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Opera glasses


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Well, I bought some small binoculars that if I remember correctly were 7x magnification. They were excellent but I did find sometimes that they were too powerful and I could be continually refocussing.

 

A friend gave me some jolly nice opera glasses quite a few years ago now. They are 3x magnification and, unless using while sitting close, don't usually need refocussing.

 

I am sure somebody who knows about binoculars will be able to tell you which type of magnification is best for indoor use. If you look at the descriptions the lenses are usually defined as y x z (eg 8 x 25) and the second number is significant in relation to the first as to whether they will be better in a theatre context.

 

There are loads of vintage pairs on offer on ebay and that gave a link to this site too: http://shop.deal-fox.co.uk/s/theatre+binoculars?k=22d47714d58979dc90c897c1ba0af727f5a6b5e1cd481ebca1c9620aaa04c7be&m=ZGYtZW5fR0ItbGFi&c=14278576886&s=96321&gclid=CPyqsuPU9LQCFW_KtAod0H8AQA

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I use a £9.95 pair of 8x21 binoculars from Muji. They are light, small enough for a handbag or gent's pocket, and do the job for me in theatres the size of the Royal Opera House and London Coliseum. They have a shop in Long Acre, London WC2, and their website is www.muji.eu, hope the link works for you.

http://www.muji.eu/pages/online.asp?Sec=6&Sub=32&PID=2751

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  • 5 years later...

I inherited a gorgeous pair of opera glasses from my family but have not brought them to the West End for many years, for fearing of losing or damaging them. Recently I have been relying on a "monocular" which, though it is good for some kinds of show, doesn't give everything one would like.

 

So, having just purchased what seem to be very good and compact opera glasses (for under £7) I thought I would pass on the tip:

 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Compact-Roof-Prism-8x21-Foldable-Pocket-Binoculars-Birdwatching-with-Carry-Case/302608331982

 

Other ebay sellers seem to be offering the same product but I can only vouch for this supplier (with whom I have no connection, I should add). 

 

I tried out the different lighting conditions of yesterday's Giselle matinee and was very pleased: these glasses are a practical small size and the price seems pretty much unbeatable. The only concern I have is that the magnification is almost too strong. The focussing - I used the most helpful though not really English instructions - taught me a trick I never knew in decades of using binoculars. Hope this helps someone.

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I have several pairs. I have both of these https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/opera-glasses-Two-pairs-one-of-them-folding/222825500924?hash=item33e16f50fc:g:lJwAAOSwdoZaeC8Z the one on the left is very compact but uncomfortable to look through, while the one on the right is good to look through but quite large. I also have a Carl Zeiss pair which look like this https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/3x25-Opera-Watching-Brass-Binocular-W-Handle-Glasses-Coated-Lens-Optic-Telescope/391837053798 Fantastic optics but a bit pretentious.

 

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I have a pair of antique mother of pearl opera glasses from Paris. Not sure how much they cost as they were a gift found in an antique shop but I find buying old is often cheaper than buying new, and they look so lovely! I wonder who originally owned them...

 

https://www.oxfam.org.uk/shop/memorabilia-and-ephemera/memorabilia/antique-mop-brass-opera-glases-in-original-case-hd_101077286?pscid=ps_ggl_shopping&gclid=CjwKCAiAk4XUBRB5EiwAHBLUMct6ZXKb8OKeNJcClwJIA_3RuW6mW3t5C5DcxegANHMAtlE5aPsUEBoCSYQQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds&dclid=CLjIjfCboNkCFY8EGQodLE4FFw

Edited by aliceinwoolfland
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