Scanner ?

Posted by: Pro_hunt

Scanner ? - 01/18/20 12:53 PM

Looking to get a thermal scanner. Mostly hunt open terrain but have areas where I can hunt heavily wooded areas along a river also. I will need to be able to identify targets for sure.


The scanners I am considering based on my budget is the Axiom30 Key. Was quoted $1700 for it.
The Helion XQ38. Quoted $2600.
FLIR's Scout III 640. Found it for $2200.

What is your opinion /experience with any of these?
How far can a person realistically be able to identify animals?
Is there a better option in my price range? The $2600 is the top of my price range for sure and is stretching it a little as is.
If anyone knows where a person can get better pricing that would be great as well.

Thanks for any help!
Posted by: Kirsch

Re: Scanner ? - 01/18/20 01:31 PM

I will add 2 more scanners to the mix. The two Hogster-R models from Bering Optics. They are small enough to function as a scanner but can also be used as a thermal scope. They are actually smaller than the Helion XQ38.

The issue you will encounter with the two models you selected is they are designed with higher base mag and smaller Field Of View. This works OK for a hog hunter for instance who wants to drive to a spot, look at a field from a long way away, and then when they see a hog or hogs make a stalk. Most coyote hunters who walk to a stand and then call and scan continuously are looking for a scanner with a wide FOV as coyotes could approach from many angles. How wide? It depends on terrain and preference. Some coyote hunters like 1x scanners with 24+ degree fields of view, while I personally like a 1.4x to 2.x for the open country I call.

I have included a table with the 2 scanners you mentioned and the Bering Optics. I put MAP pricing down for all units because the prices you quoted on the Axion and Helion were lower than any MAP pricing. If you are using it as a coyote scanner and you have some areas with wooded areas, I would be looking for more FOV than the Key. Just my .02. I would probably recommend the Hogster-R 25mm just based on what you have described in your description. Most of these units will be similar where you will start seeing coyotes in about the 600-900 yard range, and be able to ID them around 200-300. I am not sure why the core in the Hogster does so well in high humidity, but that is also a plus of the Hogsters.

Posted by: Pro_hunt

Re: Scanner ? - 01/18/20 02:16 PM

Thank you and it does give me more to consider.

I also added the Flir ScoutIII 640 to the mix. How does that compare to the others?
Posted by: Kirsch

Re: Scanner ? - 01/18/20 02:31 PM

Some people like them. I had one and sold it. I wasnít impressed by the image or detection but it worked. If thinking Flir, I would look at the Scion OTM 266. I havenít used it but some are saying it is a nice scanner.
Posted by: BJJ223

Re: Scanner ? - 01/18/20 05:00 PM

The OTM blows the Scout III out of the water. About the same price too.

For me, the OTM266 is the first decent FLIR I have owned. All the rest have sucked (HS-324, M24, LS64, LS-XR).

I can finally say I have a decent tool to scan with. I am completely happy with this one.
Posted by: Pro_hunt

Re: Scanner ? - 01/18/20 06:02 PM

Looks like the scout is out. I will check the others out. Thanks for the help!
Posted by: BJJ223

Re: Scanner ? - 01/18/20 07:08 PM

Koreyís Hogsters look nice too. Your lucky to be looking now. Things are 1/2 the price of what they were 5 years ago. My biggest piece of advice - spend the extra money to get what you want. You will regret it if you donít.

Itís just money you would waste on the mortgage or retirement.
Posted by: ohioyotehntr

Re: Scanner ? - 01/19/20 11:25 AM

I have a Axion Key xm30 and really like it. Well worth the money. No extra options that you really donít need in a scanner.
Personally I would stay away from a Flir simply because of their latest release of discontinuing civilian model products
Posted by: varminter .223

Re: Scanner ? - 01/19/20 01:38 PM

Hogster r 35mm for scanning and digital nv for shooting would work too. I say 35mm because after about four hunts you will slap the hogster on your rifle and order a thermal handheld lol. Then you'd be in bidness!
Posted by: BJJ223

Re: Scanner ? - 01/19/20 04:43 PM

FLIR will still support the Scion series products
Posted by: Bill Kingore

Re: Scanner ? - 01/19/20 05:52 PM

I am thinking og the hogster 35mm too