Best Thermal Imaging Scopes For Coyote and Hog Hunting
The best time to go predator and hog hunting is during the night. However, since human eyes aren’t equipped for hunting in darkness, anyone who goes hunting at night needs a little help with either thermal optics or night vision.
- 1 A Review of The Best Night Time Coyote Hunting Thermal Imaging Rifle Scopes
- 2 See in the Dark
We will be focusing on how thermal optics can help improve nighttime hunting and some of the best products currently available on the market. Before delving any deeper, it’s worth noting that thermal imaging rifle scopes are typically more expensive than night vision scopes. However, they make zeroing in on targets a lot easier. And the fact that they still can be used during the day means you get to get the most out of your scope. The good thing about thermal rifle scopes is that they also incorporate video recording and a rangefinder as a bonus.
When night time hunting, you need a reliable optic that offers clear pictures in the dark, making it easier to spot coyotes, whose natural camouflage sometimes makes it hard to spot them. Apart from that, it would help if you had a scope that makes it easier for you to hit moving targets in the dark – and there is no solution better than a thermal sight.
However, it’s worth noting that there is bad news and good news here.
Bad news: these thermal scopes can be quite expensive.
Good news: you have plenty of options to choose from, which means you shouldn’t have a problem finding a scope that suits your budget and needs.
A Review of The Best Night Time Coyote Hunting Thermal Imaging Rifle Scopes
Let’s jump right into looking at some of the best thermal scopes you can find for Coyote and Hog hunting. The list is always updated to highlight the best sights and stay up-to-date.
Pulsar Core RXQ30V (1.6-6.4×22) Thermal Scope
The Best Coyote Hunting Thermal Imaging Rifle Scope
The Pulsar RXQ30V thermal imaging scope sits on the lower end of the thermal scopes price spectrum. However, don’t let the price fool you as this is a high-performance thermal scope.
First of all, its 1.6-times magnification is optical, which means you still get a crystal-clear image at the scope’s base magnification power. Furthermore, magnification, up to 6.4-times, is digital.
Its resolution of 384×288 is high enough that there’s little image quality degradation when using the scope’s digital zoom. Having a sufficient sight image resolution allows you to spot coyotes in the dark and shot accurately, even at the highest magnification.
Another thing worth noting about the scope is that it comes with a green sapphire display. The good thing about this display is that it maximizes image contrast while reducing eye fatigue.
Its thermal core is designed to detect heat signatures from targets 984 yards (900 meters) away. Interestingly, it still can detect thermal signatures much further than you can shoot. Honestly, you cannot outshoot the RXQ30V thermal scope.
Finally, the rifle comes with three (3) zeroes and three (3) rifle profiles. Apart from that, it also has a quick detach mount, which allows you to use it on multiple rifles.
Two CR123A batteries power the RXQ30V with decent battery life. However, you might find yourself having to replace the batteries quite often if you go night hunting a lot.
There is no other thermal scope that can beat the RXQ30V thermal scope at this price range. If you are looking for a product that’ll make hunting in the dark more straightforward, then this is the thermal scope to get.
- Its resolution is high enough that the scope’s digital magnification causes slight granularity
- Optical base magnification
- 900-meter (984-yard) thermal detection
- Mountable on three different rifles
- Features a green sapphire display that helps reduces eye fatigue
- Battery life isn’t that good
ATN Thor HD 640 1-10X
Best Thermal Imaging Scope for Video
The ATN Thor HD 640 is one of the most capable thermal scopes available in the market at the moment. The scope features an onboard video recorder that makes taking videos of your hunts simple, fast, and fun.
Hardware-wise, its magnification can go from 1 to 10-times zoom. Sadly, it has no optical magnification, which means its zoom is 100% digital.
Fortunately, its sensor has a resolution of 640×480. This resolution is high enough to minimize the scope’s digital zoom pixelation, which means users get clear images throughout its magnification range.
Furthermore, it comes with a ballistic calculator and a built-in rangefinder for accurate shooting in the dark.
One area where the Thor HD 640 prevails is in its video shooting capabilities. The scope’s camera allows users to take HD photos and record HD videos. The exciting thing about this scope is that it has a recoil-activated video setting, which will enable you to set the camera to start recording immediately you press the trigger.
The camera is also Wi-Fi-enabled, which means you can stream your hunting video to your tablet or phone.
The Thor HD 640 also comes with an external battery pack that offers up to 22-hours of non-stop use, which is more than enough for night hunting. Its internal battery, on the other hand, doesn’t last that long.
While the Thor HD 640 does not have many shooting features, it is an excellent thermal scope for filming nighttime hunting excursions.
- HD photo shooting and video recording
- Excellent magnification range
- The external battery pack offers exemplary battery life
- Recoil-activated video recording
- Built-in ballistic and calculator rangefinder
- Internal battery life isn’t that good
Armasight Predator 336 2-8x25mm by FLIR Thermal Imaging Rifle Scope
Best Value for Money Coyote Hunting Thermal Scope
The Armasight Predator 336 thermal imaging scope is a redesign of one of the best thermal imaging cameras available on the market at the moment – the FLIR Predator. The surprising thing about this scope is that it is quite affordable, considering the thermal camera core’s reputation.
