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Essentially, night vision-capable equipment picks up on wavelengths which are not visible to the human eye. The device will then convert those waves into an image which can be viewed by the human eye.
The EOTech night vision devices line contains two products: the M914 and M2124. These two models are used by U.S. Armed Forces, police departments, and government agencies, as well as other military organizations around the world. In the U.S. military, they are known as AN/PVS-14 (M914) and AN/PVS-24 (M2124). The M2124 also has a long range version, M2124LR.
EOTech are not the only ones making them for the military, though. It shares this contract with several other companies.
How Does Night Vision Work?
Night vision devices work by using the following methods:
Natural lighting – collecting any available light (stars, moon, etc.)
Thermal imaging – collecting heat waves which targets give off
Image intensification – using active illumination, by way of a charged photocathode plate. In other words, light is captured beforehand, and is then used to convert and display the image. This causes all image-intensifying devices to produce a green image. The intensified images (and the devices who produce them) come in different standards of technology and quality. These standards are known as generations. Generations run from I through III+
These two EOTech night vision devices make use of the imagine intensification method.
- Magnification – 1x
- Objective lens – 27mm
- Dimensions (L x W x H) – 4.5 x 2 x 2.2 inches
- Weight – 10.2 oz.
- Eye relief – 1 inch
- Batteries – 1 AA
- Battery life – 40 hours (room temperature)
Includes head and helmet mount adapters, and MIL-STD-1913 (picatinny) rail adapter.
M2124 (PVS-24 type) / M2124LR
- Magnification – 1x
- Objective lens – 55mm / 110mm
- Weight – 27.2 oz. / 36 oz.
- Batteries – 1 CR123 lithium battery / 1 CR123 or AA lithium battery
- Battery life – 16 hours (room temperature)
- Detection range – 328 yards / 1,547 yards
The M2124 can also be used as a standalone, handheld night vision device. It is a combination day/night sight, and this greatly reduces the loss of zero.
The long range model is ideal for 4x – 20x rifle scopes. It mounts in front of the scope, and allows the shooter to maintain constant eye relief and position.
Both sights employ Gen III image intensification technology, and are highly dependable. The price for these devices is $4,199 for the M914, $9,399 for the M2124, and $9,799 for the M2124LR.
These items are controlled under the U.S. International Traffic in Arms Regulations. Exporting is prohibited, without explicit permission from the Department of State. However, in spite of these regulations, EOTech’s night vision devices have been released for sale to the general public, in 2009.
Purchasing an EOTech product ensures the highest quality. The line of EOTech holographic sights are widely praised for their abilities.
The Importance of Night Vision
Night vision sights offer the shooter a unique ability to be able to see targets in the dark. If you are in a scenario where being detected means danger it is easy to see the importance of night vision. As a younger man I spent 3 years in military service. I was in a special unit and that meant we journeyed on many a night mission. At the time I was stationed in the Middle East and night raids were almost a nightly occurrence. We were venturing into territory that was in the middle of nowhere. You can imagine that it got real dark. Having state of the art night vision devices was integral to the missions success.
We were mainly using image intensification devices and they did a great job at adding light to an otherwise “dark” scenario. I have had some experience with thermal imaging devices. They tend to give you a slightly clearer image. The variance in color allows you to discern people from objects easier. You need to be calm, cooled and collected when going out on these missions. Having a device that allows you to see in the night gave us an upper hand that cannot be overstated.
I have been out of the military for quite some time now but I still use night vision devices. I am a avid hunter and use the skills I learnt in the military to hunt deer and other big game. The woods come alive at night. You wouldn’t believe if you didn’t see with your own eyes. I use the M2124LR on my hunting trips. I bought mine secondhand because those bad boys are expensive! It was still a pretty penny but why settle for anything but the best. I am usually shooting at longer ranges so the M2124LR is the best fit for what I need.
I can remember one night when in particular when my night vision came in handy. It was around 11:30pm and I was ready to call it a night. I had been shooting from a tree stand all day and my legs were getting tired. I was about to call it a night when I heard some rustling about 200-300 yards away. I quickly brought my rifle into shooting position. I stared through my night vision sight and saw two glowing eyes staring back at me. I pulled that trigger so fast that buck never saw it coming! Suffice to say my family and I ate well that month.
To conclude night vision devices are extremely useful tools. No matter the application, if you are trying to see in the dark without being seen these devices are what you need.