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Have your towel? Good, then there's no need to panic.

What's that you say? Oh dear, you forgot your towel? Well, then - Vogon poetry for you!

While we wait for Prostetnic Vogon Jeltz of the Galactic Hyperspace Planning Council to come to the microphone, may we suggest any of these solutions to whatever problems may be ailing you:

  • Having trouble ordering?
    We're more than happy to walk you through your online order or to take your order over the phone.

    Just call Ground Control at (800) 228-8252 during business hours. We're available Monday through Saturday between the hours of 10am and 5:30pm, and Sunday from 10am to 5pm. (All times US-Pacific.) The only days we close are Thanksgiving and Christmas.

  • Want to return an order?
    We're happy to take returns within 30 days of when you received the item(s) from us. Please call Ground Control at (800) 228-8252 to get a pre-authorization for the return.

    We do not retain your credit card information after you place your order, so we will get that information when you call in for the pre-authorization and will issue the refund when the items are returned to us.

    You'll need to repack the items securely, include any and all product packaging, instructions, warranty cards, extra parts, etc. that came with the item and ship it back to us. If any of these extras/accessories are missing, or if the item is dirty or damaged when returned to us, we may need to issue a partial refund to cover the costs of repair or replacement. We handle each return on a case-by-case basis, so call ahead for full instructions.

  • Have a question about a product? Not sure how something works?
    Go ahead and send us an email using the form on the Contact Us page. We'll get back to you as soon as we can.
For all other questions, check out our Guide to the Galaxy below. We've broken it down into helpful cross-referenced sections just for you!

Questions about Using this Site/Placing an Order
Click on any of the questions below to reveal/hide the answer.
Why should I buy from Out of This World?
Since 1988 Out of This World has had a brick-and-mortar store where we interface with the public daily - we're not some fly-by-night pick-and-ship warehouse. We're a one-of-a-kind store with a wide variety of educational products, toys, games, brainy puzzles and science kits - in addition to being the leading optics retailer in Central and Northern California. While that may seem like an odd combination, it's been working for us for over 25 years!

We have customers who come back to Mendocino every year (some since they were children) to visit with us and shop in our store. Many of our customers are now bringing their children to shop from our assortment of fun and exciting products.

In addition, we manually inspect each and every binocular and spotting scope before we ship it to you to make sure there are no defects and to make sure everything will work as soon as you take it out of the box.

Why did you change your name from discountBinoculars.com?
Having two different store names - "Out of This World" for our brick-and-mortar store, and "discountBinoculars.com" for our online store - was confusing to many customers. For those who visited our Out of This World storefront in Mendocino, having discountBinoculars.com as our web presence was a huge disconnect. And for folks who had only ever discovered us online or at bird shows, coming to an optics website that also had toys, games and science kits made little sense - and conveyed little confidence in our optics experience.

So in 2014 we decided to consolidate our online presence under the "Out of This World" brand and to streamline our brand identity. While our optics-centric store lives at OutOfThisWorldOptics.com, it now has links to our main store, which includes all of our optics lines in addition to the toys, games, and puzzles we're known for at our brick-and-mortar store. Both stores, too, are now branded to align under a common logo.

We're still the leading optics retailer in Central and Northern California, but now we're consolidated under the Out of This World brand - both in our store and online!

What are my payment options?
You may pay for your purchases using any of the following credit cards:

During checkout you will be asked to provide your "CVV2 Number" or the Security Code located on your card. The diagram below indicates where you can find this code number on your card(s):

If you have any questions during your checkout process, you may contact us at (800) 228-8252.

What shipping options are available?
We currently offer UPS Ground Service, UPS 2nd Day Air Service, (to the 48 contiguous United States) or In-Store Pickup for any orders. You will be able to select whichever method of delivery you prefer at checkout. Be aware, UPS cannot deliver to P.O. Boxes! If you only have a PO Box address, please call our store directly to arrange alternate shipping.

We currently are offering FREE SHIPPING on all orders over $100 (sub-total, before tax). All other orders under $100 qualify for our Flat-Rate UPS Ground at a cost of only $7.95. UPS 2nd-Day Air is only $24.95.

We often run specials on discounted or free shipping, so pay attention to banners on the site, as you may need to enter a coupon code during checkout in order to receive the discounted/free shipping bonus.

