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5 Best Night Vision Scope Under $500 for Hunting

Best Night Vision Scope Under $500

Back in the old days, it was a challenge to shoot accurately in low light conditions as the lack of illumination often impairs target acquisition. Thanks to recent advances in night vision technology and support accessories, modern-day hunters can go after their prey during the nighttime with great confidence.

Previously, night vision optics were only available to qualified military personnel. These days, even the best night vision scope products can already be bought at various gun stores.

Generally speaking, any shooter that can afford standard scopes can also acquire the best night vision scope options without much difficulty. Even so, getting the best night vision scope for you is not exactly a simple task.

With hundreds of models and dozens of brands around, inexperienced shooters tend to have a hard time choosing the best night vision scope for hunting. Personal preferences and shooting habits further complicate the selection process.

Fortunately, in case you could use a couple of recommendations and shopping instructions, this article has all you need to know. Down below, we’ll be introducing some of the best night vision scope products money can buy along with their specifications and features.

In addition to that, we also talk more about night vision scopes in general as well as a list of essential shopping tips to help you make a sensible investment!

Best Budget Pick
Armasight Nemesis
Armasight Nemesis
Best Overall
ATN X-Sight
Best for AR 15
Sightmark Photon XT


Night Vision Scope: Quick Overview

A night vision scopes and night vision devices enable human eyes to see in low lights and environments. The optics gather and then amplifies lights in the vicinity in order to provide you with images of your surroundings.

Generally speaking, a night vision scope offers you a vision that is far superior to your natural eyes in near-total darkness (albeit a green one).

People that often deal with lack of illumination while hunting and shooting greatly appreciate the assistance of night vision devices.

In the old days, the use of night vision optics was restricted but nowadays, many places have fairly lax rules.

Here are our top 5 picks for the best night vision scope in the market today.

Top Picks for the Best Night Vision Scope Under $500

1. ATN X-Sight 4K Buckhunter 5-20x Daytime Riflescope


ATN X-Sight

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  • Magnification: 5 – 20x
  • Lens Diameter: 85 Millimeters
  • Dimension: 11.36 x 3.5 x 3.45 Inches
  • Weight: 2.55 Pounds

The ATN X-Sight is a solid and advanced night vision scope that will not disappoint. Featuring excellent magnification range settings, a large objective lens, and respectable image resolution, this ATN optic is a high-quality product.

Since it’s specifically designed to work in daytime as well as nighttime, the scope can work well continuously 24/7. With 4 AA batteries, the scope can run for 8 – 12 hours or so, but you could always purchase the optional battery packs which can help the scope last up to 22 hours.  

Besides its primary night vision function, the ATN X-Sight also possesses various features to assist shooters on the field.  Thanks to the built-in rangefinder, the ATN scope can precisely notify you about the target distance in mere seconds.

Want to capture the moment before you take the shot? The convenient Recoil Activated Video (RAV) feature of the scope has you covered. By using the ATN Obsidian app, you could view anything you recorded in an instant!

  • Good battery life  
  • Ergonomic interface 
  • Advanced features
  • High acquisition cost 
  • Unresponsive customer service

2. Armasight Nemesis 6x Gen 2+ Night Vision Rifle Scope


Armasight Nemesis


  • Magnification: 6x
  • Lens Diameter: 160 Millimeters
  • Dimension: 15.3 x 4 x 2.8 Inches
  • Weight: 4.2 Pounds

If money isn’t that much of a factor for you, then the Armasight Nemesis is one of the best night vision rifle scopes money can buy. While the acquisition cost is steep, Armasight is a top-tier brand that delivers top-of-the-line features and state-of-the-art functions.

This Gen 2 model night vision scope has a great focus range, intuitive control layouts, and has admirable resistance and endurance. Since you can fit it with Picatinny/Weaver mounts, positioning the scope on your rifle is fairly simple.

