Since the best night vision scopes cost upwards of a few grand, you must look for a compromise if the budget just isn’t there.
But is digital a compromise?
We don’t blame you for having those thoughts as it’s hit and miss between digital night vision scopes.
However, we think Yukon did something right with their Sightline N450S.
If you like the no-hassle approach of having night vision on a simple and easy to use optics platform, you may be exactly who Yukon is trying to please.
Check out the scaled down but improved Sightline NVD!
What We Like: Digital NV rifle scope
What We Don’t Like: Poor battery life
Best Uses: Night Shooting, Day Shooting, Tactical Use, Hunting, Scouting, Varmint Control, Digital NV, Daylight Use, Mid-range Detection, Standalone NV
- Sensor: CMOS 1280x720
- Magnification: 4-16x
- FOV: 5.5-degrees
- Display Resolution: 1024x768
- Eye Relief: 50mm
- Color Modes: 1 (White/Black)
- Battery: 4 hours
- Dimensions: 11.2 x 3.5 x 3.2”/1.85 lbs
Our Verdict: Digital scopes may be cheaper than ever, but the tech is even better too. Following this trend is the Yukon Sightline N450S that takes the approach of less is more. Highly-efficient, high-performing, and low priced. It has all the highs and lows in all the right places and is why it will be a hit in the field.
Who is the Yukon Sightline N450S Best Suited to?
The Sightline N450S will be the target scope for those who can’t push the budget past $1000 for a Gen 2 night vision scope let alone some top Gen 3 night vision scopes that cost three times as much.
This is the primary benefit of buying digital NV scopes – they’re cheaper. However, to give this scope the low price tag it has and to bring quality back to the sensor and optics, Yukon actually rid the Sightline of many digital features that are usually considered non-essential among patrollers and hunters.
So, if this sounds like the type of easy to use and intuitive night vision scope you need, the N450S is all yours. Yukon also makes the Sightline N470S digital night vision scope which is bigger and has higher magnification.
How Does the Yukon Sightline N450S Perform?
In this day and age where consumers are demanding recording and streaming capabilities and WiFi/Bluetooth connectivity, Yukon strays from that path and takes a bold approach towards their new Sightline N450S product – simplicity.
Imagine that? A digital night vision rifle scope without those features? The idea behind the concept is actually a practical move as not all hunters consider these features essential. We like the simplicity and streamlined functionality that puts the focus back where it needs to be – in the optics and NV technology.
Visibility in the dark. Rifle scope tracking accuracy. Lightweight and compact design. Affordable.
These are the traits of the Sightline N450S.
Features & Benefits
Digital NV Rifle Scope
There are some digital scopes that can do it and do it right, and then there are those that promise all the good stuff but don’t deliver. While they’re known for offering a range of digital features that often lure in the buyer, half the time they don’t work and if they do, they eat up a ton of power.
Yukon strays off the path of mediocrity by removing the digital tech that digital NV scopes are known for - they put the cost and quality back where it should be.
You have an HD 1280x720 high-performance sensor with an OLED display and enhanced nighttime sensitivity. You also have digital zoom of 4-16x with scalable reticles to ensure well-placed shots regardless of the power setting. Automatic shut-down is an expected digital feature, and being a digital scope, you can use it safely in daylight hours too.
A much-loved feature is the PiP (Picture-in-Picture) Mode that enhances and magnifies the target area while also retaining full view of the entire FOV. This is one of those digital features we’re glad they kept as once you have it, it’s difficult to go without.
Dedicated Night Vision Rifle Scope
When clip-ons are out of the question because they’re out of the budget, you will be limited to standalone night vision scopes. This isn’t a bad thing, but it does mean freeing up a rifle for dedicated use for night vision. Either that or get quick detach mounts for faster dismounting.
However, don’t forget that this can also be used in daylight hours because of its digital build. The downside to this is you only have the white/black display palette. This may be the reason why you would prefer your day scope during the day and keep this hog and coyote hunting night vision scope for night use.
The N450S is a dedicated scope and is a good length of 11.2” and weighs an industry standard of 1.85 lbs – sort of heavy but not worth complaining about.
