No matter what animal you are hunting, a spotting scope is a good tool to have. It’s much easier to use than lugging around a pair of binoculars. Hunters need optical enhancements to perform this sport to the best of their ability. You can use a spotting scope for bird watching, tracking, and similar scenarios. When choosing the best spotting scope, there are different factors and additional features that you need to consider. We are here to help you on your journey of choosing the best spotting scope for your exact needs.
Factors to consider to choose the best spotting scope
An optical scope is used to take a closer look at objects that are far away. A great tool to use. Price is the first factor to consider. Once you’ve established your price range, you can see what features are offered in that range. The goal is to get the best possible value for your money. You obviously want the best deal. It’s true, the more money you spend, the more features you get. Usually, the higher the price value, the better the overall optics. Although, even if you choose a cheaper scope, it does not necessarily mean that it is bad. It will do what it is designed to do, which is see distant objects up close. Remember, more money spent means better features and probably a clearer picture. Now let’s dig in and review all the options you should deliberate about when choosing a viewer. Not just any spyglass, the best one for you.
First, decide what you want the body style to be. Of course, you want a good looking outfit, but in addition to the overall good looks. What shape do you prefer? A straight viewfinder or an angled viewfinder? In general, it is based on your personal preference. There are pros and cons to each style.
If more than one person will be using the scope once you’ve set it up, an angled scope is the best option. Simply lower your eye toward the eyepiece to look through it. An angled spotting scope is best when looking at objects from different heights or from a seated position in a vehicle or even looking through a window.
Beginners tend to prefer a straight scope as it is easier to find or spot the object you are looking for.
The lens of straight scopes also gets less dirty than the lens of an angled scope. The eye and eyepiece are parallel in a straight scope. If you are going to observe or look at your object from a tree or from a standing position, then a straight scope is the best option.
The higher the magnification, the more detail you can clearly see in your desired object. However, remember that the larger the object appears to be, the lower the quality.
To fully understand magnifying power, it’s best to understand what the number means. If your scope has a magnifying power of 6ox. It simply means that if you are looking through your scope at maximum 6ox magnification, the object appears to be 60 times closer than if you were looking at it without a scope.
The highest possible magnification is essential in choosing the best spotting scope for bird watching. Typically the highest magnification power available in a 6ox scope.
Being able to zoom in on your target and see it up close and personal is a great feature. It is important to note that you can zoom in and out.
Weather conditions also play a role in how clearly you can see your object. If it is raining or cloudy when you look through your telescope, the image will not be as clear as if you were looking at the object in dry, sunny weather.
Humidity, fog, and light exposure all play a role in the clarity and amount of detail you’ll see in your intended target.
Objective lens quality
The size of your objective lens plays a big role in the price of your spotting scope. The larger the objective lens, the higher the price. If you want the best spotting scope for the money, then it’s better to choose lens quality over lens size, which is the right factor to consider anyway. The quality of the lens is the first factor to consider when looking at what size lens you can afford. As mentioned, a larger scope is obviously more money.
A large lens that has poor quality glass will result in a worse image than a smaller lens made with high quality glass.
Although, a large lens of the highest quality will give you the best possible image. If money isn’t an issue, that’s what you want to buy.
Lens coating is another important factor when choosing the best scope. There are three options for lens coating: fully coated, multi-coated, and fully multi-coated. Each lens coating affects the way light is transmitted to the lens, greatly affecting the image you’re viewing. Viewing quality depends on which coating lens you choose for the viewfinder you have.
A top of the line, best optical viewfinder will have a fully multi-coated lens. This will give you the best possible viewing potential.
Eye relief distance
Simply, this is the distance between the eyepiece of the scope and the observer’s eye without losing any of his field of vision.
Basically, the distance that the viewer can keep the scope away from their face while still being able to clearly see the entire range of vision. Higher quality scopes have better eye relief. Which means your eye can be further from the eyepiece of the telescope and still keep the image in your field of view. As lesser quality made scopes will require you to have your eye right up against the eyepiece of the scope to keep the object in your field of view.
People who wear glasses should have a high quality scope to have a better eye relief distance. It’s harder for them to see in general. A person who wears glasses wants to have a large field of view without having to press their glasses firmly against the eyepiece.
