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Allbinos.com review - New Swarovski CL Companion 8x30 B

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Old Tuesday 7th May 2019, 14:37   #1
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Allbinos.com review - New Swarovski CL Companion 8x30 B

https://www.allbinos.com/index.php?t...tki&test_l=330
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Old Tuesday 7th May 2019, 17:08   #2
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Well....that's about what has been said by current owners here on BF all along! WELL before this review too. And I don't even HAVE one....YET!

I'm by no means any binocular brand "fanboy" but folks have to admit...Swarovski is doing things right and very consistently too.
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Old Tuesday 7th May 2019, 20:51   #3
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Allbino's complained about the Swarovski CL Companion 8x30 B but sill ranked it 4th over some highly touted 8x32's like the Nikon SE, Leica Ultravid HD and the Zeiss Conquest HD. That is pretty impressive for a smaller 30mm binocular. If Allbino's tested the Swarovski SV 8x32 it would be interesting to see if it could could edge(play on words) the Nikon EDG 8x32 out of first place. The EDG would beat the SV on CA and internal reflections or glare and the SV would dominate in astigmatism, coma, and darkness at the edge of the field. Things Allbino's don't test are important also. The EDG has by far the smoothest focuser and the SV has the best accessories like objective covers, rainguard, strap and case. What I don't understand is why Nikon went through the trouble to put a little bump to hold their objective covers on and THEN they made them too small to fit tightly in the opening so they keep popping out and they have NEVER fixed them. You can't even replace them with a different objective cover because of the darn bump! The SV's edges are slightly sharper and the field is slightly flatter than the EDG but this can create rolling ball caused by AMD distortion for some people. If you are bothered by RB the EDG is a better binocular for you than the SV. It is less likely to show RB. The SV has a slightly bigger FOV than the EDG also but the EDG has a very large FOV except in the 7x42 which is kind of small for a 7x42. Also, Swarovski has by far the best customer service and the best warranty and will bend over backwards to satisfy you. Nikon is a distant 2nd in my experience. I have the SV 8x32, SV 8.5x42, SV 10x32, Swarovski 8x25 CL-P, Ultravid 8x20 BCR, Nikon 7x15 reverse porro and the Nikon EDG 10x32. The SV and EDG are both excellent in the 10x32 format and each has it's strong points and weak points. I like them both. It is weird that Nikon can manufacture such great optics as in the EDG binocular but then conversely be so lame when it comes to designing an objective cover. Maybe they need more mechanical engineers instead of optical engineers to design their accessories.

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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 01:27   #4
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Nikon is pretty clueless when it comes to marketing. As we speak, I've had conversations with them about their Nikon Laserforce bino/rf unit. Nikon CS says the unit carries a lifetime warranty on the binoculars as well as the electronics. They even sent me an email and put it in writing. Problem is, when you open the box, one of the first things you see is a pink colored warranty registration card, specifically stating that the warranty is lifetime no fault on bino, 2 years on electronics. Nikon doesn't even know what's going on with their own product.
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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 03:52   #5
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Allbino's complained about the Swarovski CL Companion 8x30 B but sill ranked it 4th over some highly touted 8x32's like the Nikon SE, Leica Ultravid HD and the Zeiss Conquest HD. That is pretty impressive for a smaller 30mm binocular. If Allbino's tested the Swarovski SV 8x32 it would be interesting to see if it could could edge(play on words) the Nikon EDG 8x32 out of first place. The EDG would beat the SV on CA and internal reflections or glare and the SV would dominate in astigmatism, coma, and darkness at the edge of the field. Things Allbino's don't test are important also. The EDG has by far the smoothest focuser and the SV has the best accessories like objective covers, rainguard, strap and case. What I don't understand is why Nikon went through the trouble to put a little bump to hold their objective covers on and THEN they made them too small to fit tightly in the opening so they keep popping out and they have NEVER fixed them. You can't even replace them with a different objective cover because of the darn bump! The SV's edges are slightly sharper and the field is slightly flatter than the EDG but this can create rolling ball caused by AMD distortion for some people. If you are bothered by RB the EDG is a better binocular for you than the SV. It is less likely to show RB. The SV has a slightly bigger FOV than the EDG also but the EDG has a very large FOV except in the 7x42 which is kind of small for a 7x42. Also, Swarovski has by far the best customer service and the best warranty and will bend over backwards to satisfy you. Nikon is a distant 2nd in my experience. I have the SV 8x32, SV 8.5x42, SV 10x32, Swarovski 8x25 CL-P, Ultravid 8x20 BCR, Nikon 7x15 reverse porro and the Nikon EDG 10x32. The SV and EDG are both excellent in the 10x32 format and each has it's strong points and weak points. I like them both. It is weird that Nikon can manufacture such great optics as in the EDG binocular but then conversely be so lame when it comes to designing an objective cover. Maybe they need more mechanical engineers instead of optical engineers to design their accessories.

