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Old Tuesday 13th November 2007, 21:59   #1
ksbird/foxranch
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Who has used the Bushnell Excursion 8x28?

I have tested the Bushnell 8x42 Bushnell Excursion and wasn't impressed @ $114. But if the 8x28 is good and now selling for $85 delivered, then it could be a great bin for kids. I just got a pair of Yosemite 6x30s for kids and usually let them use the Zeiss Diafun, but the Diafun isn't phase coated and the Excursion 8x28 is supposed to be phase coated. There are lightweight 8x30 porros and I recently got a pair of (identical???) porro Brookstone 8x42s and the Meade 8x42 Safaris. The image quality is fantastic and BVD really liked them too. They are pretty lightweight but not like some of the German or even Asian 8x30s.

But the wide grip and large interpupillary distances make the lightweight 8x30s a bit large for kids. High quality opera glasses in the 3x-5x range are good for really little kids. I often go back to my collection of 10-12 degree AFV 7x35 ultrawides for kids 7-11 yo, but these ultrawide binoculars are showing up less often on Ebay and so most of the closets in America may have been cleaned out and they won't be easy to find any more. Something lightweight and waterproof for kids but with more power than the 6x30s would be useful. If you have actually used the 8x28 Bushnell Excursion, what did you think of the image quality.
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Old Wednesday 14th November 2007, 03:29   #2
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I had the 10x28 for a week. The build was OK, though we had one person report a broken pair, focus knob gave up. 10x optics was poor, small sweet spot.

I think the phase coating does not add much here, they are pretty much your standard 100 dollar 8x28. Nothing spectacular. I think Nikon Sportstar 8x25 will get you almost the same.

Go for the lightest 8x30 for the kids.
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Old Wednesday 14th November 2007, 03:35   #3
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Quote:
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but the Diafun isn't phase coated
Actually, the Diafun is phase-coated (and always has been).

--AP
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Old Wednesday 14th November 2007, 13:23   #4
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Diafun phase coated ??

Alexis, thanks for the info about the Diafun. We got two pairs here new, during a store closure deal last year because the Diafun was so lightweight and that made it a good bin for kids. I was unable to find a word about phase coating in the paperwork that came with the bins. The impressed letters in the Diafuns just show "T*" and "B". I have a slightly older pair of Zeiss 8x30s that show "T*", "B" and "P" impressions in the rubber coating which I thought indicated phase coatings.

The Better View Desired review of the Diafun seemed to dance all around the phase coating issue and then they jumped right up and said the comparable Pentax roofer Was phase coated so I had to wonder.

http://www.betterviewdesired.com/Roo...rs-for-500.php

I had heard before that some Diafuns were phase coated and some weren't and I didn't know which model I had. But if there is some location on the web where I can read about the Diafun's phase coatings I would appreciate it if I could read up on it. That could make my interest in the 8x28 Bushnell Excursions moot. Thank you
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Old Wednesday 14th November 2007, 14:02   #5
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That is a pretty old review, so the Diafun part still applies, but the Fujinon are now phase coated.
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Old Wednesday 14th November 2007, 20:22   #6
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I keep a pair in my camper .
I .dont think they are bad considering the price.Better than the Nikon actions i keep in the truck. At least they came with a decent strap & lens caps .
More than o can say for some that cost 10 times more.
Brian.
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Old Wednesday 14th November 2007, 23:11   #7
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Originally Posted by ksbird/foxranch View Post
I had heard before that some Diafuns were phase coated and some weren't and I didn't know which model I had. But if there is some location on the web where I can read about the Diafun's phase coatings I would appreciate it if I could read up on it. That could make my interest in the 8x28 Bushnell Excursions moot.
ALL Zeiss roof-prisms have been phase-coated since it was introduced to the "Classic" models in 1988 or shortly thereafter, but for some reason Zeiss dropped the P* labeling after the Design Selection series. If you take a look at the current Conquest and FL models, for example, you'll see no P* label. The T* label has been retained through all of this.

The Bushnell Excursion is a mediocre bino regardless of its coatings.

