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Old Saturday 2nd July 2016, 19:20   #26
Binastro
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There are probably several hundred binocular designers worldwide.
Usually after training and working on lens design and general optics.
Probably eyepiece design is most challenging.

Optics is experiencing a flourish at the moment.
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Old Thursday 6th October 2016, 20:10   #27
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Camera Centre UK has the new Vanguard ED IV listed on eBay for $500 USD

"THE BEST BINOCULAR THAT VANGUARD HAS EVER PRODUCED." ENDEAVOR ED IV

Enhance your viewing experience with the best Endeavor ED binocular series that Vanguard has ever produced. The innovative pairing of Premium HOYA ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass and SK-15 Prisms allow master birders and outdoorsman to experience nature in a totally new dimension.

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Old Friday 7th October 2016, 08:52   #28
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Ah, fourth dimension; i wondered what IV stood for!
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Old Thursday 27th October 2016, 09:37   #29
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Noted: a UK supplier offering the ED IV:
http://www.feathersoptics.co.uk/vang...rEDIV_8x42.php
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Old Sunday 30th October 2016, 01:16   #30
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Camera Centre UK has the new Vanguard ED IV listed on eBay for $500 USD

"THE BEST BINOCULAR THAT VANGUARD HAS EVER PRODUCED." ENDEAVOR ED IV

Enhance your viewing experience with the best Endeavor ED binocular series that Vanguard has ever produced. The innovative pairing of Premium HOYA ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass and SK-15 Prisms allow master birders and outdoorsman to experience nature in a totally new dimension.
Looks like the Tract Toric has some stiff competition.

3. KILLER DEAL: Vanguard Endeavor ED IV
Score: 86.3 • $499 • vanguardworld.us • Specs: 8x42 • 5.8x5" • 28.8 oz. • 19mm eye relief • 5.25mm exit pupil • 377' FOV • 5.9' close focus

Lowdown: This was a surprise. Priced on the bubble between the mid and low range, there was no reason for us to think the Endeavor ED IV would hang with models costing $300 to $500 more. But it did—and in many of the categories that matter most to hunters, including resolution, image quality, and low-light performance. The Endeavor pulled fine detail from both sun and shade, and delivered a clean, immersive picture. Another open-bridge model with a soft rubber coating, it too feels good in the hand. The focus wheel is big and smooth, and the diopter adjustment locks. The Endeavor did fall slightly behind the other top contenders for design and build and finished in the middle of the pack for weather resistance, but at this price, it’s a versatile, quality hunting tool and a standout value.

http://www.foxnews.com/great-outdoor...and-rated.html
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Old Friday 4th November 2016, 08:37   #31
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I ordered one from Feathers Optics sunday and it arrived in the Netherlands yesterday, great service.

I had compared a few different bins before. I really liked the Eden XP 8x42 for its brightness and sharpness, but not its build quality, so I went for a more sturdy one. At the end the Zeiss Terra 8x42 or Vanguard Endeavor EDII 8x42 where the remaining ones. What I really liked about the Vanguard was its amazing sharpness right to the edges in comparison with other bins in the same or higher price class, the magnesium, very solid build and its open bridge design for a better grip. Both the Zeiss and Vanguard have fast focus wheels (1 turn for the Zeiss, 3/4 of a turn for the Vanguard) which I really like for following little birds going through trees and bushes. I sometimes found the Vanguard a little bit too fast (or maybe the depth of view is too narrow), making it sometimes a bit harder to focus exactly to the milimeter, giving sometimes a tad sharper impression with the Zeiss, but maybe the Vanguard focus wheel is just something you have to learn and get used too. Other than that, there weren't explicit advantages on the Zeiss, although the Vanguard doesn't have dielectric coatings, so room for improvement there.

That's when I heard about the Vanguard Endeavor IV being almost released. This one did have dielectric coatings, would be priced higher and considered more of a higher class then being the successor of the EDII and I found out that the EDIV was cheaper in the UK than the EDII was in the Netherlands. So it looked like a no-brainer and I ordered it.

