L3 Unfilmed vs Photonis Echo

GBMaryland

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I’ve noticed with my own pictures that sometimes I have a really hard time getting a good picture depending on the amount of light

One of the really difficult ones with with the thin filmed Elbit... The EBI in the halo are kind of crappy on that one and it just wouldn’t cleanly focus an image. Plus it was unusually bright, which really played games with the camera

I have a similar issue with the astronomy spec’ed L3 that I have.. But it’s such a cleaner tube that it definitely come through well

And of course the photonis echo is such a high spec tube that it also comes through really clean but just a little bit darker

I have yet to see it unfilmed tube aside from that really old M890 that didn’t have a clean image
 

GBMaryland

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The problem with the pictures above is they were all taken at different times… However you do get a pretty good idea of how good each tube actually looks visually when you try to make the picture larger… They were all taken from the same camera and generally have the same exposure

With the exception of the Elbit, they all look substantially better with the naked eye.

The Elbit was underwelming with it's largish halo and large EBI
 
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GBMaryland

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Very dark, Echo, 36:1:

F69B8CC9-7B5D-4F2D-A5E8-39EA1133F37C.jpeg39226C25-EA8B-4902-882C-C7FA24F303BC.jpeg

L3,unfilmed, 35:1,

E94FD712-5DF7-46C3-B5A1-4D2A48D2BA0D.jpeg24C2390C-3C6B-4DFF-A5A2-63AC5B26ADEC.jpeg

taken at the same time in the same lighting conditions

The echo does tend to be a little bit darker.

All pictures in this series were taken using instant shutter, no extended exposure time
 

cajer

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Wow that looks allot more favorable to the photonis than I expected. I'm definatley gonna pick up that intens tube now! I hope they have the 4g+ version also not only the 4g as they are getting it from a supplier and the supplier isn't giving them the option to hand pick a tube.
 

GBMaryland

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Remember that that’s an echo tube. And a very high specked one to begin with.

Intens tubes are much more expensive. To the point where it may not pay not to purchase an L3 unfilmed.

A very high end echo two is the sweet spot financially.

A very high spec’d Intens tube is a really good tube that is on par with the majority of L3 unfilmed tubes.

there is no comparing a high signal to noise ratio L3 tube, with a low EBI, and a low halo, and a great luminous gain / Photocathode response - But you pay a lot of money for those.
 

cleric

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For my uses as purely rec the echo doesn’t look like a bad unit...

I don’t know what to do
 

Lowdown3

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I've been a fan of the Echo tubes for years and have had great luck with them down in the Georgia swamps far away from any ambient light sources.

And the big plus right now is they are available, which means no 8-24 week lead time like a lot of NV is running!
 

GBMaryland

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Not to mention the echo tubes are very cost-effective...

The important thing is to make sure that they have a very high signal to noise ratio
 

GBMaryland

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For my uses as purely rec the echo doesn’t look like a bad unit...

I don’t know what to do
Get a get an echo and be happy… Reach out to the surgeon shooter and ask him to get you one with a decent signal to noise ratio

or UNV...
 

WhereNow&How

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The Elbeit should perform better? is it due to its high ebi?
Higher EBI is usually undesirable because in lower light situations (really dark) you get a lot more scintillation (AKA noise, snow, sparkles) which makes it hard to recognize objects for what they are. Kinda like bad reception on your old 1960's & 70's TV with the rabbit ears that aren't receiving good signal.

However, decent ambient light or an illuminator pretty much takes EBI out of the equation.

I also forgot to add that the Sure Shot NV SNB filter will make a high EBI tube perform exceptionally better IMHO in darker environments. Does away with the majority of Scintillation allowing for a much cleaner/clearer picture. Best dam filter to hit the market I have seen, point blank period.
 
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WhereNow&How

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I am learning about all of this but those L3 images look to be the best to my eyes.
Good bit to learn about NV & Thermal, but there is plenty of great information on this site to learn plus some really talented people here as well. So dig in for the ride.

You can have good and bad images with any of the tube manufacturers. Depends on each units actual measured specs and the cleanliness or not of the screen cosmetics. KInda like picking a wife. Some good some not so good. :LOL:
 
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NateSavannah

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Remember that that’s an echo tube. And a very high specked one to begin with.

Intens tubes are much more expensive. To the point where it may not pay not to purchase an L3 unfilmed.

A very high end echo two is the sweet spot financially.

