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.

Nikon 8x32 SE review - vs. Habicht and Swarovision

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rating: Thread Rating: 10 votes, 5.00 average.
Old Sunday 9th March 2014, 18:13   #26
Torview
Registered User
 
Torview's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Dartmoor.
Posts: 2,120
Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
I agree with everything you said. We are as they say on the same page.
So you`re sorry you sold your SE ?
Torview is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 9th March 2014, 22:38   #27
[email protected]
Forum Member

 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,498
Quote:
Originally Posted by Torview View Post
So you`re sorry you sold your SE ?
No. I still feel based even on just optics the SV is better than the SE and it is a way better all around binocular. I do feel if you can snag one for about $500.00 the SE is the best optics you can get for the money still. But I agree with Tobias that the Habicht 8x30 is the very best porro you can buy based on pure optics if you can modify it to work for you. It is kind of a pain to send it back to Swarovski to get the focus loosened and modify the eyecups and put sunshades on it but he is correct in that it would probably be awesome if you did all that stuff. The Habicht 8x30 is better than the SE optically.
denco@comcast.n is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 10th March 2014, 19:56   #28
Tobias Mennle
Registered User

 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: germany
Posts: 210
I feel I can forgive weaknesses in a 700.- glass which I canīt in a 1700.- glass...

and I guess - judging from the many different opinions I read - that the SEs and E2s have more sample variation then the SV.
Tobias Mennle is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 10th March 2014, 20:20   #29
Troubador
Moderator
 
Troubador's Avatar

 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Sheffield
Posts: 8,267
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sancho View Post
There is a secret society of Birdforum members who know how to source a pair at a a great price from a dealer in Hong Kong. Itīs a bit like the Freemasons - you join by application, with the magic question "Can anyone PM me the email address of the guy in HK who can sell EIIīs?"


Lee
Troubador is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 11th March 2014, 00:55   #30
WriterCJ
Registered User
 
WriterCJ's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: West Cork, Ireland
Posts: 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sancho View Post
I think maybe youīll have to come to an Irish atlantic island in lousy weather, with precipitation that varies from mist to drizzle to downpour. Maybe I was being overly nit-picky. In all other conditions the SV were superb.
Ireland does have a habit of throwing up challenging conditions for optics. ;-)
__________________
Calvin Jones
Get closer to the wild side of Ireland.
Visit Ireland's Wildlife
WriterCJ is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 11th March 2014, 03:33   #31
ceasar
Registered User

 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: NE Pennsylvania
Posts: 11,455
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tobias Mennle View Post
I feel I can forgive weaknesses in a 700.- glass which I canīt in a 1700.- glass...

and I guess - judging from the many different opinions I read - that the SEs and E2s have more sample variation then the SV.
There can't be that many samples of SEs and E2s floating around, even considering their many changes of coatings since 1995, if we believe what we read here; so my conclusion has to be that it is the eyes doing the sampling that have most of the variations in them.

Bob
ceasar is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2010 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Tuesday 11th March 2014, 05:51   #32
brocknroller
Registered User
 
brocknroller's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Central PA
Posts: 5,581
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tobias Mennle View Post
After 9 months of using them side by side with a Habicht 8x30W and the SV8x32 I decided to publish my review honoring these fine and now discontinued bins.

http://www.tmfilmpro.com/alleseiten/...kon8x32se.html


In Germany SEs seem discontinued and prices for the 8x32 have gone up considerably.

In my opinion a good copy of the SE will remain a superb almost state of the art glass for years to come, because they are the sharpest, donīt have RG, and a transmission boost of 5% as with the latest Zeiss will not be really visible, as we discern brightness changes in a logarithmic, not in a linear fashion. The SEs are not very much behind the SV, in some fields they are even better, and for a fraction of the price.
Tobias,

Thank you for that excellent fair and balanced review of the 8x32 SE.

I like the foam pad eyecup modification that you made. Perfect for using MOLCET for users who don't have Simian brows. I don't have much of an issue with image blackouts with the SEs, but I have had with other bins, so I can understand how some might not be as willing to make adjustments as you have.

I had more of a challenge in getting the wide diameter eyecups, which were slightly flared, deep enough into my eye sockets to see the full FOV. I bought a new pair of SE eyecups, which solved that problem.

I solved the problem of the SE not laying flat on my chest by adding "sunshades." They also help in cold weather to keep heat waves away from the objectives when my warm hands touch the cold barrels since the thick rubber extensions sit on top of the barrels and extend well beyond them.

I agree with you about the SE's FOV being "a bit narrow," although with the new eyecups I can get my eyes closer to the EPs and see the field stop.

The problem with going wider is shown in the 8x30 EII, which has more distortion (pincushion) across the FOV than the SE. This creates a bit of a "roll" to the image (rolling bowl rather than rolling ball, but the effect is similar). The image in centerfield has the same resolution as the SE (as tested with a resolution chart), and the image quality is very similar, with the EII's colors being slightly "warmer" than the SE's.

