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Old 04-02-2008
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Anything with much more magnification than 7 will be too jittery, it's too hard to hold them steady enough on a moving boat to keep an image stable enough to see. Unless they are image stabilized. But then you get into a more complex system, with batteries. You know what complex systems with batteries do when you need them most, right?

you need the 50 for the light gathering, so you can see things in low light conditions. You need the coated lenses to cut haze and give you a clear image. You don't really need the compass in the binoculars. Binocs are to identify what you are looking at or for.

My vote is for good optics, ruggedness, and simplicity. No extra moving parts. No electronics to go bad. No batteries to worry about. If I had a pair of the electric, compass included, image stabilized binocs, I think I would still have a set of waterproof 7x50s as a backup. And I know which ones would most likely end up in the life raft with me.

I use Fujinon, rubber armored, 7x50s. But any decent optics manufacturer will have something as good.
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