Did a little night vision testing over the weekend...

So went down to a friend’s property who has hogs again and wants them dropped.

I took:
-Zeiss Orion 80 Fero Z51
-ATN Thor 384HD 2-8X

The ATN was the hands down winner for hunting purposes. Driving around in the dark with the ATN hanging out the window was…illuminating. :grinning:

We had the Zeiss in a field right next to the ATN and it couldn’t see hogs 75 yards away, even with an IR illuminator on.

So all hunters who got to play with all 3 agreed the IR scope is the best money to spend first for a hunter.

One hunter was sure he wanted the PVS until we jumped a buck near the road and it jumped the fence/hedgerow and I could see it through the ATN and he couldn’t see it at all…at 10 feet distance!

ATN owes me money!


Thanks for the review.
Holy Cow, those scopes are expensive.
Wish I could afford them.
For now I’ll have to just depend on the headlights on my truck and the reflection from those little beady red eyes.



ok, so for us scope newbies, you liked the ATN the best - is ATN the brand?

What is an “IR scope” ?

Was there much moonlight?

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$2200-2700 depending on where I looked(cheaper didn’t have it in stock)… to rich for my blood. I will keep using a green laser illuminator…

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As a dealer for ATN they have been great. Really liked them. We have played with some really expensive units and are crazy impressed. The new ones that are just coming out are awesome. The thermal units are surpassing night vision… but, night vision can pick up things that thermal cannot. Like lasers… other NV…


Out of the 3 scopes we tested, the thermal scope (the ATN was the only thermal scope we brought) performed best for HUNTING (locating game)

IR means infrared, which in hind-sight is not the right technology. The other two scopes are Gen 2 and Gen 3 night vision which amplifies the available light, not IR.

Very little ambient light, moon was up but overcast.


For instance we were looking at what was probably a possum crawl across a field at one point, but no way to be sure via the thermal. We are just guessing as it had a tail that was easy to see and thermal doesn’t see skinny furry tails well as the hair blocks the heat and tends to make them fuzzy.
A gen 3 scope like the PVS14, you can read things with, the thermal only sees the page.

The Thor scopes also have a rangefinding capability and automatically correct the cross hair location for things like elevation angles and tilt. Neat stuff, but a harsh learning curve in some ways.


There has been an increase in questions about thermal and NV at the shop as of late.
Again, really look into the advantages of NV over thermal…
Big one, you can look through glass with NV and you cannot with thermal in general.
With a lot of the technology going digital, these 2 worlds are blending.


For 700 to 800 gets you into the old style NV units. Heavy, usually robust, and a leap over what they were 20 years ago… something to look into.
The new digital units can be great… but be careful on battery life.
For us, anything is better than nothing.


I have a PVS14 (bought well over a decade ago) now and lust after an IR unit, but what I REALLY want is a fusion of the 2 technologies in one unit.


I absolutely love NV… thermal is cool… but you cannot see inside a car or through glass. Still think it is important to have in your BUG out bag…