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Reviews by HokkaidoStu

Recommended
Yes
Price
0$
Pros
  • solid reliable lens, IQ at 400mm, handholdable all day
Cons
  • slightly dated design, not so good in poor light
I picked this up secondhand about 10 months ago and would highly recommend it to anyone with a Canon DSLR. Has to be the ultimate affordable (just about) walkaround lens for the birder.

Canon's 2 other options in the same price range are no doubt excellent but for me although the 400L may be slightly sharper (according to stuff I've read on various forums) it has no IS (a dealbreaker for myself, don't know about others) and the 300L + 1.4 T/C doesn't have the flexibility of the 100-400L's zoom.

I've taken 000's of pictures on my 400D with this lens and am looking forward to taking 000's more with it when I get my 50D next year. Unless Canon bring out some new IS lens under $2000 I'll stick with it for a while yet. The immediate next steps up from this (the Sigma 500 F4.5 or the Canon 300 F2.8) are well out of my price range.
Recommended
No
Price
0$
Pros
  • easy to use, works with lots of different set-ups
Cons
  • flimsy, bits fall off,threads wear out
I bought one of these earlier in the year. It definitely works on all set-ups but I was a bit disappointed with it to be honest.

Firstly the arm (the bit where the cable screws in) fell off and was lost. It tended to work loose and there\'s nothing at the top of the main column to prevent it slipping off. I called Eagle-eye to ask if they could replace this small part and they were rather rude and dismissive and I ended up having to buy the whole thing again. After 2 or 3 months the place on the (new) arm where the cable screws in lost its thread and is now useless (the cable doesn\'t screw in anymore).

I ended up buying a similar product from another company.

This product DOES work and is definitely better than nothing. However it just doesn\'t last long enough. Maybe I was just unlucky but after 2 letdowns I won\'t be re-odering this again.
Recommended
Yes
Price
450$
Pros
  • Lightweight and very compact. Uses a wide variety of eyepieces.
Cons
  • None found yet.
This is a fairly new scope and is available in Japan and the USA for about $500-$700 which is pretty good value for a waterproof ED scope. In fact I do not think it is possible to buy a new scope of this quality at this price.

One major plus point of this scope is that it uses any 1.25 inch astro eyepieces. These range from top of the range Nagler (and Pentax XW) eyepieces which may cost nearly as much as the scope itself down to cheap plossls which can be picked up for a few $. There are several cheaper Pentax XF eyepieces which were designed with this scope in mind. I have been using the XF12 which gives a mag of 32x. It is a great combination which gives beautiful clear images with no CA or yellowish edges. Eye relief is 18mm. The premium XW eyepieces have longer eye relief and wider FOV (and are fully waterproof). I also got a generic Vixen zoom off e-bay, a 8-24mm eyepiece which gives a mag of 16-48x. The fixed eyepiece is sharper but only slightly. I would be perfectly ok using only this zoom.

One thing about the eyepieces is that it is very quick and easy to change them-just twist and pull. Focusing is easy and smooth.The scope comes with a stay on case which is perfectly useable.

I have never used the larger Pentax scopes so do not know how much the Pentax engineers have altered the optics (if at all). These larger scopes have had somewhat mixed reviews but most of the stuff about the smaller model has been positive. I do not know whether this is down to quality control or redesigned optics.

If you want a good value 65mm scope I can recommend this highly.

Apologies for the strange wording and grammar-for some reason the apostrophe key on my Japanese keyboard does not like the review forum!
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