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Old November 13th, 2016, 13:25   #1
ThunderCactus
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New and improved - NIGHT VISION FAQ

Gen 1 - If it's not top of the line, don't buy it. As far as the scope of night vision goes, this is basically comparing a bicycle to a car. However, it's still better than walking!

Gen 2- Bottom of the line stuff is subjective. It has much better amplification than gen1, but the cheap enough tubes can be so noisy and low resolution that they could actually be harder to use than a top end gen1. Top end gen2 stuff (Photonis XD4, XR5, INTENS tubes) is on par with lower end gen 3 and even comes with some high end features like autogating. Expect to spend anywhere from $2200 (used) to $5000 (new) for gen2

Gen 3- Since everyone buying gen3 is pretty well buying old military stuff; ANVIS and PVS-14s, there's only 3 really important things to remember:
- OMNI specs are *minimum* specs, but OMNI VII has the highest minimum spec. That being said, it's possible to get an OMNI V that's just as good as an OMNI VII, but there's no spec sheet, so there's no telling unless you have them side by side for a direct comparison.
- How does one check that? Well don't take the seller's word for it, look through the ocular lens at an angle, you should see white writing like this (you shouldn't have to remove the lens to see it), and then you correspond it with this chart. If it doesn't have writing on the back, it may have writing on the SIDE, which requires you to open the body. Or it could be raised black lettering, so use a flashlight or take the ocular lens off to check.
- Military tubes don't have spec sheets. Commercial tubes do. If it doesn't have identifying marks on the tube, then it's commercial. Now that's not necessarily a bad thing, as long as you either have a spec sheet, or can compare it to something you know side by side. Don't pay for an OMNI VII then later find out it's just an old repacked Litton tube.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 13:56   #2
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OMNI VII has the highest minimum spec. That being said, it's possible to get an OMNI V that's just as good as an OMNI VII, but there's no spec sheet, so there's no telling unless you have them side by side for a direct comparison.
Incorrect. Omni 7 is not the highest minimum spec. There are contracts which have surpassed Omni 7. The list is old, dated, and is not being updated with the most recent contract data. More information is available at sites like http://www.parttarget.com/ for recent NSN contract data.

Current Military contract tubes greatly exceed Omni 7 minimum specs.


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Originally Posted by ThunderCactus View Post
- Military tubes don't have spec sheets. Commercial tubes do. If it doesn't have identifying marks on the tube, then it's commercial. Now that's not necessarily a bad thing, as long as you either have a spec sheet, or can compare it to something you know side by side. Don't pay for an OMNI VII then later find out it's just an old repacked Litton tube.
Military/LE contract tubes will have a spec sheet if the agency procuring the equipment requests it. Not all military tubes come equipped with a placard, sets built at factory for government agencies sometimes have no internal markings beyond a serial that refers back to the original PO made by the procuring agency.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 13:58   #3
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Hey Chris, if I post a bunch of incorrect shit will that make you mad enough to write us a proper guide?
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Old November 13th, 2016, 14:01   #4
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No no, if we make enough incorrect guides, someone will finally understand that it's just easier to write a fucking guide instead of correcting everyone else constantly.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 15:15   #5
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What's the process by which people manage to acquire Omni IV or higher tubes, if according to the old thread, anything over 1500 FOM is ITAR restricted?

Not an NVG user, but I did find a lot of the links/charts/terminology in the old thread useful. If someone with a kind heart, would compile the "correct" info into a single post, I would be in your debt.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 15:22   #6
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What's the process by which people manage to acquire Omni IV or higher tubes, if according to the old thread, anything over 1500 FOM is ITAR restricted?

Not an NVG user, but I did find a lot of the links/charts/terminology in the old thread useful. If someone with a kind heart, would compile the "correct" info into a single post, I would be in your debt.
Anything over 1500 is "restricted" by that I mean it is not exportable from the US, any and all US gen 3 regardless of FOM is not exportable from the US, that said there are no restrictions on owning night vision in Canada what so ever, unless it is stolen, but that is self explanatory. Really the only way to get any US gen III is by buying from the second hand market or finding a place in Europe that has somehow got them.
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I think that's the direction I should have gone with this one though.
gen1 - I can't see shit
gen2 - I see LOTS of green, but not many people
gen3 - Nobody wants to play with me because I'm an elitist asshole now
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Old November 13th, 2016, 16:37   #7
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Nightvision:

Gen1: I see green
Gen2: I see Green
Gen3: I see Green

Really high end toys: OH GOD! I SEE EVERYTHING! I CAN FEEL THE POWER FLOWING THROUGH ME!!!!

Essentially correct, right Chris?

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Anything over 1500 is "restricted" by that I mean it is not exportable from the US, any and all US gen 3 regardless of FOM is not exportable from the US, that said there are no restrictions on owning night vision in Canada what so ever, unless it is stolen, but that is self explanatory. Really the only way to get any US gen III is by buying from the second hand market or finding a place in Europe that has somehow got them.
Not entirely correct, as long as you have your ducks and paperwork in a row and are properly set up, you can do what you want as long as you pay the fees.
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Like seriously dude. The incredible lack of common sense in the question could be scientifically investigated for evidence of a black hole.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 18:47   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gato View Post
Nightvision:

Gen1: I see green
Gen2: I see Green
Gen3: I see Green

Really high end toys: OH GOD! I SEE EVERYTHING! I CAN FEEL THE POWER FLOWING THROUGH ME!!!!

