From our perspective, the MSR platform is one of the most successful of what is available in civilian rifle/carbine format in the States. Do you own an MSR and are choosing optics for it? Then this article is for you! We decided to help you choose the best scope for your carbine.
The main function of a night vision scope is to improve vision in low light by enhancing ambient light. The scope also magnifies objects to make them appear closer and provide a clear and focused image.
We have not written long abstruse texts and many scientific characteristics about the sights on the MSR. In this article, we described everything in absolutely clear and understandable language.
Don't forget that your night vision scope for MSR must be necessarily zeroed. The sighting is carried out at 50-100 yards. Only after that, you will be able to enjoy your new MSR scope 100%.
Review of the Best MSR Night Vision Scopes
Yes, the optics significantly unleash the potential of a personal firearm. But, let's face it - not many of us use a sight that costs twice as much as the cost of the weapon itself. And, the budget optics that we put on our rifles and carbines can hardly be taken seriously as "one optic for all occasions". For competition and hunting, it's still acceptable. But, when the carbine falls down, such sights lose their settings. In a critical situation, it is quite a bad event in a shooter's life.
We have compiled our personal top-5 the best night vision scope for MSR. Don't forget that each type of sight has its own purpose, and we won't be able to review all the options in the scope of one article. But, with the most demanded applications of the sights, it is definitely worth understanding.
Shall we begin?
AGM WOLVERINE PRO-4 3AL1
One of the top sellers for the MSR night vision is the AGM WOLVERINE PRO-4 3AL1. It is a versatile scope that works great for both close targets and 4x magnification. Depending on the distance, you can find the target with the laser. With such a powerful instrument with a clear and crisp image, you simply won't have any more reason to miss again.
The AGM WOLVERINE PRO-4 3AL1 is 100% waterproof, shockproof, and anti-fog. They come with hinged lens caps that can be closed if desired while the rifle is not in use to protect the lenses from damage.
Pros & Cons
From the pluses, we are ready to note the following items. The scope has the Image Intensifier Tube Gen 3. This gives a good performance. The FOV of the scope is 8°, which is great for a wide field of view. The scope has a solid aluminum body structure, which means that the scope is quite lightweight yet rugged at the same time. The 40 hours of continuous operation specified by the manufacturer is a good life span for the battery.
Of the minuses, the scope must be quite expensive. This is just a case where quality has its price.
ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Smart Day/Night Rifle Scope
Perfect performance both day and night is the main feature of the ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Smart Day/Night Rifle Scope. The scope has a ballistic calculator, which is a very cool feature for night optics. And, of course, this scope is also waterproof, shockproof, and has anti-fogging protection.
Pros & Cons
The pros of the scope first and foremost is the ballistic calculator. A powerful dual-core processor and an ultra-sensitive 4K ultra HD sensor allow user to see perfectly through the lens.
Of the downsides, we are willing to voice that the scope does not have a black image picture, only a green one. This is a bit tiring for the eyes and can carry some discomfort.
AGM WOLVERINE-4 NL2
The AGM WOLVERINE-4 NL2 is designed for a wide range of rifles, especially the night vision scopes for MSR. It is one of the finest rifle scopes produced by AGM. Powerful sights show high performance regardless of the application: hunting or target shooting. They work great in any weather: rain, night or sun - good in any case. The body of the device has a built-in hood to avoid glare on sunny days.
You also never have to worry about it getting wet or fogging up during an important shot. The reticle is backlit and can be black (no backlight), green, or even red, depending on the situation you're in. We can say that the AGM WOLVERINE-4 NL2 is one of the best tactical sights for the ar night vision as well as some other rifles.
Pros & Cons
The pros of the AGM WOLVERINE-4 NL2 scope are primarily that it offers excellent performance at a competitive price. It has an adjustable reticle with illumination and many internal side adjustments. The weight of the device is small, due to the tactical aluminum alloy, and this is very important for long maneuvers.
From the disadvantages we are ready to note the small magnification, it is only 4x here. For a sight of this class, it is a small figure.
Sightmark Wraith 4K Max 3-24x50
When you purchase the Sightmark Wraith 4K Max 3-24x50, you will fully appreciate its reliability, much more than other options in its class. The light reproduction in this scope is simply phenomenal and really impressive. Thus, the scope is worth every penny you spend on it and will serve you for so long that you will never regret the purchase.
Pros & Cons
The sight has an improved 4000x3000 ultra-high-definition digital CMOS sensor to detect objects up to 300 yards away, which is incredibly easy to work with. And this is its main advantage.
On the cons, we would like to point out that the scope lens is a bit smaller than the original Wraith when many other scopes have long shown better results in this category. Also, the Picatinny bar is not adapted for left-handed shooters. This can be significantly frustrating to enjoy if you are a representative.
AGM COMANCHE-40 3AL2
The tactical AGM COMANCHE-40 3AL2 is currently one of the best selling sights on the market. The reticle illumination system includes 36 colors, which gives you an advantage when considering such parameters as visibility, terrain type, weather, day-night, and so on. You can be assured of its complete reliability and durability: the scope can stand up with its head held high against any weather that comes it's way.
Pros & Cons
The main advantage of the AGM COMANCHE-40 3AL2 is that it can be mounted in front of a day sight, turning the device into a complete night vision system. It is used with day sights, which have a magnification of up to 12x, it is very useful.
On the downside, the quick-release mount may not be as secure as it may seem at first glance.
How to Choose a Night Vision Scope for MSR
Let's start with the fact that the MSR is the most common rifle in America. It is available for purchase to the civilian population, and even has mock decoding of AR as "American Rifle". And that means that if you bought the MSR for hunting or self-defense, you'll find scope for it without any problems. The only issue here is that there are always many options for accessories and upgrades for the most popular weapon because of the demand. It's easy to get confused here because each sight has its own purpose. It's silly to put a scope with 10x magnification on a rifle, and a collimator makes no sense on a long-range rifle.
