I Tested the Best Thermal Scopes of 2023: Read My Reviews

As an avid hunter, I know the importance of having a reliable and accurate rifle scope.

Thermal rifle scopes are especially beneficial for hunters who pursue nocturnal or elusive game.

When selecting a thermal rifle scope, some key considerations include the overall quality and performance of the thermal image, detection range, refresh rate, and durability.

In addition, understanding your preferred hunting environment and style will greatly influence your choice. After all, the best thermal rifle scope should enhance your hunting experience and contribute to your success in the field.

I have spent countless hours researching and testing various thermal rifle scopes to identify the top-performing models that will elevate your hunting experience to new heights.

Best Thermal Rifle Scopes

I’ve gathered a list of the best thermal rifle scopes available on the market. These scopes will help you take your shooting game to the next level, even in low-light conditions. Check them out below!

Pulsar Thermion 2 Pro Thermal Riflescope XP50


  • Impressive 2,000-yard heat detection range
  • Wi-Fi connectivity with built-in photo and video recording support
  • Picture-in-Picture mode with various reticle options and colors


  • Lack of SD card support for media storage
  • Requires caution due to export control restrictions
  • Higher price point for some users

I was blown away by the Pulsar Thermion 2 Pros 2,000-yard heat detection range, which allowed me to easily spot targets from a significant distance. The 640×480 microbolometer resolution delivers impressively clear images, making it my top choice for thermal scopes.

One fantastic feature I appreciated was the Wi-Fi connectivity and built-in photo and video recording support. With the Stream Vision 2 App, I was able to view and share my hunting experiences quickly.

However, I noticed there was no SD card support for storing media, which can be a minor inconvenience.

The Picture-in-Picture mode, offering 10 reticle shapes in 9 colors, allowed me to customize my viewing experience according to my preferences. It also comes with IPX7 waterproof certification, making it durable in various weather conditions. I did need to pay attention to the mentioned export control notice and be cautious with its handling due to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR).

Although the Pulsar Thermion 2 Pro Thermal Riflescope XP50 comes at a higher price point, I believe its features and performance justify the investment. As a hunting enthusiast, I’m incredibly satisfied with this thermal scope and recommend it as my top pick.

ATN Thor 4 Thermal Rifle Scope

I think this scope is a great budget pick with impressive features for avid hunters.


  • Ultra Sensitive Next Gen Sensor for clear images in darkness
  • Advanced Ballistic Calculator for responsible hunting
  • Dual Stream Video Recording for sharing and saving your hunts


  • Screen freezing issues reported by some users
  • Accessories may disappoint
  • Several features might not be used by all hunters

The ultra-sensitive next-gen sensor provided clear and crisp images even at the farthest range and in total darkness. It made spotting targets much easier during my night hunting sessions.

In addition to its excellent imaging capabilities, I found the built-in ballistic calculator to be incredibly helpful. It allowed me to hunt responsibly by ensuring precise long-range shots, considering various factors such as range, wind, temperature, and humidity.

One of the features I enjoyed the most was the dual-stream video recording. It streamed video to my mobile device in HD resolution and simultaneously recorded to an SD card, allowing me to review and share my hunts later.

However, I did experience some screen freezing issues that were an inconvenience, although not a deal-breaker. Also, some of the included accessories didn’t live up to my expectations.

Overall, the ATN Thor 4 Thermal Rifle Scope is a fantastic budget-friendly option for those looking to add advanced imaging and recording features to their hunting arsenal. Despite a few drawbacks, I believe the scope’s performance makes it well worth the investment for those passionate about night hunting.

AGM Global Vision Rattler TC35-384

This compact thermal clip-on system is perfect for medium-range use, offering both excellent performance and versatility.


  • Compact and lightweight design
  • High-resolution thermal imaging
  • Functions well in tough weather conditions


  • Limited optimal performance with higher magnification scopes
  • Mounts may not be low enough for some setups
  • Requires external power source in some cases

I recently had the opportunity to try out the AGM Global Vision Rattler TC35-384 Thermal Imaging Clip-On System, and I must say, it’s an impressive device. As someone who spends a lot of time outdoors hunting and patrolling, using a reliable thermal scope is essential for spotting targets in various weather conditions. The Rattler provides sharp imaging, whether it’s pitch black or foggy, making it a valuable tool for my hunting trips.

The compact and lightweight design of the Rattler makes it easy to attach to my rifle scope and carry around for an extended period. Unlike other thermal scopes I’ve used previously, this one operates efficiently even in harsh environments. I particularly appreciated its waterproof and shockproof features, which came in handy during a recent hunting trip in the rain.

