Harry Potter’s magical time-freezing binoculars have made their way into the 21st century, and are set to revolutionize bird watching, horse racing, cricket and even opera.
Designers at Sony have invented binoculars that allow users to pause, rewind and play back whatever they are viewing, reports the Daily Mail.
The digital devices – reminiscent of the ‘Omnioculars’ used by Potter to watch his favourite sport of Quidditch – will allow a birdwatcher to record a sighting of a rare species and then send proof to other twitchers within minutes. A GPS receiver also notes the position of the sighting.
They will let golf and cricket spectators enjoy their own action-replays at live tournaments or test matches.
And the technology also allows music fans to record and watch concerts in 3D, while recording the sound in stereo.
Sony says its ‘Vinoculars’ – or video binoculars – are the first devices of their kind in the world.
Unlike conventional models, which rely on two sets of lenses side by side to make distant objects appear closer, the hi-tech version captures images using two miniature cameras positioned in parallel.
And there won’t be the usual frustrating fiddle to bring an image into focus, as the Vinoculars also come with electronic autofocus and ‘steadyshot’ technology to stop images shaking even when magnified at up to 20 times.