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Leica, Swarovski, Zeiss?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2006 at 09:00
birdhunter View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
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Joined: November/14/2005
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Okay, I am working on my short list of binoculars to purchase.  This is what I am debating on. 

Leica Trivoid or Ultrivoid 8x32, 8x42

Zeiss Classic 10x42

Zeiss Conquest 8x32, 8x42

Zeiss FL 8x32, 8x42

Swarovski SLC 8x30, 10x42

 

Steiner?  Anyone have any experience with these?  What is their warrenty and service like?

 

I like the 8x because it is a little easier for me to hold steady but I might consider a 10x.  Does anyone have any opinion about these?  Pros and Cons?  Anyone have any used ones they would be willing to sell?  PM me here please.  Also where is the best place to get a deal on the above binoculars?  Many Thanks bird_hunter66

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2006 at 10:31
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Optics Journeyman
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I've owned a pair of the Steiner Safari's 8x22mm if memory serves me correct. They were junk.

 

I own a set of Swarovski SLC 10x42mm & couldn't be happier. The view and the ergonomics are great IMO. I like the Trinovids, but the ergonomics weren't the best, at least to me.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/20/2006 at 17:27
lucznik View Drop Down
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With the options you have listed on your short-list you really are going to have to go and check them out yourself.  Any opinions pro or con are going to be largely subjective and based on personal biases.  In other words, there just isn't enough difference between Leica, Swarovski, and Zeiss for an unbiased assessment of which one is "best."  There are rabid fans of each manufacturers' offerings, many of which are too blinded by their brand preference to engage in any reasonably objective discussion. Its just like asking a guy which is the better truck Ford, Chevy, or Dodge.

 

Choosing between the 30-32 and 40-42mm classes of optics will come down to a few simple considerations:

 

1. Do you wear eyeglasses?  If you do, the 30-32mm binoculars may prove unacceptable because they often have eye relief that is too short for eyeglass wearers to see the full field of view. Admittedly this is most pronounced in the 10x models but, even the 8x can prove pretty skimpy.  For example the 8x Leica Ultravid only manages 13mm of eye relief.

 

2. Do you spend a significant time glassing in "low-light" conditions (ie. early morning, late evening, overcast skies, under a significant forest canopy, etc.) If you do, the 40-42mm class of binocular would be better for these times.

 

3. Be aware that even if you only glass during bright, daylight hours the 40-42 mm glass will still outperform the 30-32mm glass.  This is because any optics resolving power is directly and dramatically affected by the size of the objective lens.  Bigger lens = better resolution.

 

The rest is just size and ergonomic factors about which only you can decide what is or is not acceptable.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2006 at 07:15
birdhunter View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
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Thanks Iucznik, I am going to a 42mm now for sure.  Do any of the big three have a better warrenty or give better service then the others?  This is a big purchase for me and I want these to last for years.  I probably wouldn't seel them unless it was to move up to a newer version of what I already have. 

 

I am looking for something for dusk, dawn, daylight and cloudy days.  I hunt in all kinds of conditions but I perfer to hunt the afternoons til dark.  Looking for something for up to 200yards for hunting along creek bottoms to hunting mid size 50 acre fields here in the southeast.  I take good care of my equipment but you never know when you might trip, fall, or drop something out of a stand.  I will definately get the binocular harness.  Should I even think about a 50mm binocular?  I thought they might be too big to stalk, walk, or too heavy to hang around your neck for extended periods of time.  Thanks

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2006 at 10:19
lucznik View Drop Down
Optics Master
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50mm objective lenses do generally add quite a bit of weight and bulk to the binocular. With a proper binocular harness, this is less of a problem than it might seem at first but again, only you can decide whether or not it is too much of a burden.  To illustrate the point, I am familiar with a lot of people who claim that a 4-5" barreled 1911 style .45 is the only acceptable choice for a concealed carry firearm and they rightly point out its incredible stopping power as compared to other handguns but, I just can't pack one of those things around all day without feeling like I'm going to throw my back out. So, I carry a something smaller. The 50+mm binoculars are kind of the same thing. Certainly their optical performance will exceed the 40-42mm class of binocular but, whether that extra performance is worth the hassle of packing the bigger unit around is entirely up to the individual. 

 

There are also a lot fewer options available in the 50+mm class and because they are less popular, few dealers will regularly stock them.  This means you might have to buy it sight-unseen since you may have to "special order" it.  To complicate the matter further, they will generally be more expensive than their 40-42mm counterparts and the dealer might insist that you pay for them up-front so that he knows you won't be able to change your mind and stick him with a  product he may then find difficult to sell.

 

Warranty issues are another interesting and highly subjective topic.  I can find people who will laud and others who will damn the service departments of every manufacturer.  The first group will sing praises of honor to the incredible customer service people who went out of their way to be helpful and to their commitment to excellence.  At the same time the latter group will decry with horror the nightmare experience they had just getting someone to talk to them, let alone fixing the problem they were having.  The reality is that all of these optics tend to have lifetime warranties and if their warranty service was truly inferior, it would be known by all far too quickly.  Optics are just a far too competetive market for any top player to tolerate major problems in their product or their customer service and still stay in business.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/29/2006 at 21:18
Acenturian View Drop Down
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Im saving as we speak.  Once I have the cash I will take a drive and have the store start handing me nocs and see which one I like.  I have yet to handle Swarovski's but I have played around with Zeiss and Leica so it will just come down to what looks good to my eyes.

 

Do the same, at that level its all personal preference.

 

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/17/2006 at 21:44
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Optics GrassHopper
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Hi,

We feel we can be at help.  Seriously.

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