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lightweight rugged 10X binos for mountain hunting?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/12/2007 at 05:58
Jomas View Drop Down
Optics GrassHopper
Optics GrassHopper

Joined: December/12/2007
Status: Offline
Points: 1
I am looking for a set of binos for mountain hunting. Leica, Zeiss Swaro or even Nikon would suit me fine.
Any suggestions?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/12/2007 at 06:12
Acenturian View Drop Down
Optics Journeyman
Optics Journeyman

Joined: September/07/2004
Status: Offline
Points: 543
Well Leica, Zeiss, Swaovski and the Nikon Premeire LX line are all top of the hill glass. There really is no "wrong answer".  The Leica and Swaro's (depending on model and your price range) were a bit heavier then the Zeiss FL's.  The Zeiss FL's were a bit brighter then my Swarovski's or my other friends Leica.  However, the Swaro's and Leica tended to have a larger "sweet spot" or a more larger area of the lens that was very crisp and sharp without distortion, in my opinion the Swaro had the best.  The Nikon's were right there with the BIG 3 and felt nice in hand.  To me the Swaro's "felt" the best in hand and I like their warranty and they have GREAT customer service some of the other brands are lacking in that area.
Perhaps a slight step down in glass but definitly the winner in the weight catagory is check out the Minox HG line.
The only way to really see and feel what works for you is to go and pick up and compare glasses, if possible find a store that will let you go with a clerk outside and look since artifical store lighting makes even the cheapest stuff look good.  When I bought my Swaro's I was all bent on getting the Zeiss FL's but after picking them up and looking at all the brands mentioned as well as the Leupold Golden Ring (which im my opinion is not in the same class as the Zeiss, Leica, Swaro or Nikon) It came down to pretty much the Swaro and Nikon for me, I liked what I read about Swaro's customer service, I liked the warmer image and I loved how the felt in my hand ............Sold to the man in blue :)  But seriously there is no wrong answer at the level all are very good.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/12/2007 at 08:56
Bird Watcher View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master

Joined: August/30/2006
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Points: 1523
AC is correct when he says that you need to hold different binoculars and look through them. 
Not all binoculars will fit your hands the same, and different binoculars have different eye relief, so, when you put them up to your eyes some are more comfortable than others and some require less "fiddling around".
There is nothing worse than putting a binocular to your eyes and immediately you began to have problems with some blackout, or, the eyecups feel unpleasant against your face.
You wouldn't let someone else pick out your eyeglasses, the same applies to your hunting glass. 
Find yourself a large sporting goods store and plan on spending some valuable time experiencing the products that you are interested in making a major investment  in.
I have looked through all the major brands that you mentioned and found the Swarovski to be the most comfortable, and the best "balanced" in my hands.

Edited by Bird Watcher - December/17/2007 at 22:32
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/17/2007 at 21:33
anweis View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master

Joined: January/29/2006
Status: Offline
Points: 1026
I choose a 8x32 for mountain hunting.
I initially tought that i need a 10x42, but climbing on top of the mountain taught me to shed any possible ounce and to get smaller and lighter gear. When climbing, your pulse and breathing get faster and your hands and body shake; the handshake makes the minimal advantage offered by a 10x useless. To stabilize a 10x and to get the most of it, i had to sit down. But sitting is not always possible because of vegetation (it blocked my view) weather (wet grass is not fun to sit on). Also, visibility is often limited not by binoculars power, but by atmospheric and weather conditions. You can't see through fog, mist, rain, snow, or mirage whatever the binoculars.   
So i just got a great 8x32. It's light and hand shake and steadiness are no longer an issue.
I think that the sharpest and brightest 8x32 is the Zeiss FL. It works great for me.
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