Complete Binoculars for Safari & Birding Information
How to pick and choose the best binoculars for you
1/31/2017 - Optimized for Firefox 51.0.1
COPYRIGHT 2009 thru 2017 - David R. Woodsmall
I researched most of this information prior to our 30 day African photo safari
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BINOCULARS - SAFARIIf you are a Birder, you obviously need to take binoculars.
MY OPINION: If you are on an African photo Safari, AND everyone has a
decent camera, I WOULD NOT TAKE BINOCULARS - TOO MANY THINGS TO DEAL WITH
and a decent zoom camera, has more zoom than your binoculars - Canon SX50.
Also, you will be too busy looking and taking pictures to change
to binoculars. If you are using binoculars, you may easily miss
your camera opportunity. Other people may not agree with me.
I strongly urge you to consider binoculars that are both WATERPROOF
and that will not fog (FOG PROOF), and that are as light as possible for the
type of viewing for which you need them.
Personally,as a personal opinion only, I do not like Bushnell binoculars.
How to be a better spotter: the golden rules of watching wildlife
Most of this information about Binoculars for Safari use comes from
OR www.safari-guide.co.uk - These are two terrrific sites for Safari
Information - I suggest that you peruse them thoroughly. Either of
these sites can help you put together a really great safari. There
is much more Safari related information at their sites.
Besides these factors
A] Field of View ("width" of your view at a specified distance),
B] and the magnification - I recommend either 8x42 or 10x42
C] The types of prisms used (should be fully coated)
E] FOG PROOF
F] SHOCK PROOF (probably really Shock resistant)
G] Light-weight - can you hold it all day while you search?
H] Has a strong palce to attach straps and should come with straps
I] Should have lens caps to protect the lens
J] Should come in a protective carrying case
There are Three other major an done minor criteria for you to consider,
that you probably have not even heard about.
1] EXIT PUPIL SIZE
2] EYE RELIEF
3] TWILIGHT FACTOR
4] Consider Image Stabilization - not cheap, but getting cheaper
Safari Binoculars - How To Choose the Best One
So based on all these factors this is the best binocular to take with
you on an African safari:
Magnification: 8 x 42
Field of View: At least 330 ft at 1000 yards.
Exit pupil size: 5.25 mm or more
Eye relief: 18 or more
Prism and Coating: BAK-4 prism and Fully Multi-Coated surfaces
Weight: Not more than 30.1 oz. lbs.
The following three brands conform well to all the specifications above and I,
(Bruce Whittaker - african-safari-journals) recommend them highly for an African
Nikon 8x42 Monarch ATB - $ 228
Minox BV 8x42 BR
Bushnell 8x42 Legend Waterproof/Fogproof
Safari Binocular Reviews - Safari-Guide
EXIT PUPIL SIZE - BinocularsEXIT PUPIL SIZE - safari-guide.co.uk
EXIT PUPIL SIZE
"This is basically the amount of light that enters the objective lens
(big lens at the end of the binoculars) and then exits the ocular lens
and into your eyes. It is an important measure if you want to know how
well a binocular will perform in dim light." - By safari-guide.co.uk.
An Exit pupil size of 5.25 mm or more is recommended by African-Safari-Journal
EYE RELIEF - BinocularsMid-sized Binoculars and Eye Relief
"Eye relief is the distance from the eyepiece to the point where you can
see the whole picture. People who wear glasses often have trouble using
binoculars, because their glasses hold the binocularís eyepiece too far
away from their eyes. Itís a problem with many binoculars, but
particularly with smaller ones." There is much more such information
at their site - Michael and Diane Porter at www.birdwatching.com
"Non-line or progressive bifocal glasses make it almost impossible to
"By way of example, the Celestron Noble 8x32 was one of the best in eye
relief of all the binoculars we looked at. With its eye relief of 20mm,
it affords the full field of view, or very close to it, even to glasses
wearers." - By birdwatching.com
BIRDING and EYE RELIEFEye Relief and Birding Eyeglasses - birdwatching.com
"Normal eye relief for binoculars ranges from 9 to 13 mm. Even though
the eyecups of most binoculars fold down to let glasses wearers get
closer, in many cases, it's not close enough. If you wear glasses, you
need binoculars whose eyepieces are specially designed with long eye
relief, which manufacturers describe as 14 mm or longer.
Obviously, if you are a birder, you will want as much magnification as
you can afford and that you can carry and use all day. You also want
the lightest binoculars that do what you need.