In terms of power source, the Armasight Nemesis relies on high-powered CR123A batteries to give it the power it needs to operate without interruptions.

Most of the time, a single CR123A could sustain the Armasight for 60 hours on average. Once the battery runs low, the optic indicator will warn you that you have to put in a new one.

As the scope is able to work between 50 and 70 degrees Celsius, it should meet the needs and requirements of most serious hunters in any climate and situation.

  • Rugged body
  • Great handling   
  • Excellent clarity  
  • Very expensive
  • Slightly cumbersome

3. Sightmark Photon RT 6-12×50 Digital Night Vision Riflescope


Sightmark Photon XT

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  • Magnification: 4.6x
  • Lens Diameter: 42 Millimeters
  • Dimension: 15.66 x 2.95 x 3.14 Inches
  • Weight: 1.47 Pounds

Basic and simple, the Sightmark Photon XT is widely considered to be a good choice for people that desire something straightforward and effective.

While the Sightmark is technically a Gen 1 night vision scope, it’s nonetheless highly versatile with reasonable magnification range and many reticle options.

From crossbows to assault rifles, this scope can be mounted on a variety of platforms depending on the user’s demands. Due to the presence of Weaver rails, you can easily attach additional accessories to the optic whenever there you need to.

Considering the fact that the windage/elevation adjustment system of Sightmark Photon XT is digital, you should also be able to make changes without much difficulty.

In most cases, the Sightmark scope can offer shooters an impressive resolution of 656 x 492 for as far as 120 yards. Made to be shockproof and weatherproof, this optic is also fully capable of performing with distinction in less than ideal environments.

The scope requires 2 AA batteries to work and it would run smoothly for around 4 – 5 hours before new batteries are needed.

  • Easy to zero
  • Nice focus range
  • Reasonable price
  • Limited runtime
  • Barely acceptable quality control  

4. Firefield NVRS 3×42 Gen 1 Night Vision Riflescope


  • Magnification: 3x
  • Lens Diameter: 42 Millimeters
  • Dimension: 9 x 3.1x 3.3 Inches
  • Weight: 1.91 Pounds

If you’re shopping on a limited budget then the Firefield NVRS could be just what you’re looking for. The Firefield optic is often thought to be the best affordable night vision scope available for purchase on the market.

Even though it’s essentially a Gen 1 product, the scope can still deliver much-needed assistance to people who often hunt in the dark.

The inexpensive price point of the optic attracts numerous budget-minded shooters that can’t go for more high-end products.

With a 3x magnification range and 42 millimeters objective lens, the Firefield NVRS allows ordinary shooters to acquire targets as far as 165 yards. The scope’s high power IR illuminator makes it very simple for people to recognize potential prey in low light conditions.

Using top-grade titanium, the body of the optic proves highly resilient but still remains fairly light so you can handle it with relative ease. A convenient quick-detach Weaver mount is present as well, making it easier for you to install the scope at will.   

  • Reliable and dependable
  • Straightforward operation
  • Admirable structural strength
  • Designed mostly for outdoors
  • Mediocre mounting hardware  

5. Yukon NVRS Titanium 2.5×50 Varmint Hunter

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  • Magnification: 2.5x
  • Lens Diameter: 50 Millimeters
  • Dimension: 10 x 3.1 x 3.3 Inches
  • Weight: 1.93 Pounds

Specifically made for hunters, the Yukon Varmint Hunter is the best night vision scope for hunting that the market has to offer. Featuring a highly flexible easy-to-use mount, you can mount the Yukon optic on a lot of weapons.

From traditional bolt-action rifles to modern-day firearms, this scope should be compatible.

Due to the sizable 50 millimeters objective lens, the scope is able to gather light effectively and efficiently all day long.  The presence of a powerful infrared illuminator ensures that you receive clear target images in total darkness without much difficulty.

Being adaptable to digital cameras, the Yukon Varmint Hunter permits you to capture your hunting moments so you can share them with friends and family members.

