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Review of 8x25 Victory Pocket

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Old Sunday 1st September 2019, 18:13   #326
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"That is not to say my experiences will be the same as yours or anyone else's, but for me the 8x25 Victory Pocket is a much easier overall viewing experience than any 8x32 I've owned or sampled."

I don't doubt you but I find it very interesting that the 8x25 is an easier viewing experience than an 8x32 and it has easier eye placement. It makes me wonder why because usually an 8x32 will be easier than an 8x25 for most people because of the bigger exit pupil. The only thing I can think of is the Zeiss Victory 8x25 just fits you perfect. Do you wear glasses? Everybody is different when it comes to binoculars fitting them. Your lucky if you find that to be true because you can carry a lighter, smaller binocular. I wish I could find an 8x25 I like better than my 8x32's. There is no doubt the Zeiss Victory 8x25 is a fine compact and it pushes the envelope of performance for compacts.

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Old Monday 2nd September 2019, 00:12   #327
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Shouldn't the conclusion just be that we all have our preferences based on usage case, steadiness of holding, different preference-balance between lightness/weight and light/enlargement... ?

I only have my Zeiss Pocket 8x25 for two weeks or so now, and didn't have that much time to test them, but I think the conclusion won't change much for me(!):
  • my 10,5x42 will be my go-to for pure nature/bird observation walks
  • the pocket will be my go-to for hiking, bike camping, all other walks for which 'observing' is not thť main purpose etc. ...(once I have the accessories sorted :-( ): very compact and light, still very comfortable to use, super sharp...
  • ...but I think I'll recommend a 8x30 (maybe Kite Lynx HD) to my parents, who are looking for one single pair of binoculars, and for which I think the weight+viewing angle+exit pupil will be the best all-in-one. Still, I would rather have them test it before in a shop. If that's not possible, I'll bring my two binoculars (10x42 & 8x25) for them to test, to see the pro's and con's that they(!) notice and find important or bothering when using them.

The weight and size difference between the (any) 8x25 and 10.5x42 is huge and will be defining which one I'll take, making them a very complementary 2-binoculars-set for me.
They are both easy and comfortable enough to use for me. (Important e.g. for me personally is having a small enough minimal IPD!! Many won't care, but that's priceless for me.) Comparing them optically, the difference in brightness was negligible for me at(/just after) sunset, offset by the impressive contrast and sharpness of the pockets. That really surprised me: no compact I tested (be it however probably 10 or 15 years ago) succeeded in that. (However, maybe the difference would be noticeable with a new, but very expensive *alpha* 10x42.)
It's actually the 8x instead of 10x that is the main thing that I'll be missing when taking the pockets.
Should I have bought the 10x25? I don't know. I found a deal I couldn't refuse for a 8x25 and jumped. Maybe I should still find a place to try the 10x25. But if the ease of use and comfort take a significant dip (for me or e.g. my partner), the 8x25 will remain: I want to be able to share my binoculars when viewing something during a walk and have the others (e.g. old & young within the family) also enjoy it.
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Old Monday 2nd September 2019, 00:56   #328
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I have shallow eye sockets so I have a hard time finding binoculars with long enough eye cups to match the eye relief so on many binoculars I have to cup my hands around the eye cups and rest them against my forehead to avoid blackouts or rest them on my eyebrows. This is the reason I have trouble with the Zeiss Victory 8x25. I have to float them too far away from my eyes to avoid blackouts. The SV 8x32's eye cups are just barely long enough. The ONLY two binoculars I have found that have long enough eye cups are the Canon 10x42 IS-L which I had and the Swarovski SV 12x50 which I have. On these two I can actually use the eye cups on the 2nd click stop and not fully extended with no black outs. I love the 12x50 SV for this reason and it is the easiest binocular I have ever had for eye placement. I can cram my eyes up to the eye cups and get absolutely NO BLACKOUTS. Wonderful!

