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What scope is better for night hunting

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/10/2007 at 08:22
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Hello,

In Estonia we can do night hunting. What kind of scopes are the best in low light conditions.

Kind regards,
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/11/2007 at 08:11
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Can you suggest some better products. Is there something like this, that i can put on night vision front to my scope. And please suggest some night vision scopes too.

Regards,

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/12/2007 at 17:16
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  For a pure nighttime hunting scope, night vision optics won't reveal your true identity like the flare from illuminated scopes can...



Edited by cyborg - August/29/2008 at 02:26
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/12/2007 at 17:20
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/17/2007 at 05:41
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When it comes to conventional scopes I would say that the 3-12x56 on shorter to normal distances are the best solution and 6-24x72 is top when it comes to normal or long distances.
But if you can use NVG there is plenty of close to worthless sh*t out there, the majority of the items that is obtainable in europe is russian stuff and the quality is often very poor, many breaks due to recoil and they are stressing the eye a lot.
IF not the money is an issue, you can buy a better NVG and mount behind the scope or thermal ( very costly) and mount alone.
The thermal is probably top, but in my opinion it's not fair hunting.

Regards Technika
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/17/2007 at 05:44
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If you want to get a high quality solution for low money i would recomend a better non illuminated 8x56.
Like Helia, Zeiss, Swarovski etc, German no1 reticle is best when the light is very poor.

Regards Technika
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/17/2007 at 17:41
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Hunter,

Sorry for the diversion.  First, a couple of questions.  What is your budget?  When you say "night hunting," do you mean hunting in complete darkness, in the light of a full moon, or low light just before dusk?  What are the typical shooting distances you will encounter for your type of hunting, both in good light and low light?  If you can answer these questions, you will get more specific replies.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/17/2007 at 17:47
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In general, the following combination is optimal for low light shooting:

 

1.  High end glass from any of the best quality brands such as Zeiss (Diavari), Swarovski (PH/PV), S&B, Kahles.  These scopes typically provide superior twilight performance due to high quality lenses and optical designs with coatings that optimize light transmission in the blue spectrum, which is the most prevalent in low light.  They typically feature total light transmission values (not to be confused with "per lens" values) of 90% or better.

2.  An objective lens diameter & magnification combination that provides at least 4mm exit pupil diameter, with 7mm being optimal.  An exit pupil larger than 7mm doesn't provide a noticeable difference to the human eye.  Exit pupil is the diameter of the light beam exiting the ocular lens reaching the eye, and is determined by objective lens diameter divided by magnification (ex:  56mm obj / 8X = 7mm exit pupil).

3.  Either a bold (thick), high contrast reticle or a well-designed illuminated reticle.  A first focal plane reticle is easier to see in low light than a second focal plane reticle because as scope magnification is increased, the reticle increases in size in direct proportion to the target image.  Illuminated reticles are useful provided they don't provide too much illumination, which is pretty common with many IR designs.  If too much of the reticle is illuminated or the illumination is too bright, the flare will overpower the target making it difficult to see.  My idea of the perfect illuminated reticle for night or low light hunting would be a simple, small dot with a brightness control that allows the dot to be just dim enough to see in low light, no brighter.

 

The above applies to low light, dusk, or moonlit nights.  No matter how well a scope performs in low light, not even the highest quality conventional scope will allow you to see in complete darkness.  For this, you will need night vision optics, of which I know next to nothing about.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2007 at 08:25
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Hello again,

My budget is max about 3000-3500 USD. I need to hunt on moonlight (we can´t use lamps on hunt) My shooting range is 80-120m. Is there any test tables for low-light scopes.

Thank you...

Kind Regads
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2007 at 10:58
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With that budget, conditions and distances, I would get the best low light scopes available -- either the Zeiss Diavari 1.5-6X42 or 2.5-10X50 with #4 or similar reticle or the S&B Zenith 1.5-6X42 or 2.5-10X56 with their #7 or #9 reticles.  I might even opt for the Varipoint illuminated version of the Zeiss or the Flashdot version of the S&B for even greater versatility.  If you do go with an illuminated reticle, it is best to just get a simple dot or small illumination in the center of the reticle only so you don't have too much illumination flare overpowering the target.  You won't go wrong with either scope.  I don't know of any test data that conclusively proves the low light performance of any particular group of scopes that doesn't involve some subjectivity.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2007 at 11:25
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My choises would be.

1. The absolutely best choise would be zeiss 6-24x72 in tests i did cuople of years ago in twilight i could see 15-30 minutes longer one evening with that than i could with zeiss 3-12x56 och 6-24x56 on distances from 150-300 meters.

 

2. Zeiss 3-12x56 illuminated with the smallest possible dot.

3. eiss 3-12x56 non illuminated with reticle no 11 or 1.

4. or with lower costs the better 8x56 scopes with no 1 reticle.

 

I would not take the 42mm as it's limits you to much.

 

Regards Technika



Edited by www.technika.nu
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2007 at 12:26
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80 to 120 yds is a long pistol shot-- off the end of the gun--- do you even need magnification??? Have you considered just a dot or something like an aimpoint???
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2007 at 14:33
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Dale

 

ITs must be wonderfull for you to have built in night vision tubes in your head.

