The Complete Guide to Binoculars

The Complete Guide to Binoculars

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From hunting to bird-watching, from wildlife photography to sports events, binoculars help you see what lies far away from your eye. They make the unapproachable seem so close you can almost touch it and feel it.

Binoculars are an essential item in every photographer's gear, be it to see the path ahead, monitor animals' movements, or check the best lighting for a nature shot. However, grasping the technical concepts of this optical device might sound daunting at first. Not to mention the Internet is filled with models that look all the same.

In this guide, you will learn all the terms, features, and mechanisms you should be familiar with to pick the best binoculars for your needs. Keep reading to learn more, or scroll to the answer you're seeking.


The Basics

What are binoculars?

Binoculars are outdoor optics that allow you to magnify distant objects for better viewing. Sometimes known as field glasses, they are a parallel combination of two telescopes placed together to portray an erect image to both of your eyes.

They differ from monoculars because they are designed so that an image of the same size can be viewed more comfortably with both eyes. Plus, their perspective and three-dimensional effect make viewing more enjoyable.

How are binoculars used?

Binoculars have many applications, including viewing wildlife, hunting, traveling, watching sports, stargazing, and night vision photography. Here is a more detailed explanation of how binoculars can serve you in different scenarios:

  • Bird and nature watching: a binocular allows you to view all that mother nature has to offer from a safe distance, beautiful birds included;
  • Travel and photography: with a pair of compact binoculars, you can admire the beauty from afar when sightseeing. You can opt for night vision binoculars if you plan to observe animals and other subjects at night;
  • Sports and concerts: a binocular allows you to view all the action and performances up-close and comfortably for long periods, no matter where you're seated;
Binoculars viewing effects for different scenes

What is the best binocular for each application?

There is not such a thing as the "perfect pair of binocular." It all depends on how you plan to use it. However, our experts recommend you opt for binoculars with such features (scroll down this guide to learn what each term means):

  • Bird and nature watching: choose a pair with a wide field of view and magnification of between 7x and 12x;
  • Travel and photography: look for compact and lightweight binoculars with a mid-range magnification and field of view;
  • Sports and concerts: opt for binoculars with a wide field of view, 7x - 10x magnification, and possibly even a strong zoom;

What are the binocular numbers?

All binoculars are described by using a pair of numbers, such as 7x50 or 8x30. The first number represents the magnification, while the second one is the objective lens size. When you see a 7x50 binocular, its magnification is 7x while 50 is the diameter in millimeters of the objective lenses. The size of the lens will also affect the size and weight of the model you choose.

Scroll down this guide to learn the exact meaning of "magnification" and "objective lens size." Here is a quick first introduction:

  • Magnification= the degree to which the object observed is enlarged. In other words, the "power" of the binocular;
    • For example, a 10x binocular makes an object appear ten times closer than when viewed by the naked eye;
  • Objective lens size= the bit at the opposite end to the eyepiece. It is a guideline for relative brightness;
    • It can span between 21mm to 50mm. The larger the objective lens, the more light that enters the binocular, and the brighter the image;

What are the parts of a binocular?

Not all binoculars are made equal, but some components are more common than others. Most binoculars are made of eyepiece lenses, prisms, objective lenses, a focus adjustment dial, and a diopter adjustment ring.


What are the types of binoculars?

Binoculars are classified as either Galilean binoculars or prism binoculars. Check the section called "The Technical Terms" to learn the differences in detail. Here's a quick explanation:

  1. Galilean binoculars: with lower magnification and less field of view;
  2. Prism binoculars: with higher magnification and a wider field of view;

Prism binoculars, in turn, are divided into Porro prism binoculars and Roof (Dach) prism binoculars, and this difference affects their actual shape. Here's a quick review:

  1. Porro prism binoculars: with excellent optical performance but challenging to make into compact and lightweight versions;
  2. Roof prism binoculars: available in compact and lightweight versions, but usually more costly because of their optimal optical performance;

Porro prisms tend to be bigger and bulkier. They are also less expensive, as they're also easier to make. Roof prism binoculars dominate the premium-end market and tend to have a higher price. However, the type of prism used is not a sure indication of quality. A pair of Porro prism binoculars can be just as useful as a pair of Roof prism ones. Which one you should pick depends mostly on your budget and actual needs.


