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Old Thursday 22nd June 2017, 09:13   #26
Troubador
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Hi Lee,

It sounds like we enjoy the same type of holiday, as I spend as much time looking for reptiles, amphibians and insects, as I do birds.
I don't think an 8x32 would work for me. I actually use my bins in low light fairly regularly, especially as I now have beavers living and breeding not too far from me.
I will be trying the SFs again, maybe the FOV will win me over, but until I can get to Viking Optical, I'll just need to keep reading reviews.
If low light really is a priority then Zeiss HT should be on your list. When the skies over North Uist and Islay go heavy dark slaty grey, HT is the best choice.

Good luck

Lee
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Old Saturday 15th July 2017, 19:12   #27
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So today I spent all morning trying out a whole bunch of binoculars. I was able to rule the Noctivid, the sf and ht. I ended up buying the Swarovski el 8.5x42, even though for awhile I considered buying the sf.

I now have a slight problem. I was so determined to try as many as possible (all 8x), I completely forgot to try the el 10x42. I'm sure if I contact the shop on Monday, I'll be able to go back and compare the 8.5 against the 10x42, but what are peoples' thoughts between the two?

Thanks
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Old Saturday 15th July 2017, 20:00   #28
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Dan Davis, post 27,
I would certainly go for the 8,5x42, in my hands much more stable as the 10x and because of the slightly larger exit pupil also a bit brighter. As far as optical performance and handling comfort is concerned both are good. I have used both frequently, but I always grab the 8,5x certainly on hiking/mountain tours etc. since then especially the 8,5x is easier to hold steady.
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Old Saturday 15th July 2017, 20:17   #29
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Thanks Gijs, how shaky is the 10 though? I don't notice any shake with my Endeavor II.
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Old Saturday 15th July 2017, 20:59   #30
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So today I spent all morning trying out a whole bunch of binoculars. I was able to rule the Noctivid, the sf and ht. I ended up buying the Swarovski el 8.5x42, even though for awhile I considered buying the sf.

I now have a slight problem. I was so determined to try as many as possible (all 8x), I completely forgot to try the el 10x42. I'm sure if I contact the shop on Monday, I'll be able to go back and compare the 8.5 against the 10x42, but what are peoples' thoughts between the two?

Thanks
I prefer the 8.5x (own it). If I would buy a 10x I would go for a Zeiss SF, the view is more comfortable with glasses than the 10x SV and the FOV is bigger.

The 10x42 Swaro SV have a bit more CA than the 8.5x.
8.5x mag is a very good compromise between FOV, brightness magnification. Don't regret it, enjoy it.
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Old Saturday 15th July 2017, 21:01   #31
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Dan Davis, post 29,
If you do some excercise as you do when hiking and certainly when you are walking in mountainous areas , you can have/will have difficulty to keep a 10x binocular steady. Actually there is also very convincing evidence by different studies that natural trembling due to your heart beat etc. decreases the resolution of hand held binoculars at magnifications above 7 or 8x magnification.
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Old Sunday 16th July 2017, 08:19   #32
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Thank you both, but although I'm incredibly happy with my news bins, I still want to compare them to the 10x. It will just give me that piece of mind.

Thanks again
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 01:52   #33
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The 8.5X42 SV IMO the way to go. The 8.5 has little more magnification than a 8X but more FOV than the 10X42. It's a great combination. 10X and above can get a little shaky at different viewing angles and when a little fatigued.

For a one binocular family, I think that's the way to go!
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 05:31   #34
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So today I spent all morning trying out a whole bunch of binoculars. I was able to rule the Noctivid, the sf and ht. I ended up buying the Swarovski el 8.5x42, even though for awhile I considered buying the sf.

I now have a slight problem. I was so determined to try as many as possible (all 8x), I completely forgot to try the el 10x42. I'm sure if I contact the shop on Monday, I'll be able to go back and compare the 8.5 against the 10x42, but what are peoples' thoughts between the two?

Thanks
Nice to get the 8x, less shake and wider field of vision I reckon. BTW do you mind sharing your thoughts of why you didn' t go with the Noctivids, Zeiss HT and SF? Also did you have any chance of trying the Swaros SLC?
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 09:26   #35
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....I now have a slight problem. I was so determined to try as many as possible (all 8x), I completely forgot to try the el 10x42. I'm sure if I contact the shop on Monday, I'll be able to go back and compare the 8.5 against the 10x42, but what are peoples' thoughts between the two?
Personally I like a 10x magnification but with some important caveats:-
* A 5mm or greater exit pupil (this means a 10x50 SV)
* A 120m @1Km Fov
* Light weight

No such bin exists of course, but I find the 10x50SV to be somehow wide enough Fov wise, and really nice to hold, if somewhat heavy.

There are a few 10x42's that meet the 120m Fov criteria - the Zeiss 10x42 SF, the Nikon 10x42 MHG, and the Vortex 10x42 Razor HD. These 3 also have the benefit of nice light weight. If I was going to compromise on my EP criteria, it would be for one of these.

I really don't like the 10x42 SV all that much compared to the 10x50 SV, or the 8.5x42 SV, mainly because it ticks none of my boxes. I prefer the hand filling grip of the 50mm which I find is very steady to hold, and for reference I view wearing glasses, and back the eye cups out by exactly the same smidge on all of them.

The 8.5x42 SV is certainly a great all rounder .....



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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 20:25   #36
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Originally Posted by chill6x6 View Post
The 8.5X42 SV IMO the way to go. The 8.5 has little more magnification than a 8X but more FOV than the 10X42. It's a great combination. 10X and above can get a little shaky at different viewing angles and when a little fatigued.

For a one binocular family, I think that's the way to go!
Thanks Chuck, I am loving the 8.5x42, but I have arranged to go back to the shop this Saturday to compare it to another two binoculars. Although I am starting to think comparing with the 10x42 sv is a waste of time. I do want to try the 10x50 sv, just out of curiosity more than anything. What's your thoughts on your 10x50 sv? Yu didn't actually say in your original post.

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Nice to get the 8x, less shake and wider field of vision I reckon. BTW do you mind sharing your thoughts of why you didn' t go with the Noctivids, Zeiss HT and SF? Also did you have any chance of trying the Swaros SLC?
Sure, although I won't be able to go into the same detail as some on here.
I'll start with the Noctivid - I liked it a lot, optically I thought it was excellent, it was a great looking binocular and it felt good in the hands, but it was also the most expensive one I tried. With the price in mind, I expected it to really stand out from the rest but I didn't think it did, so I decided against it.

Zeiss HT - for the life of me I cannot remember why I decided against this binocular, which is somewhat annoying. I will have a look through it again on Saturday, and get back to you.

Zeiss SF - This binocular was almost the binocular I went home with. I loved the wide FOV, optically I thought it was brilliant and it also was the best fitting binocular for my hands. I spent ages looking through it, then through the SV, then back again. The only thing that put me off was the colour of the image. I thought it had a green tinge to it, and compared to the SV, I didn't like it.


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Originally Posted by Chosun Juan View Post
Personally I like a 10x magnification but with some important caveats:-
* A 5mm or greater exit pupil (this means a 10x50 SV)
* A 120m @1Km Fov
* Light weight

No such bin exists of course, but I find the 10x50SV to be somehow wide enough Fov wise, and really nice to hold, if somewhat heavy.

There are a few 10x42's that meet the 120m Fov criteria - the Zeiss 10x42 SF, the Nikon 10x42 MHG, and the Vortex 10x42 Razor HD. These 3 also have the benefit of nice light weight. If I was going to compromise on my EP criteria, it would be for one of these.

I really don't like the 10x42 SV all that much compared to the 10x50 SV, or the 8.5x42 SV, mainly because it ticks none of my boxes. I prefer the hand filling grip of the 50mm which I find is very steady to hold, and for reference I view wearing glasses, and back the eye cups out by exactly the same smidge on all of them.

The 8.5x42 SV is certainly a great all rounder .....



Chosun
Thanks Chosun,

I'm glad I made the follow up post now, as I feel the 10x42 isn't going to suit my needs. However, my interest in the 10x50 has been ignited again.

You say you find it very steady to hold but this is the one thing that worries me about this binocular. Is it really a binocular for handheld use?
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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 21:53   #37
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Zeiss SF - This binocular was almost the binocular I went home with. I loved the wide FOV, optically I thought it was brilliant and it also was the best fitting binocular for my hands. I spent ages looking through it, then through the SV, then back again. The only thing that put me off was the colour of the image. I thought it had a green tinge to it, and compared to the SV, I didn't like it.
Hi,

the point is - will you be able to notice or even be annoyed by the green tint of the SF if you don't have another pair of bins to compare (yes, the tint is there but you need very good eyes and/or a well thought out measurement technique to see it - remember Tobias Mennle, who did that review linked above is a nature filmmaker by trade and thus might be a bit more sensitive to correct color than most...)?
If not, it might still be an option. Also a high transmission in green is certainly beneficial for low light use as rods are most sensitive around 500nm or green-blue.

Also I would really recommend to have a look at the EDG if you didn't already... preferably being able to compare with others.
Mechanics and optics are probably a notch above the other alphas, design and bragging rights less so...
Some people say the Nikons have a bad transmission... unless they look through one... it's not just only about brightness but about contrast!

