Digital Night Vision, Intensifier Tube, and Thermal Scope Comparison

Generally Speaking

We think Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on is a great choice but here is some general information to think about when deciding on a night vision product.

Night Vision Clip-on - Digital Crosshairs
Night Vision Clip-on – Digital Crosshairs

It don’t have to cost thousands of dollars to kill a few hogs in the dark!

About Night Hunting-

  • All dedicated night vision and thermal scopes will cause temporary night blindness after looking through them in the dark. Your eye pupils will shrink from the light in the scope and will take a few seconds to re-open and adjust to the darkness. Only exception are Digital Crosshairs and NiteSite products that use LCD displays.
  • It is very hard to judge distance when you are in the dark and your only field of view is through your night vision device.
  • No night vision scope is as clear as a high quality day vision scope.  It is the best of both world using a clip-on.
  • Check with your night vision manufacturer about maximum caliber weapons they support.

Digital Night Vision

Pros Cons
Gen 2 or better equivalent at lower Cost. More natural image, easier to identify target than thermal IR reflects off leave & brush affecting visibility
Use Day or Night Smoke and fog decrease visibility
Tougher, more rugged Requires IR illuminator for optimal use
Cost less than thermal and Intensifier tube technology IR illuminator has faint glow that may give your position away
Clear target identification at 50 to 150+  yards Optics do not compare with high quality day scopes
Many have video output and/or record capabilities Some have programmable features may not be practical in fast pace hunting situation
Fast startup time, sometime instant on Camouflage is often still effective.
Can see through windows
Better visibility in rain than thermal
High contrast black and white night vision image
CMOS night vision sensors do not have limited life span like intensifier tubes and thermal

 

Intensifier Tube (I2) Night Vision

Pros Cons
More natural image, easier to identify target than thermal Fog, smoke and dust obscures the image
Gen 3 on has longer range than most digital night vision Larger/Heavier
Cheaper than thermal optics Worthless during the day or in lighted rooms
Benefits from IR illuminator but Gen 2-4 intensify light without IR Camouflage is often still effective.
Sensitive can be damaged if exposed to bright light
Bright lights and fire stacks will cause them to shut off for protections
Limited lifespan
More expensive than digital night vision
Cannot handle large caliber weapons
 Optics do not compare with high quality day scopes

 

Thermal Night Vision

The major difference with thermal-IR is that thermal-IR is emitted by an object instead of reflected off it. No light source is required with thermal.

Pros Cons
See in any lighting conditions – Day and Night Nearly impossible to positively ID person except with most expensive equipment
See through smoke/fog/dust/sand Image requires some training to interpret
See through leaves, brush and thin materials Hot objects like rocks and hot building in urban areas will wash out human and animal heat signatures
Track residual heat (handprints, footprints) Long startup/warm up time
Works in absolute darkness Thermal optics cannot see through windows
Give off no light, will not give your position away Extreme cold can affect the quality of a thermal image
Long range target acquisition Generally more expensive
Many have video out capabilities Larger and heavier
Fast target acquisition Does not work in rain, misty, very humid conditions
Durable solid state technology Optics do not compare with high quality day scopes

Closing thoughts

To some extent, buying night vision is like buying a car.  There are some really good choices out there and a few lemons.  One thing to remember, you can’t see in the dark so if you plan to move around stalking none of these will help you get around.

Digital Crosshairs night vision clip-on has an LCD display that give off just enough light that you can see where you are stepping, but not so much as to alert the animals you are hunting.

Check out our video at: https://youtu.be/Ayu8AYZApJQ

IR Illuminator Batteries Can End Your Hunt

 

Digital IR night vision scopes are getting very affordable.  With a good IR illuminator, hunters are seeing 100 to over 200+ yards in the dark.  But “Digital”  means electric!  One detail that can ruin your hunting weekend is getting poor quality batteries or heading out with under charged batteries.

