Here Are 2022’s 4 Most Reliable Thermal Targets

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Using a thermal target is the most effective way to sight in your thermal scope. They’re reliable, easy to use, and incredibly effective. The only problem a lot of people tend to face is the vast amount of options to choose from. If you’re struggling with this particular problem, feel free to let out a sigh of relief.

After reviewing 4 awesome thermal targets, we’ve come to the conclusion that the Internal Energy thermal target set is the best option. They’re incredibly durable, easy to reuse, and work in all types of weather. Stay tuned for an in-depth look at the Internal Energy thermal target, as well as 3 thermal targets that certainly gave Internal Energy a run for its money. 

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Our Top Choice – Internal Energy Thermal 4×4 Targets

Best For Using in All Types of Weather

Amazon product

This particular option is by far our favourite. The Internal Energy thermal target set screams simplicity, yet they’re incredibly effective. As they come in a pack of 30, you truly couldn’t get any more for your money. The value is at the top of its class here. Each target is fairly small, at 4 inches by 4 inches. These are perfect for super accurate sighting patterns.

This thermal target can be used in any type of weather. Whether you’re in a snow storm or brutal heat, these targets won’t fail you. To make things even better, Internal Energy thermal targets don’t need to be angled a certain way to work! That’s right, no more hassle over angles! Really the only con that’s present is the size. Some people find that they’re too small. If that’s the case for you, check out our fourth option!

The Runner Up – IR Tools ZEROING Targets

Best For Those Who Want Convenience

Amazon product

This particular thermal target, build and designed by IR Tools, is perfect for anyone who wants a super convenient option. IR ZEROING targets are great for all types of scopes, including thermal of course. This is perfect for people who have more than one type of scope, and don’t like the idea of having multiple targets. This target is like the multi-tool of thermal targets.

First of all, this particular target is 100% passive. If you’re unfamiliar with the term, it essentially means this target does not require a power source. Secondly, this target is super easy to set up. No nails, adhesive, or clamps necessary. Unfortunately this target does have a downside. You won’t be able to use it in severe weather like thunderstorms and heavy winds. It’s rated for sunny and cloudy days at the most. Overall it’s a good option. Comes in a pack of 12. 

Law Enforcement Thermal Targets

Best For Sighting in at Close Range

Amazon product

Law Enforcement Targets are a high-quality option that the majority of thermal scope enthusiasts love. This particular Amazon product comes in a pack of 12, and is known for its simplicity and efficiency. It doesn’t take too long to set up, it’s very lightweight, and is 100% passive.

You can use both cold and heat for the thermal rig. This option is great for sighting in your scope at close range. Better than all of the others in fact. The only downside of this option is that the thermal rig doesn’t last as long as some of the others. Seeing as though the pack comes with 12, for a decent price, the thermal rig lifetime isn’t that big of a deal. 

Internal Energy Thermal Targets 10×10

Best For Making Custom Target Shapes

This Internal Energy thermal target option is very similar to that of our number one option. However, the sizing is different. Rather than 4 inches by 4 inches, this option is 10 inches by 10 inches. To keep it among the same price range, the manufacturer decided to sell this option in a 5 pack. This option also isn’t as simple when compared to the 4×4 option.

With more markings and target markers on the actual thermal target, this is better for long range sighting in. One thing to make note of is that a few reviewers don’t find it all that useful at close range. Regardless, it’s a good overall option for those who need a thermal target for long range sighting in. 

How to Choose the Best Thermal Targets for You

Thermal targets are the ultimate solution to a frustrating problem. Back in the day, before thermal targets were invented, people had to find objects that were either hot or cold to sight in their thermal scopes. This was difficult, for even if you did manage to find an object, it’s doubtful that it’d be perfectly flat or have target markings. Thermal targets are specifically designed to track shots, which allows for incredible accuracy. 

When it comes to choosing a thermal target, it’s vital that you identify the features you need. For example, what type of weather will you be using it in? What type of thermal scope will you be using? To make things easier, we’ve put together a list of features that differ by device, as well as some rationale behind them. 

Weather Resistance

Certain thermal targets are more weather resistant than others. It’s not always easy to wait for a nice dry, sunny day to do some sighting in. Everything from clouds to snow can affect your thermal target. 

Passive / Non-passive

Some thermal targets require power, whereas others don’t. If you’re planning on using your target in the woods or in other isolated areas, chances are you should choose a passive form of energy. If you’re using it in a dedicated range, non-passive may be the way to go. 


Although not an actual feature, it’s important to take note of how many are within a bundle. A lower quantity is okay as long as the quality and durability is high. If not, it would be wise to get a large pack like the Internal Energy thermal targets. 


Angles affect the performance of your thermal target drastically. Some need to be propped at 70 – 80 degree angles, whereas others can be positioning straight up. Odd angles are okay when you’re at the range, but for field use, it may be hard to find trees at specific angles. 


Not all thermal targets are easy to set-up. Targets with their own adhesive or mounting assembly are perfect for when you’re out of the range. Targets that require special equipment are usually only used in a dedicated range. 


What range will you be sighting your scope in? Usually it depends on what you plan to use it for? Are you a hunter? Tactician? Military personnel? Make sure to assess the distance at which you will be using your scope. From there, make the appropriate decision. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Thermal Targets

How do passive thermal targets work? 

Generally thermal targets that are passive will reflect a certain temperature back to your scope. Much like rocks in a forest, a passive thermal target will reflect lower temperatures, therefore standing out against other structures or objects. 

How are thermal targets used to sight in a thermal scope?

The thermal target shows the scope user where their projectile landed using thermal imaging. The process is incredibly accurate and efficient. Gone are the days in which shooters have to either walk to the end of their shooting lane or reel their target back in. 

How many targets should I buy in a set?

The answer to this question typically depends on the quality of the target. If the target is low quality and can only be used once or twice, you should probably buy a larger pack. If your targets are durable and easily reusable, a smaller pack will work nicely. 

Conclusion and Final Thoughts

To conclude, the Internal Energy 4×4 thermal target is by far the best option on this list. Not only is it durable, reusable, and cost effective, it can be used in any type of weather. Other similar targets suffer from the inability to perform in certain weather conditions, while others are not nearly as durable or cost effective.

It’s perfect for both long range and short range sighting in, and if you believe they are too small, they have larger options. If you have any questions regarding the thermal target options on this list, feel free to reach out to us and we’ll be more than happy to answer your questions. 

About Annalena Wood

Annalena is carrying her rifle with passion and pride for her love of the outdoors and the experience of hunting. Her most memorable hunting season was back in 2015 when she and her dad were drawn for special elk tags. That allowed them the chance to fill their tags with an actual bull elk rather than a spike. That year both her and her dad came home with their first trophy elks, with hers a 6 by 6 pointer and her dad’s a 6 by 5.