Inexpensive Night Vision: Sightmark, ATN, Pulsar or Other

Discussion in 'Long Gun Accessories and Optics' started by SharpDog, Sep 13, 2020.

  1. SharpDog

    SharpDog Member

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    Looking for an inexpensive (Sub $750) night vision scope for my .308. I found good reviews on the Sightmark Wraith at $500 and I also see the ATN X-Sight Pro series running $550 - $750. Obviously I want the best clarity and range available within my price point but also reliability and life span of the optics are important. I have read about ATN customer service and am thinking of getting a refurb version as that might have been gone over again by the techs.

    Sightmark Wraith: SM18011 4-32x50 (only 2x of this is optical zoom) at $500
    https://www.opticsplanet.com/sightmark-digital-riflescope.html

    ATN XSight Pro 4K 3-14 Buckhunter edition at $550
    https://www.opticsplanet.com/atn-x-sight-4k-buckhunter-edition-smart-day-night-hunting-rifle-scope-3-14-x-wit.html

    ATN XSight Pro 3-14 at $650
    https://www.opticsplanet.com/atn-atn-x-sight-4k-pro-edition-smart-day-night-hunting-rifle-scope-with-full-hd.html

    ATN XSight Pro 5-20x at $750
    https://www.opticsplanet.com/atn-x-sight-4k-pro-edition-smart-day-night-hunting-rifle-scope-5-20x-with-full-h.html

    And a newer model of the Wraith SM18030 3-24X50 (3X Optical, 1-8X Digital) at $790

    https://www.opticsplanet.com/sight-sm18030-wraith-4k-3-24x50-w-ir-digitl-scp.html

    The closest Pulsar to my price range seems to be the Digex N455 4-16 at $1150:
    https://www.opticsplanet.com/pulsar-digex-n455-digital-night-vision-riflescope.html

    After looking at more video, It looks like the ATNs are fixed power optical and all the zoom is digital.

    For whichever one I get I will add a 5W illuminator that uses 18650 batteries as I already have lights, rechargeable batteries and charger for these.
    https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B07MC17VCL/?coliid=I2XKN8NXN3DTCP&colid=YE2PTD5V2CJI&psc=1&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

    Judging from the videos the optics seems to be very similar. I do like the extra magnification available on the ATN and it has some fluff like a compass or rangefinder which I really don't need. The battery life is better but the Sightmark is less expensive and uses AA batteries which I also have rechargeables and chargers already in use.

    Does anyone have any experience or insight into any of these optics or any others that are comparable in price ?

    Here are some related Youtube videos:











    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LryG-ai5hVk

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=triu_Zedv4w

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZW0VCwNZgw

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9YlrqXFpvc
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2020
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  2. 12Bravo20

    12Bravo20 Member

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    Buy the best and latest generation of night vision that you can afford is my advice.

    My only experience with night vision scopes is with thAN/PVS-1 and AN/PVS-4 scopes that the Army had when I was in. They are both 1st generation might vision scopes. Now as far as night vision goggles, I have used the PVS-5 2nd gen. and the PVS-7 3rd gen. NVG's. There is definitely a difference between the gen2 and gen3. A lot of the inexpensive scopes and goggles are going to be either gen1 or gen2.
     
  3. SharpDog

    SharpDog Member

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    Last edited: Sep 13, 2020
  4. SharpDog

    SharpDog Member

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    Well, it's looking like the Wraith will win. Too many good reviews, about half as many horror stories as the ATN and just an unbeatable price. Sleeping on it overnight (well, not actually ON the scope mind you).

     
  5. SharpDog

    SharpDog Member

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    Wraith on order from OpticsPlanet, came out to just under $450 shipped with tax. I used a coupon and had $64 opticsplanet bucks (or whatever they call them). Would have been $514 shipped with tax without the OP bucks.
     
  6. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    That will need a review once you've warmed it up.
     
  7. Meeks36

    Meeks36 Member

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    No pictures?
     
  8. Demi-human

    Demi-human Member

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    Have you got it yet?:)
     
  9. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    This thread cost me $482.23
     
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  10. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    So.......any report yet? If it’s even semi decent, it may be in my future
     
  11. SharpDog

    SharpDog Member

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    Haskell-panther.png

    Got it mounted on the rifle. Just got the BOGpod a couple of days ago. Haven't shot it yet. Mounting was simple, stll learning the controls. No auto-off switch so forgetting to turn it off drains the batteries (did that). That's a more powerful illuminator than the one it comes with (18650 batteries).
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2020
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  12. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    Anybody have feedback on this lately?
     
  13. greyling22

    greyling22 Member

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    my experience with older, cheap night vision, was that on a bright night, it was ok. On dark nights, it was only as good as the IR light you had. And the pulsar scope had this little dinky light on it, and was only good for like 80 feet. Not too bad if you're in a stand by a feeder, but useless if you're trying to find an stalk pigs in a 1000 acre pasture.
     
  14. SharpDog

    SharpDog Member

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    It works really well. I got an improved IR flashlight linked in the post. The only thing is the scope does not have auto-off so it will eat your batteries if you forget to turn it off. I bought rechargeable batteries for everything, ATN seems to have better features and they are always sending me emails but everyone says to stay away from them and Pulsar is just too expensive for what you get. This was really the only option for me. In a while maybe Pulsar will release something cheaper.
     