The Technical Terms

There are many technical terms to know when it comes to binoculars. This does not always make it easier to choose a pair, even less to use it to its best. To help you out, we have explained in detail the most common concepts related to binoculars.

Porro Prism Binoculars

Porro prism binoculars employ a mechanism first invented by Ignazio Porro in the mid-19th century. They create an erect image with two prisms, where the optical path is bent like the letter Z.

This zig-zag design provides a slightly clearer image with more excellent depth perception and a wider field of view. However, since this system takes up space, Porro prism binoculars tend to be bigger and bulkier than Roof prism models.


Roof (Dach) Prism Binoculars

"Dach" stands for "roof" in German, as this type of prism features a roof-shaped surface. In roof prism binoculars, the internal prisms overlap closely. This mechanism allows the objective lenses to line up directly with the eyepieces, resulting in an overall H-shaped binocular and an almost linear light beam.

Roof prisms can be smaller and more lightweight than Porro prisms. This is a great advantage to make the most of binoculars while on the go. Another advantage of roof prism binoculars is that they are less sensitive to dust and water due to their internal focus.

Galilean Binoculars

Galilean binoculars take their name from the structure in the instrument used by the Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei for astronomical observation over four centuries ago. These binoculars contain convex lenses for objectives and concave lenses for eyepieces, resulting in an erect image.

Since no prism is used, Galilean binoculars can be extremely compact and lightweight. However, their maximum magnification is around 4x. Without a wide field of view, the viewing field's peripheral areas tend to be seen as out of focus. If you've ever used a pair of opera glasses, now you know that they actually belong to this type of binocular.



The short answer: how many times larger the image is when viewed through the lens;

The long answer: Binocular magnification indicates how much bigger the image will appear compared to the naked eye from the same distance. For example, if binoculars have 8x magnification, an object will appear eight times larger through the binoculars than with plain eyesight.

Magnification allows you to observe objects more closely and see details clearly from a greater distance. If you plan to shoot animals, binoculars with a magnification between 8x and 10x will allow you to view all the details without approaching them, causing them distress, or scaring them away.

Magnification is also called the "power" of the binoculars. It is one of the most critical numbers to consider when purchasing or understanding this type of equipment.

What else should you know about magnification?

Binoculars with magnification over 10x can be pretty bulky. If you opt for too much magnification in a hand-held binocular, your image will be very shaky. Make sure to have a tripod with you, especially when you are spending long periods on a trail.

Is choosing the highest magnification always good?

It might sound legit that the more magnification you have, the better the image. However, the more magnification you have, the less light reaches the eye. So while a 10x binocular can work perfectly right, 20x binoculars not that much. Unless the objective lens is massive, the image will be less clear than if you have a 10x42 pair.

Not to mention that a too high magnification can increase the shaking of your hands. To learn how to solve this issue, go straight to the Q&A part of this guide.

What is the best magnification for me?

Generally speaking, binoculars with a higher magnification offer a larger view of objects and a greater resolving power. The exact magnification you need depends on the use you plan to make of binoculars. Try out a few pairs with various magnification powers to see the difference.

Lens Diameter (Aperture)

The short answer: the objective lens diameter, where "objective lens" refers to the lens through which light enters the binoculars;

The long answer: at the same magnification, the larger the diameter of the objective lens, the easier it is to see in dark surroundings. With a bigger objective lens, your binocular captures more light, producing a brighter and clearer image. You can choose a model that fits your intended use, especially considering whether you plan to use it in the dark or not.

The size of the lens diameter affects the size of the binoculars. The bigger the lens diameter, the bigger the binoculars will be.

Bird watching with binoculars

When comparing two models with the same magnification, the larger the objective diameter is, the greater their light-collecting power. This results in a brighter image with a higher resolution. However, binoculars with large objective lenses also tend to be heavier and larger.

