LAairhunter wrote: ↑
Sun Nov 03, 2019 6:59 am
I've been using Pulsar thermal and NV equipment (as well as other brands) for several years here in the US.
Pulsar in the US has a great reputation in terms of customer service, but this may have more to do with their US distributer (Sellmark). Pulsar's thermal devices aren't quite as good in terms of image quality as the Trijicon / IR Defense devices, but Pulsar offers the best "bang for the buck" amongst the thermal equipment offered here. FLIR has good stuff, but their customer service isn't too good, and (of late) they seem to have adopted an anti-hunter stance. There are some new thermals being offered by a company called N-Vision, and they're very good devices (particularly their Halo LR 50mm).
Pulsar's software is probably the best in the industry when it comes to on-board video recording, streaming to iOS devices, etc.
I see Pulsar as the Toyota of the thermal world, and I have no qualms investing in their gear.
Having said that, the Thermion XM30 (which isn't offered here in the States) is supposed to lack a focusing ring. For me, that would be a deal-killer. I have a FLIR PTS233, it lacks focusing, and I don't like that. Also, the Thermion XM30 wouldn't be a good choice for hunting beyond 100 yards. Here in the Southeast USA, most of our shooting is done within 100-150 yards (usually closer), and the XM38 is what we use.
Regarding point of impact shift, this was an issue a year or two ago on the Pulsar Trail models (that was rectified), but I'm not aware of it being an issue with the Thermions.
Lastly, I haven't mounted the Thermion on a Blaser yet, but when I do so, I'm thinking about using the Dentler mount system so that I can move the thermal between a Blaser R8 and an AR-15 / AR-10.
Agreed, this IS great information.
From an Australian perspective, forget about the Trijicon / IR Defense options, unless you have DEEEEP pockets.
The Pulsar gear is definitely best bang for buck, undoubtedly.
I'm using the older Apex XD50 and had no issues ever. I'm running an external 9 hour battery and the scope gets used pretty well weekly, and would not be without one now I've used one long term.
Scanning as a rifle scope is not an issue on a reasonable weighted rifle like an R8. Bloody heavy after a while on a Sako 85 Varmint!!!
As far as identification etc. goes, a lot of people talk about detection range, identification range etc.
Detecting "something" out to 1350m or whatever is great, and VERY useful, as you at least will be aware something is there.
As the thermal user gets accustomed to the gear, you get accustomed to your targets also.
You will soon be able to identify all sorts of animals at distance, simply based on shape and their habits.
At 1k it is easy to identify cattle, horses etc due to size and lack of movement. But there could be Deer in their as well, so a closer look is naturally required.
At the same distance, you could pick up smaller animals, like sheep, pigs, foxes and even rabbits.
When you get with a few hundred meters, things become much clearer.
Sheep are slow grazers and there coats will show up different than a pig, and pigs are also pretty well on the move.
Identifying foxes, rabbits, roos etc out to 300m is easy.
Bottom line is, that the more you observe these animals the more you learn about what they do and how they act. This raises the identification ability in bounds. So does a quality optic, and skimping on that is a waste of coin!!!!
Confirmed identification is the key to any shot, (like anytime), but unless you have good clear thermal, (like the dearer Pulsars), you don't take the shot.
Last week I spotted a Fox bedded down in the paddock. Terrain was mixed and I was 90% sure it was a fox. But due to the complete lack of movement it could have been a partially obscured Calf. So I moved closer. At no more than 50m away I still was not 100% and not prepared to shoot. I moved closer and with intent to get this thing moving, and it did. Confirmed to be a fox, which trotted away and bedded down again a couple of hundred meters away.
It was dead within 10 minutes and at no risk to the cattle I was there to protect.