Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!
Zeiss - Always on the lookout for something special – Shop now

Welcome to BirdForum.
BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE! You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Swaro 12x50 v Leica Noc 10x42 - Leica Brighter during the day?

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old Friday 29th November 2019, 06:43   #1
Scarletmacawdad
Registered User
 
Scarletmacawdad's Avatar

 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: LA
Posts: 17
Swaro 12x50 v Leica Noc 10x42 - Leica Brighter during the day?

Friends,

I was birding an open marshland today after the rain cleared. I had waders and duck like birds behind me and an energetic harrier hunting.

I brought my new SV 12x50 and my Leica 10x42.

Time was 2-3 hours before sunset. Dimming, but not dark.

QUESTION: I can see how handshake interferes with grabbing fine detail, such as the striations in the wings of the harrier, such that the Leica at 10 outperforms the SV at 10.

PUZZLE: why was the SV also dimmer?

They have comparable exit pupils ~4mm, but I must be missing some math here.

(I should indicate I am 40, but my eyes make it to 4mm)

At twighlight, there is no comparison between the two. The 12's rule hands down.

But I was saddened I could not depend on my SV 12's for the most pleasing view during the day. They appeared dimmer and less life like.

I am sure I am missing math. I throw my ignorance upon the mercy of the collective wisdom of this group.
Scarletmacawdad is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 29th November 2019, 09:53   #2
Binastro
Registered User

 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: S.England
Posts: 4,676
Hi Scarlet,
2 to 3 hours before sunset could be very bright, but you indicate dimming.

Your pupils may be 3mm in that light. It really is difficult to know.
So a 12x36 and 10x30 binocular.
However, depending on side light etc. your pupil size might be different in the two binoculars.
So you may not be comparing like with like.
Your pupil size can change in seconds or less.

At age 40 your pupils could reach 7mm at night. Again, this may be measured.

The two binoculars may have different transmission curves. So again this could account for your findings.

I wouldn't fret about this.
Use whichever binocular you prefer.

Regards,
B.
Binastro is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 29th November 2019, 14:27   #3
typo
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 3,903
ScarletMD,

As Binastro points out, at least part of the answer is most likely to be the transmission curves of the two binoculars, but other factors will play their part. You might notice if you check carefully differences in the vividness of the colours and both the blue and red ends of the spectrum. The Swarovski being slightly proportionally better at the blue end of the spectrum, and the Leica the red end. This will affect both the apparent luminocity of the view, the balance of the colours and contrast.

What might be less apparent is quite how much the spectrum of available light varies with the time of day, season and weather conditions. The light can vary from quite strongly red, through neutral to quite strongly blue, particularly after sunset. Obviously it is the product of the available light and the filtering effect of the binocular that reaches the retina and the brain interprets the resulting electrical signals as brightness, colour and contrast. Unforunately the inconsistancies of those last two steps are have led to numerous disagreements on the forum.

Generally the Swarovski with it's higher blue to red ratio may well appear brighter at twilight and a Leica a fuller colour spectrum in good light, but there are strong differences in opinion on which is better.

Historically there have been a number of studies on how magnification affects binocular efficiency in low light but I'll stop there for now.

David
typo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 29th November 2019, 22:20   #4
John A Roberts
Registered User
 
John A Roberts's Avatar

 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Perth
Posts: 319
Hi SMD,

I’m at a loss to explain the Noctivid’s superior brightness in reduced light - but before twilight, where you note that the EL SV is significantly superior

I’ve attached a copy of their respective transmission graphs from Gijs van Ginkel (at: https://www.houseofoutdoor.com/verre...n-vergelijken/ ),
And as can be seen the transmission curves are similar until around 625 nm - a 2 or 3% difference would not be perceived as significant

In contrast, what you seem to have observed is a notable difference between objective transmission and perceived brightness, within a relatively narrow range of conditions

So a couple of very tentative suggestions:
- Is this a general difference or perhaps individual to you? e.g. do you have any diagnosed vision deficiency?

- Might it be as simple as the EL's lenses needing cleaning? - film can build up gradually and not be immediately obvious
(I’ve had this experience a couple of times, where the lenses appeared OK but cleaning significantly increased the brightness)


John
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	x50 EL SV's - Nov 11.jpg
Views:	29
Size:	102.8 KB
ID:	711338  Click image for larger version

Name:	x42 Noctivids - May 2017.jpg
Views:	27
Size:	69.5 KB
ID:	711339  

Last edited by John A Roberts : Friday 29th November 2019 at 23:03.
John A Roberts is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 30th November 2019, 02:43   #5
Scarletmacawdad
Registered User
 
Scarletmacawdad's Avatar

 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: LA
Posts: 17
Your point re side light is fascinating. It didn’t occur to me.

