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Koshkin-Lucznik...Televid APO?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/17/2009 at 17:38
JGRaider View Drop Down
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I welcome all opinions of course, but what to you guys think of the Leica 77 APO televid spotter.  I got a killer deal and its on the way.  Have you guys evaluated this glass?  Thanks.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/17/2009 at 18:46
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I'm not Koshkin or Lucznik, but I own a Leica Televid 77 APO with the angled eyepiece.  It is a very nice spotter, but I think there are several models on the market now that surpass it.  From what I can tell from casual observation, I would place it slightly behind the Zeiss and Swarovski HD spotters in terms of image quality, perhaps on par with the Nikon Fieldscope 82 ED.  The best spotter I've ever looked through so far was the Kowa Prominar 88, and I don't think the Televid 77 APO quite compares with it.  But, I got my Televid at a good price, and I'm more than pleased with it.  The view features vibrant colors, good resolution, with high contrast and almost no chromatic aberration.  I'm a big fan of the dual ratio (rough and fine) focusing knobs, which to me elevates this spotter slightly above the Swaro and Nikon spotters based on that feature alone.  I feel it allows for more precise focusing without image shake than the focuser on the center of the scope body.  The 20 - 60X zoom eyepiece has fairly prominent tunnel vision on the low end of the power range and a somewhat narrow FOV on the upper end.  I like the Swarovski zoom eyepiece better overall.  However, I also have the 20X and 32X fixed wide angle eyepieces, and the view through them is much better than the zoom eyepiece.  I find I use the 32X WW fixed eyepiece the most, because it has a nice balance between good magnification and an expansive field of view.  The 20X is nice as well from the standpoint of FOV, but for general use, I prefer to use a little more than 20X magnification in a large spotting scope.  The only problem is that, because this scope has been discontinued, it's rather difficult to find the eyepieces for it any more, especially the fixed power eyepieces.

In short, it's a very nice, high-end spotter, though not at the very top end of the current crop of alpha class scopes in my opinion.  As much as anything else, I like it better than some other scopes based on the dual ratio focuser.  I also think it's a good looking piece of gear aesthetically.  I predict you will be happy with it.

I hope this adequately answers your questions.  If not, ask away and I'll try to answer any questions you have about this scope.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/17/2009 at 19:31
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RifleDude is the guy to listen to here.  After all, he's got the very spotter you are asking about. I have only seen this spotting scope once at an outdoor expo so; my experience with it is severely limited.  I'm afraid I wouldn't be able to give you much info of value.

In general I think Leica makes very good quality (albeit excessively overpriced) optics.   You say you got a killer deal however, so I imagine you will find your choice more than satisfactory.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/17/2009 at 20:43
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Ditto.  Listen to Ted.

It is a vary nice spotter though and if you can get a good deal, it is hard to do better.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/18/2009 at 09:18
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Thanks guys.  I always appreciate the feedback.  I think the $1399 inc brand new 20-60 was a pretty good deal.  Since I only use it about 3-4 wks out of the year I didn't want to spend $2500+ on a Prominar.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/19/2009 at 08:07
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I did receive the spotter, and my first glance is much like yours Rifle.  Fantastic view, silky smooth eyepiece, and very well built.  However, the eyepiece on this spotter does not lock in place.  It feels fairly snug alright, but the spring loaded pin on the eyepiece that supposedly locks it into place has nothing to lock into (no hole, depression, etc).   You can actually loosen the ep accidentally when using the zoom, albeit it does take a little extra effort.  It is very BIG...measuring 18.5" w/ep from stem to stern.  I'm looking at it head to head with my neighbors Ziess 85T FL today and I'll have a little better idea if I'm going to keep it.

  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2009 at 11:02
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I did have occasion to do a side by side with the Zeiss.  A quick snapshot of what I saw. Please excuse the amateur explanation:
 
Eyepiece-  As posted previously, this is the one area that really annoyed me with the Leica.  It does not lock into place and can be accidentally loosened.  both ep's are silky smooth.  The Zeiss eye position seems to be a little more forgiving also.
 
20x view-I could not tell a difference between the two.  No fringing, colors were fantastic, maybe a slight more vivid throught the Leica.
 
40x view-  not able to see much difference here.  Both had fantastic resolution, clarity, and no fringing at all.
 
60x-Definite edge to the Zeiss, obviously a little brighter with the bigger objective, but simply a better view also.  I was very impressed with the Zeiss at 60x.  Don't get me wrong, the Leica was very good also.
 