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Old Monday 2nd September 2019, 12:17   #329
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What i've found - and this pertains to this discussion - is that each binocular requires its own approach to placement; eyecups fully or partially extended, fully retracted, jammed against the eyes or rested on the eyebrows, or just 'hovered' in front of the eyes.
The Pocket almost seems to live in its own section of the binocular world. While undoubtedly a compact, it doesn't behave like one in any way, other than losing a little light at the extremes of the day. I use it as much with the eyecups retracted as extended (not so easy in the plane above horizontal however) and use it about as much as i do my FL 8x32mm.
Moving from one to the other however requires adaption time. Once this is done, i am reminded of why i would never, never, never sell the FL. While there is that off-axis astigmatism, this is something that has never impacted on anything i've ever used them for, and has to be 'found' to be noticed. Those fat barrels, that solidity giving compactness but resistance to windy conditions, that accessible and perfect focus wheel and just the overall reliability...
I can induce CA a little more easily in the Pocket than the FL, and the FL's fabled robustness means it remains the go-to when the terrain is unknown or the circumstances unpredictable.
The Pocket though remains a phenomenal device, probably peerless in the size category. I honestly believe that - if i didn't own bins i really can't part with - i could cope with just owning this and not feel i was losing much.
I've now used it in a Portuguese Indian summer, and East Anglian winter, used it on estuaries, heaths, mountains, woodland and even sea-watching and have yet to be let down by it once.
It i could swear to its durability in a range of tougher conditions (including hand stability in high winds) it would be the perfect 10. So there!
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Old Sunday 8th September 2019, 21:26   #330
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ailevin View Post
Love the binocular, hate the case. The same is true of the SF 8x42. I've ordered Maven bags and hard cases for both. An Amazon basics compact camera case also works quite well for the folded 8x25. I will also pocket them in a cleared coat or pants pocket.

Alan
Hi Alan,
Could you tell which Maven bag and hard case you have for the Zeiss Pocket and how it fits?
Iím especially curious about the hard case, as Iím looking for one that would be a good fit for this small binocular when folded/closed, being as compact as possible but still a good fit and well protecting.
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Old Sunday 8th September 2019, 23:35   #331
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Hi mbb,

The case/bag I got are for the B3/C2 binoculars. I called Maven because I found the case but not the bag in their accessories page online. I was able to get the bag with the case as a sort of special order. I have always found folks at Maven are very helpful.

I have the Maven 8x30 and 9x45 and each came with a double layer cloth bag and a zippered "hard case." To my surprise I really like the cloth bag. It adds little bulk or weight to store these ruggedized binoculars, and i tend to treat them with some care anyway. I use only the bag 80% of the time, but I use the case for extra protection when I travel.

The Maven 8x30 is larger and bulkier than the Zeiss 8x25, so there is plenty of room in the bag. I just fold the top quarter of the bag over after I've put the binoculars in and pulled the draw string. The case is very a plain single zipper thing that opens completely flat; no pockets or dividers. it has a handle as well as clips at top for a shoulder strap. If the 8x25 is folded tight in the bag, it does tend to swim in the hard case just a little bit. On the rare occasions that I use the hard case with the 8x25 I open the binocular more and wrap another cloth around the case. If you want a smaller case or a case that can clip on you belt, then most any compact camera case will do. I have a LowePro and an Amazon Basics case that I could use, but I prefer either the bag or keeping them folded and in a pants or jacket pocket

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Old Monday 9th September 2019, 02:02   #332
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I should get around to posting a picture for reference but I'm using Op Tech Mini QD Loops attached to an appropriately thin piece of webbing strap using bits and pieces I had (plastic buckles etc). Case wise I'm using the Op Tech Soft Pouch-Photo/Electronics, Wide Body Medium (I removed the plastic belt clip by unpicking the stitching as it seemed pretty useless to me).
I really like this setup, perfect for me. By no means am I peddling Op Tech, this is just what I found most accommodating of my requirements.
Still really enjoying my Pockets, of course.

Last edited by F88 : Monday 9th September 2019 at 02:54.
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Old Monday 9th September 2019, 04:52   #333
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I hope these quick phone pics can help with some strap and case ideas.
"Home made" strap from left over buckles, webbing strap and shrink wrap with QD loops (alternatively I could have just threaded the strap through the QD buckles, folded and stitched it together as I have no need to adjust the length once set).
Case with clip removed (pic 4).
Eye cups are always kept extended in use and in case. Binoculars are folded for case storage, the fit is roomy enough to easily stow or remove without being excessively large. Although I never stow the neck strap it could easily fit also, I tend to leave it out, as shown, or simply wrap it around the case.
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Last edited by F88 : Monday 9th September 2019 at 13:37.
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Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 10:08   #334
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
In the binocular poll below 51% of birders prefer the 8x32 and .93% prefer the 8x25 format.
In the field I mostly meet the very active birders, and I see 80% 10x42, the odd 8x42 and 8,5x42 included in this number.
I see 10% x50/56 and even less 10% x32.

So what people who watch birds everyday prefer, is not the same as what you are referencing to (a poll in a binogeek section of a birder forum).

