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Swarovski CL companion 8x30 question about light gathering and eye relief

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Old Sunday 19th January 2020, 17:29   #1
Passerine Dream
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Swarovski CL companion 8x30 question about light gathering and eye relief

Looking to buy my forever pair of binoculars. I'm primarily will be using these in forested semi open areas. I'm wonder with them being only 8x30 instead of a more traditional 8x42 will they be bright enough to be my everyday binoculars? Or just spend the extra $$$ and go for an SLC 8x42? I'm also wondering if any eyeglass wearers have experienced any blackouts or kidney beaning? I'd like to pair these with a kowa 663m and 30x wide eyepiece. I'm looking to buy these and use them for the next 20years or so.


Thanks for the help
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Old Sunday 19th January 2020, 18:05   #2
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If you are just going to have only one binocular I would definitely go with an 8x42. A good 8x42 is hard to beat as an all around birding binocular because it will perform under all lighting conditions better than the 8x30. An 8x42 will bring in more than 70% more light than an 8x30 and a Swarovski SLC 8x42 is a good choice at $1549.00 but make sure the focuser is smooth without slack. I have experienced quite a few with sticky focusers. For another $200.00 you can get a Nikon EDG 8x42 or Zeiss FL 8x42 on Ebay which are a notch up IMO from the SLC. The EDG has a WAY better focuser than the SLC. Another one to consider is the MIJ Vortex Razor UHD 8x42 which you can find for about $1300.00 to $1400.00. In the latest Audubon Review they scored above the Zeiss SF and Leica Noctivid and almost tied the Swarovski SV 8.5x42.

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Old Sunday 19th January 2020, 18:06   #3
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The 8x42 SLC has more usable eye-relief than the 8x30 and is bigger and therefore easier to handle, especially with gloves. I would think the SLC is the more allround glass and would serve you better as a single pair.

George
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Old Sunday 19th January 2020, 18:29   #4
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Yes I will be wearing gloves as I'm living in Canada and do allot of winter birding in quite cold conditions. The SLC looks great. I'm not looking to buy anything from China. I'm pretty set on the SLC for the most part. I just need to find an affordable quality scope to compliment the SLC's. Like I said these will be my forever binoculars so I'd like to do it right but most of the alphas are way out of my budget.

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Old Sunday 19th January 2020, 21:56   #5
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I find that the 8x30 CL Companion offers more than enough eye relief to ensure a full field of view - I wear glasses.
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Old Sunday 19th January 2020, 23:28   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Passerine Dream View Post
Looking to buy my forever pair of binoculars. I'm primarily will be using these in forested semi open areas. I'm wonder with them being only 8x30 instead of a more traditional 8x42 will they be bright enough to be my everyday binoculars? Or just spend the extra $$$ and go for an SLC 8x42? I'm also wondering if any eyeglass wearers have experienced any blackouts or kidney beaning? I'd like to pair these with a kowa 663m and 30x wide eyepiece. I'm looking to buy these and use them for the next 20years or so.


Thanks for the help
Will an 8X30 be bright enough for an every day binocular?

ABSOLUTELY! It's rare for me to find an 8X30 lacking for almost any birding situation.

I've also had no problem with ER or any other similar issues with either of the latest 8X30 CL models and I wear glasses as well.

I've only owned the new CL B about a month so I haven't used it really enough to give it a glowing recommendation. The central diopter adjustment is a little fiddly. I'm also reserving my opinion about the focus adjustment until later after more use. The optics however are excellent.

If I were to pick a "forever" binocular I'd too believe I'd pick the SLC 8X42 between it and the CL B 8X30. Really the only benefits the CL B has are size/weight and cost. I feel the SLC will be more user friendly, especially for an eyeglass wearer with the larger exit pupil. The SLC 8X42 is DEFINITELY a forever binocular and one you are not likely to get tired of. It will be hard to beat at any price.
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 03:19   #7
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Since you are looking for an excellent 8x30 binocular for birding I would be remiss if I did not recommend the Legendary Nikon 8x30 EII Porro Prism. It was introduced in 1999. I used one for 4 or 5 years between 2001 and 2006. It is still being sold by Nikon in Japan and it is well worth seeking out. Nikon designated it as their 100th Anniversary Binocular. There also is a 10x35 version.