Dennis,

The Nikon 7x42 EDG has an 8º FOV which is normal for a 7x42. It is the same as the Swarovski SLC Neu 7x42 B and the Leica 7x42 Ultravid.

Bob
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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 04:05   #6
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Dennis,

The Nikon 7x42 EDG has an 8º FOV which is normal for a 7x42. It is the same as the Swarovski SLC Neu 7x42 B and the Leica 7x42 Ultravid.

Bob
Normal, but not exceptional. An 8 degree FOV on a 7x only gives you a 56 degree AFOV which is just not that impressive to me when it comes to the WOW factor. When I buy an alpha and pay big bucks I want an above average AFOV. I prefer the Zeiss FL 7x42 in a 7x over the EDG for that reason. With it's 8.6 degree FOV it pushes to a 60.2 degree AFOV which is much more impressive to me. Now the Nikon EDG 10x32 which I have has a 6.5 degree FOV which gives you a 65 degree AFOV. Now you are talking! A much more WOW view in the 10x32 EDG than the 7x42 EDG. I like over a 60 degree AFOV in general for me to be a happy camper.
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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 12:46   #7
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I guess some folks think a 8X32 is too big so they need to get an 8X30 CL?, this has to be marketing. I would take a SE 8X32 way over a CL 8X30 any day of the week. I in fact use the SEs and the EII more than my other roofs in 8X32.

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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 13:51   #8
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I guess some folks think a 8X32 is too big so they need to get an 8X30 CL?, this has to be marketing. I would take a SE 8X32 way over a CL 8X30 any day of the week. I in fact use the SEs and the EII more than my other roofs in 8X32.

Andy W.
Andy

I use my Swarovski CL Companion 8x30 B because it has the easiest eye placement of any binocular I have ever used! I have no problem with blackouts at all and because of the design of its eyepieces I can place them up against my eyebrows or back in my eye sockets with out getting blackouts.

The Allbino's review doesn't discuss this "optical box" versatility built into its eyepiece which we have been discussing here on Bird Forum since it was introduced.

It comes down to a matter of comfort of use which seems to me is an issue that is hardly ever discussed here when it comes to binoculars. Small variations of FOV are given undue importance.

Binoculars are made with an extra 1/2º FOV which could cause blackouts and egg shaped exit pupils when one with 1/2º less FOV would avoid those problems and in practical use that difference in FOV is meaningless.

Incidentally Andy, if I'm not mistaken, your EII (which you use more than your roofs) is an 8x30 (unless you have the 10x35).. I have one of them too.

Bob

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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 14:19   #9
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Normal, but not exceptional. An 8 degree FOV on a 7x only gives you a 56 degree AFOV which is just not that impressive to me when it comes to the WOW factor. When I buy an alpha and pay big bucks I want an above average AFOV. I prefer the Zeiss FL 7x42 in a 7x over the EDG for that reason. With it's 8.6 degree FOV it pushes to a 60.2 degree AFOV which is much more impressive to me. Now the Nikon EDG 10x32 which I have has a 6.5 degree FOV which gives you a 65 degree AFOV. Now you are talking! A much more WOW view in the 10x32 EDG than the 7x42 EDG. I like over a 60 degree AFOV in general for me to be a happy camper.
Dennis,

Allbinos, for whatever reason, in its Binocular stats does not mention AFOV.

