Compact Infrared Imagers for Observing & Hunting Game
Online — The February-March issue of OUTDOOR LIFE Magazine in the USA featured the availability of several new “low priced” (some lower than others) compact, thermal imaging products aimed at the outdoors person and hunter.
Here is a brief summary of the devices mentioned with weblinks back to their online product pages with a bit more detail as gleaned from the individual web pages.
Needless to say, there are many more products than the ones show here or in the magazine article.
It’s also no surprise that more than one company seems to have compact thermal imagers at prices less than that of a poor-quality used car! The race continues.
The all new Leupold LTO-Tracker compact thermal imager is only 5.6 inches long and weighs less than 10 ounces, allowing it to be carried comfortably in any pocket. It features a 21 degree field of view, 6x digital zoom, and has a thermal detection distance of up to 600 yards.
The LTO-Tracker sports a Leupold Gold Ring and is Designed, Machined, and Assembled in the United States.
Estimated current price: $699.
FLIR Scout TK
The FLIR Scout TK is a pocket-sized thermal vision monocular for exploring the outdoors—at night and in low light conditions.
Scout TK reveals your surroundings and helps you see people, objects and animals over 100 yards (90 m) away.
Estimated current price: $599 USD.
FLIR Scout III Monocular
Offering enhanced performance with 30 Hz or 60 Hz imaging, and advanced image processing, the Scout III family is ready for your next adventure in the great outdoors.
Scout III displays the heat emitted by animals, humans, and terrain-day or night-and has multiple applications for legal hunting, camping, land management, and outdoor recreation.
Estimated current price (30 Hz model): $3,499.
FLIR (Armasight) LWIR Thermal Night Vision for Hunting
Packing the latest in thermal imaging tech that makes images from heat instead of light.
The FLIR Apollo eliminates the requirement of removing the existing day scope from your rifle, to replace it with a dedicated thermal sight.
Made for hunters, SWAT teams, and military marksmen who want to use the daylight sniper scopes they’re familiar with, but add thermal night vision capability, ThermoSight C-Series (Apollo) scopes give users the best of both worlds.
Estimate current price: $5,795 USD.
The digital sight provides for day or night time predator and hog hunting, while functioning similar to a conventional reflex sight using both eyes open for fast and intuitive target acquisition with greatly improved situational awareness.
Current online price is $2,399.99 USD.
EOTECH’s Light Weapon Thermal Sight (LWTS) is an extremely versatile thermal imaging device.
This clip-on system mounts in front of your day optics and allows you to view your reticle over the thermal image.
In addition, it can be used as a handheld observation tool or mounted by itself as a stand-alone weapon sight.
Estimated current price: $13.599 USD.
Mini Thermal Monocular – Product Improved (MTM-PI)
Mini Thermal Monocular (MTM)
L-3 Warrior Systems’ pocket-sized MTM and MTM-PI has an ergonomic design that is handheld or tripod mountable and features an integrated laser pointer.
This thermal imager allows high resolution observation and target identification under adverse conditions from low to no light.
Estimated current price: $10,000 USD.
Certainly with the rapid development of new products aimed at many market segments, there is a reasonable chance that in a year from now, or possibly less, we may see more consumer-oriented products like these with even more features and lower prices.
There’s no certainty of lower prices, just an observable trend. So, don’t hold off buying, if you need one, or want one, buy it!