Whales became intelligent when they were aggressively hunted many years ago, and they learned to avoid boats and people. If you’re one of the many who enjoy watching them play, you’ll want a good pair of binoculars to bring them closer and allow you to see them in detail.20
There are numerous types of binoculars available today, and it can be difficult to know where to begin your search for the ideal pair. We’ve reviewed numerous titles and compiled a list of six that we believe you’ll enjoy. Of course, we want you to get the full picture of each, so we’ve included a list of some of the advantages and disadvantages of each.
The Best Binoculars for Whale Watching
Nikon Action 750 – The Best All-Around Binoculars Binoculars For Whale Watching
Nikon’s 7239 Action 750 EX Extreme All-Terrain Binocular features a magnification of 750 and a 7.14 exit pupil. Multi-coated objective lenses maximise light transmission through the Porro prisms. They have a long eye relief and turn-and-slide eyecups that make them comfortable to wear for people who wear glasses. Additionally, these binoculars feature an easy-to-use large central focusing knob and a diopter control for focusing each barrel independently.
The Nikon 7239 binoculars feature a rugged rubber-coated body that provides a secure grip and prevents them from slipping out of your hands. Additionally, they are made to be waterproof and fogproof.
50 is a fairly large optic lens, which makes these binoculars quite heavy to carry. It’s made even more challenging by the absence of a strap on the carrying case. Another issue with these binoculars is that the lens caps are extremely frail and unattached to the binoculars at all, making them easily lost.
In conclusion, we believe that these are the best whale-watching binoculars available in 2020.
Binoculars for Whale Watching Athlon Optics Midas
The 842x magnification Athlon Optics Midas ED Roof Prism UHD Binoculars feature extra-low dispersion objective lenses with a 5.25 exit pupil. The binoculars’ lenses feature an advanced fully multi-coated dielectric coating that reflects over 99 percent of incident light. The extra-low dispersion lenses, in conjunction with the ESP dielectric coating, produce vivid and accurate colours. They have a long eye relief, which makes them more comfortable to wear, and are argon-purged for improved thermal stability and waterproofing.
There were a few issues we discovered with these binoculars. Close-range focusing is limited to less than three metres. This reduces the amount of area visible without moving the binoculars.
The central focus knob is stiff, and when turned, makes strange noises. It sounds like the movement of something that has become stuck and is now breaking free.
Additionally, you must exercise caution with the rubber lens caps. They easily fall out, leaving your lenses exposed.
Wingspan Spectator 832 – Binoculars For Whale Watching
The Wingspan Optics Spectator 832 Compact Binoculars feature an eightfold magnification, an 8.00 exit pupil, and 32mm objective lenses. They also have a wide field of view. They’re compact and lightweight, making them convenient to transport. Additionally, they come with a lifetime warranty. If anything happens to your binoculars, Wingspan will replace them. That is uncommon, however, because they feature a non-slip grip that helps keep them firmly in your hands.
These binoculars are compact and easy to transport, but they can be difficult to focus, particularly when using the smaller objective lens. It does not allow for a great deal of light to enter, which makes your images appear dark.
Additionally, these binoculars fog easily if they come into contact with any moisture. That’s a problem because the lens covers are difficult to attach, and as a result, you tend to set them down carefully, without attaching the covers, until you’re ready to store them. If there is dew or light rain, they will easily fog up due to the moisture.
Bushnell H2O 1042 Binoculars for Whale Watching
Bushnell’s H2O Waterproof Roof Prism 1042 Binoculars offer tenfold magnification, 42 mm objective lenses, a 4.2 exit pupil, and a 102-foot field of view. It is waterproof and has a rubber coating for a non-slip grip. Bushnell provides a lifetime warranty against any damage to these binoculars.
These Bushnell binoculars are difficult to use due to their difficulty focusing and producing dark, blurry images. They’re especially difficult to see with because there are no eyecups to block out ambient light.
These binoculars are cumbersome to carry and have an awkward grip. Additionally, they fog easily.
Binoculars for Whale Watching Sightron 832
The Sightron SIIBL832 832 Binocular set has a magnification of 832 and an exit pupil of 4.00. These binoculars feature a phase corrected prism and fully multi-coated objective lenses for the sharpest possible images. They are waterproof and fogproof, which enhances visibility, and feature twist-up eyecups that are comfortable on the eyes.
The images produced by these binoculars are subpar. The colours aren’t particularly vibrant, and they appear quite dark. In cold temperatures, the focuser is stiff, and the strap and lens caps are poorly constructed. The strap’s poor quality makes them uncomfortable to wear for an extended period of time.
Binoculars For Whale Watching Celestron SkyMaster 2080
Celestron’s SkyMaster 2080 Binoculars have an exit pupil of 4.00. They feature multi-coated optics that let in the maximum amount of light possible. Additionally, they feature a long eye relief and a rugged rubber coating for added comfort.
