A night vision rifle scope is never going to be cheap. And the price of the best night vision scope might be enough to make your eyes water!
So it’s definitely worth taking your time before making an investment like this. Some of the big considerations you should make before settling on the best night vision scope for coyote hunting include:
- Do you plan to use your night vision rifle scope for scanning? Or will you use a thermal scanner?
- If using your night vision scope for ID’ing coyotes, what sort of range will it need to work over?
- Are you looking for a day/night rifle scope? Or pure play NV for night hunting?
There’s a fair few other things you might want to think about like the different features you might want/need. And, of course, your budget.
But not to worry! In this article we’ve reviewed the 5 best night vision scopes for coyote hunting that take all your possible needs into account!
Top 5 Best night vision scopes for coyote hunting
|Firefield Gen 1||3X42||Top notch battery||Click Here|
|Night Owl Optics||3x NV||Great night viewing experience||Click Here|
|ATN X-Sight||5-20x||Top choice overall||Click Here|
|ATN X-Sight II||3-14x||Value for money||Click Here|
|Bushnell Equinox Z||4.5x40||Top entry-level choice||Click Here|
Firefield 3×42 Gen 1 Night Vision Scope
Firefield is a relatively new but promising optics brand.
The Firefield Gen 1 has an LED illuminated reticle with an impressive battery life of up to 20 hours. It also has a brightness adjustment. It is a duplex reticle, which means that the crosshairs are thicker near the border to help you focus and thinner towards the middle to allow precision.
An infrared (IR) illuminator is something that any good night vision scope should be equipped with. An IR illuminator enhances vision in the night by emitting light in the invisible spectrum (think of night vision goggles or the CCTV footage of a dark room). A clear image is always important to hunt down a bootlegger.
It is an SFP scope best adapted for shooting at a fixed magnification. The riflescope also comes with a quick detach weaver mount system that allows you to rapidly detach and reattach your scope while maintaining zero.
The lightweight, weather-proof titanium body is a recipe for a convenient and reliable night-hunt buddy.
However, the scope is pretty large. You also might find yourself wanting for better illumination beyond a certain distance.
2. Night Owl Optics NightShot 3x NV Riflescope
Well, it’s hard not to trust a brand called Night Owl when it comes to night vision optics. Jokes apart, for further justification, Night Owl is one of the oldest players in this game and has spent years focusing on this niche.
The Night Owl Nightshot has a high res digital night vision display (640 x 480) to make sure you never lose track of your mischievous opponent. The display holds 6 reticle options, 3 white and 3 black to be able to suit any background. It also has a built-in infrared illuminator.
One interesting feature here is that the scope is designed to work with both, Weaver and Picatinny mounting systems, making it more versatile. Another unique point is that it can be used during the day with no problems.
This is an SFP scope, which is great because it has a fixed, 3x magnification. Now don’t let the magnification worry you, the champ has a range of up to 100 yards in the nighttime.
The scope might appear slightly longer than your average scopes with night vision. This is because of the rubber eyepiece, which blocks out any stray light while providing generous eye relief.
This is not a con, but keep in mind that the position of the windage and elevation turrets is inverted. The scope is also pretty light, which is always great, wild dogs or otherwise.
The one downside here would be the battery life of 3 hours, which is dramatically inferior to the battery life on the last scope.
3. ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Edition 5-20x Smart HD Day/Night Riflescope
ATN is another leading brand in the night vision optics industry. Although newer than a night owl, they wasted no time in dominating the industry. Let’s find out why.
The ATN X-Sight 4k pro has a remarkably high display resolution (1280 x 720), multiple reticles, and a 5-20x range of magnification.
It also allows for a one-shot zero so you can acquire your target quickly without having to struggle with the turrets.
Now that we’ve gotten all of that out of the way, let’s talk about the best part: The ability to record videos in real-time using recoil activation. The 4K Ultra HD sensor and dual-core processor make it possible to seamlessly record and play videos simultaneously. Despite this, the power consumption is ridiculously low – the beast has a battery life of up to 18 hours.
The 4K Pro also comes with a ballistic calculator and smart range finder to ensure that the odds are in your favor. It also offers recoil resistance for when you make your shot.
It’s Wifi and Bluetooth enabled, so you can connect it to any device you please. Last but not least, it’s weatherproof and shockproof just like any good scope.
Now, of course, these drool-worthy features come with a price tag. The cost of the ATN 4K Pro is almost double that of the previous two.
4. ATN X-Sight II Day/Night Vision Smart HD Technology Rifle Scope
Impressed by the last scope but didn’t like the price on it? Here’s another one from ATN. This time, at a friendlier price.
Since we’ve already read about the 4K pro, I can tell you that the X-Sight II shares most of its great features.
The ATN X-Sight II comes with a Ballistic calculator and smart range finder to make sure there is no margin for error. It also has recoil-activated video recording and WiFi screening that allows you to track your target remotely.
The high res display comes with multiple reticles and a 3-14x magnification. It comes with a standard IR illuminator. Other features include an E-barometer and an electronic compass.
The scope is Wifi and Bluetooth activated. The profile manager saves all your zero-in data to save the hassle. It has a 100 yard zero range.
The life of the battery stands at 6 hours, which is a lot less than its counterpart, but a reasonable compromise for the price. It also doesn’t allow a one-shot zero. Also, ultra 4k sensors are missing.
5. Bushnell 4.5×40 Equinox Z Digital Night Vision Monocular
Bushnell is a well-known US-based brand known for its reliability and affordability.
