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Narrowed choice down to these 3....

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/13/2008 at 23:31
JDJHNTR View Drop Down
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I have narrowed my choices down to these three. These will be used for hunting in somewhat open country. Please help me decide?? Thanks
 
- Leupold Golden Ring 8x42
- Nikon Premier LX-L 8x42
- Vortex Razor 8x42
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 08:40
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The Nikon LX_L is the best of that group.  I've used the Leupold HD 8X42 ant it's very good.  I've never looked through a Vortex.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 09:02
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No big losers in the group..I like the Nikon however
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 09:13
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I would go to a store and get them to take you outside with all three of them and try them out.  I know the Leupold is not as good as the Vortex, never seen through the Nikon.  The vortex is very nice though.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 11:09
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Thanks for the opinions guys. I really do appreciate it!
 
I do have one more bino to throw in the mix that I have been reading some really great reviews on. The Vortex Stokes DSL 8x42? A couple of the review boards rated them higher than the Razors and they about the same money. Any opinions on these versus the others? Thanks again..........................
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 11:17
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That is the first I had heard of the Stokes.  They sound really nice, if they are better than the Razors, they would be absolutely fantastic.  I really like the Razors, if I ever buy another pair of bino's they will be right at the top of my list.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 11:26
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Here is a link to how the Vortex line stacked up by one review........
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 12:01
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I just finished a SWFA test drive of the Razors for 2 weeks and I rated them well above the rest of your list. They are better than any binocular that I have ever looked thru priced under $1000.00. I have not ever had the Meoopta Meostar to compare but they also rate High. Of your 3 Leupold is the heaviest at 32 oz and the Nikon is the lightest at 28 oz the Razor in the middle at 29 oz. You really need to handle them all and see which fit your hand the best. If the Stokes are better than the Razor they must be impressive. I may be slightly biased against the Leupold's because I have seen the lack of quality glass in their rifle scope lines. Here is a link to lucznik's excellent review that covers just about everything about the Vortex Razors.   http://www.opticstalk.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=11194

Edited by 3_tens - August/14/2008 at 12:07
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 12:32
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This will go to show how different people see differently.  As far as I am concerned the Leupold Gold Ring is slightly the best of your three.  All on your list are good enough to not warrant spending any more money.  The Leupold are heavier, but they are extremely well balanced and do not feel as heavy in your hand as they are.  I also really like the Razor.  There is not much to pick between the Razor and the GR except for the obvious difference in the two designs and as to which one fits your hands the best.  I think that the ergonomics of which feels best to you will be your deciding factor.  Just because I think the Leupold is best does not mean you will too.
 
My experience in comparing the Stokes DLS and Razor says they are pretty much optical equals.  From the image alone, I don't think I could tell them apart.  The big practical differences are the obvious design shape , the lighter weight of the DLS, and the fact that the Stokes has a much more rapid "birders focus".  The DLS focus wheel goes through only a single turn of the focus wheel, while the Razor uses 1.5 turns.  The Razor has a little more FOV, if the difference between 411' and 383' mean anything to you in practical use.  That is inconsequential to me, but not others.
 
I think that most opinions will tell you that the Nikon is the best glass, but I have no experience with them outside of the dealer's store.  The Meopta Meostar has been mentioned as has the Minox HG.  Any of them will very likely give you all the binocular you will ever need.  I will just recommend that you try as many as you can and get what feels right to you.  I like the Leupold and the Razor mainly because they are big enough that you can get a good, comfortable grip with both hands and that really hepls hold them steady.


Edited by Klamath - August/14/2008 at 12:37
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 12:36
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Originally posted by Klamath Klamath wrote:

The Leupold are heavier, but they are extremely well balanced and do not feel as heavy in your hand as they are. 