Do you repair binoculars?
It is best to let the manufacturers repair their binoculars. We cannot keep all the parts in stock for the many differnt models that we sell. If a binocular you purchased at Out of This World is in need of repair, you may send it directly to the manufacturer or send it to us and we will forward it to the manufacturer on your behalf!
What is your return policy?
We want you to be pleased with your purchase from Out of This World! If you are not satisfied with your purchase, please return it to us in new condition with original packaging within 30 days after receipt for a full refund, less shipping costs. Please contact us before you send an order back - we do not retain your credit card information, so calling ahead allows us to get all of the information we need. Your credit card will be credited for the return once it is received back at our store.

We may charge, at our discretion, a Restocking Fee of up to 15% of the original purchase price if any product has been used or lacks original packaging, warranties, and instruction manuals.

Items should be returned to us with adequate packaging, with prepaid shipping and insurance for the full value of the item to our address.

What is your privacy policy regarding personal information gathered on the site?
Out of This World does not sell, trade or rent your personal information to others. We use the information we collect only to process your order.

We may occasionally send you email regarding new or sale products, and you may easily opt out of these mailings. When you place an order, your information is processed via secure server to encrypt all information you input before it is sent to our credit card processing agency. We do not retain your credit card information during your purchase.

All customer data is protected against unauthorized access.

Questions about Binoculars
Click on any of the questions below to reveal/hide the answer.
Isn't higher power better in a binocular?
Not necessarily! Many of our customers cannot hold a higher power binocular steady which makes the image jumpy or blurry. Higher power binoculars are generally less bright, have a narrower field of view and can seem less clear because any particulates in the atmosphere (heat, moisture, dust) are also magnified to a greater degree. Ten power (10x) is often the magnification at which you may see too much jumpiness.
What do the numbers mean on binoculars?
The first number is the Magnification (usually 7x, 8x, or 10x), meaning the image will appear 7 times, 8 times or 10 times larger than the naked eye sees it.

The second number is the Diameter of the front lens (objective lens) in millimeters. Objective lenses vary in size, usually from 20mm up to 50mm. Bigger objective lenses gather more light and will be better at dawn, dusk or in the woods where you may be viewing in more shadows. Bigger lenses are also heavier so sometimes a compromise size is best! For more information on brightness, see Exit Pupil below.

The final number that is printed on the binocular is the Field of View, generally expressed in angular degrees (i.e. 6.2 degrees) or linear feet (325 feet at 1000 yards). This is a measure of how panoramic your view is from left to right as you look through the binocular. A wider field of view allows you to more easily follow fast moving action such as a flying bird or a home run ball! Keep in mind that a higher magnification binocular will have a narrower field of view than a lower magnification binocular.

Why would I get a bigger binocular? Or, what the heck is 'exit pupil?'
Bigger is brighter! A bigger binocular gives you a brighter image therefore you see more detail. An analogy would be the difference in what you see in your hallway when there is only a night light turned on compared to using the full overhead light.

A bigger binocular does NOT give a wider field of view (field of view is related to magnification - see the question directly above).

To determine the actual brightness of a binocular, divide the magnification into the lens diameter. The resulting number (Exit Pupil) is the diameter, in millimeters, of the beam of light that hits your eye. For example, a 10x42 binocular has an exit pupil of 4.2 mm and an 8x42 binocular has an exit pupil of 5.25mm. Same lens diameter, different brightness.

When you are viewing in lower lighting conditions, your pupils dilate from the normal approximately 2-3 mm to a dilated 4-8 mm. The pupil is dilating to try to "find" more light; a binocular will be brightest when the exit pupil is equal to or greater than your pupils. In other words, a bigger/brighter binocular will allow you to see more in lower lighting conditions. (Assuming equal quality of lens and optical coatings!)

A bigger binocular gives you a wider field of view, right?
This is a common misconception. Bigger is brighter, not wider. A larger binocular does NOT by itself give a wider field of view (field of view is related to magnification - see the two preceeding questions above).
"Waterproof" and "water resistant" - what is the difference?
Waterproof binoculars have O-rings to keep our moisture and dust. They are also filled with an inert gas which keeps the binocular from fogging internally.

"Water Resistant" is a marketing expression with no true definition. For best protection in yucky outdoor conditions use a waterproof binocular.

