New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - binocular power
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Check GunBroker.com for SWFA's No Reserve and No Minimum bid firearm auctions.

binocular power

 Post Reply Post Reply   Topic Search Topic Search  Topic Options Topic Options
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/10/2007 at 10:13
anweis View Drop Down
Optics Professional
Optics Professional


Joined: January/29/2006
Status: Offline
Points: 971

I notice this "bigger is better" fascination with prospective binoculars buyers who think that they need 10x, 12x, 15x, or 200x to see something the size of a deer.

First of all, high magnification does not mean that you see more, it means that you see larger and shaky objects. If you want to see more, get a higher quality binocular, not a high powered one. About 7x or 8x is all you need, and i can't think of a better low light hunting bino than a premium 7x42.



Edited by anweis
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/10/2007 at 11:51
FrankD View Drop Down
Optics Journeyman
Optics Journeyman


Joined: November/11/2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 684

Quote If you want to see more, get a higher quality binocular, not a high powered one. About 7x or 8x is all you need, and i can't think of a better low light hunting bino than a premium 7x42

 

Excellent comment! I would love to copy and paste that into my signature line with your permission.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/10/2007 at 12:33
RifleDude View Drop Down
MODERATOR
MODERATOR
Avatar

Joined: October/13/2006
Location: Texas
Status: Offline
Points: 14313
Well stated, anweis!  I have a couple friends that subscribe to the "higher magnification is always better" view with regards to binoculars and riflescopes and I've had this very discussion with them a couple times.  Once the bigger is better mentality completely takes you over, there is no reasoning that can penetrate that thought process.  These same buddies selected .300 Ultra Mags as their "go to" deer rifles and quote ballistic charts to me, viewing my 7mm-08 & .25-06 as woefully inadequate on 150 lb. deer. 

Edited by RifleDude
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/10/2007 at 12:55
lucznik View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master


Joined: November/27/2004
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 1436

This has to be the single most comon debate in optics, i.e.; how much magnification is "enough?" This also seems to be one of the two issues that results in the creation of various optics "cliques" (the other being whether or not Euro optics are worth their super-high prices.)  I definately am guilty of being right in the middle of both of these debates.

 

In both cases I seem to find myself if the company of what appears to be the silent majority.  More 10x glass is sold than any other configuration(s) combined and (despite appearances on various message boards like this one) most people can't/won't shell out the cash for "high-end" Euro glass. At least, I only know a very few who can/will.

 

Of course, the quality of the glass in question is paramount and in low-priced binoculars, 7 - 8x is probably the way to go. However, over the years, I've used high quality binoculars in 7x, 8x, and 10x.  My magnification of choice (at least right now while I'm relatively young, strong, and stable) is 10x.   I spend a lot of my time glassing over large expanses of territory where visibility goes on and on and on. 10x has distinct advantages in these conditions. However, I also spend a significant amount of time glassing in the early morning, late evening, under the canopy of heavy dark timber, and in all kinds of weather.  I have never found 10x to be at any disadvantage. I have always found 7x to be "wanting" for anything but close in observation.  It is definately not even "adequate" for long-range glassing and I don't find it particularly fantastic in low light either. 8x is O.K. but, not ideal. I suppose as I get old and lose muscle tone I may find a desire for the lower magnifications but, that time isn't now. Right now I want to see the closest, most detailed image I can reasonably get handheld.  For me, that means a high-quality (non-Euro) 10x.

 

I definately am also looking at buying a good 15x+ binocular for use on a tripod.  Certainly this represents a specialized use of optics but, I have need (o.k. well maybe more desire than need ) for this specialty.

 

This argument really all boils down to personal choice as to what gives each individual the performance they desire.  There really isn't (as far as I can tell) a "right" answer.  Just be happy you live in a position and condition that affords you the opportunity to choose whichever one you prefer.

 

BTW, The "bigger is better" mentality does not limit itself to binoculars. I'm constantly amazed at the number of people I see driving around in enormous diesel-powered 4x4 pickup trucks who neither travel off-road nor tow/haul anything.

 

And I laugh out loud at the number of magazine writers, people posting on hunting boards, and sportsman in general who believe (and preach) that nothing short of a .300+ caliber Sooper-Dooper Monster Mega-Man's Magnum is needed to reliably kill small herbivores. 



Edited by lucznik
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/10/2007 at 13:09
anweis View Drop Down
Optics Professional
Optics Professional


Joined: January/29/2006
Status: Offline
Points: 971

Frank, go ahead.

 

lucznick, you prefer the larger image of the 10x, and the shake is not an issue for you. I have an Ultravid 10x42 and i love it, but i use it on top of a monopod when i am taking long walks in the prairie and on the beaches. For most people, the extra detail shown by 10x is lost due to handshake. The Leupold GR and the Elites are excellent binoculars, but i would still put them in the second line. The only non-Euro that makes the first line on my list is the Nikon LX series.

