Night Vision Phase One

Here’s the first wave! This central video will grow as each feature piece is added on. I’ve been working with night vision for years. Looking at different systems and solutions for different people and budgets. This series is going to lay out some of that in as simple a way as possible. There’s lots of details and specific scenarios when it comes to working in the dark, but my goal is to give you the basic understanding and present some comparisons. From there we can start to tackle the fun-stuff.

Stay tuned! Each companion piece will take us into deeper detail on it’s system and topic. And if you have any specific questions about NV gear and the dark, let me know!

Preview: An Examination of Night Vision Systems…

Coming soon! It’s no secret that in the past I’ve worked for companies that sold night vision. Now that I’m freelance and have free reign, I’ve been putting together a large scope project for several months. Now we’re quite close to seeing it come together, so this is your sneak peek.

Essentially, I’m looking to clarify NVGs and compare what you get for your money with different technologies. So I will be examining both image intensified and thermal night vision units, looking at a budget and mil-spec example of each. Expect lots of photos, videos, and a few words from me.

I’ll also talk about some beginner mistakes made with different forms of night vision, and examine scenario specific equipment. Getting the right gear for working in the dark is all about the kind of work you’re doing.

I’ve seen a few low light courses and instructors run very successful programs, but completely ignore the opti-electronic devices that are increasingly available. There’s nothing wrong with white light, but there’s a whole other world happening once you enter the IR spectrum. Stay tuned…

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Crimson Trace Midnight 3 Gun: I Will Be There

Crimson Trace 3 Gun Midnight Invitational TV-PressPass

There are only so many blog posts that can be written about the Crimson Trace Midnight match without using “shot in the dark” or “lights out” or similar “moons out goons out” phrases.

But the heart of it is: this looks like a really cool shoot, and I’m really excited to be participating.

Starting in 2012, the light & laser masters at Crimson Trace have hosted a 3 Gun match in Bend, Oregon. The entire event runs from sun-set to 3 am, which certainly ups the challenge.

Continue reading “Crimson Trace Midnight 3 Gun: I Will Be There”

FLIR LS64 Thermal Night Vision Monocular

The LS64 thermal imager uses the small chassis of the Scout PS32, which I’ve also used, and adds the high resolution and fast refresh-rate from the law enforcement cameras to create one of the most versatile thermal systems I’ve ever used.

On the outside it looks like a black version the PS24 and PS32 imagers. But on the inside it uses an unconventional detector size, a 640 x 512 VOx Microbolometer. That huge detection core allows the LS64 to zoom much further than traditional hand-held units.

The LS series rounds out FLIR’s Law Enforcement line, offering a lightweight alternative to the long range HS and BHS nightvision systems.

These are designed for police to be carried in a patrol car, but they’re available to general civilians. The battery lasted me a little over five hours, and I was able to comfortably detect and identify coyotes and people out past 300 yards.

FLIR PS32 versus Multicam Camouflage

One of the major advantages of thermal optics is that they ignore visual camouflage when scanning for heat.

We take a multicam camouflaged backpack with a hand warmer inside it, and lay it down in the grass. You can see the thermal vision highlight it in a way that your eyes just can’t do. Even with the camera image brightened and centered on the pack, it can be tricky to spot, but the FLIR PS32 unit calls it out instantly.

The thermal unit I’m using in this video came from this site: