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Leupold Yosemite 6X30 vs...
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Well, I had to see what all the fuss was about so I got a pair of Yosemite 6X30's. I spent the 2 hours before dark yesterday and the first hour of light comparing them to my Katmai 6X32, my Kahles 8X42 and a pair of Swaro EL 8.5X42 I borrowed. It was probably too many binoculars to look at but it was interesting. First the Yosemites are an amazing value. The view is bright and clear, with the increased depth perception you get from porro's. They are obviously not as well made as the others I was looking at, but certainly don't appear to be cheap, and they are advertised as waterproof and do have the Leupold lifetime warranty. They don't focus as close as the others, but did seem to focus a few feet closer than the 15ft specified. They are very light, and of course a good bit bigger than the Katmais. Two hours before dark the only significant difference between all four was magnification. The Yosemite may not have been quite as sharp, but the difference was negligible. (Keep in mind, you can buy 24 pair of Yosemites for what 1 Swaro cost). Both pair of 6X glasses were easier to "use" than the 8X; they just handled better and were easier to focus, etc. I was looking at objects up to 400 yards away and never felt the 6X's weren't "enough". In the last 10 minutes of light, all still gave acceptable performace and would have been good in any hunting situation. I preferred the Swaro and the Katmai late; the Swaro provided a little bit more detail, but the Katmais seemed a bit brighter (may have been a function of magnification). Conclusions: 6X is all I need in a binocular. The Yosemite is great. This pair will be kept at my cabin. If I had to have them as my main binoculars I couldn't complain too much, but I'm glad I have the Katmais. I'd like to see a pair of 6X from Swaro, Zeiss, or Leica (why did 8 and 10X get to be the standard?).
Edited by mwyates - April/11/2008 at 09:47
No man on his deathbed ever said "I wish I'd made more money".
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