AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp Review

Maven B1.2 10x42 Binoculars mounted onto a tripod using the Aziak Bino Clamp

After more than two months of testing using a range of different size binoculars, tripods, a monocular, and using different types of tripod head in a variety of uses, that includes general use, bird watching and astronomy, what follows is my full in-depth AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp review:

The Standard Way to Attach Binoculars onto a Tripod

"Normal" Vanguard Tripod adapter
“Normal” Tripod Adapter

The majority of binoculars that I test are what I would describe as being “tripod adaptable” and by this, I mean that the dust cap positioned in-between the barrels on the central hinge can be unscrewed.

Doing this reveals a threaded insert that will usually accept a “standard” tripod adapter which you can then screw into the binocular. This adapter now makes it very easy for you to attach your binocular onto a tripod.

A Better Way?

This “normal” method usually works very well and thus because a good “standard” tripod adapter is relatively inexpensive, pretty easy to find online and just what I have always done, I have never really looked for a different system… that is unless the binocular that I want to fix onto a tripod is not “tripod adaptable” and even then if you look at my section on binocular tripod adapters, you will see that there are options for just about any binocular, even if they are not able to be attached to a tripod in the normal way.

However, I was recently contacted by Rydell Reinbold, the Owner of Aziak Equipment who said that they had a new type of binocular to tripod adapter and that he would love to send in some samples for me to test and review.

Of course, I agreed, but I have to say that before trying them, I was a little skeptical as I had my doubts as to whether this was something that was needed.

What's included: Aziak Bino Clamp
What’s included: Aziak Bino Clamp, hex wrench, bolts, and nuts

First Impressions

On opening the packaging and looking at the clamp, including nuts, bolts, and hex screw for the first time, my initial thought was that there was a lot of small pieces that could easily get misplaced. But apart from the extra-sized bolts and hex wrench, they all stick together once you have completed the initial setup.

The main collar looks to be very well made and whilst it is fashioned from a type of nylon/plastic, it feels reasonably robust and I would say would only break if you were being particularly negligent by trying to open it up far too wide.

How to attach the AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp onto Binoculars
Fixing the AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp onto Maven Binoculars

Attaching the Aziak Clamp to the Binocular

Where
The Aziak Binocular Clamp is designed to wrap around one of the barrels on your binocular.

Ideally, you want to end up with a well-balanced set-up on any piece of equipment you mount onto a tripod, and thus the best location to do this to get is as close to the center of gravity as possible. On a binocular, this is often (but not always) near the main hinge and thus the ideal mounting point will often be directly in front of it.

From open-bridge binoculars to top hinge designs, there will of course be exceptions, and thus where you mount the clamp on your particular instrument may vary.

Indeed if you plan on using your tripod-mounted binocular for digibinning (like digiscoping, but with binoculars), then the added weight of the camera/phone and adapter will change the center of gravity, which you may or may not be able to cater for no matter which mounting system you use.

Also keep in mind that different binoculars have different sized barrels and as such, the Aziak Bino Clamp currently comes in 4 different sizes to cater to this. See the Compatability & Sizes section below for more info on this.

Also Note: In the image above and that of the one at the very top of this page, I have the bino clamp mounted with the screw facing outwards. Aziak has since contacted me with the advice that they recommend mounting it with the screw facing inwards as this makes the final setup more ergonomic to hold and also lower profile (nothing to snag on if the screw is facing in).

Underside view of the AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp attached to Binoculars
Underside view of the AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp attached to Binoculars

How
Once you have decided where to mount it, you simply wrap the collar of the Aziak Bino Clamp over the barrel on the binocular, with the foot of the clamp orientated in such a way so as to enable you to mount the binocular onto the tripod horizontally.

You then slot the included bolt and nut into the open ends of the clamp and then finally screw them together with the included hex wrench until tight.

Once again AZIAK Equipment shows good attention to detail as they include three different sizes (lengths) of bolt with each clamp, which increases the range of sizes of binocular any particular clamp will work with.

Writing this makes it sound far more complicated than it actually is as I found it to be very intuitive and so whilst the first time may take you a little longer than a normal adapter attachment, from then on the difference will probably be negligible.