 

If i drive a biodiesel powered (i make the fuel myself) Volkswagen Golf, shoot a 6,5x55 with a 4x32 scope, and wear sandals, does that mean i am not a tough guy?

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/10/2007 at 13:26
ahuebel View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
Optics Apprentice


Joined: December/28/2006
Status: Offline
Points: 107

I just ordered binoculars and that is the one thing that concerns me a little...whether I should have gone with the 8x instead of the 10x. For about the same price and weight I could have gotten the minox HG 8.5x52. While I would not take a shot more than around 250yds away, there are areas I hunt that I look 400 or more yards, and its nice to be able to see more detail at that distance. But really, I can see well past hunting hours with what I have and I plan on getting a really nice riflescope soon anyway....I just want to know that I made the right decision and never look back.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/10/2007 at 13:47
mwyates View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master
Avatar

Joined: June/15/2004
Location: Texas
Status: Offline
Points: 1196
I've tried to use 10X binocs a good bit.  There hasn't been any situation where I would not prefer 8X.  I would choose my 6X32's over 10X42's if I didn't have 8X.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/10/2007 at 14:07
lucznik View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master


Joined: November/27/2004
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 1436
Originally posted by anweis anweis wrote:

The only non-Euro that makes the first line on my list is the Nikon LX series.

 

 

I also like these Nikons a lot.  In fact, all things being equal I probably would have selected them over the Elites but, the deal I got on my Elite was just way too good to pass up and I am definately satisfied with them...for now.  (That new 10&17x42 Leupold Gold Ring has me a bit intrigued.)

 

I did directly compare the Elite to the Swarovski EL and I liked the Bushnell significantly better.  (I have posted about this before.) Actually, I have yet to ever be very impressed by any of Swarovski's offerings. They are nice to be sure but, no better than a lot of lower priced glass. I can't think of any situation where I would willingly select a Swarovski over the higher end lines of any number of other makers including Kahles, Minox, Nikon, Bushnell, etc. I have not had the chance to do a head-to-head comparison between the Elite and either the Leica Ultravid or Zeiss FL. I have handled both of them though and I don't remember ever being so blown away by either of those two optics that I would anticipate any big surprises if I ever got a chance to do one.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/11/2007 at 07:56
birdhunter View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
Optics Apprentice


Joined: November/14/2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 92

Guys, I believe that "bigger isn't always better".  Hunting whitetail deer here in the Carolinas I have tried everything from a .243, .270, .280, .25-06, .30-06, .308, .300 Win-Mag.  I really perfer something on the lower end.  For the last couple of years I have shot a Remington Model 700 in .243 and currently I have and all weather/stainless barrel and action and it serves me well.  I have taken many deer in the past several years with it  I have friends that shoot .308, .7mm and .300 win-mags.  My gun has killed just as many if not more then the big guns.  By the way I have a Leupold 3.5 x 10 x 40mm Vari XIII on it and love it and wouldn't think about needing a more expensive or bigger scope.  Its just over kill for the deer around here.  I can understand the big bore guns out west though.  In binoculars I have always liked the 8x and I have looked through alot of 10x but for most its hard for me to hold them steady for a clear image.  Just my preference.

 

I couldn't imagine stalking or hunting out of a tree stand with a big 10x56mm or 10x50mm due to size and weight.  Most of my short around here are 150yrs and less.  I hunt wooded creek bottoms, small fields 30 acres or less and thickets between fields mostly.  I am down to the Swarovski SLC 7x42, Leica Trivoid 7x42, 8x42 or Nikon LX or LXL 8x42.  Any thoughts on any of these?  Thanks

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/11/2007 at 08:19
anweis View Drop Down
Optics Professional
Optics Professional


Joined: January/29/2006
Status: Offline
Points: 971
Originally posted by birdhunter birdhunter wrote:

I am down to the Swarovski SLC 7x42, Leica Trivoid 7x42, 8x42 or Nikon LX or LXL 8x42.  Any thoughts on any of these?  Thanks

 

Either of these would be a great choice. My choice would be the SLC 7x42 because of the flat distortion free view and overall ease of view. The Trinovid 7x42 is just as awesome, with a bit more bending at the edges, but you better hurry, because they no longer make them. The Trinovid 8x42 is the least pleasing of the Trinovid line, i don't know why, i just like the 8x32 and the 7x42 much better. You can't go wrong with the Nikon LX, they are excellent. I don't like them because of their shape and very fast focus. 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/11/2007 at 08:27
FrankD View Drop Down
Optics Journeyman
Optics Journeyman


Joined: November/11/2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 684

anweis,

 

Thank you.

