Gulf Off Shore Binocular Suggestions

Feb 20, 2016
116
Catalina 22 Palm Harbor
Finally named the Boat
1987 Cat 22 "New Design" " SeaClusion"
We live on a coastal passage to the Gulf of Mexico o North Florida's West Coast.
My wife has an expensive Nikon 7x42 that are crystal clear, but the mm size ( 42) of the device doesn't allow more than one subject in view
What is necessary in Marine Binoculars other than waterproof, floats and I'd assume something at least minimum 10 x 50 for wide open waters.
Suggestions are appreciated.
 
Nov 6, 2006
9,226
Hunter 34 Mandeville Louisiana
Usually, 8x50 is recommended because of the boat motion making it difficult to track targets. But some folks like higher.
 
May 24, 2004
6,799
CC 30 South Florida
A 10 magnification factor will render a narrower field of view. It will be much narrower than your wife's 7 X 42 as it will bring the object significantly much closer. Additionally a magnification factor of 10 is pushing the envelope in handheld stability on a moving deck. With a wider field of view it is easier to find things and the view is more stable. In reality the choice depends on what are you looking at mostly; do you want to read a boat's name and port of call or do you want to see an inlet before you approach. The size of the lens in millimeters merely indicates the amount of light it allows through. A 50mm lens will allow more light than a 42mm lens of the same quality for a slightly clearer view. My recommendation is simple keep your wife's 7 X 42 and purchase a 10 X 50, you will have use for both of them. Sometimes you see something over the horizon and the 10 X 50 will help you identify it but the 7 X 42 will be adequate for reading marker numbers and scooping passes.
 
Sep 30, 2013
3,293
1988 Catalina 22 central Florida
7x50 works well for me. I had to lobby Santa Claus for some Steiner Navigators which, for me, were pretty dang spendy. They do have the best optics I've ever looked through (not counting rifle scopes) but now I find myself longing for image stabilization. Sigh ... where does it all end??
 
Jun 14, 2010
1,728
TBD Looking for my next boat CT
For higher magnification there is nothing better than the Fuji Techno-Stabi 14x40 Fujinon Techno-Stabi Binocular but it will have a narrower field of view. Yes, pricey. Mine are 20 years old and still work great. (I paid around $1k in 2001, so they’ve been well worth the $50/year).
Your wife’s 7x42 will provide a wider field of view. 7x magnification is ideal for an unstabilized on the water use, because higher magnification increases the effect of movement and shake, making them less effective. For night use, a 50mm objective lens will generally provide a brighter image, for a given optics quality, but they’ll be heavier than the 42mm. When it comes to optics quality, you generally get what you pay for. Cheap glasses are lower optics quality, usually poorly made, and won’t stay aligned as well.
@Benny17441 gave good advice, above :plus:
 
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