Best Gen 3 Night Vision Scope

Gen 3 night vision scope comes with top-notch optics quality, so who wouldn’t want to have them? The night optics technology designed in these scopes offers incredible performance and great results. This technology is primarily used in the United States Armed Forces, but it is legal for citizens to own and operate it.

Suppose you are a hunter, target shooter, sailor, survivalist, wildlife enthusiast, astronomer, security agent, or you own a security agency. In that case, this technology will be useful for you, especially when working at night.

Hunters use night vision technology to target their prey, and wildlife researchers employ the tool in studying nocturnal animals like wild hogs and coyotes.

The Gen 3 Night Vision scopes are lightweight, portable, and easy to carry. If you need a high-quality night vision scope to add to your weaponry, consider getting a Generation 3 night vision optic. Regardless of your budget, this article lists the best Gen 3 Night Vision Scopes to use right now.

Best Gen 3 Night Vision Scopes

1. AGM Wolverine Pro-6 3AL1 Gen 3 NV

The Wolverine Pro-6 3AL1 from AGM is one of the best Gen 3 night scopes ever designed. It comes with a magnificent 100mm objective lens. As you know, the larger or bigger the size of the objective lens, the clearer you see images. This scope’s 100 mm objective lens lets you view images perfectly, even in dim light. Thanks to its large aperture, you get more ambient light transmitted through the optic.

It comes with an autogating feature along with excellent accuracy. You are always sure to shoot with precision thanks to its fast target acquisition and adjustable, projected reticle. The 6x magnification of this device means you can magnify an image up to six times. The AGM Pro-6 scope is mountable, so you can mount it on any rifle you choose. It is powered by two AA batteries that give you up to 40 hours of use.

The chevron reticle has a windage crosshair, bullet drop, and ½ MOA adjustments. The lens system of this optic is designed to refresh image quality constantly, so you won’t notice any negative effects when inspecting and shooting around dynamic light.

Moreover, it is designed using high-grade aluminum, which makes it incredibly solid and sturdy. In addition, it is water-resistant, so you won’t have to worry about using it while it is raining. It offers long-range detection; if that is what you need, you can try out this model.

The only drawback of the AGM Wolverine Pro-6 3AL1 is that it is heavy, but this won’t be a problem for you if you can handle the weight. This optic is incredibly useful if you are looking for a dynamic and fast night vision scope with long-range detection.

Pros
  • Great image quality.
  • Aluminum build.
  • 6x magnification.
  • Autogating.
  • Long-range detection.
  • Projected chevron imaging.
  • 40-hour battery life.
Cons
  • It is heavy.
  • Expensive.

2. AGM PVS-14 3NL3 Gen 3

One of the interesting features of the AGM PVS-14 3NL3 Gen 3 is that it doesn’t allow objects to go unnoticed or stay covered in the dark. It gives you a clear and bright image of objects in the dark. The exterior of this scope features a sturdy and rugged design that will surely last long.

Since it is waterproof, you can be sure it is built to stand the test of time. The durable design, coupled with the waterproof coating of the scope, makes it easy for you to use it outdoors, even in severe weather conditions like rain.

It is designed with a 26mm lens coupled with an F/1.2 aperture. The focus range of the PVS-14 scope is 0.25m to infinity, which is broad. The 26mm lens and F/1.2 aperture further offer an improved, faster auto-focus function. The magnification provided by this scope will also give you a clear image of objects that are far away.

The IR illumination combined with the flood lens will give you great clarity and understanding of the creatures moving at night.

This scope was designed to be easy to use. Anyone can easily mount this scope on their weapons and firearm. You can also mount it on your helmet or the top of your head, depending on how you want to use it.

Another interesting function of this scope is that it has several automatic features such as bright light power off and automatic shut off.

Pros
  • Rugged exterior.
  • Lightweight.
  • Easy to use.
  • Waterproof design.
  • IR illuminator.
  • 26mm lens.
  • Automatic shut off.
Cons
  • It is pricey.

