The decision to choose between night vision devices is a critical one and requires careful consideration. It’s as important as the decision to buy it in the first place.
How does a night vision device work?
A night vision device refers to an optoelectronic system that functions using a light converter, amplifying light by generating an image that the human eye can see. For night vision devices to function correctly, there’s a need for a minimum amount of external light like start light, moonlight or residual light from other sources.
Tiny lights or light generated by infrared (IR) illuminator and a night vision device. Some night vision devices have inbuilt short-range IR lamps with small, powerful illuminators. These offer a wide range, adjustments for light intensity and infrared light beam focus. The electron beams fall on the photocathode and are amplified many times on a luminophore screen.
This screen transforms the electron beams into photons and generates a visible image. Phosphorus on the luminophore gives off green light because of eye sensitivity. The human eye can only recognize colors in the 500-560 nm band, which corresponds with green and blue. With this band, it is easier to identify details than with other colors.
How do you choose between night vision devices?
Here are a few factors to consider:
- Consider the generation of the night vision devices, if it is Generation 1,2,3 or 4
- Consider the magnification
- Look at your budget
- Check the viewing ability of the device
Let’s take a look at some of the night vision devices available.
- Night vision Monoculars
- Night vision Goggles
- Night vision binoculars
- Night vision scope
- Day/Night system
Night Vision Monoculars:
Night vision monocular is a single eye unit without magnification. They are also referred to as the swiss army knife in the night vision equipment category. A good monocular is the night-time device with the most versatile function. They are lightweight and portable, making them an ideal option for head mounting.
Higher generation monoculars can attach to spotting scopes and rifle scopes and also mount directly on a weapon. They can mount in front of red dot sight for night-vision compatible firearms. Some of these devices can also adapt to a camera and for photography using a camera adapter. They are often small and light so that they can fit into a shirt pocket.
- When you get tired, you can switch between your eyes so that the unaided eye will maintain your peripheral vision and night adaptation level
- They are an excellent option for people who intend to multitask
- They are the most versatile and also have more accessories to pick
- The single eye doesn’t feel natural and may take time to get adjusted.
- The user needs to master how to keep both eyes open so they can get the best experience.
Night Vision Goggles:
Night vision goggles are devices that allow for viewing with both eyes. They have no magnification, and you can mount them. The fantastic thing about these goggles is that they have a natural feel when wearing them, and there isn’t so much involved in getting used to them. We have two types of goggles: a two eyepiece goggle that views using a single image tube and a two eyepiece goggle that views using dual image tubes, also called stereo vision.
A goggle is an effective navigation device, like monoculars. Double tube goggles provide stereo vision, which means that each eye will see its unique image, unlike the same object shared with both eyes. Dual perception helps in better determining distances and navigation, irrespective of where you’re going. Goggles work best in stationary observation and short-duration navigation.
- The stereo vision makes the dual tube goggles have more depth perception enabling better navigation ability.
- A goggle is heavier and less versatile than a good monocular. When a goggle mounts on the head, it causes the unit to go below the eyes while walking, thus making you tired with the extra weight.
- They cannot be adapted to rifle scopes or mounted on rifles
- It has limited camera adaptation
Night Vision Binoculars:
Night vision binoculars are devices that have two eyepieces with an inbuilt magnification. They are generally heavy to mount on the head due to the big magnification lens, especially if it has a dual tube model. Also, the magnification zooms in too much, so you can’t navigate properly. They primarily magnify images at longer distances while at a stationary point. Remember that the more magnification applied on a night vision device, the more dim the object will turn out because of lack of light.
- They are an excellent choice for close-in sighting and maximum distance.
- Binoculars all have fixed magnification, meaning they zoom in, an exception of few models.
- It’s not easy to navigate or view close areas using binoculars.
Night Vision Scopes:
Night vision scopes are of two types. The popular style is similar to a traditional rifle scope, only bigger and heavier, and are called weapon sights. The other type attaches to a regular rifle scope and is day/night systems because it is easy to remove, and you can use the range in the daytime. Another scope can see on the night hunting is thermal scope. Check more from Ellettbrothers.
A day-night system is a device that mounts to the objective of traditional daylight scope or directly on the rifle objective. These systems provide light amplification and use the magnification of the daytime scope for aiming. The day/night system is used for tactical settings, especially when the sunsets. You can attach this unit in front of your rifle, and you’re good to go. Its compact size and complex lens system do not gather much light, unlike a night scope.
If you need a system that can function both day and night, nothing beats a sound day/night system. Ensure you get a high-quality daytime scope to gather enough light.