Based on the lens diameter, binoculars can be placed into one of the following categories:

  • Below 25mm: compact binoculars;
    • Compact binoculars are lightweight and versatile. You can bring one pair with you for travel, concerts, and spectator sports;
  • 30-40mm: standard binoculars;
    • Medium-diameter binoculars are a right mix between brightness and portability;
  • Over 40mm: for astronomical observation and business use, for example military binoculars;
    • Large-diameter binoculars have a great light collection ability. They're most suitable for being used in low light conditions, such as dawn and dusk;

Field of view

The short answer: the width you can see with the binocular;

The long answer: the field of view is the side-to-side measurement of the circular viewing field or subject area. In other words, it refers to the area visible through your binoculars.

It is divided into three expressions: real field of view, apparent field of view, and field of view at 1,000m. The rule of thumb is that the wider the field of view, the easier it is to find objects. This also makes binoculars more comfortable to use, allowing you to see a more significant deal of details.

The field of view is indirectly proportional to magnification. It is a product of the diameter of the objective lenses in relation to magnification, plus other structure and design factors. The larger the magnification, the less field of view your binocular will have. This means that you see less of the area in front of you when you increase the magnification power. Even though the details are magnified, the target area shrinks.

In general, binoculars with a wider field of view work best for locating objects in motion - for example, fast-moving animals - within the view field.

Real Field of View

The short answer: the visible range of binoculars from a fixed position;

The long answer: the real field of view refers to the angle of the visible field seen without moving the binoculars. It is expressed by the angle measured from the center of the objective lens.

The wider the real field of view, the easier it is for you to find objects. The real field of view influences your viewing comfort, as it allows you to keep track of moving subjects without having to move your eyes away.

Apparent Field of View

The short answer: the angle of the magnified field when you look through binoculars;

The long answer: the apparent field of view refers to the angle in degrees of the image you can see when looking through binoculars. The larger this number, the wider the field of view you can see even at high magnifications.

A wide apparent field of view is also a sign of a wide actual field of view even at high magnification. Even at the same magnification, a wide apparent field of view delivers images with greater impact.

Field of View at 1,000 Meters

The short answer: the range in meters visible 1,000 meters ahead when binoculars are in a fixed position;

The long answer: the field of view at 1,000 meters is the visible area's width at a distance of 1,000 meters, which can be seen without moving the binoculars.

Look through binoculars at distant buildings

Exit Pupil

The short answer: how bright an image will appear in low-light conditions. The bigger the number, the brighter the image;

The long answer: the exit pupil indicates how well a binocular will perform in dim light. The rule of thumb is to pick a binocular with a similar size exit pupil to your own. Our pupils' diameter changes according to the light conditions of our environment. For this reason, you should consider whether you plan to use binoculars in low light conditions.

If you hold binoculars away from your eyes and up to the light, you will see a bright circle in the center of the eyepiece. The exact size can be measured by dividing the objective lens by the magnification of the binoculars. A 10×50 binocular, for example, will have an exit pupil of 5, and a 7 x 42 model will have an exit pupil of 6 millimeters.

The exact pupil diameter varies according to the time of the day but also age and other factors. In bright conditions, your eyes' pupils contract to about 2 or 3 millimeters. While in low light conditions, your pupils open to about 5 to 7mm to allow more light to pass through them. You should choose binoculars with a similar value exit pupil if you plan on using them during low light conditions or at night.

Dusk Number

The short answer: it's relevant if you use the binoculars in the dark or poor lighting conditions. The higher the dusk number, the better the performance in low light;

The long answer: the dusk number is calculated by multiplying the diameter of the objective lens by the magnification factor and then extracting the root from this number.

Dusk number = √ (diameter lens x magnification factor)

Generally speaking, a dusk number of less than 15 is suitable only for daytime. The optimal number depends on each situation and on the dusk time of a specific location. For example, in the Netherlands - where there is a long dusk time - you need a binocular with a high dusk number. If, instead, you go to the tropics - where the dusk time is relatively short - you should focus more on brightness and light intensity.

