I was lucky enough to be able to take out the new REAP-IR Mini Thermal Weapon Sight last weekend and also managed to get some video. This unit is a prototype but I would estimate it's about 90% functional. The first thing that I noticed was how much lighter the unit is than the MK II and MK III and also the superb image quality from the 35mm GASIR lens(see images below). I will most definitely be adding a REAP-IR to my personal setup as soon as they are available. I am used to the MK II and MK III turret controls, which overall are easier to use, but the QCM on the IR Patrol and REAP-IR allows for faster and easier access to zoom and calibration. I'm sure there will be lots of questions about REAP-IR vs MK II and MK III and so far it looks like it really comes down to your hunting style and what will work better for you. I also ran the REAP-IR on a helmet and it was not noticeably heavier than a Patrol. With the DLOC mount it was easy to remove the REAP-IR from my helmet and apply to my weapon in under 10 seconds without loosing zero.
I spoke briefly with IRD about this new GASIR lens and they informed me that the benefit to this type of lens does not contract and expand like a normal germanium lens. This allows them to mount the lens in the housing without the need for extra space to account for expanding and contracting. On the bottom of the REAP-IR objective lens housing there is a hole that leads to a channel that they pump full of some type of epoxy or potting material. That's a good thing because it suspends the lens and makes it much more recoil resistant especially when using heavier calibers.
Here is a video from a portion of the hunt below. Please keep in mind it was 95% or more humidity all weekend and as always it looks better through the scope. NOTE: IRD is aware that the thumb stick sensitivity is a little too sensitive and it will be adjusted accordingly. The over-sensitivity on the prototype causes the QCM to appear under recoil.
You will notice in some of the videos that the icons appear under recoil. This is caused by the thumb-stick moving and activating the icons. This was an issue early on when the REAP-IR was released, but there has been an update made to the firmware on all new REAP-IR units to incorporate a thumb-stick lock. When activated, the thumb-stick lock requires you to press in one time on the thumb-stick instead of up, down, left, or right to activate the thumb-stick. It's a feature you can turn off in the REAP-IR settings. The unit used in the videos was one of the very first REAP-IR units and just has not had the firmware updated to add the thumb-stick lock.