Best Clip-On Thermal Scopes in 2021 – Top-Rated Picks & Guide [September Updated]

Hunting is quite an interesting and thrilling experience in the wild. Have you experienced hunting in the wide natural field, especially at night? If not, try it at least once in your lifetime.

Hunting at night is very strange with a little fear of wild animals. Hunters or night shooters usually rely on advanced technology gears that act as extra support for them in the field. 

There are a lot of tactical skills you have to know about hunting. A shot can be done successfully only if all your equipment runs together. 

The thermal scope is one of the important tools that are developed with modern thermal imaging technology, including more advanced features. So that you’ll get a clear and precise output at a faster rate.

Our Top 3 Recommendations

Best Overall

AGM Global Vision Anaconda-Micro Compact

Best Value

AGM Global Vision Anaconda Medium Range

Best Long Range

ATN ThOR 4, 384×288 Clip-On Thermal Scope

The clip-on thermal scope is a new version of thermal scopes that has versatile functions. You need not want to mount it; just clip it onto the rifle without removing the daytime optic so that you can get better visibility.

Clipping on the thermal scopes to your rifle takes your hunting adventure to the next level. It does not need any light source to run. No matter whether day or night, clip-on thermal scopes work even in total darkness without any restrictions.

We’ve spent a lot of time researching the best clip on thermal scopes that are available in the market today. In this article, We’ve listed the 6 Best Clip-on Thermal Scopes in detail, and we hope that this guide will help you to pick the right choice for your adventure.

What is Thermal Scope?

The thermal scope is one of the hunting accessories that is mounted at the top of your rifle. It is commonly used for night hunting to gain an enhanced vision in the darkness.

The thermal scope is based on the principle of infrared technology (Wikipedia). The infrared sensor captures the heat emitted by the objects in the surrounding. This heat energy is then converted into an image and is reflected back to the eyepiece. So you’ll get a clear vision of your target even at a longer distance.

Why are Thermal Scopes Different from Other Scopes? 

Thermal scopes are versatile scopes that can be used during both day and night, unlike night vision scopes or day scopes. A traditional day scope can be used only during day time and it can’t help you during the night. Because day scopes are purely made of lenses and magnifiers that can easily take down the targets.

On the other hand, thermal scopes are based on sensors and light detectors that give you a perfect shot at any light conditions. That’s why thermal scopes are very essential for hunting.

What are Clip-on Thermal Scopes?

AGM Anaconda 1×50 mm Clip-on Thermal Scope

Clip on thermal scopes are designed to sit directly onto your day scope with just a single clip-on attachment. 

The clip-thermal scope can be used based on your convenience. You can simply attach it to your rifle and use on its own or you can also use it along with your day scope to see your target through various obstacles like bushes, tree branches, smoke, dust, etc.

The major benefit of clip on thermal scope is the ease of use. For example, if you are in a combat situation or hunting field, you can easily switch to your favorite target system whether it may be your day scopes or thermal optics. 

Clip-on thermal scopes can be used as a standalone for short-range shooting, and also acts as a monocular to survey your surroundings. 

Clip-on thermal scopes are lightweight and clip easily to your rifle without giving overweight to you. It comes in handy even in all tough hunting scenarios. So don’t miss it.

6 Best Clip On Thermal Scope in 2021 - Reviewed

1. AGM Global Vision Anaconda-Micro Compact 1x50mm Thermal Imaging Riflescope

If you’re a novice hunter and looking for the best clip-on thermal scope for a better experience, then AGM Global Vision Anaconda-Micro Compact 1x50mm Thermal Imaging Riflescope is the perfect option for you. 

The AGM Global Vision is one of the excellent brands for manufacturing high-quality optics such as thermal scopes, night vision optics, and clip-on sights, etc. 

It will be the perfect companion of your day optic to provide incredible performances on the field with its excellent thermal technology.