3. ATN X-Sight 5-20 4K Pro Smart

The ATN X-Sight 5-20 is a powerful optic suitable for day and night use. It features an ergonomic design and a weatherproof exterior, making it handy in harsh weather.

This scope features a ballistic calculator, multi-pattern reticle, and incredible HD optics. You get true HD resolution and great color and image quality of objects. The X-Sight 5-20 4K allows you to capture or record videos and has streaming capabilities. It has an SD card slot, so you can attach an SD card to save video records of your amazing hunting adventures.

This scope features ATN’s Dual Core Processor, which gives you an immersive experience to stream video record via Wi-Fi on a smartphone or store the video stream on your SD card. It gives you optimal performance, so you won’t notice any loss or lagging issues.

You can use the ballistic calculator in this scope to get accurate measurements and calculations of the area.

The battery of this scope is incredibly solid, and it lasts up to 18 hours of use. The design of this ATN night vision scope will surely fit any rifle or firearm with 30mm rifle scope rings. Overall, it is reliable for night and day hunting.

Pros
  • Weather-resistant design.
  • HD video resolution.
  • Ballistic calculator.
  • Usable at night and day.
  • Video recording feature.
  • Video streaming capability.
Cons
  • Expensive.

4. Sightmark Wraith 4K Max 3 Digital Night Vision Riflescope

The Sightmark Wraith scope is designed with a durable, strong aluminum body that can resist the elements. The sturdy design of this digital riflescope ensures the durability of the scope. It comes with a 3x to 24x magnification and ten different reticle options.

Furthermore, it comes with an 850nm infrared illuminator that gives you a vivid, bright image of the area. It is worth noting that this scope features an ultra-high definition digital CMOS sensor that can locate and track objects as far as 300 yards.

This Wraith 4K Max 3 riflescope offers exceptional performance in night and daylight conditions. It includes a built-in rechargeable battery that lasts up to 8 hours.

Pros
  • Durable aluminum design.
  • Powerful, rechargeable battery.
  • Clear images,
  • 3x – 24x digital magnification.
  • Ten reticle options.
  • A color mode for daytime.
Cons
  • It is heavy.

5. Superior Tactical PVS-7 Gen 3 A-Grade

The Superior Tactical PVS-7 Gen 3 A-Grade scope is a military-grade night vision optic that gives you excellent clarity to see objects more clearly. It comes with an F/1.2 aperture that gives you increased control over the focus. It features a bright light cut-off that magnifies bright images without damaging the device.

One of the impressive features of this Superior Tactical PVS-7 scope is its incredible battery life which lasts up to 50 hours on a single charge. This feature will be helpful for hunters who will be in the field for days. With the powerful battery, anyone can use this scope for up to 5 days.

It also has a low battery indicator that notifies you when the scope is low on power. Another benefit of this scope is that it is weather-resistant and waterproof. It features a durable exterior crafted to last, and this device is not likely to be damaged by water or the elements.

The PVS-7 Gen 3 scope can easily be mounted on rifles or used as handheld binoculars. It is affordable and can be purchased for a low price. For affordable gen 3-night vision scope, you can always bank on the Superior tactical PVS-7 scope for optical clarity and quality.

Pros
  • Powerful battery life.
  • Sharp lens system.
  • Easy to use.
  • F/1.2 aperture.
  • Weather-resistant and water-resistant design.
  • Low battery indicator.
Cons
  • Low magnification.

6. Luna Optics Digital LN-G3-M50

If you want a scope that can last and resist several weather conditions and elements, you would be glad to use the Luna Optics LN-G3-M50. Amazingly, this scope has an IR illuminator and a 6x magnification, providing a bright, clear image of your target from up to 400 yards.

The scope features a 12.2 MP camera that gives you vivid visuals of objects. Moreover, it is incredibly useful in dark and low-light conditions. The lightweight design increases the portability of the device. Since it comes with a string, you can hand it around your neck and carry it around.

It is easy to use as it has only three settings; a night vision green image, black and white color combination, and full color. You can easily adjust the settings and change the color mode depending on when you want to use it.