On top of that, thanks to the precise nature of the adjustment system, you should have no trouble making accurate changes to the elevation/windage settings at a moment’s notice.

This optic utilizes 2 AA batteries for energy and it should run for 50 hours without IR. As proof of its quality, the scope is backed with an attractive limited lifetime warranty.

  • Commendable vision clarity
  • Good investment for its value
  • Well constructed and durable  
  • The images get blurry occasionally  
  • The instruction manual is a bit complex  

Getting the Best Night Vision Scope: Things to Consider

Man looking through night vision rifle scope

Check the Acquisition Cost

People often assume that because of the use of high-grade technology, night vision optics often have expensive price tags. Although it’s true that the cost of a night vision scope is higher than conventional models, there are still good-quality and affordable options.

With time and effort, you should be able to find night vision optics that go as cheap as 100$ or so. That being said, you have to keep in mind that there is a rather subtle link between capability and price.

In most cases, dirt cheap products would not be able to deliver top-notch performance on the field.

For the best of both worlds, a night vision scope under 500 is usually the sweet spot for most people.

We even have a buying guide on regular riflescopes under 500 dollars if you’re interested.

Glance Over the Scope Profile

Due to their sophisticated construction, most night vision optics tend to be heavy and bulky. The weight that these optics add to your rifle increases as the magnification level goes up. This can cause trouble for some people.

Hunters that have to move from one spot to another and make off-hand shots need to maneuver their rifle quickly, so a cumbersome night vision rifle scope would inevitably have negative impacts on the mobility of the scope it’s mounted on.

In case you hate lugging around a heavy weapon, you should prioritize getting lightweight night vision optics instead. However, if you’re going to be in a stationary position, then this isn’t something to worry about too much.

Inspect and Exam the Battery

As you already know, most night vision optics require batteries to work as designed. Once the batteries run out, the optics would be useless.

For this reason, it’s of utmost importance for you to thoroughly assess the runtime of the battery used by your preferred night vision rifle scope.

Most of the time, it’s not a bad idea to make sure that your night vision optics utilizes a long-lasting, easily-obtained battery. Since it’s highly likely that you have to bring spare batteries along with you, it wouldn’t hurt to stick to models that use compact batteries instead.

The last thing you want to experience is to have spare batteries take up precious room in your pocket as well as backpacks.

Take Focus Range Into Consideration

It goes without saying that a night vision scope has a shorter range compared to regular scopes, numerous models sacrifice range in exchange for a greater field of view. Nonetheless, you should take a good look at the maximum focus range that night vision optics could offer.

Focus range is the range that the shooter is able to recognize a potential target through the lens and send out some rounds toward it.

It’s worth noting that the focus range of the average night vision rifle scope is a subjective value at best. Fluctuations in different lighting conditions can quickly change the focus range value.

Thoroughly Assess Secondary Features

A couple of night vision scopes on the market are incorporated with additional functions like weather sensors, day-night vision, video recording, and so on.

Overall, secondary features could improve your experience on the field, but remember that each additional function can add weight to the optics along with your rifle.

As a result, it’s strongly advised that you think carefully about any secondary features that you want to have on your night vision rifle scope. In most cases, it’s unwise to get a model that possesses too many unnecessary functions.

History of Night Vision Devices

Night vision technology was first introduced in the late 1920s to early 1930s. However, night vision devices only started being widely used during World War II.

Various combatants released several optics designed to help their soldiers shoot with a certain level of accuracy in typical nighttime environments. Originally, fighting at night is a rather risky ordeal: friendly troops can accidentally engage each other and lead to devastating consequences.

It goes without saying that success in night combat requires a combination of experienced soldiers and well-thought strategies. All of that motivated the research along with the rapid adoption of night vision devices.

Generations of Night Vision Scopes: Essential Information for Novice Shooters

Wondering what kind of night vision optics you could run into on the market nowadays? Here is a guide on the different optic generations throughout the years.