Best Overall Thermal Clip-On Scope

5 / 5
5/5

Brand

AGM Global Vision

Magnification

1x

Battery

CR123

Weight

15.2 oz

Objective lens

50 mm

Resolution

This Anaconda-Micro compact thermal clip on is one of the compact and lightweight optics on the market that makes it fit perfectly in your pocket. When talking about the resolution of this thermal clip-on system, it comes with the uncooled thermal detector with a resolution of 384×288 that lets you identify the small temperature variations and captures high-quality thermal images with fine details.

Display & Lens 

This clip-on thermal scope contains an OLED display that has 1024×768 pixels resolution to provide thermal images with improved clarity and sharp details. The 1x fixed magnification of this optic allows you to view the objects clearly at a particular distance range. 

It comes with a large objective lens of 50mm that provides better images of the target and supports a wider field of view. With this clip-on system, you can capture images and record videos by connecting the system with your devices using the app. 

Brightness Levels

The thermal sensor present in this thermal clip-on identifies the temperature ranges between -25 to -50 degrees Celsius. The refresh rate of this clip-on scope is 50 Hz that provides crisp and clear images of the target with more vibrant colors. 

Moreover, it comes with the brightness settings with 10 levels that allow you to adjust the brightness level based on the lighting condition of your surrounding environment. With this brightness setting, you can work in any lighting conditions without the need for additional light.

Construction

After mounting this Anaconda clip-on thermal scope with your daytime optic, you can get better thermal images without any separate equipment. The compact size and lightweight of this optic allow you to easily carry this wherever you go. 

Moreover, it comes with a durable construction to withstand heavy recoils and allows you to hunt in all weather conditions since it provides waterproof and fog proof performance.

Pros

Cons

AGM Global Vision Anaconda-Micro Compact 1x50mm is the best Clip-on Thermal Scope available in the market and is one of the premium pick on my list. It is a perfect choice for night hunters.

2. AGM Global Vision Anaconda 1x50mm Medium Range Thermal Imaging Clip-On System

The next runner-up product in my list is the AGM Global Vision Anaconda 1x50mm Medium Range Thermal Clip-on Scope. It is one of the best 50mm riflescopes that fits your rifle effortlessly.

Best Value Thermal Clip-On

4.9 / 5
4.9/5

Brand

AGM Global Vision

Magnification

1x

Battery

CR123

Weight

24.6 oz

Objective lens

50 mm

Construction

AGM Anaconda is a small thermal imaging clip-on system with a dimension of 8.2 x 2.7 x 3.1 inches that can be attached easily on up to 8x magnification scopes. It allows you to quickly convert day optics into thermal imaging optics without any special skills. 

User-friendly Features

This best clip on thermal scope is a reliable scope that can be mounted easily in front of your daylight scope with no re-zeroing. Multiple color palettes, wireless remote control access, and waterproof construction make you tension free in the hunting field. Also, a three-year warranty is a great boon to the scope. 

Advanced technology

Nowadays all the thermal scopes are upgraded with modern technologies based on your needs. Likewise, AGM is also featured with an inbuilt video recording which gives you hilarious enjoyment in the field. It does not only records video and also offers live video streaming.

Using AGM Anaconda for your night hunting, you’ll be able to shoot your real-time video by connecting it to the external Wi-fi module. So you can have fun in the field with your family members by watching it live. You can also share it on social media. 

Battery Life

The battery life of AGM Anaconda makes you seal the deal. It offers 5 hours of continuous operation that is great enough for most excursions. 

If you’re going to spend a long time in the field (for eg, multiple days and nights), then it provides an alternative option for you. It offers an external 5V battery pack for you to purchase. This pack will boost up the battery life for up to 44 hours. So you can stay in the field as long as you wish. 

Additional accessories

AGM Anaconda 1x50mm Medium Range Clip-on thermal scope also comes with some accessories needed for you. It includes a USB cable, wrist strap, lens tissue along a manual to help you operate the scope.

Pros

Cons

Overall, AGM Anaconda 1x50mm Medium Range Clip-on thermal scope is relatively simple and easy to use. It is the best partner for medium range and can be used by anyone, a professional hunter or a novice.

