Imagine the scene: birds are tweeting, the sun is shining, there’s a cool breeze. You hold up your binoculars and focus them in on the tree where you’re pretty sure the last bird on your Exotic Bird Bingo Card is nesting… and you can’t see it because the image is shaking too much.
Even if bird-watching isn’t on your interest list, you’ll probably be familiar with the common problems that come with using binoculars. The image blurs at the edges or distorts, there’s glare from light reflecting on the lens and if you’ve managed to find a pair with a high magnification, you might have no alternative than to use a tripod to avoid the image shaking.
Canon’s brand has long been synonymous with industry-leading digital cameras, and they have taken their image stabilising technology and adapted it to engineer a range of high-quality binoculars. Image shake can usually be tolerated up to a magnification of 7x, but if you want to look further afield, Canon’s computer-assisted lens design and Image Stabiliser technology allow users to see shake-free images at magnifications of up to 18x. This is due to the internal vertical and horizontal gyros that detect motion in any direction. Along with the two sensors and microprocessor, the angle of incoming light is altered so that the image always appears steady.
The IS (image stabiliser) series have double field flatteners on their lenses which reduce the curvature of field – basically stopping the image looking like you’re looking through a fish bowl. This is also good news for people who wear glasses because they’ll be able to use the binoculars without having any blurring at the periphery of image.
Canon can now add to their list of accomplishments the world’s smallest and lightest binoculars that have Image Stabilisation Technology. The 8 x 25 IS binoculars are lightweight, compact and have a battery that allows for six hours of continuous use – perfect for someone just starting out or looking for a pair of binoculars to use every now and then.
But if you’re looking for something more powerful than that, Canon have the world’s first pair of waterproof binoculars that have image stabilising technology: the 10x 42L IS WP. They have a rubber coating which makes them easier to grip and cushions against shocks – perfect for activities on the water. The lenses have a metallic coating which prevents fogging, and a super spectra coating which stops light from reflecting back and producing flares or ghost images.
Lastly, if you’re looking to buy a pair but are wondering what the numbers refer to, here’s some clarification. The first number refers to how powerful the magnification is, so the higher the number, the closer the object will appear. E.g. If the object is 1000m away, with the 10 x 42L pair of binoculars, the object will only appear to be 100m away. The second number refers to the diameter of the front lens; this means that the larger the diameter, the more light is being let in which allows for a brighter image. The wide 42mm objective lens means that even in low light, you’ll be receiving a really bright image.
Whether it’s stargazing, boating, train-spotting, spotting wildlife when you’re out four-wheel driving, or just trying to count the craters on the moon, find the right pair of image-stabilising binoculars for your needs and visit Canon’s website HERE.