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Old 02-06-2010, 18:16   #1
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Binoculars with Compass

I am looking for recommendations for brands of binoculars with a compass in them. I am definitely not looking to spend a million dollars on these things, just looking for a dependable pair of binocs.
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Old 02-06-2010, 18:18   #2
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Get the WM Tahiti binos. They're a good deal when on sale, which is about always.
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Old 02-06-2010, 19:38   #3
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I have these and think they're great:

Binoculars - Helmsman 7x50C Binocular with Compass, Marine Equipment and Nautical Binoculars

(Scroll way down. For some reason there's a lot of blank white space before you get to the good stuff.)

I especially like the warranty:

"If the Helmsman becomes damaged within the first three years of use —*even through neglect or abuse*— Captain’s Nautical Supplies will replace it with a new instrument for $50.00,*much less that the cost of a minimal repair on*most other marine binoculars."

In addition to their own "Captain's" brand, they also have all the standards. If you're in the area (Seattle), it's a fun place to spend an hour or two, browsing.

Rebecca
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Old 02-06-2010, 19:58   #4
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I have the bino's with compass but find that it's much easier to use a good hand bearing compass. If you do the binocs with compass thing though, I agree that the Tahiti's are a good way to go. I think I paid $100 for mine.

Mike
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:07   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unbusted67 View Post
I am looking for recommendations for brands of binoculars with a compass in them. I am definitely not looking to spend a million dollars on these things, just looking for a dependable pair of binocs.

Ours are Nikon and quite affordable - I think $350 we paid in Singapore. Only 200 more than a hand bearing compass. We use them ALL the time and they are truly wonderful! We now have His & Her binos, however only one has the compass inside. We would love His&Her compass binos then its so easy to say look at that dolphin at 240...
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Old 03-06-2010, 13:38   #6
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Pay attention to the damping of the compass.

I have 7x50 Tasco binoculars with a compass that's useless in a seaway because it keeps swinging on at least 10 deg with each wave. I bought them 10 years ago for about $500. I would'nt recommend this product, even if the optics are really clear.

Alain
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Old 03-06-2010, 14:28   #7
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Practical Sailor rated the Fujinon Polaris as the best with the Steiner a close second. The light gathering capabilities of the Fujinon's are quite remarkable at night and the Compass is quite stable even in a rough seaway. We have now had our set for 20+ years carried, in a cockpit mount near the helm on two yachts from California to Florida and they are virtually as good as new.

FWIW...
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Old 03-06-2010, 15:32   #8
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I have the Fujinon's. They have great optics, a well damped compass, are waterproof, don't seem to fog, and are armored. The main optics seem very resistant to salt and salt water. The Fuji's also have a compass light as well as vertical height gauge for determining distance off, height of objects, or other navigation measurements.
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Old 03-06-2010, 15:47   #9
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the $500 that the Fujis cost might as well be a million.
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Old 04-06-2010, 06:45   #10
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How much do you expect to spend? $500 is not much for a really good pair of binoculars. Cheaper binoculars are going to be... well, cheaper.

The Tahiti binocs from West Marine are on sale for $200 right now. They won't be as good as the Fujis, but they are decent binoculars for the price. Spend any less than that and you are going to have to seriously compromise on the quality.
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Old 04-06-2010, 09:47   #11
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Yes about 150-200 I just don't have it in the budget. This is the last real purchase we have before I call the provisioning/refit done and I am just plain old at the end of my budget!
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Old 04-06-2010, 10:14   #12
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I paid $400 for the Fuji's in 1992. 18+ years later they're still the go-to binoculars on the bridge. That's $22/year and going down.

Anyone want to show me a pair of cheap binoculars that're 18+ years old, have 100000 miles on them, and still work as good as the day they came out of the box?
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Old 04-06-2010, 10:45   #13
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I paid $400 for the Fuji's in 1992. 18+ years later they're still the go-to binoculars on the bridge. That's $22/year and going down.

Anyone want to show me a pair of cheap binoculars that're 18+ years old, have 100000 miles on them, and still work as good as the day they came out of the box?
I hear you, I really do and I would love to get them I just don't have it in my budget.

That is one of the things that sometimes bums me out about this site is the occasional intolerance and peer pressure regarding one's spending limits.

I work with what I've got and I just try to make it happen. Would it be more economical to just buy a hand bearing compass and a cheap pair of regular binocs?
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Old 04-06-2010, 11:04   #14
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We bought our Fujinon's at the West Marine outlet in Long Beach Ca in February 1987 for just about $500 (including the compass illuminator and flotation strap) That's about $1.79 per month since we bougth them. Since we like to be able to put more than one set of eyes on a target, we have also carried less costly units including those made for WM. Invariably the less costly units fail--fog up, become water logged, go out of alignment or what have you and need replacement. We're now on either our 4th or 5th set. It would have been less costly to have purchased a second pair of Fujinon's (absent the compass).

An alternative to the Polaris is the Mariner. See http://www.binoculars.com/binoculars...uswcompass.cfm

Not quite as good as the Polaris but almost.

FWIW...
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Old 04-06-2010, 11:15   #15
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We're now on either our 4th or 5th set. It would have been less costly to have purchased a second pair of Fujinon's (absent the compass).
Buy now, pay later! (at a higher cost)
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