Thermal imaging is an incredibly powerful technology, whether it’s used to hunt pigs, track escapees from a helicopter, or locate enemy troops on the battlefield. Instantly illuminates warm-blooded creatures, even in the event that they are visually camouflaged and immobile. At the SHOT Show 2023 this week, Holosun unveiled an exciting recent hybrid optic called the Holosun DMS, which integrates a thermal overlay (or digital night vision) over the usual red dot. While it isn’t ready for retail yet, several prototypes are undergoing testing, and we got our hands on each variants on the SHOT Show Range Day.
Holosun DMS Red Dot hybrid optics
The recent Holosun DMS appears to be based on the favored one Holosun AEMS, a compact red dot with a closed emitter and flip-up lens covers. However, on this case, the front cover is opaque, not transparent. When flipped, the optic acts as a standard red dot with adjustable brightness and selectable Holosuna dot or dot reticle.
When the front lens cover is up, you possibly can press the button to activate the DMS secondary optical systemwhich might be displayed in a black window behind a crosshair with a red dot. Since the red dot is independent of the background image, the optics keep the identical zero in any respect times, day and night.
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We checked two Holosun DMS submodels, each with a distinct additional overlay:
- DMS-TH Pro – Thermal optics with different image modes
- DMS-NV Pro – Digital night vision camera (much like Sionyx Aurora Pro) with infrared illuminator
The red dot and secondary thermal or NV optics are independent of one another, so you possibly can turn off the secondary optics throughout the day to avoid wasting battery life. Speaking of batteries, the device is powered by two 18350 lithium batteries that could be charged directly contained in the DMS optics via the built-in USB port on the suitable side of the case.
This USB port also offers the power to stream footage to a secondary screen in real time, so you possibly can connect the DMS to your tablet and use it to watch a static position without getting behind your weapon.
Initial performance experience was good, with a transparent picture and high refresh rate. DMS-NV’s image appeared a bit fuzzy on our morning trek to the range, but that is comprehensible given the intense daylight conditions; it needs to be much easier to see at the hours of darkness conditions it was designed for. The DMS-TH showed body temperature clearly in daylight, with a vivid red dot at the highest.
Holosun hasn’t finalized the designs and features of this optic, but we have been told the DMS-NV needs to be priced under $1,000. That’s impressive considering the AEMS red dot is nearly half that size without additional optics on top. As for the thermal DMS-TH, there might be a typical model for around $1,600 and a better resolution premium model for around $2,300. We will keep you updated as we’ve got more details on availability and we’re already planning a radical review as soon as final production samples can be found from Holosun.