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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/19/2009 at 07:31
SChunter View Drop Down
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Are there any good binos made in China?  I know of all the bad ones. . .
I have family travelling to China and was wondering if there were any binos worth aquiring.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/19/2009 at 09:35
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Not being an expert on the Chinese market I suppose I could be wrong about this but, I would be very surprised if the various brands and models of binoculars being made in China and imported to the USA were to be available in Chinese markets - especially not at any kind of a significant discount. 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/19/2009 at 09:37
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There are a fair number of decent quality Chinese binoculars.  Almost anything from about $350 or so has a good chance of chinese manufacture.  There are three chinese binoculars in particular, the Zen Ray ZEN ED, Promaster Infinity Elite ELX ED, and the Hawke Frontier ED which sell for $3560-400 or a little more have absolutely astounding optics for the price.  Do a google search on the last three and you will find all sorts of information.  There are reviews here as well.
 
Vortex has a fair amount of chinese stuff, everything from the Fury downwards, some of the Leupold Green River models are chinese, some new Pentax models and even some old standby designs like the Nikon Monarch are Chinese manufacture.  A lot of Bushnell stuff is chinese as well.  There are others, so if you are concerned, look at the label.  You don't have to go to china to get good chinese optics.
 
I agree with luczink about there being a better chance of getting them here.  Most chinese manufacturers make optics for other optics companies and probably don't sell their own stuff direct.
 
 


Edited by Klamath - March/19/2009 at 09:40
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/19/2009 at 10:35
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Steve, I have been a fairly constant reader aong the bino lines here, and I was hoping you would respond based on your reviews of the Zen Rays--My parents are travelling there and I have given them a copy of your short list and my price limit.  I was looking to buy a pair of Vortex Razors, but if I can nab a pair of Zen's in China . . .
 
Thanks for your responses. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/19/2009 at 10:55
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Well, I do know the folks at Zen Ray and can tell you that there is no way you can get them from the factory in China.  That same thing will almost certainly apply to all others as well.  The reason being, that once the factory produces a binocular, it comes off the line with the label of whatever company they have manufactured it for.  It is the property of the company whose label the binocular bears, and the factory cannot sell it under the terms of the contract with Zen Ray.  Promaster and Hawke will probably have similar contractural language too.   
 
You might be able to find some other variation of the same binocular somewhere in china, but I would have no idea where.  If you bought it from someplace in china, that is where warranty and service work would be done as well.  Zen Ray, Promaster, or Hawke will not warranty a different label than their own. 
 
I think you are far better served to buy one here.  That way you have a valid warranty and a source for service and repair.  Even here, these are relatively new companies, whose future is not guaranteed, so I can see no good point in further diluting the service. repair, and warranty chain by having to transfer it to china to begin with.


Edited by Klamath - March/19/2009 at 18:25
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/19/2009 at 11:27
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Steve, those were my thoughts, but I figured I would ask the question.
The rebate that Chris F. posted about the Razors make them look even better--150 off the 50's and 100 off the 42's.
Thanks
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/19/2009 at 11:47
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Originally posted by Klamath Klamath wrote:

Well, I do know the folks at Zen Ray and can tell you that there is no way you can get them from the factory in China.  That same thing will almost certainly apply to all others as well.  The reason being, that once the factory produces a binocular, it comes off the line with the label of whatever company they have manufactured it for.  It is the property of the company whose label the binocular bears, and the factory cannot sell it under the terms of the contract with Zen Ray.  Promaster and Hawke will probably have similar contractural language too.   
 
You might be able to find some other variation of the same binocular somewhere in china, but I would have no idea where.  If you bought it from someplace in china, that is where warranty and service work would be done as well.  Zen Ray, Promaster, or Hawke will not warranty a different label than their own. 
 
I think you are far better served to buy one here.  That way you have a valid warranty ad a source for service and repair.  Even here, these are relatively new companies, whose future is not guaranteed, so I can see no good point in further diluting the service. repair, and warranty chain by having to transfer it to china to begin with.
 
The other issue is that, even if you can find something that looks like your coveted Chinese binocular in some actual Chinese market (I suppose Chinese people might like to look at things far away too), there is no way to know if the binocular you are buying is actually the same (i.e. same glass, same coatings, same lens grinding standards, same waterproofing, same build quality, etc.) as the ones that get labeled with the Vortex or whatever badge.  What you may be buying is the quality-control rejects of these brands or worse yet,  even just super cheap look alikes.   
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/19/2009 at 16:56
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/20/2009 at 09:25
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you will NOT find those in China. 

Edited by anweis - March/20/2009 at 09:28
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/20/2009 at 11:14
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several years ago, when my family went with a tour group to China. There were some "mandatory" shopping stops in our tour package.  At one department store, there were some bushnell binoculars on display. The girl behind the counter punched the number on an oversized calculator to show us the price. $450+ some dollars for a Legend.Shocked!!! I might sound ignorant, but I am curious who can afford that in China.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/20/2009 at 11:48
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Originally posted by spf2 spf2 wrote:

several years ago, when my family went with a tour group to China. There were some "mandatory" shopping stops in our tour package.  At one department store, there were some bushnell binoculars on display. The girl behind the counter punched the number on an oversized calculator to show us the price. $450+ some dollars for a Legend.Shocked!!! I might sound ignorant, but I am curious who can afford that in China.
 
Those stores are not for people who live in China.
Let's start with the beginning. China has a very fast growing class with many millions of people who buy consumer goods. There are many people who buy cameras and binoculars, mostly for nature observation. 
The mandatory shopping stop stores were for tourists, not for local people. The purpose is twofold: to showcase the achievements of their industry, and to occasionally fool someone into buying.
The multitude of binoculars that come from China are manufactured for export, and most of them are not available for purchase inside China. 
Those factories have come a very long way in the last few years. They can now produce top quality optics, comparable with the best of Europe or Japan.     
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