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Follow up testing Noctivid

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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 18:35   #76
Binastro
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In astronomy using telescopes there are some observers who still observe visually, but the majority now I think use digital imagers, cameras.
Images are stacked using from maybe 10 to 10,000 stacked images, where the best, say one third of the frames, are chosen automatically.
With thousands of images stacked, the resulting resolution achieved is about the square root of the number of frames better than a single image. The single images may look awful.

Because I have always observed visually I immediately spot fakes. In a way every digital image is a fake. The astro photos are chosen to look how the astronomer wants the photo to look.
I have seen images of Jupiter at an impossible angle to the moons. Uranus detail, which I thought was just artifacts. It was, and by a world class imager.

The telescopes are driven automatically to any one of thousands of objects. Star names are used, which were never used in the past because some bright spark inventing the programme decided to be 'clever'.

It is a mad world, but that is how it is.

I just saw a 75mm Newtonian (National Geographic?) selling by Lidl or Aldi for 49.99. It has a solar filter detachable on the front. On a flimsy mount and clearly for children at this time of the year.

I wouldn't go near it. I would not show it to a child. And I suggest no reader here should purchase it unless a very experienced solar observer.

I think that inevitably a child or several will get serious permanent eye damage from one of these scopes.
It is sold for financial gain, without proper regard for safety. To be sold to people with no knowledge of solar observing and how dangerous it is to look at the Sun.
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 19:11   #77
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Originally Posted by jan van daalen View Post
This is the way KODAK and Leica thought about digital photography. The way MAG LITE thought about LED and the list is long.
The future is digital and companies have to look 15 years from now where to stand otherwise they are history.
The youth (next customer) is the future and they want progress. Everybody can call digital optics non progress for them, but it's gonna arrive within 10 years from now.

Jan
Oh, I agree they are coming - I even started a thread about that awhile back - it's just that I see more complexity, fragility, earlier obsolescence and increased costs just to keep up.

All the same reasons I hate cell phones and digital cameras - but use both grudgingly.
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 19:30   #78
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Oh, I agree they are coming - I even started a thread about that awhile back - it's just that I see more complexity, fragility, earlier obsolescence and increased costs just to keep up.


Lee
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 19:46   #79
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Oh, I agree they are coming - I even started a thread about that awhile back - it's just that I see more complexity, fragility, earlier obsolescence and increased costs just to keep up.

All the same reasons I hate cell phones and digital cameras - but use both grudgingly.
Absolutely. History will repeat itself. Digital camera's had a lifetime of 6 months and a better sample from another brand popped up and so it went on and on. It happened with comp's and this will happen with digioptics.
Nightvision was unaffordable 10 years back and now it's common goods. Thermal was platina and now available for a few hunderd bucks.
A few years back I saw a hybrid (optics, nightvision and thermal in one device) which costed 87.000,00 dollar (military issue) and it will reach the consumer market round 10.000,00 dollar in a few years.

Warranty will be brought back to 2 years because of the electronics and sales will be done more and more directly from brands to consumer (vertical integration) which means the price can go down.

Jan
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 20:43   #80
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The one point in which I think digital is a way forward, is as a means to replace the large and cumbersome spotting scope with some hand-held that can achieve a sharp 200 x image in as small package. After all, who wants to lug a scope and 'pod half-way round the world when you might be able to replace it with something that looks more like a palm-sized camcorder?
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 21:42   #81
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Originally Posted by james holdsworth View Post
The one point in which I think digital is a way forward, is as a means to replace the large and cumbersome spotting scope with some hand-held that can achieve a sharp 200 x image in as small package. After all, who wants to lug a scope and 'pod half-way round the world when you might be able to replace it with something that looks more like a palm-sized camcorder?
Hello James,

A 200x image from a device the size of a cucumber, say 16 cm would require:

Image stabilizationten times that used in a 20x current image stabilized binocular.

You would need a long focal length lens, whose optical path might be compressed with prisms, but that would add weight, perhaps combined with a digital zoom and a high resolution imaging screen. To avoid a wide and heavy objective the imager would have to be very sensitive to light as well having high resolution.

For all I know, there might be a military version of something like that but the price would be impractically high for most of us.

Happy bird watching,
Arthur
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 22:34   #82
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To achieve a 200x sharp image would need an aperture of about 100mm, 4 inches.
Realistically 120x is achievable in say a 60mm aperture.

Think the Zeiss 30x60mm Maksutov spotting scope, which is good but vastly underpowered for its true potential.
It could probably take 120x as is with a zoom eyepiece. The optics are probably good enough.
There is a power focus option taking 4 AAs I think, with 3 AAs giving half speed from memory.

The Mirador 30x to 120x 70mm Maksutov is wonderful. Pity it isn't image stabilized.

The military often use Maksutovs for this type of use.

