Demand for ultra-compact long-range optics poses huge challenges for SWAROVSKI OPTIK’s product developers. Packing high performance into a compact product calls for herculean efforts from optics experts and designers. “This is particularly true for products such as the CL Curio, when we were tasked with developing a device you could slip into a chest pocket. In this case, the portability of the product was almost the main challenge,” comments Sandra Schweninger.
It is important to remember limits imposed by physics. “If we were to produce binoculars with an objective lens diameter of half an inch, at typical magnification, they would have an extremely small exit pupil. The light intensity would also be impaired,” explains Schweninger. She adds that weight savings are partially achieved through raw materials, such as magnesium, aluminum, or titanium. “Of course, the optics are still made from glass, and this is the biggest weight factor in our products.”
All this makes the weight and dimensions of the ATC/STC compact spotting scope even more impressive. At just 970 grams (34.2 ounces) and 258 millimeters (10.2 inches) long, it is an indisputably powerful yet compact companion. Or, as Sandra Schweninger puts it: