Night Vision vs. Thermal Scopes

Night Vision vs. Thermal Scopes

Make the Most of Your Night Sighting Needs

Getting the right equipment for sighting and hunting at night can make all the difference in your experience. Learn more about which tools are right for you.

Nature doesn’t sleep. Several people who enjoy hunting, spotting, birding, and nature watching will find themselves going out during the unusually dim dawn and dusk hours, or even during the pitch black of night. Choosing the right equipment to cut through the darkness will make a difference in how much you enjoy the outing.

Night vision and thermal imaging devices are designed to assist hunters and others with detecting, identifying, and targeting game and other creatures in the night. Each device has its method of operation, with night vision using infrared light reflections to illuminate the night and thermal imaging using the radiation of body heat to identify animals amongst nature.

Night vision works a lot like a flashlight, except that the IR light is invisible to the naked eye. This technology is preferred by those who want to illuminate darker settings, with different devices offering different levels of clarity and illumination. Some night vision will work best in dusk or dawn light, while others will perform exceptionally even in the blackest nights.

Thermal imaging devices simply seek out heat signatures of nearby objects, making it easy for you to identify prey or creatures at night in a variety of settings. The scopes offer a variety of other sighting perks and features, but that’s how their basic function works. Choosing between them and night vision devices starts by understanding exactly what your options are.

Keep reading to learn about two popular night vision options, as well as a couple of the best thermal scopes for those just starting with nighttime sighting and spotting. You’ll get the scoop on what each device offers, and then we’ll help you understand more about thermal scopes and how to choose your best option.