However, I did encounter a few downsides with the AGM Rattler. When using a higher magnification scope, the performance of the thermal imaging clip-on system wasn’t as optimal as I had hoped. Additionally, the mounts provided didn’t sit quite low enough for a couple of my setups. Lastly, some users reported needing an external power source for the device to function, which isn’t ideal for those on the go.

Despite the few minor drawbacks, I believe the AGM Global Vision Rattler TC35-384 is an excellent clip-on thermal imaging system worth considering for hunters and outdoor enthusiasts. Its compact design, image quality, and tough weather resistance make it a reliable option for those looking to enhance their night- or low-light vision capabilities.

TheOpticGuru X-Sight LTV Ultra Light Day/Night Hunting Scope

I believe this scope is an excellent budget-friendly option for hunters seeking quality performance both day and night.


  • Crystal clear QHD+ Sensor
  • Effective night vision mode
  • Easy one-shot zeroing


  • Power button may be intermittent
  • Learning curve for programs
  • Pixilation after shots

When I tried out the TheOpticGuru X-Sight LTV Ultra Light Day/Night Hunting Scope, I first noticed the crystal clear image quality it delivered at any distance. The QHD+ Sensor and comfortable 3″ eye relief just made my hunting experience a lot more enjoyable.

The night vision mode on this scope is also impressive. I found it to provide enhanced and rapid target acquisition in complete darkness, allowing me to spot my targets on those late-night hunts easily. The 720p video recording feature is another bonus, allowing me to capture my hunting adventures in sharp detail.

One of the outstanding features on this scope is the one-shot zeroing capability. Even though some users may find it difficult at long ranges, with a little practice, I managed to quickly adjust the settings and zero in on my target with ease.

However, there are a few downsides to this budget-friendly scope. The power button appeared to be intermittent, which may cause inconvenience for some users. Additionally, there is a learning curve when it comes to navigating the various programs and settings within the scope but taking time to familiarize yourself with its functions will help you make the most of what it offers.

Lastly, after taking a few shots, I noticed brief pixilation on the display. Although this can be bothersome, considering its price and overall performance, I think the TheOpticGuru X-Sight LTV is still a fantastic option for those seeking a budget-friendly thermal rifle scope.

AGM Rattler TS25-384 Thermal Imaging RifleScope

The AGM Rattler TS25-384 is a solid choice for those looking for a quality thermal riflescope without breaking the bank.


  • Clear 384×288 thermal resolution
  • Built-in EMMC with 16GB storage for video recording and snapshots
  • Up to 4.5 hours of battery life


  • Slightly bulky at 16 ounces
  • Maximum 8x magnification may limit long-range capabilities
  • No mention of night vision capabilities

I recently had the chance to test out the AGM Rattler TS25-384 Thermal Imaging RifleScope, and I must say, I was quite impressed with its performance. The high-sensitivity detector combined with the image processing technology, Adaptive AGC, DDE, and 3D DNR, offered a crisp and clear view of my surroundings even in low light conditions. The 0.39-inch OLED display provided excellent image quality as well.

With a built-in EMMC and 16GB storage capacity, I had no trouble capturing video recordings and snapshots during my testing. As a bonus, the USB cable and other accessories were provided in the package so that I could easily transfer my media files and maintain the lens. I must admit though, the 8x maximum magnification did pose a challenge while attempting longer-range shots.

One downside I noticed was the weight of the scope. At 16 ounces, it added noticeable weight to my rifle but didn’t hinder me from making accurate shots. Another drawback is the lack of night vision capabilities. It would have been an excellent addition, providing an even more versatile hunting experience.

Overall, the AGM Rattler TS25-384 is a reliable and affordable thermal riflescope. Despite some limitations in magnification and weight, its high-quality thermal imaging and recording capabilities make it a worthwhile choice for hunting enthusiasts.

X-Vision XVT Thermal Scope – TR1

I highly recommend the X-Vision XVT Thermal Scope as the best reflex sight thermal scope for unparalleled day and night vision.


  • Excellent thermal reflex sight with heat detection
  • Suitable for day and night use in hunting and surveilling
  • Long-range detection with versatile magnification options


  • May require manual calibration at times
  • Slightly heavy at 1.3 pounds
  • A small number of reviews to judge reliability

I was impressed by the thermal reflex sight technology, which provided an upgraded vision and heat detection experience. It handled over 53-ft/lb of recoil effortlessly, making it a powerful addition to my hunting gear.