I really have to check it out some more outside in daylight, because yesterday it was already dark and I could only test it inside. What was a disappointment is that its focus wheel is much slower now, needing almost 1.5 turn between both ends. The wheel also feels a bit too stiff, but maybe it will loosen up after using it for a while. The focus wheel is nice and big and the whole bin is very well designed, although being a bit heavy. But you really get the feel of a high quality product, being able to withstand rough weather and a bump or 2.

I checked it a little bit yesterday inside and while comparing it with the Eden XP I got the same feeling from when I compared the EDII with the Zeiss, even though the focus wheel of the Vanguard IV is much slower. I was turning the focus wheel more back and forward to find the sweetspot of the sharpness, the Eden felt spot on faster an seemed a little bit sharper because of it. But I have to test it more to really make a judgment about this. Maybe the depth of view is very narrow with the Vanguard which makes it harder to really get the focus point at the right milimeter or maybe it's just a thing of personal taste, leading into experiencing a better control with one focuswheel than the other.
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Old Friday 4th November 2016, 09:11   #32
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DutchSparrow,

Thanks for the comments so far. I'd be interested in what you make of it in further comparisons.

I rather like the fast focus of the EDII as well, but I understand it isn't to everyone's taste, so I'd guess it's a deliberate design change. In strictly optical terms, the depth of field will be identical for all 8x binoculars, but there may be perceptive differences with field curvature etc.. It's a long time since I tried the Eden XP 8x42. I know at the time I found a small problem with effective resolution at certain light levels. The Terras have appeared a little variable to me as well. It might be something to look out for in your comparisons. The EDIV should be brighter (higher luminosity) than the EDII, XP and Terra, but sometimes the colour balance can lead to different opinions of the relative 'brightness'. I'd be interested in what you make of that.

Thanks,

David

Last edited by typo : Saturday 5th November 2016 at 07:49.
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Old Saturday 5th November 2016, 12:03   #33
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I couldn't get used to its focusing mechanism, being slower than the EDII and Terra. I went back to the store where I compared that EDII and Terra and other binoculars. I compared those again and I had the same feeling I had the first time, which I also had when I compared the ED IV to the Eden XP. Focusing is not very precise, i keep turning the focussing wheel back and forward, searching for that sweet spot of sharpness. When sharp it is a very very good product, but with the Zeiss Terra, a very good product as well, I get the image sharp quick. It performs much better in that aspect, and that's why I bought that one, even though I find the view of the ED II and IV better with its very good edge sharpness.

I didn't compare the EDIV at the same time as the EDII and Terra, but i didn't found it brighter than the Eden XP and I found the Terra not brighter than the EDII, differences in this aspect are very small.

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Old Saturday 5th November 2016, 15:34   #34
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Thank you for the additional comments. 1.5 turns may not be your preference, but it shouldn't be the cause of the focussing difficulty you describe. Was there some free play, a dead spot where you turn and nothing happens? Unfortunately that isn't as rare as it should be.

David
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Old Monday 7th November 2016, 11:57   #35
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That's true, I had the focussing problem with both vanguards and one has 0,75 turn and the other 1.5. 1.5 is too slow for me, but that is another downside with those binoculars for me.

I don't know what causes it, but the Zeiss didn't have it, so, combined with the rest of its quality, that was enough for me to pick the Zeiss.
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Old Tuesday 8th November 2016, 10:47   #36
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Hello
But truely there is too much difference between the ED II and EDIV ? Any know this question?
Thanks
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Old Sunday 4th December 2016, 14:25   #37
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This is the first "sort of" review of the EDIV I have seen

http://www.onestopnature.co.uk/Optic...vor-ED-IV-8x42

I highlight this quote

"The ED IV features sharp optics right across the field of view. It certainly compares favourably with other binoculars at this price point but it is also noticably brighter and a shade sharper than the ED II which this binocular replaces. "


Are there any other reviews of substance out there!
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Old Sunday 4th December 2016, 17:59   #38
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At the end of September I was told a review sample was about to be shipped to me, but it never arrived and I wasn't given a reason. I don't know if it was the same for the others on their list? Someone might have to buy one.