One could at a pinch use 50mm aperture.
The ultra sensitive cameras are already here.
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 22:34   #83
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Originally Posted by james holdsworth View Post
The one point in which I think digital is a way forward, is as a means to replace the large and cumbersome spotting scope with some hand-held that can achieve a sharp 200 x image in as small package. After all, who wants to lug a scope and 'pod half-way round the world when you might be able to replace it with something that looks more like a palm-sized camcorder?
James, Nikon's P900 camera offers an 83x zoom, which can be augmented by 4x digitally at a sacrifice of image quality.
Do note that the 83x refers only to the zoom range, the magnification at full zoom is about 40x, so we're still a little shy of your goal, but it is not far out of reach.
It seems that cameras can outperform scopes in compactness, perhaps because they can be built to a very exact focus distance. With displays getting steadily better, your dream product is entirely feasible, once you accept that you'll never be able to look through it.
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 22:45   #84
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The Nikon P900 is bigger than the P610 and considerably heavier.
The reason is that the high magnification is limited by the front aperture of the zoom lens.
These cameras are at or near the resolution limits of the front aperture of their lenses.

I have the P610, which is great. The P900 is too heavy for me.
If one looks at the resolution of cameras it is the front aperture that is the limiting factor.
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 23:23   #85
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I really resent this discussion about cameras in a Leica Noctivid thread.

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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 23:27   #86
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Accepting Jan van Daalen's informed estimate of 10 years to digital suggests that the Noctivid is likely to be Leicas last conventional model.
Presumably there will be midlife upgrade, a Noctivid Ultra perhaps, but even so, we have an opportunity to buy a bona fide historical artifact.
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Old Sunday 27th November 2016, 23:36   #87
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Please stay on topic guys.
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Old Monday 28th November 2016, 01:34   #88
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I really resent this discussion about cameras in a Leica Noctivid thread.

Hermann
Yeah, I contributed to that and apologize. That said, I'm getting itchy for more real world tests of a Noctivid...
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Old Monday 28th November 2016, 03:22   #89
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I really resent this discussion about cameras in a Leica Noctivid thread.

Hermann
Hi Hermann,

Think I was the guilty party kicking off the thread's drift to digital.
My apologies, there was no intention to hijack it.

One does though sense a hunger for innovation on this forum.
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Old Monday 28th November 2016, 13:53   #90
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And apologies from me.
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Old Tuesday 29th November 2016, 22:56   #91
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Was out with new Nvids in what was a sunny day today, all i can keep saying is they are the best i have owned or used, but accept this is imho, Canada next spring is going to be joyous, retina melting 'Yank Warblers", probably need welding goggles afterwards.
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Old Wednesday 30th November 2016, 20:53   #92
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Was out with new Nvids in what was a sunny day today, all i can keep saying is they are the best i have owned or used, but accept this is imho, Canada next spring is going to be joyous, retina melting 'Yank Warblers", probably need welding goggles afterwards.

Hey, most of those ''yanks'' actually spent most of their time on territory in Canada or on the wintering grounds in the tropics / sub-tropics. The ''yank'' portion is mostly just transit to and from their final destinations.

And, yes, this post was deliberately pedantic.
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Old Sunday 11th December 2016, 12:54   #93
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Thank you, GG.

That latter point is a very good observation, and I fully agree with you and expect Leica will exactly do that (they are in fact the ones who have made in the past that kind of continuous improvements over time)

Regarding the first point, maybe I did not make myself clear enough, and I appreciate you bringing it up:

I think the Noctivid "beats"the competition on
- mechanics, esp. the focus /diopter mechanism
- well "rounded" field of view, very comfortable in panning (yes, the SF has a much wider field of view, but that, together with the distortion characteristics, comes at the the price of a massive globe effect, esp. in the 8x SF)
- warm, attractive, "cozy" image with high level of sharpness and contrast. As I said, I so far preferred the "cold" images provided by the SFs and EL SVs over the saturated image of the Ultravid, but the Noctivid seems to combine color saturation with a high level of "sharpness".

Of course, everybody's eyes are different, and I would never dare to go and buy an expensive bino just based on someone else's impressions. As you say, you will have to go and see for yourself.

And, of course as well, a number of very subjective factors also influence your decision when selecting a nice binocular - just think of the criteria based on which most people, myself included, buys cars ;-)
If I had to make a rating of the reviewed six binos in the sense of "which alpha binocular would you buy and, if it were not available, what would be your next pick?", I would probably say the following, based on many - more or less subjective - factors (this is current thinking and subject to getting wiser - I probably shouldn't even write this down):
1. EL SV
2. SF
3. Noctivid
4. HT
5. Ultravid
6. EDG

So the Noctivid made it right away and easily to rank 3 - as mentioned, it didn't blow me away, but it placed itself solidly among the top tier binos right away - not so bad after all !