I also appear to have thrown off at least one of you incredible friends of feathered friends.

Indeed it was bright. But bright as in cloudy day bright at 3/4pm.

I really did see more detail in the Leica’s.

But you were right! That the marsh had a reddish hue after this rain. Now that I give it a bit more reflection, the harrier flies across a wheat-colored grass field, and perhaps the Leica’s red favoring enhances the view.

I was really just struck that at 10x not only did the general view seem brighter (it was, at least as perceived by me), but I could easily pick out more detail under the harrier’s wing, even at distance.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Binastro View Post
Hi Scarlet,
2 to 3 hours before sunset could be very bright, but you indicate dimming.

Your pupils may be 3mm in that light. It really is difficult to know.
So a 12x36 and 10x30 binocular.
However, depending on side light etc. your pupil size might be different in the two binoculars.
So you may not be comparing like with like.
Your pupil size can change in seconds or less.

At age 40 your pupils could reach 7mm at night. Again, this may be measured.

The two binoculars may have different transmission curves. So again this could account for your findings.

I wouldn't fret about this.
Use whichever binocular you prefer.

Regards,
B.
Scarletmacawdad is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 30th November 2019, 02:45   #6
typo
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 3,903
John,

The visible spectrum is from 380nm to 780nm, but for some reason Gijs has has chosen only to scan 450nm to 475nm which cuts out the violet and much of the red and masks the parts of the spectrum where I understand the Noctivid is stronger. I personally find the full palate colours of the Noctivid preferable in daylight, revealing detail the Swarovski does not. Others will interpret it differently for a multiple of reasons, including genetics. SMD appears to perceive this as brightness. Why not?

David

Last edited by typo : Saturday 30th November 2019 at 03:00.
typo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 30th November 2019, 14:32   #7
henry link
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: north carolina
Posts: 4,434
I would suggest two things to the OP. First, set up a more controlled comparison using non-moving objects, so that you can be sure you're comparing views of exactly the same things under exactly the same lighting conditions as you repeatedly switch back and forth between the binoculars. Tripod mounting would be best. Second, repeat the comparison at least a few times on different days. Don't place too much trust in a first impression.
henry link is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 30th November 2019, 15:05   #8
Scarletmacawdad
Registered User
 
Scarletmacawdad's Avatar

 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: LA
Posts: 17
Thank you all very much. I own both and have used the SV for about ten days. I intend to keep them both because at twilight there is no contest. The aperture and mag wins.

I will definitely try with a tripod during different lighting conditions.

This is more a curiosity thing than anything else - and perhaps a tribute to the noctivids.
Scarletmacawdad is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 30th November 2019, 22:36   #9
Gijs van Ginkel
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: utrecht
Posts: 1,739
David, post 6,
I think I have mentioned it before on BF, but it does no harm to mention it again. Our spectrometer was designed to measure absorption and fluorescence spectra of single molecules and molecular complexes in biological material. But it is also useful for measuring transmission spectra of binoculars and telescopes.
Generally the sensitivity of the human eye is very low at the extremes of the eyes sensitivity curve, so that hardly plays a role in color reproduction of binoculars (I can not see anything at 780 nm despite it being at the end of the eyes sensitivity curve and that is also the case at 380 nm).
Gijs van Ginkel
Gijs van Ginkel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 03:28   #10
typo
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 3,903
Gijs,

I started out as a biochemist and got to know scanning UV-visible spectrometers pretty well in my early years. However most of my research programs required much more sensitive and efficient techniques and I haven't used one in decades.

It was a much later program developing a high throughput fluorescence video system that led me to do some simple tests using long and short wavelength LEDs. It seem some individuals cannot see anything much beyond 700nm yet others see an 780nm LEDs quite clearly. These same individuals also differed in their ability to distinguish spectral violet. (These differences is most likely due to a very common mutation at position 180 on the L-opsin.)

Whatever your own sensitivity is at either end of the spectrum, I can assure you myself and many others, (including Scalet MD it would seem), find binocular transmissions below 450nm and above 675nm make a significant contribution to practical performance. I know very well how trivial it is to change the settings on a specrometer. It would make your reports far more relevant to all users, not just a particular subset.