David

Last edited by typo : Sunday 4th December 2016 at 18:05.
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Old Monday 12th December 2016, 10:57   #39
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Thumbs up EDIV -- I've got one here!

Quote:
Originally Posted by typo View Post
At the end of September I was told a review sample was about to be shipped to me, but it never arrived and I wasn't given a reason. I don't know if it was the same for the others on their list? Someone might have to buy one.

David
I've had a pair of 10x42 Endeavor EDIV for review on the Ireland's Wildlife site since October, and whatever the foibles reported here with initial samples, it looks like Vanguard got a lot right with the production model.

The ergonomics are superb and optically they're a definite step up from the already impressive EDII. Bright, sharp image right across a pleasingly wide and immersive field of view. Very good low light performance... which must be down to the new SK15 prisms, because I asked about dielectric coatings and the head of Vanguard UK stated categorically that there are " No dielectric coatings on any of our prism systems… yet".

They do perform very well in low light -- and although they fall short of my 10x42 Swaros in terms of brightness as the light fades, they continue to deliver plenty of detail and good colour and contrast. The focus is a bit stiffer than it's predecessors, but not uncomfortably so, and for me the 1.5 turn focusing mechanism is an improvement. I found it easy to overshoot focus with both the ED and EDII -- not so with the EDIV.

Everything just feels like an improvement. It feels as if Vanguard has been listening to its end users / reviewers here, making lots of little changes. Seemingly insignificant things... like losing the clip system on the neckstrap (does any birder really use those?), so that now you can actually shorten the strap so the bins sit on your chest, not around your waist... and adding hydrophobic coatings on the external lens surfaces... add up to deliver a much more satisfying all-round user experience.

I'm still not about to trade my Swaros in for a pair of EDIV -- but I can genuinely say that this is the first Vanguard binocular I'd seriously consider as a contender if I was in the market.

I'll be posting a full review to the Ireland's Wildlife site soon, and have a competition running until midnight on Thursday to win a brand new pair direct from Vanguard in time for Christmas.

I'm not going to post the link to the forum, but you'll be able to find it if you want to.

Cheers,

Calvin!
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Old Monday 12th December 2016, 12:39   #40
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Calvin,

Your comments certainly whet my optical appetite but your review is not yet up, so I will wait to read it.

Have you reviewed the Nikon monarch HG which, at about twice the cost, should be significantly better, but I wonder if it is - is one in your review pipeline?
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Old Monday 12th December 2016, 13:25   #41
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Originally Posted by The-Wanderer View Post
Calvin,

Your comments certainly whet my optical appetite but your review is not yet up, so I will wait to read it.

Have you reviewed the Nikon monarch HG which, at about twice the cost, should be significantly better, but I wonder if it is - is one in your review pipeline?
Not yet, no. The only Nikons I've reviewed on the site to date are the 8x42 EDG binocular and the excellent little ED50 fieldscope -- both back in April 2013. I must get on to them again. Thanks for the reminder.

I'll try and get the full EDIV review up on the site as soon as I can.

Cheers,

Calvin!
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Old Monday 12th December 2016, 15:29   #42
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Calvin,

I knew you were on the original reviewer list and wondered if Vanguard had changed their mind. Just me then

When they first shipped and were recalled around March Ian told me the ED IV didn't have dielectric coatings then. That story had changed by August at Birdfair and they have subsequently claimed 90% transmission. As far as I understand SK15 glass would only give a percent or so difference in transmission at 550nm which wouldn't be detectable. I don't think 90% is achievable with silver coated prisms. Interesting if the story has changed again.

I know there were a few ergonomic changes which I rather liked, but in the few minutes I had with it I wasn't spotting much visual difference from the original ED. Something I intended to check more thoroughly.

Look forward to reading your full review.

