By Eric Christensen
My deep love for spending time in the outdoors has become part of my life and is now being passed down to my children. Watching them stare at a beautiful creature walking around a mountain meadow is very fulfilling as a parent. It’s a bond that brings us closer together, for a lifetime of memories. And with today’s technology, we can share images and video with friends and family like never before.
American Technology Network or ATN, is bringing some very cool tech to the optical world. Their BinoX-HD is rich and overflowing with technology. They are very lightweight, which surprised me when you think of all that is going on inside of them. The BinoX-HD might seem overwhelming at first use, but like any electronic device, gets easier to use once you’ve broken ground. Their eye cups slide horizontally to fit a variety of users and the diopters are easy to focus (Make sure they are adjusted correctly for your eyes or the image will not appear correctly inside the housing). Also, the interface is simple to scroll between menu options. The digital zoom works great to draw closer to your image.
One aspect the BinoX-HD brings to the table is a free app you can use with the system. After you download and sync it, you can let others view your image through a Wi-Fi connection. Having small children as I do and trying to get them to see an animal through magnified optics takes loads of time. We had a blast on our last trip to the mountain looking at elk. My boys could watch my phone and see the exact image I was looking at. The BinoX-HD will also allow you to record the image on a micro SD card, so you can share on social media platforms and keep them for later use. I also used them on my daughters last softball game. It seemed to flow better as I was recording her playing rather than trying to watch a small LCD screen on my camcorder.
One of the coolest features that the BinoX-HD comes with is night vision. I fully expected the image to be blurred out or only work with at least a little light. I was blown away with how well the night vision capability worked. We went on a scout camping trip where I let several 14-year-olds try their hand with the night vision. It was awesome. It was a pitch black night with no moon and the images were clear and rich. The boys experimented with them late into the night, capturing all kinds of images.
You can also capture still images rather than just recording in full HD. The image stabilizer helped with hand-shake when zoomed in tight, making for better video. Users can also geotag and the onboard electronic compass was handy to know what direction we were looking. The BinoX-HD made me a believer in Smart Optics!