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Assist needed to select first pair binoculars

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 13:05
bunkerdog View Drop Down
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i am an older returning shooter and have read and been able to learn much from the gentlemen and ladies on this forum---now it's time to make a selection---i am 63 years old and have healthy eyes except that i am very nearsighted---i will be using my optics in the field to find and possibly shoot coyote and prairie dogs and maybe a squirrel or two---rifles are coopers in .204 ruger and 6mmbr with nightforce nxs scopes---it appears i would be best served by lower power binos with the largest eye reliefs and exit pupils i can find---my selection at the moment is the meopta meostar 7x42 (have i learned anything?)---another factor to consider is price---i know good design, glass and low price are not known to travel together---i wish to stay retired so i must be very precise with my selection---i will only be able to purchase one pair and they must last "a lifetime"Wink---thank you all
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 15:33
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Originally posted by bunkerdog bunkerdog wrote:

it appears i would be best served by lower power binos with the largest eye reliefs and exit pupils i can find---my selection at the moment is the meopta meostar 7x42 (have i learned anything?)---another factor to consider is price---i know good design, glass and low price are not known to travel together--
 
 
Meopta Meostar 7x42mm roof prism is an excellent choice.
For the budget minded I prefer the Pentax 8x40mm PCF WP II Porro prism (Lifetime Warranty)
I own three Pentax PCF WP binoculars and they are rugged and will last a lifetime with minimal care.
I will be 62 in 2009.


Edited by Bird Watcher - March/22/2009 at 15:37
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 15:49
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The Vortex Razor is equal to the Meostar. They don't make a 7x42 in the Razor but the 8x42 is excellent and for $100.00+ less.

http://www.swfa.com/pc-12331-2125-vortex-8x42-razor-binocular.aspx
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 16:05
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The three brands mentioned are all excellent buys. You would have have to spend a LOT more to get just a tiny improvement in optics.
 
The only thing I would add is that given your planned uses, you might opt for a little more magnification. 7x is classic in binoculars, but you are going to be be looking for small animals that blend in very well with their surroundings.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 17:10
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Bunkerdog, Welcome!  I'm almost 60; glad there's somebody else a little older than me  Wink
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 17:18
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Originally posted by John Barsness John Barsness wrote:

The three brands mentioned are all excellent buys. You would have have to spend a LOT more to get just a tiny improvement in optics.
 
The only thing I would add is that given your planned uses, you might opt for a little more magnification. 7x is classic in binoculars, but you are going to be be looking for small animals that blend in very well with their surroundings.
 
Another one to consider is the NEW Minox APO HG 8.5 x43 BR asph, or,  the 'standard' HG 8.5x43 BR asph binocular.
 
 
 


Edited by Bird Watcher - March/22/2009 at 17:21
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 17:20
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I am impressed with the Vortex I just got, money well spent.

They ain't as clear and sharp as my Leicas, but for the price, I'd be pissed if they were!

A good friend bought a pair of Victory FLs in 10x32 a few months ago, very nice glass, not cheap, but great for most things.  In low light 10x42s are much better, but my 10x42s are significantly heavier than his 10x32s.


For your purposes and assuming you don't want to drop $1500+ on binos, Pentax and Vortex would be my first choices.

http://www.swfa.com/pc-1820-127-pentax-10x43-dcf-sp-binocular.aspx

http://www.swfa.com/pc-12330-2125-vortex-10x42-razor-binocular.aspx

Or, if you can take the pain just once, you will enjoy these for many lives to come.  My personal favorites:
http://www.swfa.com/pc-12256-2115-leica-10x42-ultravid-hd-binocular.aspx
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 20:24
John Barsness View Drop Down
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I for got to mention that I am 56 and also wear glasses. I haven't had any problem with eye relief with any of the recent full-size binoculars from any company. In fact eye relief is so good with some that I have to extend the eyecups a little to get perfect eye relief. Your results may vary, but in general eye relief isn't as much of a problem for eyeglas wearers anymore.
 
