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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 01:57   #1
denco@comcast.n
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There Can Be Only One!

If you could only have only ONE pair of binoculars for birding and all around use. Which one would it be? You don't have to explain why. Price is not a determining factor.
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 02:11   #2
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For me FIT comes before anything else. Glass I think is no longer an issue as modern binoculars are good enough. As far as power goes I am a 7 power believer. If I could keep steady a 10 power that would be it. Having said all this for me current production would be Leica Ultravid 7x42 HD perfect fit and weight.

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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 02:57   #3
denco@comcast.n
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For me FIT comes before anything else. Glass I think is no longer an issue as modern binoculars are good enough. As far as power goes I am a 7 power believer. If I could keep steady a 10 power that would be it. Having said all this for me current production would be Leica 7x42 HD perfect fit and weight.
Have you tried the Canon IS line? Especially the Canon 10x30 IS or the Canon 10x42 L IS. I like 10x too if you can hold it steady because you can see so much more detail. For me optics come before anything else and I will put up with less than perfect ergonomics to get it. The Canon 10x42 L IS is one of my favorite binoculars now. I got a good deal on a Zeiss 8x56 FL which I get tomorrow(Which is Henry Links favorite binocular) and I think I will write up a comparison of the two called "King of the Beasts". There both heavy suckers but what a view.
I used to like 7x but I discovered I can't see as much detail with less magnification. I had the leica 7x42 BN's and they were better than the 8x32 BN's but I later found out I preferred 8x and above. I want to get up close and personal with the bird.

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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 03:16   #4
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My Swaro SV 8.5x42.

It is very, very good.

I am in fact still rather spooked how much better it is than my other good bins (in contrast and glare suppression).
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 04:36   #5
denco@comcast.n
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My Swaro SV 8.5x42.

It is very, very good.

I am in fact still rather spooked how much better it is than my other good bins (in contrast and glare suppression).
I would like to compare the Swaro SV 8.5x42 to my Zeiss 8x56 FL's. Let's see maybe I could take the Zeiss over to Sportsman's Warehouse where they have the Swarovision. But on the other hand that same salesman is still over there and he know's I never actually buy anything there and he is getting sick of me. You really have to get them outside for a true test though. Let's see could you borrow me your Swarovision's for a couple of weeks?

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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 05:59   #6
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Originally Posted by denco@comcast.n View Post
If you could only have only ONE pair of binoculars for birding and all around use. Which one would it be? You don't have to explain why. Price is not a determining factor.
Since you apparently don't like having just ONE pair of bins yourself, I'm not sure why you are asking me to make "Sophie's Choice".

Am I stranded on a deserted island? Well, if Gilligan was with me, I'd want something mil spec, because he'd probably drop them from a tree, and also WP (down to 5 meters), because he'd definitely drop them in the water.

I wouldn't want an IS bin, otherwise the professor would take it apart and try to use the electronics to make a radio!

I also wouldn't want a bin with poor AR coatings, because then Ginger would use it as a mirror. Or with rubber coatings that looked appetizing or the skipper would eat them. Or with a thin strap that Mary Anne could use to tie her pony tails.

Or one that is a very rare collectible so that Mr. and Mrs. Howell wouldn't want to steal it and have Sotheby's auction it after we were rescued.

If price was truly not a determining factor, then I couldn't be stranded on a deserted island (unless it was with Mariangela Melato, which I wouldn't mind), and I could be as rich as Bill Gates (before he gives his money to charity) or Oprah or J. K. Rowling.

In that case, I'd have a crème de la crème bin made to order for me rather than pick one off the rack like a mere commoner.

Here's what I'd put in my order:

1. Color saturation and contrast of the Nikon LX
2. Smooth panning motion, ergonomics, and sharp edges of the Nikon SE (but w/out the blackouts and vignetting at the edges)
3. Wide FOV like the 8x EII and 7x ED2.
4. Internal focus to keep out the cat hairs.
5. 5mm exit pupils so I could fully utilize them.
6. Best quality ED glass.
7. 19mm of usable ER.
8. Porro II prisms to accommodate the internal focus.
9. Twist up, click stop eyecups that fit my eyes similar to the Swaro SLC.
10. 99.99% TOTAL light transmission.

The configuration should be 8.5x44. And please have it flown in by helicopter to my compound in Côte d'Azur. Yeah, if I got to have only one bin, that should do. :-)

Brock
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 06:15   #7
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Dennis,
I cannot answer, not currently being quite in love with anything enough to marry it. But, I am interested to hear what you will think about the mongo Zeiss. And, if it is optical nirvana, whether the slight increase in "neck factor" over your 8x32 FL will seem worth it.