 

But for the rest of us that doesent have that a very good scope is the choise.

We are talking about night hunting, I am not able to see anything with my bare eyes on 50 yds.

When using a 10X scope on 100 yards the eyes are seeing this as 10 yards and I am able to see the animal, not very well but well enough for shooting it.

 

Aimpoints and a other red dot sights are wonderfull for close range work and daylight, but they are for normal eyes very difficult in twilight and useless at night (unless combined with NVG).

 

Regards Technika

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2007 at 16:00
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Originally posted by www.technika.nu www.technika.nu wrote:

I would not take the 42mm as it's limits you to much.

 

Unless you're using a scope topping out at 6X.  This will still provide a 7mm exit pupil, which is as much light as your eye can use anyway.  For the short distances mentioned, you don't need more magnification than that, and a low powered scope will provide much wider FOV and be shorter and lighter, all else being equal.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2007 at 18:43
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OHHHH touchy touchy-- just wonderin-- we hunt rabbits at night in the west (from 8:00 pm to 1-2 a.m pretty nighty) sometimes spots and sometimes not, but the terrain is more open (sounds like it) and sometimes small dots and green circles with no magnification work great at distances up to 100 yds around. Other times when dog hunting against a snowy backround especially, we use regular scopes. Also have hunted elk and deer in deep timber in "the dark" and found little difference in the supposed advantage of optics over iron sites (can't see either) and work off the silhouttes. Because of the "no shoot after certain hours" we just sneak and spot just to see if the scopes etc will work. (after 10 pm. westerm mountain standard time). Sometimes when the moon is full the amimals can be spotted 3-400 yds. bedded down on a beautiful moonlit slope of the rockies.Sometimes when viewing into a darker area the optics will help "pull out" the target. Perhaps the area you hunt is thicker. In either case, the poster had not specifically ruled out none magnification devices.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2007 at 23:53
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Rifledude

 

8x56 gives a 7mm exit pupil just as the 6x42 do, but the 8x56 gives the eye 80% more light.

10x72 would give the eye even more light.

I agree that 6x42 is more than enough on shorter ranges like 30-50 yds, but out to 120 the extra light from a bigger scope might be the differance between seeing and no seeing.

 

Dale

The majority of the nighthunting in europe is wild boar and foxes, sometimes out in the fields but very often in thick timber. But even out in the fields i cannot see the animals without a binocular.

Many nights it's not even possible to hunt as the light is to low.

Moon and snow doesent count, as it requires no special equipment and by the way, the bigger wild boars wouldent show up then, they wait until it's much darker...........

 

Regards Technika

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2007 at 09:38
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Originally posted by www.technika.nu www.technika.nu wrote:

Rifledude

 

8x56 gives a 7mm exit pupil just as the 6x42 do, but the 8x56 gives the eye 80% more light.

10x72 would give the eye even more light.

I agree that 6x42 is more than enough on shorter ranges like 30-50 yds, but out to 120 the extra light from a bigger scope might be the differance between seeing and no seeing.

 

 

Yes, that's correct, but the apparent image brightness between the two is exactly the same.  The additional light from the 56mm objective will not be noticeable in this case because your eye will already have as much light as it can use at its full dilation, which is around 7mm.  Your eye will also not be able to detect any additional brightness with a 10X72, only more magnification.  I'm not talking about the mathematical calculation of surface area of the larger lens, only practical useable light.  I'm not a believer in the "twilight factor" number concept.  If he wants additional magnification, then you are also correct that you will have to increase objective diameter to get the maximum image brightness, but 6X is more than enough magnification to see targets out to 150 yards or so on a moonlit night, using good quality optics.  Shooting in the dark is not a long range proposition.  Another important factor in being able to shoot in low light is being able to find the target in the scope, and having the additional FOV of the lower magnification scope will help you here.  Plus, as you go larger on objective diameter, you have to use increasingly higher mounts, which handicaps you when you have to make a quick shot.  I too hunt pigs at night frequently, and I've never been handicapped by not having enough magnification.  I generally keep my scope set on 4X anyway and have never missed a shot opportunity on an animal I've spotted in my binoculars.



Edited by RifleDude
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2007 at 10:24
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If you have an animal in really poor ligth on 120 yards and look at it at 5X magnification, that gives you the impression that it's on 24 yards.

If you have the same situation with 10X then you have the impression that the animal is on 12 yards.

When it's really low light there is a huge differance betwen the two, but in rather good ligth like moon or twilight you will not really notice the differance.

 

On a test a september evening some years ago we tried Zeiss 3-12x56, 6-24x56 and ZF6-24x72  against each others at a hare at 150 meters and a fox at 300 meters.

The 6-24x72 won the test with betwen 15-30 minutes over the others depending on the "shooter".

 

 

Regards Technika

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2007 at 10:31
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What's that S$B ad  "I couldn't have made that shot without my..............Nikes"   God I love testamonials.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2007 at 09:50
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Rifle dude

 

There is not an exact amount of light that can pass through the 7mm exitpupil.

The bigger the fronlens and the bigger the magnification the more light will pass through it.

