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.

Economical 8x25

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old Monday 9th September 2019, 18:13   #1
Upland
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Bozeman, MT
Posts: 364
Economical 8x25

Im looking for a lower priced 8x25. Main contenders now are the Kowa BD 8x25 and Zeiss Terra 8x25. Have heard good things about both but am leaning towards the Kowas because of the single hinge design. Would welcome any feedback on these two and any other suggestions in this price range only. Not in my budget to go up. Only interested in the 25 mm range. All set at the 32 mm level. Please dont recommend any of those or more expensive models. Thanks.
Upland is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 9th September 2019, 19:17   #2
james holdsworth
Consulting Biologist
 
james holdsworth's Avatar

 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: ontario
Posts: 3,297
I would not recommend the Terra. I like mine optically, but the double hinge design is crap, and both hinges are too loose. Many have had this problem and I suspect it is a inherent flaw in the design.
__________________
''serenity now....insanity later.'' - Lloyd Brawn
james holdsworth is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 9th September 2019, 19:45   #3
Gijs van Ginkel
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: utrecht
Posts: 1,698
Upland, post 1,
Only a few months ago I have investigated a number of 8x25 binoculars and compared them with those made By Zeiss and Swarovski (both over 700 euros).
- The Bynolyt Voyager 8x26 WP costs 109 euros but has around 65% light transmission and a smaller FOV.
- A real competition with the Zeiss and Swarovski binoculars is the Bynolyt Seagull ED 8x25 HD, costs 300 euros, very convenient user comfort, very good optcal performance at around 93% light transmission almost equal to the Swarovski and Zeiss models.
A test report can be found (in Dutch, but tables and graphs are easy to read) on the WEB-site of House of Outdoor (with photographs of the binoculars).
Gijs van Ginkel
Gijs van Ginkel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 9th September 2019, 19:56   #4
[email protected]
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Colorado
Posts: 2,135
The Vortex Diamondback 8x28's are a pretty nice little binocular for $139.00. Good warranty.
https://www.amazon.com/Vortex-Optics...gateway&sr=8-4
denco@comcast.n is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 9th September 2019, 20:08   #5
Gijs van Ginkel
Registered User

 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: utrecht
Posts: 1,698
Minox has also different types of 8x25 binoculars at a fairly low price, but I do not know abouth their performances. I have shortly investigated one a bit and compared it with the the Bynolyt Seagull ED, but the Bynolyt is clearly better.
Gijs van Ginkel
Gijs van Ginkel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 9th September 2019, 20:42   #6
Mark9473
Registered User

 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: 51N 4E
Posts: 243
I bought two of the Kowa BD 8x25 for my kids recently.
They impress me with a good build quality (feels like a solid metal housing), crisp optics, just the right size to handle nicely (not too small, compared to my Leica 8x20 dual hinge). I like the pouch too.
The only thing that jumped out at me is that they have a very fast focuser - takes less than a full turn from one end to the other. Haven't used them enough to know if this is something I could easily get used to.

Last edited by Mark9473 : Monday 9th September 2019 at 21:14.
Mark9473 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 01:38   #7
fazalmajid
Registered User
 
fazalmajid's Avatar

 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 337
I'd look also at the Meopta Meosport 8x25 and I believe Opticron has some good models as well.
fazalmajid is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 02:11   #8
mwhogue
Registered User
BF Supporter 2019

 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Friendswood
Posts: 115
Upland and All,

I like 8x25 including economical, mid range and alpha models, currently own and have tested @ 8 different marques in @ 12 different versions.
IF you get a good Terra and the hinges are not loose and do not become loose over time, it is very good especially for a double hinge but as James says there are many complaints in this regard.
The Vortex 8x28 (Dennis' suggestion) is nice but also note there are two models available, the Classic with a wider FOV and the new version with a reduced FOV but reportedly better optical performance in other areas. I have tested only the new model, again very nice single hinge design and very nicely accessorized in the box with case, rain guard and objective covers.
I agree with GVG, while Minox have truly outstanding construction for the price the optical performance lags a little behind the Terra and the Vortex. I would trust GVG's statement that the Bynolyt Seagull is excellent/better optically but haven't tried it myself.
Likewise, I have no experience with the Kowa 8x25 but the Kowa 8.5 and 10.5x44 Genesis are both excellent on the top end as is the YF 8x30 porro on the economical end so I presume the 8x25 would be a good value for the money as well.

Hope this helps.

