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Vortex Viper HD or Talon HD

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/26/2011 at 09:06
Wolfman123 View Drop Down
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I'm in the market for a new pair of 10x42 bins and I'm not willing to pay beyond $600.  I've had a chance to do an abundant amount of research and narrowed my choices to either of the Vortex HD's, the Talon or Viper.  As far as I can tell there's no difference is glass.  The only differences I can see are in price, FOV (which favor the Talon) and weight and size (which favor the Viper).  Unfortunately, I can't seem to find anybody near who has them but I'm already accustomed to their optics and don't need or desire to look elsewhere...their warranty is like no other, which tells me they believe in their product and are willing to stand behind it, which for me, goes a long way.  Has anyone had a chance to compare the two side-by-side?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/26/2011 at 13:56
Klamath View Drop Down
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I've only had a brief side by side comparison of the two.  Personally I'd take the Talon.  That is mostly a fov preference on my part.  The Viper is smaller, but I don't think significantly smaller than the Talon to make me change my mind. 
 
There is probably a technical difference in the glass, as they are two completely different optical designs, the Talon from China, the Viper is Japanese.  The COO may make a difference, but there it is.  Vortex's use of the "HD" is practically meaningless as it tells you precisely nothing.  It simply refers to the use of a high density, low dispersion glass.  That takes in a broad chunk of territory.
 
The Vortex warranty is a good one, but I've had to use it on every Vortex binocular I've ever had.  I have a Razor HD that is going back because the focus knob just fell of the binocular.  I had an original Viper that needed focus work too, and a Fury that had diopter problems.  The Talon is the same glass as the ZEN ED series of glass, and they have proven, to me anyway, that they are amply tough enough, so that is another reason I'd do the Talon.


Edited by Klamath - July/26/2011 at 13:58
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/26/2011 at 14:16
Wolfman123 View Drop Down
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Thanks for your help Steve.  Man, I hate these decisions!  I do like the look of the Talon slightly better and I'll have to admit, I'm intrigued by the ZEN ED3 or 2 (there doesn't seem to be much difference as detailed in another post of yours), and specially after learning they too have a descent warranty.  I know nothing about them other than what I've read on the Internet.  Weight and size is a relatively small concern as I prefer to walk alot when I hunt but I don't think there's enough of a difference between the three to make much a difference.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/26/2011 at 14:23
Wolfman123 View Drop Down
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I know Europe has the best glass.  Between China and Japan who has the better glass in your opinion?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/26/2011 at 15:22
Dyelynn View Drop Down
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the reason i've settled on the zen is that everywhere i've read stuff, no one really has anything bad to say about them.  sure i've heard opinion based on where they're made, ect.  but in terms of operation and use, everyone i've read, at the very least, can't complain.  i've found that when there's anything wrong with an item, you'll find far more pissing and moaning over it on the internet, than people singing it's praises... so the fact that i can't find almost any gripes, is very telling (to me, imho).

the reason i've settled on the ED2 is the 8x has a pretty fabulous deal right now, on closeout special :)

i don't know for certain, so wait for klamath or one of the more seasoned glass guys to comment in confirmation or correction, but i think the main general difference between chinese glass and japanese glass is the country of origin.... which is very important to some folks.


Edited by Dyelynn - July/26/2011 at 15:23
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/26/2011 at 15:34
Wolfman123 View Drop Down
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I agree, I haven't heard alot of bad things about either of the Viper, Talon or Zen's...that's what intriques me about them.  However, with regard to the Viper and Talon they've had some pretty good "official" reviews on websites that provide review results.  My only wish is that they would provide me with one on the Zen's and I'd be alot more comfortable in buytin one.  As unknown as the Vortex's are, in comparison to some of the "well known" ones, the Zen's are way-unknown.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/26/2011 at 15:59
Dyelynn View Drop Down
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true... but i'd tend to take any review on the  manufacturer's website with a grain of salt :)  it doesn't behoove the company to publish bad ones... just google (or whatever your fav search engine) blah blah review, and read away.

you're very right about the zen's being underknown... there's not nearly so much information on them as others, as they're a pretty new company... but you can also look at the theron wapiti and... there's another manu/model that are all the same binos with different outsides, and they all have very little, if anything, bad said about them.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/26/2011 at 18:59
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I am glad you posted this. As with all that had gone on in my previous thread, I am now too, in the market for possibly getting the Talons. I was thinking that or a Zen Ray ED2/ED3. I may be going with Vortex simply because I dig the armor and I have heard great things about their warranty. I may give Zen Ray a try once more has come out about the ED3's. They are still very new and I can't find much on them.

I believe the Japan glass is going to be better as it seems Japan, when over, is usually over in all aspects. But the price difference seems to make me wonder if it is worth it. The difference in quality is probably negligible between these two models (Viper/Talon.) After all, for ~$450, the Talons are not on the cheap spectrum of China made at all.

P.S.
The Zen Rays are also made in China, but I have heard great things about the ED2. The only bad thing (in my opinion) that I have heard is the focus wheel sometimes has some play in it. This doesn't matter to some, but I figure it would annoy me. The previous Nikon Monarch I had was totally solid in focusing and I loved it.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/27/2011 at 07:27
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 Don't overlook the Theron Wapiti. Very good glass.
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