LOL, just yesterday you were saying that the Leica RF binos were not good because they were to heavy at 33 oz.  Now you are recommending just a pair of bino's they weight 33 oz over a couple pair that are lighter. Smile   Wink  Just had to raz you a little for that one. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 12:44
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Well, actually, I was responding to the choices the original post listed.  And to be truthful, and I should have checked, I thought I had remembered the weight of the Geovid at closer to 40 oz.  My bad, should have checked.  I think 30 oz or so is fine when the binocular is the only gear you are packing, say for scouting or maybe on a birding outing.  When hunting, I typically use either a 20 oz Swift 7x36 or a 24 oz Vortex Viper.  Having a rifle along tends to change the equation for me.  Which is why the lighter weight of the 7-12x switch power appeals to me.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 12:49
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So Klamath, do you think the Stokes is better than the Razor for typical hunting use?  or the other way around?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 13:35
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Guys.........I guess I should have stated some facts first.

I am a Bino junkie. I have been a high end bino user for the past 15 years or so. Due to health reason that keep me from working I have had to part with by beloved Swarovski EL's and Leica BN's. I tried to be satisfied this last hunting season with the Nikon ATB's but just cant! Anyway..............not being able to justify the cost of the "Top of Line" glass now, I have decided to try something in the under $1000 range. That being said.............I do not have a store close by to try the different models mentioned and will be making the purchase solely on reviews and recommendations. Bascially.........I am putting my trust and VERY hard earned cash in the hands of you guys. I know this is not the best way to make this choice but it is what it is???? If you think another brand should be included in my options, please let me know?

Thanks again to everyone for there help and suggestions.....................

The list again...

- Nikon LX-L 8x42

- Leupold Gold Ring 8x42

- Vortex Razo 8x42

- Vortex Stokes DSL 8x42

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 14:00
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Meopta Meostar is also a fine bino.  But it costs more than the Razor and I don't think it is any better.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 14:21
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Here is a little write up I done right after I bought my Meopta Bino's

I recently picked up a pair of Cabelas Brand Meopta 10x42 binos.

They are made by Meopta and are exactly the same and the Meopta except for color and are about $50 cheaper. I have been searching and saving for a good pair of Binos for about 2 years and have tried and compaired all the major brands. After many times comparing them the Meopta are some of the best I have looked through.

These are the Binos I compared them against.
Leica 10x42 Trinovid BN Binocular
Leica 10x42 Ultravid Binocular
Leupold 10x42 Golden Ring Binocular
Bushnell 10x43 Elite Binocular
Steiner Peregrine 10-42x
Swarovski 10x42 SLCnew Binocular

Compared to the Trinovid Leica there was no comparison the competitor Euro were superior in every way. The clarity and color reproduction was much better and they were much easier on my eyes.

The Ultravid Leicas were much better than the Trinovid, but I still thought the competitor Euro was a bit brighter and the color reproduction was a bit better.

The Leupold Golden Rings were again no comparison. The Euros were brighter, clearer and had more clarity all the way to the edge of the viewing glass.

The Bushnell were okay but not really in the same league as all these other high end binos.

The Steiner which I had high hopes for were very disappointing. They were much darker and did not let the colors through as well as the other brands. They also get a tad bit fuzzy on the edges.

The Swarovski's were the best. They were a little bit brighter than the Meopta and the felt great they were a lot better than all the other brands to my eyes.

Cabelas was great to take me outside with all these bino's and let me compair them all. In the end I chose the competitor Euro over the Swarovski because the difference was so small that they were not worth the extra $700.

My rating goes as follows
1. Swarovski
2. Meopta Meostar
3. Leica Ultravid
4. Leupold Golden Ring
5. Leica Trinovid
6. Steiner Peregrine
7. Bushnell Elite.

After I got them and spent a weekend looking through them my dad got him a pair of the 12x50 and they are just as clear and bright. I highly recommend these binos and think Meopta does a great job and has a great price.


