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Old Wednesday 22nd October 2003, 17:28   #1
iebirdie
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Thanks for advice...

Thanks all for recent advice on multiple threads..... The sale of my old scope, and a recent tax windfall, put me in the market to invest in new optics. I wanted good kit, which would last. Compactness was important. I went for Leica 62 non-APO and Swaro 8x32 ELs. Both superb...!

My feedback on my experiences are as follows:

A. Bins

1. Trust your eyes. I originally fancied 8.5 x42 swaros, but they just were not right for me. The 8x32s with less eye relief (even though I do not wear glasses) and better portability were better. They are absolutely amazing I have to say, by the way. Overpriced ? Depends on your outlook. They were the ones for me (versus the Nikon or Leica competition) and won hands down on every score, so therefore they are worth it.

2. I obsessed about magnification. Somehow I thought 10x would be better. and told myself a 10x had to be it. However, having tried out a good few bins in the field, I have converted fully to the "8x power is plenty if you have good optics and good fieldcraft" school of thought. Your mileage may vary though, but my point is just not to imprint one or either on yourself before buying. Test em out and make your own decision on the view, comfort, depth of field, field of view, shake, resolution, etc.

3. Try the bins in the field - nuff said ! But not always possible admittedly. Good to use a retailer who you can return the stuff to as new if you can

B. Scope

1. The Leica non-apo has come down in price (now below 600 w/eyepiece) and represents value in the middle of the market in my view, particularly if you want a compact portable package.

2. If you are a digiscoper, yes larger objectives and APO glass will be of interest, and are well worth considering. But I am not a digiscoper, and the price differential for APO was too much to be of value for my uses. I particularly wanted portability and also preferred to invest the 200 extra or whatever in the primary optics, namely the Swaro bins...

C. Retailers

I got the best information and advice out of the following:

Ace Optics, Bath
South West Optics, Truro
Kay Optical, nr London

There are of course others, but I just thought these deserved special mention....

I probably should not say which I went for as that would be favouritism, but I can tell you any of the above are good, and know "birding" optics not just "optics"...

Thanks to all who contributed to my obsessive quest over the last while, now for some birding... !

Niall


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Old Wednesday 22nd October 2003, 18:09   #2
Grousemore
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Well done,Niall,glad to see you are fully kitted-out now and looking forward to hearing about the birds viewed through your new optics!
Interesting insight into your selection process,which will be of use to any other members buying new equipment.
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