As a general rule, people with glasses need at least 14mm between their eyes to see the entire field of vision. A person who wears extremely thick glasses will probably require a bit more distance.
Prism type and quality
Each and every spotting scope has small prisms inside that flip the image into the correct position for normal viewing. There are two categories of prisms that scopes fall into, the roof prism and the Porro prism. There is no right or wrong prism design to choose from. Both have advantages and disadvantages. Choose the prism design that best suits your needs to provide the best spotting scope for you.
The image from a roof prism is not as sharp as that from a Porro prism. This is because the prisms are directly aligned with each other. Although the overall design is more compact and slimmer, making it a more beautiful design. You will quickly be able to select the viewer that contains the roof prisms. Look at the structure; the large lens will be perfectly aligned with each other. A great benefit of the roof prism is that the scope will be very portable, ideal for a traveler, a roof prism scope has fewer parts than a Porro prism spotting scope.
A Porro prism scope can be easily identified because its lenses are crooked. The Porro prism telescope is highly efficient and is the least expensive. Images are displayed much more clearly. A Porro prism scope is the best scope for target shooting or any other outdoor activity.
Spotting scopes that are made of the highest quality usually have detachable eyepieces. Since the eyepiece is detachable, the price of the eyepiece is most likely not included in the price of the scope. This allows the buyer to choose the perfect eyepiece to ensure they get the best spotting scope.
A higher end scope will have a detachable eyepiece with different options such as being able to change the magnification as you can on a zoom eyepiece. A zoom eyepiece is the best option when choosing the best general scope for hunting. It allows you to zoom in on your desired target and can give you a very clear and sharp image that many hunters prefer. Not only is the image quality excellent, but the eye relief distance is also exceptional. If you remember correctly, this would be a great option for hunters who wear glasses. Don’t forget to take the best tactical knife for your hunting trip.
Close focus is the closest possible area or object that you can see clearly or sharply focus on when using the spotting scope. If you’re trying to see birds or animals at a very close distance, a pair of binoculars might be a better option than a scope. The vast majority of scopes have a minimum close focus of 20 feet. That is why it is recommended to use a different tool if you need to see an object closer.
Select the correct tripod to match the scope
A tripod goes hand in hand with a viewfinder. You need a structure to support and keep your vantage point stable while you observe your intended target. There is no need for a special tripod. You simply need to select a tripod that correctly matches your scope. It’s simple. A heavy scope requires a heavy, stable and sturdy tripod. A lighter scope requires a lighter tripod.
If you take your spotting scope with you while you travel, it is better to buy a lighter tripod and a lighter spotting scope.
If you buy a top of the line and expensive spotting scope. You don’t want to buy a cheap flimsy tripod to hold it up. Make sure the compatibility makes sense.
What kind of camera adapter will be included?
Technology has come a long way. The vast majority of spotting scopes come with a camera adapter. This allows you to take pictures of what object you are viewing. Taking pictures of the target you are viewing through your scope is called “digiscoping.” You must have a scope that is compatible with the camera adapter you want to use.
Basically digiscoping is taking a photo of the target with your scope instead of a camera lens. Think about using the magnifying power of the spotting lens, the image would be pristine. There’s no need to wonder why people would want to try digiscoping for themselves. Especially when it comes to bird watching or wildlife viewing.
Advantages of waterproofing and fog
Waterproofing and fog protection will keep your visor in pristine condition for longer. This additional feature protects the visor from sudden changes in the weather. For example, if you are using your spyglass and it starts to rain heavily. If your visor is waterproof or fogproof, the seals will keep out moisture as well as other debris that could quickly ruin or damage your visor. This is why the advantages work together to keep your telescope looking and operating like new.
There are many factors to consider when choosing the best spotting scope. Some additional features are necessary, while others, like getting a scope that is waterproof, is not something that is necessary. Although, every additional feature is a definite plus. It’s all about price and personal preference. Start with the shape or type of reach you want, set your price limit, and choose other options from there. It is a fact that to get the best spotting scope with the most features, you have to be willing to spend money. When it comes to buying a spotting scope, you get exactly what you paid for.