Two night vision scopes

Generation 1: Venerable, Simple, and Affordable

The technologies used by standard Gen 1 night vision scopes have been around since the 1960s and they should meet the demands of the casual hunters.

Models in this category are known for being more affordable. You can purchase these scopes without leaving a deep hole in your wallet.

On the other hand, most optics that are classified as Gen 1 lack important refinements found on Gen 2 and Gen 3 products. As a result, the performance of Gen 1 night vision scopes is unsurprisingly basic and limited.

Generation 2: Works in Most Applications

Featuring more recent technologies, Gen 2 night vision scopes are more expensive than Gen 1 models but not as expensive as Gen 3 products.

Compared to Gen 1, Gen 2 delivers higher image resolution, longer battery runtime, and greater life expectancy. Therefore, Gen 2 examples are indeed good investments for hunters that need something straightforward and of high quality.  

Generation 3: Best of the Best

Employed by militaries around the globe, Gen 3 night vision scopes are the best night vision scopes if you have money to spend. The best Gen 3 night vision scope should offer you virtually everything you need to hunt successfully in low light conditions.

With extended focus range, top-of-the-line battery life, and many other advantages, you will never feel disappointed with Gen 3 night vision optics.

FAQs About Night Vision Optics

Man looking through a night vision scope

1. How Far Am I Able to See With a Night Vision Scope?

To put it plainly, it’s impossible to judge the range of a night vision scope as there are a lot of variables to consider. For example, a good Gen 3 optic allows you to spot a human figure at 300 yards.

However, it’s pretty difficult to reliably judge whether that person is a man or woman until the distance drops to around 150 yards or so.

In addition to that, the amount of surrounding light has considerable influences on the range of the night vision scope. Yet for most of the time, late gen optics often have superior performance compared to earlier units in similar conditions.

2. Why Do People Say That Auto-Gating Is Extremely Important?

As night vision permits the users to see in the dark spaces, sudden bursts of light might white out the device and cause temporary blindness. In order to prevent that from happening, it’s essential that your night vision scope possesses an auto-gating function.

Most of the time, auto-gating makes sure that the brightness of the sight images stays at an acceptable level. Once it detects lights that are deemed to be too bright for comfort, the auto-gating would automatically turn the scope off to protect your eyes.

Because of this, auto-gating is considered to be vital to a night vision scope.

3. Is There a Way to Measure the Quality of Images Provided by a Night Vision Scope?

To judge the resolution of the average night vision scopes, you need to rely on its LP/MM rating (Line Pairs per Millimeter). The higher the number, the more detailed the sight images. A rating of 64 -72 LP/MM is usually the best you can get.

That being said, most applications of night vision do not need such high resolution. Some claim that a rating of 45 LP/MM is already quite sufficient.

Remember to thoroughly test out the scope you like before heading to the counter. Night vision scopes are sizeable investments and you don’t want to make wrong choices.

4. What Is the Average Lifetime of a Night Vision Scope?

Depending on the time it takes for the tube coating to deteriorate, night vision scopes can last between 5,000 hours and 15,000 hours. The rule of thumb here is “the newer the generation, the longer the potential lifespan.”

If you want to get the most out of your night vision scope, then it would be best to just shut it off when you’re immediately not using it.  

In case you want something that sticks around longer than that, thermal units are readily available alternatives. Compared to other night vision examples, devices that utilize thermal technologies don’t rely on coatings and alike to work.

As long as you take good care of your night vision scopes, they can serve you for years without any trouble.

5. Do I Need Special Skills to Operate a Night Vision Scope?

Overall, any person would be able to run around in the dark with a standard night vision scope with no problems. Nonetheless, if you want to master your optic, it’s strongly recommended that you spend some money on familiarization lessons.

Certain sellers of night vision devices offer informative training courses to beginners to help them harness their optic’s potentials.