 

Quote I spend a lot of my time glassing over large expanses of territory where visibility goes on and on and on. 10x has distinct advantages in these conditions. However, I also spend a significant amount of time glassing in the early morning, late evening, under the canopy of heavy dark timber, and in all kinds of weather.  I have never found 10x to be at any disadvantage. I have always found 7x to be "wanting" for anything but close in observation.  It is definately not even "adequate" for long-range glassing and I don't find it particularly fantastic in low light either. 8x is O.K. but, not ideal. I suppose as I get old and lose muscle tone I may find a desire for the lower magnifications but, that time isn't now. Right now I want to see the closest, most detailed image I can reasonably get handheld.  For me, that means a high-quality (non-Euro) 10x.

 

Lucznik,

 

Interesting comments. I felt the need to comment further because my experiences support some of your comments but differ with others.

 

Case in point, I find myself reappreciating the 10x magnification choice lately. I make no attempt at hiding that I am now a big Meopta proponent. I picked up a pair of their 10x50s and the Cabelas Euro 10x42s lately and have been extremely impressed not only in the binocular themselves (optically and mechanically speaking) but also my ability to use them, comfortably, in almost any condition. I believe this is the result of several specific issues. One, the Meoptas are a higher quality level of binocular. Up to this point I do not think I have owned any 10x bin more expensive than the Monarch. The brighter, sharper edge to edge image quality must be contributing to my change of heart with 10x in this case.

 

Two, is the weight issue. The Euro weighs in at 30 oz while the Meostar 50 mm weighs 35 ounces. Both bins would be considered "heavy" compared to many of the mid-priced roofs on the market and "somewhat heavy" to average for their high end European counterparts. I believe it is this extra weight that makes them inherently more stable in my hands. It negates any extra shaking I might typically experience with a 10x bin.

 

I guess one also has to consider ergonomics as well. If a bin doesn't have good balance or a comfortable feel to it then no magnification is going to be comfortable. My current choices seem to fit me like a glove. As morbid as it may sound, I just love touching them. I love wrapping my hand around the barrels.

 

Lastly, I think my earlier comments about having such a wide sweet spot in conjunction with a bright image really makes a full sized or oversized 10x more attractive to me. When you throw in the larger apparent field of view that 10x bins typically have I do not really feel like I am "restricted" in any way

 

On the other hand, my experiences with 7x are the opposite of yours. In a high end model (Trinovid, Ultravid, FL or SLC) I do not feel like I give up anything with the 7x magnification. Though the apparent field isn't quite as wide (around 55-58 degrees in most cases) the wide true field of view, excellent depth of field and relatively wide sweet spot on most of the models I mentioned makes the view much more relaxed and "easy" when compared with that of the 10x.

 

I used a pair of 7x42 Trinovids almost exclusively while hawkwatching this past fall. I spent hours upon hours scanning not only the horizon but large expanses of the sky as well. I found the 7x magnification to be just about ideal for this application because it was so effortless and relaxing on the eyes. I compared a 10x50 to the 7x42 directly during two of those outings and had a hard time finding any instance where I was only able to find and/or ID something strictly with the 10x and not the 7x.

 

In terms of overall brightness I have found the 7x42 to only be bettered by the 10x50. In this case I think the big jump in objective size tends to overshadow the smaller exit pupil. Coupling a 5 mm exit pupil with a 10x magnification really provides more detail to my eyes in low light conditions compared to that of the 7x42. I would probably choose the 7x42 though for low light use if portability was more of an issue. I have yet to find a 10x50 that I would call even remotely lightweight, compact or handy but they certainly have their place.

 

Quote Right now I want to see the closest, most detailed image I can reasonably get handheld.  For me, that means a high-quality (non-Euro) 10x.

 

On a somewhat whimsical note, I wish you guys would stop uniformly lumping all the European bins together under that "Euro" tag. Can't we call them something different like "GermAust" or "AuGer" bins? My Czech bins are a great value.

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/11/2007 at 08:35
FrankD View Drop Down
Optics Journeyman
Optics Journeyman


Joined: November/11/2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 684

Quote am down to the Swarovski SLC 7x42, Leica Trivoid 7x42, 8x42 or Nikon LX or LXL 8x42.  Any thoughts on any of these?  Thanks

 

I tend to agree with the previous suggestions and for exactly those reasons. However, I would probably opt for the Trinovid 7x42 over the SLC 7x42 because of length and weight issues. I compared the two side by side and noticed very little, if any, difference optically. But that is my eyes and not necessarily what you might be able to pick up on.

