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Upgrade from Nikon ED series...

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Old Thursday 23rd May 2019, 17:14   #26
Dd61999
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hermann View Post
That's simple. Let's assume it's a 15x binocular because there are more good 15x binoculars than 16x binoculars on the market:

1. Any decent 15x binocular will be about twice the weight of the Nikon ED50.

2. It will still need to be on a tripod (or, at least, on a monopod) if you want to fully utilize the magnification it offers.

3. That tripod will need to be somewhat sturdier than the tripod you'd need for an ED50 due to the higher weight of the binocular. It will also need to be taller because the binocular won't have angled eyepieces. And you won't be able to get away with a smallish ballhead, not even if you use a high quality ballhead.

4. The end result is that the combination 15x binocular+tripod+head will be roughly more than twice the weight of the ED50+tripod+head.

5. And the ED50 allows you to switch to higher magnifications VERY easily and quickly with the zoom eyepiece.

I actually looked into switching to a 15x binocular for some time, simply because there are a few excellent choices on the market that I really like. In the end I decided against it simply because the ED50 is a much better choice for the kind of birding I do.

Hermann
Many 15x56 binoculars only weigh 42 ounces. Pretty much any decent tripod can handle that. Even cheap $30 Walmart tripods do. While you might be able to zoom to higher magnification, your starting to degrade the view at 27x. So if you compare a good 15x56 side by side to an ed50 at 20x the image scale is close yet you see more detail views with the binoculars not only due 6mm additional aperture but the “effective aperture” increases of an additional 20-40% due to two scopes, one for each eye. Giving your brain more information to work with.

While it’s not a viable option for everyone. But it’s definitely something everyone should explore
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Old Saturday 25th May 2019, 05:45   #27
Hermann
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Originally Posted by Dd61999 View Post
Many 15x56 binoculars only weigh 42 ounces. Pretty much any decent tripod can handle that. Even cheap $30 Walmart tripods do.
No, they don't. Never ever. Perhaps if you use them on your porch, sheltered from the wind. But not in the field, especially not in windy conditions. No way.

And with binoculars you need taller tripods than with an angled scope. You need a heavier head as well, just like I wrote. I actually tried this, in the field, more than once, and the lightest setup that works for me with the ED50 in the field is about 1300 gr. + the weight of the scope. With a 15x56 it's about 2100 gr. + the weight of the binoculars. That's a significant difference in my books.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd61999 View Post
While you might be able to zoom to higher magnification, your starting to degrade the view at 27x. So if you compare a good 15x56 side by side to an ed50 at 20x the image scale is close yet you see more detail views with the binoculars not only due 6mm additional aperture but the “effective aperture” increases of an additional 20-40% due to two scopes, one for each eye. Giving your brain more information to work with.
Sure. My guesstimate, based on actually trying this out in the field, is that a binocular gives me about 25-30% more detail than a scope, so a 15x binocular would give my as much detail as a scope at 20x magnification or thereabouts. However, I can crank up the little scope to 40x, and even if the image degrades somewhat above ~30x, I still get more detail than I can get at 20x, and that difference is not subtle. Not at all.

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While it’s not a viable option for everyone. But it’s definitely something everyone should explore
Agreed.

Hermann
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Old Saturday 25th May 2019, 11:19   #28
Darkus_Markus
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Quick update, I managed to get a pretty good deal on a used ATM HD -20-50 W.

Initial thoughts, at 25x the FOV is significantly narrower than the ED50 with the 27x. The view is actually alot more similar to the ED82 with the 30x. So if I decide to keep it I'll definitely have to practice the cable tie trick.

It's a fantastic zoom though, will have more time to review over the weekend.

Also being the ATM it's a bit lighter than the ATS and seems ok on a sherpa 200 tripod. Could well be the portable solution I was looking for.
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