Binoculars History

How it all began

The design of binoculars as we know them today was invented more than 100 years ago. By combining two monocular telescopes, ZEISS brought binoculars to market that delivered a natural image with increased three-dimensional perception. ZEISS has been using telescopic lenses since 1954 to enable a more compact design. These intentions culminated in 1969 with the introduction of pocket binoculars, the ZEISS 8x20, which could be folded small enough to fit into a pocket.

Another high point was when the 20x60 came on the market in 1990 with its revolutionary image stabilization. The Victory® FL introduced in 2004 reduced color aberrations as never before thanks to fluoride in the lenses, and in 2012 the Victory® HT offered light transmission of more than 95% for the first time ever.

1894

Prism binoculars with a greater distance between the objective lenses improve the imaging quality due to increased field depth.

1897

Moritz Carl Hensoldt introduces the world’s first binoculars with roof prisms – the Penta 7x29 Model A.

1898

Tin-can telescope 

1917

Introduction of wide-angle eyepieces with a binocular design.

1923

Hand-held telescope with adjustable 4–20x magnification. 

1935

Invention of the anti-reflective T-coating by Alexander Smakula increases the light transmission of binoculars by 50%.

1954

The use of teleobjective lenses allows for more compact designs.

1964

Dialyt binoculars unveiled with direct-vision prism-erecting system based on the Schmidt design. The light path is strongly “coiled,” resulting in small, slim binoculars.

1969

Revolutionary innovation for the binoculars market by introducing the ZEISS pocket binoculars (8x20). Biaxial double joint allows binoculars to be folded up to fit in a pocket; use of glass- fiber-reinforced plastic for the housing reduces the weight of the binoculars to 135 g.

1988

P-coating from ZEISS – a phase-correcting coating for the roof surfaces of roof prisms – eliminates interference effects caused by phase shifts in the image erection process. This increases the quality by improving the contrast and resolution.

1990

With the 20x60 S, ZEISS is the world’s first manufacturer to introduce binoculars with mechanical image stabilization. This technology compensates for user hand tremor and allows for successful freehand observation at 20x magnification.

2000

Launch of the Victory 8/10x40 and 8/10x56 binoculars.

2001

Spotting scopes and interchangeable eyepieces provide birdwatchers with new options.

2003

Victory Conquest 8/10x30 and 12/15x45 binoculars introduced.

2004

Victory FL models now incorporate fluoride glass in binoculars for the first time, facilitating unprecedented sharp focus and eliminating color fringes.

2006

LotuTec coating is added.

2008

Victory RF binoculars and monoculars are equipped with a fully integrated laser rangefinder and a ballistic program that indicates the bullet drop.

2010

The PhotoScope is a high-quality spotting scope with 15–45x magnification and an integrated 7-megapixel camera for simultaneous observation and photography. It enabled simultaneous observation and photography.

2012

CONQUEST HD (High Definition) 8/10x42 binoculars with ED (Extralow Dispersion) glass.

2012

VICTORY HT (High Transmission) binoculars with unparalleled light transmission.