This was not a scientific test.  It was just me and my dad looking through them all together 3 different time and finally deciding on the Meopta as the best bang for the buck.  But now that I have had the chance to compare the Razors to the Meopta for a couple weeks I think they are very very close.  Vortex has better eyecups, but I like the compactness of the Meopta better.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/14/2008 at 15:13
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I suppose that if I were presented with the choice of the DLS and the Razor, one or the other, choose and use, no options available, that I would go with the Razor.  The reasons really have nothing to do with the optics or the image.  While I do not place as exteme a value on FOV as do some, I will use it at least to some extent in making a choice between two identical image binoculars of essentially the same price.  That applies here.  Score one for the Razor.  While I do not mind a faster focus like the DLS, I really prefer the slower rate of the Razor.  Score two for the Razor.  I have reasonably large hands and I like the feel of the Razor (or Gold Ring for that matter) just a little better than the DLS.  Score three for the Razor.  I think the DLS feels smaller, and more compact, as well as lighter than he Razor.  Score two for the DLS.
Final Razor 3, DLS 2.
 
Pin me to the choice between the Razor and Gold Ring, I'd have to get one of each and use them each for a week or so.  I'd go with a dealer that has a reasonably long free return policy so that I'd have the option of returning the one I didn't keep.  My feeling right now is that the Leupold is maybe a touch better, but I have more experience with it than I do the Razor.  Remove my tryout option I'd get the Gold Ring.  It would be my heavy duty scouting and in the pickup always nearby binocular.  I'll stick to the Swift Eaglet 7x36 for a light weight-is-an-issue binocular. 
 
I'll add an aside here in that I really like 7x as an all around magnification, so I'd try a Meopta 7x42 before I'd make my final decision.  I have never looked througha Meopta, but is the only one with a 7x42  in the price range.


Edited by Klamath - August/14/2008 at 15:17
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/15/2008 at 09:04
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I was in the same situation some time back and I did a lot of looking through high end and mid range glass.  For me I had had the Monarch 8x42 ATB, Kahles 8x42, and a pair of Nikon SE.  I looked at the mid range glass and this is how I would rank them if I was going to purchase one in the 500-$1000 range in 8x42

1.) Meopta (Excellent glass for the money with a great feel)
2.) Pentax or Razor its kind of a toss up just depends on how they feel in your hands.
3.) the other Vortex mid range binocular the name escapes me at this time.
4.) Kahles

I went with the Swarovski SLC 7x42 in the end just because of the great clear view with this model, great glass to view through for hours of glassing and doesn't cause headaches, not to mention their Great customer service and warrenty.  This is the last pair of binoculars that I should need for the next 20-25 years.  The newer models in the last 1-2 years have the same glass as the Swarovski ELs.  I highly recommend these if you can afford them.  Good luck in your search  and what ever you purchase be sure to go somewhere and try them out in your hands and to your eyes before you purchase them.  If I had to go with one of the binoculars it would of been either a 7x or 8x Meopta.  Thanks bird_hunter66
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/15/2008 at 12:29
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Originally posted by bird_hunter66 bird_hunter66 wrote:

I was in the same situation some time back and I did a lot of looking through high end and mid range glass.  For me I had had the Monarch 8x42 ATB, Kahles 8x42, and a pair of Nikon SE.  I looked at the mid range glass and this is how I would rank them if I was going to purchase one in the 500-$1000 range in 8x42

1.) Meopta (Excellent glass for the money with a great feel)
2.) Pentax or Razor its kind of a toss up just depends on how they feel in your hands.
3.) the other Vortex mid range binocular the name escapes me at this time.
4.) Kahles
Would that be the Vortex Viper? I just picked up a set and I'm very impressed. Of course they're my first set of mid-priced binoculars and I'm easily impressed. Big%20Grin


Edited by sholling - August/15/2008 at 12:29
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/15/2008 at 12:37
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Vipers are actually pretty good.  The Viper spotting scope is not bad either.
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