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Zeiss 8x32 vs.alphs 7x42

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/08/2009 at 16:13
pahuntnut View Drop Down
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I know they are two different types, but here is the crossroads i am at. I want a compact bin for hunting timber and the Zeiss 8x32 would fit the bill nicely. However at 51 my eyes might like the exit pupil of the 7x42's better.  Do i go small and light with an exit pupil of 4? or heavier? Suggestions?
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The answer to your question basically boils down to whether you value compactness/portability or a little more relaxed view.
 
I'm personally a fan of the 8X32 configuration, because, as I see it, it offers a reasonable compromise between sufficient exit pupil, good magnification, and just enough compactness without being too lightweight or too small for comfortable handling.  If you carry your bins for long distances on foot, they are certainly easier on your neck.  I would get a decent 8X32 though, as you can make up much of the shortcomings of the smaller objective by having good quality optics in the first place.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/09/2009 at 16:25
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With your age of eyes, IMO I would go for the exit pupil especially if you are going to be in timber.  Get a good shoulder harness and weight becomes not much of an issue.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/09/2009 at 18:32
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thanks for the replies. any tie breakers? anyone out there my age regret getting and smaller exit pupil?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/09/2009 at 19:32
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7x42 all day long, 8x32 has more critical eye placement
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/11/2009 at 16:01
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I like the larger exit pupil as well for the ease of one handed use and eye alignment.  If I was to get the 8x32 it would be the leica ultravid.  I liked it much more than the zeiss 8x32.  I own the zeiss victory 7x42 and they are just great.   My next set is going to be 6x32.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/11/2009 at 16:14
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From personal experience, I haven't found the 4mm exit pupil of my 8X32 to be eye position critical at all in practical use.  It has become my primary hunting binocular because it's just so darn handy.  I'm sure that eye relief and eyecup design has a lot to do with how eye friendly the smaller exit pupil is.  All else being equal, a 6mm EP is more forgiving than 4mm, but again, everything is a tradeoff, and I haven't seen a scenario except in extremely poor light where I wished I was carrying one of my larger objective 8X's instead.  Even then, the larger glasses only give me about 5 min worth of low light advantage, and the outstanding resolution and contrast of the 8X32 Ultravids make up for the exit pupil disadvantage.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2009 at 19:35
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This is very much a personal choice.  

Generally, 7x42 is my favourite allround configuration.  It has a large enough exit pupil for very low light use and enough heft (combined with slightly lower magnification) to be used for extended periods of time with little eye fatigue.

Still, there is no getting around the fact that a 7x42 binocular will be alrger and heavier than a 8x32 binocular.  If compactness is important, a good quality 8x32 is an excellent way to go.

In addition to Zeiss 8x32 and Leica 8x32 already mentioned here, I suggest you take a look at Kowa Genesis 8x33 and Meopta 8x32.  They offer very good performance at lower price point.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2009 at 21:19
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Two excellent suggetions Ilya. As you know I own the little Meopta and actually had a chance to check out the Genesis 33 two weekends ago at one of the local conservation organization's "Optics Day". The optical performance of both bins is really quite surprising and entirely comparable, in my opinion, with much, much more expensive glass.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/15/2009 at 00:25
koshkin View Drop Down
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Originally posted by FrankD FrankD wrote:

Two excellent suggetions Ilya. As you know I own the little Meopta and actually had a chance to check out the Genesis 33 two weekends ago at one of the local conservation organization's "Optics Day". The optical performance of both bins is really quite surprising and entirely comparable, in my opinion, with much, much more expensive glass.

I am a big fan of Meopta binoculars as you well know and the 8x32 is a gem.  

Also, lately I have been very impressed with Kowa's Genesis binoculars.  They seem to really emphasize spectacular contrast and the image abslutely snaps into view and helps in low light.

Ultimately, Kowa is about $300 more expensive than the Meopta, so they are not direct competitors.  Both can give anythin g out there a run for the money.

In the past, my only complaint with Meopta was that the eyecups did not have any itnermediary click stops.  Now that the eyecups are a bit more sophisticated, I have nothing to whine about.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2009 at 22:03
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I'm sure not an expert, but earlier this year I went with the 7x42 as my eyes at 53 with lots of time in front of a computer monitor are not what they were (not much else is either).
 
Anyway, for me, given that I hunt in heavy cover with shorter vistas and my eyes have lost perfomance in low/dim light I went with the 7x42s.  Deer season doesn't start for me until November so I'll have to wait a while to see if it was the right choice.
 