Good IR illuminators usually runs on rechargable 18650 lithium-ion batteries.  As your batteries drain in voltage, your illuminator gradually gets dimmer and dimmer.  Remember, the human eye can not see the infra red light from your illuminator so except for the performance of your night vision scope, you have no indication that the brightness of the illuminator is decreasing.  A battery with a low mAh rating when charged will start off bright, but the voltage will drain faster than good batteries.  Get setup and then 20 minutes or less into your hunt you start wondering why your system is not working as well as you expected it to.  Digital IR night vision and I2 (intensifier tube) night vision benefits from the IR illuminator light. When the IR dims, your system dims.  I stress this point.  It would be better if the illuminator just shut off but it doesn’t.  A hunter would know its time for another battery if it just shut off.

The 18650 lithium-ion batteries sold today are labeled from about 2100 mAh (milliamp hours capacity)  all the way up to over 9000 mAh.  So if you order the 9000 mAh batteries from China on Ebay you should be ok, right?  That is what I thought but after doing some research I discovered that 18650 lithium-ion batteries can not physically be made to go that high.   The offshore manufacturers are actually selling a lie.   They just lie about the mAh rating for marketing purposes.  After all, how many people know that much about battery technology except electrical engineers.

XTAR VC2 battery charger

With the average battery charger you don’t know the real mAh rating of your batteries or the charge level.  Don’t risk your hunting trip, get something like the XTAR VC2 USB LCD Screen Battery Charger Capacity Tester.  It has an LCD display that show the batteries voltage and mAh level so you know for sure and don’t have to risk bad batteries messing up a great hunting weekend.

Get good batteries and a good battery charger/tester.  That way, a $2.00 battery won’t mess up a priceless hunting opportunity.

Order the XTAR VC2 Tester/Charger at Digitalcrosshairs.net

Related info:

How to tell a fake 18650 battery:

http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-know-a-fake-18650-battery/

Review of 18650 Batteries:

https://mycooloutdoorstuff.com/which-18650-battery-is-your-best-choice-the-buying-guide-and-recommends/

 

 

 

Digital Crosshairs 1000 – Why not at Bass Pro Shops

Hog hunt in Washington County Ga. with Grunter Hunters

We get asked often why Digital Crosshairs 1000 is not sold at Bass Pro Shops, Cabelas, or other big box retailers.  Here’s the reason.

If we sold at big box retailers they would want a 40% or greater discount from us which would result in a higher cost to you.

Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on mounted on Nikon P223 3-9x40 scope
Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on mounted on Nikon P223 3-9×40 scope

Ever wonder why these stores have such a liberal return policy?  When you return something they just send it back to the manufacturer and don’t pay for it.  It mean nothing to the retailers bottom line but for a small manufacturer it really hurts.  We all know people who buy from Walmart, use it for a while and then take it back.  We have a return policy that let’s you try our product on your scope to see how it works, but this is just for a limited period of time after you receive it.

Those “Black Friday” sales you love are not just supported by the store, the manufacturer has to chip in also.  We rather give you a fair price all year than boost our price so we can reduce it seasonally.  These sales are often only possible because of very low cost offshore manufacturing.

Speaking of being a small U.S.A. based manufacturer, most of these big retailer want their suppliers to lower the cost/price as low as possible which means manufacturing offshore, probably China.  Digital Crosshairs is made by Digital FOV, LLC which is a U.S.A. based company and we plan to stay that way as long as possible.  As long as we don’t have to give half our profit to Walmart or another retailer, we can stay U.S.A. based.

So if you don’t see us at Bass Pro Shops, Cabelas, The Night Vision Guys, or Optics Planet this is why.  We are small and trying to give you the best price and service on a quality product.

Digital FOV, LLC is a small company in Stone Mountain, Georgia and we are alright with that.  Call us up  and say hello or ask about our night vision products.  Guarantee you will speak to a real person every time.

 

New Digital Crosshairs 1000R Night Vision Clip-on with built in DVR

Digital FOV, LLC just release a new version of Digital Crosshairs 1000 IR night vision clip-on that includes a built in DVR recorder that also plays back right on the rail mounted display.  It is the only night vision clip-on that lets you take the night vision shot and then play it back right on the rail mounted display.

