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Old Friday 21st July 2017, 15:31   #1
Moose8
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How is the Canon 10x42 IS in low light?

I currently own a vortex vulture 8x56, and a leica ultravid 8x32. I'd like to get rid of the vortex 8x56 as I've just gotten used to the better optical quality of the Uvid. However, I miss the low light viewing at twilight and at night!

I was looking at the Canon 10x42 IS as I really like the idea of IS in general.

However, comparing the exit pupils of the cannon and my current 8x32 ultravid, the cannon is still only 4.2mm compared to the 4.0mm of the 8x32's....

Is the 10x magnification and the image stabilization of the cannon enough of an upgrade to give better low light performance from the 8x32's? Or would I be better off with a larger aperture with some other binocular (which would be too bad as I'd really like the idea of the IS feature in general). Thanks!
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Old Friday 21st July 2017, 16:04   #2
dipped
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moose8 View Post
Is the 10x magnification and the image stabilization of the cannon enough of an upgrade to give better low light performance from the 8x32's?
Yes, the twilight factor is higher and the IS makes the extra detail useable, is the short answer.

Longer answers may follow.
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Old Friday 21st July 2017, 16:30   #3
WJC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moose8 View Post
I currently own a vortex vulture 8x56, and a leica ultravid 8x32. I'd like to get rid of the vortex 8x56 as I've just gotten used to the better optical quality of the Uvid. However, I miss the low light viewing at twilight and at night!

I was looking at the Canon 10x42 IS as I really like the idea of IS in general.

However, comparing the exit pupils of the cannon and my current 8x32 ultravid, the cannon is still only 4.2mm compared to the 4.0mm of the 8x32's....

Is the 10x magnification and the image stabilization of the cannon enough of an upgrade to give better low light performance from the 8x32's? Or would I be better off with a larger aperture with some other binocular (which would be too bad as I'd really like the idea of the IS feature in general). Thanks!
Here is a graphic I cobbled together for a company I worked for.

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Old Saturday 22nd July 2017, 10:17   #4
kabsetz
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Yes,

The 10x42 L IS is in my experience a peerless twilight binocular. In low light, when my color vision begins to go and my eyes receive less and less photons, the advantages of image stabilization are accentuated further. No hand-held binocular, no matter what its exit pupil, shows as much for my eyes than the Canon with IS engaged. I have made direct comparisons with most of the top contenders, including Swaro 10x50, 10x56 and 8x56.

Kimmo
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Old Saturday 22nd July 2017, 18:42   #5
denco@comcast.n
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Yes,

The 10x42 L IS is in my experience a peerless twilight binocular. In low light, when my color vision begins to go and my eyes receive less and less photons, the advantages of image stabilization are accentuated further. No hand-held binocular, no matter what its exit pupil, shows as much for my eyes than the Canon with IS engaged. I have made direct comparisons with most of the top contenders, including Swaro 10x50, 10x56 and 8x56.

Kimmo
"No hand-held binocular, no matter what its exit pupil, shows as much for my eyes than the Canon with IS engaged. I have made direct comparisons with most of the top contenders, including Swaro 10x50, 10x56 and 8x56."

I agree totally. The Canon 10x42 IS-L is without peers in bright light and low light. I have compared it to all the alpha's just like Kimmo. The IS put's it a notch above all other binoculars.

Last edited by denco@comcast.n : Saturday 22nd July 2017 at 18:45.
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Old Sunday 23rd July 2017, 15:17   #6
huronbay
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Have spent some time with low-light comparisons. The 10x42 IS certainly shook some assumptions for me.

Am not ready to say that it is the peer of a quality non-IS 10x56 for low-light, but it certainly does impress when focusing on an object in very low-light and then turning the IS on.

Just received a 10x56 SLC-HD to put my mind at ease...
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Old Monday 24th July 2017, 09:30   #7
kabsetz
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Huron,

If you put the 10x56 on a tripod, and perhaps if you brace it extremely well, it will be better in low light than the Canon. Otherwise not. For what it is worth, the 10x56 SLC has perhaps the best image quality overall of all the binoculars I have tested, it just doesn't have IS.

Kimmo
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Old Monday 24th July 2017, 15:31   #8
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Thank-you Kimmo. I appreciate your experience and the 56mm SLC information.

fwiw...last evening, under heavy foliage (no sky visible) it wasn't until about 30 minutes past sunset that the SLC showed me more detail than the Canon, handheld. Very close. For me, both the 56mm SLC and a 10x54 HT are brighter than the Canon 10x42--but the tremor-free quality of the Canon's image is better until the light was very dim. Once I walked up from the river bottom to a field under sky, the Canon was back in play, showing a buck deer's small antlers easily. We are short barred owls this year...the rabbits are happy.

For Christmas, Santa could bring an image stabilized Swaro 10x56...
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