[Tweeters] Binoculars - Re-post from March, 2017

Douglas Irle Will diwill at uw.edu
Mon Nov 12 18:04:35 PST 2018

Hi Tweets

Lots of good points in Doug's post. But I would like to suggest trying the
Seattle Audubon shop - they have an excellent selection of binoculars and
the advantage of dealing with a reputable local source. Much easier than
waiting for on-line and then having to send something back. Also, your
funds go to help an excellent local conservation resource and help to keep
the local source in business.

Brian H. Bell
Woodinville WA
Mail to bell asoc a t i s o media dot com

-----Original Message-----
From: tweeters-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu
at mailman1.u.washington.edu
<http://mailman11.u.washington.edu/mailman/listinfo/tweeters>] On Behalf Of
Doug Will
Sent: Thursday, March 09, 2017 1:55 PM
To: tweeters at u.washington.edu
Subject: [Tweeters] Binoculars


I'd like to mention something no one else has:
There really is no "best binoculars."

If you are backpacking a long way, then weight is paramount.
If you are working in low light, then light gathering power is important
[larger front objective lens, the second number].
If you use a tripod or are especially steady of hand, a higher power
(magnification, the first number) may be better.
If you are trying to follow birds in flight or flitting around, then a
lower power with maximum field of view will matter.
If you wear glasses, eye relief (usable distance from the back eyepiece
lens) may make some models unusable.
For much birding, minimum near focus distance is important.
Finally, if like me, you have substantial peripheral astigmatism, even if
it is corrected to first order by glasses or contacts, you may get a
sharper view from a smaller exit pupil diameter (diameter of the cone of
light exiting the back of the eyepiece, equal to objective diameter [1st #]
divided by magnification [2nd #]).

The considerations above are NOT completely independent as several are
intimately related.
But the caveat is that you MUST try out the optics yourself.
Start with reviews in your price range.
Then find stores with demo samples to look through.
Then, perhaps, follow Josh Glant's advice to get several you think might
work from vendors with free return policy.
Try out your two or three favorites in various conditions for various uses.
Finally, make your choice.

You'll be happier with your choice if you do.
And remember, your favorite won't be perfect in every situation, nor for
every other person!

Good luck getting a great pair for a good price,

Doug Will
Senior Research Engineer
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