We all love exploring. We travel in search of things that we could not define. We also travel for experiences and satisfying our needs.
Modern-day traveling always involves different gadgets. We usually carry a camera, GPS, and our phones. But what if, in the middle of roughing it out, our gadgets run out of juice?
This is where the explorer’s essentials come in. Back in the early days of travel, you only need a map, a compass, and your trusty binoculars. Nowadays, we rarely feel the need for any of this since navigation is mostly done through GPS. (Find the Best Hiking Compass)
Smartphones are even very capable of providing ample navigation for the normal traveler.
What’s The Purpose Of Having A Binocular?
Aside from navigational purposes, binoculars also give clarity. They enhance our outdoor experiences in a way that no other gadget can provide.
But regardless of its purpose, it could get quite confusing when you are trying to decide which pair of binoculars is the perfect fit for you. To make it easier, let us first explore the different types of binoculars.
Types Of Binoculars
1. Roof Prism Binoculars
This is the most recent type of modern binocular. It is built to be streamlined, lightweight, and more compact when compared to the older Porro prism binocular.
Roof prism binoculars provide brighter imagery and have greater magnification power. However, this type of binocular tends to be more expensive because of its machinery.
2. Porro Prism Binoculars
This technology was first developed in the 19th century by Ignazio Porro. This design is the basis of all binoculars today.
The Porro design is very straightforward and has better three-dimensional imaging. It also provides a wider field of view. The only downside to this old technology is that Porros are built bulky and have lower magnification properties.
Factors To Consider When Buying A Binocular
Now that we have gone through the major types of binoculars let us now look into some factors we would want to consider. Let us not dwell on too much of the technicalities that most do not understand.
The main purpose of a binocular is to magnify the view in front of us. It brings clarity to distant objects by making them look larger.
Luckily, many manufacturers make it easy for us to decide when it comes to this aspect. So when you see a binocular labeled as 10×42, the first number followed by an “x” is the binocular’s magnification power.
So in layman’s terms, it makes the object 10x larger than what we see with our naked eyes. Consequently, binoculars rated at 8×42 will magnify the object 8x larger and so on.
This is where it gets tricky. Just how much magnification do you need? Do know that bigger is not always better. Let us now look into the next factor.
The Size of the Lens
The number that comes right after the magnification power is labeled on the binocular is the lens size. The binocular lens diameter is normally measured in millimeters.
So using the example above, a binocular rated at 10×42 has a magnification power of 10x with a lens diameter of 42mm. (What Is the Strongest Magnification for Binoculars?)
So how does the size of the lens matter?
First of all, the lens size determines how physically big a binocular could get. The bigger the lens is, the larger the diameter of the binocular’s build.
Secondly, bigger lenses bring more light into the binocular. In doing so, it projects a clearer and brighter image to the viewer.
We also need to consider the usability and durability of the binocular. You can tell that the item is of high quality by looking at how manufacturers give attention to detail. When they use superior materials in crafting the exteriors, most likely, the optics are good.
Most users may not think that they need it, but having a waterproof binocular is a must. This does not only protect your gadget from wet conditions, but it will also be dustproof as well.
A bit of condensation can mess around with the optics, which in turn will affect the binocular’s output. The same goes for dust. Having a speck of dust within your optics could get a bit annoying.
Chassis and Eyecups
Most binocular casings are made out of aluminum or polycarbonate plastic. There are also top-end products that are cased in magnesium.
Normally, the cheaper binoculars are made out of plastic because they cost less. Cheaper does not always mean that it has inferior qualities.
Polycarbonate casings also have their advantages. Unlike metals, plastic casings do not expand or contract due to temperature, like how alloys do. So perspectively, this makes them better suited for use under extreme conditions.
On the other hand, eyecups are designed to keep the distance between our eyes and the lens constant. Doing so assures that we always see the full imagery every time we peek at the viewfinder.
Cheaper binoculars normally have eyecups that are made out of rubber that folds up and down. The downside is, these rubber cups will eventually fail once the quality degrades over time. It is better to get binoculars with eyecups that twist up and down.
Choosing the right binocular for you is a matter of personal preference. When you prefer convenience, then you can look up the best compact binoculars in the market and use this article as your very own binoculars buyers guide.
Remember, being pricey does not always yield the best quality. So always keep an open mind and thoroughly scrutinize your choices.