Which Thermal Unit

A place for all thermal spotter and riflescope questions and info
wiiawiwb
Posts: 26
Joined: 16 Sep 2017, 17:34
Location: In the forest

Which Thermal Unit

Post by wiiawiwb » 16 Sep 2017, 18:22

I am looking for a thermal to use solely when I backpack. The areas I go are wooded with some open areas near ponds. So, most of its use will be within a forest.

My purpose of the thermal will be twofold. One for general camp security so I can detect someone one or something coming. The other, is for entertainment and to see what is in the woods where I backpack.

No dealer is near me so I will have no opportunity to see before I buy. Initially, I thought about the Pulsar Quantum Lite XQ23V. It is reasonably priced. I've also considered the Pulsar Helion XQ30F. That would provide recording capability and easy transfer either by Wifi or USB. Recording would be possible with the Quantum XQ23V if I got a mini-DVR package.

I've never owned nor used thermals so I have no benchmark by which to make a decision. Any guidance or recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

spiralviral
Posts: 217
Joined: 27 Jul 2013, 21:23
Location: Aberdeenshire

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by spiralviral » 17 Sep 2017, 08:40

23v lite for blobs,
Helion for most other jobs!

Helion should hold its value better, as it gives more in terms of both user enjoyment and performance, but in the end - you pays yer money, and takes yer choice!
:thumbup:

curlew
Posts: 164
Joined: 12 Aug 2012, 08:04
Location: n.yorks

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by curlew » 17 Sep 2017, 13:21

i know you say thermal but it could be worth considering a good gen3 monocular - battery life is much better also better for walking around with , you will see anything alive better with thermal - just a thought

Muskett
Posts: 566
Joined: 17 Nov 2012, 12:52
Location: East Sussex Rabbit Warren

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by Muskett » 18 Sep 2017, 00:58

Gen 3 is poor through the trees as it requires either some strong starlight, moonlight, or ir help from an ir torch. You will enjoy Thermal.

The XQ38F seems to be the unit to buy at present. The quality of screen image is pretty great in thermal experience terms. I say thermal experience terms as its seeing heat not light and its like looking through a fine silk net curtain. But it finds stuff with heat; you will see even mice running about. Roosting birds and even bats flying. It shows the topographical terrain up well too so you can see your path as well as the hills in the distance. Thermal opens up a whole new way at looking at the world.
If you have the budget then you will enjoy it.

Its an investment for sure. If you find that you want to sell it on then the hit from driving off the forecourt is a bit harsh, so best to buy once, cry once, and keep it. Lesser units aren't a real saving as if you love the technology you will want to upgrade to the above anyhow. Spending thousands more only gets a little bit more performance but nothing radically better as the XQ38F seems to tick all the boxes and best of the compromises.

Give mini magnum on here a shout as he is a dealer and generally looks after his customers well.
Well thats my recommendation.

wiiawiwb
Posts: 26
Joined: 16 Sep 2017, 17:34
Location: In the forest

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by wiiawiwb » 18 Sep 2017, 05:31

I will always be using the thermal to scan while in a forest and expect the longest distance to be about 150 yards. Doesn't that argue for selecting a larger vs smaller FOV?

The XQ38F has a smaller FOV than the XQ30F.

phoenix
BRUCE ALMIGHTY
Posts: 4847
Joined: 09 May 2012, 14:40
Location: Aberdeen

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by phoenix » 18 Sep 2017, 07:33

You're correct, the Lite XQ30V has a slightly larger FOV than the Helion XQ38F.
However, all the reports suggest that the lite uses a poorer lens design and possibly a lower performance sensor, leading to a less clear image.
I'd definitely go for the Helion XQ38F.

Cheers

Bruce
LAND ROVER - THE WORLD'S WORST 4X4 BY FAR

curlew
Posts: 164
Joined: 12 Aug 2012, 08:04
Location: n.yorks

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by curlew » 18 Sep 2017, 10:48

i cant agree with this, "Gen 3 is poor through the trees as it requires either some strong starlight" - as gen3 is great in overcast and under heavy tree cover , i can see right into the shadowy areas , but i can agree with this - "You will enjoy Thermal"
i guess its personal preference but i would have a good gen3 first for general use ,then thermal second , but for spotting varmints then thermal is best.and i think a 1x or near to it might be best for your purpose as the fov is better

wiiawiwb
Posts: 26
Joined: 16 Sep 2017, 17:34
Location: In the forest

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by wiiawiwb » 19 Sep 2017, 16:11

To throw one more unit into the mix....how would the FLIR III 640 compare to the Pulsar Helion XQ30F?

Based solely only a few YT videos, I have not been too impressed with the clarity of FLIR 640. Not sure about other's experience. The FLIR 640 does not have onboard memory for recording nor Wifi but neither of those are a deal killer.

The FLIR 640 also has a wider FOV.

Any thoughts about how these two measure against each other?

phoenix
BRUCE ALMIGHTY
Posts: 4847
Joined: 09 May 2012, 14:40
Location: Aberdeen

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by phoenix » 19 Sep 2017, 16:26

The biggest problem with the FLIR units is that they are restricted to a refresh rate of 9 Hz (thank ITAR for that) while the Pulsar units have a refresh rate of 50Hz.
You need at least 25Hz for your brain to be tricked into thinking that what you're seeing is smooth continuous motion. 9Hz is OK for stationary targets, but as soon as you move the imager or the target moves, it all goes jumpy and blurry.
The FLIR640 has a 33mm lens, but because the 640x512 sensor is physically bigger than the 384x288 sensor in the Pulsar, the FOV is correspondingly larger.
There's a big price difference between 640 cores and 384 cores, but since they both use the same size pixels, you simply trade FOV for magnification.
384 cores are better value for money
If FOV is critical how about the Pulsar Helion XQ19F -it has 50% more FOV than the XQ38F.

Cheers

Bruce
LAND ROVER - THE WORLD'S WORST 4X4 BY FAR

wiiawiwb
Posts: 26
Joined: 16 Sep 2017, 17:34
Location: In the forest

Re: Which Thermal Unit

Post by wiiawiwb » 19 Sep 2017, 20:52

Thanks Bruce. I live across the pond and the 19F isn't sold in the states. Too bad because it looks good.

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