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Leica Ultravid or Swaro

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 14:47
Foss View Drop Down
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Which 8X20 do you recommend.  The Swaro or Leica 8X20.  Looked through the Swaro but never the Leica.  Any other comparable glass recommendation would be appreciated. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 15:54
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Check with www.valdada.com
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 16:16
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Foss -

 

You will not find a better compact binocular than the Leica Ultravid.  They are heads and shoulders above both the Swarovski and the Zeiss, period.

 

ND2000

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 17:11
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Originally posted by ND2000 ND2000 wrote:

You will not find a better compact binocular than the Leica Ultravid.  They are heads and shoulders above both the Swarovski and the Zeiss, period.

 

Of course, I know people who own comparable Swarovski and Zeiss (and even Nikon) products who are similarly enamoured with (and prejudiced toward) their chosen models.   Go figure. 

 

I'll probably be flamed for this by some but, I've examined them all and I don't see any one as being optically superior to the others (different, yes; superior, no.)

 

The real difference is going to be in the ergonomics.  The offerings of these manufacturers all offer substantially different handling characteristics from one another. In fact, the degree of ergonomic difference between these compact binoculars is really quite astounding - much more so than with comparable full-size offerings.

  • The Leica is perhaps the most traditional in styling though, with an oversized focus knob that many say is "to die for." I personally think that the focus knob issue is more akin to "much ado about nothing" but, that's just me.
  • Both the Swarovski and the Nikon place the focus knob out to the front of the binocular, presumably so that it is not located quite so close to the face and so that a hat's brim will not interfere with its usage.  This seems to be a "love it or hate it" affair but, if you're on the "love it" side of the issue, then you might just prefer one of these options to the Leica.
  • The Zeiss uses a very interesting off-set hinge design that again some love and others hate.  Personally, I found it to be a little awkward but, I know of plenty of people who think that it's truly the "cat's meow."

If I were buying one, I would probably select the Nikon.  I fit into the "love it" category as regards the location of the focus knob and, since I can't see any real difference in the quality of the optics, I can't justify paying an extra $200-$300 for the similarly designed Swarovski nor the much-vaunted Leica.

 



Edited by lucznik
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 17:36
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When you say Nikon do you mean the Premiere LX model?  I was looking for a durable binocular.  Perhaps the Leica b/c of the rubber Armor?

 

 

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 17:55
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IOR binoculars come from a company that has been making military binoculars since 1936 and their connection with Carl Zeiss, Leitz and Leica is well known. They are very rugged and durable.

http://www.valdada.com/vn/valdada/review1
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 18:38
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Originally posted by Foss Foss wrote:

When you say Nikon do you mean the Premiere LX model? 

 

Yes.

 

Though the most current rendition is called the Premier LXL so named for reductions in weight made throughout the line - though I don't think there is much if any difference with the compact models.

 

Originally posted by Foss Foss wrote:

I was looking for a durable binocular.  Perhaps the Leica b/c of the rubber Armor?

 

First, all of these binoculars have rubber armoring to one degree or another and second, don't be misled into thinking that rubber armoring offers some kind of super-protection.  After all, every $20 Simmons compact is also rubber armored. Actually, Leica does offer the Ultravid with a leather-like covering instead of the rubber that is even a bit more compact and stylish and I've never heard anyone try to claim that it is somehow more prone to damage. It's really more about build quality than armoring. 

 

I seriously doubt that any of these top-quality binoculars can legitimately be claimed as "more durable" than the others.  I certainly don't know of anyone who's done any real testing to find out. All have lifetime warranties to cover any unfortunate eventuality.

 

If you like the Leica, go for it.   I certainly am not trying to dissuade you from what is easily one of the best binoculars in its class. My intent here is only to help you make an informed decision based on fact rather than hype. 



Edited by lucznik
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 18:42
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Lucznik -

To be sure, I do not own the Leica Ultravid compacts, nor any other compact for that matter.  I have only looked through them all on a few different ocassions under different conditions.  I just speak what I believe to be the case, as opposed to being prejudiced.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/12/2007 at 19:00
lucznik View Drop Down
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Originally posted by ND2000 ND2000 wrote:


I just speak what I believe to be the case, as opposed to being prejudiced.

 

I don't doubt your sincerity at all.

 

However, the fact that you claim the Leica to be "head and shoulders above" the rest does, by its very nature, expose a level of prejudice - or perhaps the better term would have been bias.  

 

If Swarovski and Zeiss (and even perhaps Nikon) were producing products obviously inferior to Leica's, they would be unable to maintain a footing at the top of the highly competitive optics market.  Yet, there they are year after year. Each brand has its legion of devotees and any discussion about these manufacturers'  various products typically revolves around the phrase, "Top-3 (or 4)" not, "Leica and then all the rest."



Edited by lucznik
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