Otherwise if the fact should have been the opposite and a 4x32 or a 6x42 or a 10x72 let through the same amount of light to the eye even a 1x7 or a 2x14 would allow the same amount of light to the eye.

In such case there would be no need of optics for low light hunting, but there is, mostly times you cannot see the animal with your bare eyes but there is no problem to see them with a good scope or binocular.

 

That said the most important factor is of course the quality of the optical system.

And also that the optical system is optimized for low light situations.

All optical systems cannot be optimized for all situations, and such things as colour correctness even though its nice to have it's not the most important in a low ligth system as you cannot see the colours anyway.

It's quite fun to see how the best of the classical optics that are made for night use are very close to the best systems today when compared at night.

When comparing them daytime the classical systems fails to the modern systems because the have been optimized for military low light conditions 70 years ago, and not for perfect colours or edge sharpness.

 

 

So a 1,5-6x42 of good quality is far better than a low quality 8x56.

But of the same quality the 8x56 wins on a low light situasion on 100 yards.

 

Regards Technika

 

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2007 at 14:14
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Originally posted by RifleDude RifleDude wrote:

I'm not a believer in the "twilight factor" number concept.



Do you also think that the earth is a disk?


Have you ever used the 72mm Zeiss and compared it against a 56mmor simlar scope?

A buddy of mine shot a boar that we both couldn't see with our 8x56 binos,
there IS a difference, it is up to the user to decide if it is worth the very high costs
and the aditional bulk.

Here in Germany it is forbidden to use NV aiming devices, so this is the next best thing to use.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2007 at 15:44
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Originally posted by pyro pyro wrote:

[QUOTE=RifleDude]
Do you also think that the earth is a disk?


Have you ever used the 72mm Zeiss and compared it against a 56mmor simlar scope?



The "twilight factor" number places too much emphasis on magnification.  It is the square root of the product of magnification X objective diameter.  I believe it is a bogus, largely meaningless number that doesn't take into account the quality of the optical system.  It also doesn't factor in the DISADVANTAGES to low light viewing of increased magnification, namely greatly reduced FOV and amplified optical aberrations.  I am not alone in this thinking.
http://www.birdwatching.com/optics/myths2006-9.html
I have never found increasing magnification to improve my ability to see in low light.  In fact, just the opposite.  I have never compared a 72mm scope to smaller objective scopes, but I have compared plenty of 56mm scopes to 42mm and 50mm scopes, and the bottom line is that the relative brightness between any two scopes always comes down to which one has coatings and optical design better optimized for low light.  A larger objective will transmit more usable light to the eye than a smaller objective up to a point, but the key to maximizing light transmission is matching the optimal objective size to the magnification.  A 7mm exit pupil provides the theoretical maximum amount of light transmission your eye can use.  As you go up in magnification, the image becomes increasingly dimmer, so it requires a larger objective lens to get the same amount of light transmission as the smaller objective at lower magnification.  At the exact same magnification, the larger objective lens will transmit more light, but a 10 X 72, 8 X 56 and 6 X 42 of equal optical quality will all transmit the same amount of light to the eye, period.   The  10  X 72 will only produce a larger image than the 6 X 42, not a  "brighter" image.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2007 at 15:48
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Originally posted by www.technika.nu www.technika.nu wrote:

The bigger the fronlens and the bigger the magnification the more light will pass through it.



Sorry, but that is incorrect.  The bigger front lens can transmit more light, but as you go up in magnification, the amount of transmitted light DECREASES, so you have to use a larger front lens to regain the amount of light transmitted.  Given equal optical quality, any two optics delivering 7mm exit pupil will transmit the same amount of light to the eye.  Beyond that point, increasing the size of the objective doesn't give a corresponding increase in light transmission.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2007 at 16:00
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I just cannot imagine to carry hunting rifle topped with a 72 mm tube. Last year I hunted boars at night in Poland with Diavari 50 mm, which was as bright as I needed. There is also issue of target recognition and I would never push limit to 72 mm, which IMO could give you a false sense of safe shot. Here at home, none of my rifles has bigger lenses that 42 mm this is all what I want at dawn and dusk. My two cents.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2007 at 16:07
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Originally posted by www.technika.nu www.technika.nu wrote:

Otherwise if the fact should have been the opposite and a 4x32 or a 6x42 or a 10x72 let through the same amount of light to the eye even a 1x7 or a 2x14 would allow the same amount of light to the eye.

In such case there would be no need of optics for low light hunting, but there is, mostly times you cannot see the animal with your bare eyes but there is no problem to see them with a good scope or binocular.

 



There is actually a LOSS of available light through an optic, even the best optics.  The finest optics on the planet cannot transmit 100% of available light, which is the theoretical maximum.  The best scopes and binoculars made transmit somewhere around 94% max.  What you are referring to is the effect of magnification, which enables you to see objects in low light you couldn't with your naked eyes because they appear closer.  However, past a certain point, increasing magnification does not improve your ability to "see" in low light because of diminishing returns and the tradeoff of reduced FOV and blurrier images of higher magnification.  This is another reason why the "twilight factor" calculation is basically a meaningless concept.

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