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Old Tuesday 1st March 2016, 05:40   #26
peatmoss
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Bruce's review says thin plastic...
That's all well and good. The one in front of me right now is metal.
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Old Tuesday 1st March 2016, 19:11   #27
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I probably misread, but I was commenting on the wouldnt touch another Bushnell part.
Yeah, your right there, I went too far. I would definitely consider the current Elite, as it optically very good and a great value.
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Old Tuesday 1st March 2016, 19:11   #28
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That's all well and good. The one in front of me right now is metal.
If that's the case, good on Bushnell for correcting the flaws of the previous series.
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Old Friday 4th March 2016, 00:58   #29
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It really is a shame that the Viper HD's seem to have a more limited IPD range than some of their other binoculars. I find it particularly odd considering, as you and others had mentioned, Vortex has offerings both lower in price and higher in price when compared to the Vipers, which do offer the smaller IPD.

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IPD...
My girlfriend has the same issue as you. Vortex 8X42 Diamondbacks listed at 57mm, WORK. My Vortex Viper HDs, 8X32s AND 8X42s listed at 59mm DON'T work. Vanguard Endeavor ED 8X42s DON'T work.

One binocular that DOES work for her and she really likes is the Cabela's/Meopta 8X32 Euro HD. Another one is the Leica Trinovid 8X42. I know those two are in the $800-$900 range but at least not quite as much as a Razor HD.
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Old Friday 4th March 2016, 01:04   #30
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Thank you for the suggestion! I had started to read into the Conquest, but then I managed to finagle a deal on a brand-new 3rd gen Vortex Razor HD... for a total cost of $949. I consider that a great price for a new Razor. Unfortunately, the shipping is dreadfully slow and it will be a few days yet before I receive it and get to try it out!

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Mrmsister ...... Zeiss is known for many of their models accommodating folks that require a smaller IPD. The Conquest line in both the 32mm series and the 42mm series specs the IPD as 52mm to 74mm. Better yet, the Conquest is a most excellent binocular and costs less than the Razor!

Eagle Optics and B & H Photo have a reduced price right now on the 10X42, new at $889. B & H is showing $899 for the 8X42. You must add either unit to the the shopping cart at B & H to see the reduced prices.
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Old Friday 4th March 2016, 01:33   #31
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Hi everyone :) Sorry it took me a few days to start getting some more replies in. Between work and school there just never seems to be enough time in a day.

I had just wanted to give those interested an update with respect to having finally had a chance to try both the Legend M and the Vortex Viper HD in brighter conditions. Compared back-to-back and viewing the same objects (trees, squirrels, woodpeckers, etc.) in the same lighting conditions it seems that the Viper finally managed to pull ahead of the Legend M. More specifically, in brighter conditions I found the Vipers to offer more contrast and detail (particularly while looking at ornate features such as tree bark) and I was also surprised to see that the Vipers appeared to have greater color saturation (or, at least, more color saturation while looking at the reds of a red-bellied woodpecker).

For their price I really do think the Bushnell Legend M's hold their own very well against the more expensive Vipers while outdoors and perhaps even do slightly better than the Vipers in low light. However, I believe the final decision has been made that I will return the Legend M's due to how stiff the focus wheel is. While using them I find myself constantly trying to re-adjust the focus wheel back and forth in an attempt to get a sharp image. Comparatively, the focus wheel of the Viper is light and buttery smooth. I find it MUCH easier to focus from one extreme to another quickly, as well as to achieve sharp focus when I am using the Vipers.

Bushnell has a great binocular in the Legend M... but there is simply no excuse for how much more difficult it is to use its focus wheel. My finger slips right over the groves with little traction and I often find myself using two, or even three fingers to try and get the focus wheel moving where I want.

Conversely, the small machined 'pyramids' which make up the Viper's focusing wheel dig into the fingers quite readily and the focus wheel is a true pleasure to use.

But, alas, still being faced with the lower IPD limitations of the Viper I find that I simply cannot use it and will likely end up selling it soon as "like new" condition, either on a forum, or on eBay. It's a darned shame, because I think the Vipers are an AMAZING value for the money and, frankly, if not for the IPD I would probably say that I like the Vipers so much that I'd ask to be buried with them in my old age. LOL

Anyway, having now had a taste of what quality binoculars can actually do I then decided to check out the Optics Planet site and ended up ordering both a Vortex Talon HD 8x42 AND a Vortex Razor HD 8x42 to try out. I was able to get both at fairly reasonable prices, thanks to coupon codes and chat-based pricing negotiations with one of their reps... and figured I had nothing to lose since Optics Planet offers free returns.

It will be Monday at the earliest before the Talon and the Razor are delivered and I am eagerly waiting to try them out! One thing that does leave me scratching my head, though, is why the focus wheel of the 3rd gen Razor uses grooves in contrast of the 'pyramid' spiked focusing wheel of the 2nd-gen Razors. On brief glance it appears as if the focusing wheel of the 2nd-gen Razors were virtually identical to that of the Viper HD which, as mentioned above, I consider to be EXCELLENT in both smoothness and tactile feel.

Last edited by mrmister2000 : Friday 4th March 2016 at 01:39. Reason: Sentence coherence
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Old Friday 4th March 2016, 01:53   #32
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Thanks for the final report, always interesting to read others opinions
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Old Friday 4th March 2016, 02:10   #33
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You're very welcome. :) I know it is very basic and is planets away from the kind of info you would find in "real reviews", but sometimes simple isn't so bad. I hope to share some very basic findings/comparisons once I get the Talons and Razors, as well.


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Thanks for the final report, always interesting to read others opinions
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Old Friday 4th March 2016, 03:15   #34
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You're very welcome. :) I know it is very basic and is planets away from the kind of info you would find in "real reviews", but sometimes simple isn't so bad. I hope to share some very basic findings/comparisons once I get the Talons and Razors, as well.

I prefer a simple summation, too many times the real reviews get bound up in the minutiae of details that only mean something to the person writing the review.
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Old Tuesday 15th March 2016, 01:06   #35
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Hi all! I finally had a moment to post and figured I would share my latest experiences. As had been mentioned a few weeks back, I decided to order two more pairs of binoculars for my 'unprofessional' comparison to the Bushnell Legend M's and the Viper HD's. More specifically, I had ordered the Vortex Razor HD 8x42's, as well as the Vortex Talon HD 8x42's.

My shopping experiences were... shall we say... a tad odd... in that it seems that the first Razor I received had poor/defective optics! For several days I went back and forth between the Razors and the Vipers, looking at high-detail objects such as tree trunks and various birds as they waited their turn to fly over to my feeder. I kept scratching my head and thinking "Jeez, things look more detailed through the Vipers than through the Razors..." and for several days after getting home from work I used the final few minutes of daylight to continuously compare them back-to-back, thinking maybe I was just "seeing" things.

However, after a few days of such back and forth (throwing in the Legend M's for good measure) I decided that perhaps I needed to order and try another copy of the Razors to compare, so I did. Actually, I ordered two more copies... because despite getting a good price on the 2nd pair, after coupon, they were on back-order and I was much too impatient to wait for delivery. :P

The second pair of Razors I received confirmed my suspicions, in that I found them resolving greater detail under the same lighting conditions, using the same static resolution chart/target, as the the first pair I had received. I found the optics of the 2nd pair of Razors to be very, very sharp... but I did detect some slight chromatic aberration while using them to look at tree branches contrasting against a bright, overcast sky. I also saw a similar amount of CA from the Vipers under the same conditions, at the same time, looking at the same branch. I was not really expecting to see CA in a pair of binoculars as expensive as the Razors and am not really sure what to make of that.

CA aside, I honestly prefer the look and feel of the Vipers in my hands more-so than I do the Razors. I attribute this to the fact that the Razors barrels can only be comfortably held in the hands if the barrels are separated from each other, thus leaving a gap between them (as in the case of someone with a large IPD using them).

I found the the focus wheel on the Razors even lighter and smoother than was the case with the Vipers (which surprised me) and the rubber coating of the Razors focus wheel gripped my fingers well. Focusing wheels on both the Viper and the Razor are excellent, to say the least, and while I prefer the extra lightness in movement of the Razor's wheel I must say that I prefer the texture of the Viper's micro-pyramid-machined wheel.

As far as my experience with the Talons... well.... apparently they sold out of the Talons at approximately the same moment as I had submitted my order... and so the merchant ended up sending me a 2nd pair of Viper HD 8x42's in its place, for the same price as the Talons! If not for the previously-mentioned issues surrounding my particularly narrow face and the IPD range of the Vipers I would have thought it was Christmas morning!

