Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S Digital night riflescope

The Yukon Photon RT is a very interesting night vision riflescope that offers a simple and elegant solution to hunters that cannot use standard Picatinny-only equipped optics because their favorite hunting firearms offers proprietary mounting solutions - e.g. Blaser or Sako. 

Night vision riflescope Yukon Photon RT 

Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S, Picatinny and USB port
On the left side of the yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S we find a small Picatinny for securing an additional illuminator or battery pack. Right next to it, the Micro USB port.

As a matter of fact, the overwhelming majority of night vision riflescopes, whatever technology they’re based on (digital, IIT or Thermal) all come stock with a Picatinny mount.

In some cases, the mounts are replaceable with other types; however, the Photon RT is one of the few that allows the hunter to simply mount this digital riflescope on any firearm compatible with 30mm optics rings.

The body of the Photon RT includes a standard 30mm diameter mounting tube between the main housing and eyepiece, a solution already used by the previous Yukon Photon XT; the length of the tube is enough to accommodate both sets of two rings and most single-piece 30mm mounts.

Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S: eyepiece
The eyepiece has a diopter ring and features 70mm of eye relief with a 5mm diameter exit pupil. The Microdisplay is a 640x480 LCD.
Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S riflescope: objective lens
Focusing rings of the IR illuminator and objective lens on the Photon RT 4.5x42S. Note pinhole lens cover.

The mounting solution obviously is only a part of the interesting features that the Photon RT line of optics offers.

The line includes two models, the 4.5х42 and 6x50, and two options for the IR illumination module integrated in the device, identified by the “S” suffix, for a total of four models.

IR illuminator of the Yukon Photon RT 
The powerful 850nm IR illuminator of the Photon RT 4.5x42S has a focusable beam and variable brightness; it's completely controlled via software.
The three controls of the Yukon Photon RT
The three controls of the Yukon Photon RT: an encoding knob with a confirmation button, an on/off button and a small button to snap pictures or videos on the illuminator.

“S” models use an 850nm LED as IR light source, instead of the 940nm LED of the standard version. It’s a tradeoff: the “S” version illuminator is stronger, with an extended range (up to 200m), but is visible as a dark red glow, while the non-S illuminator uses a totally invisible light that however gives a slightly reduced range (up to 140m).

Riflescope Photon RT 4.5x42S: technical specs

Photon RT riflescope, replace of the cartridges 
The cartridges with the 4 AA batteries is easy to replace when needed. Two cartridges are included with the Photon RT.

We tested the Photon RT 4.5x42S riflescope. 

The 4 AA batteries are contained in an easy to replace cartridge, two are included with the scope, and offer up to 3.5 hours of use. The housing is built of a tough high impact polymer, with an aluminum 30mm tube.

An electronic reticle, with user selectable pattern and color, can be zeroed easily using the integrated “one shot” routine. The sensor used is a 768x576 resolution monochromatic CMOS, that has impressive low light sensibility figures, coupled to a 640x480 LCD microdisplay in the eyepiece.

The sensor cannot be damaged by bright light unlike IIT tubes are;  the Photon RT can be operated in full daytime without any fear of immediate or long-term damage. In any case, in front of the objective there’s a flip-up pinhole cover to improve image quality during daytime.

The Photon RT integrates a video recorder capable of capturing video and still images up to VGA resolution. Video can be downloaded to a PC using the MicroUSB port (also used to power up the device form external battery packs) or streamed thru a WiFi connection with the iOS and Android compatible Stream Vision app to YouTube and other video platforms. The Stream Vision app can also be used to remotely control the Yukon Photon RT from a smartphone or tablet, since a dedicated remote is not included.

Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S mounted on a hunting rifle.
The Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S is sleek and streamlined, once mounted on a hunting rifle.
Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S Digital night riflescope: aluminum alloy tube
A detail of the aluminum alloy 30mm diameter tube. The tube interface makes it universally compatible.

Controls are extremely easy to use and learning curve is not too bad. Only three controls are present on the Photon RT: an encoding knob with a confirmation button on top, an on/off button and a small button to snap pictures or videos. The variable power IR illuminator is focusable and is controlled via software (like basically everything on the device) using the menu system.

Test: Photon RT 4.5x42S digital riflescope. 

Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S with a Benelli Argo E Pro hunting rifle 
We tested the Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S with a Benelli Argo E Pro hunting rifle chambered in .30-06 Springfield. A perfect combination for driven and longer range hunts in the twilight or dusk.
Testing the Photon RT 4.5x42S with a Benelli Argo E Pro hunting rifle 
We tested the Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42S with a Benelli Argo E Pro hunting rifle chambered in .30-06 Springfield. A perfect combination for driven and longer range hunts in the twilight or dusk.

The Photon RT has favorably impressed us, both with good performance (in daylight too), ease of use and excellent price to quality ratio. The 30mm mounting interface, although it does increase the size of the device, pays off double fold for the advantage of using proprietary mounts not compatible with most of the competitive NVD scopes on the market.

For more information, please visit the Yukon website.

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YUKON  Photon RT 4.5x42S

Yukon Photon RT 4.5x42SFranco Palamaro

ManufacturerPulsar - Yukon Advanced Optics 
ModelPhoton RT 4.5x42S
TypeDigital imaging riflescope
4.5 optical magnification, up to 9x with digital zoom
Lens diameter
CMOS, 768x576 pixel
LCD 640 x 480 pixel color microdisplay, ± 4 diopter adjustment, 5 mm exit pupil, 70 mm eye relief 
Recognition range range 200 m

digitally generated, can be chosen from a set of preloaded patterns and colors
Mounting interfaceStandard 30mm tube
Weight870g with batteries, 750g empty
Materials/FinishesMade of composite glass fiber reinforced technopolymers on a metal frame
NotesPowered by 4 AA batteries, built-in DVR recorder, WIFI Stream Vision connectivity, Compatible with Android and IOS smartphones/tablets, MicroUSB socket, IPX5 waterproof certified
PriceN.A. (has to be requested to your local distributor)