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Old Saturday 17th November 2007, 02:15   #8
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You were looking for a small roof prism? How about
http://www.eagleoptics.com/index.asp?pid=4653
we are all waiting to hear anything on that. It may be good, may be spectacular. Guaranteed slightly better than Excursion.
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Old Saturday 2nd August 2008, 03:32   #9
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Still have not been able to see any Furys.

I managed to see an 8x28 and 8x32 Excursion. Both get my approval for the optics. A world of difference from the 10x28, which was I guess too hard to make. The guy was not willing to give me a discount on the display model. The rubber outer part of the eye cup was sliding off. It is just glued on, over a proper mechanism. I would have glued it on myself for 10% off. He had no other pair in stock.

The 8x28s are visibly better than any 8x25 Nikon or Bushnell on most shelves, excluding Nikon L series.

The 10x32 is probably the better buy if you only need one of these, as it is almost the same size, not much more weight.

Looking at the specs, the 8x28 Fury is no match for th 8x28 Excursion, whereas at 8x32 I would lean towards the Fury, maybe better overall quality. But I have several 8x32s.
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Old Saturday 2nd August 2008, 17:24   #10
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OK, I have the 8x28 now. Went to a little wildlife area and spotted a wood thrush right away. Good sign.

My roofers family now
8x28 Bushnell Excursion
8x32 Bushnell Legend
8x32 Eagle Optics ranger
10x42 Monarch
10x43 Pentax DCF

I should take a family portrait. I put the Excursions in an old 8x32 case, the case they gave is too bulky. I even left the strap off.

The 8x28 will be my grab a pair or will spend some time in the trunk of my car at first.
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Old Saturday 9th August 2008, 16:29   #11
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Here is the 8x28 in my waist pouch. I left the strap off to be compact. I use it this way a few times a summer, like canoeing. In winter it fits in my coat poacket. My 8x32s do not.
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Old Sunday 18th January 2009, 05:40   #12
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I, too, have the Bushnell Excursion 8x28. Actually, I bought them for my wife as a Christmas present for when we go hiking. Bins are good, but the case is terrible, which I didn't realize until I got them home and out of the box. (Tried a display model in the store -- didn't see the case til later.)

Does anybody know of a decent case I can buy somewhere for this bino?

Thanks!
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Old Saturday 24th September 2011, 19:44   #13
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Received a Bushnell Excursion 8x28 a couple of days ago. So far I like the price vs value ratio, the form factor, the big FOV , the decent eye relief and the build quality.

The image is sharp and quite easy on the eye but in overcast weather the color representation goes towards red/purple/magenta. I could almost call it a tint.

At present this is the one of my bins with the worst color representation. (the IOR Valdada was extremely green , the Swift Newport very cold/blue and the Zeiss Notarem very brownish/golden, but I own none of these anymore)

Anyway, when the sun's up, the tint is nearly gone, as far as I can see. The color balance is a lot better then.

The straylight in the lower part of the image, that shows when looking towards the sun is there throughout a wide range of different angles.
But luckily, it can be controlled by looking through the bin in another angle, i. e. look into the eyepieces in an oblique angle from above and letting the eyebrows rest on the upper part of the eyecups.

All in all, a nice and handy backup bin that is compact, yet not too small to handle with my fairly big hands. I also found that if I remove the plate covering the tripod thread, the grip gets even more comfortable.
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Old Sunday 25th September 2011, 02:33   #14
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I had my pair out for the first time yesterday for ~4hrs at our local seaside bird park. Blue skies with sun high in the sky making for harsh reflections off the water. Fortunately, not much haze so conditions were ideal but I did not bring a reference binocular to A-B compare.

My initial impressions of the optics are that there is no significant spherical aberration as demostrated by its precise plane of focus. This binocular is either clearly focused or it is not. No mushy "zone of confusion" with this one. This is really quite an accomplishment for an optic this small I think as SA is the downfall of most compact optics.