The Bushnell Equinox has a fixed magnification of 4.5x. However, it does have a 1-3x digital zoom that can bring the magnification up to 13.5x. It has a digital display that presents you with a black and white image during the night and a color image during the day.
Instead of your average intensifier tube, the Bushnell comes equipped with a micro LCD screen to give you the best vision possible. It has a strong infrared illuminator with a CMOS sensor. The brightness is adjustable to suit your level of comfort.
The monocular lets you capture images and record videos. Since it is not Wifi/Bluetooth enabled, the monocular has a USB port that lets you transfer your data onto your device. To save battery, the display on the monocular turns off automatically when unused after 10 minutes.
The lenses are fully multi-coated to minimize glare and maximize light transmission.
It’s a lightweight piece of equipment that can be operated with a single hand or mounted on a tripod.
However, the battery doesn’t last very long with the infrared illumination and the buttons might be hard to navigate in the dark.
How to Choose the Best Night Vision Scope for Coyote Hunting
You don’t need to use any heavy-duty bullets to hunt coyotes. And, although you may want good clarity & magnification for long range ID, you are unlikely to be doing any long range shooting. In general then, a night vision riflescope with average recoil resistance and eye relief should do the trick.
However, to make sure you get the best night vision scope for coyote hunting, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind.
There are 4 generations of night vision scope, with the 4th gen being the most modern and the 1st gen being the oldest. Out of these, Gen 2 and gen 3 are the most common and convenient night vision scopes for non-military purposes. Gen 1 night vision scopes are also available on the market, but you should keep in mind that they require some amount of light to function. There is no standard tube size and they’re most suited for short-range hunting.
We’re dealing with a tricky target here, so clarity is of utmost importance. Resolution is paramount when you’re hunting with tact. Since you don’t have the daylight to help you, your visual experience will depend almost completely on the scope. Pay attention to the recognition range of the scope.
This will tell you about the ability of the night vision scope to see in different moonlit conditions. The reticle is another crucial feature. Most scopes come with multiple reticles, so make sure you’re comfortable with at least 2 of them.
Most night vision scopes have a battery life of between two hours and 20 hours. Two hours is really not good enough for a digital night vision scope. Sure you can carry a few charged batteries with you while night hunting, but that’s extra planning and extra weight. It’s not the easiest thing in the world to change batteries in the dark… All in all, it is mighty inconvenient.
Obviously a better battery life almost certainly comes with trade offs; usually a higher price and possibly more weight. But when it comes to battery life for night vision equipment, more is almost always worth those trade offs.
Check if your scope has a built-in illuminator or the capacity to attach one. IR illuminators always help brighten up your vision and can be especially helpful on a moonless or overcast night. You can’t let the weather dictate you. It’s always wise to have infrared accommodation.
Weight, Size & Durability
Your scope might offer a great range, reticle, and image but prove to be useless if it’s too heavy for you to quickly get onto your target. A night vision rifle scope typically weighs between 1lb and 3lbs. Features that tend to affect weight include adjustable magnification and longer battery life.
Most night vision scopes for coyote hunting are a fairly standard size. 13″-14″ long and 2″-3″ wide.
Durability is also important. After all, it is the night and you’re bound to bump into stray items. Don’t buy a digital night vision scope that isn’t shockproof.
When it comes to choosing a scope for coyote hunting the right magnification will depend largely on how you want to use your night vision scope. If you’re just looking to use it to take short-mid-range shots, then you really don’t need a large magnification.
However, if you plan to use your night vision riflescope for ID’ing critters then you might want more magnification. This is especially true if you plan on ID’ing them from 1,000 yards out and calling them in.
Yes, you can use a thermal scanner to spot an animal that far out. But a lot of folks find it difficult to confidently make a positive ID at that range with a thermal and prefer the enhanced image sensitivity of a night vision rifle scope.
All that said, 3x magnification should be fine for most short range shooting. If you plan on using your night vision rifle scope for coyote ID as well, then you probably want an adjustable magnification (the 4.5x – 18x offered by the Pulsar Digisight Ultra N450 is a good example).
Fitting to Your Rifle
When choosing the best night vision scope for coyote hunting, you absolutely have to choose a night vision scope that will work with your rifle.
The best calibres for coyote hunting depend largely on whether you are doing strictly predator control or if you want to retain the pelt. For predator control, the hard-hitting .243 or a .222 is a good call. Many folks will want to keep the furs, though, in which case you are likely to be shooting something like a .22-250 or a .223.
All the night vision scopes on this list are compatible with the most common coyote hunting calibres.
Do I need a thermal scanner and a night vision scope?
No, you don’t need both a thermal scanner and a night vision scope. The best coyote hunting setup does probably does involve both a thermal scanner and a night vision scope. But obviously that ain’t cheap! You can just use lights. Also some folks prefer a thermal scope to a night vision scope.
That’s all the information you need to prepare yourself for one of the most thrilling night hunts of your life. Shopping for these scopes can be tricky since a night hunt comes with a completely different set of challenges that demand a new set of features. Since the quality of your vision is contingent completely on the scope you choose, the choice might become all the more intimidating. Still if you couldn’t find exactly what you were looking for, you might want check out our guide on Best night vision scopes under $500.
Now rest assured every product we’ve mentioned here is carefully chosen and worth the buck. You just need to need to choose according to the range and resolution you need for your area. The list consists of advanced scopes as well as entry-level devices to suit your needs. Tag him, we’re watching.