In many respects, one of the most universal sights for MSR is a rifle scope. It can be used for rapid-fire shooting at short-range, setting the magnification to the minimum. They have a sufficient magnification margin at medium ranges. Due to the possibility of fast aiming and low sensitivity to flare (insignificant parallax at "working" distances) collimators are more and more popular. And for the high magnification optics, it is still a lot of thoughtful precision shooting.
So how to choose the perfect night vision sight for MSR? Let's understand the characteristics of the sights. What's important and what to look for when choosing a scope for your MSR?
Easy to Mount
To attach the sight to the weapon, it must be fitted with the appropriate mounting base - a slat. The riflescope is attached to the rail with special rings, which vary in diameter and height depending on the size of the scope. The most common are mounting rings O 25,4 and 30 mm. Height of the mount is chosen according to the objective lens diameter: for large objective lenses, only high mounts are suitable, for small ones - any mounts, including low ones. Mounting rings can be performed as a monoblock or can be supplied separately. The first type of mount provides a more rigid fixation and is recommended for mounting on weapons with strong recoil.
In general, handguns are equipped with one of two standard types of rail:
· Weaver-type rail, width 21 mm;
· Dovetail, width 8-12 mm.
Sights with high mounts are suitable for mounting on MSR rifles and their modifications. Besides, high mounts for collimators are used also for sighting in the formed "window" the native sight of the weapon. We would not recommend this way: a more rational choice is an open collimator with the folding lens or any other collimator on a Quick Detachable/ Release bracket.
Today most of manufacturers of weapon optics try to keep up with the technical progress and equip their devices with sensors, systems of automatic backlight control, fiber-optic light collection systems, etc.
Still, when choosing your ideal night vision optics for MSR, make sure it's easy for you to mount the sight to your rifle. Does the bar fit? How quickly can you unbolt and vice versa, reattach the scope to the weapon? Preparing your rifle for operation is a much more important parameter than even the specifications of the scope itself. After all, only a scope mounted in the ideal position will give you a comfortable view and an accurate picture in the eyepiece.
One more important moment when mounting a sight on MSR is the removal of exit pupil. This is the distance from which the eye is best viewed through the scope. But modern sights do not have this problem.
We recommend scopes with optics and magnification for MSR. Why? Because mechanical sights are, of course, a good thing. But we live in the 21st century, and we can use technology. And at more than 100 yards the human eye can fail, especially at night. That is why we use night optics with magnification. Magnification over 10x will be expensive and fragile for your weapon. Also, don't forget about the recoil of the rifle. So the farther your target is, the more you need to magnify the image in your scope.
Weight and Eye Relief
For short-range shooting up to 60 yards, it is better to use sights with small magnification - no more than 6x. Such sights have low weight and size. And due to the large field of view, they allow to shoot accurately and quickly without careful aiming and even with two eyes open.
To ensure sufficient durability, the steel used to be used for manufacturing the sights. However, a steel sight significantly increases the weight of the weapon, which is undesirable for obvious reasons. That's why the body of modern sights is usually made of aluminum alloys, which have high strength at low weight. So, choose the sight for your MSR with the specification of what material it is made of.
Eye relief is also an important parameter for the comfort of working with your night sight. If you have to work longer than a few hours, take care of your eye comfort.
Range And Magnification
The reticle can be used to observe the terrain and also to determine distances to objects if the reticle has a rangefinder function. Magnification, power, or magnification is the ratio of the size of the target in the reticle to what is visible to the naked eye. There is no need to chase the maximum magnification. Not always more is better. The higher the magnification, the smaller the angle of view. It is harder to find the target, to understand what surrounds it, and to control the situation.
Sights of greater magnification are heavier, and it is more difficult to use them. The barrel fluctuations are visually amplified by the sight and distract the shooter. You can see better with strong optics, but it takes more skill and stamina to shoot.
When choosing, pay attention to the material from which the sight is made. Night optics for MSR is a fairly common modification of sights. Therefore, do not let yourself be fooled by the lightweight. After all, this parameter can entail fragile materials from which it is made. Keep in mind that in front of you is a fragile device, so you need to use it with extreme caution.
And for your night scope for MSR to work long and properly you should protect it from bad weather. Especially night optics is afraid of heat, humidity, and direct sunlight. Cover the lenses with caps, avoid mechanical damage, and getting harmful substances (grease, alcohol solutions) on the lenses. Periodically (after 1000-1500 shots) check the internal mounts.
To better see the reticle at dusk, modern sights have LED illumination, usually with dimmer control. It can also be IR illumination. The choice is yours.
The quality, and hence the cost of optics must be comparable with the weapon on which it is mounted. As we said in the beginning - not many of us use a sight, which price is twice the price of the weapon itself. Expensive night vision scopes MSR don't mean that they will be of better quality. Look again at specifications and compare them. Perhaps the manufacturer charges extra markup for the "name" of the brand.
Nowadays, there are many variable-magnification and variable-aperture scopes. One of the most important parameters influencing the aperture ratio is the diameter of the entrance lens: the bigger it is, the lighter the lens will collect, and the brighter the image will be. It must be taken into account if you are planning to shoot at dusk or in low light conditions: for such work select the sight with a large objective lens diameter. But it should be taken into account that with increasing lens dimensions the total weight of MSR night vision scope will also increase.
The place of application of the system - MSR and the sight - is important here. For civil purposes and hunting, you don't need too upgraded devices.
That is, perhaps, all. We hope that we were able to explain to you all the details of working with the night optics on the MSR type rifle. We did it in an understandable and clear language. Further, the choice is yours!