Vortex Optics recently released their AMG UH-1 Gen II holographic sight and I got lucky enough to be the first to get my hands on it. This optic is different than the Gen I in a few ways, including the addition of four-night vision compatible brightnesses and the elimination of the micro USB charging port. It has robust aluminum construction, QD lever-lock system, and a waterproof rating of IPX8, meaning that it can be submerged in water deeper than 3 feet. Everything about the AMG UH-1 Gen II screams durability, repeatability, and dependability.
Before we get too far into the review, I’ll pause now to mention that this sight is different from a red dot optic, which typically uses an LED to reflect a transmitted dot off the front lens back into the eye, in that it is a holographic sight which uses a laser and mirror to project a hologram without using the front glass of the optic.
About the AMG UH-1 Gen II
The Vortex AMG UH-1 Gen II (“Huey Gen II” from here on out) is big. Very big, actually. This sight is over 3.9″ long, 2.65″ high, and 11 ounces in weight. For certain applications, this may be a deal-breaker. But Vortex chose to forego a petite design in order to build an incredibly tough, duty purposed optic that can withstand all the abuse that such an application undoubtedly entails. Because all of the sensitive internals are housed in the bottom portion of the optic, the need for a secondary shroud is eliminated, allowing the large viewing window and thin outer shroud to present an incredibly open sight picture when shooting with both eyes open.
The Huey Gen II uses the EBR-CQB reticle, which can be seen below. I really like this reticle because of the versatility that it has to offer. The outer ring helps with fast superposition on targets while the center dot provides precision at your chosen zero distance, with the chevron at the bottom being a precise point of aim from about 10 yards and in. There are many different opinions on whether red-dot or holographic optics are crisper, but I’ve found that with my astigmatism, they all look almost equally blurry. The Huey Gen II appeared a bit fuzzy, but not “starburst” to me, so this is much better than most in my case. Again, this will vary WIDELY person to person, and the Huey Gen II looked fairly crisp to me when compared to other red-dots or holographics that I have used.
There are 15 total brightness settings, including the 4 NV settings that I mentioned before. These settings range from very dim to daylight bright and can be selected using the + or – buttons on the back of the optic while the night vision settings are on the separate “NV” button. These are the only buttons on the Huey Gen II, but they also allow you to turn on/off the reticle as well as toggle the power saving mode which automatically shuts the optic off after 14 hours of no use. All of this is powered by a CR123A battery which allows approximately 1500 hours of use (~ 2 months if not in power saver mode).
Very simple to use, the only other operations on the Huey Gen II are the elevation and windage dials, the battery cap, and the QD locking lever on the base. The elevation and windage dials can be adjusted using a coin or other tool, providing 1/2 MOA adjustments per click. The QD lever on the side requires moderate thumb pressure to latch and can be adjusted to fit any Picatinny/Weaver rail. To unlock, simply press the release in and lift the lever.
- mount type: Weaver/Picatinny
- 1x magnification
- bright red reticle
- EBR-CQB 1 MOA dot reticle
- 11 daylight brightness settings & 4 night vision settings
- unlimited eye relief (benefit of holographic)
- 1/2 MOA adjustment graduation
- 100 MOA max adjustment (elevation & Windage)
- parallax free
- IPX8 waterproof rating
- QD mount
- ~1500 hour battery life
- 3.9″ length
- 11.0 oz
- MSRP $799.99
Shooting the AMG UH-1 Gen II
I mounted up the Huey Gen II on a Daniel Defense DDM4 PDW in 300 blackout and headed to the range. The repeatability of this system turned out to be phenomenal. Not only can I absolute co-witness with my iron sights to visually inspect zero, but I fired several different groups between removing and re-installing the optic and I never noticed a POI shift between groups while at the range. The narrow shroud and huge viewing window provided an enormous field of view, almost completely fading out the borders when shooting with both eyes open.
I really enjoyed my time with Vortex’s AMG UH-1 Gen II holographic sight. It proved to be extremely tough, waterproof, accurately return to zero, and I’ve had it turned on since I received it over 2 months ago and it is still running strong. If you are in search of a duty built optic, one that can truly be depended on, The Huey Gen II should definitely be considered for your pick. I realize that it may not fit everyone’s application because of the sheer size of it and/or the price, but there is a reason that other products and options exist. I realize that the most zealous commenters are very budget-oriented, so I’ll point this out specifically for you: this is certainly a premium product at a premium price, but you will be able to find these for sale on the market discounted over $300… dropping it into the more attainable price range of $500.