If you like the SE view but would like a wider FOV, I suggest you try an 8x30 EII with the latest coatings and improved armor (black body version). It's shape is even stubbier than the SE, so I recommend Bushwacker or Butler objective covers for a better balance. The covers also help somewhat with stray light, which the EII is more prone to than the SE.

For me, the SE"s size and shape are "pros" not "cons." The SE is bigger than the Habicht and wider than roof prisms bins, but I have large hands so that suits me. In fact, with the sunshades (see photo), the SE is nearly as long as the 10x42 SE. More "real estate" is good for me.

With most closed bridge roofs, there's no place on top for my fingers to grip, so they end up overlapping as in prayer ("Lord, please don't let my hands cramp up!") nor can I support the roof from below with my thumbs unless the bin has an open bridge or thumb indents that fall in the right place, which is rarely the case. One exception was the original 8x32 EL, which fit my hands perfectly.

The lack of WPing is not an issue for me either for the same reason, although the lack of internal focus does make the SE focuser hard to turn in cold weather, and we had a very cold winter, so the SE didn't get outside much. The internal focus 7x21 reverse porro Olympus PC III was my cold weather companion this winter.

I'm sure the SV EL is a better choice for winter if you are not bothered by "rolling ball" and can afford the hefty price. The Habicht's focuser is already stiff, so that wouldn't be of greater utility in the winter than the SE.

No bin is perfect for everyone, they all involve a set of compromises. The only real flaw the SE has is spherical aberration of the exit pupil. That can make the SE "unfriendly" for some users.

For me, a reasonable price, smooth focusing, lack of "rolling ball," good ergonomics, good 3-D effect, low CA, and sharp optics with high contrast and good edges are the qualities I desire, and they are all found in the 8x32 SE.

Brock
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Nikon EII and SE 030 CU [].jpg
Views:	142
Size:	174.2 KB
ID:	486973  

Last edited by brocknroller : Tuesday 11th March 2014 at 06:18.
brocknroller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 12:32   #33
horukuru
Here I Come !
 
horukuru's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Near with Mt. Kinabalu, Sabah at Borneo Island
Posts: 6,218
I'm lucky to have both binocular and so far I remembered, I did not experience the flare issue with SV.

And what makes me picking up more of the 8x32 SV than my 8x32 SE because of the relaxed view. No RB with SE and I did see it with the SV but after sometimes (less than a week) my eyes did not bother to see the RB anymore because of the relaxed view of the SV

So that is why it is important to try the binocular b4 buying hehehe
horukuru is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 12:40   #34
[email protected]
Forum Member

 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,498
Quote:
Originally Posted by horukuru View Post
I'm lucky to have both binocular and so far I remembered, I did not experience the flare issue with SV.

And what makes me picking up more of the 8x32 SV than my 8x32 SE because of the relaxed view. No RB with SE and I did see it with the SV but after sometimes (less than a week) my eyes did not bother to see the RB anymore because of the relaxed view of the SV

So that is why it is important to try the binocular b4 buying hehehe
Your right. The SV has such a RELAXED and EASY view. Weird isn't it? But that is how I describe it.
denco@comcast.n is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 12:41   #35
[email protected]
Forum Member

 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,498
Quote:
Originally Posted by Torview View Post
So you`re sorry you sold your SE ?
Since they are discontinuing the Nikon 8x32 SE's I bought a pair before they are all gone. The big web stores like B&H are getting $800 for them now!!!!! I still don't think they are quite as good as the 8x32 SV but for $450.00 shipped they are the best optics you can get for the money. Bar none.

http://www.astromart.com/classifieds...fied_id=848641

Last edited by [email protected] : Wednesday 12th March 2014 at 13:02.
denco@comcast.n is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 12th March 2014, 13:01   #36
horukuru
Here I Come !
 
horukuru's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Near with Mt. Kinabalu, Sabah at Borneo Island
Posts: 6,218
Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Your right. The SV has such a RELAXED and EASY view. Weird isn't it? But that is how I describe it.
Yup for me the relaxed view is very important because I used the SV more than 8 hours during my birdwatching tours.

When I got my 8x32 SE, I compared it with 8x32 HG L. The wide FOV of SE, plus sharpness that makes me used it as the main binocular for my tours. But the HG L wins in smooth fast focus. So both binoculars has their own pros and cons for my eyes.

Then when I got the 8x32 SV, against the 8x32 SE, as I stated in my review based on my usage from the 8th February 2013 in my blog until the time of writing, the main Wow factor I got from the SV is the relaxed view against the 8x32 SE. My blog http://horukuru.blogspot.com/2014/03...binocular.html

So now 8x32 SV is the main bino for my tours and 8x32 SE as a backup
horukuru is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Thursday 13th March 2014, 12:59   #37
[email protected]
Forum Member

 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,498
Quote:
Originally Posted by horukuru View Post
Yup for me the relaxed view is very important because I used the SV more than 8 hours during my birdwatching tours.