Priced at just $750 but compare to units that cost thousands more.

www.digitalcrosshairs.net or call 404-590-6513

Digital Crosshairs 1000R

Digital Crosshairs 1000 DVRPro

Learn more at www.digitalcrosshairs.net or call 404-590-5613

microphone for recording sound

This system has a built-in microphone for recording the sound of your hunt as well as video. Now your friends can see and hear the shot.

Night Vision Hogs at 150 yrds using Digital Crosshairs 1000

Digital Crosshairs 1000 IR night vision IR clip-on uses the latest high definition IR night vision digital technology to give you results like this for only $600.

Night Vision - Digital Crosshairs 1000 on Savage
Night Vision Digital Crosshairs 1000 on Savage

It clips on to any scope and turns it into a night vision scope with visibility often beyond 150 yrd.

Un-like mid-range and lower cost expensive thermal, you can clearly identify game.  Unlike Gen 2+ use it in the daylight too. Digital is the future!

Learn more about Digital Crosshairs 1000 at www.digitalcrosshairs.net or call 404-590-6513.

This video was shot using Digital Crosshairs 1000 at Owens Farm Hunting Preserve in South Georgia.

 

FAQ Digital Crosshairs 1000 Night Vision

FAQ

Recently we got some good questions from a prospective customer in South Carolina regarding Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on that we felt are worth sharing.

  1. Will it work on my Nikon Buckmaster 2 scope that is 4x12x40 for all the zoom ranges?

Answer:  1

I should work fine with your Buckmaster.   It will work on the low magnification of 4 – 5.  It may work with the higher magnifications but it probably will not.  On some scopes brands it does, some it does not

It will adjust for all magnifications on scopes that have AO (adjustable objective).

When using night vision on your scope, un-like in the day light when you can scan with your eyes and then target in with the scope, the only thing you are going to see is your scope’s field of view at night.  The higher the magnification, the narrower your field of view.  You will probably want to use the lowest magnification to get the widest field of view.

  1. We are concerned that the LCD screen will light us our faces and make then visible to deer when we are in our stands. Is this a problem? Can the screen be located below the gun to hide the light from view better? Is the cable long enough to move it down below gun while siting in a tower stand?

Answer : 2

The screen is easily adjustable for brightness and contract, you can dim it.  We also ship a red screen protector with your kit which some hunter like to use to turn the glow from white light to red light.   Also, your face will be about an arm’s length from the display when mounted on your gun.

The screen is held in our proprietary mount by a thumb screw that you can loosen to detach the screen.  It has 16” of cable in the wiring/battery pouch designed to allow you to locate the screen away from your gun.  We can also sell you an extension or you can purchase a standard 4 pole extension cable.

  1. How long does the battery last? How long to recharge battery?

Anwer: 3

The battery will last about 6 hours on a full charge.  It takes 5 to 6 hours to charge.  The battery is removable so you can purchase spare batteries from us for just $40.  It is a re-chargeable lithium battery and we provide a charger for it.

The illuminator runs on one 18650 lithium battery.  We provide two with the kit and the charger.  These batteries will run about two hours.   You can purchase them on the internet for $3 to $20 each.  The better ones will run up to 5 hour on a charge I am told by some customers.  You can also add a pressure switch to your illuminator so it is not on all the time.   Another note from experience, if it is below 40 degrees out, keep your batteries in your pocket to stay warm.  I was in a stand one night for hours and it was 28 degrees out with my batteries on the floor.  Guess what happened, they all went dead.

  1. Can we get an extended warranty past 1 year?

I can give you an extended 2 year warranty on the illuminator, LCD,  camera clip-on and wiring harness.  We do not give a warranty on the batteries because people can miss-manage them.  The LCD, like your phone, is not warrantied for water damage or abuse.    A replacement battery is $40 and a replacement screen is $50 for customers.  Our goal is not to make money on repairs, it is to keep you in the woods hunting!