I really did want to try the Talons out for comparison, but I guess the binocular gods just weren't siding with me on that particular day and I know have far too many binoculars relative to my bank account balance, so some must be either returned or re-sold.

In the end, I still contend that the Bushnell Legend M's offer fantastic image quality for the price... but that darned super-stiff focus wheel is simply a "no-go" for me. And, as before, I still contend that the Vipers are AMAZING, but they don't fit my IPD, so they just won't work for me no matter how badly I want them to. (Apparently kicking and screaming on the floor does not magically change the IPD range of a binocular. Who would have thought?). That leaves the Razors, which will be the model I think I will end up keeping. Although, I do find the Mavic line of binoculars (B.1 and B.2) to be intriguing... and I kinda' would like to hold a pair of those in my hands, as well.

Last edited by mrmister2000 : Tuesday 15th March 2016 at 01:07. Reason: Sentence coherance
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Old Tuesday 15th March 2016, 02:14   #36
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I really did want to try the Talons out for comparison, but I guess the binocular gods just weren't siding with me on that particular day

In the end, I still contend that the Bushnell Legend M's offer fantastic image quality for the price... but that darned super-stiff focus wheel is simply a "no-go" for me. And, as before, I still contend that the Vipers are AMAZING, but they don't fit my IPD, so they just won't work for me no matter how badly I want them to. (Apparently kicking and screaming on the floor does not magically change the IPD range of a binocular. Who would have thought?). That leaves the Razors, which will be the model I think I will end up keeping. Although, I do find the Mavic line of binoculars (B.1 and B.2) to be intriguing... and I kinda' would like to hold a pair of those in my hands, as well.
You aren't missing anything with the Talons. They are not as good as the Viper, and not even close to the Razor. The focus wheel is not nearly as smooth as others in it's price range, and it has a yellowish cast that to me is quite noticeable. IMO it is also bigger and heavier than it needs to be as well.

I just tried a 10x42 Legend M, and my opinions about it are very similar to yours. I was pleasantly surprised at how sharp and bright the view was in the central area. Sharper and brighter than an Endeavor EDII. I did notice a rather small sweet spot, but it would not be a deal-breaker for me. If it were not for a substandard focus wheel, I would be comfortable in recommending one for someone who is looking for a 10x42 under $260. However, the focus wheel needs a lot of work. Not exactly a disaster, but not good. I know of binos that cost half as much as the Legend M, but yet have much better focus wheels. The one I tried was stiff to turn, made a lot of lubricant noise, and had a tremendous amount of backlash. Other than that, it seems to have a good quality of construction, and also had pretty decent objective covers that are more like soft rubber than hard plastic. I have to say that I was not expecting it to be as good overall as it turned out to be, but I really hope that Bushnell does something about that focus wheel.

p.s. Mavic is a line of bicycle wheels......

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Old Tuesday 15th March 2016, 23:44   #37
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p.s. Mavic is a line of bicycle wheels......
Whoops! You're right! I like my MTB wheels like I like my binoculars.... expensive.
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Old Tuesday 15th March 2016, 23:57   #38
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However, the focus wheel needs a lot of work. Not exactly a disaster, but not good. I know of binos that cost half as much as the Legend M, but yet have much better focus wheels. The one I tried was stiff to turn, made a lot of lubricant noise, and had a tremendous amount of backlash.
Right-on. I don't know what Bushnell was thinking when they designed the focus wheel. I seriously doubt it would have gotten good user feedback during demo testing. I also just saw that the 10x42 Legend L's just won "Staff Pick" over at binoculars.com. I have to wonder if the Legend L's have a different/smoother focus wheel given the different chassis design?

I wouldn't mind trying a pair of Legend L's to find out... but as it is I now have roughly three pairs of brand-new and practically-brand new binoculars to try and sell, in order to help recoup the costs on the Razors I'm planning on keeping. Initially, I had set out on a budget of $300 (hence the Legend M's). But, like a trip to Walmart, I always end up spending 3 times as much as I expected to.