If you have never used a night vision scope before, it wouldn’t hurt to sign up for such programs. Of course, if you happen to know someone that has experience with night vision scopes, you could opt to train with that person instead.   

Reputable Manufacturers of Night Vision Scopes

It’s true that even optics from the most well-known brands in the industry won’t always guarantee satisfaction. That being said, it’s still a good idea to make sure you get your night vision scope straight from manufacturers with familiar names.

As with anything else, the market for night vision devices is competitive, so brands with less than ideal products won’t last for long. Therefore, if a brand remains in business long enough that its name becomes easily recognizable, it must have done something right.

Moreover, famous names are more willing to offer their consumers post-purchase supports and services compared to lesser-known brands.

Here are a couple of manufacturers you should keep in mind while shopping for the best night vision scope:   

  • Firefield: Being new to the whole night vision market, Firefield is already able to release solid products with excellent features. If you want a basic, no-nonsense night vision scope, yet only have a tight shopping budget, Firefield models are a great go-to.
  • ATN: Arguably the leading brand in the night vision industry, ATN is the name to look out for if you want scopes of reasonable quality. ATN night vision devices earn a lot of praise from civilians as well as law enforcement forces around the globe.
  • Armasight: A big name in the business, Armasight ensures that it has an appropriate night vision for every firearm enthusiast. No matter if you can cash out $10,000 or just $150, there’s probably an excellent Armasight optic that matches your financial capability.
  • Sightmark: Established in 2007, Sightmark has seen steady increases in popularity, and it’s now a famous manufacturer of optic goods today. As the brand delivers high-quality scopes at affordable prices, Sightmark quickly attracts the attention of many budget-minded shooters.  
  • Yukon: Committed to providing its customers with the latest technologies available, Yukon is another great name to keep an eye out for. In case you are shopping for your first night vision scope, it’s not a bad idea to start with a Yukon product.

Night Vision vs Thermal: Which One Is the Better Choice?

night vision vs thermal vision

Scopes that utilize thermal technologies have no need for lights to work on the field as they rely on temperatures. The higher the temperature of a target, the more radiation it emits. This is precisely what thermal scopes capitalize on for their design.

It’s simple to detect well-hidden prey in the middle of thick bushes with infrared devices as animals can’t hide their heat signatures.

On the downside, you are often unable to acquire detailed images while using thermal optics. In order to achieve precise shot placements with thermal pictures as your only references, you would have to practice a lot to get used to it.

In the end, which offers more value: night vision scopes or thermal scopes? To come up with a sensible answer, you have to ask yourself what qualities you seek in a rifle scope.

If timely detection is your main concern, then a thermal scope would suit your demand best. Considering the radiation-detecting nature of thermal scopes, their performance remains constant whether you use them at nighttime or daytime.

On the other hand, if you want high-detail images and only hunt after sunset, night vision scopes will be your best bet. Furthermore, night vision scope optics are capable of enduring incessant shot recoils without much difficulty.

The Legality of Night Vision Scopes

As night vision devices used to be reserved for trained personnel, some people are still afraid that they might get into trouble by possessing night vision scopes.

In reality, as long as you have the money to back the purchase, it’s possible to secure state-of-the-art night vision optics with no problem whatsoever.

You don’t need to apply for licenses and permits in order to carry scopes that utilize night vision technologies. Whether you’re a law enforcement officer or just a hunter, you can buy and own any night vision scope that you’d like, as long as you can afford it.

However, you should know that it’s a federal crime to smuggle night vision devices out of the U.S., so keep that in mind.  

Used Optics: Is It Worth It?

Since the acquisition cost of newly manufactured night vision scopes tends to be high, some people mull purchasing secondhand examples in order to save money.

It goes without saying that purchasing used optics would be a cheap way to enhance your vision in the dark. Nonetheless, it’s quite hard for ordinary people to tell how many hours these units have on them.

