Most of us have seen and used binoculars, but not many people take the plunge and purchase one. Among the reasons for these scenarios is that you may not have a specific use for this device and only find one when you’re planning a vacation, for example, on scenic spots.
However, for many other people, a binocular is among their most important devices. These people include bird watchers, nature enthusiasts, sports lovers and hunters. When buying a binoculars, these users are very clear on the specifications they want from such a device.
In this article, we’ll look at the 10 interesting things you didn’t know about binoculars and the things to consider when buying this amazing device.
To start with, Kim uses a locally made Bino!
1. You Get What You Pay For (Up To a Certain Point)
Among the most interesting facts about a binoculars is that you get what you pay for to a certain point. For instance, if you spend around $500-$750, what you’ll get is value is value for that amount. On the other hand, a binocular that costs you $200 will probably be going to provide you with twice as clear and crisp image as $100 binocular. However, once you spend higher amounts of money, these improvements will go down rapidly. That means a $1,500 binocular won’t be twice as good as binocular which costs you $750. In fact, you’ll may only get an improvement of 5-10%.
2. Previously (Aro0und 10 Years Ago, Some Binoculars Came with Gadgets Attached)
Several companies designed binocular brands that came with gadgets attached, that’s around 10 years ago. Among the common ones was one, which had an inbuilt radio along with headphones. Other common ones had digital cameras mounted in between the device’s lenses.
This design was a marketing strategy, which was meant to deceive buyers into believing that what they saw through the binoculars as the exact image you’ll get in the camera. Another thing is that these devices were usually cheap. The strategy didn’t work.
The only way to match the binoculars magnification was to utilize the ‘digital magnification’. Any person with experience in digital photography will tell you it’s cheating.
3. Most Hand-Held Binoculars Have an Upper Limit in Their Magnification
It’s interesting to know that most handheld binoculars have an upper limit in their magnification. The average person can only hold a 10x magnification steady for any length of time. That means do not try to hold a 12x magnification or higher power binoculars.
Otherwise your hands will in most instances shake, meaning that you will find it hard to view objectors easily. Make sure you mount high-powered brands of binoculars on a tripod.
4. Two Numbers Describe Binoculars
When it comes to describing binoculars, you should remember that in most cases, two numbers are used. They are 10×35 and 7×50 and so on. The first number refers to the binocular’s magnifying power, meaning that 7x will magnify objects 7 times. The second number is the aperture or diameter of the device’s front lens in millimeters. The larger the aperture is, the better the image you’ll get. However, if it’s anything above 50mm, you’ll find it hard to hold comfortably.
5. Stabilized Binoculars Are Available
If you going to use your device on a surface where you can’t use a tripod, for example, on a boat or if you have shaky hands, stabilized binoculars are available. However, you should keep in mind that it costs significant amounts of money and function by using gyroscopes to make up for the movement of the binocular.
6. Binoculars Come In Two Major Designs Named By the Prisms They Use
Another exciting fact about binoculars is that they come in two major designs, which are named using the prisms they use. One of them is the ‘Porro-Prism’, which utilizes a pair of right angle 5186prisms for rotating the image. It’s the wide body and standard binocular which most individuals are familiar with.
The other design is the ‘Roof Prism’ where a more compact and straight Abbe-Prism gets is used for correcting the image. Most compact models use the Roof prisms (the ones that look like they have just two straight tubes that have a hinge connecting them).
Roof prisms may be more compact, but they result in issues such as color separation and light loss along with other issues, which means that they need higher tolerances or specific phase-correction coatings to resolve the problem.
7. You Can Damage Your Binoculars by Breaking or Cracking the Lenses
You should realize that you can damage your binoculars by breaking or cracking its lenses, which is very hard to repair. Remember that many brands of binoculars are durable, but some people use them while on adventures such as climbing and hiking. That means you should take care of your device.
8. Coatings Are Extremely Helpful To Binoculars
Coatings are one helpful feature on your binoculars. For instance, each time light goes from air-to-glass, 7-9% of the light being transmitted can be lost. Keeping in mind that your binoculars has many such points which include the eyepieces, prisms and main lenses, you can end up losing lots of light without coatings.
A basic coating can reduce loss of light by 5-6% while multi-coats can bring down loss of light by 3-4%. The best coating should in color blue or greenish/purple, which is better since it means a multi-coat. Avoid ‘Ruby’ or Red coatings since they wash out colors.
9. Attaching a Binocular to a Camera Tripod
When attaching your binoculars to a camera tripod, you need to have a low-cost adapter. You should then find the cap cover, which is between the binocular’s two openings. It either screws off or snaps off. Once this is off, you can proceed, thread the adapter to the binocular, and then tread the adapter to your camera tripod. These threads are universal (1/4″-20), that’s unless your binoculars is an old one.
10. Binoculars Were Mostly Used For Astronomy
Binocular’s invention can be traced back to the late 17th century. However, their use of viewing things on earth or terrestrial viewing didn’t become common until the late 19th century. This was thanks to the internal prisms, which is used to ‘erect’ the image, which is viewed in the binoculars. Before this, binoculars were mostly used for astronomy.
6 Things To Consider When Buying A Binocular
The number, which is written with x, is the magnification of the binocular. That means if it’s written 10x, your device will magnify the object ten times. For example, if the hunt is 1000 meters away, it will appear as if it was a distance of 100 meters away as seen using naked eyes. For regular use, you should opt for, magnification between 7x and 12x. That’s because anything beyond these figures will be hard to manage without using a tripod.
2. Objective Lens Diameter
You will find the objective lens on the opposite side of the eyepiece. Its size is important since it will determine the amount of light, which will enter your binoculars. Larger diameter objective lens is best if you’ll be operating in low light conditions and want better images.
The lens size, which is in mm comes after the x. In relation to the magnification, a ratio of 5 is ideal. Between 8×25 and 8×40 lenses, the latter will provide you with a better and brighter image using its bigger diameter.
You’ll be using your binoculars in the outdoors on most occasions, meaning you should look for brands with waterproofing qualities. It’s usually denoted as “WP”. High-end models can be submerged in water for a couple of hours without getting damaged while regular models can only withstand limited amounts of water for some few minutes.
4. Weight & Eye Strain
Before purchasing a binocular, you should make sure you consider its weight. For instance, if you’ll be using it for prolonged hours, make sure that its weight is manageable. You should also see if it will be causing a lot of strain to the eyes while using it. High-end models can be used for several hours without resulting in eyestrain while regular models can only be used for a few minutes at a time.
5. Field of View/Exit Pupil
Field of View refers to the diameter of the area, which is viewed through the device’s glasses and is expressed in degrees. A larger field of view enables you to see a larger area. On the other hand, the exit pupil is the image, which is formed on the device’s eyepiece for your pupil to view. The lens diameter divided by magnification offers you the exit pupil. a 7mm exit pupil gives you maximum light to your dilated eye and is best for dark and twilight conditions.
6. Lens Quality, Coating
Lens coating is crucial since it reduces the amount of light, which is reflected and enables maximum light to enter. The lens quality, on the other hand, gives you a better contrast and ensures the image is aberration free. The best quality lens will work well in low light conditions since they transmit more light. They also make sure that colors aren’t distorted or washed out. If you use spectacles, look for a higher eyepoint.
How You Can Buy the Best Binoculars
The above 10 interesting things you didn’t know about binoculars and things to consider when buying this device should make it easier for you to get the best from your investment. Make sure you read online reviews of binoculars and know your needs before making your purchase.