Night vision goggles for sale: The legal aspect

Seeing a pair of night vision goggles for sale might automatically bring to mind stealth, intrigue and spying. That's quite normal, since movies have been secondary - or in some cases, the primary -educators of the masses for longer than anyone can remember. However, borderline or outright illegal activities aren't the only thing that night vision equipment is meant for; there are several legitimate uses, like animal tracking, military operations (legality questionable but accepted), and nighttime security.

Night vision goggles: An unnatural hue
Night Vision Goggles For Sale
Of the different makes and models of night vision goggles for sale, most fall into two categories depending on the way they work – image enhancement and thermal imaging. The first type is the one that most people recognize – the greenish image that you see in most films - takes the limited light available and amplifies it to a level where it makes the image visible to the naked eye – sometimes to an amazingly clear extent. The second type uses heat signatures to form an image in which living objects are discernable from inanimate ones. It works with the lower-spectrum infrared light that is naturally emitted by objects – the more excited the atoms, the redder the light – and displays it in a visible manner.

Night vision binoculars: Not your typical nightwear

There are several brands of night vision goggles for sale on the market, starting from as little as $300 and going all the way up to ten or fifteen times that much. If you go to you can see the entire range, but don't expect to see anything that looks like swimming or lab goggles – these are typically of a double-tube design because of all the internal components that go into the construction, and rather look like binoculars fitted to a strappy number that goes over your head. Come to think of it, that sounds like something else you might wear at night!

The lighter side of night vision: Cheap night vision goggles for sale

At the lower end of the price ladder you'll find night vision goggles for sale from makers like Yukon and ATN. They offer binocular as well as monocular designs and are based on military-tested technology. They're perfect for close-up wildlife observation, night-fishing and security operations like neighborhood watches, and have an effective range of about 100 to 150 meters. They also come with optional security-related items like flashlights and speed guns for catching speeders at night. The whole package can cost you from between $270 and $300 dollars. The ATN Viper night vision goggles are said to be the lightest and smallest on the market.

Medium priced night vision for sale: For the moderately wealthy

A couple of rungs up you'll find models like the Night Owl NOBG-1 from the Tactical series. Retailing at about $770, these 14 oz. units come with detachable head mounts so you can use them as standalone binoculars as well; they've got a range of about 140 meters but are also ideal for extreme close-up, and have extra wide vision to boot. The best part is, while the normal operation is for low-light environments, there's also a built-in infrared illuminator for zero-light conditions. Another really cool add-in is a push-button flip-up feature that moves the binoculars out of the way in an instant, so you don't have to keep removing the head mount every time.

Night vision goggles for sale: For the serious night-prowler

For a really professional, robust system, you could always go with the ATN PSV7. It's got detection and recognition ranges of 300 meters and 225 meters, so you can go from "who's there" to "oh, it's you, Jones" in just a few seconds even in the dead of night. You know they're really reliable because these are the same ones the US Army ground troops get as standard issue. With 2 AA-size batteries they can run for a maximum of about 20 hours, and all the controls are digital. The system is capable of operating in total darkness with the help of the infrared illuminator, and there's also an automatic cut-off mechanism when the system is exposed to sudden bright light. With a price tag of $3,300 these 1.5 lb. head-mounted binoculars are about middle-of-the-road when it comes to cost.

Night vision goggles: Where they're NOT for sale

There are also way more expensive models with lists of features as long as your arm, but the ones mentioned here should be more than sufficient for the amateur night-watcher for a range of uses from keeping tabs on your neighborhood to extreme close-up wildlife observation. However, most of the models of night vision goggles for sale can only be bought and used in the U.S. because of export restrictions so even if you plan to buy one within the country and take it out, you might need special permits, so be sure to check rather than have it confiscated at the airport.