Binoculars and Night Vision Goggles for Surveillance


This article provides an overview of binoculars and night vision goggles, sometimes abbreviated NVG, that private investigators use for surveillance purposes.

What are Binoculars?

Once known as field glasses or lorgnettes, binoculars are a pair of identical or mirror-symmetrical telescopes. The telescopes are mounted side-by-side and aligned to point accurately in the same direction. This allows the viewer to use both eyes (binocular vision) to view distant objects.

How Are They Used?

Most binoculars are to be held using both hands. The device is then held close to the eyes and positioned so both eyes can see clearly without any outside interference or light. The shapes and sizes vary widely, ranging from opera glasses to large pedestal-mounted military equipment. Many different abbreviations exist for the devices, including glasses, binos, and bins.

Who Uses Binoculars and Night Vision Goggles?

Since binoculars are for recreational use and others are for business. About anyone might need to buy a pair. Sports fans use them to watch sporting events at a distance. Hunters use them to view their prey from afar.

Private investigators, security professionals, and law enforcement use binoculars during surveillance missions and stakeout projects to view subjects and their activity from a distance.

Detectives use them to get an idea of what is going on with and around the subject while remaining at a safe distance away. The devices are standard tools in a private investigator’s surveillance tool kit.

Celestron 71008 SkyMaster 25×70 Binoculars (Black)

This pair is part of Celestron’s Sky Master series of large aperture binoculars. These are perfect for viewing subjects over a long distance during surveillance. Each model has BaK-4 prisms and multi-coated optics for enhanced contrast. These models also meet the unique demands of extended astronomical or terrestrial viewers. This particular model includes the following:

  • 25 times magnification Porto prism binocular
  • A large 70-millimeter objective lens that offers maximum image brightness in both low-light and long-range situations
  • It has an ultra-sharp focus across the field of view
  • The linear Field of View is about 1000 yards)
  • It has multi-coated optics for sharp, clear viewing
  • The exterior has a protective rubber covering that allows a tight grip

These are especially great in low-light conditions. Perfect for surveillance.

High Power Binoculars with built-in DVR

If you’re looking for a high-quality visual amplification tool that you can use for surveillance, I recommend the HD Digital Binocular and DVR. This durable and water-resistant product allows you to view objects clearly at a distance and record what you’re seeing. This can be extremely useful as it will capture everything so you can review it later and even show your client. There is no need to use a separate camera or video equipment.

The product has a 10x25mm objective lens with a 101M/1000M view range, which is suitable for many surveillance missions. The resolution is sharp and clear and features “steady hold technology” to help improve clarity.

Captured video footage is easily stored on a 32GB MicroSD card. It has a USB video output to connect your computer or laptop for easy review.

Binoculars and Night Vision Goggles

night vision goggles

Night vision binoculars (also called night vision goggles), scopes, and weapon sights allow a person to see in a dark environment. Night vision is made possible by combining two approaches, which involve sufficient spectral and acceptable intensity ranges.

Who Needs Binoculars and Night Vision Goggles?

Private investigators and police officers may use binoculars and night vision goggles, scopes, and weapons sights while conducting night-time surveillance investigations to view the activity of their subjects. Many secret relationships and marital infidelity take place at night, so this equipment is critical to catching subjects while they are active.

Using these devices, private investigators and police officers can remain far away at a safe distance and keep a close eye on their subjects.

The goal of using such a device is to see clearly in the dark while others have trouble seeing. The physical device consists of an infrared image intensifier tube in a rigid casing, commonly used by military forces.

How Are Night Vision Goggles Used?

Examples of ways the device can be used include Distance observation, surveillance missions, subject tracking, hiking, camping, cave exploration, commercial and sport fishing, and law enforcement search and rescue.

The night vision goggle is a device with dual eyepieces; the device can utilize either one intensifier tube with the same image sent to both eyes or a separate image intensifier tube for each eye. Other types include monocular night vision devices with only one eyepiece, which may be mounted to firearms as night sights. Note that these are sometimes referred to as infrared binoculars.

Typical Product Features

Following are some of the features that can be found on various devices:

  • Dual-eye diopter adjustment
  • High-resolution intensifiers help improve clarity
  • Central focusing
  • Multi-coated optics
  • Modern ergonomic design for easy use
  • Rubber armor protection improves durability and protects against accidental drops
  • Water and fog-resistant for extreme outdoor use
  • Significant viewing range distance for nighttime surveillance missions
  • Magnification doubler (increases the viewing range), great for viewing subjects at a distance
  • Compact body with a premium rubberized finish for optimum protection and durability
  • Precise Diopter Adjustment
  • Built-in Infrared Illuminators for viewing in complete darkness, helping to keep you out of sight
  • Steel stringer system for added precision and control
  • Objective Lens
  • Ocular Lens

Typical accessories included with the purchase of a device are Batteries, usually lithium, a neck strap, protective storage, and a carrying case.

Want to get a better view? Try a surveillance drone to get an aerial view of the entire area. Also, you’ll find more digital electronics and spy gear in our Spy Gear Store.

Questions about Binoculars and Night Vision

If you have any questions about binoculars and night vision goggles, scopes, or optics, please leave a comment below.

Michael Kissiah is the owner of Brandy Lane Publishing, LLC, which owns and operates a small portfolio of websites, including Michael created more than 20 years ago after working as a private investigator in the state of Florida. Since that time, he has become an expert at how to find information online and has written over 1000 articles on topics related to the investigation industry. In addition, he is the author of the "Private Investigator Licensing Handbook", available at


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.