Pros
  • It is affordable.
  • 12.2 MP camera and 6x magnification.
  • Lightweight design.
  • Includes three settings.
Cons
  • It cannot be mounted but is handheld.

7. Bestguarder 6x50mm HD Digital Night Vision Monocular

This Bestguarder Digital Night Vision Monocular has a 6x magnification that lets you view objects clearly. Various hunters rely on infrared illuminators to scan and monitor activities at night and in dim environments.

Thankfully, this optic has infrared illuminator technology to give you a bright and sharp image of the activities in your present environment. The built-in infrared illuminator installed on this device can reach a viewing distance of up to 1150 ft/250m.

If you are a late-night shooter or hunter, this scope will be useful as it will help you monitor the happenings in your area.

The Bestguarder 6x50mm HD Digital Night Vision Monocular is a versatile scope that can be used as a live infrared surveillance camera. Since it runs on batteries, you can always recharge them when they are down. You can record videos, save photos with this scope, and stamp the date and time.

Pros
  • Multipurpose night vision scope.
  • 6x magnification.
  • Easy to use.
  • Great for night use.
  • Clear and bright visuals.
  • Infrared illumination.
Cons
  • Battery life should be improved.

8. ATN NVG7-3 Gen 3 Night Vision Goggle

The ATN NVG7-3 Gen 3 Night Vision Google gives impressive features, such as a 50-hour battery life and a viewing distance of over 150 yards. It provides a mounting system, which you can use to mount on your helmet, rifle, or firearm for a better experience.

It is well-built and designed for durability. This device can resist all weather conditions, and you can use it in any weather condition, including rain, without worrying about damaging it. It is water-resistant and fog-proof.

It comes with a diopter adjustment with a range of -6 to +5 alongside the IR technology, giving you a clear picture of your targets, even in low-light conditions. Another feature in this model is the auto-brightness feature, which optimizes the display’s brightness.

The reliability of this night vision helmet from ATN cannot be overemphasized as it comes with a long battery life and durable design. This device appeals to hunters and individuals looking for top-notch military equipment to purchase.

Pros
  • Waterproof design.
  • Mountable on a scope.
  • Fogproof.
  • Auto brightness feature.
  • Long battery life.
  • IR technology.
Cons
  • It is expensive.

9. ATN X-Sight 5-18 Smart Riflescope

The ATN X-Sight 5-18 Smart Riflescope provides hunters and riflemen with clear and bright image quality. The excellent image quality of this scope can help you track every step and movement made by your prey. Apart from hunters, this tool is popularly used by shooters, researchers, and wildlife enthusiasts.

This monocular offers everything a wildlife researcher needs to study animals and other creations in detail. It comes with a built-in Wi-Fi system that you can use to connect to a desktop computer or smartphone.

The ATN X-Sight 5-18 lets you take photos and record videos in 1080P HD at 30 fps or 720p at 60 fps. It is not created for night use only but can also be used in the daytime. This scope has one of the best objective lenses ever seen, which is why it is incredibly popular among hunters and wildlife enthusiasts.

Pros
  • Clear images and visual display.
  • Flexible and versatile.
  • Built-in Wi-Fi.
  • 1080P full HD resolution.
  • Video recording.
  • Geotagging.
Cons
  • A bit heavier.

10. AGM Model PVS-7 3NL3 Gen 3

One of the remarkable features of the AGM PVS-7 3NL3 Gen 3 Scope is that it features an extremely durable design. The sturdiness of the exterior is unquestionable as it is constructed using high-quality materials that are strong enough to withstand the harsh effects of the wind. Also, it is water-resistant, making it suitable for windy and rainy hunting sessions.

The AGM PVS-7 3NL3 Night Vision Scope features an IR illuminator with a flood lens. It also offers a 27mm lens of F/1.2 aperture coupled with a 1x magnification. The optic gives you clear visuals to see far-away objects as they are near.