Also, as we get older the diameter of the exit pupil becomes less important, because our own pupils don't expand as widely. This varies from person to person, but a 5mm exit pupil is often plenty for people in the 60-year area. This is one reason (among others) that I have found an 8x or even 10x preferable to a 7x when glassing prairie dogs--or anything else in open country.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/22/2009 at 22:53
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For bright daylight my eye pupils stop down to 2mm.
For low light my eye pupils dilate to 6mm.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/23/2009 at 10:54
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thank you all for the warm welcome---you have presented me with a very personally tailored data response that is very much appreciated---

bird watcher---i am going to find more information on the pentax pcf wp series and will continue to research the vixen foresta series (complicated)---thank you also for the personal detailed info on pupil range of response in the aging eye

mr barsness---yes, i understand that "looking for small animals that blend in very well with their surroundings" means i should have a look at binoculars with more power---i don't want to give up contrast so must keep that in mind---when you say "8x or even 10x preferable to a 7x when glassing prairie dogs--or anything else in open country" i feel you must know me---i now reside in oregon but a move is pending to north east colorado high desert (if only someone would please buy my house)---it seems that physics determine that as the optic of choice increases in power the exit pupil grows smaller as long as the relationship of the objective/ ocular stays the same---i initially picked the 7x for its potentially larger exit pupil and longer eye relief---i felt that the larger exit pupil would make it less tiring because the eye would have a larger target (exit pupil) to follow and would have an easier time staying centered---wearing eyeglasses made me want to look for binoculars with long eye relief so i would be able to see something more thatn a dot of light---my right eye is about 6.75 minus so no manufacturer installed diopter will be able to help---you have me equipped with new information and am now looking for 8x to 10x with good contrast and hopefully good low light performance

mike650---the razor 8x will be on the list---glad you like them

mwyates---we are older now but we have all been somehow enriched by our experiences

rancid coolaid---well, it appears Semper Fi is in order here firstSalute---i, too, am a club member (sgt E-5 1968-1974)---formalities over---what model vortex have you just received?---hummm...another pentax recommendation too, i must have a look---$1000-1500 is probably my max but less is more (better) ,right?---yipes... take the pain, i could, but $2500+ even "just once" ---i remember 10-15 years ago i lamented to a very astute gentleman that i was getting old and would have to cut back on my activities---he just grinned and said "you just may live a lot longer than you had planned"---i never thought of it that way so back to the old rocket sled on rails---i can hear my sweetheart wife giggling right nowWink

thank you all again for your generous supply of information----

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/23/2009 at 19:46
Rancid Coolaid View Drop Down
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I just got the 6x32s and like them allot.

If you can stomach $1500, I'd defintely go this route:

8580Leica 10x42 Ultravid BR 40262, Black rubber armored, center focus, roof prism, Certified Pre-Owned, includes soft case and all original accessories, close to new condition. $2,100.00 $1,399.95



You will not be disappointed.


And nice to have another Devil Dog on the page, welcome.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 13:53
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I am not real keen on 10x binoculars, since, to me, they are harder to use and give me more eye fatigue.  Then again this is a personal issue since I do not have the steadiest hands in the world.  I would recommend a good quality 8x or 8.5x.  In the bang-for-the-buck department, I would go with on of the following (by price range):

Under $500: Hawker Frontier SF 8x42 or Vortex Viper 8x42

Under $700: Vortex Razor 8x42 or 8.5x50 (I prefer the larger 8.5x50 among these two)

Under $900: Meopta Meostar 8x42

Under $1400: Kowa Genesis 8.5x44

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 14:59
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Bunker, Koshkin's advice is sound, listen to him.  I don't have shaky hands, I like 10X binos, and I am a Leica fan.  I have yet to listen to him and be disappointed.  Except...well, never mind.

ILya, lay off the crack-pipe and that shakiness will fix itself.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 15:05
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Ilya,  What do you like better about the 8.5X50 over the 8X42?  I was about to get some Meoptas but the $100 rebate on the Vortes makes them a great deal.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 15:11
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10x fan here too. Need the extra power where we hunt. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 15:42
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Originally posted by mwyates mwyates wrote:

Ilya,  What do you like better about the 8.5X50 over the 8X42?  I was about to get some Meoptas but the $100 rebate on the Vortes makes them a great deal.


