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Finding the Best Binoculars for You
There are so many uses for good binoculars - bird watching, hunting, boating, navigating, and observing nature. There are binoculars to meet each of these needs. But how do you find an ideal pair of binoculars for you?
As any high tech item, binoculars have many specifications and sometimes it is difficult to understand what all these numbers mean and what would be best for your needs. Here we will explain what to look for when buying binoculars and how to find a perfect balance between quality and price.
First specification is magnification power of your binoculars. It is usually a number between 5 and 12. It literally means how many times the object is magnified. You may think that the more the better. But it is not always so. When the magnification power of your binoculars is very high, shaking of your hands becomes noticeable and the image blurs.
These are no perfect magnification number, but for birding, hunting and just traveling magnification of 8 is good. If you really feel that you need more powerful binoculars, you will need a tripod as well. Also powerful binoculars are large, which is not always convenient if you have to carry it on your trip. The maximum magnification for night vision binoculars is usually 5, anything higher gives not very clear image.
Binoculars objective diameter
You will see that most binoculars have two numbers, for example 8x40, or 10x50. You already know that the first number means magnification. The second one is objective diameter of the lens. With high objective diameter the image you see through the binoculars is brighter. This number is related to magnification and the best ratio is one to five. So if you are looking at binoculars with magnification of 8, the best lens diameter would be 40.
For low light conditions you will need larger lenses. So 8x50 binoculars will be better to use at dawn, during fog and as a marine binocular. Bigger lens means higher price, and also binoculars with higher objective diameter are bulkier and weight more.
Coating of the lenses on your binoculars is also very important for the quality of the picture you will see. The coating increases brightness and clarity of the image, doesn't let any reflections affect your image.
All lenses are coated and there are four ways coating is done:
If you buy cheap binoculars for your kids, "coated" would be just fine. However, if you want your binoculars to produce really sharp, clear image, you will have to pay more and go with fully coated or fully multi coated lenses.
Also if you want to use your binocular for fishing or boating, it has to be waterproof. And look for anti-fogging lenses.
Binoculars with built in camera
And of course there are digital camera binoculars. These are binoculars that also allow you to take a picture at a distance. Very useful for bird watchers and nature observers. Camera binoculars cost more that the ordinary ones. But it might be that built in camera feature will be essential for you.
When you look for your binoculars, pay attention to the points we just mentioned. First have a clear idea for what purpose you are going to use your binoculars. This will help you to realize what features you want.
About the Author: Tanya Turner is a publisher of Binoculars Guide . This is an online magazine for bird lovers and nature observers. Find more tips on selecting birding and fishing binoculars, as well as binoculars for boating