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Thread: NV or Thermal

  1. #1

    NV or Thermal

    just a question if you have enough money would you buy Night Vision or Thermal imager?

    It would be used as a tool for locating poachers and wildlife for management plans mainly at night, but i can see that with thermal it would locate heat sources in the day. I thought i would ask your views.

  2. #2
    Really you would need both as they do compliment each other but if you can't have both then in my opinion Thermal would be better given the situation you mention for the following reasons:

    1.To use NV effectively normally requires an IR lilluminator which although the beam is invisible at the source you can see the light and this may give your presence away, Thermal has no illuminator to give you away.

    2. Thermal can be used regardless of mists/fog (although I haven't tried mine in fog to prove this)

    3. NV is less likely to spot someone trying to hide from you whereas with TI equipment you have more chance to spot the 'heat signature' even if only a small part of it may be visible.

    All that said, Thermal imagers are a lot more cash and would I say that at twice the price of my NV scope is it twice as good....probably is good but if I were you I would not fork out cash on any NV or TI equipment unless you have seen both in operation and compare for your self.
    By three methods we may learn wisdom:
    First, by reflection, which is noblest;
    Second, by imitation, which is easiest;
    and third by experience, which is the bitterest

  3. #3
    SD Regular
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Herefordshire, Hampshire or Essex
    I would tend to agree with Dave on his view of your position. As an aside I have used my TI in the mist and it's not bad at all.
    Feel free to PM me and arrange to come across and look at TI and NV if it helps you to make a decision - as said the money involved is not inconsiderable. Happy to help you where I can.
    Nooooooooooooobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!! Our main weapon is.........

  4. #4
    I only have NV ..& even then its a DIY set up made by an absolute wizrd of a guy with electronics .....can see 200yds easy & shoot 100-150 fine....

    same gentleman in question has the guide TI & demonstrarted to me in daylight only.....but guy up street with hand on a tree ...rmeoves the hand and can see the print still clearly.....

    these guys were using it in pitch black to trail poachers and could tell what track their vehicle had gone up by the heat of the tyre tracks remaining for a short period after poachers had gone up it....I was amazed...!!!

    so yer looking at 3k ish for that & what for a decent NV ? depends if you go tube or digital...

    I have heard of guys whacking out 2k for a decent add-on and 3k for the guide TI can theoritaclly be totally in the dark......serious foxers using them both for target finding then switching to the NV for the shot.
    on the flip side

    I also heard stories of individuals buying both or one or other then using them for illegal activities....poaching at night and selling the game to claim back the cost of the equipment

    not what would be great for us also works great for "them" and even harder to find the buggers...right time right place I guess

    so after a waffle .....what would I have TI or NV?
    if possible


  5. #5
    I use NV, a Yukon Ranger, with the Deerelight NV lamp (the lamp is the best purchase I made this year) for spotting. We use blacklight hunting cams for poachers or fly tippers and move them around the various high seats, when we put the bait down for the boar, If I could afford it, TI would be a very welcome addition.

    I do wonder we are not allowed to use NV on the rifle only for spotting, does TI cause the blackness in the eye (affecting the rods and cones in the eye), like NV does?

  6. #6
    Cheers chaps

    I do wonder we are not allowed to use NV on the rifle only for spotting, does TI cause the blackness in the eye (affecting the rods and cones in the eye), like NV does?

    can you elaborate on this please.

  7. #7

    I hope I am not going to make this complicated. The eye consists of two classic photo-receptor cells called rods and cones. Rods are extremely sensitive at low light levels, visual experience is based solely on the rod signal. This is why you have a diminished vision at night/in the dark if you look into a light, it causes a blackness in the affected eye. In this case, if you are using night vision its the same effect - taking into account the Yukon ranger is a monocle.

    As where I live, I cannot by law use night vision on a rifle. So when I go out it needs to be two of us, one the spotter for the reason above the other the rifle, who will have no visual impairement.

    I am wondering, if TI, has the same effect on the eye as NV does. If it is not the case, I could then be the spotter and the rifle, hope that helps clarify.

    Last edited by Magyar Vadász; 25-08-2013 at 12:41. Reason: grammar error

  8. #8
    For spotting, thermal wins hands down!!

    It is terrible for knackering your nightvision though.

    You see everything with thermal and not with NV. definition is an issue and I would never want to shoot with the stuff I can afford.

    Thermal WILL NOT see through stuff though. Even tufty grass is enough to obscure a heat source (nor will nV though!!)

    You are quite right about daylight use too as it makes spying into trees etc very easy as long as you have line of sight to a target. I have watched deer emerging from woods just before dark when I would have had no chance of seeing them with naked eye/binos

  9. #9
    Thanks shootingduckdog, you just answered my question. Its still a nice to have though, I bet.

  10. #10
    Answer to your question, if you had enough money would you buy N.V or Thermal the answer would definitely be thermal.

    I used two different thermal imaging cameras for my job. One cost over £30,000 and the second was £7,000. The cheaper one had a portable video recorder which had a 6 inch display screen and when you used the camera it was very easy on your eyes, nothing like looking through an n.v scope. The expensive one had a lot more bells and whistles on it showing all the temperatures around but I always returned to the FLIR model which was simple to use.
    I had no problem spotting any wildlife at any time and in any weather and you could even see birds nesting in trees. As was already mentioned footmarks and hand prints could be observed for several minutes after they had gone so you would have no problem following up a beast that had been shot by following its blood trail. You can look at your monitor on a pitch black night and your eyes return to normal when you look away. Try this with an n.v and you will walk into the first obstacle in your way.

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