Eye Relief

The short answer: the distance between the lens of your binoculars to the tip of your eye while the entire field of view is visible;

The long answer: eye relief is the distance from the outer surface of the eyepiece lens to the position where the exit pupil is formed. Binoculars with longer eye relief are more comfortable to look through and cause less fatigue even after long periods of use, especially for eyeglass wearers.

When viewing a scene through any lens with incorrect eye relief distance, the picture you see will be distorted, either with a fuzzy image or with a black ring around the field of view.

Standard binoculars have eye relief ranging from only a few millimeters to 25 millimeters or more. If you wear glasses, we'd recommend an eye relief above 10mm. Extended or long eye relief reduces eye strain and is ideal for eyeglass wearers.

There are two types of eye relief:

  1. Standard Eye Relief (3.5 - 4 inches)
  2. Long Eye Relief (Above 4.5 inches)

Other Technical Features

● Image Stabilization (IS)

The higher the magnification of binoculars, the clearer is the image shaking. This can result in loss of image clarity and prevents long periods of use.

The least expensive mount for binoculars is a simple camera tripod. However, this type of mounting is tiring for your neck and back. If your budget allows it, you can opt for image-stabilized binoculars, which have an active built-in optical system that compensates for the shaking associated with hand-holding.

Binoculars equipped with image stabilization functions provide a clear, stable field of view in all scenes.

● Baffling

An optical baffle is a construction designed to block light from a source shining in front of binoculars and reaching your eyes as unwanted light. With "baffling" in binocular terms, we're referring to the presence of shielding against stray light and internal reflections.

To check if your binocular has quality internal baffling, point it at a bright surface and check the field of view. Without this form of shielding against stray light, you'll notice a loss of image contrast in the subject you're observing.

● Interpupillary Distance (IPD)

It is the distance between the eyes that differs from person to person. The adjustment for this difference is accomplished by opening or closing the hinged portion of the binocular to bring the eyepieces closer together or farther apart.


Binocular Lenses & Lens Coating

Binocular Lenses

Not all binoculars use the same lens types. Here is a brief description of the most common binocular lenses:

  1. Objective Lens = the lens closest to the subject;
  2. An objective lens usually combines both convex and concave lenses. The result is a minimum color fringing and clearer images;
  3. Eyepiece Lens = the lens closest to the eye;
  4. An eyepiece lens magnifies the image formed by the objective lens;

Lens Coating

The optical coating of the lenses is one of the most important and expensive elements in a binocular. When light hits a lens, some get lost in the optic and is not transmitted to the eye. Optics like binoculars are coated with select chemicals to maximize the amount of light transmitted from the objective lens to the eye.

Binoculars can be coated, fully coated, multi-coated, or fully multi-coated. This attribute tells you how many layers of optical coatings are on how many lens surfaces.

  • Coated Lenses - with a single layer on at least one lens surface;
    • The simplest coating is made from anti-reflective magnesium fluoride and applied as a thin, single layer to one side of one of the lenses;
  • Fully Coated Lenses - with a single layer on all air-to-glass surfaces;
    • One coating is applied on both sides of the lenses and the prism;
  • Multi-Coated Lenses - with multiple layers on at least one lens surface;
    • The coatings are used on one or more of the lens surfaces with different refractive indices to cover a wide range of wavelengths;
  • Fully Multi-Coated - with multiple layers on all air-to-glass surfaces;
    • Found on high-end models, these coatings are applied on all prisms and lens surfaces to achieve up to 95% light transmission;
A rabbit with a telescope

Prism Coatings  

Coatings can be applied not only on lenses but also on prisms. Prism coatings increase light reflection while also improving image brightness and contrast.