They are not waterproof.

You can read Allbinos review of the Nikon 8x30 EII here:

https://www.allbinos.com/168.1-artic..._8x30_EII.html

Bob

Last edited by ceasar : Monday 20th January 2020 at 03:24.
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 11:23   #8
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The Nikon EII is indeed a genuinely lovely binocular, and I cherish mine. The wide-angle, classic porro view is really immersive and involving. I guess the only other concern (other than the lack of waterproofing) is the eye-relief, which although sufficient for me with relatively close-fitting glasses, is not over-generous, and might not be enough for some.
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 12:29   #9
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Since you are looking for an excellent 8x30 binocular for birding I would be remiss if I did not recommend the Legendary Nikon 8x30 EII Porro Prism. It was introduced in 1999. I used one for 4 or 5 years between 2001 and 2006. It is still being sold by Nikon in Japan and it is well worth seeking out. Nikon designated it as their 100th Anniversary Binocular. There also is a 10x35 version.

They are not waterproof.

You can read Allbinos review of the Nikon 8x30 EII here:

https://www.allbinos.com/168.1-artic..._8x30_EII.html

Bob
Thanks for the info but unfortunately the widely available 100th anniversary updated edition I believe are infact made in china along witht he HG line. Im not sure if any of Nikons current binoculars are made in Japan any longer. Can someone verify this? Im strictly against CHINBINS. Even if they are good. I dont want to invest in chinese bins. Unfortunately the Monarch scope which has raving reviews are made in china, how dissapointing....

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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 12:57   #10
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Thanks for the info but unfortunately the widely available 100th anniversary updated edition I believe are infact made in china along witht he HG line. Im not sure if any of Nikons current binoculars are made in Japan any longer. Can someone verify this. Im strictly against CHINBINS. Even if they are good. I dont want to invest in chinese bins. Unfortunately the Monarch scope which has raving reviews are made in china, how dissapointing....
Sorry guys Im just rereading my post I hope Im not coming off as arrogant as allot of chinese made bins have great glass but it's the Quality Control im worried about. My first pair of Binoculars where Nikon Prostaff 7s and for the price they are great. I then moved to Zeiss Conquest and they where even better. But I do notice with the Nikons that sometimes some things just slip through the cracks. So im hoping to just stick with European or Japanese made bins. Although it's strongly looking like Swarovski at this point. Anyways I hope Im not offending anybody with my CHINBINS comment.

Regards
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 14:16   #11
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Originally Posted by Passerine Dream View Post
Thanks for the info but unfortunately the widely available 100th anniversary updated edition I believe are infact made in china along witht he HG line. Im not sure if any of Nikons current binoculars are made in Japan any longer. Can someone verify this? Im strictly against CHINBINS. Even if they are good. I dont want to invest in chinese bins. Unfortunately the Monarch scope which has raving reviews are made in china, how dissapointing....
The E2s are all made in Japan.

If not by Nikon then by other original Japanese Binocular manufacturers for Nikon. I have 3 of them I purchased at different times (along with a 10x35) between the year 2000 and the one for the Centennial Year. They are clearly all made from the same dies. Their parts would probably be interchangeable.

The 10x35 E2 I purchased as a "Reconditioned Product" in August 2005 from Hi-Point Scientific in Montague, New Jersey for $229.00. It only had a 90 day warranty. It is still working perfectly.

I also have an 8x42 Monarch HG and I give no credence to any rumor that they are made in China. In fact mine says right on it that it is made in Japan! Nikon has plenty of connections with Japanese OEMs who they can contract their top of the line work out to.

That said, Nikon does contract many of their less expensive binoculars out to Chinese manufacturers. I have a Monarch 7 8x30 that says it is made in China on it. It is a good little binocular too!

