Thermal vision products can be rather confusing at first glance, a lot of technical info that means not so much but has a big affect of price! This guide we hope will make things clear!

Photo above from a Lynx 10mm Pro on dark heat mode

See the HIK range here

Thermal Basics

Visible light - is what we see with our eyes during the day (and in a limited way at night) "Night Vision" products work by intensifying this light to allow our humble eyes to "see" visible light when it is dark. How well this works depends on how light there is to intensify. NV would not work at all in an enclosed box for example. Whereas thermal would.

Thus when we talk about thermal vision it's is important not to make the mistake of thinking of it only as "thermal night vision". Thermal works in a way that our eyes simply do not. Heat emitting objects literally jump out against their background no mater how well camouflaged they are

This does mean that yes, thermal is superb at night for sure but can be equally as useful during daylight, when for example, surveying a cluttered, overgrown area looking for skulking critters

Important also before moving on to make it clear that thermal does not replace light intensifying night vision technology in your kit. NV also has it's place in that it can give a sharper and more precise image that you can hunt to.

Ideally, budget allowing you use both. Thermal to detect that "something is there" and then NV scope to get in there in detail.

Other thermal uses - Dog owners take note

Tracking - injured animal blood trails - the HIK "Red Hot" option is brilliant for tracking such especially in colder conditions. Though if it is hot and there is a lot of rock about there will be "noise" Fine tuning can help filter,

Where is the poo?

Ever been out with your dog(s) maybe in autumn and they do one at a distance in an area where you really want to pick it up (like in your garden!)....lets call it a brown on brown incident. Whip out your monocular which you have in a pocket (obviously) and the poo stands out like a shining beacon. Red marks the spot! Now that's useful tech 😂

Now on with the guide to the technology and terminology - To recap

Electromagnetic Energy

Thermal Fundamentals

Visible technology need a light source (e.g. Sun, bulbs) to emit radiation which is reflected on an object. This reflection is what we see with our eyes.  

The Thermal Advantage

The Thermal Camera Technology

A thermal camera consists of many components to get a thermal image from the heat radiation of a scene.

Lenses for thermal cameras are typically made of Germanium (Ge)

The Detector

How this relates to resolution

The bigger the number the better the resolution as each images contains more information which = better image quality and details - But also higher cost!

Focal Length

This is the distance from the center of the lens to the principal focal point of the lens. As the lenght changes the amount of subject captured by the lens changes. Again bigger = better in terms of image quality/detail and critically distance the device can effectively operate

How this relates to HIK product naming

So for example the Lynx C06 is the entry level and Owl Q35 is the top (35 not on this image but is in the range)

And in real terms how does this affect affective use range? Easier to show than say

HIK models and their best practical uses

Distances based on deer sized object. So for example, for a rabbit sized target the effective spotting/identification range will be less

See the HIK range here

See the HIK range here

See the HIK range here

See the HIK range here

See the HIK range here