When I got my 8x32 SE, I compared it with 8x32 HG L. The wide FOV of SE, plus sharpness that makes me used it as the main binocular for my tours. But the HG L wins in smooth fast focus. So both binoculars has their own pros and cons for my eyes.

Then when I got the 8x32 SV, against the 8x32 SE, as I stated in my review based on my usage from the 8th February 2013 in my blog until the time of writing, the main Wow factor I got from the SV is the relaxed view against the 8x32 SE. My blog http://horukuru.blogspot.com/2014/03...binocular.html

So now 8x32 SV is the main bino for my tours and 8x32 SE as a backup
I really feel after owning a lot of binoculars that the Nikon SE 8x32, Nikon EII 8x30, Swarovski Habicht 8x30 and the Swarovski 8x32 SV are just based on optics the four best binoculars in the world for the birder. I have never looked through a Leupold GR HD 8x32 though. I can't find one!
denco@comcast.n is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 14th March 2014, 20:19   #38
Tobias Mennle
Registered User

 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: germany
Posts: 210
Brock, 100% agreed. And yes, I will have to try the E2s...

Question about your sunshades, on the image is it the objective covers? What kind of sunshades? Have thought about getting some custom made metal ones...
Tobias Mennle is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 15th March 2014, 16:10   #39
brocknroller
Registered User
 
brocknroller's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Central PA
Posts: 5,581
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tobias Mennle View Post
Brock, 100% agreed. And yes, I will have to try the E2s...

Question about your sunshades, on the image is it the objective covers? What kind of sunshades? Have thought about getting some custom made metal ones...
Yes, it's the objective covers. Without them, the stubby barrels would be almost touching the shelf.

The sunshades came with my first sample 8x32 SE (501xxx). The guy I bought it from had the bin for a short time, the receipt from B&H was dated 1998, so these were almost new since that was the year Nikon cites as the release year although Henry bought his 500xxx a year earlier.

The seller said the sunshades came from a pair of old Carton Adlerblick binoculars. They fit my barrels and my hands perfectly. You could make a pair yourself from rubber hose. I've made a couple pairs of sunshades, one pair from soup cans and the other from Pringle potato chip containers. If you don't use black rubber, be sure to paint the inside of the tubes flat black to prevent reflections.

I have Bushwacker covers on the EII. If you look at the photo I posted, you can see them on the EII on the extreme right side of the photo.

Brock
brocknroller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 15th March 2014, 18:56   #40
Tobias Mennle
Registered User

 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: germany
Posts: 210
Thanks, Brock. So it will be custom made ones. Aluminum and black velvet...
Tobias Mennle is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 30th March 2014, 20:33   #41
Brunoc
Registered User

 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Devizes
Posts: 14
What vintage are SE 8x32 502xxxx?

I've just bought a mint pair which seem great although I like the extra boost from the 10x35 EII when looking out a long way.
Brunoc is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Saturday 5th April 2014, 05:40   #42
brocknroller
Registered User
 
brocknroller's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Central PA
Posts: 5,581
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brunoc View Post
What vintage are SE 8x32 502xxxx?

I've just bought a mint pair which seem great although I like the extra boost from the 10x35 EII when looking out a long way.
The 502 is an early sample from about 1999- 2000. It's the "Millennial edition."

Brock
brocknroller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 7th April 2014, 21:23   #43
Brunoc
Registered User

 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Devizes
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by brocknroller View Post
The 502 is an early sample from about 1999- 2000. It's the "Millennial edition."

Brock
Thanks. I'll look out for some 550s but I won't lose any sleep in the meantime!
Brunoc is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 4th June 2014, 01:41   #44
jaymoynihan
Corvus brachyrhynchos watcher
 
jaymoynihan's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Lake Michigan Watershed
Posts: 989
Good review.
I recently had to get a new eyeglass prescription, which resulted in excessive ER/eye placement problems with my 8x SE. I folded the upper part of the eyecup down until it almost touches the edge of the eye lense. Worked like a charm, and similar to your solution. So far, my fold stays in place.
__________________
"If there is a heaven, and i am allowed entrance, I will ask for no more than an endless living world to walk through and explore. I will carry with me an inexhaustible supply of notebooks from which i can send back reports to the more sedentary spirits." E.O. Wilson
jaymoynihan is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 9th June 2014, 22:21   #45
David Swain
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Boston area
Posts: 537
My situation is the same, and a set of very thin O-rings folded under the eyecup keep them fixed. I don't recall the dimensions of the rings, but a quick search here will pull up the O-ring thread. Once I sorted out the ER, my SEs get as much use as my EIIs. They are finicky, but the view is worth the effort.

