Buying Your First Thermal DeviceNight Vision
Should I Buy a Thermal Monocular or Thermal Scope First?
One of the most frequent questions that we get asked by customers who are looking at buying their first thermal device is “Which should I buy first – a monocular or a scope?”. Whilst the ideal answer is a combination of both, the reality is not everyone is able to afford this, especially in one hit.
Deciding between a thermal monocular and a thermal scope is always going to depend on your budget, needs and circumstances, but for the most part our recommendation is that you begin your foray into thermal with a thermal monocular – here’s why:
Remain covert while tracking:
A key benefit of using a thermal monocular or a thermal scope is that they allow you to become more covert and not alert your target to your presence, which is where traditional spotlighting has it’s biggest downfall. As thermal works by detecting the difference in temperature rather than amplifying ambient light like night vision, there is no need for any additional light source to detect and identify game allowing you to get closer to your target without being noticed.
Frequency, ease of use, versatility & safety:
Scanning and looking around for game with a thermal monocular takes far less effort than scanning with a scope, as monoculars are typically lighter than a scope and are much easier to carry, whether it be in your hand, in your pocket or around your neck. Spotting or scanning an area using a thermal scope when attached to a firearm not only goes against the first rule you’re taught when handling a weapon (don’t point it anything you don’t want to shoot), repeatedly lifting up your rifle will definitely cause fatigue over time.
A thermal monocular can also be mounted onto a vehicle or a tripod and streamed to a mobile device to be used when locating game, and it is much easier to mount and un-mount than a thermal scope, which would subsequently need to be re-attached to the firearm and re-zeroed.
Value for money:
Thermal monoculars tend to be better value for money than thermal scopes as each component within the scope must be recoil proof. This leads to a higher price per unit to have the same specifications as in thermal monoculars.
For most requirements and scenarios we generally recommended to buy a thermal monocular as your first thermal device rather than a thermal scope if your budget will not allow a combination of the two. A thermal monocular will provide you with the means to scan an area to detect your targets, as well as allowing you to get closer to them without being noticed. Pairing your thermal monocular with a Night Vision scope is a cost-effective means to cover all your bases, or if your budget permits, a thermal scope and monocular combination may be recommended. When in doubt – start with a thermal monocular.