David
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Old Monday 12th December 2016, 18:16   #43
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David,

Silver coated prisms can get pretty bright.

Allbinos review of the Nikon HGL 8x32 DCF has a graph in it showing that it has over 90% transmission albeit most of that is in the green/red area of the spectrum but it does get well into the 90s. It is ranked #4 by Allbinos with the Nikon 8x32 EDG getting the #1 ranking in the 8x32 class. The EDG has Di-Electric prisms and its graph shows lower transmission than the 8x32 HGL.

http://www.allbinos.com/187-binocula..._8x32_DCF.html

I used my LXL (HGL) 8x32 binocular for years; since about 2006, and I can tell you that it is quite bright. I still have it. I took it out today and used it for a short time. Today is an overcast day where I live with some snow squalls passing through. I was looking into the undergrowth and canopy of the woods off my deck and I am still impressed at how bright it is. It was much brighter than my Swarovski 8x30 SLC (It was made in 2010) which I gave to my son.

Bob
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Old Monday 12th December 2016, 19:42   #44
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Bob,

I've only managed to try the HGL a couple of times but I found it a very likable binocular. I try not to comment on brightness perception as it doesn't seem to have much to do with peak transmission, but at the time I remember a FL and ELSV appeared brighter, and so did the EDG. However, I do know appearances can change markedly with the illuminating light.

Reflectance obviously varies with the wavelength but also with the angle of incidence. Maximum daylight visual sensitivity is around 550nm. Looking at multiple spectra for protected silver mirrors at different angles, reflectance is typically at 95 to 96%. Dielectric mirror coatings vary enormously in quality, but can exceed 99.5% for specific wavelengths (and angles). In a high quality binocular transmission at 550nm would be around 4% lower for silver than dielectric. The best SP models would be around 93% which would put the potential maximum for silver at 89%. The difference between silver and dielectric may be a little less in the red but much larger in the blue.

Arek has said his older plots should only be viewed for relative transmittance, not absolute value but it's worth pointing out that his comparatively recent data for the silver prismed Endeavour ED II x42s were both under 85% at 550nm.

David

Last edited by typo : Tuesday 13th December 2016 at 07:20. Reason: Clarification
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Old Tuesday 13th December 2016, 09:08   #45
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David,

Silver coated prisms can get pretty bright.

Allbinos review of the Nikon HGL 8x32 DCF has a graph in it showing that it has over 90% transmission albeit most of that is in the green/red area of the spectrum but it does get well into the 90s. It is ranked #4 by Allbinos with the Nikon 8x32 EDG getting the #1 ranking in the 8x32 class. The EDG has Di-Electric prisms and its graph shows lower transmission than the 8x32 HGL.

http://www.allbinos.com/187-binocula..._8x32_DCF.html

I used my LXL (HGL) 8x32 binocular for years; since about 2006, and I can tell you that it is quite bright. I still have it. I took it out today and used it for a short time. Today is an overcast day where I live with some snow squalls passing through. I was looking into the undergrowth and canopy of the woods off my deck and I am still impressed at how bright it is. It was much brighter than my Swarovski 8x30 SLC (It was made in 2010) which I gave to my son.

Bob
Indeed, binoculars sporting silver coated prisms can deliver a very bright image. The Meoptas I've tried -- the superb little Meostar B1 8x32, and the chunky but optically outstanding Meostar B1 10x42 HD -- both perform really well in low light, and both sport silver-coated prisms -- as I presume do bins like the classic Leica Trinovid 8x32s that a birding friend of mine swears by.

All other things being equal I guess dielectric coatings on the prisms should result in a brighter image, but as we all know, other things are NEVER equal when it comes to optics .

There also seems to be quite a disparity between perceived brightness in the field (which, lets face it, is all most birders are interested in) and measured transmission levels under lab conditions. Things like colour, contrast and shifting ambient light conditions all impact our perception of brightness. It's one of the trickiest things to assess when you're writing a hands-on review -- and I spend ages switching between bins comparing and contrasting different subjects in different light trying to get a "feel" for how they perform over time.

