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CA in Hunting Binoculars?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2005 at 14:57
Rusty View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
Optics Apprentice

Joined: April/12/2004
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 147

Hunters, I have a question for you.


First of all CA = Chromatic Aberrations, or slight separation of colors observed at the edges of high contrast objects under bright light conditions.  After blogging in some birder forums, I can see where binocular traits can be seperated out, at least my opinion is that the birdwatchers want, need, are incensed on having:

  • binoculars with as little or no CA as possible. 
  • bright clean image with high color density, and
  • little or no edge distortions (lines bow out near the field edges).  

Birders need little CA since often they are watching birds fly or wade in water and and heavy CA can heavily degrade the image.  Birders spend more of their productive "birding" time in the daylight and are often viewing birds when there is a fair amount of sunlight.  Low light performance  


Hunter on the other hand are after binoculars with similar but differing qualities.  The following qualities listed below are my Rusty evalution taken from lots of other peoples inputs, and some of my observations (or, for what it's worth):


  • Low light performance, where a dark object can be resolved as many minutes after sunset, or before sunrise as possible.  The image itself does not have to be bright under low light conditions (your eyes adapt to the darker image), but the deer/elk still needs to be observed or resolved from the background,
  • Bright Image: The binos have to "suck up light" for the low light performance,
  • Tough as Iron Binos, the binos have to be able to take a beating while the hunter climbs up and down mountains, the collimation and housing have to stay intact,
  • CA: A fairly low amount of CA.  CA is related to resolution and how well a roof prism bino "splits the light" and puts it back together again.  If the various colored light is not adequately put back together, you get the edge effects on dark objects against light backgrounds.  

How important to Hunters, is a low CA, since most of the time (probably excluding observing caribou against a snowy background)?  If possible, an ideal roof prism bino would have all these qualities, and no one could probably afford it.   

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2005 at 17:18
ranburr View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master

Joined: May/16/2004
Status: Offline
Points: 1082

Sounds reasonabale to me.  This is why birders and hunters don't always agree on whether or not a model or brand of bino is worth a crap or not.



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