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$175 binoculars?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/05/2013 at 12:59
kweise View Drop Down
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Hi, I have some gift certificates for $175, looking to buy some binoculars for a trip to the North Carolina mountains. Will use for hiking and nature. This will be my first pair that is not super cheap.

I have to purchase from rakuten.com, but they seem to have a good selection of binoculars available. I would like to get some new HD glass, but those seem to be all over $200 and I'm looking to stay as on budget as possible. I'm thinking 8x42, but I've been reading that smaller objective lens might be suitable. I don't mind any extra weight though, so was thinking to stick with the 42mm.

Currently looking at all of these, but I don't know enough to see if any are better than the others. I'd appreciate if anyone could tell me if any of these would be considered better than the rest? I know better can be subjective, but maybe one of these stands out as better optics than the rest? I'm assuming at this price range, they're all pretty much the same.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/05/2013 at 13:11
Bird Watcher View Drop Down
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Originally posted by kweise kweise wrote:

Hi, I have some gift certificates for $175, looking to buy some binoculars for a trip to the North Carolina mountains. Will use for hiking and nature.


For hiking & nature I prefer the Nikon Action Extreme 7x35 with 9.3* FOV.
The W I D E FOV is great for panoramic views.

Nikon Action Extreme binoculars are waterproof/fogproof and have a 25 year warranty.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/05/2013 at 13:15
David from NC View Drop Down
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The Leupold is really jumping out at me but I'll admit I have no "hands on" with that model.

Also, most porro prisms would be too big for hiking but I noticed on the rakuten.com site they also have the BX1 Yosemite-these are small and handy.  

I still prefer a roof for hiking...

I have personal reasons for not buying Nikon, but I'll admit that in your list above, it also jumps out..

Hey I am a NC Mountain native-let me know (PM or email if you like) if I can make any suggestions or give any advice for your trip...

David 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/05/2013 at 13:17
David from NC View Drop Down
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Meant to add that the 8x28 Vortex on the rakuten site would be next also...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/05/2013 at 14:00
kweise View Drop Down
Optics GrassHopper
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So basically, I didn't look at the cheaper ones, ignoring what might be better? Hah.
I figured spending a little more might be better. I was reading that roof is better than porro, but I guess it's a preference thing at this point?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/05/2013 at 14:06
kweise View Drop Down
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I also notice they have the Bushnell Legend Ultra HD for $170 refurbished, anyone recommend against that? These would seem to be much better than the ones in my list.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/05/2013 at 14:56
PhilR. View Drop Down
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As for your list, I would go w/the Leupold over the bottom four, and the Alpen too. I don't know about the B&S though, so I would have to research that one.

For your purposes, I would recommend that you consider a 30-32mm bino as well. That size is perfect for your stated needs, and has the advantage of less weight and often less cost. I looked at the website since I hadn't heard of it (was surprised to see buy.com changed it's name), and found they carry the Vortex Raptor 8.5x32 that is priced well within your price range.

If you just gotta have an 8x42, then consider the Olympus EXPS-1 8x42.   It is one of the best in your price range. You can read a good review about it at the allbinos.com website. It pretty much smokes everything else they carry in your price range. BTW, this site has one of the more expensive prices for this model.

If you decide you don't want a porro, then I think I would go for the refurb Legend Ultra HD over the rest of the roofs they carry in your price range......
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2013 at 20:27
dan2nd View Drop Down
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Theron Optics Wapiti 8x32 are around $160 and they are super impressive
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2013 at 21:27
Robster80 View Drop Down
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id add about 20 bucks and get the 8x42 zen ray summit HD
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/08/2013 at 06:25
kweise View Drop Down
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Thanks everyone, I actually went a little cheaper and got the Nikon Action Extreme 8 x 40 ATB. Used the extra money left over for some other items for my trip. Hopefully they're good enough, and if I really get into using them, I'll upgrade to something better later on. Seems like I was just under the sweet spot for the better binoculars, so I'll wait to see if I actually use them.
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