It gives Angular FOV in degrees (8º for Swaro and 8.5º for Zeiss) and Linear FOV in meters (140/1000 for Swaro) and (150/1000 for Zeiss). That is what the user making comparisons with binoculars has to work with.

Bob
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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 14:46   #10
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I guess some folks think a 8X32 is too big so they need to get an 8X30 CL?, this has to be marketing. I would take a SE 8X32 way over a CL 8X30 any day of the week. I in fact use the SEs and the EII more than my other roofs in 8X32.

Andy W.
The Swarovski 8x30 CL is significantly smaller and lighter than most 8x32's like the SE or EII. To a lot of people especially travelers that is very important. Also, many people especially those birding in wet or tropical climates need a waterproof and fog proof binocular.
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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 14:52   #11
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I just use the simple formula AFOV= Angular FOV x Magnification. So a Swarovski SV 8x32 would have an AFOV of 64 degree's.
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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 15:22   #12
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If I were to go to a tropical rain forest, (and I have been to many, I grew up in the tropics) I would take the Bushnell Legend M and the Meopta 7X42, done. An extra pound to me is nothing to carry. Sorry, but even with the "optical box" I would never spend over $1000 for an 8X30 CL.

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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 16:36   #13
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The Swarovski 8x30 CL is significantly smaller and lighter than most 8x32's like the SE or EII. To a lot of people especially travelers that is very important. Also, many people especially those birding in wet or tropical climates need a waterproof and fog proof binocular.
It is smaller and lighter than most 8x32s like the SE and 8x30 EII Porro prisms. In fact it is an excellent replacement for the very old popular and revered, recently discontinued Swarovski SLC New 8x30 WB; which was the size of most 8x32s.

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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 16:48   #14
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If I were to go to a tropical rain forest, (and I have been to many, I grew up in the tropics) I would take the Bushnell Legend M and the Meopta 7X42, done. An extra pound to me is nothing to carry. Sorry, but even with the "optical box" I would never spend over $1000 for an 8X30 CL.

Andy W.
Consider it the replacement for Swarovski's Classic SLC Neu 8x30 WB which goes back into the 1980s. There also was a 7x30 version back then.

The last 8x30 was made in 2010 I believe. I bought one and gave it to my son.

https://www.allbinos.com/243-Swarovs...fications.html

Bob
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Old Wednesday 8th May 2019, 22:33   #15
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If I were to go to a tropical rain forest, (and I have been to many, I grew up in the tropics) I would take the Bushnell Legend M and the Meopta 7X42, done. An extra pound to me is nothing to carry. Sorry, but even with the "optical box" I would never spend over $1000 for an 8X30 CL.

Andy W.
I think that is great that you are in the physical condition to not mind carrying a 42mm but there are a lot of women, seniors and people who just appreciate a smaller, lighter more compact binocular if it meets their needs for birding. I know as I get older I am leaning towards 32mm and smaller. Part of it is as you get older you can't take advantage of the bigger exit pupil anyway because your pupils don't open as wide so why carry the weight.
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 00:11   #16
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The CL Companion is wonderful, but for me the only advantage it has over the EL 8x32 is price. Yes, the CL is a little lighter: 1.31 lb. vs. 1.08 lb., but the larger objective EL has a better field of view, larger exit pupil, better eye relief, and significantly better minimum focus distance. The price difference is significant, almost double, but the EL is superior. Nothing against the CL, it's great- I almost bought it, but for me it has neither the ease of carry of smaller glass (like my Zeiss Victory Pocket), nor the performance of the larger glass.
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 01:04   #17
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So Dennis, are all middle aged folks required to use a 8X32 and 10X32, I know many men in their mid 60s still using 8X42s and 10X50s.