The field of view is a bit narrower with the 8.5x50, but I can see more detail, plain and simple, (especially in low light).  8x42 Razors are very nice, but I spent a fair amount of time looking at them side by side.  If you can live with the bulk, 8.5x50 is a better binocular, IMO.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 15:46
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Originally posted by Rancid Coolaid Rancid Coolaid wrote:


ILya, lay off the crack-pipe and that shakiness will fix itself.


I wish it was that simple.  My hand problems go a bit deeper than that.

http://www.kitchentabletopics.com/2008/04/hand-health.html


ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 16:11
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Originally posted by koshkin koshkin wrote:

  If you can live with the bulk, 8.5x50 is a better binocular, IMO.

ILya
 
ILya,
 
If you ever get your hands on a new Minox APO HG 8.5x43 BR asph, or, standard HG 8.5x43 BR asph let us know what you think of it.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 16:22
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Originally posted by Bird Watcher Bird Watcher wrote:

Originally posted by koshkin koshkin wrote:

  If you can live with the bulk, 8.5x50 is a better binocular, IMO.

ILya
 
ILya,
 
If you ever get your hands on a new Minox APO HG 8.5x43 BR asph, or, standard HG 8.5x43 BR asph let us know what you think of it.


I have seen the first edition of the HGs (non-APO) and while very nice, they did not agree with my eyes all that well.  I remember clearly preferring the Meopta to the HGs.  The HGs had a little "white out" to them and the field of view was a bit narrow.  They also played some tricks with colors: primary colors were popping, but shades of colors were harder to see (looking at the extended Macbeth chart helped there).

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/24/2009 at 20:38
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Thanks 8>)
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/25/2009 at 15:28
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WOW !!---you guys are the bestYippee---thank you

rancidcoolaid---yep, the leica ultravid is very hard to resist at the samplelist price---i do like the feel of quality---i almost made the "jump to lightspeed" with the wallet---but at the moment i need a pair of binoculars to learn with---maybe 10x is a bit much for now---i know you offer good advice when you say listen to mr koshkin

mr koshkin---i had a "good morning" salutation in mind to say in russian---but now i realize that i can say "dobre utra" but the spelling will surely be incorrect---my russian friends try to teach me little songs and and short phrases---they are only marginally successful---so i continue.....---thank you for offering your well researched advice---i, very much, like the meopta meostar 8x42 but it is more expensive and the eye relief and exit pupil are both somewhat smaller than the vortex razor 8.5x50 which may also offer more detail---the current $150 mail in rebate makes them my first choice---i have some few questions about details of construction that i was not able to find on the vortex website if i may ask---1) are the eye cups a "twist up" style?---all vortex says is "comes with tapered eyecups that retract to your choice of several distinct positions"---and--- 2) i can not find any reference to glass type---since it is unspecified must i assume it is BK-4 boron or is it the BaK-4 barium composition?---vortex information refers to "XD" glass---i this their designation for a proprietary glass composition?----thank you



 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/25/2009 at 17:02
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The eyecups are twist up style with about a dozen or so intermediary settings.

As for the glass type, noone is really going to tell you exactly what they use (and if they told you, would that make a difference?).  With the Razor, it is ED glass of some sort in the objectives.  They call it XD, but that is just a marketing differentiation.

BK4 vs BAK-4 argument usually refers to the glass that the prisms are made of, and it is not important for roof prism binoculars anyway.

As a matter of general principle, worrying about the type of glass used is, typically, a waiste of time.  a more pertinent question is whether the binocular delivers a good image to your eyes.  That is all what really counts.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/25/2009 at 18:28
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mr koshkin---thank you sir for your patienceEmbarrased---you are correct, performance is what i want---method of delivery is secondary---i will give a go with the vortex razor 8.5x50
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