Why are some models so much more expensive? Is there really a difference?
More expensive binoculars generally use higher quality components for better durability, clarity and resolution. Colors are more vivid, contrast is enhanced, internal reflection is diminished - the view is clearer! Medium-priced binoculars have improved in quality and value in recent years and are close in performance to the more expensive top-of-the-line models.
Binocular and camera combination models - what's the deal?
We do not recommend binocular/camera combination units. These were all the rage when they first hit the market but they offer marginal-quality binoculars with limited-performance cameras. Users with close-set eyes cannot get the binoculars adjusted to their face. And, the biggest misconception about these units is that the camera captures the same image as seen through the binocular. Not true! The camera lens is in the center of the binocular barrels.
What is a 'gray market' binocular?
A gray market binocular is one that has been purchased and sold outside the normal U.S. distribution network. It will not have the same warranty and may not have the same features. If you see a product price that is significantly lower than ours, be very suspicious! Do you really want to send your Leica or Zeiss binoculars to Germany if they need repair? And do you want to pay for those repairs? Do you really know what model you're getting?

Out of This World is an Authorized Dealer for the manufacturers whose product we sell. All products we sell have full U.S. warranties which are the best warranties in the world!

Questions about Spotting Scopes
Click on any of the questions below to reveal/hide the answer.
What magnification (power) can you use with a spotting scope?
Most spotting scopes provide magnifications of 15 or 20 power up to 45 to 60 power. This compares to binocular magnification that is usually 7-10 power. There is a limit to how much you can clearly magnify an image during the day and that limit is a function of the clarity of the air. Heat, moisture, fog, pollution, or dust will also be magnified along with your ultimate target. Heat or fog magnified 60 times looks hotter or foggier than if it was magnified 20 times! Higher power, therefore, does not always look as clear as lower power.

Spotting Scopes are often sold with a choice of eyepiece/magnification. Generally, fixed power eyepieces provide somewhat greater clarity and a wider field of view than the same magnification in a zoom eyepiece. Zoom eyepieces provide more magnification choices -- and tend to be more popular for that reason.

Isn't higher power better?
No, not necessarily! Higher power magnifies the heat, moisture or dust in the air so the image will seem less clear. Also, higher power has a narrower Field of View making it harder to find moving targets. Higher power is also darker, thus limiting the amount of detail seen.
This lower power spotting scope looks clearer than the high power one - why?
Higher power magnifies the heat, moisture or dust in the air so the image will seem less clear.
How far will a spotting scope see?
The sky's the limit! On a clear day you can see to the horizon. Clarity of the air is the limiting factor in how far you can see. At night, spotting scopes can also be used for basic lunar and planetary viewing.
Does the spotting scope include a tripod?
Spotting scopes mount on camera or video tripods that are generally sold separately from the spotter. If you have a sturdy camera or video tripod, it may be sufficient for your spotter. The tripod must be sturdy enough to steadily hold the scope with a minimum of vibration.

If you plan to buy a tripod for a spotter, we recommend video tripods because they "pan" smoothly as you move the scope. Both camera and video tripods have a quarter-inch 20 standard screw on the head of the tripod that can also be used with still cameras or video cameras.

What is an APO, HD and ED lens?
ED (extra low dispersion), HD (high definition) and APO (apochromatic) are terms that are utilized to describe a higher grade of glass. Chromatic aberration, or false color and color fringing, can be eliminated or improved with the use of this better, more expensive, glass.
Should I get an angled spotting scope or a straight body?
Spotting scopes are available with eyepieces set at a 45-degree angle from the scope body or in a straight line with the spotting scope. One design is not better than the other; rather it is simply a matter of personal preference.

The straight-through eyepiece design can provide a more natural "line of sight" view, making it easier for users to properly aim the spotter at the target they are seeing with the naked eye.

Angled eyepiece designs may be more comfortable if you are sharing the instrument with users of different heights, i.e. children. The angled design is also more comfortable when looking at taller or overhead objects or views.

Can I attach my camera to my spotting scope?
Digiscoping is capturing images on a digital camera using a spotting scope as a telephoto lens. There are many ways to do this with varying degrees of resolution. A digital SLR camera can be cleanly adapted to almost any spotting scope with the purchase of appropriate "T-Adapters" and "T-Rings".

"Point and Shoot" compact digital cameras can work extremely well but are more challenging to adapt: many of the spotting scope manufacturers have adapters that hold the camera up to the eyepiece of the spotter. There are also some "after market" universal adapters. But not all cameras will adapt!

At this time, Nikon, Kowa, Swarovski, Zeiss and Leica have good digital camera adapters, but not for all camera models. Please see the specific adapters listed in both the manufacturer and in our "Digiscoping" categories.

Out of This World is an Authorized Dealer for the following optic brands: