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Old Monday 30th October 2017, 19:07   #1
steppsch
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Low priced, compact spotting scope needed

Hi to everyone,

i'm a new member in this forum and a beginner birdwatcher from germany.
I'm looking for a compact (up to 50 mm objective lens diameter) and low priced (up to 350 $ / 350 EUR / 300 GBP), angled beginner spotting scope which i can carry with me when i am hiking or cycling.

After visiting a few sites on the internet i got the following three alternatives:

1) KOWA TSN-501
2) HAWKE Endurance 12-36x50
3) Minox MD 50 W

Additionally i saw the Nikon ED 50 which actually is out of my budget, but if the quality of this spotting scope is much better than the Kowa, Hawke or Minox, it would think about spending a few Euros more.

Can anybody recommend one of these spotting scopes or are there alternatives? It would be nice if i can do a bit digiscoping with the scope too.

Thank you!

Last edited by steppsch : Monday 30th October 2017 at 19:18.
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Old Monday 30th October 2017, 19:16   #2
jring
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Hi,

first of all, welcome to BF.

I was able to have a look through the new 501 at BTM and liked the view, especially considering weight and price - 40x was quite usable. I don't know the others.

Joachim
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Old Thursday 2nd November 2017, 23:04   #3
mayoayo
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The Nikon ED50 is much better than the Minox MD 50..I compared both side by side,and the Nikon was in another league..sharper,brighter,everything...the Nikon was mine and had a fix power,wide angle ocular,while the Minox had a fixed zoom,with quite a narrow view..comparison aside,the Minox was very compact and light,and the image was ok.Overall impression was fine but no wow factor at all
There is actually an Opticron MM2 50 for sale in the forum at a very atractive price,although it is a US seller,so maybe not worth the shipping ,,That model should be a contender and price ,if you can find one,should be low,since they introduced the MM3 ,now waterproof....
I would do some research for that model,,and perhaps the New celestron Hummingbird ED models....
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Old Saturday 4th November 2017, 01:43   #4
jring
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Hi,

if it really is an MM2, it is quite different from the current models MM3 and MM4 and not comparable,

I had a Hummingbird beside the Kowa 501 and liked the Kowa better - although this might well have been due to sample variation.

Joachim
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Old Saturday 4th November 2017, 04:23   #5
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My mistake,I meant an MM3..there is an MM3 with eyepiece for sale in the classifieds ,at a very good price...


The MM2 had two versions,an ED and a standard,with a collapsible body design,..The ED was probably a decent little scope.Vixen sold the same model with the Geoma series
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Old Saturday 4th November 2017, 10:13   #6
steppsch
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Thank you both for your opinions and recommendations.
At this point i think that the Minox is out, because i also read a few reviews and opinions about that scope which said that the optics are not comparable to the Nikon ED 50.

The suggestion of you, mayoayo, to look in the "classifieds-thread" for a used scope is a great idea. The suggested opticron looks very nice, but i think a ship to germany is a bit to expansive and a zoom eyepiece would be better for my needs (both backyard scoping and also seabird / lake scoping).

So in the next weeks i'm going to look for a used Nikon ED 50 or Opticron MM3 with a zoom eyepiece or i order a new Kowa TSN 501 (thanks for your opinion, jring) and Hawke for compare them.
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Old Sunday 5th November 2017, 21:09   #7
stu52
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hi how about the Viking compact scopes I own the ED 50 pro scope its super light and small but gives me great results

http://www.vikingoptical.co.uk/produ...compact-scope/
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Old Friday 10th November 2017, 18:15   #8
Alexis Powell
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With respect to price of the Nikon 50ED, at least in the USA, if willing to give up proper warranty, it can be ordered direct from Japan (e.g. conveniently, via Amazon USA) for about half price. An angled or straight body is ~$300 new. Eyepieces can be ordered same way, or else can be found for less on the used market.

--AP
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Old Sunday 12th November 2017, 03:38   #9
mayoayo
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The Viking looks interesting,but a limiting factor is the minimum focus distance of 7m..Nikon for instance has a minimum distance of 3m,giving nice macro possibilities at high power
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