The scope’s base magnification is all-optical, which means there is no pixelation at 2-times magnification. All magnification up to 8-times, however, is digital.
It’s worth noting that the scope has a 336×256 pixel array resolution with a display resolution of 640×480, which is high enough that it doesn’t distort or pixelate when using digital zoom. When zooming in, the image you get is clear enough to spot game and make precise shots.
Worth noting about the Armasight Predator 336 is that it has six color modes:
- Black hot
Three more variable modes allow you to customize your display for quicker and easier coyote spotting.
Furthermore, the scope has six reticle patterns:
- Cross center dot
- Line dot
- Dot 4 MOA
- No reticle
The good thing about this scope is that you can set the reticles to cyan, red, white, or black. That allows you to customize your aim to how you want it.
If you like to film your hunting outings, you will be glad to know that the Armasight Predator 336 comes with onboard video recording. The good thing about this is that you can use your hunting recordings to critique your hunting/shooting technique.
While the Armasight Predator 336 offers plenty of capabilities, a few areas, especially around quality control, fail; however, its shortcomings are quite rare. Fortunately, it does come with a return policy, which some customers have used.
Overall, the Armasight Predator 336 is an extremely customizable and capable thermal imaging scope suitable for hog hunting, coyote hunting, and all other types of night game shooting.
- Onboard video recording.
- Six color modes
- Six reticles, available in 4 colors
- High-resolution display and pixel array
- Good magnification range with 2-times optical magnification.
- Quality control issues – though they are relatively rare
ATN Thor 4 Smart HD 384×288 Thermal Imaging Rifle Scope
Best Compact Coyote Hunting Thermal Imaging Sight
The ATN Thor 4 Smart HD is built around Obsidian-IV Dual Thermal Core by ATN, which is one step above FLIR’s model.
The scope’s thermal sensor has a resolution of 384×288 and offers excellent contrast and clear images, making it easy to spot animals in the dark.
Its optical zoom is set at 1.25-times magnification while its digital zoom goes up to 5-times magnification – which isn’t as good as what some thermal scopes have to offer. However, what the ATN Thor 4 Smart HD lacks in magnification, it compensates in compactness.
It has a similar profile to that of a standard optical scope. And while it is larger than a glass optic, it is streamlined and will not add too much weight to your rifle.
Despite having a slim profile, the ATN Thor 4 Smart HD still includes a ballistic calculator and a built-in rangefinder to help users nail their long-distance shots.
This model, just like the Thor HD 640, is capable of recording high definition video and can also stream to any device while recording to an SD card. The fact that it’s Wi-Fi enabled means that you can use your phone or tablet as a viewfinder.
The scope’s internal battery is quite impressive, considering that it can run for up to 18-hours without requiring a recharge. If well maintained, you will never have to worry about your scope dying while in the middle of a night hunting excursion.
However, it is worth noting that the ATN Thor 4 Smart HD does have some software issues which often require assistance from the manufacturer to resolve.
Nevertheless, if you are looking for a thermal scope that is capable and compact, then consider getting the ATN Thor 4 Smart HD.
- 18-hour battery life
- Built-in ballistic calculator and rangefinder
- Simultaneous video recording and streaming
- Exceptional thermal sensor resolution
- Occasional software issues
Pulsar Trail XQ50 2.7-10×42
Best Thermal Imaging Scope for Long Range Night-Time Coyote Hunting
If you are looking to shoot some coyotes from a distance, then the Pulsar Trail XQ50 is the rifle for you. It packs both a powerful heat sensor and strong zoom capabilities.
With a base optical magnification of 2.7-times, you have enough zoom to aim accurately without forgoing short-range performance. However, its magnification range goes all the way up to 10-times magnification – but anything above 2.7-times zoom is digital.
Fortunately, its thermal sensor has a resolution of 382×288, which is high enough to ensure the images remain clear and crisp even at maximum digital zoom. You, therefore, should be able to aim and hit distant targets using the highest zoom.
To help you make those long-range shots, Pulsar has installed a sensor that can detect heat signatures from targets 1970 yards away – that is almost 2,000 meters. There is no way you are outshooting the thermal core on this scope.
The Pulsar Trail XQ50 also has 13 electronically-operated reticles for improved long-range capabilities. Apart from that, users can save up to three rifle profiles and five different zeroes for hot-swapping the scope between rifles.
Furthermore, it comes with an integrated rangefinder to help you make shooting calculations and has an onboard video recording feature that allows you to record your shots.
If there were any downside to this scope, it’d be that it comes with a stadiametric rangefinder. This type of rangefinder calculates range based on an object’s estimated size, which makes it less accurate than laser range finders.
And while the Pulsar Trail XQ50 costs a pretty penny, it gets the work done, especially when it comes to night time hunting.
- Integrated video recorder and rangefinder
- Powerful magnification range
- Five zeroes and three rifle profiles for use with different hand loads or on multiple rifles
- 13 reticle options
- Long-range thermal sensor
- It’s expensive
- The rangefinder is not super precise
See in the Dark
Thermal imaging scopes are perfect for nighttime hunting and showing off your hunting skills. Since they are more reliable than night vision scopes, these sights are what you need when going night hunting.
Now that you have seen the light, it’s time you got yourself a thermal imaging scope before heading out for some night time coyote hunting.