Types of Night Vision Devices

There are plenty of night vision devices on a market today. Start from monoculars and end up with goggles and scopes. But what to choose and how it works? Check it out in this article.   Night vision seems like a pretty cool idea, right? You see it all the time in the movies. Some secret agent straps on a pair of googles sneak into a luxurious supervillain compound and mows down enemies under the cover of darkness. And as you watch all this you may occasionally ask yourself: "Do those goofy looking goggles really work?" The answer is: "Yes, absolutely". Did you know that a long time ago night vision devices were mostly used by soldiers and not so available for common people? But later everything has changed. Now you have open access to night vision devices and you don't even need to be a soldier to see in low light conditions. With a good night vision device, you can see a person standing over 200 meters s away even on a cloudy night. And whether we're talking goggles, scopes, or cameras, most of these devices rely on one or two types of night vision: image enhancement and thermal imaging. Image enhancement collects tiny amounts of light, including the lower portion of the infrared light spectrum, and amplifies it. Image enhancers use a photocathode to convert photons into electrons, and high-voltage to amplify these cathodes into a microchannel plate before they hit a screen coated with phosphors. Those phosphors create that green image you see when you look through the night vision device. Such devices have been around for more than 40 years and they've gone through multiple improvements.  The most challenging aspect of night vision devices is knowing which one to purchase and which to avoid. That's why, in this article, we will give you a technological advantage for an optimal acquisition in low-light conditions.

Night Vision Applications

Night vision is used to support law enforcement during the hours of darkness and low light circumstances and to help them detect and prevent the disruption of an enemy.

Do you know that the history of night vision started in war? First, night vision devices were used mainly by the military to gather information at night, when the enemies may be blind, which is a huge advantage. These devices greatly help snippers to turn down enemies from a safe distance even in bad weather conditions. 

Police and security often use both thermal-imaging and image-enhancement technology, particularly for surveillance. 

Hunters and nature enthusiasts use NVDs to maneuver through the woods at night. This is because many animals, including most large mammals, are more active at night or twilight. 

Hidden Object detection
Because the camera senses polarise light means hidden objects can be clearly seen. 

There are plenty of applications on a market today that allow you to feel like your favorite action hero, a soldier or a hunter just holding your phone in the arms. You can record a video or take photos with the night vision effect, change the sensitivity on the fly, and save it all by a single button press. This is a cool free way to maximize your device camera in the dark!

Night Vision Monoculars

Monocular night vision devices got a great field of view. The wider is a The FOV (field of view) the more you have chances to see your target before it'll see you. It doesn't help you to see further but it allows you to see more! Diopter focus for your eye on the back, counterclockwise for faraway target, clockwise for zooming in close to read a map, for example, are small details that make every monocular a superb night vision device. It also has an IR illuminator that will diffuse a tight beam of light allowing you to see through it well. Unlike the thermals that don't look through the wall and glass, because it reflects the heat. These versatile optics are often small and lite enough to fit in a shirt pocket. There are both pros and cons of the single eye of a monocular versus both eyes of a goggle. The advantages are that you can switch back and forth between your eyes when you get tired and that your unaided eye will maintain it's night adaptation and some of your peripheral vision. This gives the user better situational awareness. The disadvantage of a monocular is that it takes some time to get used to it to feel as natural.  So, if you are looking for a multitasking and versatility device, monocular is a good variant to choose from. 

Night Vision Goggles

Night vision is one of the most interesting technologically advanced and most expensive pieces of gear in real life. The mere ability to see someone before they see you that is what night vision goggles are about. Similar to the most ways they perform in digital reality. Is the field of view so wide? Do they work in total darkness? Do they have a cool sound when you turn it on? The answer is no, but let's reveal some essential benefits night vision goggles in real life has.   Nighttime glasses allow both eye viewing, have no magnification, and can be head-mounted. Whenever you turn them on you can see the object and focus on it. Being able to quickly identify friend or foe is extremely useful when acquiring targets. What makes goggles different from monocular is a tendency to give a bit better depth perception. The disadvantage is size, weight, and less versatility. It happens very often when you can become tired with extra weight wearing night-vision goggles. This device does not have the option to be mounted on rifles or adapted to rifle scopes and cameras. 

Night Vision Binoculars

Night vision binoculars eliminate the possibility of your light source scaring off your prey and uncover the shadowed areas of the wilderness. For complete darkness, many models feature an infrared illuminator that allows you to see. What is more, night vision binoculars help you to arrange the target without carrying additional equipment. The range finder will calculate the distance of an object from the point that you are viewing. Most of such devices have build-in TN smooth zoom technology that allows you delicate ultra-slow zooming. It gives you an opportunity to capture your experiences in good quality. An SD card allows you to record your adventures without any additional USB cables. You can also connect your phone or tablet, viewing everything simultaneously. Another advantage is that it can be used at any time and gives the best quality image regardless of lighting conditions.  

Our definition of a night vision binocular is a device that has two eyepieces and comes with magnification built-in. Dual image intensifier tubes provide crisp clear images in the darkest conditions. For example, Our

top choice of binoculars is the AGM FOXBAT-5 NIGHT VISION BI-OCULAR (it’s updated modern version of Armasight Discovery 5x binoculars) that has a rugged lightweight and versatile design with super-fast multi-coated all-glass optics and water and fog resistance body, which is a big plus. Also, it is tripod mountable with a dual eye-viewing system for comfortable long viewing night-time sessions. Besides, it has a powerful five times magnification. Another advantage is that the 5.0 times magnification lens delivers a nine-degree field of view mid-range focal length that still allows the operator to maintain situational awareness in the area. 

Night Vision Scopes

The night-vision scope is an optoelectronic device that allows images to be produced in levels of light approaching total darkness.  Most of the models provide a waterproof body with simple and easy to operate controls and adjustments. Adjustable illuminated reticle and included detachable long-range IR illuminator which enhances image clarity and shot precision. Such devices provide great viewing experience in low-light conditions. Besides, it is designed to afford the user outstanding optical clarity, a full field of view, a powerful infrared illumination, and day or night viewing.

Day/Night Systems

A day-night system is a device that can be extremely useful in tactical settings when the sun goes down. Just attach the day/night unit to the front of your scope and be ready to go. For example AGM Comanche 22 or Comanche 40, this kind of optic attaches to the objective (not the eyepiece) of a regular daylight scope or mounts to the rifle straight in front of the objective of the daylight scope. These devices give light amplification and use the daytime scope magnification and reticle for aiming. Such a system can be useful if you need both day and night capability and can't carry two rifles. Before you decide to buy any night-vision device you should pay attention to such aspects:

  • Magnification diapason
  • Eye relief
  • Zoom scale
  • Day-night mode
  • Types of reticles
  • Generation
  • Battery endurance
  • Built-in IR or not
  • Waterproof


The ordinary purpose of night-vision devices was to locate enemies and targets at night. Today night vision devices are used for everything from military applications to navigation, wildlife observation, and even entertainment. Various scopes, goggles, binoculars, and monoculars were made to help you stay safe and be one step ahead of your enemy. Although these devices use the same technology, before you make a purchase, identify your own needs.

Types of Night Vision Devices - August 4, 2020


August 4, 2020

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