Bob

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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 14:43   #12
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The E2s are all made in Japan.

If not by Nikon then by other original Japanese Binocular manufacturers for Nikon. I have 3 of them I purchased at different times (along with a 10x35) between the year 2000 and the one for the Centennial Year. They are clearly all made from the same dies. Their parts would probably be interchangeable.

The 10x35 E2 I purchased as a "Reconditioned Product" in August 2005 from Hi-Point Scientific in Montague, New Jersey for $229.00. It only had a 90 day warranty. It is still working perfectly.

I also have an 8x42 Monarch HG and I give no credence to any rumor that they are made in China. In fact mine says right on it that it is made in Japan! Nikon has plenty of connections with Japanese OEMs who they can contract their top of the line work out to.

That said, Nikon does contract many of their less expensive binoculars out to Chinese manufacturers. I have a Monarch 7 8x30 that says it is made in China on it. It is a good little binocular too!

Bob
OMG game changer! I Originally was looking at the HG 8x42 and the Monarch 82mm ED scope but dismissed the combo because I had erroneously read on the interwebs that they where manufactured in china! If the Monarch HG bins and the Monarch fieldscope are made in Japan according to reports of performance and the prices im seeing they definitely cant be beat. Am I right? I mean in their price category can anybody name a better binocular? Wow and they are mad in Japan, LOL im such a dork ive been reading the net for Days looking at different models etc. I might have to go back and take a look at the Monarch line. Now that they check all the boxes price and performance cant be beat.....
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 15:09   #13
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The Nikon EII is indeed a genuinely lovely binocular, and I cherish mine. The wide-angle, classic porro view is really immersive and involving. I guess the only other concern (other than the lack of waterproofing) is the eye-relief, which although sufficient for me with relatively close-fitting glasses, is not over-generous, and might not be enough for some.
I'm curious if anyone has experience using the EIIs in colder weather? For instance, it was -20C here this morning. I've read that on some porros the focuser can become stiff and difficult to turn in colder conditions. I also wonder if the lack of waterproofing would also mean problems with condensation / fogging / frosting when taken outside from a warm house. Would either of these be a concern with the EIIs?

My wife has the companion 8x30s and is quite happy with them. She wears eye glasses. I've borrowed them a few times and thought them nice enough to plan to buy my own. It seems like I might be developing neck and shoulder problems, so the lighter weight is definitely something for which I'm looking in a binocular.
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 15:38   #14
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I'm curious if anyone has experience using the EIIs in colder weather? For instance, it was -20C here this morning. I've read that on some porros the focuser can become stiff and difficult to turn in colder conditions. I also wonder if the lack of waterproofing would also mean problems with condensation / fogging / frosting when taken outside from a warm house. Would either of these be a concern with the EIIs?
In that kind of temperatures I'd always go for a roof. Stiff focusers aren't very nice at all.

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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 15:57   #15
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OMG game changer! I Originally was looking at the HG 8x42 and the Monarch 82mm ED scope but dismissed the combo because I had erroneously read on the interwebs that they where manufactured in china! If the Monarch HG bins and the Monarch fieldscope are made in Japan according to reports of performance and the prices im seeing they definitely cant be beat. Am I right? I mean in their price category can anybody name a better binocular? Wow and they are mad in Japan, LOL im such a dork ive been reading the net for Days looking at different models etc. I might have to go back and take a look at the Monarch line. Now that they check all the boxes price and performance cant be beat.....
The Monarch 82mm ED scope is made in China according to the label on the scope. The one I reviewed was also one of the very best spotting scopes I've seen regardless of price or country of origin.
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 18:40   #16
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I just thought of something. I use a bino harness, because im usually out for hours on end and I find it helps quite a bit.

Question, with the Companion CL's and their neck strap and harness connection how do you connect a regular no name harness that doesn't use circle connections but just relies on on a strap going through some kind of loop? Are you forced to buy and use the Swarovski harness if you decide to use one alongside the CL companions?
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 18:55   #17
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I just thought of something. I use a bino harness, because im usually out for hours on end and I find it helps quite a bit.

