December 29, 2021
Springfield Armory seems to have its finger on the pulse of the shooting public. The company’s Hellcat, XD series and, of course, its 1911 handguns were all runaway successes long before the pandemic buying spree made any functional firearm an immediate best-seller. Springfield’s understanding of its customers’ wants and needs has helped shaped the company’s expansive product line, and right now handgun owners want red-dot-equipped pistols.
The company answered the cry for more red-dot pistols by adding additional optics-ready versions of its popular semiautos. But Springfield took things a step further. The company no longer just makes red dot-ready guns; it now makes red-dot optics, too. Meet the Springfield Hex.
There are currently two members in the Hex family. The compact, lightweight Wasp is designed for concealed carry and weighs just 0.7 ounce while the larger Hex Dragonfly is designed for use on full-size handguns, shotguns, and rifles. Both optics feature 3.5-m.o.a. red dots and come with bodies machined from 6061 T6 hardcoat anodized aluminum, and both the Wasp and Dragonfly run on widely available CR2032 batteries.
Suggested retail price for the Wasp is $299, while the Dragonfly carries a price tag of $249.
The Hex Dragonfly model I tested weighed in at 1.2 ounces and measured just 1.9 inches long and 1.14 inches wide. Its footprint is what the company calls “Springfield standard,” which is the same as the Burris FastFire and Vortex Venom, and that means the Dragonfly fits bases and accessories designed for those optics. The smaller Wasp utilizes the “Springfield micro” footprint, which is the same as the Shield RMSc.
Both the Wasp and Dragonfly Hex optics have an IPX7 rating, which means they can withstand being submerged in water up to a meter for 30 minutes.
“Hex optics, developed by Springfield Armory, was created to offer superior optical support for your firearms,” says Mike Humphries, media relations manager for Springfield Armory. “Built to exacting specifications from premium materials, the Wasp and the Dragonfly—both backed by a lifetime warranty—offer you exceptional optics for your chosen optics-ready firearm.”
Springfield Armory sent the Hex Dragonfly mounted on its XD-M Elite 4.5 OSP (Optically Sighted Pistol) threaded 9mm handgun for range testing, and that optic/handgun combination makes a formidable self-defense weapon. The XD-M Elite OSP comes with suppressor-height black sights that are dovetailed into the slide and co-witness with the Hex Dragonfly optic.
Pressing the Dragonfly’s side-mounted power button activates the optic. Once you’ve installed the battery, you can leave this red dot on. The Dragonfly switches off after 16 hours of inactivity to save battery life, and a single CR2032 battery lasts up to 100,000 hours or three years.
Pressing the button toggles through the settings from brightest to dimmest, and once you reach the dimmest setting, the next press of the button toggles back to the brightest. Those eight brightness settings cover every imaginable light conditions from bright, cloudless midday sun in areas with lots of reflective surfaces to near total darkness. If you want to power down the Hex Dragonfly, simply press and hold the power button for three seconds.
Both the Hex Dragonfly and Wasp red-dot optics feature shrouds that extend beyond the front of the optic and serve to protect the lens from accidental scrapes and bumps. It also allows for one-handed racking of the pistol in case of an emergency.
Speaking of racking the slide, the serrations on the side of the optic are designed to provide added grip when manipulating a semiautomatic’s slide. Between the serrations on the optic and the XD-M’s wide, angular slide serrations I found that overhand slide drops weren’t an issue.
At 1.14 inches wide the Dragonfly is only slightly wider than the XD-M’s slide. Both the rear portion of the Dragonfly and the rear surface of the iron sights feature serrations to reduce glare. The ample viewing window (0.92x0.70 inch) makes it easy to find the dot, and the housing around the viewing window is narrow enough so it doesn’t negatively impact situational awareness.
The angled top of the lens housing not only offers a larger viewing area, but also the angular design reduces the effects on an impact to the top of the lens housing that could damage the lens.
On the range I found the Hex Dragonfly’s design to be well- thought-out. Placing the power button on the side of the unit makes it easy to access, and the side serrations do offer a bit of extra purchase when operating the pistol. Point of impact adjustments are done on the upper portion of the sight body (elevation) and on the right side (windage) of the optic.
Each click moves point of impact one m.o.a., and with 160 m.o.a. of adjustment travel you should be able to get on target quickly. “U” and “R” marks on the elevation and windage, respectively, dials make it easy to make corrections, and the dials can be adjusted using the rim of a 9mm cartridge.
Accuracy with red-dot optics tends to be noticeably better than with traditional iron sights, and such was the case with the Springfield. The smallest five-shot group of the day measured 1.35 inches, and average accuracy hovered between two and three inches.
I removed the optics and fired a handful of test groups with the iron sights, and while they are effective—especially for shooting in bright sun—I couldn’t match the accuracy achieved with the optic. Point of impact adjustments were true and accurate.
At $249 the Hex Dragonfly is a bargain. It’s $100 cheaper than a Vortex Venom red dot and on par with Burris’s FastFire 3, and the Hex’s many innovative features and shooter-friendly design make it a great addition to your optics-ready firearm.
Springfield Armory Hex Dragonfly Sight
- Type: Reflex Red Dot
- Dot Size: 3.5 MOA
- Body/Lens: 6061 T6 hardcoat anodized aluminum; glass
- Length/Width: 1.9/1.14 in.
- Weight: 1.2 oz.
- Adjustment: 1 MOA
- Adjustment Range: 160 MOA
- Battery: CR2032, 100,000-hour runtime
- Brightness Control: manual, 8 settings
- Footprint: Springfield standard; same as Vortex Venom and Burris FastFire
- Warranty: Lifetime
- Price: $249
- Contact: Springfield Armory, Springfield-Armory.com