The Beecher Mirage 4X and 5.5X provide moderate magnification in a lightweight headborne binocular system. The expanded field of view and brightness of these optical systems make the Beecher excellent for television viewing by patients with loss from macular degeneration and other conditions. For more severe loss there is a 7X and 8X power. The most common uses of the Beecher Mirage are television viewing, viewing religious services, viewing sports events and driving.
The Beecher Mirage was developed by the late Dr. Beecher, from the University of Chicago. Our practice has prescribed over 1200 Beecher Mirage systems. Today we have a group of Beecher products to help many degrees of vision loss at near and far. The systems weigh about 3.5 ounces and are easily focused for distances from about seven feet to optical infinity.
Patients generally report a better appearance of colors in TV viewing which we believe is due to the brightness of the system. Patients in the range of about 20/100 to 20/300 may benefit from the 4X system.
The Beecher Mirage 5.5X and 7x are high powered, but lightweight head borne binocular systems. An expanded field of view and high power makes the Beecher excellent for television viewing by patients with loss from macular issues. Many patients with vision below 20/400 can see television detail with the Beecher.
Near point caps are available to shift the focus from the distance to a close distance. This works well on the computer screen. The Beecher Mirage focuses naturally to about eight feet, but a near cap can be attached to one objective lens to allow the Beecher to focus at closer distances.
The 5.5X Beecher can be adapted to become a bioptic system used in bioptic driving. For driving, we mount the Beecher Mirage over the bridge of the eyeglass frame. We fit a clear and a sunglass pair of eyewear for each patient to drive with. The type of frame must be carefully selected to fit with the Beecher. Tilting the head down allows the patient to view through the Beecher. A head tilt up allows the patient to view under the Beecher with her eyeglasses.