Chromatic aberration is virtually nil and color temp is appears neutral, maybe slightly warm, BUT contrast and saturation can be affected by some glare issues. Best views come with sun over your shoulder naturally.

Pincushion distortion is quite mild with field curvature ~average.

IMO, the worst issue is some annoying vignetting. This is manifested by the fuzzy fieldstop and the weak tea-like tint at the edge of field. I measure clear aperture of both barrels to be 26mm. I cannot measure the exit pupil with submillimeter precision but is appears smaller than 3.5mm when compared to my Nikon 10x35 EII (which has been measured). FoV/magnification seems to be in line with the measured 8x Legend Ultra HD.

I also detect what may be a prism "leak" as my sample has little bars of light at the 4 o'clock position at the edge of the right eyelens and the 9 o'clock position on the left. Also the edges of the objective lenses seem not to be blackened and combined with the somewhat shiny paint of the barrel/baffles allows for some rather strong reflections at the inside edge.

As for the ergonomics, I found them hard to hold and keep steady at first but as the day progressed I adapted and they felt better in hand. The snap-in strap holders protrude too much though, poking the fleshy part between my thumb and index finger interfering with my natural grip, and their light weight still makes holding them ROCK STEADY an effort in concentration. But I wanted a lighter weight binocular so a less than steady view may be price I pay.

Build quality seems solid and the diopter ring, while not locking, has enough friction that it does seem to stay fixed. Strangely, I have to set it slightly POSITIVE whereas all my other bins are set slightly NEGATIVE.

Close focus is ~1.4m and to reach infinity requires 1 1/4 turn of the wheel COUNTERCLOCKWISE. So slightly faster than the Legend 8x42 Ultra HD. FWIW, I already seemed to have lost the tripod adapter cap. Guess I did not tighten it down enough after a quick peek.

AR multi-coatings are so-so. I can still clearly make out my facial features reflecting back when staring into the objectives, unlike a Nikon EII or SE which are like staring into the abyss and are my gold standards, and to a slightly lesser degree the Legend Ultra HDs. For those who make a big deal about such things, all AR coatings reflect back green, while the Legend Ultra HD has one blue amongst the green. The phase coating test colors appear to be the same as the Legend's too.

As for the included accessories, the hardcase is nice as is the over-sized padded strap but it is overkill for this size optic. Kudo's to Bushnell for at least including a stand-alone set of the propietary snap-in holders so you can use another strap.

All that said, this is still probably a VERY good value for US$69 shipped within USA/Canada. As long as you don't look in the direction of the Sun (they warn us about this but we never heed!) the optics are very good, maybe even excellent, across most of the visible field. They will work for my intended use as an inexpensive lightweight, rugged, waterproof backpacking bino BUT I will keep looking for something smaller, lighter, better.

Last edited by RJM : Sunday 25th September 2011 at 06:04. Reason: updated clear apertue
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Old Sunday 25th September 2011, 04:57   #15
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Nice writeups. I, too, have become fond of this little binocular. It is another true gem in inexpensive binoculars.

Like RJM, I a going to stick with it until I can find something smalle and better optically for a reasonable price.
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Old Sunday 25th September 2011, 12:40   #16
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I can only conform to RJMs findings. The field stop is a bit fuzzy and I think this issue has some connection to the lack of edge blackening/baffling.
The shiny-green AR coatings may explain its magenta tint in overcast weather.
When too much green color is reflected away the magenta will take over, I guess.

Focus speed is very adequate IMO and this makes the focusing very simple. I agree it snaps into focus but still I'm not overshooting focus like I often did with the Minox HG 8x33.

Yes, this bin is of very good value. I found mine from a British eBay seller so no VAT or customs .
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Old Monday 26th September 2011, 03:42   #17
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Well I certainly can't confirm your findings re: a magenta tint in dim/overcast conditions! Mine arrived during a typhoon here last week and even in today's gray/gloomy skies I still find colors quite natural. FWIW, I don't think we can assume much about the reflected tint of the coatings other to say a different coating material was used on that surface.
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Old Monday 26th September 2011, 07:24   #18
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Quote:
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Well I certainly can't confirm your findings re: a magenta tint in dim/overcast conditions! Mine arrived during a typhoon here last week and even in today's gray/gloomy skies I still find colors quite natural. FWIW, I don't think we can assume much about the reflected tint of the coatings other to say a different coating material was used on that surface.
I'm not the only one to see that tint. A minute ago I checked against a bluish grey sky, and through the Excursion it was magentaish grey.
Not so while the sun shines, luckily.

