Focus on Optics Planet OPMOD Best Buys
Dr. John Woods 07.02.14
In the world of hunting there can be no substitute for having quality optics at hand. I have found that out the hard way a number of times, but never again. So many quality optics are on the shelves these days that no self-respecting hunter of any game animal should be without a good set of binoculars and/or a high quality spotting scope. Having access to both is the Holy Grail of big game spotting and observation.
The bottom line issue with good optics these days is that the prices seemingly have gone out of the roof and blurred the options for wide ranging choices. With a tight economy still gripping our wallets and a considerable number of working class hunters having to stretch their recreational dollars even thinner, a high quality product at a reasonable price quickly becomes a premium piece of hunting gear. Enter OpticsPlanet’s own proprietary line of hunting optics marketed under the trade name of “OPMOD.”
The OPMOD 8×42 binocular is an 8 power glass that is no wimp. These are fully waterproof with a textured gripping surface, which is a necessary feature for wet weather or snow conditions when hunting. The glass is fully multi-coated. The unit has a center focus wheel, a 42mm objective lens, 5.25 light transmission factor, and is nitrogen filled with twist-up eyepieces. The binocular only weighs 1.5 pounds.
In field use these OPMOD binoculars are perfect for every outdoor activity from bird watching, football games, spying on neighbors, or counting points on antler racks at extended ranges. The grip surface remains soft and pliable under cold and wet conditions, which means they do not slip out of the hands like slick surface optics tend to do. The sides of the optical barrels are dimpled with tiny gripping points like fine gun checkering. The center focus wheel is finished the same way.
The eyepiece focus is simple and accurate. I wear bifocals, which are the bane of hunters trying to use riflescopes or binoculars. This is not an issue with these OPMOD binoculars. There are twist-up eyecups as well, but I found with my eyeglasses that they work ideally in the fully down position.
Out of the box these binoculars are packed in a nice, fully cushioned case with a very comfortable neoprene neck strap. The objective lenses have soft material covers that can be popped open or removed altogether. The eyepieces also have a one-piece cover that loops into the carry neck strap. These are neat features that are usually only offered on really top end very expensive optics. This package retails for a bit over $200, but I recommend you check their web site for often sales and promotions to get a better price. These binoculars are definitely a best buy considering the quality and utility.
Going up to more optical power via a spotting scope, the OPMOD 20-60x60mm Spotting Scope with tripod is just the trick.
Oddly, as an experienced western big game hunter and now a fanatic white-tailed deer hunter, I never did seriously consider toting and using a spotting scope until I spent time in two different outfitted elk hunting camps out west years ago that convinced me otherwise. These adept outfitters used spotting scopes set up outside the camp house area for hunters to scan, observe, and spot elk way up on the mountain meadows and along forest tree lines. The observational advantages of using the spotting scopes quickly became apparent. These days I use my OPMOD Spotting Scope on a regular basis.
This OPMOD scope is a variable power unit going from 20x to 60x power with a 60mm objective lens. This offers a wide open power range for wide viewing as well as up close and personal inspection of a big game animal and any rack he is carrying overhead. A spotting scope is perfect for really detailed evaluations of a set of antlers.
Specifications for this spotting scope include all the essential features needed for long range game observations. The unit is water resistant, light weight at 2.2KG, offers a powerful zoom range, 4mm-1.3mm exit pupil distance, and an included tripod, which is ideal for a shooting range bench, working off a vehicle hood, or placing it atop a stand up photography tripod.
The eyepiece is angled, making it easier to use in the field especially on a tripod since the user can simply bend over to view through the scope. Both lenses have soft rubberized protective covers, but they are not attached. The 20-60x power adjustment has a locking ring so the power setting can be dialed in and set fast. There is a large, easy to manipulate focus knob on the side of the scope barrel. The eyepiece lens also has a twist out focus feature.
Another nice feature is the lock screw that allows the tripod mounting platform to be rotated around the circumference of the scope for different use applications. The exterior surfaces of the scope are fixed with a soft, rubber-like material offering a firm grip. The optical quality is exceptional.
Again, check their web site for current pricing and further detailed information on the spotting scope as well as other OpticsPlanet optical offerings. Remember the “Best Buy” part.