Based on the advanced SIG Sauer Romeo M17 pistol red dot, the new Romeo X series optics have much the same family tree but are designed for more popular optic footprints. 
 

What's the big deal with the Romeo M17?


SIG debuted the closed emitter Romeo M17 – which, as its name would imply, is built from the ground up as a near "bomb-proof" red dot for the military's M17 and M18 Modular Handgun System pistols – earlier this year. Constructed of forged 7075 aluminum with a beryllium copper flexure arm (more on that in a minute) the Romeo M17 has an extremely low deck height so that armorers can reuse standard iron sights, has 15 illumination settings (including three for use with Gen 3+ night vision), beats drop and submersion tests, and, importantly, has an integral loaded chamber gas deflector shield that keeps the MHS from gassing up the lens after 10-15 rounds.

The sight has been spotted in military use, it has been submitted to the Army's Soldier Enhancement Program, it has an NSN number, and SIG tells us a large public safety contract announcement is soon to break on the optic as well. 

 

Romeo M17 pistol red dot
The Romeo M17 is a hoss. This installed example we saw dropped from 10 feet onto concrete at SIG's plant in Oregon earlier this year with nothing but cosmetic damage to the housing. SIG explained to Guns.com that the Romeo M17 has surpassed 100,000 rounds in testing without loss of zero or parts breakage. (All photos except noted: Chris Eger/Guns.com)

 

Part of what makes the Romeo M17 so tough is an innovative beryllium copper flexure arm that replaces springs with a much more robust part – which adds to durability – and helps drop the deck to allow a better co-witness with standard iron sights.

 

Romeo M17 pistol red dot flexure arm
That magical Romeo M17 flexure arm.
Romeo M17 pistol red dot flexure arm
Installed near the base of the Romeo M17, the arm provides a backbone – so to speak – for the sight, cutting down on the number of parts that can fail. 

 

The problem is, the Romeo M17 uses a unique mounting footprint, one that has six leverage points and uses 40 pounds of torque with a single optics plate mounting screw. In short, unless you have an M17 or M18 military or commemorative handgun, you can't mount it. 

That's where the Romeo X comes in. 
 

Meet the Romeo X


To think of the Romeo X in terms of an evolution of SIG's other Romeo series pistol dots – the RomeoZero, Romeo 2, and Romeo 3 – is wrong. The Romeo X shouldn't be looked at a continuation of these so much as a more consumer-facing version of the Romeo M17. This is because the two sights share much the same DNA, including the flexure arm. 

 

The Romeo M17 compared to the Romeo X (Graphic: SIG)
The Romeo M17 compared to the Romeo X (Graphic: SIG)

 

The Romeo X still has the same 15 illumination settings as the Romeo M17, as well as the forged 7075 aluminum housing and low deck. Unlike the "lunchbox" style closed emitter format of the Romeo M17, the Romeo X – at least at launch – is only available in open emitter red-dot versions. However, SIG tells us that a closed emitter Romeo X is tentatively on the schedule as are green dot variants. 

The Romeo X will be available in a Pro variant, which is ideal for the P320 or any pistol that has a Leupold Delta Point Pro footprint, and a Compact variant, which is pitched for the P365 series or any handgun with the Shield RMSc footprint. 

 

The Romeo M17 compared to the Romeo X
An M17 slide with a Romeo M17 mounted at top, with the Romeo X Compact and Romeo X Pro sights under it. 
The Romeo M17 compared to the Romeo X
Both the Romeo M17, left, and the Romeo X use distortion-free glass aspheric lenses, which are better than the standard two-part Mangin lenses used in most other micro red dots. This allows for a sight picture with less distortion or "fisheye" while having zero magnification.
The Romeo X Pro, left, and Compact,
The Romeo X Pro, left, and Compact, both have a 1x24mm window. Both are 1.23 inches wide and 0.94 inches high. The DPP-footprint Romeo X Pro is 1.83 inches long, while the Romeo X Compact is a shorter 1.62 inches. Note the machined anti-reflection grooves on all rear surfaces, a holdover from the Romeo M17, designed to reduce glare. Note the left-side brightness adjustment settings, which scroll through 15 settings including three for NV. The user can also change the reticle by pressing the "down" button for one full second, opting for either a 2 MOA dot or 32 MOA circle, or both. 
The Romeo X Pro, left, and Compact,
Both have a side-opening battery compartment that holds a single CR1632 battery good for 20,000 hours at a medium setting if the sight is constantly on. The Romeo X uses SIG's Motion Activated Illumination (MOTAC) system, which increases battery life by shutting down the sight when not in use, then reactivates it after vibration or movement. 
The Romeo X Pro, left, and Compact,
Both are water resistant to IPX-7 ratings. Both are designed, developed, tested, and fully assembled in the USA.
The Romeo X Pro, left, and Compact,
Note the low deck height for co-witnessing with standard iron sights. The Compact model includes fiber optic vials. 
The Romeo X Pro mounted on a P320.
The Romeo X Pro mounted on a P320.
The Romeo X Pro mounted on a P320.
Note the co-witness. 
Romeo X Compact compared to the company's Romeo Zero Elite
The Romeo X Compact compared to the company's Romeo Zero Elite.  Both have a 1x24 window and a shared RMSc footprint, but the Romeo X is much more robust than the polymer-bodied Romeo Zero Elite.
omeo X Compact on a SIG P365 X Macro Comp
We installed the Romeo X Compact on a SIG P365 X Macro Comp, and it was a snug fit. 
omeo X Compact on a SIG P365 X Macro Comp
The co-witness. 

 

Now the best news. While the price of the Romeo M17 starts at about $800, the Romeo X Pro is $449, while the Romeo X Compact is $399.

revolver barrel loading graphic

Loading