APOD Firearms

AGM thermals?

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  • NEPrepper

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    Oct 21, 2023
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    my buddy has one off amazon. definitely a serviceable product
     

    popper

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    Apr 23, 2013
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    TS25-384 rattler. 75yds at feeder, no hogs seen. 4x gets pretty grainy. Yes it is in focus, ~60F outside. Software update changed base to 1.5, max is 16x which would be worthless.
    19700102021328.JPG
     

    Double Naught Spy

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    TS25-384 rattler. 75yds at feeder, no hogs seen. 4x gets pretty grainy. Yes it is in focus, ~60F outside. Software update changed base to 1.5, max is 16x which would be worthless.

    You seem pretty upset about this, so let's do the math. You have a 384x288 resolution (110592 pixels) with a native magnification of 1.5x on 1x zoom magnification.

    So you bump it to 2x zoom magnification. Now you have 1/4 the resolution. Some people think it is half the resolution because they doubles the magnification, but it is quartered as you are dealing with a 2D grid. For example if you have a 2x2 grid and divide by 2 on each axis as you would do visually, you now have a 1x1 block that is 1/4 and not 1/2 of what it was. So at 2x zoom magnification, you are effectively looking at 3x magnification, but with 1/4 of the pixels used previously, now a 192x144 resolution (27648 pixels).

    Now zoom to 4x (times). Your image is effectively 6x, but you are only using 96x72 resolution, or just 6912 pixels for the entire image. Of course it is getting grainy!

    Now zoom to 8x (times). Your resolution is 48x 36 or just 1728 pixels for the entire image. The image will look like crap by this point with 12x of effective magnification.

    16x (times)? You mean the PiP function when already zoomed to 8x and PiP is 2x (times) of the main image? The PiP is only a small part of the image, but if the whole image was zoomed to 16x (times), your view would be 24x, and your image would be comprised of only 432 pixels for the entire screen. That is will be an almost totally unusable image for anything more more than seen the general area of a target with no detail at all.

    The reason I asked about 16x is that this unit is only listed as an 8x unit, but with PiP.
     

    popper

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    Not really upset, just FYI. Posted the pic for others to consider. 4x is highest I'd ever use. Newest download gives 16x. Didn't have PIP on, no menu when I was using. I don't write their software. Date on screen is 1970?,I never set it.
     

    CavCop

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    Oct 2, 2016
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    Central TX
    640 or higher is the way to go now on thermals. There are some nice high end ones out there, but the lower cost 640’s work good for clarity. Higher digital magnification like 12-24x is almost useless in most situations.

    NVG’s for driving, and thermals for scanning with windows down. Windows, fog, etc will block thermals.

    AGM is decent. Thermals are great to help identify heat sources. More useful than NOD/NVG, and light does not blind them.

    IMG_3946.jpeg
     

    popper

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    The limiting factor is that for a 384 sensor, one pixel = ~one inch @ 100 yds. no matter what the magnification. The screen shows many pixels the same as the IR pixel. So divide your target into 1" squares, multiply that square 4.8 or 16 times so YOU can see it. Accuracy doesn't change. You can't hit closer than one inch! That feeder is about 2 1/2 ' tall so a big rabbit/coon is the size of the bright spot upper right above the feeder. NV scope have 3-4 times more sensor pixels so resolution is much better. Was watching a utube of a yote hunter- started he used IR to scan but usually a NV with light on his rifle. Interesting he said the light didn't scare off the yotes. Utube was several yrs ago, poor resolution at that time may have been his reason. Just FYI.
     

    DocBeech

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    Jul 6, 2023
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    Paradise
    I mean... some of those look really bad. Here is the image through a thermal we have that is 10 years old. The image you see is from around 700 meters away. For reasons I won't explain I am not able to show you the clarity of live targets and well they focus and ID in this device. So all I can share with you is some scenery.

    20170116_132135.jpg
     

    popper

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    Doc, appears to be a thermal clip-on behind a normal scope or a really high end IR (?). Yup optical magnification.
     

    DocBeech

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    And what 10 year old thermal is that?
    Yes.

    Doc, appears to be a thermal clip-on behind a normal scope or a really high end IR (?). Yup optical magnification.
    It is a thermal clip on. However I have seen some civilian models that are showing very high resolution. A friend of mine at Steiner/Burris let me play with the next gen one a couple months ago and they look absolutely beautiful. I would say take a look at what Burris is doing.
     

    easy rider

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    Jun 10, 2015
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    Didn't really expect to own a thermal myself, given the prices of a good thermal. I will say I'm very happy with my Armasight Contractor 320-6x24 with 50mm lens. What matters to me is being able to identify the object within my range. While I can Identify power lines in the dark at a quarter mile, my range is usually within 300 yards.

    Edit: also being 60hz is a bonus for movement.
     

    RiverRider

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    Dec 31, 2023
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    The only AGM I have ever owned or used was an Adder TS35-384. I found it very satisfactory and the only reason I got out of it was to gift myself a 640 thermal as a retirement present. I liked the more conventional form factor of the Adder very much and I found the controls and menus much easier to work. I've stuck with the conventional form factor since then, but now it's a Pulsar Thermion XP50 Pro (and it's heavenly).

    If anyone asks me about AGM thermals, I give them a thumbs up based on my very limited experience with them.
     

    Double Naught Spy

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    Thanks for the reviews. The debate on $$ vs utility is a tough one since I’ll only use it’s a handful of times a year.

    That is a very valid cost/benefit consideration. Is thermal really a good value for your situation?

    I know several folks that have digital night vision rifle scopes that cost anywhere from $400-900 and are shooting coyotes at 200-250 yards with the IR illuminators that came with the optic (versus a very powerful Coyote Cannon IR light). With the money they saved, they have a small thermal handheld for scanning, because who wants to be waving a rifle around all night to see?

    So you use the small handheld to spot hot targets (animals) and if you can't ID them well enough with your handheld thermal, then you can get a positive ID with your rifle's digital nv. That is the system I used for years.

    If you are only hunting a few times a year, if it is primarily open terrain, digital NV might work well for you.
     

    RiverRider

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    With the money they saved, they have a small thermal handheld for scanning, because who wants to be waving a rifle around all night to see?

    So you use the small handheld to spot hot targets (animals) and if you can't ID them well enough with your handheld thermal, then you can get a positive ID with your rifle's digital nv. That is the system I used for years.

    If you are only hunting a few times a year, if it is primarily open terrain, digital NV might work well for you.


    That is sooooo true. If I was breaking into night hunting knowing what I know now, that's the approach I'd take.

    I'd sooner give up my thermal scope and go back to DNV, or even a green kill light mounted on the gun before I'd give up my thermal scanner. I wish I'd been properly schooled on it before I started spending money on night hunting stuff.
     

    Double Naught Spy

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    I'd sooner give up my thermal scope and go back to DNV, or even a green kill light mounted on the gun before I'd give up my thermal scanner. I wish I'd been properly schooled on it before I started spending money on night hunting stuff.

    That is part of the reason I like reviewing night optics and seeing what is what. I made a couple bad decisions as well, one of which was pretty costly. A lot of this stuff is a significant investment.

    I go back to digital NV every so often and it has improved over the years, but still has the same photonic barrier shortcomings (light reflected back to the scope causing whiteout) as the older units or regular NV using an IR illuminator. Recently, however, I tried digital NV for beaver hunting and really like it. Some day, I hope to get into ratting and that seems to be largely a night vision pursuit (though some are using thermal).

    But yeah, I won't be trading in my thermal anytime soon.
     
    Every Day Man
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