I was watching a peregrine falcon nest on a power plant chimney with a group and since the fledglings were visible only occasionally and the adults quite busy too, some interesting discussions and comparisons of all optics on site took place in between...
One gentlemen with an Ultravid HD 10x50 (not sure if plus) remarked about those old Nikon porros (my early model 005 serial # SE 10x42) which I was glad to hand to him to have a look through. His commentary was "Wow this is bright!" and "Where can I buy those?"
Which is probably not true from transmission point of view but the contrast was far better in the SE on that bright day - the image of the Ultravid HD was probably brighter but looked washed out - even when veiling glare was not yet seen. When it was seen, it was in the Ultravid while the SE was unconcerned for as close as I dared to get to the sun...

Joachim

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Old Monday 17th July 2017, 22:12   #38
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Thank you both, but although I'm incredibly happy with my news bins, I still want to compare them to the 10x. It will just give me that piece of mind.

Thanks again
Seems wise to ponder a bit on things.
It's not easy these days selecting an alpha bin, as all of them have their strengths and perhaps weaknesses.

Did you try the Leica 8x42 UVHD-Plus?
If not, they might be worth it, their tinge and contrast might appeal to you if you didn't like the Zeiss SF. And you would get a some of the good leica treats without breaking the bank like a Noctivid.

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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 02:49   #39
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Thanks Chuck, I am loving the 8.5x42, but I have arranged to go back to the shop this Saturday to compare it to another two binoculars. Although I am starting to think comparing with the 10x42 sv is a waste of time. I do want to try the 10x50 sv, just out of curiosity more than anything. What's your thoughts on your 10x50 sv? Yu didn't actually say in your original post.
I like my 10X42 SV. I've had it the longest of any of my Swarovision binoculars. It's served me well for sure. Still like new too. The 10X42 weighs in at 29oz(pre-Field Pro), the 10X50 Field Pro weighs in at 37oz and a larger footprint to boot. I've only had the 10X50 a short time so I'm not sold the 50mm is the cats meow yet. My thoughts on the SV 10X50 is it's larger, heavier, more FOV, and more expensive than the 10X42. I can promise you....37ozs is going to get HEAVY if that's your only/primary binocular.
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 03:27   #40
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....Thanks Chosun,

I'm glad I made the follow up post now, as I feel the 10x42 isn't going to suit my needs. However, my interest in the 10x50 has been ignited again.

You say you find it very steady to hold but this is the one thing that worries me about this binocular. Is it really a binocular for handheld use?
Dan, you mentioned earlier that you are aware that what you would be receiving are personal opinions, and indeed that is true - so in the final analysis the best compromise is going to be what works for you.

The 10x50 SV certainly has an enticing view.

Just to offer more completeness of information, it does fit my large hands very well, and I can hold it very steady. At a kg it is heavy, and so you should think how that will affect your particular styles of use as time goes on - ie. if you also find it nice to hold, and steady to hold, how long will you be able to use it for at a stretch? What about after a strenuous hike up a hill - what then? Do you become fatigued? and how does that affect the steadiness? Also, how will you carry it - do you want a kg hanging around your neck? Will you use a sling? Or a harness?

For comparison I also find the 42mm SV's to be heavier than I would desire in a 42mm binocular. There's not much in it with the 50mm, that's what rules the 10x42 SV out for me - plenty of 'personal' drawbacks and no really tangible advantages.

The other thing to consider with a 10x is the depth of field - it is narrower in the 10x than a 8.5x /8x. .... how will this go when you are doing the more closed in, closer woodland component of your mixed viewing? Bear in mind that the SV focus is not lightning quick.

Along with the 10x50 SV, another bin I would check out in the 10x vs 8.5x question is the NIKON 10x42 MHG. It ticks many boxes - 120m Fov tick, light weight tick (~2/3rds of the 10x50 SV, and ~80% of the 8.5x42 SV). You are going from a ~5mm EP with either of the SV's though down to 4.2mm so factor that into the equation for dusk/dawn and deep shadow viewing. You would have to carefully compare them optically - brightness, depth of field, Chromatic Aberration, glare handling, across the field sharpness, panning, and plain old fit to your face/eyes /ease of use, and see if they match what the SV's offer for you. On the upside the MHG focuser is likely to be noticeably better and faster too, and the cost may be around half of the SV's. You should also consider Warranty and customer support in your Country.

That's my best advice, compare away, and get what compromise ticks the most boxes for you and suits you best. Ideally you would finalize say two selections and purchase them on trial (or hire a 2nd one) and compare them over a week or two, and return the less suitable one. If this is not possible, then compare your purchase carefully with the options along the lines that I have mentioned - good luck! Don't do your head in too much, your 8.5x42 is a fine all rounder.


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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 20:41   #41
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Again, thank you all for your feedback. I really didn't expect buying an alpha binocular would be so tricky!
I have more food for thought, so I have no doubt after my visit to the shop on Saturday, I will be leaving knowing I undoubtedly have the right binocular for me.
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