David
__________________
"For the love of the Great Flying Spaghetti Monster, they're only binoculars, and if they didn't exist, we'd just have to stand closer to stuff!" --Sancho

Nikon 8x32SE, 8x30E II
David Swain is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 9th June 2014, 23:06   #46
brocknroller
Registered User
 
brocknroller's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Central PA
Posts: 5,581
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tobias Mennle View Post
I feel I can forgive weaknesses in a 700.- glass which I canīt in a 1700.- glass...

and I guess - judging from the many different opinions I read - that the SEs and E2s have more sample variation then the SV.
I doubt if that's true of the SEs. The SV EL's focusers alone would vary more. I've owned seven SEs - 3-12x50s, 1-10x42, and 3-8x32s). I also tried another 12x50 SE and a 10x42 SE for a month each. I tried two other 10x42 SEs more briefly.

The only difference I found was a closer close focus in one 12x50 SE (16 ft, like the 10x42, rather than 24 ft. as per spec) and better contrast on newer models with more advanced coatings, but that's to be expected.

OTOH, I have found sample variation with the EII in terms of how much field curvature they have. Some have a moderate amount, some very little. Not sure why this is, but it's based on 3-8x30s and 3-10x35s. With the eights, comparing three samples side by side, not from memory. Even the one with the most field curvature was still a great birding bin.

Brock

Last edited by brocknroller : Monday 9th June 2014 at 23:40. Reason: got to learn how to count
brocknroller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 11th June 2014, 20:38   #47
chartwell99
Registered User

 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: houston, texas, usa
Posts: 621
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tobias Mennle View Post
In my opinion a good copy of the SE will remain a superb almost state of the art glass for years to come, because they are the sharpest, donīt have RG, and a transmission boost of 5% as with the latest Zeiss will not be really visible, as we discern brightness changes in a logarithmic, not in a linear fashion. The SEs are not very much behind the SV, in some fields they are even better, and for a fraction of the price.
Great review of a very interesting and quirky binocular. Since the world of quality birding porros is shrinking, I would suggest consideration of the Opticron 8 x 32 SR.GA. as well. No, it's not a Nikon SE or Habicht, but it's a wonderful binocular in its own right, with optical performance far better than it's modest price would suggest and a convincing reminder of the time-tested virtues of the 8x30 porro configuration.
chartwell99 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 11th June 2014, 22:40   #48
brocknroller
Registered User
 
brocknroller's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Central PA
Posts: 5,581
Quote:
Originally Posted by chartwell99 View Post
Great review of a very interesting and quirky binocular. Since the world of quality birding porros is shrinking, I would suggest consideration of the Opticron 8 x 32 SR.GA. as well. No, it's not a Nikon SE or Habicht, but it's a wonderful binocular in its own right, with optical performance far better than it's modest price would suggest and a convincing reminder of the time-tested virtues of the 8x30 porro configuration.
And how much more it costs the buyer to get the same level of performance out of a roof.

The gap is closing, however. Tried the 8x30 Monarch 7, and given the price, it's a "good bang for the buck." I don't often say that about roofs.

Brock
brocknroller is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 11th June 2014, 22:47   #49
Torview
Registered User
 
Torview's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Dartmoor.
Posts: 2,120
Brock have you tried the 8x42 Monarch 7 ? I would be interested in your opinion.
Torview is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Thursday 12th June 2014, 04:27   #50
brocknroller
Registered User
 
brocknroller's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Central PA
Posts: 5,581
Quote:
Originally Posted by Torview View Post
Brock have you tried the 8x42 Monarch 7 ? I would be interested in your opinion.
No, only the 8x30 model. Several BF members tried both and thought the 8x30 was the better of the two.

But don't worry, I compared the 8x32 SE to the 8x30 M7, and the SE is better. You'd have to go a $1,000 over the price of an SE to get as good quality in a roof. But for $300, the 8x30 M7 is better than the Vortex 8x42 Fury, which was the "best buy" in its day.

Brock

Last edited by brocknroller : Thursday 12th June 2014 at 04:33.
brocknroller 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
My review of EL 8x32 WB Swarovision and more oetzi Swarovski 99 Thursday 17th April 2014 07:21
review: Swarovski Habicht 8x30 from 1961 - incredible Tobias Mennle Swarovski 5 Friday 5th April 2013 10:23
Review Swarovski Swarovision EL 8x32 WB binomania Swarovski 115 Saturday 28th July 2012 21:11
Habicht 8x30 W, Nikon 8x32 SE, Nikon 8x32 Eii, Nikon 8x32 HG (XL for US i guess) Giorgio Binoculars 48 Friday 27th April 2012 13:35

{googleads}

Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.23772693 seconds with 36 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 18:12.