It provides a long-lasting battery that lasts consecutively for over 30 hours. It has a diopter adjustment from -6 to +2 and other noteworthy features. Other features you will find in this model are the automatic power-off feature, bright light cut-off, and automatic brightness control.

The downside of the AGM PVS-7 3NL3 Gen 3 night vision scope is its high price tag. If the price is not a stumbling block, you can invest in this night vision device. By purchasing this scope, you are investing in a durable, waterproof, and sturdy night vision scope that will be used for several years.

Pros
  • Diopter adjustment.
  • Powerful battery life.
  • IR illuminator.
  • Waterproof design.
  • Durable, rugged design.
  • 27mm lens and F/1/2 aperture.
  • It can be mounted on the head.
  • Automatic brightness control.
  • Automatic power-off feature.
Cons
  • Expensive.

11. Luna Optics LN-G3-M44 Gen 3 Night Vision Scope

The Luna Optics LN-G3-M44 is another quality Gen 3 Night Vision Scope you can purchase today. It boasts a sturdy construction and sports a compact, lightweight design. The compact size allows you to carry it with ease, and you won’t have challenges taking it wherever you want to use it.

It features a widescreen AMOLED-Q display that produces clear images and a fast response time. Also, it offers a 12.2 MP camera with three settings: black and white, night-vision green, and full color.

Amazingly, the Luna Optics LN-G3-M44 offers an IR illuminator with increased focus and visuals of up to 200m. It has a 5x magnification and an electronic zoom feature that can magnify your images up to 30x.

This scope is best suited for anyone who wants to purchase a high-quality gen 3 night vision scope at an affordable price.

Pros
  • Strong construction.
  • Budget-friendly.
  • Compact size.
  • Lightweight design.
  • 5x magnification.
  • 12.2 MP camera.
  • AMOLED-Q display.
Cons
  • It is not water-resistant.

12. Bushnell Equinox Z Digital Night Vision Monocular

The Bushnell Equinox Z Digital Night Vision Monocular has a rugged exterior that prevents the eyepieces, lenses, and other internal parts from breaking or being damaged after a fall. This scope has solved the problems and challenges of many hunters. Little wonder, it was ranked among the best digital night vision scopes.

It features a 30mm objective lens that helps research, scan, hunts, and view targets at night. The objective lens is multicoated for durability. The multicoated exterior and hard exterior make this scope to survive a fall that is capable of ruining it. It comes with image and video capture and can be useful for long-range hunting of up to 1000 ft.

It features an infrared illuminator and an adjustable IR brightness to use. The infrared illuminator provides a wide view of over 250 yards. This scope is also easy to carry due to its lightweight design. It is worth noting that it has a lens of 40mm and a 4.5x magnification. Since it is waterproof, you can be sure of using this scope in wet and moist conditions.

The AA batteries included in the package are strong and guarantee users of extended use. It also comes with a tripod that you can use to mount your weapon on it. Overall, the build quality of this Bushnell night vision monocular is pretty impressive.

Pros
  • Exterior coating.
  • 30 mm objective lens.
  • Great for long-range detection.
  • Infrared illuminator.
  • Adjustable IR brightness.
Cons
  • On/off button are close to other buttons.

Factors To Consider When Buying a Gen 3 Night Vision Scope

Finding the best Gen 3 Night Vision Scope for your needs isn’t just about finding one that fits your budget. If you want to purchase a Gen 3 scope, you would want to consider what purpose you want to use it for.

Gen 1 scopes are affordable and typically cover a 100-yard distance using infrared illumination. On the other hand, Gen 2 devices use a microchannel plate (MCP) to magnify your view and give you a clear picture of targets over a range of 200 to 500 yards. The Gen 3 scopes work similarly to the Gen 2 models but use gallium arsenide coating to increase the image quality. Even in bad and severe weather conditions, these scopes can give you a clear and bright image from over 600 yards away.

When buying a Gen 3 night vision optic, you typically want to get a certain degree of performance from it. If you don’t know how to find the perfect Gen 3 night vision, I will help you make the right choice.

