TFB Review: Primary Arms SLx 1X MicroPrism Sight with ACSS Cyclops Gen 2 Reticle

Primary Arms is known for making affordable yet durable optics that work. They have set themselves apart from the competition with their ACSS reticle. Well, now they have a new SLx 1X MicroPrism with the ACSS reticle. This new MicroPrism optic is a tiny package that works like a quality red dot. Let’s take a closer look at this interesting optic.

Primary Arms @TFB:

Is A Prism Better Than A Red Dot?

For those of us with astigmatism, an etched reticle is always better than a red dot. Red dots are traditionally laser-based or recently they are LED-based. Unfortunately, both varieties of red dots still result in a starburst-looking dot for those suffering from astigmatism. The SLX 1X MicroPrism is an etched reticle so even when you turn on the red illumination, the reticle remains clean and crisp.

The reticle is another boon to a prismatic optic. You can etch any reticle you want. This is more difficult for an LED or laser-based red dot. Especially if your reticle has fine detail. Some claim prismatic optics have a better light transmission than other optics. This is due to the use of prisms and the short overall length of the optic. Oh and let’s not forget the biggest advantage to an etched reticle – no need for power. While the SLx 1X does have reticle illumination, it does not need it. The sight will continue to function even without a battery. Now granted the reticle will not do well at night and that is why there is illumination, or you throw enough light downrange to create contrast with your target and the etched reticle.

In the past, prismatic optics did not allow the use of magnifiers or backup irons but the new Primary Arms SLX 1X MicroPrism can.

The SLx® 1x MicroPrism is an all-new advanced optical system designed from the ground up in an ultra-compact housing, allowing use of backup iron sights and magnifiers. The 1x MicroPrism is part of our SLx optics line. SLx optics built our reputation for innovation, reliability, and value. All SLx optics undergo rigorous field-testing during development to best serve you in any environment. In this case, we put the optic through over 7,000 rounds of .308 through a SCAR 17s.

Photo by Primary Arms


  • ACSS Cyclops Gen II reticle
  • About half the size of our Compact 1x Prism and over 20% lighter
  • 13 Illumination settings including Night Vision and true Daylight Bright
  • 3 Night Vision Settings:  Low, Med & Flood
  • AutoLive motion-sensing on/off battery saving technology
  • 29,000 Hour battery life at medium setting
  • Includes 8 Mounting Height Options (incl. Absolute Cowitness & Lower 1/3 heights, see next page for details)
  • Length: 2.48”  Weight: 7.6 oz with height riser (only 5.5 oz without riser)
  • Etched Reticle, perfect answer for astigmatism and works without illumination
  • Diopter for precision reticle clarity
  • Usable Eye Relief Range:  2” to 6” with 3.6” for optimum Field of View
  • Wide Field of View (76.5 ft @ 100 yds), excellent for CQB situations
  • 120 MOA W/E Adjustments
  • Fully Multi-Coated optics
  • IP67 Waterproof, nitrogen purged for fog resistance, and dust proof
  • Uses (1) CR2032 Battery (Included)
  • Lens Covers also included
  • Backed by Primary Arms Lifetime Warranty

Mounting The SLx 1X MicroPrism

The SLX 1X  comes with a variety of spacers for any height you desire.

Photo by Primary Arms

Photo by Primary Arms

I am not sure why but Primary Arms included cantilever risers that position the SLx 1X further back. The tallest setup will clear most rear iron sights on an AR platform.

Surprisingly, the objective lens is not as big as the housing.

Below is the SLx 1X MicroPrism in its tallest configuration. While it clears the rear sight of my Daewoo DR200, this setup does looks a bit odd. I rather have a straight riser, I do not see the need to have the cantilever at all other than the help bring the SLx 1X Cyclops Gen 2 closer to the shooter’s eye.

This might be partially due to this effect I noticed with the SLx 1X. If your eye is close to the ocular side of the optic, everything is fine.

However, if you position the SLx 1X further away from your eye you can see three shadows encroach into the field of view.

The SLx 1X MicroPrism foot print is similar to that of a Trijicon ACOG. It can fit the carry handle if you use the most rearward mounting position.

If you try to slide the SLx 1X further back to use the other mounting holes in the optic, the housing gets in the way and slides up the ramped edges of the carry handle.

I decided to mount the SLx 1X on my recently acquired Zastava M90. It is chambered in 5.56 and I needed a clear optic for it. I loathe shooting with irons. RS Regulate sent me their Yugo optic rail and compatible top rail to fit the SLx 1X.

Perfection. SLx 1X mounted in Zastava M90

How Does The SLx 1X Look To Shoot?

Other than the weird three sided shadowing, the SLx 1X is clear and crisp. I did find myself wanting more magnification when shooting further distances like 200+ yards. But I managed with the ACSS reticle.

Photo by Primary Arms

Target is 200 yards away.

Target below is 100 yards away.

Below is an explanation of how to use the ACSS reticle in the SLx 1X Cyclops Gen2.

Photo by Primary Arms

Photo by Primary Arms

Final Thoughts On Primary Arms SLx 1X MicroPrism Sight

For $249.99 you are getting a great optic for a decent price. The reticle works well and most of all it is crisp and clear for my eyes. It is powered by just a 2032 lithium battery and has a battery life of 29,000 hours. The only critique I have for this optic is the 1 MOA increment adjustments for elevation and windage. I wish they had went with 1/2 or even 1/4 MOA adjustments. While this is not a precision optic, there are plenty of red dots that have sub-MOA adjustments. Why can’t this?

I can overlook this minor issue with what I have seen and how well this optic works. It is a perfect optic for my Zastava M90 but I could see it working well for a small compact PDW chambered in a rifle caliber. For more information go to the Primary Arms website.

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