Last edited by mrmister2000 : Wednesday 16th March 2016 at 00:04.
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Old Wednesday 16th March 2016, 00:07   #39
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I always end up spending 3 times as much as I expected to.
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Old Wednesday 16th March 2016, 04:55   #40
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Right-on. I don't know what Bushnell was thinking when they designed the focus wheel. I seriously doubt it would have gotten good user feedback during demo testing. I also just saw that the 10x42 Legend L's just won "Staff Pick" over at binoculars.com. I have to wonder if the Legend L's have a different/smoother focus wheel given the different chassis design?

I wouldn't mind trying a pair of Legend L's to find out... but as it is I now have roughly three pairs of brand-new and practically-brand new binoculars to try and sell, in order to help recoup the costs on the Razors I'm planning on keeping. Initially, I had set out on a budget of $300 (hence the Legend M's). But, like a trip to Walmart, I always end up spending 3 times as much as I expected to.
I understand what you and Phil are saying about the focuser. The lubricant feels like stirring molasses, and the harder you try to turn it the more it seems to resist. Besides the Legend M, I've also encountered this lubricant in the Kowa BD-XD, which I tried last year. If it's any consolation, the Kowa's focuser eventually eased up with lots of exercise, so I'd expect the Legend M to behave similarly. I know you've already spent a lot of time on this, but if you like the Legend M's general style, but want a lighter touch on the focuser, you might consider trying the Zenray ED3 8x43. While I haven't used an ED3 yet, I've used an ED2 and a Prime, and the focusers are definitely light enough to turn with a single finger.
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Old Wednesday 16th March 2016, 11:42   #41
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I've used the Z-R's as well, and also found them to be a very competent bino for their price. I think that a demo ED3 for under $350 is perhaps the best buy in the US for under $559......
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Old Friday 25th March 2016, 03:07   #42
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I understand what you and Phil are saying about the focuser. The lubricant feels like stirring molasses, and the harder you try to turn it the more it seems to resist.
For the past week, or so, I have mainly been using the Vortex Razor HD, but earlier tonight had decided to give the Bushnell's one last try before I pack them up for return tomorrow. After having become accustomed to the general ease and smoothness of the Razor's focus wheel my experience tonight while trying to turn the Legend M's wheel was akin to trying to turn a focus wheel which feels like it's been lubricated with Elmer's glue. I thought the focuser on the Legend M was bad before.... but now that I've gotten used to the focuser on the Razor it makes the focuser on the Legend M THAT much worse. Seriously, Bushnell, there is just no excuse.
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Old Thursday 18th August 2016, 17:59   #43
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Here goes...

I am no bino expert but,... I now have 4 pairs of binos! ....B&H has Bushnell Legend 10x42 M series on sale at $259.00, with a $50.00 rebate. Couldn't resist. Received them 8/10and have been using them in the field ever since alongside my Zen-Ray ED3 10x43s(and Theron Wapiti 10x42s!), 6 excursions. Twins, but maybe not identical twins. Yes, very bright, and clear in the sweet spot, surprisingly so. Just as are my Zens... I think the Zens have a somewhat larger sweet spot, and better edges. Still, the sweet spot on the M series is probably 75-80% of the view, and the edges are not bad at all. I will keep them. As far as I can tell, only the Alphas produce better image quality than these 2, but not by much. BTW, the M series diopter ring appears to be metal, and is very stiff. Tough to lift, and to seat. The focus wheel is very smooth, with a very small amount of play. I might add, except for the edges, where they excellent, the Therons don't quite equal the performance of the others. Still, a very good pair of bins and a steal for the price.

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Old Thursday 18th August 2016, 18:53   #44
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How about eye strain and headaches? Chinese glass is OK for casual use but wouldn't want to look through them all day. That is the deal breaker with the Chinese glass and mid tier Japanese glass. You can glass all day with the European offerings without problem.
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Old Friday 26th August 2016, 22:39   #45
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How about eye strain and headaches? Chinese glass is OK for casual use but wouldn't want to look through them all day. That is the deal breaker with the Chinese glass and mid tier Japanese glass. You can glass all day with the European offerings without problem.

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Old Saturday 27th August 2016, 14:18   #46
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perterra, unfortunately he believes that crap......he's a troll and an idiot in one package.
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Old Saturday 27th August 2016, 20:35   #47
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perterra, unfortunately he believes that crap......he's a troll and an idiot in one package.
I assumed that.
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