The great thing about this thermal scope is that it’s perfect for both day and night use. Whether I was hunting, scouting, or surveilling, the 650nm visible laser and magnification from 1x to 4x came in handy. The thermal detector’s range is also remarkable, with 1,000-yard vehicle and 500-yard human detection capabilities.

One feature that stood out to me was the AMOLED display with infinite eye relief and five color palettes. While the scope can be calibrated manually or automatically, I found myself adjusting it occasionally for better accuracy. The quick-release Picatinny mount and IP67 weatherproof rating make it a reliable and practical choice for outdoor activities.

On the downside, the X-Vision XVT Thermal Scope is relatively heavy at 1.3 pounds, which could be a factor to consider for those seeking a lightweight option. Additionally, the limited number of user reviews makes it somewhat challenging to gauge the product’s long-term performance and reliability.

Overall, I believe the X-Vision XVT Thermal Scope – TR1 is a fantastic option for hunters and outdoor enthusiasts seeking a reliable and powerful thermal scope.

AGM Varmint LRF TS35-640 Thermal Rifle Scope

In my experience, this thermal rifle scope is perfect for night-time varmint hunting.


  • High-quality thermal resolution
  • Fast 50Hz imaging for quick target acquisition
  • Built-in laser rangefinder for precise distance measurements


  • On the heavier side at 2 pounds
  • Might be pricey for some budgets
  • Limited customer reviews to validate its performance fully

As a night-time varmint hunter, I found that the AGM Varmint LRF TS35-640 Thermal Rifle Scope is a game-changer. Its 640×512 thermal resolution allowed me to see my targets clearly, even in pitch-black darkness. The fast 50Hz imaging was impressive as it enabled me to quickly acquire and follow my targets, even on the move.

The built-in laser rangefinder is another fantastic feature of this thermal scope. It helped me accurately judge the distance to my targets, allowing me to take more precise shots. This is particularly helpful when hunting elusive varmints, making every shot count.

However, there are a few drawbacks to this thermal rifle scope. At 2 pounds, it can feel a bit heavy on my rifle. This might not be an issue for everyone, but I did notice it during extended hunting sessions. Additionally, the scope carries a higher price tag, which might concern those on a tighter budget.

Lastly, while my personal experience with the scope was positive, limited customer reviews are available to further validate its performance. It’s essential to consider this factor when making a purchase decision.

The AGM Varmint LRF TS35-640 is the best night-time varmint scope. Its high-quality thermal resolution, fast imaging, and built-in laser rangefinder make it a valuable and reliable scope.

ATN X-Sight LTV Ultra Light Day & Night Vision Rifle Scope 3-9x Classic

The ATN X-Sight LTV is an excellent choice for hunters seeking a high-quality thermal rifle scope that offers versatility for both day and night use.


  • Crystal clear QHD+ Sensor image quality for day and night
  • Night Vision Mode for rapid target acquisition in complete darkness
  • Video recording capability in 720P quality


  • Mounting rings not compatible with dovetail mounts
  • No mill dot reticle
  • Might not hold zero for more powerful calibers

I recently got my hands on the ATN X-Sight LTV, and I couldn’t be more impressed with the image quality this scope offers. The QHD+ Sensor ensures clarity in various lighting conditions, while the Night Vision mode allows me to spot and track targets even in complete darkness. I have used this scope for both daytime coyote hunting and nighttime feral hog control and it has performed exceptionally well in both situations.

The ATN X-Sight LTV offers user-friendly controls and an ergonomic design which made mounting and adjusting the scope a breeze. Moreover, the One Shot Zero feature allowed for a quick and painless sight-in process. I also appreciate the variety of reticles that ATN provides, allowing me to choose the one that suits my hunting style the best.

However, there are a few drawbacks to consider. For instance, the provided mounting rings do not support dovetail mounts, which might be inconvenient for some users. Additionally, the scope lacks a mill dot reticle option, which I found somewhat unusual. Lastly, I read some reviews mentioning that the scope might not hold its zero when mounted on more powerful caliber rifles.

The ATN X-Sight LTV is a top-notch thermal rifle scope with impressive image quality and versatility for day and night hunting. Despite a few drawbacks, I highly recommend it to any hunter looking for a reliable and high-performance addition to their kit.

ATN Thor LT 320 5-10x Thermal Rifle Scope & Quick Detach Mount

I recommend this thermal rifle scope for its excellent performance and durability, with the added bonus of a quick detach mount.


