OPTIC OF THE WEEK: Mark AR MOD 1 1.5-4x20mm


The Leupold MK AR 1x4x is a pretty nifty optic. With the increase in popularity of the variable power carbine optic and the increase in price that comes along with that popularity. The 1x-4x is no frills alternative that is still handy and versatile without the $1,800+ price.

opitc in a larue SPR mount on Colt 901

The scope has a 1 inch tube which is still the most common for most end users. It’s rapidly becoming passe, but it keeps the price down and few of the targeted market does not need a 30MM tube.

The adjustment turrets are Mils. instead of the MOA clicks. In addition, the elevation has markings to of a BDC to match common rounds used. Most come with the BDC for 55 grain M193 loads but you can order different ones from Leupold and swap them out. Not just in 5.56MM but also 309/7.62. The turrets have set screws that all you to reset the turret to 0 once you have it…zeroed. Which I clearly have not done yet.

The left side has the battery cap and control for the Firedot.

The reticle is a crosshair with a larger outer ring for use on lower power. The firedot lights up in the center of the crosshairs.

The reticle has carious marks for holdover etc. Armlist shows a diagram showing holds for M855 and a 175gr math load for .308. I have tried it and can confirm it is accurate.

best I could do

The power ring could be a little bigger, It is hard to grab and adjust in a hurry or with gloves.

The MK AR1-4x is usually seen on 556 carbines or rifles. The 1.5x with dot is meant to make it work as a RDS but it just can’t. We have not hit the point where we can have a true RDS then Variable magnification both in one optic yet. I do like this optic for “battle carbine” use. The combination works as a some what DMR.


  1. For the cost and size their Mark AR optics are good. I’ve had a couple of their 3x9s and have no complaints. I’m not a fan of AO scopes so much so (always felt awkward to adjust, personal preference) haven’t tried their others.
    For this application I think I’d prefer a capped turret however. They had a 1×5 version for a buck or so more but I don’t recall if it was illuminated.

  2. Good review Shawn. I have been eyeballing one of these for range use. The range I typically have access to is just 100 yards so spending money on high end optic for long distance is kind of pointless at the moment. I am wanting to shoot a lot at this local range this next year with the various Colt rifles that I have a good 1-4 optic will help me test these rifles with my challenged eyesight.


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