I'm sure my neighbours think I'm nuts when they see me standing in the front garden at twilight with four or five pairs of bins dangling from various appendages...

... they may have a point!
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Old Tuesday 13th December 2016, 09:10   #46
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Thumbs up

And now for the science bit:

Quote:
Originally Posted by typo View Post
Bob,

I've only managed to try the HGL a couple of times but I found it a very likable binocular. I try not to comment on brightness perception as it doesn't seem to have much to do with peak transmission, but at the time I remember a FL and ELSV appeared brighter, and so did the EDG. However, I do know appearances can change markedly with the illuminating light.

Reflectance obviously varies with the wavelength but also with the angle of incidence. Maximum daylight visual sensitivity is around 550nm. Looking at multiple spectra for protected silver mirrors at different angles, reflectance is typically at 95 to 96%. Dielectric mirror coatings vary enormously in quality, but can exceed 99.5% for specific wavelengths (and angles). In a high quality binocular transmission at 550nm would be around 4% lower for silver than dielectric. The best SP models would be around 93% which would put the potential maximum for silver at 89%. The difference between silver and dielectric may be a little less in the red but much larger in the blue.
Phew!
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Old Tuesday 13th December 2016, 09:52   #47
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Calvin,

I knew you were on the original reviewer list and wondered if Vanguard had changed their mind. Just me then
There was a lot going on with the marketing team as I recall -- guess I just pestered them at the right time .

Quote:
Originally Posted by typo View Post
When they first shipped and were recalled around March Ian told me the ED IV didn't have dielectric coatings then. That story had changed by August at Birdfair and they have subsequently claimed 90% transmission.

As far as I understand SK15 glass would only give a percent or so difference in transmission at 550nm which wouldn't be detectable. I don't think 90% is achievable with silver coated prisms. Interesting if the story has changed again.
That email from Ian stating that there are no dielectric coatings on any of Vanguard's prism systems was from the 17 October.

Quote:
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I know there were a few ergonomic changes which I rather liked, but in the few minutes I had with it I wasn't spotting much visual difference from the original ED. Something I intended to check more thoroughly.
I'd say it's still evolution more than design revolution -- but whereas the EDII was essentially just an ED in different pyjamas, the EDIV seems to be more than that.

The hinges are chunkier, the focus wheel is bigger, it's a shade shorter in the barrel, the exposed metal running down the barrels between the hinges lends it a more sophisticated, premium look and it feels really good in the hand.

The differences are subtle... it's still a dual hinge roof prism that builds on the foundation of its predecessor... but it feels more like a redesign than a tweak.

I know you can't really get it from a photo, but here are all three Endeavors side-by-side for comparison: ED left, EDII centre, EDIV right.
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Old Tuesday 13th December 2016, 09:54   #48
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Eeek... don't let my wife see that photo or she'll be getting me to power-wash the patio outside my office!
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Old Tuesday 13th December 2016, 14:36   #49
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The picture in post #47 shows that the ED IV's diopter mechanism is now integrated with the focus wheel, previously it was located on the right eyepiece. That is a big difference.

The diopter setting wheel is located at the objective's end of the focus wheel. At this location it is more convenient if you can set it by touch by pushing it in and turning it rather than fiddling around and turning it with your thumb and finger.

Bob

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Old Tuesday 13th December 2016, 18:54   #50
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The picture in post #47 shows that the ED IV's diopter mechanism is now integrated with the focus wheel, previously it was located on the right eyepiece. That is a big difference.

The diopter setting wheel is located at the objective's end of the focus wheel. At this location it is more convenient if you can set it by touch by pushing it in and turning it rather than fiddling around and turning it with your thumb and finger.

Bob
Yes, sorry Bob... should have mentioned that. Of course the dioptre being incorporated into the central body / top hinge is one of the bigger differences (along with the new prisms) -- the knurled dial is lockable, you click it out to adjust it and then click it back in to lock it into position.
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