Spotting Scope can be defined as the hybrid of telescope and binoculars. They are small, portable and have high power optics. You can use them for surveillance, birding, hunting, and viewing wildlife, landscape and other distant objects. They are also known as ”observation binoculars” or “ground telescope” but the most common name is spotting scope. So what’s the deal with this device?
The spotting scope, which is largely similar to telescopes designed to monitor stars and planets at very long distances, bring high zooming activity to enthusiasts who are not the only interested in the sky.
These binoculars, which are designed to be more suitable for nature use, are also able to work at full capacity in natural events such as rain and fog.
How would you like to use it?
We can’t always guess what you want to look closely at. But we know that nature watching, bird watching, sailing, hunting are the focus of those who want to have this type of binoculars. The way to look at the delicate or predatory animals, where you can get a close look is through a spotting scope.
If you want to have a close looks at the ships or planes passing through or watching the wildlife from the safe distance. In this, the spotting scope is perfect for situations because regular binoculars are inadequate. These spotting scopes with their high zoom ratios can easily reach an object or a living thing up to 20 meters with a 50x zoom capability.
Technical details of the spotting scope
Just like other binoculars and telescopes, there are different spotting scopes in the market. The technical details can give you a hint about the ability of the product which you are planning to buy. Values such as 20 × 50, 16-60 × 80 tell you how much zoom you can have and how wide your lens is.
The higher the number before X, the higher the zoom power of the binoculars you use. Although the average binoculars have 6x or 12x zoom power, in spotting scope these numbers can easily reach up to 60x.
The number after X is the size of the lens used on the spotting scope; it explains the device’s ability to collect light.
If the numbers you see before X is more than one, this means that the zoom power of your spotting scope is adjustable. In this case, you have a choice between these numbers.
For example, if the zoom value of the scope is 20-40x. There is a chance to see an object at 50 meters or 25 meters away. To adjust between these two values, just use the rings placed on the telescope.
Must use with a tripod
One of the biggest disadvantages of these scopes is the high zoom ratio. If the spotting scope you plan to purchase has a zoom value above 16x or 18x, you will need the tripod.
You can easily point out the difference between the spotting scope and the telescopes as spotting scopes require standard tripods similar to the cameras. In the case of sky telescopes, you will need a tripod with specially designed foot structures.
The purpose and the conditions under which the ground telescope will be used directly affect the features you are looking for. Unlike sky telescopes, spotting scopes can easily adapt to difficult conditions and resistant to external factors. You can use them in rain or snow as some have waterproof features.
At this point, it is important to determine what external factors your product may be exposed to. Heavy fog in the early morning or rainfall throughout the day in tropical climates can affect the performance of the product you purchase. Such conditions can also cause bad consequences, such as mist or water leaking into your scope.
High-tech films and coatings prepared by lens manufacturers can provide the right solution for mist caused by heavy fog or temperature changes. For waterproofing, look for the phrase mark 100% waterproof in the product descriptions of the product.
These coatings and films applied to the lenses can also have a direct effect on the light transmittance. Therefore, the quality of the optics on the ground telescope you purchase will determine how sharp and bright the images can be.
Attention to dimensions
As with ordinary binoculars, spotting scopes also have bodies that get heavier as the zoom capability grows. Some spotting scopes may have extremely heavy structures due to their larger lens systems.
Take this into account before the purchase and choose the lighter device if you are going to use them as a mobile device. Lightweight and small size scopes are portable and easy to carry. If you are planning to use them from the fixed position then choose devices with larger bodies with greater zoom capability.
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