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Holosun DRS-NV Review: An Affordable Night Vision Sight

Last Updated: March 13, 2024

It was in January 2023 that Holosun stole the spotlight at Shot Show, bringing home nothing else but the Best of Shot Show Award itself. The hype they created lingered throughout the whole year, and nigh is the time when that expectation bubble should burst. Their line of Digital Reflex Night Vision Sights is about to hit the market, which makes now a great moment to take a look at the DRS NV to see whether the hype is well-founded.

Table of Contents

What is a Holosun DRS NV?

The Holosun Digital Reflex Night Vision Sight is a brand-new hybrid sight that is built on the legacy of the AEMS by the same maker. The new version features a whole separate camera on top of the red dot sight and can operate in two modes: regular and night vision. When the flip-down lens cover is lowered, the sight works as a regular red dot. When the lens cover is raised, you can engage the night vision mode. The DRS NV aims to meet the needs of people who want to get a night vision device without emptying their wallets. It won’t replace a full-fledged set of night vision goggles, but if you want to have a device for stationary observation and detection, this guy might do the trick.


Holosun Digital Reflex Night Vision Sight (DRS-NV)


Holosun DRS NV: A Closer Look

First things first, the sight isn’t quite widely available yet. The sight was presented at the Shot Show in 2023 and some lucky content-makers were sent early releases for reviewing in February-March this year. We weren’t among those, yikes, but we do have our memories from the show and the specs are also there. We take a look at something we’re only about to receive, so the things mentioned here are not set in stone.


Interestingly enough, the size of Holosun DRS NV depends on the angle from which you look at it. From the perspective of night vision devices, it’s quite compact. However, when we compare it to other red dots, the DRS TH may appear a bit hefty. It’s not uncomfortably large and can even compare to some other red dots that have no night vision features whatsoever. Since there are two optical systems, there need to be two separate devices, that I understand. Some will call it huge, others won’t, the size is a debatable metric. It won’t impede your shooting experience in any way, and that’s all that matters.

Holosun DRS

Night Vision

It’s somewhat problematic to single out which part of these sights is more prominent. The red dot occupies more than half of its body, but the night vision device is what made these sights the talk of the town. Since the latter is what makes the DRS-NV stand out, I’ll cover it first.  

The thing about night vision sights is that they aren’t particularly comfortable to use on the move (goggles are a much better fit for this). If you expect to mount a device like that and venture off to look for your game pals, you might end up frustrated. The DRS-NV is much more suitable for stationary monitoring. As such, the effective range becomes one of its most crucial features.

Talking about the distance from which the image remains discernible, I’d give it 100-150 yards. It’s twice the effective range of its thermal sibling, which doesn’t necessarily make it good in itself, but 150 yards is a decent distance. Still, there is a difference between being able to see and being able to aim. Once you pass the 100-yard threshold, shooting in darkness, even with a night vision sight, becomes somewhat problematic. The issue becomes less severe if you can arrange some illumination to help you out. You can even extend the effective range to 200 or even 300 yards with some help, but the image quality obviously won’t be as sharp.

Holosun DRS-NV

The sight comes with four brightness settings for nighttime use. You will probably end up using two or three of them, depending on the lighting conditions, but having more is better than having less. Almost always. The same thing goes for the dot and the reticle – you can dim them down or brighten them up, which is quite handy, plain and simple.

The DRS-NV features digital zoom (up to 8x), which is nice, but not necessarily superior. Even at 4x the image becomes uncomfortably grainy, and at 8x, the picture becomes barely discernible. However, interestingly enough, the sight works extremely well with magnifiers. The image remains crisp and clear at the standard 1x magnification paired with a 3x magnifier (I would recommend Eotech G33, but it’s only a few hundred bucks cheaper than the sight itself).

Red Dot

At this point, I want to make sure the red dot isn’t left depreciated, especially considering the fact you will probably use it more than the night vision optic system. Red dot sights are Holosun’s signature product, after all, and there is no reason why the brand’s specialty should be eclipsed by a novelty.