So obviously, that poll doesn't say anything about what's preferred in real life by people who go birding a lot.
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Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 11:09   #335
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In the field I mostly meet the very active birders, and I see 80% 10x42, the odd 8x42 and 8,5x42 included in this number.
I see 10% x50/56 and even less 10% x32.

So what people who watch birds everyday prefer, is not the same as what you are referencing to (a poll in a binogeek section of a birder forum).

So obviously, that poll doesn't say anything about what's preferred in real life by people who go birding a lot.
Aren't the words birder and geek synonymous anyway?
Maybe if I ever become a hardcore enough birder I'll get myself a 10x42.

Homer: Oh people can come up with statistics to prove anything Kent. Forfty percent of all people know that.

Last edited by F88 : Tuesday 10th September 2019 at 11:14.
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Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 14:57   #336
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I did not like the clam case, so have found an alternative case which allows for an opticron style dust cover and two rifle scope flip ups for the objectives. Not waterproof but will minimise dust and grit ingress . Not to everyone’s taste I’m sure but practical for me.

https://i.imgur.com/GPeNRmw.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/Ut6MmaO.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/QjXevZ0.jpg

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Old Wednesday 11th September 2019, 13:07   #337
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Originally Posted by riffler View Post
I did not like the clam case, so have found an alternative case which allows for an opticron style dust cover and two rifle scope flip ups for the objectives. Not waterproof but will minimise dust and grit ingress . Not to everyone’s taste I’m sure but practical for me.

https://i.imgur.com/GPeNRmw.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/Ut6MmaO.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/QjXevZ0.jpg

Interesting setup! I was also looking for such flip-open/close objective covers, either such rifle scope ones, or lighter/simpler ones for compact binoculars. Could you send a link to which covers and case you've bought?
Are those covers 34mm or 35mm ones (interior diameter) and how well do they fit? Because the barrel isn't perfectly round, I'm not sure if I should go for 34 or for 35 mm.
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Old Wednesday 11th September 2019, 15:52   #338
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MBB....i bought the cheapest flip ups i could find. It's an experiment for me as I've only ever used them on my riflescopes, not on bins.
Cheap so that if they didn't fit I wouldn't feel hard done by :)

As it happens I'm very pleased with them, fitting them so that they flip out each side, rather than up or down.

I bought the 34mm version. They are a good snug fit and I had to push them on firmly.
I know what you mean about the external of the objective not being regular all round, there are a couple of tiny ridges aren't there?

These 34's won't fall off, they conform to the odd shape but the lid still closes with a firm snap.

I got them here

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/RIFLE-SCO...72.m2749.l2649
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Old Thursday 12th September 2019, 05:59   #339
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From the top of the Eiffel tower, I watched the planes land at Roissy at sundown yesterday. That's a distance of something like 20Km!

I could clearly make out the parked planes and control tower.

The Pocket was giving me a much sharper view than my 7x42 UV HD, and I got no eyestrain. My poor 8 year old son was forced to use the Leica


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Old Wednesday 25th September 2019, 19:43   #340
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Opticron compact case?

Has anybody tried the following Opticron compact binocular case with the Zeiss Pocket 10x25, folded/closed, but including rainguard+cover+small(original)strap ?

"21053 Compact Binocular Case in soft neoprene for roof prism 25mm"

https://www.opticron.co.uk/our-produ...oof-prism-25mm

I like the design (turned zip-closing + lugs for strap).
The internal dimensions written there are 120x75x45 mm = 4.7x3x1.8 inch.
This might be a possible, though tight fit, if it's flexible enough, in which case it might be a nice compact and good protection.


Or maybe the "21052 Compact Binocular Case in soft neoprene for porro prism 25mm" with internal dimensions 110x95x40 cm = 4.3x3.7x1.6 inch.
https://www.opticron.co.uk/our-produ...rro-prism-25mm

Last edited by mbb : Wednesday 25th September 2019 at 20:00.
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Old Monday 14th October 2019, 22:39   #341
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I received my Opticron compact rainguard and flip-open objective covers a week ago, and Iím quite happy with it. Iíll try to post some picture later on, as I think the combination with those objective caps might interest some. I stumbled across the Opticron objective covers while looking for the rainguard and they are a good fit.

There are only two, small negative points:
I find the rainguard a bit too stiff to fold in fully closed position, having the impression the rainguard is giving a bit of Ďfold back opení pressure to the binoculars. I would like to solve that somehow. (I did cut off one small bit of the unused strap loops,as recommended by others in this thread.)
Because of the thickness of the caps/rainguard, the binoculars doesnít fully fully close anymore, but that is perfectly normal of course. You canít have it all.