3. ATN ThOR 4, 384×288 Clip-On Thermal Scope

ATN ThOR 4 is the best cheap clip-on thermal scope compared to the top 2 models. It comes with more innovative features at an affordable price.  ATN ThOR 4 series comprises of two models; ATN ThOR 4, 384×288 thermal scope and ATN ThOR 4 640 Thermal Scope. Both the models have similar features with a small variation in thermal resolution. 

Best Thermal Technology

4.7 / 5
4.7/5

Brand

ATN

Magnification

7-28x

Battery

Li-Ion

Weight

30.4 oz

Objective lens

75 mm

Construction

ATN ThOR 4 thermal scope has a rugged and impressive construction with ergonomic controls for easy operation. It is relatively lightweight and very simple to mount on the rifle. The scope has a complete matte finish and nitrogen purged that resists water, fog, and other external elements.  

IV Generation Technology

ATN Thor 4 is equipped with an ultra-sensitive next-generation sensor and Obsidian dual-core processor that provides high-resolution images even in total darkness. The sensor has higher sensitivity and can capture even small objects very clearly at the longest range. And so it is said to be a perfect riflescope for long-range shooting.

Specialty

The most promising feature in ATN Thor 4 is the Ballistic calculator. Most of us hate calculations, including me so it is very difficult for me to get an accurate answer in any sort of calculation. 

To avoid this problem, ATN Thor 4 clip-on thermal scope has an inbuilt ballistic calculator. It measures and gives accurate data of the temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure, incline angle, and also the profiles of multiple weapons. These calculations help you to get a perfect shot all the time.

Dual Streaming 

Another interesting feature in ATN Thor 4 clip-on thermal scope is the dual streaming option. But to activate this feature you have to download the Obsidian app. Through this app, you can record your hunting and stream video live on your phone simultaneously. It is compatible with any iOS and Android smartphones or tablets. You can also adjust the settings of the clip-on thermal scope directly from the mobile.

Other Choices of ATN ThOR 4

The ATN Thor 4 384×288 series comes in four different models with a little change in magnification. They are; 

  • 1.25-5x  –  Target Detection – 750 m, Target Recognition – 335 m, Target Identification – 205 m
  • 2-8x       –  Target Detection – 1050 m, Target Recognition – 480 m, Target Identification – 300 m
  • 4.5-18x –  Target Detection – 1800 m, Target Recognition – 720 m, Target Identification – 430 m
  • 7-28x    –  Target Detection – 3000 m, Target Recognition – 1320 m, Target Identification – 720 m

All the other features are similar in the four models. Based on the distance you hunt you can choose the lens option.

Pros

Cons

ATN Thor 4 384×288 Clip-On Thermal scope is mostly preferred by all hunters for its versatility and effortless function. It is most suitable for long range shooting.

4. Bering BEAST-C 336 Clip-On Attachment

Bering BEAST-C 336 Clip-On Attachment is one of the best clip-on thermal scopes for the money available on the market. 

It will provide the excellent performance that you expect from the premium scopes, and it will be worthable for the price you spent on this.

Best Thermal Clip-on for the Money

4.6 / 5
4.6/5

Brand

Bering Optics

Magnification

1x

Battery

CR123

Weight

19.9 oz

Objective lens

50 mm

Resolution

It comes with the FLIR TAU 2 Core thermal detector with a resolution of 336 x 256 pixels that allows you to identify the targets accurately by detecting the temperature variations. This high-resolution thermal clip-on system provides the better thermal images with sharp details of the targets. 

Display & Lens

This Bering BEAST clip-on system contains the AMOLED display with 800 x 600 pixels resolution that provides better quality images in any condition. The combination of high-resolution sensor and high-quality display provides accurate visibility of the targets. 

The <50mK thermal sensitivity of the thermal sensor allows it to detect the targets up to 1000 m distance. Thus, you can use this thermal clip-on scope for hunting or shooting from short to medium range distance. It comes with an objective lens of 50mm that allows you to view the targets clearly from a long-range distance. 