The red dot sight is what you come to expect from Holosun. The dot options are as follows: the traditional red dot itself, the 65 MOA circle and an EOTech style reticle, the circle plus the dot. This set is pretty classic, gets the job done, nothing too fancy and distracting – exactly what I want from a red dot. 

holosun digital reflex sight night vision

There are eight brightness settings to choose from, which also comes in handy. Just as with night vision mode, the image remains crisp when you add a magnifier into the equation. That’s a good thing because the sight is a 1x and the only magnification option is digital zoom, which always sacrifices image quality. The glass has a tiny bit of tint, hardly noticeable and is great in all other respects.

The sight is very tactile. It’s not easy to turn, but it gives you immediate feedback on what you do to it. Rest assured, you won’t miss the click once it gets to it. 

The DRS-NV suffers from the same problem or enjoys the same benefits as the DRS-TH. It sports two separate optical systems, two systems that are not aligned. This can be beneficial if you want to have different zeros for different loads or ammo. In the rest of the cases, this only makes things a bit more complicated. But there is also no other way to do this and keep those systems separate, so I think of it as a necessary evil.

Holosun DRS NV

Additional Features

So, there is a red dot sight and a night vision optical system. Anything else? The answer is yes, quite a bit.

The DRS NV can capture photos and videos and store them right on the device (you have 32GB to fill). I’ve reviewed the DRS TH as well, and I should say that thermal sight boasts higher recording quality. Maybe I’m a bit biased because I was more excited to review the thermal one and everything might have seemed better than it actually was. The quality is still fine, though. You can disable those functions to increase battery life by as much as 20%. I like that trade-off, and that’s probably what I’d go with.  

These sights are capable of a lot of things, and such variability comes at a price. There are as many as five buttons at the top of the device (six with the power button). Considering the fact the sight itself aims to be compact, that doesn’t help it to stay ergonomic. Mastering the buttons will require some time, not to mention they are quite big. If you don gloves, getting what you want from this sight might become a challenge.


Concluding Thoughts

I know a few things about night vision and one of those things is price awareness. To get a device that would give you this level of performance for right under a grand is a ridiculously good deal. Night vision has always been the privilege of the people who can afford to spend a few thousand dollars on their optics, and that’s not really a large group of people. The DRS NV tries to blaze a new trail that can be walked by more people, and that intention alone is very commendable. The sight isn’t perfect by any means, but making one wasn’t Holosun’s aim. Don’t expect miracles – and you will get a tiny one. The Holosun Digital Reflex Night Vision sight is definitely worth a try.

Checkout other Product Reviews by Gritr Sports Team:


The Holosun DRS NV is a state-of-the-art hybrid sight that combines a red dot sight with a separate night vision camera.

While the Holosun DRS NV is compact for a night vision device, it may seem a bit large compared to other red dot sights.

The night vision mode has an effective range of around 100-150 yards, double that of its thermal counterpart.

The night vision mode comes with four brightness settings suitable for nighttime use.

Yes, the Holosun DRS NV offers digital zoom with up to 8x magnification. However, the image quality may become grainy at higher magnifications.

The red dot sight provides a traditional red dot, a 65 MOA circle, and an EOTech style reticle (circle plus dot).

The red dot sight features eight brightness settings.

Yes, the Holosun DRS NV can capture photos and videos which can be stored on the device’s 32GB memory.

The Holosun DRS NV has five buttons (six including the power button) located at the top of the device, which might make it more challenging to navigate.

Timothy Chandler

Timothy Chandler is a long-time outdoor enthusiast and shooting range regular who decided to put his passion into words. Having tried an immeasurable number of firearms during his hunting trips across Texas and several other states, Timothy has accumulated a knowledge base worthy of sharing. The possible blanks in the expertise he compensates with the help of his numerous shooting buddies. Timothy is set on a seemingly impossible mission to try it all in the realm of firearms. Follow him on his never-ending journey through the gun world.

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