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meajuly5 12-03-2012 03:34 PM

Alaska--tips for binoculars?
Looking for suggestions for binoculars to view wildlife from balcony--likely without a tripod--to give us a gift. Any suggestions?

Capt_BJ 12-03-2012 04:46 PM

how much are you willing to spend?

GOOD binoculars are not inexpensive

as a 'professional sailor' I spent a lot of money on quality optics (well the government did, to give me my equipment!)

My last favorite was Steiner ... what the ship bought ran around $1,000 a pair. But for your use you can get good ones for $250. I wouldn't buy a set costing less.

this would be for a basic 7x50 pair which is what were my 'regular' glasses. We also had much more powerful sets on fixed mounts (tripods), and gyro stabilized ones . . . .

this is a good page to read before you begin your search

Gilland18 12-03-2012 04:55 PM

We actually survived nicely with a considerably cheaper pair of binos, but the pp is correct. The really good ones cost plenty. I use mine for birds and wildlife and am satisfied with "good enough". That being said, binoculars generally have 2 numbers, like 8x32. The 8 refers to magnification, the 32 to the size of the barrel of the binoculars. The bigger the numbers, the more magnification and the more light allowed through. I've read, and my experience supports, that you don't want to go over 8 or 10 magnification without a tripod. The other number, you find a balance between size and the weight and the cost. What a wonderful gift.

meajuly5 12-03-2012 06:27 PM

Thanks for this great info. 250-300 is what I was hoping to spend. My camera lense is my typical bino

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