Construction

One of the first things to consider when buying a scope is to ensure it has a strong and durable case. As a rule of thumb, it must be waterproof and have an all-glass, multi-coated optic.

Weight and Size

A scope may appear too portable and lightweight; however, the weight will influence how long you can hold it up to your eye level. Depending on the weight of the scope and extra components mounted on your rifle, it can strain your hands. That said, you also want to consider the size of the scope by ensuring it is compatible with your rifle or firearm.

Eye Relief

Whether you are wearing glasses or not, you want to ensure that the scope doesn’t strain your eyes but provides maximum relief. Choose a scope that gives you eye relief. The more eye reduction your scope offers, the better for you.

Ensure you get a scope that has a sharp, comfortable lens. The lens and eye relief the optic provides shouldn’t be underestimated because you will use it for a long time. If the lens hurts your eye or adversely affects your vision, then it’s useless.

Gen 3 Tubes

When you use Generation 3 scopes, you will find some disparities between the tube and photocathode between the different products and models. You may find several tubes and components installed or removed, which can likely influence the optic’s overall photocathode sensitivity and tube performance.

Some of the tubes you will find in gen 3 scopes include:

  • Autogated.
  • Pinnacle tube.
  • Thin filmed.
  • Gallium Arsenide (GaAs) tube.
  • Unfilmed/filmless.

The Unfilmed/filmless is sometimes touted as a Gen 4, but since there is no Gen 4 scope currently, it is marketed under the Gen 3 or Gen 3+ class. It all depends on the company’s way of classifying or marketing its night vision optics to disclose features of its products based on the tube or photocathode’s performance and specifications.

Autogating

Autogating is a feature seen in only gen 3 scopes; however, not all Gen 3 night vision scopes come with the autogating feature. The autogating technology is what allows the scope turns on and off automatically.

This feature helps reduce impulsive noise, regulate the photocathode voltage duty cycle, protect against bright light, and enhance overall IIT performance.

Figure of Merit

The Figure of Merit is calculated by multiplying Signal-to-Noise-Ratio (SNR) by resolution (line pair/millimeter). The lp/mm is an analog yardstick, which is still applied today to measure and determine the clarity of the imaging quality. The FOM gives an insight into the tube’s quality and performance.

In the same vein, most countries use this value to know if the product can be exported. Any value above 1400 is non-exportable. Since photocathode sensitivity can improve Signal-to-Noise-Ratio, a high FOM can be used to determine the top-quality night vision scopes.

Signal-to-Noise Ratio

Different kinds of noises will try to affect your image clarity, so if your scope has a noise reduction feature, you can use it to minimize these interferences.

Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) is connected to other features like autogating, figure of merit, MCP operating voltage, photocathode sensitivity, etc. This is why thin-filmed and filmless tubes, autogating, and sensitive photocathode scopes have a better SNR value than lower-generation night vision scopes.

Signal-to-Noise Ratio is also a good indicator of low-light performance, considering resolution and contrast. The higher the SNR, the better the imaging quality it provided, even under extremely tight or difficult observation conditions. Consider buying an optic with an SNR value of 21 and above.

Resolution

Resolution determines the clarity and image quality provided by a night vision scope. So if you are looking for a high-quality night vision scope with the best resolution, you should first determine the image quality after looking at the resolution.

Most Gen 3 night vision scopes offer 64-72 lp/mm resolutions, so your scope should be within this range. It is important to note that resolutions aren’t exclusive to a specific generation. You can have a Gen 2 or Gen 2+ resolution that gives you what you would get from a Gen 3. Still, the resolution is an essential factor to consider when choosing a Gen 3 NVD.

Magnification

Magnification refers to the capability of the scope to zoom in on your target. For instance, if you get a scope with 6x magnification, you can zoom up to six times.

Field of View

Field of View (FOV) is the amount of space or distance that can be seen with the optic. The FOV is expected to reduce as the magnification is increased. So if you zero in on a potential target, the FOV will reduce. The Field of View is measured in feet per 100 yards.