Essentially correct, right Chris?



Not entirely correct, as long as you have your ducks and paperwork in a row and are properly set up, you can do what you want as long as you pay the fees.
Ummm, no.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 19:01   #9
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Last I heard the US was not issuing export permits to civilians at all, but I mean if they are, sign me up.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThunderCactus View Post
I think that's the direction I should have gone with this one though.
gen1 - I can't see shit
gen2 - I see LOTS of green, but not many people
gen3 - Nobody wants to play with me because I'm an elitist asshole now
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Old November 13th, 2016, 19:03   #10
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Kind of gross watching all the dick waving going on here... ugh. These threads are going to give everyone chlamydia. Thanks guys.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 20:14   #11
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Originally Posted by Gato View Post
Nightvision:

Gen1: I see green
Gen2: I see Green
Gen3: I see Green
Pffff NO. WRONG.
Tubes can have different Phosphors which changes the shade of green. Some even have white phosphor that makes it bluish or black and white, not green at all. And if you have an amber filter then you're in the yellow/orange range, but that's just filtering the light coming off the tube lol

I think that's the direction I should have gone with this one though.
gen1 - I can't see shit
gen2 - I see LOTS of green, but not many people
gen3 - Nobody wants to play with me because I'm an elitist asshole now
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Old November 13th, 2016, 21:50   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThunderCactus View Post
Pffff NO. WRONG.
Tubes can have different Phosphors which changes the shade of green. Some even have white phosphor that makes it bluish or black and white, not green at all. And if you have an amber filter then you're in the yellow/orange range, but that's just filtering the light coming off the tube lol

I think that's the direction I should have gone with this one though.
gen1 - I can't see shit
gen2 - I see LOTS of green, but not many people
gen3 - Nobody wants to play with me because I'm an elitist asshole now

Gen1 - Why is everything just black this is horse shit
Gen2 - Cool I can see 50ft in front of me. Let me turn off my IR light source... Now why can't I see shit?
Gen3 - Hey guys why didn't you go to the game?
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Old November 13th, 2016, 22:31   #13
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Thunder does his homework and puts a lot of time posting information for everyone to read. So if anyone wants to clean it up go ahead, but post correct info. Bring solutions, not problems.

After many years and a very picky attitude of gear I'll give you a non-pro/non-technical run down of what to look for.

REMEMBER, ONE UNIT TO ANOTHER OR ONE TUBE TO ANOTHER EXPECT SOME VARIANCE, SO DO YOUR HOMEWORK BEFORE YOU BUY! JUST LIKE YOU ALL SHOULD DO WITH EVERYTHING!

- Gen 1: Don't waste your time and/or money. This is what you buy to get your ankle broken or if you're having issues seeing what's in your own hand.

- Gen 1+: Can produce a reasonably clean picture, but for airsoft I certainly don't recommend it. This requires a lot of moonlight and does little for depth perception. If you must buy NV and don't have a lot of cash, then surego for it, but I prefer to let my eyes adjust than fucking around with one of these. (If you must and don't have a good budget then this for you, but you'll probably sell it)

- Gen 2: The adjustments made from Gen 1 to here are minimal and only really raise the price. Pretty much a complete waste, so go Gen 1+ or go higher than Gen 2. Don't waste your time people.

- Gen 2+: This where shit gets good. Your images are cleaned up and you can semi-effectively move around and fight. Make sure you get a unit that works well with IR and has low noise. Now most tubes will have interference, look for units/tubes that don't have spots in the center area of the viewing area, but off to the side may be normal. They are certainly and investment, but don't have to be ridiculous. You'll still get blinded by flash lights though. (If your taking this seriously but don't want to spend a fortune, live here.)

- Gen 3: Definately a step up, but it's almost overshadowed by the massive price jump. Once again I'd go down or up instead of wasting my money.

- Gen 3+: These are very pricey but badass. Not all units are equal so do serious homework before investing, because even used units can be very expensive. If I was gonna bother going this big I'd get an auto-gating unit to cancel out unwanted light sources. The difference between one of these and any others is huge. (Want to kick absolute ass and love night vision long time? Got some extra thousands? You live you.)


Remember you'll need to look into helmets, mounts, brackets and IR, so there's always more money involved than just the unit itself.

Yes night vision can make a devastating difference in a game. Even a couple units can give a large team a huge advantage, especially if it's a decent unit and they know how to use it.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 22:36   #14
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Don't think anyone bothers with + anymore, it's all about what brand and model of tube is in there.
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Old November 13th, 2016, 22:41   #15
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Don't think anyone bothers with + anymore, it's all about what brand and model of tube is in there.
forgot about gen 0


Gen 0 .. Take your call of duty special collectors edition shit and go home.
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