Long range thermals T75/UTM/REAP-IR 60mm

Aug 5, 2012
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#1
I’m looking at buying my next thermal for long range ID and shooting. What are your thoughts on the pros/cons between these options?

FLIR T75 - $12k new
BAE UTM 25 micron - $9k used/legit
Trijicon REAP-IR 60mm - $9k new

I currently have an IR Patrol, IR Hunter 35mm, and PVS-30. I hunt in south Texas with trees and brush so the PVS-30 doesn’t help much at distance to ID bobcat vs turkey, etc.

Therefore, I’m looking for a thermal option to better ID smaller animals at 200-600 yards and shoot 200-300 yards.

I know there is the clip on vs dedicated difference, but I’m mainly wondering how the image compares between these thermals at say 4x or 8x?
 
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Jan 5, 2014
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Wabaunsee, KS
#2
The Trijicon 60mm lens options are great for LD spotting. I'd say that's their purpose in life ... whether the REAP2, the Patrol 250XR or the Mk3.

I use a Mk3 60mm on a 5.56(10.3) as my night spotter ...



For long range shooting at night I pair it up with the UTC-x currently usually riding on the 7.62(22)



Shown with the PVS-14 on back only for the purpose of checking zero of the LRF (Radius) on top. It gets removed after that.

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Of the ones on your list ... the Trijicon 60mm is the spotter I'd go with. Larger lens let's in more "information" and you have 4.5x optical magnification to enable long distance PID. And the image is very useful at 2x digital and still useful for 4x digital. A story on this. Once I was scanning in my alfalfa patch on 4.5x optical. I saw a black spot pretty far out there, say 300yds. It wasn't moving, so i continued my 360. After completing the 360 and seeing nothing else interesting, I came back to the black spot. I cranked up to 2x digital (9x net) magnification and thought I could make out a head. Maybe it was a Coon or a opossum? But it could've been a calf (my cattle are often in that alfalfa patch in the cool season and it was the cool season). So, I cranked up to 4x digital (18x net) and yes it gets fuzzy up there, but I could finally see movement.. The critter's mouth was moving, it was eating something. I couldn't take the risk of shooting the critter because I still did not know what it was (no PID). So I fired a shot designed to miss, call it "recon by fire" ... and the yote went from laying down eating to standing up running flat out at 40 mph in 0 nanoseconds ... unfortunately my brain was not prepared for that rapid transition and my "hail mary" follow up shot had epsilon change in hecque of connecting. I learned from that, that if you will do recon by fire, you need to be mentally prepared for what MIGHT happen.
But I tell the story to illustrate, that in that case, I could clearly see more on 4x digital than I could on 2x or 1x digital. So that 4x digital does have "some" use.

For LD shooting the only one on your list that is optimized for that is the FLIR T75 which can support 8x/12x magnification on the day scope. You can then use your day scope reticle for holding and make shots out to 500yds depending on what you are shooting at.

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The image on the trijicon 60mm is good enough to shoot with out a long ways, but with no ballistic reticles you'll be using the critter as the reticle, which depending on the critter might be tough at 300yds.

The UTM is a different critter, more of a "super Patrol". But more useful at intermediate and short distances. The UTM and the Trijicon's all share the BAE OASYS cores. I'd get a skeet instead of a UTM and put the skeet on my head for hands free spotting while moving. The Skeet can DETECT out a long ways ... cows at 1800 yds ? No problem. Then you an use the Mk3 60mm to confirm PID.

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So if you have to buy now, I'd get both the trijicon 60mm and the T75. Then you can use the Trijicon to spot with and the T75 to shoot with.

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If you can wait maybe six months on the thermal clipon .. .Trijicon "might" be restarting the manufacturing for the UTC xii and you could buy one of those instead of the T-75. The UTC-x I have can get up to 16x easily and push up to 20x with some fuzz.

In the mean time, use the Trijicon 60mm for spotting and the PVS-30 with ELIR-3 for shooting.
 

deersniper

Online Training Member
Feb 22, 2007
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N. Maryland
#3
The UTM is a great scanner. Has good tech/processing and will pick up what other units will miss. Isn't great for long distance id but great for speed/fov and covering areas quickly.
 
Jan 5, 2014
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Wabaunsee, KS
#4
And BTW, you can upgrade your Mk3(or mk2) 35mm to a 60mm to reduce the cost of having a 60mm trijicon. Then engage with the PVS-30 and ELIR-3 illuminator out to 600yds. That would be your cheapest path I think.
 

CBDR

Sergeant
Mar 4, 2017
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Jacksonville FL.
#5
The ELIR-3 owns the night. Paired up with the PVS-30,,, the hogs are taken some heavy losses. Thank you Wig & Kill Switch.
Scan, acquire, engage & recover.
 
Jan 5, 2014
1,220
198
63
Wabaunsee, KS
#7
No, but I'd say the ELIR-3 is a better VALUE illuminator peq-15.

I see full power peq-15s on ebay for anywhere from $1,500 to $2,500 ...
ELIR-3s I see on Amazon for $350. So, I can have at least 4 ELIR-3 for the price of one peq-15.

The ELIR-3 does work out to 600yds. That's enough for me!
 
Dec 23, 2008
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ohio
#10
i see very little difference in illumination ability between the luna and a full power peq 15. the peq may have it by a small margin but its negligible.

what the luna almost always has though is a much cleaner beam/lens than the peq making it much more usable
 
#12
The mkiii 60mm is great for ID and what’s down range at night. Paired up with the radius, you have a known distance to judge size of critter. If you hunt known areas and know the yardage to the critter the radius is not needed. But large open fields it’s a must at night for me. Haven’t been out after critters in months, had torn a few muscle’s in right shoulder. Now just waiting on some of the fields getting cleared of vegetation as we have had some wet weather down here in S Tex.

Stadium lights 300yds mkiii 60mm
 
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