Wednesday, May 26, 2010

compact binocular questions

From Julia:

Q: I am in the market for a pair of compact binoculars. I do not use glasses. My sister has a pair of Minox BV10X25 BRW. I have to hold her binoculars away from my eyes in order to have the lenses at the proper distance. Instead of being up in the eye socket like my Leitz 10X40's are, the compact binocs are barely touching my eyebrows.
Is this a question of eye relief? If so, what value of eye relief do I need in order to have the eye cups on the compact binocs closer to my eyes. I find the compacts difficult to use if they do not rest in my eye sockets. Light comes in from the side, and it is difficult to hold them at the right distance.

A: It sounds like the problem you are experiencing has to do with correct use of the binocular eyecups. Without eyeglasses on, you want to be sure the eyecups on the binoculars are fully extended, which will allow you to put the binoculars against your face without getting the lenses too close to your eyes.
With the eye-cups fully extended on any binocular, they should prevent your eyes from getting too close to the lenses, regardless of the stated eye relief. A binocular's eye relief is going to be more significant for people who do wear eyeglasses. Eyeglass wearers will want at least 15mm of eye relief.

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