Otherwise, these are really the protective elements I was looking for, which I donít get why Zeiss does not supply with the scope... It otherwise really is an amazing scope, continuing to impress me for its image quality and use comfort in such a small size.

Apart from a small bag, Iím just thinking of trying out the ultra light binocular harness from Bushnell/RickYoung to have it steady on my chest when cycling or on heavier mountain hikes, even though Iím wondering if thatís a good idea with those small strap attachment loops of the Zeiss pocket (Maybe Iím wrong, but such small attachment loops and thus small strap ends seem like asking for trouble under heavy use.) But than I should really stop looking for the perfect setup accessories
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Old Tuesday 15th October 2019, 20:25   #342
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MBB,

The Vortex compact rainguard is another option that works well with or without slight modification but does not allow the bin to be folded any more completely than the Opticron and the Opticron version is a bit handier for me in actual use.

I also use the Rick Young harness on the Victory Pocket and wouldn't do it any other way. However, I did remove the metal split rings and use small zip ties to attach the harness instead.

On another note, I notice you got the 10x rather than the 8x. I love the 8x and so am tempted by the 10 as well but have never tried a 10 VP. Did you have a chance to compare the two before you bought? If so, what are your thoughts?

Thanks,

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Old Wednesday 16th October 2019, 00:24   #343
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I don’t have the 10x25, but the 8x25.
While I like 10x magnification on a 40mm (I do prefer 10x to 8x given good ergonomics), I couldn’t have believed it to give good results on a 25mm based on small binoculars I’ve briefly had in my hands many years ago. Thus, when I stumbled across a tremendous deal for the 8x25 Pocket, I went for it. As it greatly surpassed my expectations, I’m now wondering exactly the same as you: how would that Victory Pocket 10x25 be and would I like it more? I’m really curious about it and would love to try one out.
However, I probably couldn’t convince myself to buy yet another one budget wise. The Pocket 8x25 is that good and I’d rather first either upgrade my larger bin (given how the Victory Pocket impresses me,I’m tremendously curious about the Victory sf 10x42,but it is very/to expensive) or rather buy my first scope to have a nice flexible set: a great compact 25mm bin, a good standard 40mm bin and than also a good scope (I’ve just posted a question yesterday for recommendations on a relatively portable scope, on the scope forum section :-). )
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Old Monday 13th January 2020, 13:34   #344
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I just bought a pair of the Victory 8x25. Wow, most small binoculars I have tried in the past, I didn't get on with at all, but these feel quite natural.

I bought them for their close focus mainly, for insect and reptile surveys., where I have recently been borrowing an old pair of Opticron 8x32s, with a similar close focus.

I get that they are never going to compare with the latest 8x42 etc, but what about older models?.. my main birding bins are Duovid 8+12x42s. Whilst these have been ideal for my needs (Seabird surveys from ferries where the 12x has been very useful over the years), comparing the Duovid with the Pocket in my garden, all the noticeable differences at 8x, are weight and closer focus of the pocket!.

I've yet to use the Pockets for a day birding, but can see them replacing the Duovids in everything except the ferry surveys.
That would see me using a Pocket 8x25, plus an ATX95 scope in the field, which seems wacky.
Has anyone else gone all in with the Pockets full time for birding?
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Old Monday 13th January 2020, 14:38   #345
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In the field I mostly meet the very active birders, and I see 80% 10x42, the odd 8x42 and 8,5x42 included in this number.
I see 10% x50/56 and even less 10% x32.

So what people who watch birds everyday prefer, is not the same as what you are referencing to (a poll in a binogeek section of a birder forum).

So obviously, that poll doesn't say anything about what's preferred in real life by people who go birding a lot.
Going back in time a few months but this is interesting to read Temmie!

I've never made an official tally but I'd say that in S America, looking at active / dedicated birders, both local and foreigners, I see 8x42 as the by far dominant format, and 10x42 and 8x32 in 2nd and 3rd spots though not sure which of the two is relatively more common. 8x42 must be 70-80% of what I see, guessing?

