Finally, you have decided to get a spotting scope and add it to your optical tools collection. But there is a problem: which one are you going to get?
You can sit around all day and browse over 20 pages of spotting scopes with hundreds of different sizes and models; not to mention, deal with the confusion on which one is better. Yes, you could do that. Or, you could save yourself the trouble and know first what a spotting scope really is and see what you really want. I’d highly suggest to see this list that contains a lot of spotting scope reviews.
What is a spotting scope?
Often compared to an astronomical telescope, the spotting scope has set itself apart to be a modified telescope which can be used during the day. It produces an upright image unlike the other which produces a reversed one. It is also smaller in size for portability, but in exchange for a lower magnification. It makes up for the magnification, however, as most spotting scopes are water and fog proof.
Where do you use a spotting scope?
Since it provides more magnification than binoculars, spotting scopes are often used for viewing, hunting or even surveillance of ships, landscape, wildlife and other distant objects. It is also used a lot for birding and scoring targets. Spotting scopes are also used in taking long distance pictures with the use of capable cameras.
What do the numbers mean in a spotting scope label?
There are usually three numbers used to label a spotting scope. The first two represent the range of magnification a spotting scope can reach. The last one represents the size of the the front lens. So if you encounter a “15-45×60” model, then that means that the spotting scope has a 15-45x zoom magnification range and it has a 60mm in diameter front lens.
How is a spotting scope’s magnification?
Remember that spotting scopes are made to exceed the limitations conventional binoculars have. You can safely expect that they have higher magnification levels to let you view the scenery better than binoculars could serve you. However, you should consider that there are factors which can affect the performance of your spotting scope such as the atmosphere. There will be altitudes where your scope will work better and there will be times that it won’t look as good.
If you are definitely getting one, expect in line with price. A huge gap rests between low quality scopes and those considered premium grade ones. If you settle with a cheap ones, you can still get to use it in many applications; but if you are aiming for the performance of a high grade model, you will pay the price.
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