These binoculars are not collimated, making them difficult to focus. Whatever you do, it appears as though you will always have double images. They do not wish to merge into one, and if they do, you’d be wise to remain stationary, as even the slightest movement blurs the field of vision.
The neck strap on these binoculars is of poor quality and is actually painful to wear due to the viewer’s weight.
The Buyer’s Guide to Binoculars: What You Need to Know About Magnification and Objective:
Binoculars are designated by a series of numbers, for example, 1042. This indicates the lens’s magnification and the objective lens’s diameter.
Magnification: 10x means that these binoculars have ten times the magnification power of standard binoculars, allowing you to see objects ten times closer than they actually are.
42 is the diameter in millimetres of the objective (front) lens. The objective lens is the lens that allows more light to pass through the binoculars, resulting in bright, clear images of the objects you’re viewing. The objective lens is the largest lens in the binoculars and has a direct effect on the size and weight of the binoculars you select.
How much magnification are you looking for?
3–5 times: used in theatres to bring the audience closer to the performers
7x: a term frequently used by sports enthusiasts
ten times and greater: used by big-game hunters for long-range observations
The objective lens and magnification powers of the binoculars determine their weight. Because the heavier weights can be difficult to maintain for extended periods of time, larger pairs of binoculars can be attached to a tripod to provide a more comfortable viewing experience.
Binoculars with Zoom:
These binoculars typically feature a thumbwheel that allows you to adjust the magnification without repositioning the binoculars. These are identified by a range, for example, 10-3060. This means that the lowest magnification setting is ten times, and they can be adjusted up to thirty times closer.
While zoom binoculars offer greater versatility, keep in mind that all binocular prisms are designed for a single power. As you decrease that value, your image may lose some of its sharpness.
The exit pupil value indicates how bright the object you’re viewing will appear in low-light conditions. The magnification factor is calculated by dividing the objective diameter by the magnification number.
For instance, if you have 1042 binoculars, you would divide 42 by 10, yielding a 4.2mm exit pupil diameter.
In low-light conditions:
It is recommended to use models with a larger exit pupil (5mm or greater).
For viewing during the day:
The human pupil can narrow to approximately 2mm in diameter in order to block out light. Because all binoculars have exit pupils that size or larger, the size of the exit pupil is irrelevant.
Relief for the Eyes:
The eye relief measurement refers to the distance between your eyes and each eyepiece when viewing an object. A longer eye relief enables you to hold the binoculars further away from your face, which increases their comfort.
Tip: For those who wear glasses, the eye relief number is beneficial. If you do wear glasses, we recommend binoculars with at least 11mm of eye relief.
The field of view indicates how large an area (in feet) you can see from 1,000 yards away. The field of view typically narrows as the magnification number increases.
This wheel adjusts the focus of both viewing barrels simultaneously.
Diopter adjustment ring: The wheel is typically located near the eyepiece on one of the barrels. It precisely focuses each barrel.
Type of prism:
All binoculars contain prisms that adjust the view to present it exactly as it is. Without prisms, the objects in front of you would appear upside down due to the way light passes through the binoculars.
- Porro prisms are typically less expensive than roof prisms, but they are more inconvenient.
- Roof: These binoculars are typically more compact and slimmer than those equipped with Porro prisms. They’re an excellent choice for outdoor enthusiasts. Because you can typically see a little more detail, they are typically more expensive. More information about the distinctions can be found here.
Coatings for Lenses:
When light strikes the prisms in the binoculars, some of the light that enters is reflected out, giving the appearance of objects being darker than they actually are. The lens coating helps reduce reflection, allowing the maximum amount of light to pass through.
Waterproof and Resistant to the Elements:
Waterproof: These typically include O-rings to help seal the lenses and keep out moisture, dust, and other small particles.
Weather-resistant: These are designed to withstand light rain but not complete immersion in water. They are not completely watertight.
Nothing is more infuriating than your binoculars fogging up due to the temperature difference caused by your warm breath in the cold air. However, it is not always vexing. Fogging can also trap condensation inside.
To avoid internal lens fogging, manufacturers have begun to use inert gas with no moisture content inside the optical barrels rather than air. The gas will not condense. This protection applies only to the internal lenses; it does not apply to the external ones.
Additionally, the following are some of our other guides:
What characteristics should you look for in a pair of safari binoculars?
Which binoculars are ideal for a visit to Yellowstone National Park?
Conclusion: Best Binoculars For Whale Watching
We’ve explained what all the numbers mean when it comes to binoculars and provided a list of features to look for. Allow us to quickly summarise our three favourite pairs of binoculars. Hopefully, we’ve provided enough information to assist you in determining your specific requirements and narrowing down your options. Now all you have to do is have fun shopping and make the best selection possible for your needs. We wish you luck in your search for the best whale-watching binoculars for your specific needs!