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x32 SF: the waiting begins

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Old Sunday 2nd June 2019, 01:55   #101
Pinewood
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Hello Elkcub, Paddy7, and Lee,

All very good answers. My 10x32 is fourteen years old; my 8x32 a few months newer. It would take a great improvement to buy a replacement. In another ten years, some such may even turn up.

Happy bird watching,
Arthur
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Old Monday 3rd June 2019, 06:06   #102
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Likewise. Anything new would likely have a marginally improved optical performance, but what i like about the FL is the whole package - dimensions, build quality, the way it fits my hand/eyes etc. If Zeiss are tempted by AK prisms in a new SF 32mm, the dimensions are likely to change.
My 8x32 FL is 12 years old, half of that with me; no plans to 'upgrade' any time soon!
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Old Monday 3rd June 2019, 09:10   #103
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If Zeiss are tempted by AK prisms in a new SF 32mm, the dimensions are likely to change.
Now then, if Zeiss were actually to introduce an SF 8x32 with AK prisms, I'd be very tempted to get one. I can live with the greater length and slightly increased weight given the optical advantages of AK prisms.

Mind you, what I'd like even more is a new Zeiss porro.

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Old Monday 3rd June 2019, 14:08   #104
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Now then, if Zeiss were actually to introduce an SF 8x32 with AK prisms, I'd be very tempted to get one. I can live with the greater length and slightly increased weight given the optical advantages of AK prisms.

Mind you, what I'd like even more is a new Zeiss porro.

Hermann
"Mind you, what I'd like even more is a new Zeiss porro." Exactly! An updated 8x32 porro with the best HT glass and the latest coatings and about a 450 foot FOV with 97% transmission. That would be awesome and very possible to achieve. They could sell it for about $1K.

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Old Monday 3rd June 2019, 14:45   #105
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Now then, if Zeiss were actually to introduce an SF 8x32 with AK prisms, I'd be very tempted to get one.

Hermann
A 32 with AKs? Tasty!!

Lee
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Old Monday 3rd June 2019, 15:59   #106
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A 32 with AKs? Tasty!!

Lee
Lee,

Do you know if there have ever been any 32mm roof prism binoculars made with AK prisms?

Bob
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Old Monday 3rd June 2019, 16:47   #107
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Lee,

Do you know if there have ever been any 32mm roof prism binoculars made with AK prisms?

Bob
I have never heard of one Bob. But just because it ain't been done, doesn't mean it can't. Zeiss's HT 8x42 complete with AK prisms is the same 160mm length as Swarovski's EL SP-loaded 8.5x42 so perhaps AK prisms don't always mean longer binos than those with SPs.

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Old Monday 3rd June 2019, 21:39   #108
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My 10x32 is fourteen years old; my 8x32 a few months newer. It would take a great improvement to buy a replacement. In another ten years, some such may even turn up.
Exactly! The same situation in our household.

I had the 8x42 SF for two weeks for a testing of 6 glasses (Swarovski, Steiner, Olympus, ...) , and was fascinated. As I had to send the glasses back, I seriously thought about buying the SF.

But when I used my 8x32 FL again (which I did not for this two weeks) I was cured at once. The SF is better, no question, but not so much more better, that I would sell my FL.

My wife never would give away her 10x32FL.
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Old Tuesday 4th June 2019, 03:38   #109
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I don't think there is any way Zeiss would use an AK prism in a new 8x32 SF. The AK prism takes more room and it would be more difficult to design a compact 32mm around it and besides the 8x42 SF with it's SP prism already beat the 8x42 Zeiss HT with it's AK prism in the marketplace so that is proof that people care more about other things than a few % of light transmission like ergonomics and flat field optics. I am sure if Zeiss comes out with a new 8x32 SF it will be a scaled down 8x42 SF within the design parameters of a smaller frame binocular. The 8x32 FL is a scaled down 8x42 FL and the 8x32 SV is a scaled down 8.5x42 SV. I think the big improvements over the 8x32 FL with the smaller SF would be a flat field, sharper edges, bigger FOV and less astigmatism with better ergonomics and a slimmer better balanced design just like the 8x42 SF. You can design a darn good binocular using an SP prism. Case in point is the 8x32 FL, 8x32 SV and the 8x32 EDG.

