Close your eyes for a moment. Imagine you are in the mountains. Or in a forest. A light wind is blowing, the sun is shining. Perhaps you hear the sound of a creek in the distance. You open your eyes. In front of you stretches a beautiful landscape. You see something in the distance and wonder what it is. Or you spot a bird on the top of a huge spruce tree.
Maybe it’s some rare species? Keep looking and you’ll see more. That’s what we’d like to say. And hint that all you need for this is binoculars. Good binoculars. And now a bonus: have you ever observed the sky? If not, it’s high time to catch up. With a bit of luck, you will see a truly unearthly spectacle. Even more so now. After all, August and September are the best time to admire the stars. Also, the ones that flash towards the earth with dizzying speed.
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BINOCULARS – WHY DO YOU NEED THEM?
However, let’s start with more mundane views. You know that the capabilities of human vision are large, and at the same time severely limited. Therefore, an armed eye can see much more. This is important when you’re in the field. With the right equipment with you, you will see natural gems undreamed by philosophers. You’ll notice details of the landscape and animal species you don’t see every day. Isn’t that exactly why you go on an expedition? To get positively tired and see something that will return in the most beautiful memories for years to come? However, it doesn’t stop there.
Are you traveling with your other half? Or maybe you’re taking your little one into the field? Throw a good pair of binoculars in your backpack and develop your child’s passion for nature. Observing together is not only an interesting way to spend free time but also a great learning experience. Effective, because it takes place through experience, which completely eliminates the boredom factor. To sum up: properly fitted binoculars will make even an ordinary walk to the forest an excellent adventure and a way to get to know Mother Nature better.
WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO WHEN CHOOSING BINOCULARS?
Sometimes it’s easy to say, harder to execute. Perhaps you too are wondering how to choose the right binoculars. Despite appearances, it is not complicated. However, remember that when it comes to choosing optical equipment, you can’t compromise. So, do not be guided only by price. Quality really does matter. Choose binoculars from proven brands. Delta Optical, Celestron, and Steiner are brands you can confidently trust. Keep in mind that binoculars are divided by purpose. You can choose from hiking models, hunting models – usually with a rangefinder, and night vision models. You will certainly guess that tourist binoculars are designed for traditional observation. But beware: the different models differ in the parameters responsible for image magnification or visual acuity. Which ones do you need to focus on the most? We explain.
BINOCULAR PARAMETERS YOU SHOULD KNOW – GET TO KNOW THEM BETTER!
Among the most important parameters of binoculars are:
– Magnification – it determines how detailed an image you will get when looking into the binoculars’ eyepieces. The value of this parameter is indicated by the first number next to the product name. So, if you are interested in the Delta Optical Voyager S 10×32 binoculars, choosing this variant will give you a magnification of ten times. Sometimes the first number gives a fork in the 10-50 range, for example, which means that the model in question features variable magnification. Our advice: for classic observations of nature or the sky, binoculars with a tenfold magnification are enough. At higher values of the parameter, it may be necessary to use tripods, providing image stabilization.
– Lens diameter – this parameter is described by the second number in the product name. In the case of the mentioned Delta Optical Voyager S binoculars, it reaches a value of 32 mm. Remember that the higher the diameter of the objective lens, the better image quality you get. So if you care about detailed observations, choose binoculars with a diameter of more than 50 mm.
– Field of view – is nothing more than the size of the space you see through the binoculars. There are two types of field of view: linear – given in meters per 1,000 meters, and angular, whose value is measured in degrees. Complicated? Not at all! Simply put – the greater the approximation of binoculars, the smaller but more accurate field of view you will get.
– Prism – this is a glass component of the optical system, which is responsible for reversing the image through the front lens. Prisms are divided into two types: porro and roof prisms, with the former being slightly heavier, for slightly cheaper. However, if you want lightweight binoculars in your equipment, choose equipment with roof prisms. But beware: for observing the night sky, pauperism binoculars are a better choice, providing less light loss.
HOW ABOUT A TELESCOPE?
Speaking of sky observation, know that binoculars can really surprise you in a positive way. You’ll be surprised how many stars the armed eye can see. And you don’t have to reach for complicated, advanced equipment at all. The classic 10×50 binoculars will be more than enough to go on a bloodless hunt for celestial bodies. If, on the other hand, you are fascinated by the mysteries of astronomy, you can go a step further and choose a telescope. We guarantee that observing the night sky with a telescope will also appeal to the youngest members of the family. It’s a great idea for a successful weekend with the kids or a holiday adventure. But to the point. You are just starting your adventure with sky observation, so you bet on the smallest and cheapest telescope? That’s a huge mistake! Find out why.
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WHAT KIND OF TELESCOPE IS FOR AN AMATEUR?
A telescope is unequal to a telescope – we do not need to convince you of this. There are two types of devices:
– Lenticular telescopes (refractors) – are equipped with an angled cap and give an earthly, non-reversed image. They are very easy to use – even a child can easily handle them. They are suitable for daytime observation – they can replace binoculars. It is worth noting that lenticular telescopes successfully pass the test in urban conditions, where the space is polluted with scattered light. They provide excellent contrast and are suitable for observing the Moon and planets.
– Mirrored telescopes (Newtonian telescopes) – are designed exclusively for astronomical observations, as they provide an inverted image. They are much lighter than lenticular models, which makes them excellent for outdoor use. And that’s what they are also designed for. Mirror telescopes are suitable for observing the sky away from the city. In Poland, of course, you will find the best conditions in the Bieszczady Mountains. You can also go to the Sudetes or the Izera Mountains. And if you want to stay by the water, go boldly to Warmia and Masuria. This is a place where you can savor to your heart’s content the spectacle, in which the main role is played not only by the Moon and planets but nebulous objects, comets, or faint asteroids.
THE DIAMETER AND MAGNIFICATION OF THE TELESCOPE – HOW TO ADJUST THEM?
However, it does not stop there. When choosing a good telescope for observing the night sky, also pay attention to its diameter. The higher it is, the more accurate image you will get. However, if you are taking your first steps in astronomy, you can confidently choose equipment with an aperture ranging from 70 to 100 mm. A telescope with a diameter of 150 mm, on the other hand, is the next step on the road to your unearthly adventure.
And what about the magnification? Its value must not be more than twice the diameter. Otherwise, the image will be blurred. In basic telescopes, the maximum magnification ranges from 140 to 200, which is enough to see the most interesting and beautiful phenomena in the night sky. Remember that high magnification, going hand in hand with poor-quality telescope components, can give a blurry image and make observation impossible. What is the conclusion? When choosing a telescope, don’t just go by its magnification.
Take a trip to the mountains or the woods and observe nature through binoculars. Sit under a starry sky and observe a swarm of Perseids. Set up your telescope accordingly and you’ll spot planets, comets, and nebulae. This is more than just relaxation. It’s a time that will make you feel part of the world. Tiny, but integral. Isn’t that what it’s all about?