Mike
mwhogue is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2019 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 11:50   #9
MandoBear
Registered User
 
MandoBear's Avatar

 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Hereford UK
Posts: 124
I have the Kowa BD 8x25, and it's very nicely made (in Japan) and easy to look through. The specification is good - phase and dielectric coated prisms - and it should be a really nice binocular... but I struggle a bit with mine, in that I find it hard to get a critically sharp image. The focusing knob is very smooth, but it's also very fast, and I seem to spend more time overshooting the point of best focus, which is frustrating. I also think that they're just not super, super sharp. The Binolyt Seagull ED is a very nice bino - I've tried a pair, and they're certainly sharper than my Kowa 8x25s, but I couldn't get on with the design of the eyepieces - they didn't play so nice with my glasses - so I had to send them back. The Kowas seemed better made overall.

One 8x25 that has been a bit of a revelation to me is the Pentax UP 8x25 WP - a reverse-porro design that's waterproof, a little chunky, but reasonably light and quite rugged-feeling. Sharp as you like in the centre of the field of view, decent stray light control, and available for remarkably little money. These, and the Pentax Papilios have made me realise that the reverse-porro is a rather underrated design - and they've made me hanker after an alpha-style, compact, reverse-porro. That could be a real gem...
MandoBear is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 13:54   #10
chill6x6
Registered User
BF Supporter 2019
 
chill6x6's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Alabama
Posts: 1,472
So far I have nothing but good to say about the Zeiss Terra ED 8X25. It's been surprising good optically. I've used them a good bit. If course they aren't my first choice but WAY better than I expected.

My first step to a more compact binocular was the now discontinued Vortex Viper 8X28. Problem with it is the hinges don't fold SO it's really not much more compact than the Monarch 7 8X30. So I took a stab at the Terra ED basically based on some reviews I read. I also wanted a binocular that was somewhat expendable. I take this binocular to the beach, around water, on vacation, out to eat, etc. It's made in Japan. Hinges are stiff with some friction which I like. Plenty of ER. Focus is a little stiff but hasn't been an issue. I realize this isn't a Swarovski Pocket.

Very pleased with this purchase!

BTW...first pic from left to right...is all binoculars at useable IPD...next pic is collapsed as possible...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	fullsizeoutput_10fd.jpeg
Views:	57
Size:	79.6 KB
ID:	704491  Click image for larger version

Name:	fullsizeoutput_1104.jpeg
Views:	51
Size:	71.3 KB
ID:	704492  Click image for larger version

Name:	fullsizeoutput_8eb.jpeg
Views:	45
Size:	76.4 KB
ID:	704493  
__________________
Chuck
chill6x6 is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2017 2018 2019 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 14:01   #11
gunut
Registered Offender
 
gunut's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Sussex Wisconsin
Posts: 468
I like the Zeiss Terra ….just make sure the hinges are snug.....optics are much better than their price would suggest.......
gunut is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 14:43   #12
Upland
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Bozeman, MT
Posts: 364
Thanks for the suggestions. I’ve checked out the diamondbacks in the past and the eyecups were too short. Did a direct comparison to the Vipers and they were quite a bit shorter. All the larger size Vipers I’ve tried in the past have had annoying barrel reflections but I think the design on the compacts is different. Have ruled out the Terras because of the double hinges. I checked a pair out and don’t care for the design. Also considering a Maven 7x28 that only costs $200. Has anyone tried them?
Upland is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 14:53   #13
Upland
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Bozeman, MT
Posts: 364
Have also noticed that the Kowas have Schmidt Pechan SK15 prisms and are made in Japan which are both appealing to me.
Upland is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 19:51   #14
Upland
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Bozeman, MT
Posts: 364
Looking at the specs of the MeoSport it shows 14 oz. A little heavy for what I’m looking for
Upland is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th September 2019, 22:00   #15
mwhogue
Registered User
BF Supporter 2019

 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Friendswood
Posts: 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by Upland View Post
Thanks for the suggestions. Ive checked out the diamondbacks in the past and the eyecups were too short. Did a direct comparison to the Vipers and they were quite a bit shorter. All the larger size Vipers Ive tried in the past have had annoying barrel reflections but I think the design on the compacts is different. Have ruled out the Terras because of the double hinges. I checked a pair out and dont care for the design. Also considering a Maven 7x28 that only costs $200. Has anyone tried them?
Yes. The Maven 7x28 is another nice compact bin for the price. Good single hinge and of course 4 mm EP in a compact. However The AFOV is not the best. Also on my sample at least, the focus wheel function is uneven and has some annoying stickiness which makes precise focusing a bit tricky but once you get it adjusted the view is really bright sharp and pleasing. Also on mine the eyecups are a bit rickety but this doesn't matter much to me as I normally use without my prescription glasses but with eyecups fully twisted down. Good ER with close fitting sunglasses.