As a result, if a dealer confidently claims that his/her secondhand night vision devices are “in great shape”, it’s still possible that it could be a blatant lie.

The majority of used units on the market nowadays have seen intensive service in agencies and industries, so their remaining lifespan is far from ideal.  

Unlike used vehicles, there is no such this as a mileage meter on night vision scopes. Therefore, if you have to get a night vision for whatever purpose, then you might as well invest in a brand new product.

The last thing you want to experience is to see your night vision scope malfunction while hunting in the dark.

Whatever money you save on purchasing a secondhand optic, its actual worth probably won’t match the reliability and dependability of a brand new product.   

Taking Care of Night Vision Scopes

Man cleaning night vision scopes

Stay Away From Excessively Bright Lights

Night vision scopes are meant to be used in low light situations, so exposure to bright light can degrade their performance.

Even when the devices have an auto-gating feature and light-sensing mechanisms, you must never place night vision scopes directly in front of light sources.

Store them in a dark, well-ventilated location and also cover their lens until you are about to head out. Fortunately, most products come with their own storage cases, so it’s easier for users to take care of their night vision optics.

Just make sure to keep this tip in mind and your night vision scope should stay fine for a long time.     

Remove The Battery After Each Use

In case you have no plan on using your night vision scope for more than a few days, it would be best to remove the battery. This is necessary if you wish to protect the delicate electronic components of the optics and minimize the potential risk of battery leakage.

Needless to say, store the battery in a dry and cool place for future use. High humidity can have negative effects on the battery and it can ruin your night vision scope.

Be careful about storage space and don’t leave the optics turned on longer than you have to. This will only waste the battery and can tarnish the coating as well.

Beware of Abrasive Outdoor Elements

As with a normal rifle scope, night vision scopes are vulnerable to a variety of abrasive elements outdoors. We advise that you quickly outfit your optic with transparent glass filters to preserve the lens quality.

These filters let you use the scopes as usual, but it ensures that the lens is immune to scratches too.

When it comes to cleaning the lens of a night vision scope, refrain from wiping its surface with abrasive cloths. In other words, clean and treat the lens of the scope as if it’s your camera or phone screen.

Once you are done with the cleaning, leave the scope out for a bit to prevent moisture build-ups.

The Durability of Night Vision Scopes

When it comes to night vision devices in general, people often ask themselves: “What happens if I accidentally drop them?” Well, the short answer is that you could likely compromise the precise assembling of the optics and even render them useless.

In order for night vision scopes to work as designed, all of their components have to be in good shape. A minor dent is enough to turn a night vision device into a nice paperweight, so it’s vital to handle them with care.  Considering just how costly the scopes are, it’s necessary to get a good hold of them while on the field to avoid possible mishaps.

That being said, specific military-spec units are indeed able to take more bumps and hits than other commercial products. These examples tend to come with an extended warranty, which goes to show how about their structural integrity and general endurance.

You need to pay quite a bit to acquire such a unit though, and the supply is not exactly stable since military personnel will always have priority.

Although, whether you’re using an entry-level night vision scope or the best night vision scope out there, you should still always pay attention to the mounting.

If you secure the scope firmly and properly, then you don’t have to worry too much about dropping it by mistake.

Making a Night Vision Scope by Yourself

If purchasing a night vision scope is totally out of the question, then you can resort to making one by yourself. However, it’s important to note that DIY scopes are never as great as actual products you can buy from trusted manufacturers and experts.

We still recommend purchasing the best night vision scopes if you have the budget for it.

This is a quick guide on how to assemble a night vision scope at the comfort of your own home.

Disassembled night vision scope

Components to Prepare

All night vision scopes require a functional image intensifier to provide viewable images to users in a low light condition. There are numerous models in circulation and you could get them from a variety of sources. You can usually get these for at least $100 total.

In addition to that, you are going to need to look around for an objective lens assembly and an adapter ring with a magnifying loupe.

