Light In The Darkness With Leica

Leica Sport Optics

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Light is the natural medium we use to orient ourselves in our environment. It enables humans to see spatially, estimate distances, and detect movements. Light is the energy of our most highly-developed sense: vision. It gives us control over the motor function of our muscles and enables delicate movements. Light enables us to perceive information, impressions, feelings. Light lets us read and absorb immense amounts of data and knowledge. Light makes us human. Only darkness can limit our human dominance. With our inability to see in the dark, we also lose our confidence and our fine motor skills. Perception becomes essentially limited to sound. Stimuli from our remaining sensory organs are questioned by the brain because they can no longer be verified and checked by sight. We feel insecure. Deep inside us, a primal fear of the dark makes itself known.

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Outside the visible spectrum, humanity has recently developed the ability to analyze infrared light, which is undetectable by our eyes, and “translate” it into visible light using technical tools. We’re talking about thermal imaging devices and residual light amplifiers. In complete darkness, the latter always need artificial light sources, so-called IR emitters, and show the radiation reflected from bodies. Thermal imaging devices, on the other hand, detect the body heat radiated by living beings and convert it into an extremely high-contrast image. The heat radiation is collected in a lens made of silicon, germanium, or zinc selenide, and focused onto a sensor (as in a digital camera). This thermal image sensor, also called a microbolometer, can distinguish thermal differences of 0.1 °C. This information is digitally transferred to a screen and thus becomes visible as an image. Even ice emits heat, so modern thermal imaging devices can depict environmental details even in the Arctic.

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Especially when hunting, thermal imaging devices help us to regain our strongest sense to the fullest degree. Only if the eye can analyze hunting situations with sufficient precision can we make informed decisions about species, habits, sex, behavior, and environment. Hunters need all of this important information to make a safe shot with a clear conscience and fulfill their responsibility towards the game. Thus, the optical image quality of the thermal camera cannot be too high. The equipment must also be able to cope with the rough demands of everyday hunting and rifle recoil. The operation, on the other hand, must be very intuitive, allowing full focus on the game being observed, not on the hunting optics manual. For good reason, hunters have always placed the highest demands on their optical devices. The feel of the stock, the report of the gun, the smell of the powder cloud, and the dry taste in your mouth are all exciting – but what counts at the moment you pull the trigger is a clear view of the target and the associated control over the situation. Optics and our eye are the connection that allows us to proceed with proper care and take responsibility for the hunted animal.
 

Mike Van Horn

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What does this device weigh? Looks like it would put pressure on the base screws, with the weight being that far from the base
 

Red Leg

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I am intrigued by this concept because it keeps thermal shooting far simpler than devices like my ATN Thor. The later seems to have been designed by electronic and software guys trying to build a scope. Sight adjustment is electronic by chasing the last shot. It can work, but it also can "work" through a lot of ammunition. I would assume the Leica concept allows normal telescopic sight adjustment? In fact, I would be surprised if the rifle didn't shoot to the same point of impact once the thermal is attached. I also like being able to quickly convert a regular hunting rifle to a night hunting situation.

I suspect it would generate a bit of additional leverage on normal base screws, though I suspect neither a rail nor Blaser system would have issues.

So when do they appear in the States? Europtic days they have been awaiting them since last August?
 

BeeMaa

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I suspect it would generate a bit of additional leverage on normal base screws, though I suspect neither a rail nor Blaser system would have issues.

So when do they appear in the States? Europtic days they have been awaiting them since last August?
The rifle it's shown on is a Steyer Monobloc that has a very similar means of scope attachment to the Blaser R8. I would imagine that Leica would be very interested in selling to the Euro Blaser market.

What does amaze me is that @Leica Sport Optics would post this and not mention the name of the product in the picture. For those who would like to know, it's the Leica Calonox.
 

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