Line of Sight Binoculars
We all have that person in our life who seems to spend more time looking at things through their binoculars than without them! And the chances are that when it comes to them buying a new pair, they’re going to want to choose for themselves. But there are still lots of options for the binocular fan when birthdays and Christmas comes around.
We’ve rounded up some of our favourites to make this years gift shopping a little easier!
The shake when watching larger items through a pair of binoculars tends not to be too intrusive. However, when you’re looking at smaller items it can start to become annoying. Then there’s the arm ache which comes from using the binoculars for any length of time. Suddenly the enjoyment from their use, quite literally becomes a pain in the neck. A good tripod gets rid of these issues and makes it much more possible for their long term use.
Some binoculars come with a tripod mounting point, so do check that out before buying a tripod as a gift. Though the good news is that you rarely need to match the brand of tripod to the brand of binocular. This is because the thread size is a standard 1/4×20. It’s also not the end of the world if the binoculars don’t have a mounting point, it just means that you’re going to need a bracket attachment to hold it in place. Now wondering just where this tripod mounting point can be found? Well, it’s normally located under a cap just in front of the centre hinge that brings the two halves of the binocular together. If there is no threaded socket there then you’re going to need an adaptor or a mount such as the Snapzoom Universal one detailed below.
When you need your binoculars, you need them right there and then. You don’t want to be searching in a back pack to find them. But you also don’t want them hanging from your neck for long periods of time as that just starts to hurt. So this is when a harness comes into play. Quick easy access and a comfortable way to carry your kit.
In terms of features, this is where really thinking about where the binoculars are used most often comes in. In a hot and humid environment, breathable materials are essential, if not its all going to get very hot and sweaty. Many also come with a waterproof cover, which is essential for all weather users. If the binoculars are used for hunting or bird watching then you’re going to appreciate silent operation. There’s nothing like the noise of velcro opening to scare everything off! If you’re carrying a gun or walking pole then one handed opening is also going to be key.
Do check sizing as well. Many come in two sizes depending on the size of the binoculars to be stored. And check out what padding is inside the main pocket, fleece is often used to ensure that kit is protected from the occasional knock and that they don’t move around once stored inside.
Lens Cleaning Kit
After a day out in the field those binoculars are going to need a good clean in order to get them ready for the next trip. It never ceases to amaze me how much dust can get in all the nooks and crannies! And there’s nothing worse than dirty lenses, kind of pointless having them if you can’t see through them! We weren’t sure about the Koala Kleaner Alcohol Free Kit before buying it but it surprised us with just how clean it got the lenses with minimal rubbing. And we found that you needed hardly any cleaner sprayed onto the cleaning cloth to get a good result. Definitely on our highly recommended list.