Some birders prefer 10x50 - these are definitely heavier and harder to hold
TWILIGHT FACTOR - BinocularsTwilight Factor - astronomics.com
TWILIGHT FACTOR - How well your binoculars work in LOW Light
"A number used to compare the effectiveness of binoculars or spotting
scopes used in low light. The twilight factor is found by multiplying
the size of the objective lens (in mm) by the magnification and then
finding the square root of that result.
FOR EXAMPLE, a pair of 8x42 binoculars has a Twilight Factor of 18.3 - DRW
The larger the twilight factor, the more detail you can see in low light.
A twilight factor of 17 or better is usually required for reasonable low
light use." - quoted from astronomics.com
RECOMMENDED SAFARI BINOCULARS (good, but not expensive)I, DRW, chose the Nikon TrailBlazer 8x42 ATB Waterproof Binoculars.
We were quite happy with these. They won't reach as far as some of
the bigger "glasses", but they are very comfortable, and I am not
interested in seeing beyond the distance of my camera lens, if
I can't take it's picture, I am not interested in seeing it.
Bresser Luchs 10x42 Lux Binoculars - Safari-Guide.co.uk
Objective Lens Diameter: 42mm
Exit Pupil: 5.3
Twilight Factor: 18.33
Weight: 23.9ozs (678g)
Length: 4.9in (12.4cm) Height: 1.9in (4.8cm) Width: 4.9in (12.4cm)
Field of View: 101m at 1000 meters
Close Focus Distance: 1.2m (3.9ft)
Barr & Stroud 8x32 Sierra Binoculars - Safari-Guide.co.uk
Objective Lens Diameter: 32mm
Exit Pupil: 4
Twilight Factor: 16
Weight: 21.0ozs (595g)
Length: 5.0in (12.7cm) Height: 1.9in (4.8cm) Width: 4.8in (12.2cm)
Field of View: 129m at 1000m
Close Focus Distance: 6.6ft (2m)
Nikon 10x36 Monarch ATB Binoculars - safari-guide.co.uk
Celestron Outland Waterproof Binoculars - Amazon
Nikon 8x42 ATB Waterproof binocularsNikon Trail Blazer ATB Binoculars - 8x42
Nikon Trailblazer 8x42 ATB BinocularBIN-NK-8220 - $129 - EagleOptics
Nikon Trailblazer ATB 8x42mm Waterproof Binoculars (8220) w/ FREE UPS - $129
Nikon 7530 Trailblazer 8x42 ADV Camo ATB - $ 149 - BIGGER
Nikon Trailblazer ATB 8x42 review - Binoculars - retrevo
Nikon Trail Blazer ATB Binoculars - 8x42 - sierratradingpost - $149.95
Refurbished to factory specs Magnification:
8x Objective lens diameter:
50mm Field of view: 293' @ 1000 yds.
Waterproof and fogproof nitrogen-purged construction.
This binocular is covered by the Nikon 25-year limited warranty,
plus a No-Fault Repair or Replacement Policy.
Full-size roof prism
Eye relief: 19.6mm
Exit pupil: 5mm
Twilight Factor: 18.33
Nikon Trailblazer All Terrain Binoculars (ATB) are full-size roof prism
binoculars that are right at home or on any hunt. The Trailblazer features
a slim, easy-to-carry design with a full-size view for the budget-conscious
Nikon Trailblazer ATB Binoculars offer generous eye relief and turn-and-slide
rubber eyecups allowing the binoculars to be used as comfortably and effectively
by eyeglass wearers as those with uncorrected vision. In addition, the Trailblazer
binocular offers a sizeable field-of-view at 1000 yards.
Nikon Trailblazer ATB Binoculars incorporates Nikonís exclusive Eco-Glass (made
without the use of arsenic or lead) for lens and prism elements, as well as
multicoated lenses for maximum light transmission and image quality. Ergonomic
styling, mated with a rubber-armored exterior, the Nikon binocular provides
added shock resistance and a firm grip, wet or dry.
Nikon Trailblazer ATB Binoculars are fully waterproof and fogproof and
they are covered by the legendary Nikon ruggedness guarantee -25 Year Limited
Warranty and No-Fault Repair/Replacement Policy.
Nikon 10x42 ATB Waterproof binocularsNikon Trail Blazer ATB Binoculars - 10x42
Nikon Trailblazer 10x42 ATB Binocular from Eagle Optics
Best Binoculars for Safari Holidays - bestbinocularsreviews
IMAGE STABILIZED BINOCULARSCanon IMAGE STABILATION Binoculars - bestbinocularsreviews
INDEX and LINKS TO OTHER RELEATED INFORMATION