I can volunteer, however, that I have used nothing lately that makes me as happy as my $135 circum 1960 Hensoldt DF 8x30. By lately I mean a couple of all day birding trips, and my to/from work tote through the canyon for several weeks now (to which the Turkey Vultures have arrived for the summer, the vanguard of seven, just two days ago.). The old coatings are dim and give muted colors, which is a very pretty picture to look at in a way. It's just too dang little to show any CA. The optics are surely as sharp as the Keck 8.4m telescope. I find myself increasingly unhappy with the center focus/diopter adjust system, finding I get the sharpest focus with individually focusing eyepieces. The way the Hensoldt feels in my hands is like God made it just for me. It only weighs 20 ounces, too! My state of the art binoculars don't know what to think. I have also reverted to my old Omega daily-windup wristwatch. Backwards and downward!
Ron

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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 10:26   #8
denco@comcast.n
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Originally Posted by brocknroller View Post
Since you apparently don't like having just ONE pair of bins yourself, I'm not sure why you are asking me to make "Sophie's Choice".

Am I stranded on a deserted island? Well, if Gilligan was with me, I'd want something mil spec, because he'd probably drop them from a tree, and also WP (down to 5 meters), because he'd definitely drop them in the water.

I wouldn't want an IS bin, otherwise the professor would take it apart and try to use the electronics to make a radio!

I also wouldn't want a bin with poor AR coatings, because then Ginger would use it as a mirror. Or with rubber coatings that looked appetizing or the skipper would eat them. Or with a thin strap that Mary Anne could use to tie her pony tails.

Or one that is a very rare collectible so that Mr. and Mrs. Howell wouldn't want to steal it and have Sotheby's auction it after we were rescued.

If price was truly not a determining factor, then I couldn't be stranded on a deserted island (unless it was with Mariangela Melato, which I wouldn't mind), and I could be as rich as Bill Gates (before he gives his money to charity) or Oprah or J. K. Rowling.

In that case, I'd have a crème de la crème bin made to order for me rather than pick one off the rack like a mere commoner.

Here's what I'd put in my order:

1. Color saturation and contrast of the Nikon LX
2. Smooth panning motion, ergonomics, and sharp edges of the Nikon SE (but w/out the blackouts and vignetting at the edges)
3. Wide FOV like the 8x EII and 7x ED2.
4. Internal focus to keep out the cat hairs.
5. 5mm exit pupils so I could fully utilize them.
6. Best quality ED glass.
7. 19mm of usable ER.
8. Porro II prisms to accommodate the internal focus.
9. Twist up, click stop eyecups that fit my eyes similar to the Swaro SLC.
10. 99.99% TOTAL light transmission.

The configuration should be 8.5x44. And please have it flown in by helicopter to my compound in Côte d'Azur. Yeah, if I got to have only one bin, that should do. :-)

Brock
No, actually I am down to ONE pair of binoculars!(Oh, crap I forgot about the Zeiss 8x56 FL I just bought! Make that two.) I went to binoculars anonymous for 6 months and I am happy to say I haven't bought a pair of binoculars in two days so I am getting better! No, Brock I don't want an imaginary dream binocular but something you can buy off the shelf.(or at least order on the internet).

Last edited by denco@comcast.n : Wednesday 23rd March 2011 at 10:44.
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 10:39   #9
denco@comcast.n
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Dennis,
I cannot answer, not currently being quite in love with anything enough to marry it. But, I am interested to hear what you will think about the mongo Zeiss. And, if it is optical nirvana, whether the slight increase in "neck factor" over your 8x32 FL will seem worth it.

I can volunteer, however, that I have used nothing lately that makes me as happy as my $135 circum 1960 Hensoldt DF 8x30. By lately I mean a couple of all day birding trips, and my to/from work tote through the canyon for several weeks now (to which the Turkey Vultures have arrived for the summer, the vanguard of seven, just two days ago.). The old coatings are dim and give muted colors, which is a very pretty picture to look at in a way. It's just too dang little to show any CA. The optics are surely as sharp as the Keck 8.4m telescope. I find myself increasingly unhappy with the center focus/diopter adjust system, finding I get the sharpest focus with individually focusing eyepieces. The way the Hensoldt feels in my hands is like God made it just for me. It only weighs 20 ounces, too! My state of the art binoculars don't know what to think. I have also reverted to my old Omega daily-windup wristwatch. Backwards and downward!
Ron
I have increased my workouts at Fitness 19 and my goal is to get my bench press up enough so that I don't notice the increase in weight from 20oz. to 42oz. My arms already are looking like the Mountain Gorilla's at the zoo. I will find out if the Zeiss 8x56 FL is the optical nirvana Henry says it is tomorrow. I am sure I will be shocked at the size but I have heard it isn't much bigger than the 8x42 FL(I hope!).There can be only one so we will see if it unseats my Canon 10x42 L IS. It is going to take superhuman optics to do that I am sure. I wish I could be happy with such simple tastes as yours but I am in search of optical perfection and nothing will stop my quest. Nothing.