One Shot Zero & Freeze
The N450S offers two methods of zeroing – One Shot Zero and Freeze. This is exactly like Pulsar’s zeroing methods offered on their digital NV scopes.
It consists of digitally making reticle adjustments via saving the coordinates of the POI and computer-assisted alignment. You can also use the Freeze function that essentially freezes the zeroing screen so that you don’t have to keep the aiming reticle on the bull’s-eye while you align the corrective reticle to the POI. Both functions are easy to use and intuitive.
The scalable reticles are essentially the equivalent of a day scope’s FFP (First Focal Plane) reticles. Subtension remains the same across the entire zoom range, so you can shoot and holdover regardless of the power setting.
You can save up to 30 zeros by saving 10 zeros per profile – likely overkill but at least the option is there and is competitive with other digital scopes. There are multiple reticle patterns, colors, and brightness levels to choose from.
You could be shooting on an AR-15, 12-gauge shotgun, or 375 H&H. These are very different weapon systems, and the Sightline can be used with all and in between. It’s nice to see specific specs when it comes to recoil resistance as clip-ons are a different story and not all dedicated NV scopes can hold up.
The N450S is rated to 6000 joules for rifles and limited to 12-gauge slugs. For most hunting and tactical purposes, your weapon of choice falls within the allowable range.
One thing to point out is its very simplified and intuitive menu. It’s essentially a single screen menu display that is easy to figure out and toggle between features.
The Yukon scope also comes with a built-in 850nm IR illuminator. This also allows you to use a different accessory on the integrated mini Picatinny rail featured on the scope.
The scope is adequately weather resistant with an IPX4 rating, so it’s splashproof and will hold up to moderate exposure of the elements.
If you’re familiar with stadiametric rangefinders, then you’ll appreciate the feature in this scope. It’s a good way to get distances on targets of known size but useless if you have no idea how to use it. This benefit is entirely subjective as your skills or lack thereof will determine it so.
For a digital scope, it actually provides an impressive detection range of 400 m. This is all due to the quality sensor that also provides crisp, clear, and sharp images.
Poor Battery Life
Unfortunately, digital NV rifles scopes suck the life out of your batteries. IITs can provide 20+ hours of operation with some of the best offering 50 and 60+ hours.
The Yukon Sightline requires 4x rechargeable AA batteries for operation. Using the onboard IR illuminator, you’re looking at 4 hours of operation. Using an external IR, you can stretch that battery life to about 8 hours. Fortunately, Yukon includes the DNV battery pack, batteries, and the charger for the digital scope.
Even though Yukon has struck many digital features from the device, it still consumes quite a lot of power but thus is the inherent downside of digital scopes. The inherent upside? Day and night use and a significantly cheaper price point.
Unfortunately, a mount isn’t a standard accessory in this buy as it is listed as an optional accessory. Unusual – yes, but at least you can choose the mount that best fits your platform from the get-go.
The Sightline N450S is not designed to record video or take photos. This is an intentional design to keep costs down and streamlined focus on night vision scope functionality.
There is no button interface on the Yukon Sightline N450S rifle scope. Instead, a controller is incorporated into the scope for easy control of the menu.
The only buttons are the “On” buttons for the scope and the built-in IR illuminator. The controller requires a long press to activate the main menu. Rotational movement allows toggling between menu settings with short presses of the controller to access a submenu.
The Sensor Menu allows you to access two features: Auto Shutdown and Side Incline. Auto shutdown can easily be achieved by moving the scope at or past a pre-programmed angle to where the sensor recognizes that it is not in shooting position and can be powered down to conserve battery life.
The Side Incline feature allows a user to know in which direction to move the rifle to eliminate side incline.
The Yukon Sightline N450S has been scaled down but in a good way. When having the maximum benefits of smart technology works out in our personal devices, it doesn’t mean we all want it in our scopes.
By focusing on the basics with more power and quality without the distractions that takes time and focus away from a high-pressure shot, Yukon increased consumer appeal to the brand. We’re counted amongst them as a fan of this new move.
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Simon is an avid outdoor enthusiast and the owner of Target Tamers. He is passionate about bringing you the most up to date, accurate & understandable information on sports optics of all kinds and for all applications. When not glassing the local wildlife, you can find him in the garden with his German Shepherd.