Another factor for me was that the 7x magnification was just enough less that it was easier to hold for a steadier view.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2009 at 22:14
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This thread is starting to puzzle me. Not because of the optics suggested, but because of the notion that somehow as we get older a larger exit pupil is better.
 
It is in one sense, but not because of age. A larger exit pupil allows our eye to roam around "inside" the binocular more, which is more relaxing to the eye.
 
But as we get older the pupils of our eyes don't open up as much. There's some variation in individual eyes, but in general as we get older there's less value in a bigger exit pupil.
 
I can understand the lower 7x being steadier, but otherwise I don't get it.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2009 at 22:37
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2009 at 09:35
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Good points John.  I do know that at my age, 60, I no longer care to use 8X binoculars; they are significantly more difficult and tiring.  I have compared top quality 8X42's to 7X42's and 8X32's to 6X32's and the lower power is always much more enjoyable for me to use.  I also can't tell that a larger objective makes much difference for me.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2009 at 12:03
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i am no expert and only go by what i read. I got this off a birding site.
 
 
You can see the exit pupil as a circular beam of light in the eyepiece when you hold the binocular at arm's length. The main importance of the exit pupil is how it relates to the pupil size of your eye. The eye pupil is controlled by the iris, which acts like a variable aperture for the retina and will allow the pupil to change in size from about 2mm up to 8mm, usually depending on the brightness of the available light. When the exit pupil of the binocular is larger than the eye pupil, some of the light coming from the binocular will fall on the iris and is undetected by the observer. When the exit pupil is smaller than the eye pupil, then the amount of light falling on the retina will be less than that collected with your normal vision at that particular time, and so the object observed will appear dim. Resolution and contrast are affected adversely, resulting in loss of clarity of the observed image.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2009 at 12:47
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Unless you are really pushing the absolute lower limits of shooting light, a 4mm exit pupil is usually plenty good.  So the question is this.  Do you value compact size over maximum twilight performance?  If you do, the 8x32 should do just fine.  On the other hand, if you value Twilight performance, then the 7x42 is the choice, but I really like a good 10x42 for twilight.
For an intermediate exit pupil, look at the Swift Eaglet 7x36 for a real compact binocular or for a less compact glass, the ZEN ED 2 7x36.

Edited by Klamath - September/22/2009 at 12:48
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2009 at 14:23
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I went with the Zen 7x36. I had i down to the meopta 8x32, swift 7x36 and the Zen. This all started when i wanted a  good compact bin for lugging around the rockies for Elk and somehow I musta got lost lol. I love the Zen's, i must admit I have only Nikon Monarch's and a Steiner predator in 8x30 to compare them to but i really like the view from the Zen's. But I think i might regret not going with my original plan of getting a compact pair. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2009 at 17:46
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Originally posted by pahuntnut pahuntnut wrote:

I went with the Zen 7x36. I had i down to the meopta 8x32, swift 7x36 and the Zen. This all started when i wanted a  good compact bin for lugging around the rockies for Elk and somehow I musta got lost lol. I love the Zen's, i must admit I have only Nikon Monarch's and a Steiner predator in 8x30 to compare them to but i really like the view from the Zen's. But I think i might regret not going with my original plan of getting a compact pair. 
 
Who says you can't do BOTH?!!!Wink
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2009 at 18:32
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/23/2009 at 00:39
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To kind of get back to JB's question, is a larger objective better for any other reason even if your eyes can no longer dilate enough to take advantage of the bigger exit pupil? Specifically, does it provide better resolution or more ability to "roam" around inside the FOV? I can at least state that recently comparing some lesser 8x42 glass to 8x32 glass at twilight, the larger objective made features on a dark mountainside more visible. (Maybe all that proves is that my eyes can still take advantage of a 5.25mm exit pupil over a 4mm).
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/23/2009 at 01:32
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A larger objective binocular does provide better resolution in principle, although not necessarily in practice.  If your eyes can not dilate to fill the whole exit pupil, there are still a couple of advantages to a larger EP.  One, as JB noted, is that it cuts down on eye fatigue by letting your eye move a little bit.  Conversely, if the exit pupil is sufficiently larger than the eye pupil, minor shaking does not cause your eye to lose the sight picture or produce "kidney bean" effect.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/23/2009 at 11:28
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Originally posted by koshkin koshkin wrote:

Conversely, if the exit pupil is sufficiently larger than the eye pupil, minor shaking does not cause your eye to lose the sight picture or produce "kidney bean" effect.

ILya


Good. That means I can drink more coffee before going hunting, although I'll still have to worry about the other kidney effect! Big Smile

Seriously though, thanks for the answers.
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