A very high spec’d Intens tube is a really good tube that is on par with the majority of L3 unfilmed tubes.

there is no comparing a high signal to noise ratio L3 tube, with a low EBI, and a low halo, and a great luminous gain / Photocathode response - But you pay a lot of money for those.
"there is no comparing a high signal to noise ratio L3 tube, with a low EBI, and a low halo, and a great luminous gain / Photocathode response - But you pay a lot of money for those." in your opinion what numbers would you consider high in a current L3 unfilmed tube?
 

Nik H

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    Good bit to learn about NV & Thermal, but there is plenty of great information on this site to learn plus some really talented people here as well. So dig in for the ride.

    You can have good and bad images with any of the tube manufacturers. Depends on each units actual measured specs and the cleanliness or not of the screen cosmetics. KInda like picking a wife. Some good some not so good. :LOL:
    I have read a lot and will continue to do so. Have a million questions written down...LOL
     
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    GBMaryland

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    L3?

    EBI < .5
    Halo < .5
    PCR > 2400
    LG > 66000
    SN > 35
    CR LP/mm => 72


    That’s a general be a very good tube

    If you’re looking for photography or certain highlight conditions, or astronomy, the Intens 4G / milspec tubes are great.

    If you can get one with a FOM > 2500... they tend to fall in the 30:1 SN range, but with a better than 72LP/mm. (So they are very clean...)
     
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    NateSavannah

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    L3?

    EBI < .5
    Halo < .5
    PCR > 2400
    LG > 66000
    SN > 35
    CR LP/mm => 72


    That’s a general be a very good tube

    If you’re looking for photography or certain highlight conditions, or astronomy, the Intens 4G / milspec tubes are great.

    If you can get one with a FOM > 2500... they tend to fall in the 30:1 SN range, but with a better than 72LP/mm. (So they are very clean...)
    Honestly Ive got 2 really good l3 tubes. And theres alot of people on the interwebs who talk about "real good l3 unfilmed tubes" but dont specifically state what the specs are of what they think a really good tube is. I just like to know what I have vs whats considered real good.
     

    GBMaryland

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    Well part of the problem is is that people are always saying stuff like really high signal to noise ratio, and low EBI....

    The problem is is that every tube is like a different kid, and one may end up being your favorite but it’s because of the combination of all these different factors.

    Without a doubt you want a low EBI, which should be significantly under one.

    With signal to noise ratio you’re really wanting to be 35 or higher...

    The photocathode response needs to be at least 2200 and it would be better if it was 2400.

    Halo really should be .5 to .7 max.

    And you want the center resolution on the tube to be 72 or better...

    Generally the luminance gain should be at least 65,000 and better than 17,000 in the other category.

    What makes a commercial tube a fallout tube has a lot of us speculating… Most likely it’s because of slightly dark spots that seem to exist in many of the 2000 UA and 2200 UA tubes.

    And when I say dark spots I mean still able to be seen through spots that do exist in zones two and three.

    When considering an L3 tube you have to look at all of that stuff as the bigger picture. I’ve even had an L3 filmed tube that had a 19 signal to noise ratio and was just a beautiful tube to look through...
     

    VoinSaigon

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    Higher EBI is usually undesirable because in lower light situations (really dark) you get a lot more scintillation (AKA noise, snow, sparkles) which makes it hard to recognize objects for what they are. Kinda like bad reception on your old 1960's & 70's TV with the rabbit ears that aren't receiving good signal.

    However, decent ambient light or an illuminator pretty much takes EBI out of the equation.
    I'm aware of that, I heard that elbeit thin film have amazing FOM like 35SNR and 68-72 Res but shit EBI like 2 and more. I was wondering was that making it look inferior
     

    Nik H

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    A stupid question but does all of this discussion apply to all NV equipment. Meaning the tube technology used in a PVS 14 type is the same technology that the tubes used in a PVS 27 or 30?
     

    WhereNow&How

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    A stupid question but does all of this discussion apply to all NV equipment. Meaning the tube technology used in a PVS 14 type is the same technology that the tubes used in a PVS 27 or 30?
    Pretty much the same on the tube. However, when inserted into PVS 27 and 30 they are installed to withstand recoil, whereas in a PVS 14 they really are not.
     

    VoinSaigon

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    Remember that that’s an echo tube. And a very high specked one to begin with.

    Intens tubes are much more expensive. To the point where it may not pay not to purchase an L3 unfilmed.

    A very high end echo two is the sweet spot financially.

    A very high spec’d Intens tube is a really good tube that is on par with the majority of L3 unfilmed tubes.

    there is no comparing a high signal to noise ratio L3 tube, with a low EBI, and a low halo, and a great luminous gain / Photocathode response - But you pay a lot of money for those.
    Your Echo looks as good as a thinfilm is that a ECHO plus ? how Many FOM it has?
     