Gain Control

If you buy a scope with an automatic gain control feature, the screen or image brightness will change automatically depending on the present conditions of the area. However, if your device doesn’t provide this feature, you can manually adjust the brightness to your preferred level.

Batteries

When choosing a scope, it is important to consider its battery life. Do you prefer a scope with a rechargeable battery or one that lets you carry spare AA batteries? Which of these options will be convenient and okay for you?

Gen 3 Night Vision Applications

Virtually everyone knows why and what the United States military uses Gen 3 scopes for. What do you intend to do or achieve with Gen 3?  If you don’t know the benefits of using a Gen 3, the possibilities are pretty endless!

A Gen 3 optic is incredibly versatile as it can be used for different purposes, including hunting, inspection, security & surveillance, SHTF prepping/survivalists, patrol & stakeouts, law enforcement duties, and more.

With that said, you need to choose the Gen 3 night vision scope that is suitable and appropriate for your applications. Will you need other applications from one device? Do you need a device to move between several rifles? Will you need a clip-on if you intend to leave the day scope on?

  • Monocular: It must be used with a laser sight or collimated red dot. It should provide maximum eye relief and must be mountable to a weapon.
  • Standalone scope: It must come with a reticle and adjustments and must be zeroed. It is recoil-proof and made to work without an additional optic.
  • Clip-on: Since it doesn’t have a reticle or adjustments, it must be used with either a daytime riflescope or a collimated red dot. It can be placed on the rail or paired with the objective bell of a daytime scope. It may be costlier than standalone scopes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you see deer antlers with night vision?

You can see deer antlers using your night vision scope.

Is thermal vision better than night vision?

Many people prefer night vision scopes to thermal scopes because thermal scopes are more expensive to buy.

Thermal and night vision scopes work well in different environments. For instance, if you want to hunt in pitch-black areas, you should use thermal scopes. Also, thermal scopes are good at detecting targets and objects. On the other hand, night vision scopes perform well in dimly lit or low-light areas.

You can choose a night vision or thermal scope depending on how you want to use them. A thermal scope is ideal if you like hunting in thick bushes. A night vision optic isn’t designed to see through the bush, but it will detect the heat source of prey hidden in the bush.

Overall, a night vision scope is mostly preferred and used by many hunters because they provide a cleaner and better image quality.

What is the highest generation night vision?

The Gen 3 night vision is the highest at the time of writing. Unfilmed/filmless night vision may be marketed as Gen 4, but this isn’t an official classification. Generation 3 night vision is appropriate for professional use, and they are used by the military and law enforcement agencies. Although expensive, they offer high-quality images, clarity, and better IIT performance.

What Generation night vision does the United States military use?

The United States military force uses the Generation 3 Night Vision, and that’s the standard.

How far can Gen 3 scopes see?

Gen 3 scopes offer the crispiest and clearest image quality with high resolution. These scopes clearly show images as far as 400 yards and above.

Are Gen 2 Scopes Worth It?

Although Gen 2 scopes lack the capabilities of a top-quality Gen 3, they can be a great tool in your hands. They come with improved features from Gen 1.

Some Gen 2+ devices can match and even outclass some Gen 3 models. However, you are advised to go for a Gen 3+ if you can afford it because it provides the best night vision quality you’d ask for.

Are Digital Night Vision Scopes Worth It?

Digital night vision scopes are popular optical devices but have their share of problems. First, they have a noticeable lag. The lag would not be a problem for those scanning the horizon or recording a video. But if you intend to use it for cross-country night runs, you will have issues with it.

Digital devices can be stored in fragile places because they are not protecting a tube. Another benefit of using digital night vision scopes is that they are less likely to be damaged when exposed to bright light. But if you unintentionally expose a tube night vision device to bright light after turning it on, the tube will get damaged quickly.

Conclusion

Night vision scopes have provided multiple benefits for many professionals, especially shooters, researchers, and hunters. These optics allow you to see distant objects that are hundreds of yards away clearly.

You will find the best models in this post if you are searching for a Gen 3 Night Vision. You can check any of our recommendations, and we hope you find one that best suits your needs.

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