I think what's happening here is that everyone likes a 7x and there are so few around. I tried to convince myself that these were good value for money too, but in reality they are disappointing. I tried them next to a few cheaper Helios models and they weren't at all bright for a 6mm exit pupil...
The only thing I would note is that an experienced birder like you would need something with a higher magnification for the coast. I know you do a lot of coastal work in your professional capacity.
Looking at the Opticron brochure, it would appear a 7x42 model is coming in the Discovery range. This is a very interesting and welcome development. I am very fond of the Discovery model. Does anyone know when these are available?
I bought an Imagic VHD 8x42 10 days ago and have been using it ever since. It's a very good binocular . I prefer it to the DBA VHD. It handles better, has a wider FOV and I can't see any difference optically. It's bright, sharp with excellent contrast. I'm very pleased.
I thought this was a true gem. It's a delight to handle and the black with the gold writing looks great. I remember Typo said it was like putting on a comfy pair of slippers. It always puts a smile on my face.
I must admit it took me a while to get used to. The depth of field gives it a Porro...