Magnification & FOV

The 1x fixed magnification range of this clip-on system provides an accurate view of the target that is closer to you. The 6.5 x 5.0 degrees field of view with this large objective lens allows you to view the target with surrounding information. This clip-on thermal scope allows you to detect the large sized targets from 5 m to infinity distance range. 

Construction

It is constructed with the military grade durable material to ensure reliable performance on the field, and it weighs less, so it won’t add more weight to your rifle, and you can easily carry this. It is powered by the rechargeable CR123 batteries that provide 4 hours of continuous operation.

Pros

Cons

Bering BEAST-C 336 Clip-On Attachment will be the perfect partner for your daytime optic. It can bear up any weather conditions and give you extraordinary performance in the field.

5. Pulsar Core RXQ30V Clip-On Thermal Scope

Pulsar Core RXQ30V Thermal Scope is an upgraded version in 2019. It is one of the cheap clip on thermal scopes compared to other models. This thermal scope provides excellent performance and can be used for long-range targets. It is a perfect fitting for any shooter’s powerful weapon.

Best for Range Shooting

4.5 / 5
4.5/5

Brand

Pulsar

Magnification

1.6 - 6.4x

Battery

CR123A

Weight

17.6 oz

Objective lens

22 mm

Specialty

The Pulsar Core RXQ30V has a unique feature that makes it stand alone from all the brands. The green tint is a special feature in this clip-on thermal scope that detects heat signatures. This reduces eye fatigue and keeps it relaxed. So you can use it for a long time. 

Picture IN Picture Technology

The Picture In Picture (PIP)mode featured in this scope gives a clear, wide view of your target and the field. In addition, it possesses another 3 modes for rocks, forests, and identification. These modes help you find prey in any environment. Not only a single prey, it helps in quick multiple hog shooting.

Freeze Zeroing Technology

Pulsar Core RXQ30V is equipped with a 38 x 288 core processor having 50 Hz refresh rates. This frame rate provides a clear and smooth view of a fast-moving target. 

The built-in Freeze Zeroing technology is another interesting feature in this core RXQ30V thermal scope. This feature lets your scope to get zeroed with a single shot.

Pros

Cons

Pulsar Core RXQ30V Clip-On Thermal Scope is an outstanding thermal scope that shows unique heat signatures in sapphire (green) tint.  Also, the innovative features of this scope make it user-friendly and are the best clip on thermal scope for hunting. 

6. ATN TICO LT 320 Clip-On Thermal Scope

ATN TICO LT 320 Clip-On Thermal Scope is a redesigned model of TICO LT. It is one of the affordable clip-on thermal scopes available on the market. 

If you’re a beginner and don’t want to spend more, then this is the perfect clip-on thermal scope that provides a better experience. It will perfectly fit on your daytime optic and makes it a better thermal optic. The combination of daytime optic and clip-on systems provides high-quality thermal images with enough details.

Best Traditional Thermal Clip-on

4.5 / 5
4.5/5

Brand

ATN

Magnification

2-4x

Battery

Li-ion

Weight

19.9 oz

Objective lens

35 mm

Resolution

The thermal sensor present in this thermal clip-on scope has a resolution of 320×240 pixels that allows you to identify the targets by detecting the heat energy. 

Thus, it is an ideal clip-on thermal scope for hunting, tactical operations, surveillance, and other outdoor activities. When it comes to looking for the clip-on thermal scope for coyote hunting, then this will be a perfect choice. 

Lens

It comes with a large objective lens of 50mm that provides a better view of the target with the surrounding information. The large objective lens supports a wider field of view so you can view the background of the hunting field and also be aware of the dangerous animals. 

You can mount this clip-on optic to any scope and turns it into a thermal optic. It comes with the ATN Obsidian LT Core that provides high-quality images and improves the accuracy. The 60 Hz refresh rate of this optic improves the quality and provides crisp and clear images of the target. 

Display & Other Features

The color palettes present in this scope allow you to change the brightness and contrast level based on the lighting condition of the surrounding environment. It is designed with a quality display with a resolution of 1280×960 pixels that provides a crystal clear view of the target. 

