In the not so distant past, we took a first look of the Sig Sauer Romeo 7 red dot optic. We have had this scope mounted to a test rifle for a few range sessions and we felt our readers needed to hear a more complete evaluation of the Romeo 7.
This full-sized red dot has many features we liked immensely and some features we grew to dislike. There is a lot of technology and features that the Sig Sauer Electro-Optics Division tried to pack into this 30mm red dot, and on many levels, they succeeded, but on a few, they fell a little bit short. Let’s start with the positive things we noticed about the Sig Sauer Romeo 7 during our tests.
Positive Attributes of the Romeo 7:
- Great size at 30mm, one of the largest sight pictures on the market for its class
- Affordably priced at $299
- Easy-to-use controls
- Sig quality
- Long battery life, over 60,000 hours
- Includes front and rear caps
- Uses an AA battery
- The red dot is easy to pick up during drills even at lower light settings
- Automatic on/off feature
The list of positive attributes of the Sig Sauer Romeo 7 is longer than what I listed above, but you get the general idea. The fact the Romeo 7 is a 30mm diameter optic where most red dots range between 20mm and 25 mm is a nice feature. The extra 5 mm diameter might not seem like a ton of space but I noticed the difference very quickly over the smaller Sig Sauer Romeo 5 when shooting the two side by side. That being said we have to address some of the negative issues about the Romeo 7 that we noticed during our range sessions while it was on our test rifle.
Negative Attributes of the Romeo 7:
- Weight, at 12.6 ounces, it’s not light at all
- Adjustment controls are terrible
- Base tension controls are difficult to get to and adjust
- No option to swap bases
The list of negative attributes about this optic isn’t in any way long or a deal-breaker in the big picture of things, but some of them are infuriating. The lack of a removable base pad is one that the majority of potential owners should recognize before they buy the optic. It’s not really a negative attribute, more of an observation, but one that could make potential owners look at other optics. The adjustment control covers are in my opinion a huge issue with the optic and one that quite frankly left me baffled at how this got past the group of Sig Sauer testers.
The housing around the adjustment screw covers is very close, more so on the top of the optic than on the side. This close machining and fitting made it extremely difficult to unscrew the covers to access the adjustment screws. I keep little in the way of fingernails and grasping the raised bar on the top side of the cap proved almost impossible. Since this was a test and evaluation optic I was not going to use my pliers to unscrew the aluminum covers. This would have left the caps covered in teeth marks and scratch its flat black finish for sure. You shouldn’t need pliers to remove turret caps to make adjustments to your optics.
Not All is Lost
Despite the annoyance of removing the adjustment caps and the equally frustrating time adjusting the tension on the quick-detach mounting lever, the optic was very sturdy when mounted and it zeroed very quickly. I had the optic zeroed in under 10 rounds and part of that was operator error and just bad shooting on my part.
The weight of the optic was more noticeable on my short-barreled AR-15 than it was on my Sig Model 556. That most likely is because the Sig Model 556 rifle is already heavy due to its gas piston recoil system and heavy aluminum quad rail.
The controls of the Romeo 7 are as simple as they come, I installed the single AA sized battery just like the picture showed me to and the rest was was handled by the rotary dial located on the back of the optic.
Unlike many other red dots, the Romeo 7’s controls faced me while in the shooting position. In theory, a shooter could make easy adjustments to the intensity of the red dot while not completely removing his eye from the intended target. This was a nice change from many other optics I have reviewed recently, even my favorite, the Trijicon MRO. When looking at the Romeo 7, it appears that the reason this feature exists is that the total overall length of the Romeo 7 is much greater than the AA sized battery so tucking it along the side of the 51 mm body tube makes sense.
Bottom Line Would I Buy It?
After all the shooting, adjusting, and occasional frustration with a few elements of the Sig Sauer Romeo 7, I had to ask myself, would I but this optic? The answer is yes I would if I wanted a slightly larger red dot optic. The frustrations with removing and reinstalling of the adjustment screw covers are annoying but ultimately something you would have to go very infrequently with this type of optic. The same could be said about the tension adjustment for the quick-release mounting system.
The reputation of Sig Sauer, the warranties, and all the other features packed in, like the 60,000-hour-plus run time make this optic a real winner even if the caps aggravate me. I did, after all, put it in my top five list not long ago, and I compiled that list after shooting the Romeo 7 and Romeo 5 side by side and off the same rifles.
This optic will be perfect for shooters with glasses, eyesight issues, or anyone just wanting a little more surface area to look through and still pick up a clear crisp red dot. When you rack and stack the Romeo 7 against other optics it should show you that what Sig provides is quality and affordability combined with a very large objective lens.
What do you think of the Romeo 7? We want to hear from our readers and see what brands and models of optics people are using on their military-style rifles and carbines.