 

  1. Can we get a discount for buying say 4 or 5 at once?

Answer: 5

Yes.  $550 each

 

  1. How long does it take to mount the system on a rifle? We are thinking about taking it with us and mounting it in the field as it gets dark.

Answer: 6

Once you attach the picatinny rail adapter to your scope, it takes less than 60 seconds,  really.

What I would do is mount the battery pouch to the scope or stock of your gun ahead of time.  This attaches with Velcro and that sound you may not want to chance deer hearing.

When it gets dark, attach the clip-on to the eye piece and mount the screen and illuminator, then just plug them in.

7.  Can you get extra batteries

Yes, the battery just slips into the power pouch.  You can disconnect it and replace it with a fresh battery at any time.

8.  Can I use this system during the day?

Yes this system can be used day or night.  It switches to night vision automatically and sun light does not bother it at all.  The night vision is black and white.  Day vision with the DC1000 works well however the colors are not realistic.  With our Sony based system you get excelent color during the day and black and white night vision.

See us on Facebook

Learn more at http://www.digitalcrosshairs.net

Would you trade a Leupold for Night Vision?

Night vision view of hog using Digital Crosshairs
Night vision view of hog using Digital Crosshairs

Night vision hunting is the rage right now and a lot of fun.  But would you trade a great Leupold or Nikon scope for a night vision scope?

Get the best of both worlds with Digital Crosshairs night vision clip-onhttp://www.digitalcrosshairs.net

Night vision scopes are great for hog and coyote hunting in the dark of night.  Something you can not do with a standard day vision scope.  But great scope manufacturers that produce high quality optics are in a class of there own, way better than any night vision device.

If you want the best in day vision scope optics and you also want to hunt at night you choice is clearly a night vision clip-on that will convert your quality optics into a night vision scope on evenings you want to hunt in the dark.

Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on mounted on Savage 223
Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on mounted on Savage 223

Digital Crosshairs 1000 is a night vision clip-on that attaches to the eye piece of your scope, taking advantage of your scope’s optics while capturing the scope’s field of view in total darkness using digital IR night vision.

This low cost clip-on for just $600 attaches to any scope in less than a minute and without re-zeroing, let’s you enjoy night hunting with the same scope you depend on and love for day shooting.

www.digitalcrosshairs.net or call 404-590-6513

IR Digital Night Vision

Night vision technology is going digital fast.  Look at all the major vendors and they all have a digital product offering.  IR (infrared red) digital night vision uses a circuit board camera that is very sensitive to visible and IR light.   This alone is why prices are falling and once you go digital IR, you will never go back.

This technology is in an early growth state and is making advances in light sensitivity and power every few months.  In our opinion digital devices are equal in quality to Gen2+ at a fraction of the cost.  The new starlight cameras are coming and will one day be a standard which is hundreds of times more sensitive to light than typical consumer market IRs.

insertpic_ecc6

IR digital night vision camera boards use the infared light band waves that are invisible to human and animal eyes.  But IR sensitive night vision camera technology can also utilize visible light band waves as well.

For example, IR night vision scopes can see around a distant area at night taking advantage of an outside light that is on.  You can point it at an area with a bright street light with no damage, in fact your view is improved. This is something that you may not think is important until you are out hunting in a situation where you want to look into shadows around lighted area.  Can’t do that with a traditional I2 (intensifier tube) night vision device which will either be damaged by bright lights or shut off leaving you with no visibility at all.

The Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on has a 4.3 inch rail mounted monitor that makes it easy to scan dark field or wooded areas without any eye blindness that results from peeking through a bright night vision scope eye piece in the dark.  Your eye can’t adjust quickly back to night vision after looking into the bright scope’s viewer.  This makes it possible to comfortably hunt for hours with virtually no eye strain or night blindness.

Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on parts
Digital Crosshairs 1000 night vision clip-on parts

Just like phones and automobiles, everything will have a display sooner or later.  Why not a rifle scope?