Showing the Arca-swiss dovetail shape on the foot of the Aziak Clamp
Arca-swiss dovetail shape on the foot of the Aziak Clamp

Attaching the Aziak Bino Clamp onto the Tripod

Direct Mounting
One aspect of the Aziak Binocular Clamp that I really like is that the foot of it has the arca-swiss dovetail shape to it and thus is designed to fit directly onto the mounting plate of an arca-swiss compatible tripod head, which many good quality tripods will conform to.

This negates the need for a quick-release plate, which in turn removes a step of complexity, speeds up installation, and fractionally reduces the overall weight of the system.

Attaching the Aziak Binoc Clamp onto a Tripod
Attaching the Aziak Bino Clamp onto a Tripod
AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp fixed onto the quick release plate of a non arca-swiss compatible tripod head
AZIAK Clamp fixed onto the quick release plate of a non-arca-swiss compatible tripod head

No Arca-Swiss Tripod?
Whilst not quite as convenient, even you don’t have a tripod using the arca-swiss system, it is not a problem, as you can slot the included nut into the foot of the Aziak Bino Clamp which creates a 1/4-20 threaded hole (the universal standard) allowing you to attach the clamp on just about any quick release plate or tripod head.

Showing difference between Standard Tripod adapter vs AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp
Standard Binocular Tripod adapter vs AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp

Aziak Bino Clamp vs Standard Binocular Tripod Adapter

More Secure & Stable Attachment
Whilst I cannot speak for every Binocular Tripod adapter, I would say that in general, you will get a more secure fitting using the Aziak Bino Clamp.

This is largely down to the way that it wraps tightly around the barrel of the binocular and thus, the attachment surface area is far larger than that of a single screw mount.

With a traditional tripod mount, I also find that you also often get the issue of the binocular being able to rock from side to side as it pivots around the screw. This is not usually a major issue but can get annoying.

Lower Weight
Compared to a good quality tripod adapter, the Aziak Bino Clamp is more lightweight, and whilst the difference is not massive, it is certainly an advantage and worth me stating.

Note that you can find more lightweight, all-plastic standard tripod adapters out there, but I would highly suggest you stay away from these as the fixing is usually far from secure and the ones I have come across really don’t look like they will last.

It is also true that whilst the Aziak Bino Clamp is mostly made out of some sort of plastic, the way that it wraps around the barrel and then fixes onto the tripod not only means that if done correctly, the chances of it breaking seem small to me but the actual mount is extremely secure.

Lower profile
Whilst it is certainly possible to keep a standard tripod adapter attached to your binocular when not using it mounted onto a tripod, they are usually more obtrusive than the Aziak Binocular Clamp:

The Aziak clamp is low profile enough that it is actually intended to remain mounted to the binos and as long as you mount it with the screw facing inwards there is almost nothing to snag on.

This low-profile nature also allows it to simply slide into a binocular harness as normal without removing it, meaning that you have no extra pieces to keep track of when out in the field and it makes swapping from hand-only use to tripod mounting very quick.

The Aziak Bino Clamp comes in 4 different sizes
The Aziak Bino Clamp comes in 4 different sizes

Compatability & Sizes

The Aziak Binocular Tripod Adapter currently comes in four sizes and thus as long as you select the right one, it should fit around just about any standard-sized pair of binoculars.

To decide what size of clamp you need is straightforward, as all you need to do is measure the circumference of the barrel at the position you wish to fix it. To do this, simply wrap a small section of string/dental floss tightly around the binoculars in the chosen location, mark the location where the string completes one complete circle and then measure how long it is and compare it to the table below:

Clamp SizeSmallest DiameterLargest Diameter
15 11/16″ / 14.4cm6  5/16″ / 16cm
26  3/16″ / 15.7cm6 13/16″ / 17.3cm
36 11/16″ / 17cm7  5/16″/ 18.6cm
47  3/16″ / 18.3cm7 13/16″ / 19.8cm

What I like is that AZIAK Equipment includes three different length fixing screws with each bino clamp which extends the range of sizes that they will accept. Thus if you have a typical 42mm binocular as well as a 50mm one, I would feel confident in stating that you would only need one size clamp for both.

Indeed at the time of writing, I have tested it on both the Maven B1.2 10x42 and the Maven B6 10x50 and for me, the size 2 clamp worked perfectly on both.

