Selecting a Night Vision Rifle Scope: Things to Consider
– Generation of the Model
– Clip-On Systems
– Lines per Millimeter in Resolution (lp/mm)
– Infrared Illuminator
– Range and Zoom
Generation of the Model:
Night vision can be found in a variety of generations – Digital, Generation 1 (Gen 1), Generation 2 (Gen 2), Generation 3 (Gen 3), and White Phosphor (WPT). The bottom line is, the greater the generation, the greater the picture quality. Let us consider a much more in-depth look. Listed below are the best features and cost ranges within every generation.
Digital – Scopes which you’ll use in both night or day situations. Nearly all night vision scopes shouldn’t be exposed to vibrant light sources including daylight simply because it will damage the intensifier tube (IIT). Most Gen 2 and Gen 3 products come with a turn off feature to preemptively combat and stop any damages. Digital rifle scopes have a white and black contrast. This can help images stick out better and therefore are much like the white phosphor scopes. This generation generally costs between $500 to $1,800 and also have an array of effective viewing distances with respect to the individual device. If you possess the choice to choose digital or Gen 1. I’d choose digital since it provides a higher contrasted image for night hunting unless you have an additional or after-market IR Illuminator. These models will often have 1,500 to 2,500 hour tube lifespan.
Gen 1 and Gen 1 + – These scopes provide affordability. If you’re starting ou, this generation will allow you to view about 110 yards of effective shot and sight picture. You are able to sight in a number of these models throughout the daytime because the lens cap cover remains on – most models such as the ATN MK 410 and Armasight Orion 5x possess a hole within the lens cap for this function. These usually vary in cost vary from $300 to $1,000 and 1,500 hour tube existence. These models are standard and designed to get you started. They well have a lesser quality picture than higher generations and are likely to have more of a “fish eye” lens effect when compared to other generations.
Gen 2 and Gen 2+ – Gen 2 scopes are ideal for producing higher quality resolution. They are far better than Gen 1 and many digital night vision riflescopes. These provide great picture quality and permit customers to simply shoot over 199 yards with quarter moonlight. These are ideal for people who mean business and wish to make their shots count even at longer distances. Cost range varies between $1,000 to $2,999 with an average viewing distance of 199 to 250 yards at optimal conditions (with moonlight or starlight). 5,000 hour image intensifier tube existence.
Gen 3 and Gen 3+ – Gen 3 scopes would be the second best scopes you can purchase. These scopes possess a 10,000 hour image intensifier tube existence. They will allow you to see the moonlight and starlight without the use of the IR Illuminator (as long as these light sources are available). They are designed for serious night hunters, military, and police force personnel. Gen 3 has the greatest image resolution. Cost range differs from $3,000 – $5,000+.
White Phosphor (WPT) – White phosphor scopes is technically not a generation, considering it possesses great contrast and sharp images, it seems like it ought to be. WPT can be found in both Gen 2 and Gen 3 night Vision Products. The Armasight generally describes WPT models as “Ghost” or “Quicksilver” within their product game titles. If you see these names in Armasight Models at this point you now understand what they mean! WPT has a white and black contrast in comparison to the traditional green night vision background. It is just a matter of preference to the viewer.
Clip-On Night Vision Systems offer wonderful benefits and can convert your overall daytime scope into a night vision rifle scope. These models simply “clip-on” towards the front objective lens of the scope and instantly transforms it right into a night hunting machine! These clip on systems can be found in Digital, Gen 2, and Gen 3 night vision. Personally, I am partial to clip on systems because they fit easily in the users hands, you do not even have to re-zero your daytime optic, and can rapidly attach in your scope in a moments notice. They’re very functional and readily available for all distances – Armasight provides the Small (short range), MR (medium range), and LR (longe range) systems.
Lines per Millimeter Resolution (lp/mm):
Sounds confusing, however, it is not. The best way to describe Lines Per Millimeter is similar to comparing a 1080 pixel video versus 640×480 pixel. The greater the lines per millimeter, the greater the picture quality you will notice inside your scope.
Infrared Illuminator (IR) gives your night vision unit the utmost performance, quality, and distance. In night hunting for coyotes you should want to get the most distance and image clarity from your unit, whichever generation you choose. Nocturnal animals typically have excellent hearing and smell which means you need to be ready to get the shot off beyond of 100 yards. Pay attention to the wavelength (measured in nanometers) in your infrared illuminator. I suggest getting an additional IR of 850nm or higher to push your Gen 1 scopes past 100 yards. Higher nanometer wavelengths are not necessarily better for lower generations like Gen 1 units and some IR’s only work with digital night vision so keep this in mind. Since night vision units operate according to star and moonlight, if you have significant cloud cover or pitch-black situations, the IR becomes the heartbeat of the unit. Your scope is only able to be as good as your IR in completely dark situations. A great top quality IR can boost the Gen 1 unit’s picture quality leaps and bounds. Don’t sell yourself short, if desire a better display quality change your IR rather than having to pay more up front for any greater Generation.
Range and Zoom:
If you want shooting capabilities over 199 yards, you typically want a minimum of a 50mm to 60mm large objective focal lens or a longe range (LR) Clip-On System. The only issue to be pointed out here, is that individuals have a tendency to ignore zoom and focal lens dimensions and only pay attention to resolution. Make certain you have an appropriately sized front objective lens and overall magnification of the unit when thinking about shooting at these longer ranges.