Canip
Interesting! I've had the NV 8x42s since day of release and have tested them alongside UVs, SFs and SVs,(though not HTs) with (so far) 16 different hard-core birding friends, under all sorts of different lighting conditions, repeatedly swapping bins around. Everyone (bar one SF user who loves the wide field of view) felt that the NVs delivered a noticeably superior image. Several have already changed to NVs and others have expressed an intention to do so as soon as they can afford it! It's clearly all in the eye of the beholder
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Old Sunday 11th December 2016, 13:20   #94
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the SF has a much wider field of view, but that, together with the distortion characteristics, comes at the the price of a massive globe effect, esp. in the 8x SF)
Canip
Undoubtedly some people experience globe effect in the SF, but this is the first time I have seen it descibed as 'massive'.

Rolling Globe is such a personal thing I try to take care and mention that I am not prone to seeing it in any model.

Lee
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Old Sunday 11th December 2016, 15:39   #95
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I didn't see it in any of the SVs, neither in the SF. The only place I've ever experienced it was in the Leupold McKinley 8X42, I wasn't that bothered by it.

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Originally Posted by Troubador View Post
Undoubtedly some people experience globe effect in the SF, but this is the first time I have seen it descibed as 'massive'.

Rolling Globe is such a personal thing I try to take care and mention that I am not prone to seeing it in any model.

Lee
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Old Sunday 11th December 2016, 16:11   #96
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The angular magnification distortion that causes the Globe Effect or "rolling ball" is not subjective at all. It can be photographed, measured and seen by everyone by moving a small circular object from the field center to the field edge. When I read a review I'm not interested in whether a particular individual has or doesn't have an unpleasant experience from the distortion, only whether the distortion is there and how much there is.

My one experience with an 8x42 SF is the same as Canip's. There was a "massive" amount of angular magnification distortion near the field edge. The inevitable Globe Effect that results will bother some and not others.
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Old Sunday 11th December 2016, 16:56   #97
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The angular magnification distortion that causes the Globe Effect or "rolling ball" is not subjective at all. It can be photographed, measured and seen by everyone by moving a small circular object from the field center to the field edge. When I read a review I'm not interested in whether a particular individual has or doesn't have an unpleasant experience from the distortion, only whether the distortion is there and how much there is.

My one experience with an 8x42 SF is the same as Canip's. There was a "massive" amount of angular magnification distortion near the field edge. The inevitable Globe Effect that results will bother some and not others.
You may well be able to discover the degree of AMD present but that won't predict who will see it and who won't. And I assert that it is subjective in the sense that I don't see this distortion when I pan. Its not that I see it but am not bothered by it. I don't see it at all. And as far as I can understand there are folks like me who don't perceive it, some that do but can get used to it, and some who cannot tolerate it at all, but I don't know of any test that can predict these responses and so help people to understand whether they might be affected by a particular model or not. If there was such a test I would be interested in reading about it.

Lee

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Old Sunday 11th December 2016, 17:21   #98
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Same with CA, I've been scolded several times for going on about seeing to much of it in the 10X50SV, the scolding by people who don't see it to any degree and aren't bothered by it, go figure.

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You may well be able to discover the degree of AMD present but that won't predict who will see it and who won't. And I assert that it is subjective in the sense that I don't see this distortion when I pan. Its not that I see it but am not bothered by it. I don't see it at all. And as far as I can understand there are folks like me who don't perceive it, some that do but can get used to it, and some who cannot tolerate it at all, but I don't know of any test that can predict these responses and so help people to understand whether they might be affected by a particular model or not.

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Old Sunday 11th December 2016, 17:31   #99
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Same with CA, I've been scolded several times for going on about seeing to much of it in the 10X50SV, the scolding by people who don't see it to any degree and aren't bothered by it, go figure.
SD

You are right SD. Plenty of folks are bothered by CA and plenty don't see it. Though at least with CA there is something you can do to minimise the likelihood of encountering CA ie ensuring you are viewing on axis through the bins and not slightly above or below or to one side. Wearing spectacles it is easy to slip off axis and then encounter CA. I've done this myself and with a bit of effort corrected it. I am pretty sure some spectacle lens shapes make it easier to slip off axis than others as this only started for me with my last pair. I got around it after a bit of effort and my new specs (just acquired) don't do this at all. But specs and slipping off axis probably only accounts for a tiny proportion of folks with CA problems.

Lee
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Old Sunday 11th December 2016, 19:25   #100
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Hi Lee,
My glasses introduce CA of their own, although I don't wear them when using binoculars.

I use the full Moon to see how much change in magnification there is at the edges.
Nowadays I don't like magnification change or CA, although I may have tolerated it years ago.

The strangest experience really was using a top quality Ross 100mm f/15 triplet objective. There was no false colour of any kind and it seemed bizarre for a refractor.

5,000 not out Lee, hopefully.

Congratulations.

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