Last edited by denco@comcast.n : Wednesday 23rd March 2011 at 11:01.
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 11:45   #10
Vivian Darkbloom
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Zeiss 7x42 Bgat ClassiC.
You lift them to your eyes and invariably it's already in focus.
The tactile pleasure of holding/using binoculars cannot be overestimated.
The Zeiss is beautifully balanced with a very relaxed view. It's depth of field, astounding FOV and the quality of its build always give immense pleasure.
I also own SV 8.5 x 42 and both the Ultravid HD 7x42 and the Trinovid 7x42, but none of these fine instruments compare with the pleasure that using the Zeiss gives me.

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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 13:05   #11
denco@comcast.n
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Zeiss 7x42 Bgat ClassiC.
You lift it to your eyes and invariably it's already in focus.
The tactile pleasure of holding/using binoculars cannot be overestimated.
The Zeiss is beautifully balanced with a very relaxed view. It's depth of field, astounding FOV and the quality of its build always give immense pleasure.
I also own SV 8.5 x 42 and both the Ultravid HD 7x42 and the Trinovid 7x42, but none of these fine instruments compare with the pleasure that using the Zeiss gives me.
Interesting another 7x man. Either there is alot of close in birders here or there is something to 7x. I do like the classic lines of the Zeiss 7x42 Bgat Classic. It is one beautiful binocular! Here is one for sale on E-bay. They still want $2200.00 for a used one! Very tempting!

http://cgi.ebay.com/CARL-ZEISS-7X42-...item5197d64a2b

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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 13:46   #12
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My Swaro SV 8.5x42.

It is very, very good.

I am in fact still rather spooked how much better it is than my other good bins (in contrast and glare suppression).
I'll second that. The more I use it, the more I realize how good it is. It has unseated the 8x32 SE as the best thing I've ever looked through. Kevin mentions glare supression and he's right. You gotta be careful with these things or you'll get an eyefull of sun. And, oh the feel. They melt into your hands. You feel like a cyborg or something. "Resistance is futile," as they say.

A little heavy, though. I ain't selling my 20oz 8x32 FL any time soon.

Thanks also to Brock for one of the most enteratining posts ever, assuming you grew up on a steady diet of dumb American TV, which I am proud, and/or ashamed, to say I did.
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 18:24   #13
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I figured this thread would become a Canon IS love-fest at some point.......only took one post!
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 18:56   #14
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Perhaps illogical - but the Nikon 8x30 EII - not the 'best', but the pair that gives me a real buzz whenever I get them out.
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 19:02   #15
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Swarovski SLC-HD 8x42, until the big one arrives
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 19:31   #16
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Zeiss Dialyt 7x42 BGAT
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 19:41   #17
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Originally Posted by Vivian Darkbloom View Post
Zeiss 7x42 Bgat ClassiC.
You lift it to your eyes and invariably it's already in focus.
The tactile pleasure of holding/using binoculars cannot be overestimated.
The Zeiss is beautifully balanced with a very relaxed view. It's depth of field, astounding FOV and the quality of its build always give immense pleasure.
I also own SV 8.5 x 42 and both the Ultravid HD 7x42 and the Trinovid 7x42, but none of these fine instruments compare with the pleasure that using the Zeiss gives me.
I fully agree with you.
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 20:07   #18
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Ignorance is bliss for me - untill i win the lottery i never bet on, i'm always happy & surprised to use my Zen 7x36's & would take them as my only pair to Gilligan's Island.
Another vote for 7X!
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 20:18   #19
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Gianni,

If you prefer roofs, why do you have a photo of Ignazio Porro as your avatar??

Broccoli

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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 20:27   #20
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Zeiss Victory fl 8x32. Dont have them but on wishlist.
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 21:40   #21
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Gianni,

If you prefer roofs, why do you have a photo of Ignazio Porro as your avatar??

Broccoli
Good question :)
In fact I prefer the porroprism binoculars, but there are two "problems":
1st Because the trend is roofs, the manufacturers invest their efforts on roofprism research only, so roofs quality grows constantly...
2nd Dialyt 7x42 are, imho, the best all-around binos, even almost 30 years after their release

Nevertheless, I'm waiting for an habicht 7x "wide"... I hope that Swarovski...
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Old Wednesday 23rd March 2011, 23:52   #22
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For dedicated birding, it'd be the SV 8.5x42, though in real life the closest I come to having to choose a single bin is when I pick one for travel, or to take along when doing multiple activities (birding, butterflying, photography, hiking) and these days it's always the Zeiss 8x32 FL that makes the cut on those occasions.

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Old Thursday 24th March 2011, 00:21   #23
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Nikon 10x42 SE. That's it, enough said...

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Old Thursday 24th March 2011, 00:31   #24
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8x30 EIIs for me - nuff said.
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Old Thursday 24th March 2011, 01:45   #25
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8x30 EIIs for me - nuff said.
Ditto. I should also insert a quote from Dennis way back (what, 3 months? 6 weeks?) when EIIs were still his cat's meow.

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