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You can do a lot of things that help you extend the capability of an AR-15 type rifle without losing anything. The LPVO is the current trend and I've seen it used to good effect close, and far. Red dots are quick. Add a magnifier and you're adding range to your dot/reflex sight but now you are adding weight. No matter what you do BUIS are never a bad backup/redundancy.

I've tried both options and prefer the dot/magnifier combo.. Its heavier than my LPVO but it is easier to use. The BUIS are foldable and can be used without doing anything to the (my) dot sight. The magnifier simply folds out of the way. My LPVO set up could be better as my optic needs to be removed to employ my rear BUIS. A better option may be to use 45° off set sights but my LPVO currently has a quick release and so far holds zero. The LPVO is just more work in close.
 

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Pusher of brooms
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My little BO doesn't have irons. I'm not hurrying to change that. A red dot is on top and for what I built it for, it's fine. Short range defense and food gathering.
If need be there's a 3-12x scope sitting there ready to go, sighted in.

I finish the .223, there's a 4-16x waiting to go on top as well as the folding irons.
Why so much glass? We hunt with ours not just leave them in the corner for defense. Antelopes and deer don't just stay within old eye range.

Anymore, out past 50y, I prefer magnification. And unlike when I was younger, the low fixed power units aren't as friendly anymore at distance.

Can't hit what I can't see.

Used to run a 3x Colt scope on an SP-1, long before flat tops, and its simplicity is still something that I like.
 

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The shooting world is going to Low Power Variable Optics (LPVO), right now 1-8x is very common.

The true 1x is a must (not 1.5x) and the 8x is actually not for shooting, it is for identifying your target. If we are talking about self defense you'll want to see that is actually a gun and not a pack of cigarettes in the person's hand even if you dial it back to 1x when firing.
 
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