The battery life of this clip-on thermal scope is better than the other models since it has 10 hours of battery and allows you to work for an extended period of time. The features present in this scope make it ideal for hunting or shooting.

Pros

Cons

Take this ATN TICO LT 320 Clip-On Thermal Scope with you on your hunting adventures and bring home the memories of your hunting game. It is versatile and can be used for hunting, law enforcement, rescue operations, etc.

Comparison of Best Clip-on Thermal Scopes

Products AGM Global Vision Anaconda Micro Compact AGM Global Vision Anaconda ATN ThOR 4 Bering Optics Pulsar Core RXQ30V ATN TICO
Magnification 1x 1x 7-28x 1x 1.6 - 6.4x 2-4x
Objective Lens 50 mm 50 mm 75 mm 50 mm 22 mm 50 mm
Display 1024x768 OLED 800x600 pixels 1280x720 HD AMOLED of 800 x 600 pixels 640x480 pixels 1280x960 HD Micro-Display
Resolution 384x288 pixels 384x288 pixels 348x288 pixels 336 x 256 pixels 384x288 pixels 320x240 pixels
Field of View 7.4 x 5.6 14.8 - 11.8 degrees 3 degrees 6.5 x 5.0 degrees 14 degrees 4.5 - 3 degrees
Detection Range - - 3000 m 1000 m 985 yds 1700
Refresh Rate 50 Hz 60 Hz 60 Hz 30 Hz 50Hz 60 Hz
Temperature Range -40C to +70C -40 to -50 celsius -28°C to 48°C -40 to -50 celsius -25 - 50 Celsius -40° C – 50° C
Battery CR123 CR123 Li-Ion CR123 CR123A Lithium
Learn more Buy Now Buy Now Buy Now Buy Now Buy Now Buy Now

Benefits of using Thermal Clip-on scope

Before investing in any thermal scopes, first, you have to check out the benefits you get when using that scope. The clip on thermal scope is a trump card for your rifle and has many advantages. Let’s get into;

Easy to mount

The clip-on is designed with a clip attachment that is quite easy and quick to load or remove from the rifle. It just takes a few seconds to attach the clip-on.

Convenience

Generally, outdoor enthusiasts stay in the wild for multiple days. We can’t predict the day of returning. So hunters dump a lot of things into their bags. So they always prefer lightweight gears which will not be a burden for them to carry. Clip-on thermal scopes are extremely lightweight and clip easily to any of your favorite rifles. It will not add much weight to your rifle. 

No change of Zero 

In clip-on thermal scopes, you need not want to re-zero the day scope once mounted onto your rifle while hunting. Because it can keep the zero of your day scope itself. Nowadays most of the clip-on thermal scopes are designed in this way. 

Dual-purpose handling

Clip-on thermal scope acts as a monocular while hunting. Using this scope, you don’t have to worry about manipulating your rifle and monocular at the same time to see or track your target. Instead of manipulating this tool you can relax and focus on your goal. Hence, this dual feature makes thermal imaging technology (Wiki)versatile.

Safety

Clip-on thermal scopes provide extra protection for the hunter in the field. The wilderness contains fearsome elements like fog, darkness, unknown terrain, etc.  Thermal scopes protect you from these critical elements by providing consistent and quality night vision while hunting.

Important Factors To Consider While Buying

Before investing in the clip-on thermal scope, there are few important points to keep in mind while picking the best clip on thermal scope for your rifle. 

Compatibility

Before getting a thermal scope add on, make sure whether the clip-on optic is suitable for your day scope. Size doesn’t matter, clip-on thermal scopes are compatible with a wide range of day scope lens sizes.

The one important thing you have to consider is the magnification. Manufacturers of clip-on scopes recommend using clip-on with minimum and maximum zoom of the day scope.

Capacity

The next prominent thing you have to look for is the thermal capability which means the resolution factor, zooming range, target detection, etc. 

  • Resolution

The minimum resolution of 384×288 for a clip-on thermal scope enables you to detect animals around 500 yards. The image quality here is pretty good.

