TNVC Night Vision
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From Sky & Telescope's 2018 Hot Products Award of the Night Vision System from TNVC & Tele Vue
Tactical Night Vision Company and Tele Vue Optics teamed up to create an unusually versatile night-vision system for astronomy. While the military-grade TNV/PVS-14 Gen3 night-vision monocular can be used as a standalone 1x viewer, a custom adapter allows it to connect to any Tele Vue eyepiece that is Dioptrx compatible, opening up a wide range of telescopic observing possibilities. And there's also an adapter for the Tele Vue FoneMate.— Sky & Telescope, (Editors). "Hot Products 2018". Sky & Telescope (Jan. 2018).
- As such, it's fair to ask why the current generation of image intensifiers hasn't played a greater role in amateur astronomy. If there's a simple answer to that question, I don't know it. But I do know that this could change, thanks to a recent collaboration between the Tactical Night Vision Company (TNVC) and Tele Vue Optics. The resulting night-vision system (picked as one of our 2018 Hot Products in last January's issue) proved to be the most impressive visual light amplifying setup I've ever used.
- Perhaps a good way to illustrate the magnitude increase due to the monocular [alone] is through a pair of observations made from my backyard on a night of below-average transparency. At the time I struggled to see naked-eye stars in the Little Dipper fainter than Polaris and the two at the end of the dipper's bowl, but the monocular easily showed more stars in the area that are plotted in Sky & Telescope's Pocket Star Atlas. That's a gain in the ballpark of three plus magnitudes.
- Speaking of telescopic observations, this is where the TVNC Night Vision system really eclipsed my experience with the I3 Piece [sold by Collins Electro Optics]. The main reason is magnification. The I3 Piece has the fixed magnification equivalent of roughly a 25-mm eyepiece. The TNVC system, on the other hand, connects directly to any Dioptrx-compatible Tele Vue eyepiece and thus allows you to vary magnification by simply switching eyepieces.
- As much as I savor the "natural" view through a telescope eyepiece, the increased magnitude reach available with the TNVC system became almost addictive at times. This was especially true when I was hunting small star clusters. The increased number of stars visible was one reason, but the ease of seeing even the faintest stars with direct vision was equally appealing.
— Dennis di Cicco, "Image Intensified Observing." Sky & Telescope. (2018 June): 58-62. Read Full Review.