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Best Night Vision Googles 2023

Night-vision goggles can be used everywhere. Many of the best night-vision goggles are now affordable enough for regular usage, but the most advanced ones are still kept for the military and Hollywood action movies. You can get goggles that help you see the campsite in a different way or see when you have a clear shot. NVGs are frequently linked with special operations, so it's natural if you're confused. Find the best night-vision goggles with this guide.

The best night-vision goggles: reviews and recommendations

We recommend these night-vision goggles for boating, hiking, and duty.

Best overall: Bushnell Equinox X650 Monocular

Bushnell Equinox X650 Monocular

Best overall


  • Battery: 4 AA batteries
  • Water-resistant: Yes, IPX4 standard
  • Tripod mountable: Yes
  • Optical magnification: 5X

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The Bushnell Equinox X650 Night Vision Monocular enhances nighttime hiking and hunting. The 32mm objective lens allows in lots of light and provides a 26-foot field of view at 100 yards. The built-in columnated infrared illuminator allows you to see far away. The deer or owl you're hunting or watching will appear larger with 5X zooming. These infrared goggles are under eight inches long, six inches wide, and under a pound. Once the batteries are installed, you will have hours of use to see your target at night. 

  • Tripod mountable
  • Color daytime viewing
  • Built-in video recording
  • Does its best in ambient light/moonlight

Best for boaters: SiOnyx Aurora  

SiOnyx Aurora

Best for Boaters


  • Battery: 1 replaceable, rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • Water-resistant: Yes, IP67 rated
  • Tripod mountable: No, but can be worn around the neck
  • Optical magnification: 3X

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The SiOnyx Aurora camera can survive a water fall because of its IP67 waterproof rating. waterproof case included. The camera has GPS, a compass, and an accelerometer for on-water use. You may broadcast night footage from the camera to your smartphone using infrared technology. The 32GB microSD card stores footage. All of that is the weight of a small night-vision monocular. 

  • Weapon-rated
  • Provides full color in darkness
  • Sync to SiOnyx app for wireless video streaming
  • No auto-focusing

Best for military precision: Armasight PVS-14 Gen 3 Multi-Purpose Monocular

Armasight PVS-14 Gen 3 Multi-Purpose Monocular

Best for military precision


  • Battery: Single AA battery
  • Water-resistant: Yes, IP67 rated
  • Tripod mountable: Yes
  • Optical magnification: 1X

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The Armasight PVS-14 Gen 3 Multi-Purpose Monoculars are utilized by militaries worldwide, proving their seriousness. The best night-vision goggles have infrared illumination and a 40-degree field of view. Police and military units use them naturally. Military night-vision goggles with up to 50 hours of battery life automatically adjust to your environment's brightness. They're also ergonomic with simple controls. This NVG cannot leave the U.S. due to ITAR regulations.

  • Military-grade and combat tested
  • Included 3-year warranty
  • Long battery life
  • Expensive

Best for kids: JStoon Night-Vision Goggles

JStoon Night-Vision Goggles

Best for Kids


  • Battery: 6 AA batteries
  • Water-resistant: Yes, IP 56 rated
  • Tripod mountable: Yes
  • Optical magnification: 3X

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Many adults could use the JStoon Night-Vision Goggles for kids. They have 3X magnification, 4X digital zoom, an 850 nm infrared illuminator, and can see 984 feet in complete darkness. The goggles' 2.31-inch TFT screen displays up to an hour of 960p high-resolution video for impatient kids and adults. The best night-vision goggles have larger lenses than the 25mm objective lens. The IP56 designation merely protects against water and dust, so if your kid damages them, don't worry—they're cheap.