Chassis Materials & Housing Styles

Chassis” refers to the frame of the binocular around which the whole optic is built. See it as the "body" of the binocular, which can be made of different materials. Here are some of the most common ones:

  • Aluminum: the most popular material for binoculars is aluminum. Using an aluminum alloy is enough to manufacture light, strong, inexpensive, and versatile optics. Plus, this material is naturally corrosion resistant;
  • Magnesium: magnesium is another metal alloy used because of its high strength-to-weight ratio. Binoculars made of magnesium tend to be even lighter than their aluminum counterparts while being equally resistant to corrosion. Pick binoculars made of either material if you plan on holding them for long periods;
  • Polycarbonate: Polycarbonate is a polymer resin that is inexpensive, strong, corrosion-proof, and easy to manipulate. The main advantage of this material is that it's temperature resistant. Binoculars made of polycarbonate suit you well if you want to use them in extreme conditions;

Housing Styles

The more you research binoculars, the more differences you can spot. The housing style is one of them, and it refers to the design of the binocular. It doesn't affect its performance, so it's more a factor influencing the form and function of the optic.

With "housing style," we're referring to the central portion of the binocular that connects the two optical tubes in roof prism binoculars. In that same central part of binoculars, you'll usually find the center hinge and focusing mechanism.

Two housing styles are prevalent:

  • Open bridge: they can be easily used on a tripod and tend to be more lightweight, allowing for a full wraparound grip of the binocular;
  • Closed bridge: the binoculars barrels tend to be closer to each other, this way preventing your hands from wrapping all the way around;

Even when it comes to housing styles, there's no right or wrong. It all depends on how you plan to use your next pair of binoculars.


How to Focus Your Binoculars

Most binoculars have a center focus wheel and a right eye diopter adjustment placed near the eyepiece. Our eyes don't always have the same vision strength, so focusing a pair of binoculars allows us to see clearer images for more extended periods without feeling dizzy or tired.

When looking at a subject about 30-50 feet away, close your right eye and focus your binoculars with the center wheel until the image is clear for your left eye. Once clear, close your left eye and open your right eye. Look at the same target and adjust the right side diopter only on the right eyepiece until the image is clear. Once the image is clear, and the right side diopter setting is fixed to your preferences, open both eyes and use only the center focus wheel to make any adjustments.

Looking at birds with binoculars

Based on their focusing mechanisms, binoculars can be divided into a few types:

  • Center-focus binoculars, which use a centrally mounted wheel to adjust both eyepieces at once. Focusing these binoculars usually requires only one quick adjustment, so that's why center-focus binoculars are one of the most popular models;
  • Individual-focus binoculars: they lack a centrally located focusing mechanism, where the diopter adjustment ring is turned to focus both eyepieces individually;


How Binoculars Work

Binoculars can be considered as two identical telescopes placed next to each other. For this reason, to understand the working principle of binoculars, you need first to learn more about telescopes.

The objective is a lens placed at the front of each telescope. Its role is to gather light from the subject you're looking at and focus it in the eyepiece, where the light is formed into a visible image and magnified to take up a large portion of the retina. The magnification depends on the focal length of the eyepiece, spacing between 5x and 10x for most binoculars.

How do binoculars work?

Binoculars work by turning around the light from the subject you're looking at so that your eyes can see it as closer than it actually is. These optics rely on prisms - corrective elements between the objective and the eyepiece - to transfer beams of light to your pupil through internal reflection inside the binocular. These blocks of light also turn the image right-side up and orient the view properly left to right.

Here's a summary of how prism binoculars work:

  1. Light enters the objectives;
  2. Light passes through a set of prisms;
  3. The prisms turn the image right side up;
  4. The image leaves the eyepieces to enter the viewer's eyes;
  5. You see the image from your binocular;


How to Choose Binoculars

Choosing a pair of binoculars can be daunting, especially if it's the first time. Trying to find the best binoculars to suit your needs? Don't be overwhelmed! We have enlisted here below some of the factors to pick the best binocular for your needs:

  • Lens diameter: as we've seen a few paragraphs above, the wider the lens, the brighter the image. When you choose a pair of binoculars with a wide lens diameter, you'll also see fine field marks and color variations in your subject;
  • Exit pupil: the exit pupil determines how bright and clear images will appear;
  • Focus depth: this number describes how closely binoculars can focus;
  • Weight: a heavy pair of binoculars can be difficult to hold steady for long observations. It can also cause shoulder, neck, or back pain;
  • Cost: prices can range from 20$ to 2,000$ or higher. When possible, read through the specs of each model to find the best bang for your buck;
  • Glass: the type and quality of the glass used for the lenses and prisms can impact how clear, sharp, with accurate color rendition, and higher contrast the resulting images will be;
  • Waterproofing: waterproof models are more resistant to repeated changes in temperature and humidity;

Interested in night vision photography? Check out our guide on how to choose the best night vision binoculars!


