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|PMY Tested: Steiner 7x50 Binoculars — July 2002|
Just as with sunglasses and prescription specs, there can be large price discrepancies for binoculars. It all hinges on what you're looking to do with them. Do you want night vision? Or maybe you fancy those NASA-grade binoculars that can peek around the curved Earth until you see the back of your head.
Now you won't exactly see around the globe with Steiner's 7x50 Marine binoculars, but they are a solid and moderately priced option ($199). I found the 7x50 to be comfortable to use for long periods of time, as its lightweight (37 ounces) and the rubber armor make for a soft, easy grip. The 22mm of eye relief helps reduce strain on the peepers. Of course, the binoculars are designed for the marine environment, with a magnesium fluoride coating making them resistant to scratching from salt spray, so don't sweat it if they get wet. In addition, the rubber armor makes the body of the binoculars waterproof. Ours proved durable throughout our three-month test period.
I found the 7x50 to work equally well in both bright daylight and near dusk. Steiner says the enhanced visibility in low light is accomplished through the use of special coatings on the lenses. In addition to the comfort offered during use, the 7x50 Marine provided me with a wide field of view. Although I didn't measure to the inch, Steiner claims that the field of view is 354 feet at 1,000 yards. And at that distance, my targets were clear to my normally eyeglass-enhanced vision. Adjusting to see targets was easy with a slight twist of the eyepieces.
The 7x50 Marine binoculars are available through most boating accessory retailers and come with a ten-year limited warranty.
Pioneer Research Phone: (800) 257-7742. Fax: (856) 866-8615. www.steiner-binoculars.com.
This article originally appeared in the January 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.