NiteOwl NV-G1 Digital Night Vision Camera & Display Review


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NiteOwl is the new kid on the block.

They have started off their line of optoelectronic devices with night vision camera scopes.

They seem to be joining the ranks of other budget brands that manufacture entry-level products to the beginner and affordable market.

If you want the best cheap night vision scope, you should still remain informed about what you’re buying.

So what should you know about the NiteOwl NV-G1 night vision camera scope?

Here are the ins and outs to a product design that is being seen more and more in the budget market.

Quick Overview...

What We Like: Price

What We Don’t Like: New, generic brand

Best Uses: Night Shooting, Day Shooting, Scouting, Varmint Control, Digital NV, Close-Range Detection, Beginners

  • Sensor: N/A
  • Magnification: N/A
  • FOV: Unknown
  • Display Resolution: Unknown
  • Eye Relief: N/A
  • Color Modes: Day & Night
  • Battery: 3x AA
  • Dimensions: 1.14 lbs

Our Verdict: The NiteOwl camera scope is as low budget as it gets for such a system, and it works. It may not blow you away, but to acquire NV at this price point is a solution to your money and NV problems for right now. If you’re willing to assemble the entire system on a day scope that has a side focus or AO and is mounted to a low-recoil rifle, the NV-G1 will please.

Who is the NiteOwl NV-G1 Best Suited to?

The NV-G1 is not a professional night vision device, nor is it real night vision at all. However, it does provide visibility in the dark for close-range hunting and shooting.

It’s best suited to low-cal cartridges like 17 HMR, 22LR, and possibly 223, so think along the lines of reducing the rat, possum, squirrel, and rabbit population that have free run of the property. With night vision on your side, it won’t only be a productive night but a fun night too.  

How Does the NiteOwl NV-G1 Perform?

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The NiteOwl NV-G1 is a neat, little night vision system. It’s not real night vision per se, but at least you can see in the dark whereas you couldn’t see before.

It comes with all the parts needed to acquire the advantage of hunting and shooting in the dark. There is some assembly involved as there are multiple parts to mount. But, since it’s not real night vision, you won’t have to dismount it during the day because bright light (solar or artificial) will not damage the optics.

The NV-G1 allows you to use your day scope’s reticle, however, you’re not putting your eye to the scope to make the shot. Instead, you’ll see everything on the 3.5” LCD screen which is entirely user adjustable.

Because you’re depending solely on IR illumination for night vision visibility, you will be limited in detection range. Hopefully, your day scope has a side focus or AO feature because that is how you will focus the image.

All in all, it’s a fantastic idea of providing limited night vision if you’re on a budget. Because it works, it’s a decent buy to acquire instant night vision for varmint and coyote hunting with limited recoil rifles. It will give you time to save up for what we think is real night vision worth buying.

Features & Benefits

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NiteOwl NV-G1 Digital Night Vision Scope for Rifle Hunting with Camera and...
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Price

There are camera scope systems that are popping up all over the night vision market. It’s not real night vision with an image intensifier tube. It’s more akin to digital night vision but made simpler. With three essential components, the camera, display screen, and IR flashlight, you can essentially build your own night vision setup.

These scope systems cost anywhere between $100-$400, and they’re produced by budget brands. If you’re strapped for funds, you may have no choice than to consider such a product. We don’t recommend it as a permanent NV system, but for night vision on a budget, it’ll do – for now.

Camera Scope

With every component needed to assemble and mount, it seems intensive and almost invasive to have so many accessories built into your weapon system. But this is the downside to buying night vision as cheaply as you can.

The upside is you can use your day scope with its familiar functions and view everything through the 3.5” display screen. The screen has basic but necessary functions such as adjustable brightness, contrast, and saturation. You can also apply the filters included with the package, but they will dim the screen and reduce visibility at range.

The camera is hidden within a sleeve that attaches to the eyebell. To focus the reticle, there is a focusing lens on the back side of the camera module. To focus the image for a target at any distance must be done with a day scope that has a side focus or adjustable objective.