These parts form the core of your night vision scope, so don’t get stingy. Finally, in order to make the unit compatible for rifle operation, purchase a pressure-activated laser sight and rail mounts as well.     

Aside from the items above, some miscellaneous components would come in handy like caps, a battery holder, PVC pipe, and duct tape, among others.

If needed, the use of other materials with more or less similar functions is also tolerable. Once you manage to get everything, it’s finally time to start assembling your DIY night vision scope.

Step 1: Test the Image Intensifier

The first thing to do when putting together a night vision scope is to see if the image intensifier is working or not. Since the tube is exceptionally sensitive to light, refrain from exposing it to light sources and perform the test in dark areas of your house.

Other than that, you should also directly hook the image intensifier to an energy supply with an appropriate rating to get it to glow.

Remember that if you give the tube more power than it can handle, its circuitry would likely suffer permanent damages.

Important Note: Several image intensifiers feature threaded holes as terminals, so you’ll just have to insert a screw and get the wire on it.

Whatever you intend to do here, avoid soldering the terminal unless the product explicitly states that you could do so. The heat build-up caused by soldering might inadvertently interfere with the power connection and disable the tube for good.

Step 2: Fabricate a Suitable Eyepiece

Grab the plug and the adapter (both must be threaded) and fit in the lens, then proceed to cut everything off on them excluding the threads. Make the hole big enough to accommodate the plug after you plug it in through the end caps.

You should also cut another hole into the plug so you can look through the lens with relative ease. Sand down the outer ridges of the plug before attaching the parts together with the help of electrical duct tape.

If you’ve done everything correctly, you should possess a fine eyepiece for your DIY night vision scope.

Step 3: Build the Objective Assembly and the Scope Power Compartment

Things are more straightforward at this point. Glue the mount to the adapter, drill a hole for the threads, and glue the adapter to the caps. After that, screw in the lens and you should end up with a completed objective assembly for your night vision scope.

The next task is to make sure that the scope receives a sufficient amount of electricity so it can operate without interruption on the field.

To achieve that goal, simply grab a battery holder and screw it into the housing. Since you have to do some wiring, you’ll have to drill holes so the wires can go through.

All you have to do is to get the polarity right and that should do the trick.

Step 4: Paint the Night Vision Scope

Small amounts of light occasionally pass through PVC, and that might cloud up the picture of your night vision scope. In order to prevent that from happening, you have to cover the surfaces of your scope with layers of paint.

As paints could tarnish the lens, temporarily remove glass components in your scope first or at least cover them with something.

Get to a well-ventilated space, process the scope with sandpapers, then throw in a couple of coats of primers onto it. Wait for the paint primer to completely dry then paint the scope using the color of your choice.

Step 5: Adjust the Focus and Get the Mount In

At night, tweak the position of the objective lens slightly to get it to focus on a distant object (walls, trees, etc.). Once you reach the ideal quality, secure the lens in place so it can no longer move without human interaction.

Finally, outfit the scope with mounts that can suit its shape then install it on your rifle.

Again, DIY scopes can be difficult to assemble and can be a hassle for a lot of people. If you have no experience crafting objects such as this, purchasing one of the best night vision scopes is still the most recommended way to go.

FINAL TIP: If you’re looking for scopes that perform well under low-light conditions, you can check out our review of the best lowlight riflescopes for hunting.



October 4, 2021 - Added new product link options
September 21, 2021 - Reviewed and updated article links, marked 2 products as discontinued/unavailable

About the author

Christopher Wade

Christopher Wade is a true outdoorsman. After spending most of his career as a firearms expert and instructor in Nebraska, he retreated to the great outdoors to enjoy retirement.

Christopher’s expertise in handling firearms and hunting gear are what propelled him to create the Shooting Mystery blog. He hopes for all readers to gain useful and practical knowledge for enjoying their time outdoors.