Question, with the Companion CL's and their neck strap and harness connection how do you connect a regular no name harness that doesn't use circle connections but just relies on on a strap going through some kind of loop? Are you forced to buy and use the Swarovski harness if you decide to use one alongside the CL companions?
There are (free of charge) loop connectors available. So no worries.

Jan
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 19:43   #18
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There are (free of charge) loop connectors available. So no worries.

Jan
Ok so you just send an email to Swarovski and they send you a pair free of charge?
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 20:23   #19
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Ok so you just send an email to Swarovski and they send you a pair free of charge?
I don't know how it goes in your country, but we have them as (free) spare parts from the bino guard Pro and suspender Pro.
Get these from your dealer, make them 1mm less thick and you are ready to go.

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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 20:35   #20
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Ok so you just send an email to Swarovski and they send you a pair free of charge?
I never used the loop connectors. I'll have to check them out.

The Circle connectors on my CL Companion 8x30 B started coming loose so I called Swarovski about them and they sent me 2 free replacements. These are working fine but I find that I'm always looking at them to see if they are tight.

I don't know if I would feel more secure using loop connectors? Any thoughts on that?

Bob

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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 20:40   #21
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Ok thanks for the info! I'm asking allot of questions about different things ITT because I want to be 100% sure on my next bin purchase.
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 23:12   #22
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I never used the loop connectors. I'll have to check them out.

The Circle connectors on my CL Companion 8x30 B started coming loose so I called Swarovski about them and they sent me 2 free replacements. These are working fine but I find that I'm always looking at them to see if they are tight.

I don't know if I would feel more secure using loop connectors? Any thoughts on that?

Bob
I would love loop connectors but that's not possible on these bins. Unless there is something I'm missing here looks like you must use Swarovski system and connectors. What do you have hooked to the connectors? And how did they come loose?
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Old Monday 20th January 2020, 23:35   #23
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Bob and PD,

If I follow the question correctly: Swarovski does make "loop connectors "which allow the use of standard straps and/or harnesses on the FP models. However for the CL model as I recall you also have to get the pins for the SV series because the pins that come with the CL are too short to install the loop connectors. The loop connectors and the pins do not usually come as a set. In any case the FP attachments according to some reports, and one experience I had, can come loose during use. I double check mine every time before going out.

Hope this helps.

Mike
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Old Tuesday 21st January 2020, 00:28   #24
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Bob and PD,

If I follow the question correctly: Swarovski does make "loop connectors "which allow the use of standard straps and/or harnesses on the FP models. However for the CL model as I recall you also have to get the pins for the SV series because the pins that come with the CL are too short to install the loop connectors. The loop connectors and the pins do not usually come as a set. In any case the FP attachments according to some reports, and one experience I had, can come loose during use. I double check mine every time before going out.

Hope this helps.

Mike
That's not good. Too bad they had to change the connection. I much prefer loops. They are simple and work. Proprietary connectors and loose parts is enough to make me look at a different model. The CL B companion had the loop system adaptable to standard type straps.
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Old Tuesday 21st January 2020, 14:36   #25
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Bob and PD,

If I follow the question correctly: Swarovski does make "loop connectors "which allow the use of standard straps and/or harnesses on the FP models. However for the CL model as I recall you also have to get the pins for the SV series because the pins that come with the CL are too short to install the loop connectors. The loop connectors and the pins do not usually come as a set. In any case the FP attachments according to some reports, and one experience I had, can come loose during use. I double check mine every time before going out.

Hope this helps.

Mike



Thanks Mike,

I had forgotten that the CL Companion B series binoculars use shorter connector Pins than the other Swarovski binoculars use.

So, like you, I'll just continue to double check them when I use my CL Companion 8x30 B.

Bob

Last edited by ceasar : Tuesday 21st January 2020 at 14:39.
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