  • Great for casual use or beginners
  • Adjustable night vision brightness
  • Video recording capabilities
  • IP56 rating offers limited protection against water and dust

Best budget: CREATIVE XP Digital Night Vision Monocular

CREATIVE XP Digital Night Vision Monocular

Best Budget


  • Battery: 5 AA batteries
  • Water-resistant: Yes, IP56 rated
  • Tripod mountable: Yes
  • Optical magnification: 3X

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With a 25mm objective lens and 650-foot range, the CREATIVE XP Digital Night Vision Monocular is one of the best cheap night-vision devices. LED illuminators allow clear vision in full darkness without ambient light. You can also shoot images, record soundless video, and play it back. It comes with a USB cord and a 32 GB microSD card, however it supports 128 GB cards. Best of all, at just over 10 ounces, it's portable for travel.

  • Lightweight
  • Under $100
  • SD card included
  • Not military grade

How to choose the best night-vision goggles

NVGs create images by amplifying the limited quantity of visible light after sunset. Like classic TVs, they use sophisticated technology to convert light into electrical current and back into visible light. Selecting the best night-vision goggles is difficult. Consider these key features:

Have you decided on a style?

Goggles, binoculars, and monoculars provide night vision. Night-vision goggles cover both eyes and are head-mounted. Night-vision goggles have no magnification, unlike binoculars. Night-vision monoculars use one eye and are smaller than the other two alternatives. So binoculars are best for seeing objects farther away, monoculars are best for reducing pack weight, and NVGs are best for easy-to-use night vision, especially when moving.

The next generation—do you need them?

Generations 1–4 are the best night-vision goggles. Generation One is the oldest and cheapest, and amateurs use it most. Military NVGs are created with generations two and above and can cost 10 times as much as Gen 1 technology, although they are still sold to the public.

Light amplification intensity is the key difference. Gen 2 and higher may reach 30,000 times the light gain, whereas Gen 1 maxes out at 900. Gen 1's 1,000-pixel images are blurrier than Gen 2's 5,000, especially at longer distances. Gen 2 and above have more light sensitivity than Gen 1, which bottoms out at 240 UA/lm. Many U.S. military units utilize Gen 3 because it has over 300 yards of range, 10,000 hours of use, and versatility with scopes, camera adapters, and magnification lenses. Gen 4 has certain benefits over Gen 3, such as faster light adaptation. Augmented reality will certainly improve night vision.

Can you feel the heat?

Thermal night vision allows for dark vision. Instead of converting light into an electrical current and amplifying it, thermal goggles sense heat and outline the world based on hot and cold. Infrared goggles show the deer you're following in vivid red and orange against the night's blue. Thermal goggles work best in extremely low-light conditions where there is no light to amplify.

Would you like to see it again?

Some of the best night-vision goggles include cameras that allow you to record and save footage.Night vision goggles and cameras are required for owl and northern lights photography.Many night goggles have 32GB SD cards for storage. Some NVGs feature built-in LCD screens, so you can watch your footage without transferring files.


How much are night vision goggles?

Night vision goggles cost $100 to $4,000 for military-grade models.

Do night-vision goggles work in complete darkness?

Night-vision goggles work. They allow you to see football fields ahead in absolute darkness. The limited amount of light photons present at night are converted into an electrical current and amplified before being converted back into visible light by night-vision goggles.Thermal goggles allow you to see images in a smoky building even without light. Night-vision goggles cannot see through walls. Daytime use can damage most NVRs.

Why is night vision expensive?

Many factors make night vision expensive. Technology that can read heat or turn practically invisible light into visible light is expensive to make. Low demand also raises pricing. Many manufacturers have expensive military NVG contracts, raising prices. Affordable options may have fewer features.

Can citizens buy night-vision goggles?

There are no rules against owning them. The U.S. State Department must approve military-grade or tactical exports.

Conclusion on the Best Night Vision Goggles

The best night-vision goggles transform night vision. For military precision, you need upgraded night-vision goggles with technology that can amplify low light by the tens of thousands. However, that technology will cost thousands. Night goggles can light a campground or hunting stand for 10 times less. The best night-vision goggles depend on your vision needs and budget.