Coyote Video using Sony Camcorder with "Night Shot&quot

Most Sony Camcorders come with “Night Shot” (and newer ones come with “Super Night Shot”). Its certainly not like having a Gen 3 and the range is somewhat lacking, but it lets you record at night and is better than having a black screen.

This is my Sony DCR HC-40 MiniDV Camcorder along with a dual purpose IR/Xenon lamp attached to the hotshoe. The Sony comes with a built in IR light, but to take video outside it needs the extra light from the lamp.

I used to have a Sony Digital8 Camera that had Night Shot just after it came out and the newer night shot isnt as good in my opnion, might just be my model because its smaller than my old Digital8.

I set up the Camera on a mount in basement and put a squirrel out to see what would come by. Every hour when the video would run out I’d go back down and check to see if the bait had been disturbed and rewind the video if it hadnt.

After about 3 rewinds the bait was disturbed so I checked the tape instead of just rewinding it and hitting record again. I had 10 minutes of a Coyote coming along from the right, taking the squirrel and carrying it off frame to the right. Then he came back without the squirrel a few minutes later to look around and then left frame, came back with the squirrel and went deeper into woods. Then he did another quick check of the area before going back to eating. This cut video is after he’s moved the squirrel back in frame but is checking around before going back to it.

Photobucket heavily edits uploaded video so here are some stills at full resolution.

“Super Night Shot” uses a slower framerate and longer exposure to give a better picture with more colour, but rather jerky video… works ok as long as things dont move too fast and I’ll be making another post on that once I get the video cut down enough.


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Yeah…. and I kinda wish I hadnt. BUT I got nearly what I paid for it so its all good.

Might get a Gen 2 down the line, or try for something used.

you sold your gen 3 nait? Dang. I still got mine. Sitting on my bedstand so I can spot the bumps in the night.

quote DragonFlySlayer:

hey Ninja…
Very interesting. Do you shoot the Coyotes? Is this your property or Yard?

That was my yard. I didnt shoot this one, have shot two coyotes in my yard and tried to shoot several hundred in the wild but my actual body count is around 10…

I paid $1500 for my Gen 3 NV. I used a pair of $3500 Gen 3’s at work and there was a BIG difference in resolution and brightness….. Not that my Gen 3 was too shabby.

Check this post for some Gen 1 Night Vision Riflescope Pics.


Gen 1 run from $100 to $300. I found a BIG difference between the cheap and realtivly more expensive Gen 1. ATN and Yukon make good tubes.

Gen 2 is WAY better than Gen 1 but the cheapest I’ve seen is around $700 and the next cheapest was more than $1000.

Gen 3 is better than Gen 2, not but as big a difference as the steo up from Gen 1 to 2. Mine cost me $1500 from NAIT (www.nait.com) and they were the cheapest I found new. Thats also were you can get the Gen 2 for $700.

Above prices are for regular NV, not Night Vision scopes which I wouldnt really recommend because they cost a lot more, you can only use them for hunting and you can get a similar effect by simply mounting a NV monocular behind a regular scope. Gen 1 NV scopes cost around $400+.

James – I tried out the Surefire, it worked, but not as well as with the real NV monoculars and the beam was so tight that it doesnt illuminate much. Sold the Gen 3 and the M1 on eBay a few months back, got my hunting licence so I just go during the day now, plus working nights doesnt give me much time for Night Hunting.

As far as I know Sony is the only company to make 0 lux IR camera’s. The others were just low light .01 lux etc. But I might be wrong.

Hell – It adjusts stuff like exposure and frame rate etc, but its all automatic on my cam.

YN have you used the Surefire M1 with the nightshot? I’m guessing it works better than the add on light?


VERY insteresting YN I just bought a JVC GZ-MG155 and have 30 days to check it out…I have the old with Night Shot but it uses tapes and has given me fits trying to get it transferred to the computer…this JVC doesn’t have night shot that I am aware of h-m-m-m-m going to post and see what you guys have been using lately to make your shooting videos..


hey Ninja…
Very interesting. Do you shoot the Coyotes? Is this your property or Yard?
I want to learn more about Night vision. I really don’t know much about it.I work with a former marine sniper who told me about some night equipment that they used in Somalia back when we were there in 93.
Once I was on my ship (USS Tripoli LPH 10),and at night I was walking around the hanger bay and these Marine units were ready to move out on some night excercises. They had Night goggles and I asked one guy if I could look through them and he said sure just don’t loose em.
So I walked up to the ships open hanger space which was really large for those who do not know or never been on a Navy Surface war ship. And it was a black dark night. I could hear the ocean splashing up against the hull of the ship as she cut through the water and I held those beat up looking issued goggles to my eyes and man O man it was like magic green day light!! 😯
I could see every ripple and white cap on the water and I could see all the clouds and sky like there was some sort of Green day light or green sun!
Coolest thing I ever saw …well one of the coolest things I ever had in my hands while I was in the service. The Marine told me that if they get lost or stolen he would have to pay about $5000.00 bucks for it!
Every soldier there had a pair. They were a bit scuffed up but man looking through em one could see all!
So I wonder what device we could buy or if any of those scopes in the $2500.00 range are worth the time?
Or do most of you guys just use a good scope and a laser pointer with a basic tactical light for night shooting?
And they speak of Generations of night scopes. I really don’t know what the real difference is except $$ and some improvement of course.
So hopefully I can learn here and then down the road after some time once I build my air guns up I can think about some night vision that would actually work perhaps unless it is not worth it.
Just thought the subject of night vision is very interesting.
Your shots are very interesting.

Nice vids Yellow! Never owning a Sony camcorder, I was wondering if it is adjustable at all or you just get stuck with the preset the camera has programmed in? Although is sounds like your video camera adjusts to the conditions present…

Here’s when I changed the setting on the camera to “‘Super’ Night Shot” and video taped another Coyote. Framerate goes down and shutter speed decreases making the footage rather rough, but giving more color. If the camera isnt on a tripod or the subject veing tapes moved pretty quick the picture is pretty bad and blurry. But the range is much better than the regular nightshot.

Camera in a different postion this time, but the distances are the same, looks closer because I zoomed in a little bit. This one didnt take he bait (near the bricks in middle) but paced back and forth like he wanted too.

Both these videos were taken at night with not much ambient light around, I couldnt see a thing.

If there was a bit more light when I was using the Super Night Shot then the framerate would be a bit better and there would be even more color, but using the regular Night Shot the framerate is always 30 fpS and color would be that grey/white even in daylight. So I try both settings to see which one gives a better picture knowing that each has its tradeoffs.

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