Nikon Binoculars

Nikon Waterproof Binoculars

Binoculars consist of numerous air to glass surfaces with each individual surface contributing to the loss of light. Coated lenses help prevent the loss of light with one or more of the surfaces being covered with one or more layers of anti-reflective coating. Never buy binoculars with uncoated lenses, the lack of coating means that around 50% of light could be lost.

Optics with lens coatings used to come with a hefty price tag but now most binoculars come with lens coatings in one form or another and top quality fully multi-coated lens binoculars are often within the price range of many users.

There are basically four grades of coated lense binoculars although some manufacturers have developed their own, exclusive, high quality coatings which offer greater durability and further improved light transmission with other added advantages:

• Coated lense binoculars means that one or more surfaces are covered with one layer of anti-reflective coating. If only one or a limited number of air to glass surfaces are covered such binoculars will provide you little more light transmission than binoculars with no lens coatings.

• If the lenses are fully coated it means that air to glass surfaces are covered with one layer of anti-reflective coating.

• Multi-coated lenses means that one or more air to glass surfaces are covered with multiple layers of anti-reflective coating. You have to be careful as just one surface could be coated!

• Fully multi-coated lense binoculars are the best that you can buy. All air to glass surfaces are covered in multiple layers of anti reflective coating.

Fully coated lenses can increase light transmission from 50% to around 80 - 85% which is now the norm for low cost optics. If you want something a bit more special that will increase light transmission to 95% or above then you want to go for fully multi coated lense binoculars and, for extra durability and advance quality viewing, take a look at the exclusive coatings offered by some of the top manufacturers. Bushnell Elite come with Bushnell's exclusive XTR technology (60 layers of coatings on each prism) which delivers 99.73% light transmission per lens.

The difference between fully coated lense binoculars and fully multi-coated might not sound that great but once you have owned binoculars with the best quality optics and coatings you'll never look back. The light transmission, resolution and clarity of top quality lenses is amazing and the enhanced viewing generally makes the higher price tag well worth it.

A few fully multi coated lense binoculars are Bushnell Elite, Bushnell Legend, Bushnell Natureview, Pentax DCF SP / XP and HR II, Pentax PCF, Nikon HG L DCF and Olympus EXPS I Series Binoculars.

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I am looking to buy Nikon 8x40 Binoculars- #7216. Is this a good pair of binoculars to buy? (for star gazing)?

Binoculars can be *wonderful* for star-gazing! They bring out the star fields and nebulae very well. It is easy to see many globular clusters as well as many open clusters using them. In fact, binoculars are the best thing for some objects, like comets. Using a telescope on a large comet will cut out a lot of interesting stuff.

An 8x40 pair of binoculars is fairly good, but for astronomy, it is usually better to go for at least 50mm objective lenses. These are what collect the light. It turns out that many astronomical objects are fairly large in the sky, bu they are *dim*. So what is really needed isn't magnification, it's light gathering ability.

I would recommend a pair of either 7x50 or 10x50 binoculars with BAK40 porro prisms and fully multi-coated. The multi-coating is pretty important as it lets more light in.

One other consideration is that larger objective lenses tend to make the binoculars weigh more, which makes them harder to hold for long periods of time. If you have anything that weighs more than about 2 pounds, you might want to get a camera mount and adapter.

Check out Meade, Celestron, and Orion Telescopes for good astronomical binoculars.

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