Mid-Size & Compact Binoculars?
The will be some mid-size instruments and certainly many, if not most compact binoculars that have barrels with a circumference less than the minimum that the size 1 clamp can hold onto, and thus these instruments will not be compatible with the Aziak clamp, that is unless you make a plan and use something like a strip of rubber between the clamp and the binocular.

AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp on Large Binoculars
Mounting the AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp-on Large Binoculars

Large Binoculars?
The maximum circumference that the size 4 clamp can accept is 7 13/16″ / 19.8cm, which if you convert it, equates to a diameter of 63mm, which is less than that of the lens size (diameter) on many astronomy binoculars or high power long-range binoculars which are anywhere usually between 60mm and 100mm.

However, whilst most of the barrels on these may start at a large diameter at the point where they accept the large lenses, they usually taper down in circumference towards the main body of the binocular, and thus some will be perfectly fine for use with the Aziak Bino Clamp.

Indeed I tested the Size 4 clamp on a few of my larger instruments, namely the Steiner Nighthunter 8x56, the Bresser Spezial Astro SF 15x70, and the Celestron SkyMaster Pro 15x70 and all three worked fine.

Indeed, the smaller size 3 clamp was the right fit for the 56mm Steiner and not the size 4 one, which was too large at the ideal mounting point.

Over time and in the future, I will try out all four sizes of clamp-on different size binoculars and include that information here, but for now, just use the table above and measure the circumference of the barrel to know which one to get.

Cost & Where to Buy

AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp



As it stands, I think this mount is only sold directly from the AZIAK EQUIPMENT webshop, however this may change in time and thus it may be worth checking the link below which will take you to the search results on a number of other binocular realted webstores around the globe:

Where to Buy: AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp


Standard Binocular Tripod Adapter



Where to Buy: Standard Binocular Tripod Adapters

Conclusion

Highly Recommended – Sure it might take a fraction longer to set up and install the Aziak Bino Clamp onto your binocular and perhaps you could argue that the final look of the binocular is not quite as streamlined or clean looking as that with one using a standard center hinge mounted tripod adapter. But from there I have to say for just about any use and on most compatible size of binoculars, I would absolutely choose to use the Aziak Bino Clamp.

It is more lightweight, can be attached directly to any arca-swiss compatible tripod, the mount is extremely secure and you can keep the clamp attached around your binocular and take it out into the field even when you don’t plan using a tripod without any added hindrance and almost no weight increase.

What I like

  • Very Lightweight
  • Extremely Secure Mount – often more stable than that using a standard adapter mount
  • The clamp mounts directly onto an arca-swiss compatible tripod without the need of a quick-release plate – this further reduces weight and complexity
  • Can keep the clamp on binocular without compromise (does not change the ergonomics of the binocular)
  • Its low-profile nature also means it won’t snag onto anything and allows it to simply slide into a bino harness as normal without removing it, meaning that you have no extra pieces to keep track of when out in the field and it makes swapping from hand-only use to tripod mounting very quick.
  • After initial setup, it is very quick to mount the binocular onto a tripod (with or without a quick-release plate)
  • Can use on many non-tripod adaptable binoculars
  • Will work on binoculars with very little room between the barrels
  • This may seem like a small thing, but I do like the fact that I don’t have to remove the dust-cap from the front of the binocular in order to mount it onto a tripod. Why I hear you ask? Well I have ended up loosing them on more than one occasion over the years, which is fine whilst mounted, but looks terrible when you don’t have the binocular fixed on a tripod.

Weaknesses

  • The initial setup is a little more time consuming (especially doing it for the first time) than the typical standard tripod adapter instillation. However once you know how, you will get much quicker.
  • Whilst they are flexible, one size does not fit all – this may be an issue if you have a binoculars of vastly different sizes that you want to mount onto a tripod as you will need more than one clamp
  • The Aziak Bino Clamp is more expensive than your typical, well made standard tripod adapter – however, they are very well made and there is that feel-good factor knowing that you are supporting a small innovative company and that someone will be there to talk to you if you need any help.
Maven B1.2 10x42 Binoculars attached to a tripod using the AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp
Maven B1.2 10x42 Binoculars attached to a tripod using the AZIAK Equipment Bino Clamp

Further Reading

Share

Comments are closed.