How to Use Binoculars

You might have used binoculars in your outdoor adventures as a kid. In case you didn't, here is how you are supposed to use these optics correctly:

  1. Adjust the eyecups for your eyesight and eyecup height, especially if you usually wear glasses;
  2. Regulate the left and right eye width of the ocular lens to form a single circle. This will reduce eye strain and make you feel less dizzy in the long run;
  3. Cover the right lens, pick an object, and turn the focus dial until the image is sharp;
  4. Cover the left lens, adjust the diopter until the image is sharp;
  5. Look through the binoculars with both eyes and make sure that the image is clear and focused;
  6. Adjust the central focus wheel to see a neat image at different distances;


How to Clean Binoculars

Binoculars are incredibly powerful and yet delicate. The best way to prolong the product span of binoculars is not to clean them at all. While it sounds counterproductive, regular cleaning can damage the lenses and coatings.

However, there are times where you don't have a choice. Your binoculars are now covered in dirt from rain and mud after returning from your latest nature adventure. Leaving them in this state will make them unusable. Here's what you need to clean your binocular:

  • Microfiber cloth
  • Lens cleaning solution, water, or kit
  • Lens pen or canned air

The right way to clean a pair of binoculars is often stated in the product manual, where you should find the tools and chemicals recommended by the manufacturer. There's no point in spending money on such expensive optics and then wasting it with improper care. These are some of the materials and tools you should keep away from binoculars:

  • Paper towel or toilet paper
  • Household cleaners
  • Clothing items
  • Dish soap and other detergents
  • Other sharp objects or your fingers (especially for the binocular lenses)

How to Clean Binoculars?

Binoculars might look like a single piece, but they actually consist of several components assembled together. Take this into consideration during the cleaning process, as each part requires special attention and care. Here's how you can clean each piece of your binocular, from the lenses to the body and more:

  • Binocular lenses:
  • Use a lens cleaning pen's bristles while holding the binoculars upside down. Then use some canned air and blow off carefully the loosened dirt;
  • Use a cotton swab with water or a cleaning solution, then wipe away gently any remaining dirt;
  • Use a lens pen pad or lens cloth to wipe out all remaining smudges in a circular motion;
  • Store your binocular only once fully dry;
  • Binocular chassis:
  • Take a soft cloth;
  • Wipe down the body of the binocular to remove any dirt or dust;
  • Binocular interior:
  • If you need to clean the interior, use a lens-specific cloth and cleaning solution;
  • If you need to dismantle the binocular, start from the cap, remove the eyepieces, take off the cover plate, and only then remove the bottom plate to clean the inside of the objective lenses;
  • Rubber eyecups:
  • Use a cleaning solution or water on the sticky or rough eyecups;
  • Rub the eyecups area until clean;

How Not to Clean Binoculars?

Cleaning your binocular might look like an easy task. However, if you are not using the correct cleaning tool, you'll end up compromising the resolution and light transmission. Here's how you should not clean your binocular:

  • Binocular lenses:
  • Avoid using your T-shirt or any other piece of clothing to clean off dust, as this can cause microscopic scratches on the lenses;
  • Refrain from using paper towels, tissues, or toilet paper either;
  • Avoid breathing onto the lens so as not to create water spots that will be difficult to clean when dry;
  • Do not use any window or glass cleaner, as these products often include chemicals that can damage the lenses of your binocular;
  • Do not pour any cleaning solution directly onto the lenses, as it can seep into the internal components and damage your binocular;
  • Binocular chassis:
  • The body of the binocular is the easiest part to clean. Unless you are using sharp objects or harsh chemicals, you should be fine;
  • Binocular interior:
  • When possible, do not dismantle binoculars, as this can ruin the optical alignment and void the product warranty;


How to Take Care of Binoculars

Binoculars are made to be weather-resistant, but they're not indestructible. Their worst enemy is mold on the lens or prism. Mold reduces the contrast and degrades the delicate optical performance. For this reason, you must protect your binocular against the weather, dampness, and mold.