Mounting

The NiteOwl night vision scope comes with everything needed to assemble and mount the system. The IR flashlight mounts to the scope via mounting ring with attached mini Picatinny rail. It mounts between the objective lens bell and turrets. The display mounts to the scope via mounting ring between the turrets and the eyebell.

The camera module mounts to the eyebell. A silicone ring is included to shimmy onto the eyebell to ensure a tight fit of the module and to protect the scope from any damage from attachment. The battery pack is attached to the rifle stock. Two cables connect the battery pack and display screen to the camera module.

Detection Range

NiteOwl claims you will be able to achieve 200-yard plus detection in the dark. Rarely is this true of budget night vision. You may be able to detect movement at that range, but it’s more than likely that positive identification and usable shooting ranges will max out at around 100 yards. Further distances may cause a pixelated image.

Regardless of claimed detection ranges, it is a fact that you must use IR illumination to acquire any night vision visibility. Usually, the IR included with budget packages are not powerful enough to gain visibility beyond 30-40 yards, so an upgrade may very well be the first thing on your list.

Recoil Resistance

NiteOwl provides no information about the camera scope system’s recoil resistance. Genuine clip-on night vision systems are typically rated for 3500 joules of recoil energy resistance, and we doubt this is the case with the camera scope.

We would rate this system as recoil resistant to maybe that of 223 (556) cartridges for AR-15 at its max. Low-recoil weapons are highly recommended for use with the NiteOwl. If in doubt of its durability, it would make an excellent night vision setup for a rimfire rifle for pest control. Who doesn’t like having night vision advantage on rats, coons, and squirrels?

Limitations

New, Generic Brand

NiteOwl is new on the scene and has limited products to date. We don’t like that their name is too similar to Night Owl and this can easily lead to buyer confusion and misconception.

However, in terms of budget night vision, it doesn’t get any more budget than this. This may provide an avenue for those without the funds to acquire night vision where they would otherwise go without.

If you’re content with buying through a trusted retailer, you may find satisfaction with the product. If not, look to increase the budget and buy from a known, established brand.

Popular Questions

What Type of Batteries does the NiteOwl NV-G1 Use?

Fortunately, no specialized batteries are required to operate the NiteOwl camera scope. The NV-G1 requires 3x AAA batteries for the included IR illuminator and 8x AA batteries for the battery pack to run the camera and display.
That’s a lot of batteries to operate the NiteOwl, and it provides approximately 1-1.5 hours of operation – possibly longer depending on settings.

Is the NiteOwl Hunting Camera Scope Waterproof?

The NiteOwl NV-G1 is not waterproof. It’s only rated to withstand light splashes. It must be covered during rain and bad weather to protect the electrical system.

What is the Warranty on the NiteOwl Night Vision Scope?

The NV-G1 comes with a 1-year manufacturer warranty. It must be registered with NiteOwl in order to claim warranty coverage on defects of workmanship and materials. It is not owner transferable and starts from date of purchase.

Is NiteOwl a Good Brand?

NiteOwl is not to be confused with Night Owl as they are a different brand with obviously a similar name. Not much is known about NiteOwl except they’ve turned up on scene with very cheap night vision scope camera designs.
There is no information about the brand, customer service, or contact information. This obligates you in buying from a trusted retailer to protect your purchase with their return/refund plans.

Conclusion

These night vision camera scopes are curious contraptions, but the truth of it is, you’re limited to this type of NVD at this price point.

It’s a good alternative if you can’t yet afford real night vision or at least digital night vision. It at least gets you outside tonight hunting around the barn and playing the role of ranch hand.

For the price, it’s a contraption that should be considered. Mount it to your rimfire just for fun or as a dedicated pest control night vision scope system. In the meantime, tuck money away for the high-end night vision scope you want on your .308 or 6.5 Creedmoor. This is the cheap alternative that satisfies for right now.

NiteOwl NV-G1 Digital Night Vision Scope for Rifle Hunting with Camera and...
13 Reviews
NiteOwl NV-G1 Digital Night Vision Scope for Rifle Hunting with Camera and...
  • Rifle Hunting Digital Night Vision patented products NiteOwl NV-G1 Night vision is the perfect night vision unit for any hunter, delivering high quality, clear night...
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