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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2017, 05:22   #51
sbb
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So many happy 8.5 user ... reading all this helps a lot !

I am having a hard time too deciding which binoculars are best for me, except I only need ONE pair Sounds like an expensive obsession to get the perfect binocular collection ...

As we need one pair that does it all it will be the 8.5x42 ! I could test it, it is a joy to use, everybody in here recommends it, customer service top notch and we live next to the Swarovski Europe Office ... easy decision right ?

Today I could compare the 8x32 FP vs the 8.5x42 FP and the glare is almost non existent with the 42 (a little bit around the edges) whereas the 32 showed a pretty ugly grey veil from time to time. Only when I tried to push it to the limit but still it was there. Just like some users reported earlier in here. I too love the 32 but the 42 sounds like the saver option. Almost glare free so to speak. No rolling ball or any kind of sea sickness with the two although the first time panning in the woods is maybe a bit much for a human brain. I am simply not used to such an effect. After half an hour no problems at all.

The weight difference was surprising, these are really two different binoculars. You forget the 32 very quick, the 42 you know what your holding in your hand all the time. No friend of hanging them around the neck, so canīt comment on that.

We have a 7x42 Dialyt at home and somehow I have trouble holding it steady. With the two ELīs I had no problem at all. So maybe the newer binoculars just have better weight balance or I had a strong day. The Field Pro Package I could live without but it is there and itīs ok. I remove all straps anyway.

The built quality seems ok though I think every binocular in this price range should offer way more perfection. No matter if Zeiss, Leica or Swarovski. They all have their weak sides and this can be done better. In terms of build quality I am a fan of Leica. They are special when you grab them, at least to me. I never owned one, they donīt fit my eyes and are not waterproof

The 32 focuser seemed broken, the 42 focuser was good by the way. I am no huge fan of the EL focuser but they work. 2300 Euros ! The focus knob needs a more premium feel to it !
The green color is nice in person, looks almost grey. Very nice.

The optical performance is well described above, just my two cents testing these wonderful binoculars, we really look forward using them.
I got the 8x32 EL FP two weeks ago, and agree the focuser is very average. It felt way too slow to focus and also plasticy. Funny thing is that I love the Swarovski CL 8x25 focuser as it is relatively quick and smooth. I have made the EL 8x32 focusers smoother by winding them up and down a few hundred times.

Anyway just a very average design for the EL focusing system I guess. But I love the FOV , light and the field flatenners.
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Old Thursday 5th October 2017, 21:12   #52
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Something that I still do not understand is why people choose a 42 over a 32 because of low light performance. I am comparing the El 32 with the 42 since a few days and can't for the life of me see a difference that justifies the bigger glas.
Sure there is a difference but so tiny it's not even worth talking about.
When the sun went down and it got darker I could not see more with the 42, all details are gone anyway till both binoculars gave me a good run focusing something. If one does not know for sure if let's say a tree is in focus because the light is gone how do they pick a deer ?
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Old Thursday 5th October 2017, 22:57   #53
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Something that I still do not understand is why people choose a 42 over a 32 because of low light performance. I am comparing the El 32 with the 42 since a few days and can't for the life of me see a difference that justifies the bigger glas.
Sure there is a difference but so tiny it's not even worth talking about.
When the sun went down and it got darker I could not see more with the 42, all details are gone anyway till both binoculars gave me a good run focusing something. If one does not know for sure if let's say a tree is in focus because the light is gone how do they pick a deer ?
Personally, I find a 42mm is always more comfortable with extended viewing, the 5mm exit pupil makes it easier to let the eyes roam around, better depth perception, a more 3d view, I loved the 32mm apart from the veiling glare issue, personally its not all about a brighter view with the 42mm.
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Old Friday 6th October 2017, 18:14   #54
Alexis Powell
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Something that I still do not understand is why people choose a 42 over a 32 because of low light performance. I am comparing the El 32 with the 42 since a few days and can't for the life of me see a difference that justifies the bigger glas.
Sure there is a difference but so tiny it's not even worth talking about.
When the sun went down and it got darker I could not see more with the 42, all details are gone anyway till both binoculars gave me a good run focusing something. If one does not know for sure if let's say a tree is in focus because the light is gone how do they pick a deer ?
Assuming you compared bins of the same (or almost same) magnification, your experience suggests that your pupils do not open wide enough for the extra light of the x42 to enter your eye and thus make a difference. If it could, you'd see a big difference in low light, especially with moving subjects that don't allow prolonged observation.

