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Introducing ROAMER (Ridiculously-Over-engineered Accurate Measure of Eye Relief)

If you don’t wear glasses, eyepiece eye relief is usually not a concern. Even if you do need corrective lenses for farsightedness or nearsightedness, our binoculars usually have enough range in their focusers to compensate for your correction, allowing you to observe with glasses off. But if your glasses are correcting for astigmatism, you’ll probably get sharper views by keeping your glasses on- in which case eye relief will be an important specification. If it’s too short, you won’t be able to see the entire field of view when wearing glasses. There’s always been a difference between binocular manufacturer’s eye relief specification and actual usable eye relief. Whether it’s space taken up by whatever style eyecup is utilized, or a recess from the top of the eyepiece to the actual lens, manufacturer’s eye relief specifications have always been exaggerated to some degree- until now. Introducing ROAMER (Ridiculously Over-engineered Accurate Measure of Eye Relief), which Oberwerk will now use to provide precise usable eye relief specifications for every Oberwerk binocular. Note that these new specifications will make Oberwerk binoculars appear to have less eye relief than binoculars from other brands. But that’s not the case- our eyepieces are no worse than others in this regard, and they’re often better- but at least you’ll have accurate information from now on.


6 Replies to “Introducing ROAMER (Ridiculously-Over-engineered Accurate Measure of Eye Relief)”

  1. Tristan Chambers says:

    This is great! I have an astigmatism. Conventionally the general rule has been minimum 16mm for eye glass wearers. Can you give some guidance on what a minimum ROAMER eye relief value should be? I first thought that none of the Ultra or Deluxe line products would work for me because I was looking for 16mm or greater eye relief. Now I’m wondering if for example an 11mm or 12mm ROAMER eye relief would be sufficient for eye glass wearers?


    1. Kevin Busarow says:

      Yes, I’ve found that 12mm is enough, even 11mm is do-able for some. The only model in our lineup that I can’t use with glasses is the 25×100 ED Ultra, which currently measures just 10mm usable eye relief. That model is being reworked to increase eye relief so it also can be used with glasses.

      1. Paul Milazzo says:

        When do you anticipate the updated eye relief version of the 25×100 ED Ultra will be available?

      2. Kevin Busarow says:

        Probably late-March (2023).

  2. Marty West says:

    I have a pair of Deluxe 10×50 that I use regularly with glasses for birding. I don’t have much astigmatism but I am rather nearsighted so removing my glasses while birding would be impractical. I have no trouble seeing the entire image with my glasses on with a usable eye relief of 13mm (formerly listed as 18mm).
    Eye relief required with glasses may vary with how deep you eye sockets are. I read somewhere that opticians adjust prescription calculations for Asian versus European customers because Europeans tend to have deeper set eyes.

  3. Mark Wallace says:

    Thank you so much for doing this! I wish all binocular companies had enough integrity to do this. I also wish that they would put more effort into designing eyecups that don’t waste eye relief.

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