Focusing-both are easy to get focused, but I love the Televid's setup. 
 
Ergonomics-The Leica is a little too big for me, with the Zeiss being 2" shorter. 
 
Warranty-This was a pre-owned demo Televid with a 10 yr warranty.  Obvious edge to the Zeiss with lifetime transferrable warranty.
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2009 at 18:13
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Originally posted by JGRaider JGRaider wrote:

Thanks guys.  I always appreciate the feedback.  I think the $1399 inc brand new 20-60 was a pretty good deal. 
 
That is an outstanding deal for both the scope body and zoom eyepiece!  I don't blame you for buying!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2009 at 18:32
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Originally posted by JGRaider JGRaider wrote:

I did have occasion to do a side by side with the Zeiss.  A quick snapshot of what I saw. Please excuse the amateur explanation:
 
Eyepiece-  As posted previously, this is the one area that really annoyed me with the Leica.  It does not lock into place and can be accidentally loosened.  both ep's are silky smooth.  The Zeiss eye position seems to be a little more forgiving also.
 
20x view-I could not tell a difference between the two.  No fringing, colors were fantastic, maybe a slight more vivid throught the Leica.
 
40x view-  not able to see much difference here.  Both had fantastic resolution, clarity, and no fringing at all.
 
60x-Definite edge to the Zeiss, obviously a little brighter with the bigger objective, but simply a better view also.  I was very impressed with the Zeiss at 60x.  Don't get me wrong, the Leica was very good also.
 
Focusing-both are easy to get focused, but I love the Televid's setup. 
 
Ergonomics-The Leica is a little too big for me, with the Zeiss being 2" shorter. 
 
Warranty-This was a pre-owned demo Televid with a 10 yr warranty.  Obvious edge to the Zeiss with lifetime transferrable warranty.
 
Your observations pretty much echo mine between the Zeiss and Leica.  I think the Zeiss has a tad better center field resolution at higher power, but I also thought it had some astigmatism (slight fuzziness around the edge of the field) during a portion of the zoom range that the Leica didn't possess.
 
Originally posted by JGRaider JGRaider wrote:

However, the eyepiece on this spotter does not lock in place.  It feels fairly snug alright, but the spring loaded pin on the eyepiece that supposedly locks it into place has nothing to lock into (no hole, depression, etc).   You can actually loosen the ep accidentally when using the zoom, albeit it does take a little extra effort. 
 
I had the same issue with the lack of a locking feature on the eyepiece.  This is due to the fact that, like me, you have an earlier generation body and a later generation eyepiece.  At first, they didn't have a locking feature on the Televid zoom eyepiece.  Then, later, they incorporated the eyepiece lock.  Your eyepiece was made after they incorporated the locking feature on the scope body. 
 
I fixed that problem by epoxying a tiny washer on the surface of the body in the location where the locking pin rests when the eyepiece is rotated completely into locked position.  That way, the center hole in the washer gives the spring loaded locking pin a place to snap into, effectively locking the eyepiece into place.  I just used the smallest stainless steel washer I could find.  Mark the location where the washer should go with a pencil, though the scratch the locking pin eventually scores on the scope body in that location does a pretty good job of letting you know where it should go.  Rough up the bottom of the washer and the small area where the washer should go with a tiny piece of sandpaper to make sure the epoxy adheres well to both surfaces.  It's a good idea to have the protective cap in place over the eyepiece socket during the sanding and epoxy application to prevent dust or a drop of epoxy from accidentally falling onto the prism surface.  Once the epoxy is starting to get tacky but not completely cured, take a small wire or end of a pencil and scrape the excess epoxy from the center hole of the washer to ensure a good, positive recess for the pin to snap into.  Then, you can touch up any excess silver/gray paint that you remove in that area with Testors enamel model paint (from a hobby store) and a small brush.  I don't remember which color of Testors paint most closely matched the silver gray color of the body, but you can buy several colors and make test swatches on pieces of paper, then hold them up against the body to see which is the best match. 
 
This slight modification works perfectly and isn't unsightly!  Unless you know it's there, you hardly notice the little washer.  The fixed eyepieces don't have the locking pin, because unlike the zoom, there's nothing to rotate on them during use.  I'll try to remember to snap a pic of this modification and post it here.  It doesn't hamper the function of the scope in any way, and since the eyepiece hides most of the washer when in place, it's hardly even visible. 


Edited by RifleDude - April/20/2009 at 18:38
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2009 at 09:40
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Great stuff Rifle, thanks again.
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