That said, I pick 8.5x42 for the reasons Torview gave, not low light performance.

--AP
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Old Friday 6th October 2017, 19:12   #55
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Personally, I find a 42mm is always more comfortable with extended viewing, the 5mm exit pupil makes it easier to let the eyes roam around, better depth perception, a more 3d view, I loved the 32mm apart from the veiling glare issue, personally its not all about a brighter view with the 42mm.
Yes, bigger EP is definitely more comfortable especially with eyeglasses.
Recently, I almost acquired a Zeiss FL 8x32. It is very clearly better optically (build and mechanics as well) than my Viper 6x32. Thought about the FL replacing my 6x32.
However, the Viper remains since it is just more comfortable viewing with glasses. Also the image is calmer (less shake). Even 1mm difference in EP is noticeable to me.
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Old Sunday 29th October 2017, 08:01   #56
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Lately I`v taken every opportunity to check my SV` glare control as this was such a major problem for me on the 32mm model.

I`v come to the conclusion that the level of flare/glare is so low in the 42mm FP that it is effectively a non issue, at times there is some evidence to be seen but it has no meaningful impact on the view.

The SVFP easily outperformed my UVHD+ and Meopta B1 on glare/flare control and both these models are generally rated as very good in this area.

All things considered, the new armour (in a league of its own imho), the now faultless focus and diopter system, the FP strap system, the c/a free high contrast image and the Swarovski service reputation still put this model as close to perfection as I`v found in a one binocular for all needs purchase.
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Old Sunday 29th October 2017, 10:24   #57
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The SVFP easily outperformed my UVHD+ and Meopta B1 on glare/flare control and both these models are generally rated as very good in this area.

All things considered ..... still put this model as close to perfection as I`v found in a one binocular for all needs purchase.

I feel the same way about the 8.5x42. Still one of my very favorites !

Regarding your remark about glare control etc.: in my experience, much depends on how you place your eyes behind the eyepieces, and that is particularly true with the 8x32 EL. Some models seem to be more „prone to encourage a wrong eye placement“ than others (and thatīs a big part of the reason why different people rate different glasses so differently), although I would of course agree that in some bincoculars, straylight and glare control is better than in others.
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Old Sunday 29th October 2017, 14:04   #58
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I recently examined an old (probably 10 years) 8.5X42 El (2nd version with faster focus) alongside an SV and Field Pro. The not so surprising conclusion was the oldest, and well used, 8.5X42 was almost indistinguishable from the later models. There wasn't a thing wrong with it, optically or mechanically.

We often nitpick over differences that, in many cases, mean absolutely nothing to a birder. I'd happily use the older model as my one and only optic.
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Old Sunday 29th October 2017, 14:47   #59
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...The not so surprising conclusion was the oldest, and well used, 8.5X42 was almost indistinguishable from the later models. There wasn't a thing wrong with it, optically or mechanically....I'd happily use the older model as my one and only optic.
I agree! I have access to early and late examples of the 8.5x42 - a 2003 EL WB (upgraded by SONA), and a 2015 SV, and I slightly prefer the view through the older one. Both are superb instruments, and I could be happy with either. I consider the design to be one of the best all-round birding binoculars ever, right up there with the Zeiss 7x42B/GAT. Just my opinion, of course.
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