Well, I have finally decided to buy a thermal scope for my 6.8 SPC II to shoot some hogs. I see that the pricing is continuing to come down on thermal scopes, although they still aren't giving them away. At this point, I am looking at the Armasight Predator 336 2-8x25 (30 Hz) Thermal Imaging Weapon Sight, FLIR Tau 2 - 336x256 (17 micron) 30Hz Core. It's priced at $2,665 on Amazon. I realize that this is an entry level thermal scope but for my application, I believe it will work. Where I hunt, most of my shots would be about 100 yards and the furthest might be 165 yards.
My question for you thermal scope gurus would be what are the pros and cons of the Armasight Predator? Is there another thermal scope that I should consider near this price range? I appreciate any input and thank you guys in advance.
The Predator is an aluminum housed 25mm lens, 336 resolution, 1.6x native magnification, fixed focus, 30hz (or 60hz, but for more $) compact thermal weapon sight with features similar to the Armasight Zeus, based on a Flir Tau2, 17 micron core. Lots of color palettes that you won't use, 4 reticles, 4 reticle colors.
The Pulsar Apex HD38a comes in under $3K as well, polymer housed, 38mm lens, 384 resolution, 1.5x native magnification, objective focus, 50hz, longer thermal weapon sight, based on a Flir Tau2, 17 micron core, based on the IRIS core, 25 microns. Black or white hot, 10 reticles, 4 colors, reticle intensity can be changed, Picture in Picture capability and several other nifty features in the firmware.
Things to keep in mind is that higher resultion is better than lower resultion, bigger lenses are better than small, higher native magnificaiton is better than less (to a point, but these are nowhere near it), more hz are better than less. Fewer microns (pixel pitch) is better than more.
I think the Armasight is going to be a smaller, more sugged scope overall. In using both, I feel that the Pulsar has a better image and the polymer housing has will likely last beyond the utility of the scope. Both will get you out over 200 yards on a good sized hog, which is further than most people typically hunt. So both scopes are huntable scopes.
The Pulsar has the really cool picture in picture (PiP) mode that allows you a 3x minipicture inset into the 1.5x main view that is really great for helping with more precise aiming what at the same time maintaining situational awareness with a wider FOV. I REALLY LIKE THIS FEATURE. Here are some example vids I have done. Note that I have included information such as yardages so that you can have some idea of what can be discerned at what distances. I had the Armasight for longer and did more with it.
I believe these were actually the first hogs killed using the scope for sighting that were posted on Youtube... https://youtu.be/i2ucCWwFM5s
I had briefly looked at that Pulsar Apex but hadn't done a true 100% comparison on it and may have dismissed it prematurely solely because of price. It certainly merits more consideration.
While its a little more expensive that the Armasight, if I buy it from Amazon by tomorrow night, it will be $200 cheaper than the current stated price of $2,995. So its basically a push on the price compared to the Armasight Predator....decisions, decisions.
You know, I have made purchases in the past that I regretted, often because of incomplete information or buying into too much hype. I don't want to see folks doing that with thermals which are awfully expensive. The more information people have, the better.