 

I like both versions of the Nikon as well. They have, arguably, the widest sweet spot of any binocular I have owned and their image quality matches the high end Austrian German glass. The only area they are deficient in is their true field of view....only a bit narrower than some of the other high end models.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/11/2007 at 15:32
lucznik View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master


Joined: November/27/2004
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 1436
Originally posted by FrankD FrankD wrote:

 

On a somewhat whimsical note, I wish you guys would stop uniformly lumping all the European bins together under that "Euro" tag. Can't we call them something different like "GermAust" or "AuGer" bins? My Czech bins are a great value.

 

 

Point taken.  Yes, when I say Euro I generally have only the "Big 3" in mind. I have yet to see/handle any of the Meopta binoculars but, your assessment has me intrigued.

 

As to the rest of it well, all I can do is just reemphasize that it's just good that we all can choose what we each like and what fits our personal interests best. I'm quite sure there will be a cold day in Hell before anyone convinces me that I should give up my 10x in favor of anything less powerful.  The same (though opposite) can easily be said for those who prefer their 6x and 7x binos.   And that's perfectly O.K. by me.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/11/2007 at 18:40
Tero View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
Optics Apprentice
Avatar

Joined: December/04/2006
Status: Offline
Points: 135
I was happy to see more detail in the woods in wrens and thrushes and woodpeckers.They were not that far a way. The best 8x would have worked. I though for a moment I would just go for 10x50, but never did follow through. I did not like the 10x50 porros and it was a lot of work to find a 10x50 Iliked.

I had the 8x40 porros with me in the woods in the winter one time, and they worked OK, but as it was a bit cloudy, I was wishing for the 10x50 again. There are not that many birds in the woods in winter, and I never did find owls or grouse. A few turkeys once, but i could see them with no bnoculars. I spend more time in spring and fall.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/11/2007 at 19:09
Bird Watcher View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master
Avatar

Joined: August/30/2006
Status: Offline
Points: 1490
Tero,

I'm still looking at the reviews done by the Cornell Lab back during the winter of 2005.

Twenty seven (27) mid-priced ($200-$500) binoculars tested:

#1) Leupold Wind River Katmai 6x32

#4) Leupold Wind River Pinnacle 8x42

#10) Leupold Wind River Katmai 8x32

#12) Leupold Wind River Olympic 8x42

#22) Leupold Wind River Olympic 10x50

Have you ever handled and looked thru the Olympic 10x50?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2007 at 05:44
FrankD View Drop Down
Optics Journeyman
Optics Journeyman


Joined: November/11/2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 684

Quote Have you ever handled and looked thru the Olympic 10x50?

 

I am not Tero but I did own the Olympic 10x50 once. Its most favorable characteristic is its brightness level. That really jumped out at me in comparison to the 10x42 Monarch I was comparing it against at the time. The sweet spot size seemed very good as did just about everything with the fit and finish of the binocular.

 

Two issues made me return them. One, the true field of view was very narrow...262 if I remember correctly and the balance was very poor. They were very front heavy.

 

lucznik,

 

Thanks for the reply. I most definitely was not trying to sway you away from your 10x. As you stated I think we all enjoy whatever we magnification we choose for specific reasons. As long as we are happy nothing else matters.

 

Let me know if you want to give one of the Meoptas the once over. Maybe we could arrange for you to evaluate one of mine. 



Edited by FrankD
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2007 at 19:04
Tero View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
Optics Apprentice
Avatar

Joined: December/04/2006
Status: Offline
Points: 135
I only looked at a few 10x50 porros and no roofs. The roofs just seemed ridiculously heavy. I was happy with a few porros, but close focus at 20-25 ft always the problem. I looked up some 10x40 porros and some of them seemed to have good specs.

The few Leupolds I have seen always had too little fov for a general binocular. The optics were otherwise fine.

In winter looking at ducks and gulls I get away wtih the 10x42 Monarchs.And I usually have a scope too.
 Post Reply Post Reply
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Similar Threads: "binocular power"
Subject Author Forum Replies Last Post
Binocular power? Baylian Binoculars 11 11/8/2006 8:03:01 PM
$1000 plus binocular preference and power birdhunter Binoculars 19 1/30/2007 12:19:57 PM
Change the power on a fixed power scope kaban56 Rifle Scopes 5
Fixed Power vs variable power Bonefish Rifle Scopes 24
Fixed power vs Variable power scopes Roy Finn Rifle Scopes 39
Variable Power vers Fixed Power GuytonSqHunter Tactical Scopes 26
Help me choose a tactical binocular with reticle fnbrowning Binoculars 2
Binocular repair Salejo2 Binoculars 2
Low powered optic cody0707 Tactical Scopes 6
Junk binocular prism Stranger Binoculars 5


This page was generated in 0.078 seconds.