Please some advice from other users: I have recently acquired a Thermal Viewer (HD50S) and the manual is less than clear about the various calibration options, when to use which option, and what the advantages/disadvantages and recommended use of the different options are.
Options: Manual, Semi-automatic or Automatic.
While I manage to calibrate the unit in each case I am not clear about what gets the best results, assuming a countryside/woodland situation.
Please may I ask for some practical examples on how people use these units and which calibration option works best for you?
For those who are interested: Yes, the unit detects heat-sources at some considerable distance, (The marketing-men claim a man-sized object at 1200 Yards) but obviously there is a relation between distance/size of the object/clarity of the sight picture. Judging distance/size of the object through the viewer is difficult and requires some experience. I look out on a woodland edge, and horses in the boundary field some 500 meters away are clearly picked up, foxes/badgers/small deer show up as a heat source but cannot necessarily be identified*, rabbits/hares/pheasants are just about noticeable. Using the viewer creates temporarily 'blindness' in the viewing eye, and even some disorientation and a slight dizziness. Also, having to deal with sticks, a rifle, bino's and viewer is clumsy, so 'stalking' on your own, using a thermal, is not really working. However I feel the unit will come in its own if you sit in a high seat and have both hands free, or when stalking as a team: One with the rifle/sticks/bino's, the other just using the viewer, taking on the role of a 'pointing dog'. And of course it is great for counts, surveys, tracking a fresh blood trail, finding a carcass or injured deer, or simply used for fun and to film wildlife (An extra piece of kit is required for filming).
*However, closer in, the definition is quite brilliant, my back garden is some 200 Meters deep and rats/rabbits/foxes/chickens/birds can be clearly identified. An unexpected bonus is that my wife, who is a beekeeper and has some 10 hives in our garden, has found out she can use the thermal viewer to observe activity, size and location of the bee colonies inside the hive. Last night we were playing with the unit in the garden, and carefully homed in on an exiting and promising heat source in the hedge. Until we realised that that is where I had done a wee, 5 min. earlier!