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Suggestions for small - mid size bino?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2011 at 22:19
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Optics GrassHopper
Optics GrassHopper


Joined: September/14/2011
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I'm currently looking for a good small binocular to take with me on my hiking and backpacking excursions.

I'm rather new to binoculars, but I do own a pair of Vortex Vulture 8x56 which I have been quite happy with, with the exception of their huge bulk and weight (and some minor distortion across the whole visual field only apparent when panning).

For hiking, I'd like to cut the weight and bulk of these by around half, from 39 oz. to something around 20 oz. Ideally something I could fit into a large coat pocket. But the catch is that I'd still like as much optical and low light performance that I can milk out of the smaller size... I know I can't really have it both ways but I'd appreciate some input as to what the best I could do would be.

To achieve my ends, I recently purchased an ED2 7x36 from Zen ray, which I will probably be sending back. Unfortunately, while these binoculars sounded great on paper for my purposes, I have found that the first thing I notice every time I look through them are the blurry edge performance. While the edges aren't perfect on my Vortex Vulture, I have to pay attention to notice any edge problems there, whereas on the 7x36 the edge distortion is readily apparent no matter what or where I have the focus adjusted. This, coupled with a glare or reflection on the bottom of the field of view that I've noticed under certain viewing conditions (and that I notice less on my 8x56 viewing the same scene) may be a deal breaker of the 7x36's for me on these bins.

I really wanted to like the 7x36's, because to me I worry that an 8x32 would be too dim for my preferences, but what are your suggestions for what I'm looking for? Again, something around 20 oz, small, and with good optical and edge performance and reasonable in low light. 7-8x32-42 (though I worry a 42 is too large and a 32 too dim). Or am I asking for too much from a binocular? For refference, I have been satisfied with the optical quality of my Vortex Vulture 8x56's minus the minor distortion while panning issue.

Thanks for your help and suggestions!!


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/15/2011 at 07:35
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Optics Journeyman
Optics Journeyman


Joined: November/11/2005
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Based on your criteria I think the Bushnell Legend Ultra HD 8x36 would be an excellent choice. I will double check on the weight but I believe they would cover all your bases and then some. Plus they have a $50 rebate on them right now.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/15/2011 at 19:29
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Optics Master
Optics Master


Joined: November/04/2005
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I like the Zeiss Conquest 8x30.  There is cooler stuff, but for the money...  They are handy and bright.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/16/2011 at 23:28
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Optics Apprentice
Optics Apprentice


Joined: August/07/2009
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This guy has the info you are looking for  http://www.allbinos.com/allbinos_ranking-binoculars_ranking-8x32.html

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/17/2011 at 09:49
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Optics Master Extraordinaire
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Finding a 7X32 or 8X32 with a sharp edge can be a challenge, unless you look into some with smaller fields of view.  The Minox HG would be a good choice.  Also the Pentax SP or ED.  These bins have pretty narrow FOV, but great edges.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/17/2011 at 09:59
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Dark Lord of Optics

Joined: June/15/2004
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I would look at vortex viper 6x32.

Sometimes less is more and this is easily my favorite smallish binocular for the money.

ILya
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