Here is how you can take care of your binoculars:

  • Wipe down with a soft dry cloth all traces of water, be it droplets of rain.
  • Cleanse away all traces of water, even from waterproof binoculars.
  • Buy a high-quality strap to prevent damage from drops.
  • Keep your binocular stored in a binocular case when on the trail.
  • Store your binoculars in a dry and safe place when not in use.

When possible, opt for waterproof spec binoculars that would require less maintenance during storage. Some binocular accessories - such as replacement caps, rain guards, and eyepieces - can be handy in case of loss or damage.

Here are other top suggestions on how to take good care of your binos:

  • Don't over clean, as you can cause more damage to the lenses;
  • Avoid fingerprints, especially with dirty fingers;
  • Use the lens caps when not in use to protect your binocular at all times;
  • Invest in high-quality accessories, such as a shoulder harness and a binocular storage case or bag;
Display of the various parts of binoculars


Binoculars Q&A

  • How can I prevent shaky hands?

Most binoculars are not extremely lightweight, unless you opted for compact binoculars. When holding them for long periods, it's easy to feel your hands shaking. Here's what you can do to prevent shaking:

  1. Use a proper technique: grip the binoculars with both hands and bring them to your eyes. Then bring your elbows in towards your chest, allowing them to rest against your chest and upper belly;
  2. Lean against a solid surface or sit down;
  3. Don't hold them too tightly;
  4. Set the binoculars on something hard, such as a rock, rail, a picnic table, etc.;
  5. Use binocular accessories, such as a monopod, tripod, straps, or a chest harness/bipod;
  • What are other types of binoculars out there?

There's always a perfect pair of binoculars for your needs. The point is knowing how to look for it. Here are some of the most common types of binoculars out there:

  • Compact binoculars: smaller and lightweight, they're the best choice to take along on hikes and other outdoor adventures;
  • Standard-size binoculars: a full-size binocular is versatile and can be used for almost everything, spacing from nature watching to spectator sports;
  • Wide-angle binoculars: they're best for tracking fast-moving action across a wide area;
  • Night vision binoculars: they allow you to see all the details of a subject even at night;
  • Zoom binoculars: they increase the magnification to focus on the details, both for distant and near view;
  • Waterproof binoculars: they deliver clear images despite all weather conditions, including fog, rain, and ice;
  • Armored binoculars: their chassis is covered by rubber or other synthetic material. Despite not being waterproof, they are more resistant to scratches;
  • Center focus binoculars: they use a single wheel to focus on objects that are both very close and far away;
  • Individual eyepiece focus binoculars: they require you to focus each eyepiece when looking at an object. They're suitable for viewing medium-range and long-range objects, but not for closer ones;
  • No focus or focus-free binoculars: this type of binoculars is an economy version of individual eyepiece focus binoculars, where the eyepieces are locked and can't be adjusted;



Binoculars are among the most versatile optical devices in terms of features, size, and even applications. These useful and flexible optics are used by everyone, from opera fans to wildlife and night vision photographers.  

However, not all binoculars are created equal. Being able to choose the right pair for you makes a big difference in the long run. We hope this guide was useful in explaining what to look for in binoculars and how to evaluate them so that you can find the best pair for your needs.

With plenty of photography and outdoor enthusiasts on our staff here at Apexel, we have the expertise and the best equipment to help you gear up for your next adventure.

Check our store to shop your favorite or contact us today to receive a wholesale price quotation!

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1 comment

Elna Rose

I read your post really very informative and well-written post keep it up.

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