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Which is the better deal?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/11/2009 at 20:54
ajlandis View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
Optics Apprentice

Joined: September/02/2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 56
I'm wanting to get a good pair of binos.  After looking over some of the more recent posts, I've seen positive thoughts on three different brands in my price range ($500 or less).  I'm not sure what I actually need to spend.  I need a good set of glass that I can count on.  Mostly looking for wildlife from the porch or truck.  Some hunting.  Just an all-around set.  But I like nice optics.  So I'm wondering how much I would be best served to spend for my intended purpose.  The three brands I mentioned seem to fall into three price catagories.  The less inexpensive two that seem to be well recieved are the vortex diamondback and the zen ray summit.  They appear to be $160-$220.  The higher priced models are the vortex vipers and the zen ray ed's.  These appear to sell from $450 to $520.  In between these two price ranges are the leupold cascades at $260.  What I'm looking for is the best bang for the buck.  If the lower range has the better quality-to-value, I'll go that route.  If the upper priced models offer enough to justify the increased cost, I'm willing to pay for it.  I'm just a fan of the "best for the money".  I work a lot, so I don't have much time to go to stores to compare, let alone get out in the field with different models to do satsfactory comparisons.  I'm going on your words and reviews.  FWIW, the best set of binos I have are burris landmarks that came free with a scope purchase.  That's all I have for a reference.  So, if you were me, and had your knowledge, what would you get?  (Suggestions other than the brands mentioned are welcome.)  Thanks.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/11/2009 at 21:12
Bitterroot Bulls View Drop Down
Optics Master Extraordinaire
Optics Master Extraordinaire

Joined: May/07/2009
Location: Montana
Status: Offline
Points: 3364
Well, your choices are all pretty good.  All of them will make you drop-kick those landmarks. 

I spent some time with the Diamondbacks, but found their depth shallow and sharpness lacking, but still good in that price range (especially with that wide, wide field).

I have not ordered the Zen Ray Summit HD's yet, but I plan to. I want to check out that quality per dollar ratio.

I am partial to the ZEN ED, as I have posted quite a bit about them already in my short time with this great forum. 

The vipers are nice, but ZENs are better.  I reviewed the ZENs in the Members Review section, and I found they compared favorably to the more expensive Meopta Meostars.  The ZENs are sisters to the Hawke Frontier ED, which is reviewed in the Members Review section (and is directly compared to the Vipers).  There is a third sister: the Promaster superduperlongname ELX.  The three sisters have the best glass in your price range.  However, as mentioned elsewhere, these are new products from new companies, so they may have some issues.

Additionally the ZENs can easily be found shipped under $400.  I hope that SWFA picks up Zen Ray (and/or the other sisters' companies), so that we can order from a quality company we trust.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/17/2009 at 15:31
volsdad View Drop Down
Optics GrassHopper
Optics GrassHopper

Joined: March/25/2009
Status: Offline
Points: 3
The new 2009 Diamondback at $219.00, they are brighter and more clear than the old diamondbacks. For my old eyes they are great. Lifetime,no fault warranty.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/20/2009 at 21:54
Vichris View Drop Down
Optics GrassHopper
Optics GrassHopper

Joined: May/19/2009
Status: Offline
Points: 3
I agree with BB The Zen ED is definately the best bang for the buck right now. For $359 they easily beat binos that are much more expensive. Vortex has nothing in their lineup that is as good right now and thats saying something. The Vortex Vipers are just a slight step down from the alpha glasses. If the Zen ED was $400 more it would still be a good deal. I've spent alot of time switching back and forth between Leica triovids, Swaro EL's and Zen ED over the past month. There's hardly a dimes worth of difference in over all quality. The ED's actually out perform both of them in some key areas. There is definately much more than a dimes worth of difference in price.
Get the Zen ED's. I highly recommend them
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/21/2009 at 15:00
muleycrazy View Drop Down
Optics Apprentice
Optics Apprentice

Joined: May/21/2009
Status: Offline
Points: 74
I dont have any experince with the zen rays so I cant help there. But the vortex diamondbacks are a great deal in my book and the excellent warrenty they have is not somthing to over look.
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