Mike
mwhogue is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2019 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Wednesday 11th September 2019, 15:29   #16
Upland
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Bozeman, MT
Posts: 364
Quote:
Originally Posted by mwhogue View Post
Yes. The Maven 7x28 is another nice compact bin for the price. Good single hinge and of course 4 mm EP in a compact. However The AFOV is not the best. Also on my sample at least, the focus wheel function is uneven and has some annoying stickiness which makes precise focusing a bit tricky but once you get it adjusted the view is really bright sharp and pleasing. Also on mine the eyecups are a bit rickety but this doesn't matter much to me as I normally use without my prescription glasses but with eyecups fully twisted down. Good ER with close fitting sunglasses.


Mike
Thanks for the feedback. Going to give those a miss as build quality sounds questionable. Leaning towards the Kowas as they are made in Japan per Kowa and get good reviews.
Upland is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 11th September 2019, 16:49   #17
edwincjones
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: NW Arkansas
Posts: 1,183
After having my 8x25 Terra for a year, I am discovering that the concept of having a compact is more positive than the reality of having one.
The terra performs, the hard case protects, but both are awkward to use and less pleasing than larger optics.
Buying seemed like a good idea at the time but just did not satisfy .
My 8x25 s are now thrown into the suitcase to be used for a backup for trips or outings in case my favored binoculars are impaired or lost.

edj
__________________
"I see skies of blue and clouds of white,
the bright blessed day, the dark sacred night,
and I think to myself what a wonderful world"
-L Armstrong, IZ, and others

Last edited by edwincjones : Wednesday 11th September 2019 at 16:52.
edwincjones is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 11th September 2019, 17:25   #18
wdc
Registered User
 
wdc's Avatar

 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Moraga, California
Posts: 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwincjones View Post
After having my 8x25 Terra for a year, I am discovering that the concept of having a compact is more positive than the reality of having one.
The terra performs, the hard case protects, but both are awkward to use and less pleasing than larger optics.
Buying seemed like a good idea at the time but just did not satisfy .
My 8x25 s are now thrown into the suitcase to be used for a backup for trips or outings in case my favored binoculars are impaired or lost.

edj
I can see how you would reach those conclusions. I agree that the smaller bins are more fiddly to get the view dialed in. Observing with glasses, I don't get subtle tactile feedback about exactly where the eyepieces are relative to my eyes, in a critical fine tuning sense. However, once I'm committed to using them, I get faster at lining up the view. With the Victory pockets, I also find that I periodically move the diopter one click off when pulling them out of my shirt pocket, so if I find myself refocussing a lot, I make sure to check the diopter.

As a full-time binocular there may be better choices for most users than an 8x25.

That said, they work great in museums, where one can peruse close up details of brushwork on paintings without alarming security guards. They've also been on several 6 day packtrips for the long hikes with a pack on. I've found enough circumstances in my own life where they do a great job, in large part because of their size and weight.

In most situations, I'll generally default to a larger bin for the reasons you stated, no question.

-Bill
wdc is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Thursday 12th September 2019, 02:58   #19
chill6x6
Registered User
BF Supporter 2019
 
chill6x6's Avatar

 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Alabama
Posts: 1,472
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwincjones View Post
After having my 8x25 Terra for a year, I am discovering that the concept of having a compact is more positive than the reality of having one.
The terra performs, the hard case protects, but both are awkward to use and less pleasing than larger optics.
Buying seemed like a good idea at the time but just did not satisfy .
My 8x25 s are now thrown into the suitcase to be used for a backup for trips or outings in case my favored binoculars are impaired or lost.


edj
I tend to agree with this for the most part. If one needs a binocular, get a BINOCULAR. That truly IS the best choice. My binocular choice HAS trickled downwards as far as size goes though. First it was 42mm, then smaller 42mm, then 32mm, and so on. I did finally get to where I wanted A binocular but a full-sized one just wouldn't have been feasible. My first step was the Vortex Viper 8X28. That one was FINE, it's just that it wasn't really THAT much smaller than the Monarch 7 8X30. In fact I USED the M7 8X30(and CL 8X30) for a while in this capacity. But still I wanted a binocular that was less conspicuous, maybe one that would fit in a shirt pocket, and be somewhat dispensable. So I set a budget of $300.00. I settled on a double hinged design for compactness. The Terra ED 8X25 SEEMED to be the most well-regarded so that's the way I went. To date it has surpassed all expectations.
__________________
Chuck
chill6x6 is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2017 2018 2019 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Thursday 12th September 2019, 14:06   #20
temmie
Registered User
 
temmie's Avatar

 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Belgium
Posts: 1,289
Like Edwin said, I find that a bad 8x25 takes away the potential pleasure of watching through the thing.
That potential pleasure is always somewhere betwen 0-100% of the pleasure watching through a full size binocular.

So you want to have the advantage of something small and light, And I guess you don't want to give up viewing comfort? If that is the case, buy a really good 8x25, because if you buy a bad 8x25, you have something lightweight around your neck that you don't like to use. That's not what you are aiming for I guess.