I do not think I've ever seen a binocular larger than x42 in use in the field other than the odd x50 poro seen in use by a local birder here and there. I see the occasional x30 porro as well, again by local birders more. I have seen very few 8x30 roofs (Nikon and Swaro). There may have been a couple of 10x32 and 10x30's mixed in with the 8x but I've not noticed.
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Old Monday 13th January 2020, 16:29   #346
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...I get that they are never going to compare with the latest 8x42 etc,...
Has anyone else gone all in with the Pockets full time for birding?
I think you've answered your own question. Except with respect to brightness in low-light conditions, the optical and handling characteristics of the Zeiss 8x25 Victory are so good that all-in-all, their performance is competitive with or superior to that of many older large-format binoculars for birding. Others may find your choice of bin and scope an odd one, but if you are happy with that high level of performance, it is completely within the bounds of reason. However, in the very best of current 8x32 or 8x42 binoculars, you will find a higher level of performance. If you are never satisfied with having anything less than the best, and if you are willing to use something heavier, you will have to investigate one of those bins as your primary birding bin. I am super happy with the 8x25 Victory but I have to admit that I can do a bit better with the Swarovski 8.5x42 EL SV, so it is my primary dedicated-birding bin. But for all other uses, including much natural history related travel etc, the Victory is so good I never wish I had more with me.

--AP
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Old Tuesday 14th January 2020, 11:50   #347
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I think you've answered your own question. Except with respect to brightness in low-light conditions, the optical and handling characteristics of the Zeiss 8x25 Victory are so good that all-in-all, their performance is competitive with or superior to that of many older large-format binoculars for birding. Others may find your choice of bin and scope an odd one, but if you are happy with that high level of performance, it is completely within the bounds of reason. However, in the very best of current 8x32 or 8x42 binoculars, you will find a higher level of performance. If you are never satisfied with having anything less than the best, and if you are willing to use something heavier, you will have to investigate one of those bins as your primary birding bin. I am super happy with the 8x25 Victory but I have to admit that I can do a bit better with the Swarovski 8.5x42 EL SV, so it is my primary dedicated-birding bin. But for all other uses, including much natural history related travel etc, the Victory is so good I never wish I had more with me.

--AP
Hi Alexis, thanks for your thoughts.
I only typically have a single pair of binoculars at a time.
It's tempting, not least in that selling my Duovids would pay for a flight and car for a week to somewhere new!

I think my main concern would be that it would be storing up trouble for further down the line, when the next upgrade came along. I would have very little to trade up from, almost like starting from scratch.

Sounds like i'll be keeping both for now. waiting for the next Zeiss 8x32, or a used pair of 8x42SF's
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Old Thursday 23rd January 2020, 10:51   #348
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One thing I have noticed with these smaller binoculars.. The eyecups occasionally "tickle"! my eyelashes, something I have never experienced before, usually with larger models, and it is really irritating!
Members of my family have forbidden me to clip my eyelashes, stating i'll look ridiculous.

if I start bursting out laughing when using them, and flushing birds, then they will be going back!
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Old Thursday 23rd January 2020, 13:07   #349
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One thing I have noticed with these smaller binoculars.. The eyecups occasionally "tickle"! my eyelashes, something I have never experienced before, usually with larger models, and it is really irritating!
Members of my family have forbidden me to clip my eyelashes, stating i'll look ridiculous.

if I start bursting out laughing when using them, and flushing birds, then they will be going back!
Why don't you cut them, then buy some artificial eyelashes to wear when in the company of your family? No-one cares about looks when they're out birding, do they?
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Old Thursday 23rd January 2020, 14:38   #350
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Originally Posted by peter.jones View Post
One thing I have noticed with these smaller binoculars.. The eyecups occasionally "tickle"! my eyelashes, something I have never experienced before, usually with larger models, and it is really irritating!
Members of my family have forbidden me to clip my eyelashes, stating i'll look ridiculous.

if I start bursting out laughing when using them, and flushing birds, then they will be going back!
Peter. don't you mean your eyelashes are touching the eyelens? If so this means your eyelashes are more than 9mm long since this is how far the eyecups unscrew. That seems a lot so forgive me for asking: are you sure you have unscrewed the eyecups all the way out?

These binos with small diameter objectives (25mm) necessarily only have eyecups with a small external diameter and it is very easy, if you don't wear spectacles. to push these eyecups into your eye sockets and of course this brings the eye lenses into contact with your eyelashes. You can help this a bit by not pushing them into your sockets so firmly but this can be hard to control in the heat of a birding moment. One solution would be to get some thick rubber bands and twist them around the eyecups close to the rim so that, in effect, the external diameter of the eyecup is increased and it will not find it so easy to bury itself so deeply into your eye sockets. Its a low cost solution so why not try it out?

Lee
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Last edited by Troubador : Thursday 23rd January 2020 at 14:59.
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