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    GBMaryland

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    Your Echo looks as good as a thinfilm is that a ECHO plus ? how Many FOM it has?
    36:1 SN

    Better than average echo tube....

    The rest of the specs fall in more or less what I said for the L3... Photocathode sensitivity and luminous game being lower on the echo
     

    Marcus85

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    Why are Photonis 4G tubes costing more than L3 unfilmed. I thought they were considered lesser than L3.
     

    GBMaryland

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    The HP+ is OK, but I'm not sure the EBI will work for you in extreme low light. It's all dependant on IF you get an Elbit that has an EBI under 1.

    That would be the defining characteristic for me. If the Elbit halo is under 1 and the EBI is under 1... then what you say is true.

    Otherwise, a VERY high spec echo is gonna be the clear image winner... and if it's that dark, you're using an illuminator.

    Only the L3 is the clear winner in very dark environments...
     

    Will-1

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    The HP+ is OK, but I'm not sure the EBI will work for you in extreme low light. It's all dependant on IF you get an Elbit that has an EBI under 1.

    That would be the defining characteristic for me. If the Elbit halo is under 1 and the EBI is under 1... then what you say is true.

    Otherwise, a VERY high spec echo is gonna be the clear image winner... and if it's that dark, you're using an illuminator.

    Only the L3 is the clear winner in very dark environments...
    The other thing that should be mentioned is that the Echo will be noticeably darker than Gen 3 even with higher specs and a better image. I really liked the Echo but I didn't care for how much darker it was than Gen 3.
     

    GBMaryland

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    Yep. They are darker. The image quality (on high SN ECHOs) is great. The INTENS / 4G / MILSPEC is another story. They are much more comparable to US tubes.
     

    Will-1

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    Yep. They are darker. The image quality (on high SN ECHOs) is great. The INTENS / 4G / MILSPEC is another story. They are much more comparable to US tubes.
    I gotta try one of these one of these days. It's just for the money I don't see myself buying one versus a high spec filmless WP.
     

    GBMaryland

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    Last one I had was a 2450 FOM echo... so youre getting the tube for ~2200, then you need a housing... so thats what, $600?... nitrogen purging, and assembly... minimum of $3000.00?

    That’s assuming the distributor does an up charge you for a better spec tube...
     

    RyanScott

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    NVI does select Echos in a 14 for like 2850.

    TNVC doesn’t charge for hand select on filmless you just get in line.
     
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    GBMaryland

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    Thats pretty friggen great!

    As long as you get a high SN Echo.., the L3 is nit so much better that its worth the extra cash.

    Likewise, if you could get an Elbit for that price with a low EBI, Halo, 72lp/mm center... thatd be a great tube too,

    I’d only go out and get an L3 if money is no object and you’re really doing something that absolutely will never see an illuminator.

    Those are some great prices
     

    Will-1

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    The higher specs L3 WP tubes in PVS-14s are around $4800.... whereas an ECHO is around $3300ish
    I was referring to the Intens. Aren't those selling for as much as a high spec filmless WP? Personally, at the same cost or near it, I can't see myself passing on a filmless for an Intens.

    I agree with Eliteuas, $3,300 is pretty high for a -14 with an Echo compared to JRH Enterprises and NV Inc.
     

    GBMaryland

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    Heh. As long as it's apples to apples. If center resolution isn't at least 68 lp/mm and the SN isn't 35>1... Then it's not as good a deal as buying, say, a filmed L3.

    If you guys are getting Echos that have high center resolutions and great signal to noise ratios for $2200.00... that's fantastic!
     

    Choid

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    So, question on high vs low light. I realize that if I hit something with an Atilla at 100 yards, the l3 will be worse than the Photonis, but what about at longer distances? Is the laser illum still a detriment to the L3 at 500 yards, at 1000? Asking about clip ons use too.
     
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    GBMaryland

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    It seems that 4G+ tubes are just binned 4g tubes with a minimum of 2300 FOM.

    If that’s the case, the I’ve previously owned a 4G+.

    What was the case with that tube was that it had an 81lp/mm Center Resolution. Which translates to a significantly higher highlight resolution (than an L3 unfilmed at 35-45).

    Of course, the 4G+ doesn’t compare to an ICT Labs Gen3 unfilmed in highlight... but they are also not almost $6k.
     

    Frog05

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    So, question on high vs low light. I realize that if I hit something with an Atilla at 100 yards, the l3 will be worse than the Photonis, but what about at longer distances? Is the laser illum still a detriment to the L3 at 500 yards, at 1000? Asking about clip ons use too.
    Stand by. We will find out soon. 😉
     
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