battery performance, I did accidentally leave it on at about 8 over a three day weekend. It was still bright when I discovered that it was on. The battery isn’t going to last 50,000 hours like an Aimpoint, but it is also an etched reticle so it still works whether or not it’s illuminated and I found myself leaving the illumination off, except for low light conditions.

Overall, this is a fantastic sight for the money and highly versatile. If you can afford to spend three times as much, you can certainly buy a better sight, but I’m not convinced that you can find one that is three times as good for any price.


Andrew is a combat veteran of OEF and has performed hundreds of ballistic tests for his YouTube channel, The Chopping Block ( He is an avid firearm collector and competitor and lives with his family in Arizona. If you have any questions, you may email him at


  • Sgt. Stedenko

    KISS reticle for the win.

  • JumpIf NotZero

    I get why people like that reticle… still one of the worst options available.

    • Lt. Dan

      Why is it one of the worst options? What would you suggest instead?

      • JumpIf NotZero

        FFP, real milling in 1/2s, at least some portion with finer scaling, simple

    • Flounder

      So helpful. Not even an anecdote to share with the group! I mean, do you not like it for personal preference? Or maybe a logical things?

      • Henry Reed

        This dude has been bashing products that he doesn’t own for years now. Never provides any credentials as far as I know, and rarely gives a better solution. Also loves to talk smack about people with real combat experience.

      • JumpIf NotZero

        Everything bad about BDC, being that it’s never actually right – plus a bunch of gimmicks.

        How’s that?

    • HonkyTonkHale

      I initially thought the reticle was too busy and distracting until I saw how small it is. The pics make it look like it would take up most of the picture, but you can see how easy it is on the eyes in the video.

    • Henry Reed

      I’m sure we’d all love to hear about your reticle of choice, which is without a doubt superior to anything being evaluated by the USMC. Tell us, what is your ultra-qualified criteria for choosing an optic, besides it being against the mainstream grain like everything else you probably buy?

  • john huscio

    Ill stick with my aimpoint pro

    • Flounder

      How is that even in the same market? Totally different things. But I guess you have some taste with the aimpoint…

      • Twilight sparkle

        I wouldn’t consider that having taste, more just proof that you spend too much time on arfcom

    • Chop Block

      That’s a nice Glock, I guess, but I’ll stick with my toaster.

  • James

    I’m in my third season of using this scope in 3Gun. It works well for close quarters and I’ve shot it out to 420yrds in a match.I’ve never used the illumination on it.

    The only competitor I would consider in second focal plane optics near this price point is Vortex’s Strike Eagle.

    • Dr. Longfellow Buchenrad

      IIRC the Strike Eagle is made on the same assmebly line. Its just whichever reticle you prefer and if you want Vortex’s warranty.

      • HonkyTonkHale

        I just got mine in the mail on Friday, and the Gen III versions now have a lifetime warranty from Primary Arms. The only difference between this and the Vortex Strike Eagle now is the turret caps, $40, and the reticle.

  • BattleshipGrey

    I love my PA 1-6x. Great price and quality.

  • Matt_from_Colorado

    How well does it work for .308? I’ve been looking for a cheep but decent quality scope for my Ruger SR-762.

    • Chop Block

      The trajectory should be similar to 800m. PA will give you exact bullet drop distances and the best zero to use if you give them the caliber, weight, BC, and MV of your load.

      • Matt_from_Colorado

        Thanks! Would PMC Bronze work as a good commercial load for calibration?

        • Chop Block

          You’ll want to zero with whatever load you plan to use for a match, etc.

    • Christopher Henry

      I put the Primary Arms 4-14 first focal plane scope on my SR-762. It comes with the 308 ACSS and its amazing! Other that the fact the SR weighs a lot and the scope also has weight to it the gun has become one of my favorites for accurate ranging. Think it was 269!!! at the time.


    Great reticle. I have the Strike eagle which is almost the same. Great quality, easy to pick up and get on target. Close range transitions from target to target with both eyes open are a snap. Added the quick view throw lever and this works great to switch to 4 or 6x. The money I saved by not buying an Aimpoint or a big T, I put into ammo going down range.I might not be Tacticool, but I can hit whatever I aim at. The reticle just works.

  • ro

    ” Overall, this is a fantastic sight for the money…” that’s the punchline….. did I miss the price?

    • Chop Block

      I typically don’t include price because prices change. If I say it costs 50 quatloos, two weeks later CTD will have a sale and someone will call me a liar.

  • Blake

    I absolutely love mine. I can’t imagine using any other reticle, this is by far the most useful and fast.

  • int19h

    They also have a 1-8x with the same reticle.

    It looks like it would make a lot of sense on a DMR – 8x at range, and 1x as fallback for combat at more regular ranges. I wonder if any military is exploring that.