Concerning the color of the AR coatings: The color of the reflected light does indeed show what wavelength is not being transmitted, but lost in reflection.
Should all the surfaces of all the lenses have that same reflective properties, the color tint might be quite apparent.
But in good optical instruments, the total transmission of different wavelengths should be carefully calculated and customized to avoid this.
Of course even the phase coating and lens materials play a role in this.

It is not the material the AR coating is made of that determines the color of the rest reflection, because it's built by several layers of contrasting refractive indexes.
It's rather the thickness of the respective layers that determines this.

I've been told, and this is first-hand information, that (spectacle) AR coatings can be made with any reflection color, even white, but the customers are supposed to prefer green. This doesn't affect the transmission performance of a single lens.

Oh, and, there's some info at Wikipedia too. It's quite OK:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antireflection_coating

See second part, for example, and the part about multi-layer interference type.
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Old Monday 26th September 2011, 08:21   #19
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Perhaps since you don't see this tint effect in good light your vision in being "tricked" by the light falloff caused by the vignetting?
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Old Monday 26th September 2011, 12:10   #20
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Er... Nope. Didn't notice any tint when the partly cloud covered sun was setting, even compared to other bins it still looked OK.
I'm quite obsessed with looking through the central part of the optics, and there, no vignetting should be visible.
My Minox BV 8x25 is nowhere nearly as good as the Excursion, but its color representation is at least quite neutral.
The Zeiss FL is extremely neutral, the Fury is almost up with it but with a very slight tendency towards a warmer/yellower tone. As far as I can remember, the Papilio is also quite neutral.

I also used to own a Monarch X 10.5x45, and like many other Nikon models, it displays a somewhat magenta/reddish tone, I would say about half of the magenta tint in the Excursion.
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Old Monday 26th September 2011, 13:11   #21
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I find the Excursions to have a very definite purple tint. A most peculiar binocular really, too big and heavy to be a compact but at 28mm not bright enough for full time use. Nevertheless they are very sharp indeed, completely surprising for the price in fact.
Anyone know if the rest of the Excursion or Excursion EX range are this sharp?
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Old Thursday 29th September 2011, 18:57   #22
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OK, I have the 8x28 now. Went to a little wildlife area and spotted a wood thrush right away. Good sign.

My roofers family now
8x28 Bushnell Excursion
GONE 8x32 Bushnell Legend
GONE 8x32 Eagle Optics ranger
GONE 10x42 Monarch
10x43 Pentax DCF

I should take a family portrait. I put the Excursions in an old 8x32 case, the case they gave is too bulky. I even left the strap off.

The 8x28 will be my grab a pair or will spend some time in the trunk of my car at first.
Still have the 8x28s and they get some use. I fixed the eye cup so that they are permanently out.
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Old Tuesday 13th December 2011, 20:34   #23
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Just in case anybody wants to sell one.:)

http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=218214
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Old Friday 16th December 2011, 22:37   #24
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I did receive the Bushnell 8x28 Excursion today from Tom [Lilcrazy2] on here. He gave me a great deal on this binocular. I must say I really like this small overachieving binocular, esp. for the price. It is overcast today and I did notice the slight reddish cast, no problem and I am happy with this binocular, very sharp. This is a Christmas gift from my wife, so I put in back in the box.

Thanks Tom!
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Old Saturday 17th December 2011, 02:12   #25
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Steve,

Good choice. I let the future-Mrs. use my 8x28 on a trip up to Hawk Mountain back in October. She loved the size and handling. The wide field of view and large sweet spot also made it very easy to use for the limited amount of hawkwatching we did that day.
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