  15. BigBL87

    BigBL87 Member

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    I won't be buying one in the incredibly near future, but the price point on the Wraith is tempting. Right now my coyote setup is a Fenix TK25 Red light with a Burris Fullfield E1 Scope on my Weatherby Vanguard. Serviceable but not as nice as night vision.
     
  16. CraigC
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    CraigC Sixgun Nut

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    I have the Sightmark Photon XT and it works great for what it cost. It absolutely needed a bigger illuminator. I got Dad an X-sight three years ago and it seemed like a good one at first impression.
     
  17. shafter

    shafter Member

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    I've tried several of the inexpensive models and from my experiences, they're junk. They eat batteries, only work when it's almost light enough to not need it in the first place, and wear out fast. The PVS-14's are quite good but they're pretty much triple your budget. If I could wait, I think I'd prefer to save up longer until I could afford a good set that I won't have to replace.
     
  18. CraigC
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    CraigC Sixgun Nut

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    Which models? What time frame? You realize the thread is about scopes and you're talking about monoculars?

    I'm curious about this because my Photon works wonderfully with an additional IR illuminator.
     
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  19. SharpDog

    SharpDog Member

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    There's a lot of stuff that's better than what I have and costs three times as much. The Wraith works as advertised and I'm happy with it on my .308.
     
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  20. Ej3

    Ej3 Member

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    I have a Sightmark Wraith 2-16x28 on my TC Compass in .308 or 300 BLK. With five (5) weapon settings, swapping between rifles is easy. For the price range and my needs, it works well for me.

    Sightmark Wraith on 300 BLK.jpg Sightmark Wraith on 308 TC Compass.jpg

    The first deer in this video is at 100 yards (2x), the balance of the video is about 75 yards.


    The raccoons in the below photos are 170 yards deep in the woods (2x, 4x, 6x). The deer is 75 yards (2x, 6x). All photos were taken in the dark.

    201030 (6).jpg 201030 (2).jpg 201030 (3).jpg 201031 (2).jpg 201031 (3).jpg

    As you can see it has its limitations. But for under 150 yards, I think it is a great value. The FOV at 2x is really good. It is super easy to use. It uses four AA batteries and the IR uses two CR123A batteries (or one 16650 rechargable). I use rechargeable for both the Wraith and IR; and having spares fully charged for a quick swap out is no big deal. The focus is a bit touchy, so moving targets may go out focus if moving closer or away from you.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2020
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  21. BigBL87

    BigBL87 Member

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    So, a bit of a zombie thread revival, but I figured I'd share this in case someone who was looking might be able to use the information.

    Sightmark has a law enforcement discount program, and it seems they aren't CRAZY picky on the definition of law enforcement. I'm a probation officer, so an officer of the court but not a sworn peace officer. In any event, I emailed them on a whim asking if I qualified (they said yes) and what a Wraith would run me. I don't want to give the specific number, but its a significant discount from the list price anywhere. I'm going to get some money from a class action settlement in the next few months, and the amount is conveniently about the same as the price they gave me. :D
     
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  22. BigBL87

    BigBL87 Member

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    Digging this one up again, but I did end up ordering and getting the Wraith!

    I bought an offset mount so that it sits in a more natural position on a bolt action rifle, made by Ron Bimmer Outdoors. Sightmarks makes their own offset mount as well. I also bought an upgraded IR illuminator, haven't had it out yet but played around with it a little, pretty neat little piece of kit.

    20210324_193129.jpg
     
  23. Meeks36

    Meeks36 Member

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    If you dont mind me asking price?
     
  24. BigBL87

    BigBL87 Member

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    The Wraith cost me $375 (now that I have it I'm less worried about sharing he number ;)) with the law enforcement discount. Extended mount was $60, upgraded IR light with mount (not pictured) was $159.
     
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  25. Trent

    Trent Member

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    Here's the ATN 4k Pro 5-20 @500 yards, lighting up a traffic sign at the edge of our property. Behind that you can see the 1500 illuminator I got from ATN is also lighting up the grain silos at ~950 yards; although they are reflective, so take it with a dab of salt. :)

    upload_2021-4-8_13-52-40.png

    This is ~250 yards, the laser rangefinder is still reading an earlier ping I made.

    upload_2021-4-8_13-54-27.png


    This is ~50 yards (the laser rangefinder was still reading the ping on the traffic sign when I heard the deer from the above screen shot as it walked past me and I turned to see it up close...)

    upload_2021-4-8_13-56-8.png

    That 1500 illuminator ATN sells is pretty potent.

    About as heavy as a boat anchor, all assembled though, with the integrated laser rangefinder, 4k pro, and 1500 illuminator all bolted on the rifle.

    JsoRake.png

    4SkMAw6.png

    Due to the weight I added a harris ultralight swivel bipod, as it was no longer an "offhand" rifle, lol.

    I'm 99% certain that the assembled optics arrangement weighs more than the rifle it sets upon, and the bulk of that weight is up front, making it very front heavy.

    For those who have lugged around an under barrel M203, well, that's about what it feels like, balance wise.
     
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