Great Innovations in Optics The best new features found on this year’s crop of scopes, binoculars, and more. By Outdoor Life Online Editor May 30, 2007 Uncategorized Outdoor Life Online Editor SHARE Traditional variable-power riflescopes have had either three-to-one (as in 3″”9X) or four-to-one (as in 2.5″”10X) zoom ratios. Now, Swarovski has greatly increased the versatility of power changing with the six-to-one zoom ratio of its new 30mm Z6 series of riflescopes, which are available in 1″”6×24, 1.7″”10×42 and 2″”12×50 models. Outdoor Life Online Editor Integral Windage and Elevation Caps Anyone who has left windage and elevation turret caps at a shooting range or otherwise lost them in the field will greatly appreciate Leupold's new SpeeDial Adjustment System, which incorporates the caps into the adjustment dials. In other words, it's impossible to lose them. Hydrophobic Lens Coatings First introduced in sport optics by Bushnell in 1999 under the brand RainGuard, hydrophobic (water-repellent) coatings of various types are now coming into wide use throughout the optics industry. Examples of such coatings include Sightron's Climate Control, Simmons's HydroShield, Steiner's Nano and Zeiss's LotuTec. Though not easily detected in fair-weather conditions, hydrophobic coatings work amazingly well at repelling not only water, but also oil and grease, which either runs or wipes off easily. Ammunition-Specific Bullet-Drop-Compensating Reticles This clever idea involves using Cabela's extra-long (4.5- to 5.3-inch) eye relief Lever-Action Riflescope, with its special BDC reticles, in conjunction with Hornady Lever Evolution ammunition. The 3""9×40 scopes are available with three different built-in bullet-drop-compensating reticles, calibrated for .30/30 Win., .444 Marlin and .45/70 Government ammunition, respectively. If these scopes sell well, you can expect to see more like them in the years to come. Digiscoping Made Easier The Zeiss Camera-Eyepiece DC4 makes taking high-quality telephoto pictures through a spotting scope much easier than we ever thought possible. With the scope mounted on a solid tripod, you look through the eyepiece as you normally would, focus on the object to be photographed and press the shutter button on an infrared remote control. Presto! You've got a sharp digital photo of exactly what you saw through the eyepiece. The best new features found on this year’s crop of scopes, binoculars, and more. Hunting and Fishing Photos MORE TO READ RELATED The Braggin’ Board – West These Western Anglers Like Their Fish Big READ NOW RELATED Outdoorsman at the Helm? Bush's choice for Fish and Wildlife Service is... RELATED Out of Thin Air In bush planes, anything can happen.