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Old Tuesday 31st December 2013, 13:13   #1
astley
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please recommend

Hi All

You were great last year when looking for a scope.

Now it is time to upgrade our Binoculars, and am looking for recommendations, at the moment my son and I have 2 pairs of £5.99 jobs off the market. which means lumping the scope everywhere we go.

We do occasionally go on walks where we do not want to take the scope, and need some bins that offer better views than we get from the cheapos.

I have glanced on ebay but do not know where to start, and this is where I am looking for recommendations.

Budget around the £50 to £100 mark.

Look forward to responses
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Old Tuesday 31st December 2013, 13:20   #2
peter kitchener
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I have a pair of Viking MD 6.5x32 binoculars that I use principally for insect watching (they focus down to 1 metre) but are pretty good for birding too. They are still on offer at £100 and I think they represent excellent value for money.

http://www.vikingopticalcentres.co.u...2-md-binocular

No doubt you'll get lots of other suggestions.
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Old Tuesday 31st December 2013, 14:03   #3
typo
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I'd agree with Peter that the Viking is excellent value at the current price. An old favourite here is the Olympus PCI 8x25 reverse porro. Small and light and can be found for around £60. Porro models like the Nikon Action EX are very good for the money. Uttings has the 7x35 at £90 and the 8x40 at £100.

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Old Tuesday 31st December 2013, 16:09   #4
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Nikon Travelite 8 x 25. Small, lightweight, waterproof, nitrogen filled and excellent quality optics. I use them as my 'always in the boot of the car' ones and most of my family have sampled them and bought a pair. Currently £79.99 on Uttings.co.uk
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Old Tuesday 31st December 2013, 16:51   #5
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Those Travelites are very tough, too. Reverse-porro is a great way to get value
in a compact. There are Olympus 8x21s and 8x25s with excellent views
for less. They don't have the extra ruggedness or weather sealing of the Travelites.
That's the main difference. And the 8x21s need more light, of course.

At the lower price, larger objectives and porro prisms can give tremendous performace
(like in the Nikon Action models mentioned, or Acculons). The tradeoff is: size.
A 7x35 or 8x40 is going to give you tremendous contrast, resolution, and brightness,
generally. But: avoid the "incredible value" drug-store or cut-out store binoculars
with the peculiar metallic amber/red coatings outside. They are total poison.
Just mentioning that because there are a lot of awful Xmas stocking-stuffer deals about.

Last edited by OPTIC_NUT : Tuesday 31st December 2013 at 17:28.
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Old Tuesday 31st December 2013, 18:23   #6
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You also might want to look at the Kowa YF 6x30. I like them a bit better than the Leupold Yosemites, and they may be easier for you to find in the UK.
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Old Tuesday 31st December 2013, 20:47   #7
OPTIC_NUT
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Nice suggestion. 6x30 porros are small for porros, quick to bring to target,
and easy on the eyes. For some reason my Yosemite 6x30s had tricky
eye placement. I moved them on. They might have fixed that. Maybe the
Kowas had kinder oculars.

Astley: compared to the basic 7x35 Nikons, the Kowas would be a bit more
money but would have rather stunning sharpness.
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Old Wednesday 1st January 2014, 08:46   #8
astley
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Many Thanks all, I have certainly got some brands to look at, now the real thick question what do the 6 X 30, 8 X 25 etc actually stand for??.

Any more suggestions
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Old Wednesday 1st January 2014, 09:06   #9
typo
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Many Thanks all, I have certainly got some brands to look at, now the real thick question what do the 6 X 30, 8 X 25 etc actually stand for??.

Any more suggestions
The first number is the magnification and the second the diameter of the objective (front lens) in millimetres. If you divide the second number by the first it gives you something called the exit pupil which is a guide to how useful they will be in low light. An 8x25 would be 3.125mm and an 6.5x32, 4.92mm. 3mm is normally fine for general daytime use but when the light is poor 5mm or more will be brighter.

There are plenty of sites online that explain all the different features, this one popped up first:
http://www.opticsplanet.com/howto/ho...inoculars.html

David
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Old Wednesday 1st January 2014, 12:05   #10
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I would add the 6.5x21 pentax papillios also
close focus, light weight, great value for the money
a real fun binouclar

edj
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Old Wednesday 1st January 2014, 13:26   #11
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I will put in another vote for the Viking MD 6.5x32.

A great all-round instrument for looking at butterflies and dragonflies as well as birds.

Fine value for money too.

Lee
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Old Friday 3rd January 2014, 03:08   #12
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That's a great power, brightness, and focal range for near/all-purpose.
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Old Friday 3rd January 2014, 08:26   #13
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Hi,

Have a look at the guide I put together for choosing bins, it should be fairly easy to understand: http://www.shop.featherswildbirdcare.co.uk/guide.html

There's also loads of reviews there, only for Opticron, Hawke and Viking mind you.

You'll have to weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of compacts vs full size bins, depending on what you are going to use them for. My personal suggestion in that price range is the Opticron Oregon 8x32, small (but not pocket size), light weight (ish) but gather more light than a compact pair and offers a massive field of view for the price. It's certainly one of the pairs we sold alot of in the run up to christmas!

The best thing for you to do is get somewhere where you can try a few out, this will give you a much better idea of what you like.

Good luck!

EDIT: The Vikings get a vote from me too, for the price they are at it's a bargain. Good company for after sales service too.
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Old Friday 3rd January 2014, 10:44   #14
Bencw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen View Post
Nikon Travelite 8 x 25. Small, lightweight, waterproof, nitrogen filled and excellent quality optics. I use them as my 'always in the boot of the car' ones and most of my family have sampled them and bought a pair. Currently £79.99 on Uttings.co.uk
I too would think the travelite a good one for your purpose, the 8x25 or possibly 9x25, both better for general use than the 10x or 12x which I would avoid.
I recently bought, then quickly sold the new Nikon Monarch 5 8x42 roof, I personally thought my older travelite 8x Porro was better.
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Old Friday 3rd January 2014, 11:16   #15
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Also depending on age of your son he might find compacts easier to carry around than full size bins. (don't be tempted by the 9 or 10 x Travelites.....you lose too much light at that mag with a 25mm. Plus 8x is plenty good enough for general biridng, butterflies etc.
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Old Tuesday 25th February 2014, 08:05   #16
astley
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Just a quick note to all that replied, after a couple of months of pondering and testing, WE HAVE OPTED FOR THE Viking 6.5 x 32. Not only do they look suitable for my son, but also are still on offer at under £100.

Many Thanks for all your help guys
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Old Tuesday 25th February 2014, 16:34   #17
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Originally Posted by astley View Post
Just a quick note to all that replied, after a couple of months of pondering and testing, WE HAVE OPTED FOR THE Viking 6.5 x 32. Not only do they look suitable for my son, but also are still on offer at under £100.

Many Thanks for all your help guys
Great News Astley, have a great time with them.

Lee
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Old Thursday 27th February 2014, 09:00   #18
astley
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Cheers Lee

I will add guys, ordered online 8pm Sunday night, delivered 9.30 am Tuesday morning.

Quick Eh
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