If you’re looking for high-quality images then 640×480 resolution thermal clip-on scope is the right choice. It allows you to focus the target as far as 1000 yards and the image quality is also extraordinary. 

  • Objective Lens: 

Clip-on thermal scopes vary in their lens sizes. It is available in three forms as 50mm, 75mm, and 100mm. But before purchasing, decide your range of shooting first.

A 50mm lens is great for short-range and mid-range hunting. While, the 75mm and 100 mm lens is a perfect choice for long-range shooters.

  • Digital Zoom: 

Most clip-on thermal scope offers up to 4x zoom, while expensive models can be up to 12x. This can be of two types; digital zoom only or a combination of optical and digital zoom.

The latter is good at giving quality images without blurring if you zoom-in.

  • Refresh Rate:

Refresh rates are also available in three forms; 30Hz, 50Hz, 60Hz. The modern thermal scopes come with 60Hz refresh rates which helps you track the moving animal easily and quickly. But the lower 30 Hz refresh rate may lag when focusing on a moving animal. 

So, if you want to track the fastest moving animal, then consider the clamp on thermal scopes having high refresh rates. 

Weight

A compact clip-on thermal scope is stable and will not make your rifle heavy. The lightweight design makes portability easier. So you’ll not feel overload when using lightweight clip-on thermal scopes. 

Display

The bright and crisp display is very important for easy detection and tracking of animals. I recommend a clip-on with at least 640×480 display resolution for a clear view of the target. For a better view, you can go with an HD display having a high resolution of 800 × 600, 1024×768, or even more.

Along with the display, also check whether you can change the color palettes of the images and adjust the brightness of the display. 

Battery Life

Usually, most of the clip-on thermal scopes offer two CR123 types of batteries. It provides continuous operation for about 4-5 hours. If you need extra battery life, then you can get a battery pack separately. 

Video Output

Unlike other thermal scopes, most of the clip-on thermal scopes are not featured with video recording and streaming. So they possess an alternative method to record video with a digital video recorder. 

If you want to capture footage of your hunting adventure, then check out whether your clip-on thermal scope has a video recording option. 

Waterproof

I always recommend waterproof clip-on thermal scopes. As a hunter, you have to face many challenges in the wild such as the rain, snow, wind, etc. So make sure your scope is waterproof, fog-proof, and scratch-resistant. You need not want to bother about any climatic changes, you can move ahead with your clip-on thermal scope. 

The final thing you have to consider is the use of day scope and thermal scope simultaneously. This is explained in the benefits section above. 

FAQ

Does clip-on thermal scope work during the day?

Yes, the clip-on thermal scopes work during the daytime and also can be used in all lighting conditions since they don’t require available light. Unlike the normal scopes and night vision scopes, the clip-on thermal scope works by detecting the temperature variations of the objects. With this, you can easily identify the targets since the animals or humans have high temperatures than the surrounding environment.

How Does the Clip-on Thermal Scope Work?

Basically, the clip-on thermal scopes work using the thermal technology that allows you to view the targets during both day and night. The clip-on system observes the heat energy that is produced from the objects, and that is converted into thermal images in all lighting conditions. The thermal technology doesn’t depend on the available light, so you can see the objects without any light source.

Is clip-on Thermal Scope ideal for Hunters?

The answer is yes. The clip-on thermal scope is preferred by many professional hunters for a better experience. Hunting with a clip-on system allows you to easily identify your targets and improves your hunting.

Final Words

Clip-on thermal scopes are the best choice when compared to clip-on night vision scopes. Most of the hunters prefer clip on thermal scopes as it has a dual purpose; a monocular and standalone thermal scope. 

Find your next target on the hunt with Clip-On Thermal Scopes. Whether you’re hunting hogs or deer, doesn’t matter, but it is always good to have a best clip on thermal scope that is quick to set and ready to go whenever you need it most. 

Hope so my review will be helpful for you to invest in the Best Clip-on Thermal Scope. Enjoy your day and night hunting game with clip-on thermal scopes.

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