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Old Tuesday 4th June 2019, 21:31   #110
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.
My wife never would give away her 10x32FL.
Well, my wife does not want to give away her Zeiss Victory I 10x40. So not everything happening about these binoculars must necessarily be fully rational.
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Old Tuesday 4th June 2019, 22:00   #111
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Do you know if there have ever been any 32mm roof prism binoculars made with AK prisms?
I'm not Lee, but I'm pretty sure there were 8x30s with AK prisms sometime last century, most likely made by Hensold.

I'll check the literature when (or rather "if") I find the time.

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Old Tuesday 4th June 2019, 22:11   #112
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Well, my wife does not want to give away her Zeiss Victory I 10x40. So not everything happening about these binoculars must necessarily be fully rational.
Mind you, those old Victory I's weren't bad at all - except for their excessive CA and the glare problem the early models had. I'm not that susceptible to CA, so that never bothered me that much, and the glare problem disappeared after Zeiss made a few changes (that were never officially announced). Before the SF came along the 10x40 was the Zeiss with the highest image quality near the edge of the field, clearly better IMO than the FL that succeeded it.

I got my Victory 10x40s as soon as they came out and sent them to Zeiss to have them adjust the focuser which I found a bit too loose for my liking, and when I got it back I found they had also made a few changes that virtually eliminated the glare problem.

In fact, I still like the Victory 10x40 quite a lot. Nice pair, with an easy, contrasty view, and fairly light for a 10x40.

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Old Tuesday 4th June 2019, 23:47   #113
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Hello,

Would anyone care to comment on what he considers to be the useful lifetime of an "alpha" binocular and even how often a manufacturer should redesign a product? Perhaps, time to upgrade is solely dependent on the introduction of new technology. The short lived, original Zeiss Victory, not the FL line, was rather unimpressive. The FL line claimed to reduce chromatic aberration and a better colour rendition and had a generally positive reception. The SF line's improvements were better ergonomics and wider field. Was that enough to encourage anyone to an early upgrade?
I have no way of proving this, but I suspect more SF (or HT) owners may have owned Dialyts, and maybe Victory Is/Night Owls, than FLs. The FLs, especially late models, are good enough that most owners might balk at shelling out just for the SF field of view and ergonomics. But if you had say a P* model Dialyt and not upgraded to the FL, you'd be stepping forward two generations rather than one.

The supposition that a x32 SF will feature Abbe-Koening prisms is IMO ludicrous, given that the larger SFs, which have the space for them, don't. Flat field and larger field of view are much more likely, and the latter at least will demand larger prisms and thus a larger binocular than the x32 FLs - but the x42 SFs are larger than the competition anyway.

As for Zeiss getting back into porros - cannot remotely see that happening either. They have in fact been trying to simplify their product line by deleting the x42 HTs and things like the 7x50B.
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Old Wednesday 5th June 2019, 00:28   #114
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Well, my wife does not want to give away her Zeiss Victory I 10x40. So not everything happening about these binoculars must necessarily be fully rational.
Hello Swissboy,

As Patudo points out that binocular had a view with great contrast. I noticed that in the 8x40 Victory 1, as well.

I think that WJC has pointed out that a lot of improvements may be beyond human perception. At my age, that is probably the case. a half degree of greater FOV, is probably nore noteworthy than a few percentage points of increased transmission. I think that colour correction and contrast improvements may be more noticeable than increased resolution.

Marketing is more about convincing people that they need a product than having a significantly better product, and there are many nature lovers who will be convinced that they need something new.

Happy bird watching,
Arthur
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Old Wednesday 5th June 2019, 06:07   #115
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Hello Swissboy,

As Patudo points out that binocular had a view with great contrast. I noticed that in the 8x40 Victory 1, as well.

I think that WJC has pointed out that a lot of improvements may be beyond human perception. At my age, that is probably the case. a half degree of greater FOV, is probably nore noteworthy than a few percentage points of increased transmission. I think that colour correction and contrast improvements may be more noticeable than increased resolution.

Marketing is more about convincing people that they need a product than having a significantly better product, and there are many nature lovers who will be convinced that they need something new.

Happy bird watching,
Arthur
Plus of course there is a new market developing all the time - retirees, looking for a nice relaxing hobby and being presented with what is currently top of the tree to spend their retirement pot on.
They would probably just see SFs, SVs, UVHD+ as the guv'nors, and not even be aware of previous generation models.
I was told once that what is called 'the grey pound' in the UK is a major commercial consideration.
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