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Monthly Archives: June 2008

30 Jun

June is almost over and no sign of the new Nikon EDG binocular. We had been told that it would be sometime in June for this new super binocular to become available, give or take. I can tell you that the 7×42 Nikon EDG prototype I tried and the 10×42 EDG prototype that our own Steve Ledin tried were as good as any premium binocular I have ever had in my hands. My next binocular could very well be the Nikon 8×32 EDG. Will definitely blog when I can get my hot little hands on one. This is one binocular …

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26 Jun

Approaching the dark of the moon and, for an astronomer, that’s good news. Weather has kept my astronomy binocular indoors these last few weeks, so I anxiously watch the weather report and check my skies every time I get up at night. The Nikon 10×70 sits on the tripod, just waiting for some action. For me, it’s less than a two minute drill to be out on the patio observing with my binocular. It’s one of the things I most appreciate about binocular astronomy. No equipment hassles or set up time. Just grab the binocular and go.…

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25 Jun

Nocturnal birding? If you’ve never done this before, you are missing some great opportunities to add birds to your yearly or monthly bird list, if you keep such things. Even if you don’t, it’s a thrill to hear birds that you seldom, if ever, see by day. That’s right; nocturnal birding is mostly by ear – no binocular needed. I always carry one, though. Now and then, especially on a moonlit night, you might get to see one of these night singers or callers in the binocular. As for locations, just check for the preferred habitat for the nocturnal bird …

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24 Jun

Been tough getting an Indigo Bunting in my binocular, this year, even in places I used to see them. Not sure the reason, but I have been carrying my binocular more than usual this time of year, in the hopes that I can still add one to my birding year list. Seems to be one or two bird species every year that escape my list and this year it is the Indigo. Best chance to see this bird will now be later, during migration. Of course, I could ride my bicycle out into new areas and do some heavy scouting …

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23 Jun

Summertime, summertime! For birders, summer is something of a mixed blessing. Migration is over, for the most part, so in terms of variety, we’re down to resident nesting birds. Some birders see that as a negative, but I see it as a positive. I have a couple of bluebird boxes and one spectacular martin house along my bike route, all well in range of my 8x compact binocular. Also have an Oriole nest in progress just down the street. Nothing beats a pleasant summer afternoon with a good binocular and watching these birds raise their young.…

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18 Jun

Had a customer ask if we had any Apogee right angle binoculars left to sell. Had to tell her, no, unfortunately, since Apogee is no longer in business and our remaining stock on Apogee binoculars is sold out. I can understand why she wants a right angle binocular, given the many years I’ve spent behind an astronomy binocular, but, in my opinion, a better solution is a parallelogram mount. Unfortunately, a good one is hard to find (we don’t offer one). The ones I’ve used were custom made and a marvel to use. Kind of hard to go back to …

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16 Jun

As we approach full moon, this week, I am reminded that many beginners with telescopes and binoculars tend to think full moon is the time to do some lunar astronomy. Full moon is actually the worst phase for astronomy, as most of the detail is lost in the glare. Moon filters do help, but serious lunar astronomers wait for a partially lit moon and observe at the edge of the shadow where the lighted and dark meet. This is the area of best contrast and most detail. Next week, not this week, will be a better week. I will have …

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12 Jun

I will never vote for any presidential candidate: … who uses zoom binoculars … who shops for a roof prism at a home improvement store … who gets the words astrology and astronomy mixed up … who picks up a binocular and uses it backwards … who thinks you are supposed to see two circles when looking through a binocular, just like in the movies … who thinks eye relief is a medicine … who has ever been intentionally mean or hurtful to a binocular, even a zoom.

Am I being too picky, here?…

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11 Jun

Didn’t have the opportunity to use my larger birding binoculars during this spring migration,given all my bicycling, but can’t say I missed full size binoculars this spring. My compact binoculars did just fine and were a much better choice for birding from my bicycle. In fact, I can’t think of a single instance where I felt one of my premium compact binocular let me down, even deep in the woods for warblers. I would still recommend a full-size binocular for beginning birders, but a good compact binocular, in the hands of an experienced birder, can be a serious birding tool.…

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10 Jun

Summer astronomy for me centers on the summer traingle, that trio of bright stars – Vega, Altair and Deneb. Fortunately, these stellar beauties are siutuated, perfectly, from my apartment patio on summer nights and I spend many evenings with the binocular enjoying all the open clusters and double stars in the area. If you are new to binocular astronomy, this is a great time to get out that binocular and put it to use. Sure, it helps to have an astronomy binocular, but any binocular, even a compact binocular, will show you a wealth of stars. Get out and take …

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