So if this means you have to get a Swarovski or Zeiss victory, get it. If you really don't like them, you sell them for a minor price reduction compared to a new one and so you will only lose max. 100 dollar/euro on your initial price paid. If you buy one of 300 dollar and it's bad, how much you think it will sell after a year? I reckon you will loose as much or even more if you try to sell a mediocre binocular.
temmie is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2009 2010 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 13th September 2019, 10:02   #21
edwincjones
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: NW Arkansas
Posts: 1,183
Quote:
Originally Posted by temmie View Post
Like Edwin said, I find that a bad 8x25 takes away the potential pleasure of watching through the thing.
That potential pleasure is always somewhere betwen 0-100% of the pleasure watching through a full size binocular.

So you want to have the advantage of something small and light, And I guess you don't want to give up viewing comfort? If that is the case, buy a really good 8x25, because if you buy a bad 8x25, you have something lightweight around your neck that you don't like to use. That's not what you are aiming for I guess.

So if this means you have to get a Swarovski or Zeiss victory, get it. If you really don't like them, you sell them for a minor price reduction compared to a new one and so you will only lose max. 100 dollar/euro on your initial price paid. If you buy one of 300 dollar and it's bad, how much you think it will sell after a year? I reckon you will loose as much or even more if you try to sell a mediocre binocular.
You may be right that I would have been happier with the SW or Zeiss victory,
but I do not consider the Terra "bad" or "mediocre" but just awkward.

edj
__________________
"I see skies of blue and clouds of white,
the bright blessed day, the dark sacred night,
and I think to myself what a wonderful world"
-L Armstrong, IZ, and others
edwincjones is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 13th September 2019, 10:06   #22
temmie
Registered User
 
temmie's Avatar

 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Belgium
Posts: 1,289
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwincjones View Post
You may be right that I would have been happier with the SW or Zeiss victory,
but I do not consider the Terra "bad" or "mediocre" but just awkward.

edj
Hi Edwin,

I was careful not to state that, by default, the Swaro or Zeiss Victory are best for everyone.

I was more making a case for the no-compromise binocular in terms of not letting price be a factor in making a choice. My main argument for that is resale value and depreciation.
temmie is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2009 2010 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 13th September 2019, 10:42   #23
edwincjones
Registered User

 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: NW Arkansas
Posts: 1,183
Quote:
Originally Posted by temmie View Post
Hi Edwin,

......... My main argument for that is resale value and depreciation.
And that seems even more important with compacts
as the compromise between size and convenience
is greater with the little ones with sometimes strong
differences of opinion of users.



edj
__________________
"I see skies of blue and clouds of white,
the bright blessed day, the dark sacred night,
and I think to myself what a wonderful world"
-L Armstrong, IZ, and others
edwincjones is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 17th September 2019, 23:21   #24
NDhunter
Registered User
 
NDhunter's Avatar

 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: ND
Posts: 4,112
I agree with many of the above comments about the Zeiss Terra ED. It performs very well, better than many smaller
8x20's, so just go ahead with confidence.

Just buy it and get your search over. Best overall value in this size. I have tried the Swaro. 8x25,
and did not find any advantage over the Terra.

Jerry
NDhunter is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 18th September 2019, 02:33   #25
mwhogue
Registered User
BF Supporter 2019

 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Friendswood
Posts: 115
Jerry,

Agreed the Terra 8x25 hits a real sweet spot in the price for performance ratio assuming the hinge tension remains good and I have not had any problems with that. I like the Terra handling better than any other dual hinge compact including the Swarovski. For me the Terra handles better, more like a nice mid size while the Swarovski handles more like a nice compact and the Terra eyecups are more comfortable. I do think the SW is better optically, but it's also @ $500 more expensive of course.

Mike
mwhogue is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2019 Support BirdForum With A Donation

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
Economical spotting are OK for visual? wachipilotes Spotting Scopes & tripod/heads 8 Monday 17th December 2018 21:48
Zeiss Terra ED 8x25 vs. Swarovski CL Pocket Mountain 8x25 vs. Zeiss Victory 8x25 Common Raven Binoculars 27 Saturday 14th April 2018 21:26
Bushnell 7x26 v. Swarovski 8x25 v. Zeiss Terra 8x25 v. Vortex Viper 8x28 b-lilja Binoculars 22 Monday 26th December 2016 23:49
economical spotting scope stevegra Nikon 7 Tuesday 26th April 2011 08:57
New 8x25 Canon IS 8x25 Binoculars have HARD focus! [email protected] Canon 5 Thursday 15th February 2007 04:04

{googleads}

Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.17644000 seconds with 38 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 04:37.