Cheers,

David

Last edited by typo : Sunday 1st December 2019 at 07:59.
typo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 08:08   #11
Gijs van Ginkel
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: utrecht
Posts: 1,739
David, post 10,
As I described it is not a trivial spectrometer, we have plenty of those in our laboratory, but none of them is suited to accomodate binoculars and telescopes. In the device we use there is no possibility to change wavelengths since the whole spectrum is measured in one sweep (repeated a few hundred times in very short time intervals and coupled to a photon counter) and the spectral range is determined by the stabilised light source used.
In that light it may be informative to describe how it all started. In our group time resolved spectroscopy was developed coupled to a confocal microscope. One of our PhD students had in that light also developed a spectrometer, which allowed the measurement of absorption and fluorescence spectra of single molecules and molecular complexes. One day I entered his experimental room with a set of new binoculars, which had attracted international attention. So we discussed if it would be possible to measure transmission spectra and just for fun we measured the spectra of a few newly introduced binoculars. We published them in a photographic journal and one of the big companies asked if we could do a check to compare our method towards theirs.
We received two optical instruments used by that company for control and calibration purposes. The company had measured transmission spectra of these instruments but they were also investigated by a German institute for calibration/quality control of optical instruments. We also investigated both optical instruments (one of them was a new binocular) and compared our results with the ones from the binocular company and the calibration institute. Our results matched these data perfectly well, showing that out method worked well.
We never had complaints about the wavelength range of our spectra determined by the stabilised light source, also not from the optical company which asked us to check our method against theirs.
Gijs van Ginkel
Gijs van Ginkel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 10:17   #12
typo
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 3,903
Gijs,

My introduction to unusual spectroscopy configurations was through my undergraduate professor who was studying free radical reaction in biological systems. He had a linear accelerator installed in a bunker behind the biological science building where the instrument operator was shielded with 2m of concrete and a 50mm wall of lead. He was looking at various parameters, including submicrosecond fluorescence with the detector at the end of a 10m light path from the test sample.

My career challenges were rather different. Sub-nanomolar or even sub-femtomolar detection. Throughput demands that grew from 10s of samples per day to 10s of thousands per day, and reaction volumes that shrank from millilitres to a few microlitres so we grabbed every new technology as it emerged and invented quite a few others ourselves. All good fun, but not relevant to the thread.

I know very well I'm far from the first to raise this this issue. I imagine if Isaac Newton was around today he might have something to say on the subject as well. I'm simply asking you to scan the entire visible spectrum. It would save myself and others a lot of time and energy looking for adverse light conditions to evaluate a binocular's full performance potential.

David

Last edited by typo : Sunday 1st December 2019 at 10:20.
typo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 11:28   #13
Gijs van Ginkel
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: utrecht
Posts: 1,739
David, post 12,
As I wrote in my former post: the wavelength range for our spectrometer is limited by the whole setup, the light source in this case and for different reasons there will be no possibility to change that, so if you want to build a spectrometer with these possibilities: be my guest.
The spectra as we measure them now yield sufficient information to draw conclusions about binocular brightness and color reproduction as compared with visual inspection, so we are happy with it.
Funny that we share some experience: our biophysics group is now almost 80 years old and started with spectroscopic research of photosynthetic organism and bioluminescent systems (sorry for the non-scientific readers). Later the course was gradually changed to the investigation of biological membranes with Electrin Spin Resonance and different types of optical spectroscopy. Our group merged with another biophysics group which used a particle accelerator to generate oygen radicals and other radicals to determine their effect on biological systems. And in the past decades research was concentrated on confocal microscopy, fluorescence lifetime imaging etc. etc. Optical spectroscopy stayed a vital tool for the investigation of the different biological systems.
My apology to all readers for taking so much space for describing our research programme, since it has nothing to do with binoculars, the spectroscopy for measuring transmission spectra is only a spin-off.
Gijs van Ginkel
Gijs van Ginkel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 15:26   #14
Binastro
Registered User

 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: S.England
Posts: 4,676
I'm not sure Isaac Newton is a good person to ask.

I think he completely rejected the idea that a refractive system could eliminate or even reduce CA to acceptable levels.

It took later individuals to show he was wrong.

Otherwise we would only have mirror binoculars.

Isaac Newton apparently argued with nearly everybody.

B.
Binastro is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 15:40   #15
typo
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 3,903
Gijs,

Sorry I found it hard to understand why your spectrometer has a such a limited wavelength span. It sounds quite extraordinary, and unquestionably a major handicap. A partial spectrum is obviously an incomplete and potentially misleading picture, but I'm sure its not the only reason why some of your comments on brightness and colour reproduction seem quite extraordinary to me at times.

I rather liked this this little passage from an online blog on colour.
"Colorimetry is essentially linear algebra, human perception is much more complex."

David
typo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 16:39   #16
Gijs van Ginkel
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: utrecht
Posts: 1,739
David, post 15,
It is very well possible that our eyes have a different view on the world we observe, but I am quite happy if we agree that we can disagree.
Up to now I had no trouble with the binocular producers when we discussed our data and compared it with theirs.
Gijs
Gijs van Ginkel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 18:51   #17
typo
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 3,903
Gijs,

I've only seen transmission scans from a limited number of manufacturers, but invariably they use the entire spectum. I guess they think it's important too.

