How To Choose A Pair of Binoculars That's Right For You

Whether you like bird-watching or sky-gazing, a pair of binoculars can make your experience memorable

V. Kumara Swamy Updated: Nov 25, 2020 20:11:08 IST
How To Choose A Pair of Binoculars That's Right For You Photo: Shutterstock

Whether you are going to watch a cricket match or heading to the nearest bird sanctuary, a good pair of binoculars will make both these experiences memorable. You can even sky-gaze with high-powered binoculars. Since a good pair of binoculars is a long-term investment, you better go for a pair that you will not regret buying later. We try to help you with a few pointers:

1. When choosing a pair of binoculars, don’t be dictated by its magnification alone. Higher the magnification, narrower the field of view. Since a narrow field of view will let in less light, the images will be darker.

2. When you are deciding on magnification, you should first know what you are buying the binoculars for. Usually, binoculars with a magnification of 8 or 10 are considered fine for bird-watching. With higher magnification (starting from 10), you can even sky-gaze.

3. Besides magnification, the other key specification you must check is the diameter of the objective lens. In a 10x42 binoculars, the 10 stands for magnification and 42 for diametre of the objective lens (the bigger ones in the front). The diameter of the lens determines the amount of light your binoculars can capture which, in turn, determines the brightness of the image. Lens with a bigger diameter will capture more light.

4. You can choose from compact, medium and large binoculars. If you are a frequent trekker with a backpack, you may want to weigh your options. Compact binoculars with a comfortable grip can be held for longer periods of time.

5. Since you will be using the binoculars mostly during outdoor activities, ensure they are waterproof. Some binoculars are fog-proof too.

6. Top-of-the-line binoculars are expensive. Therefore, you should know how much you would like to spend. Once you have the budget, it is easier to zero in on a pair that meets your requirements.


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