  • Impressive resolution at 320×240 pixels
  • Features ATN Obsidian Core LT technology
  • Fast thermal sensor with 60Hz


  • One shot zero sighting not ideal for beginners
  • Made for 30mm tube scopes, not all scopes compatible
  • Mounting may require some initial adjustment

When I used the ATN Thor LT 320 5-10x Thermal Rifle Scope for the first time, I immediately noticed the high-quality resolution. The ATN Obsidian Core LT technology is truly a game changer, significantly enhancing my ability to spot targets in various conditions.

The 60Hz thermal sensor performed incredibly fast and smooth, which helped me track moving targets more efficiently. However, for those new to using thermal scopes, the one shot zero sighting may take some getting used to and might not initially be the most intuitive.

I appreciate that the scope is made of hardened aluminum alloy, which increases durability without adding too much weight to my rifle. However, this scope is designed for compatibility with 30mm diameter tube scopes, so it might not be suitable for all existing rifle setups.

The included quick detach mount allows for user-friendly installation. It’s easy to attach and quick to release, making it a convenient accessory for ATN scopes from the X-Sight 4K Series or ThOR 4 Series. That being said, it may require some initial adjustment to achieve the perfect fit.

The ATN Thor LT 320 5-10x Thermal Rifle Scope is a reliable and high-performing scope with the added benefit of a quick detach mount. While it may take some time for beginners to get comfortable with its features, the investment is well worth it for those seeking a durable and versatile thermal scope.

theOpticGuru ATN MossyOak Thor LT Ultra Light Thermal Hunting Scope

I highly recommend theOpticGuru ATN MossyOak Thor LT for anyone seeking a reliable and lightweight thermal rifle scope.


  • 60Hz Thermal Sensor for fast target acquisition
  • White Hot/Black Hot Mode for versatile display
  • Easy and fast One Shot Zero sight-in


  • Image clarity could be better
  • Entry-level features
  • Can be tricky to sight in

I recently had the pleasure of trying out theOpticGuru ATN MossyOak Thor LT Ultra Light Thermal Hunting Scope, and I must say, I was quite impressed with its overall performance. The 60Hz Thermal Sensor allowed me to quickly and accurately acquire targets by detecting animal heat signatures. This made it especially useful for hunting at night or in low-light conditions.

The White Hot/Black Hot Mode was another great feature that allowed me to choose my preferred color palette for displaying moving objects. This way, I could easily spot my targets and maintain a clear line of sight. The One Shot Zero functionality also made it very easy to sight in my scope, saving me considerable time and effort.

However, I did notice that the image clarity could be better. Though it didn’t hinder my overall hunting experience, having sharper images to work with would be nice. Additionally, this is an entry-level thermal scope, so some of the more advanced features found in higher-end models may be missing. Lastly, sighting in the scope can be a bit tricky, but using hand-warmers as targets helped in my case.

The theOpticGuru ATN MossyOak Thor LT Ultra Light Thermal Hunting Scope offers excellent value for its price point. While it may not be packed with high-end features, its user-friendly interface, lightweight design, and effective thermal sensor make it a solid choice for hunters looking to up their game.

Factors I Looked for in a Thermal Rifle Scope

When it comes to choosing the best thermal rifle scope, there are a few crucial factors to consider. In this buying guide, I’ll provide you with some essential tips, so you can make an informed decision.

Magnification and Resolution

First and foremost, consider the magnification and resolution of the thermal scope. A higher magnification allows you to view targets at greater distances, while better resolution ensures clear and sharp images. It’s essential to strike a balance between the two, as a very high magnification may decrease image resolution.

Refresh Rate

Another important aspect to consider is the refresh rate. A higher refresh rate provides smoother video streaming and ensures that the image doesn’t lag or stutter while tracking moving targets. Look for scopes that offer at least a 30 Hz refresh rate, as this is generally considered the minimum acceptable standard for a good-quality thermal scope.

Detection Range

The detection range is also an important factor to look at when choosing a thermal rifle scope. Depending on your hunting or tactical requirements, you want a scope that can detect heat signatures at a significant distance. Be cautious about exaggerated claims and stick to realistic performance expectations.

Battery Life

Battery life is crucial, as it determines how long your scope will last in the field. You don’t want your scope to run out of power during an important hunt. Look for scopes with longer battery life and the option to carry spare batteries.

Durability and Weather Resistance

Lastly, it’s essential to choose a durable scope that can withstand harsh weather conditions. Ensure that the scope is constructed with high-quality materials and is weather-resistant, so it won’t be affected by moisture, dust, or temperature fluctuations.

By considering these crucial factors, you’ll be able to select the perfect thermal rifle scope for your needs. Investing in the right scope can make all the difference in your experience, so take your time and choose wisely. Good luck!

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