David
typo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 19:00   #18
Gijs van Ginkel
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: utrecht
Posts: 1,739
David,post 15,
I reread your post 15 again and it generated again a very unpleasant feeling. I will explain why. In comparison with our spectra I took the transmission spectra we have obtained from a very large and well-known binocular-telescope company and their spectra reach from 400-700 nm and they make a cut out for the spectral region 450 to 675 nm, since that contains enough information to draw conclusions about brightness and color reproduction by this company similar to our approach. (steep transmission drops occur below 450 nm and beyond 675 nm in the investigated binoculars). So it is not a weird approach if we choose the spectral range of 450-675 nm. And often we discuss our results first with the company if we suspect that something may generate questions or to check our conclusions.
Your sentence that "your comments on brightness and color reproduction seem quite extraordinary to me at some times" reads very unpleasant, since our judgment about brightness is first of all made by eye and then checked if our transmission spectra can confirm that. The same is the case with color reproduction. So what is your problem David? If you disagree with our approach you in fact also disagree with that companies approach. Do I now have to tell that company that their work is completely wrong and that they should ask you to come along and teach them how to handle this matter? I am sure they are always eager to learn.
Gijs van Ginkel
Gijs van Ginkel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 19:39   #19
typo
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 3,903
Gijs,

I'm well aware that Swarovski publicity material at one time claimed that their flat transmission profiles between 450nm and 675nm ensured perfect colour reproduction. I don't know if there were formal complaints at the time, but is both scientifically and visibly untrue. I have discussed it with a couple of their sales guys. One at least just smiled broadly, shrugged his shoulders, and said "well it was good for sales". Make of that what you will, but I don't think they make the claim any longer.

I have discussed it with Gerold Dobler of Zeiss and Miloš Slaný of Meopta with a degree of agreement. They have improved the width of their transmission profiles in recent years, but they acknowledge that commercially they feel constrained by serving multiple markets with different demands.

David

Last edited by typo : Monday 2nd December 2019 at 07:45.
typo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 1st December 2019, 20:30   #20
Scarletmacawdad
Registered User
 
Scarletmacawdad's Avatar

 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: LA
Posts: 17
You gentlemen/women are way above my pay grade on optics.
p
Insofar as you find the puzzle stimulating, an additional fact.

I do have an astigmatism - and it was suggested above that genetic factors can predispose one to detecting deep reds and blues.

In all events, I will repeat this experiment multiple times.

Thank you!
Scarletmacawdad is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 3rd December 2019, 16:19   #21
chill6x6
Registered User
BF Supporter 2019
 
chill6x6's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Alabama
Posts: 1,487
David,

Do you have a spectrometer?
__________________
Chuck
chill6x6 is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2017 2018 2019 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Tuesday 3rd December 2019, 17:34   #22
typo
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 3,903
Chuck,

It's over 25 years since I was last involved in buying a decent spectrometer. Back then, the kind of components and lab set-up required to produce top quality transmission scans would have cost tens of thousands of dollars. There are a lot more far Eastern manufacturers in the market these days, so you could probably do a pretty decent job for a lot less, but on my pension, not something I could contemplate.

While not at all suitable for a binocular scan, it seems reasonably straight forward to build a very basic spectrometer with a simple grating and CCD or CMOS array. I toyed with the idea of having a go, mostly to satisfy my own curiosity about ambient light shifts. Fortunately, the following Nature paper from 2016 did a much better job than I could possibly hope to. It shows very clearly why the full spectrum is required.
https://www.nature.com/articles/srep26756#Fig1

David
typo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 3rd December 2019, 18:41   #23
dries1
Registered User
BF Supporter 2019
 
dries1's Avatar

 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Delaware
Posts: 1,769
Now that this is settled, can we move on?

Andy W.
dries1 is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2018 2019 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Thursday 5th December 2019, 14:42   #24
Troubador
Moderator
 
Troubador's Avatar

 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Sheffield
Posts: 9,424
I echo Andy's request.
Officially.

Lee
Moderator
Troubador is offline  
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
Reply


Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Handling of the Swaro 10x42 EL, Leica 10x42 HD? spiralcoil Leica 2 Tuesday 13th July 2010 11:16
Nikon 10x42 SE vs Swaro EL vs Leica Geovid BRF CLRobles Nikon 0 Sunday 19th July 2009 05:54
Help! swaro 15x56 or leica 12x50? katsunori Swarovski 23 Wednesday 10th May 2006 18:25
Swaro 8.5ELs vs Zeiss FL 8x42 vs leica Ultravid 10x42 laurencejackson Leica 4 Thursday 19th May 2005 05:23

{googleads}

Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.19040108 seconds with 39 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 00:41.