Guide TD210 Thermal Scope – good enough for mammalwatching???

Hello Mammal Pals!
We’re going to Australia in October / November, for a combined family reunion & wildlife holiday. I’ve been thinking about getting a thermal scope for nocturnal spotting but having spent all my money on The Big Holiday, the budget is tight…
NHBS (in the UK) have an option that I could afford – Guide TD210 Thermal Imaging Monocular – £599.95

Good points for me are that it connects to a mobile phone or tablet for an external screen – I wear glasses for distance but have to take them off for close vision, and putting them on/off when trying to find beasties is really annoying so using an external screen so I don’t have to do this would really help. It also has a built-in laser for locating sightings, so no taping a laser to the scope. And it uses a 18650 battery, so easy to change in the field and interchangeable with my Fenix torch.

Main Specs:
Thermal Sensor: 256×192 12µm <50mK NETD
Field of View: 17.5°×13.1°
400-1000m detection range (400m human or animal, 1000m vehicle)
Display: 1280×960 LCOS Colour

Jurek’s really helpful review highlights field of view and viewer resolution as desired qualities – BUT as a novice to this stuff I’m struggling to understand whether these specs are any good for our mammalwatching purposes… Obviously this is a lower-cost bit of kit so I know not to expect top-of-the-range specs. Is this scope good enough for finding for gliders & possums in trees in Oz, or would I be wasting my money?

thanks in advance for any insights!


  • Larry Master

    I would like to know the answer as well as I plan to buy a thermal scope for mammal spotting.

  • Lennartv

    I think the best thing you could do is just test it out. The image quality and refresh rate are not that high with this device so I would not expect to be able to identify much animals with the thermal alone. However if you really want to be able to do that you will need to spend much much more so that’s probably not what you are after. Personally I only use the thermal to pick up stuff to help me find it with the torch.

    25hz refresh rate is quite low though so I don’t know how much that would hinder your scanning in the field. I have 50hz myself. The rest of the specs look fine to me. If the shop allows you to, you could just order it and send it back and test it out in the mean time on house cats and hamsters (that sort of stuff), then you’ll quickly know if it has what you are looking for.

    • Steph

      thank you! – yes, my intention is the same i.e. using the thermal to scan for mammals to aid finding them with the torch. I should have explained that better in the post. As it sounds like it might be ok (with a ?? on refresh rate) I think I will do what you suggest, and order one to test out at home & return if no good. Maybe I will finally find the local water voles!

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