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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 03:50   #18
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I agree. I had the new Swarovski 8x30 CL and I now have the 8x32 SV and you are right. Although the CL is a good binocular the SV is definitely superior. It should be at twice the price!
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 04:06   #19
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I really think even though the average pupil diameter of a 60 year old man is 4mm there are many that have pupil diameters of 5mm and more. The 4mm is just that an average. If you are over 60 and you notice a difference in brightness between a 32mm and a 42mm then get the 42mm. It depends a lot on the type of birding you do also. If you are looking for owls at dusk or waterfowl early in the morning a 42mm could be advantageous. It also depends on your latitude and climate. If you live in a sunny country with many clear days like Colorado versus an area with a lot of fog and rain like Seattle that may influence your decision also. For me personally there is not a lot of advantage to using a 42mm because most of my birding is in good weather in the daytime and a 32mm will work well for that. That could be an affect of age also. As you get older most are probably not as likely to bird in inclement weather and at odd hours like before dawn and after dusk. Of course we are all different but for me those are the reasons I use a 32mm and under for most of my birding.
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 05:48   #20
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Dennis, post 15,
The changes in pupil size with age are certainly not so absolute as indicated in your table. There are large variations so a 60 year old can have a larger pupil size than indicated in the table and that has even be observed for eyes older than 60.
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 05:56   #21
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Dennis, post 15,
The changes in pupil size with age are certainly not so absolute as indicated in your table. There are large variations so a 60 year old can have a larger pupil size than indicated in the table and that has even be observed for eyes older than 60.
Gijs van Ginkel
I agree. I explained that in post 19. Those values are just averages.
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 06:36   #22
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I really think even though the average pupil diameter of a 60 year old man is 4mm there are many that have pupil diameters of 5mm and more. ....
.
Dennis,

Where on earth did you get an average of 4mm from? I've probably looked at something like a dozen studies of pupil diameter and age and nothing came close to that. The results do vary, mostly depending on the level of light used for testing and the time allowed for the eye to adapt. The results I've seen gave an average between 5 and 5.8mm at the age of 60, but none that I recall, actually attempted to determine a maximum diameter, which presumably would push the averages a little higher.

Attached are screen shots from just a couple of those studies.

Obviously age does take a toll on our eyesight, but don't put us in the grave just yet. I'm over sixty myself and quite aware my eyes are not what they once were, but I still get full value out of a 10x56 and the other visual metrics aren't too bad either.

David
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 12:27   #23
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Re. Post 15.
According to this my scotopic? pupil should be less than 3.0mm, as I am off the chart.

With the curtains drawn in daylight, where I can still see red, blue and brown objects, although brown isn't I suppose a colour, my pupil is 4.5mm.
At night I seem to use the whole of the Swift Audubon 8.5x44 pupil, about 5.2mm.

I had a fortuitous out of focus image that enabled me to estimate the diameter of an occlusion? in one eye as 0.36mm, with a considerably smaller linear offshoot. This is off centre, so does not affect things much, although I note a loss of fine resolution. It means I can use 0.5mm exit pupils in this eye, but still 0.3mm in my better eye.
The poorer eye, when rested is now 20/20, the better eye 20/16.
Five years ago both were 20/15.

A colleague measured his pupil as 7.0mm at age 65. However, another colleague measured 3.0mm at age 70. I recommended Canon IS binoculars, say 10x30, for the latter or Russian 12x40, 20x60 binoculars
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 14:52   #24
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I found the chart on a Google search. https://www.google.com/search?q=effe...V2AgPQM:&vet=1. Also, down below there is a link for the article which the chart is based on on diminishing pupil size with age and the research behind it. I think everybody is different as far as how much age affects your pupil size. The pupils CERTAINLY get smaller as you get older. How much probably depends on your genetics. I know personally I don't benefit that much any more from a 42mm in the kind of birding I do so for me so it is not worth it to lug around the bigger, heavier binocular but I am over 65. I noticed the change in the last couple of years so my fall off in pupil size has been sudden. IMO The benefit of a bigger aperture certainly decreases as we get older especially for brightness. You still have the advantage of easier eye placement with the bigger exit pupil though. What is interesting is they have found a correlation between pupil size and intelligence. So your bigger pupils could be a sign that you are smarter than me! Here is the research study for the chart with the institute and Doctor that did the study. He has practiced for 25 years so he is well qualified.

"INCREASING AGE, DIMINISHING PUPIL SIZE

Studies show that pupil size is largest during adolescence, and decreases with age. In fact, the pupil reaches its peak size under dim light conditions between 11-17 years old[1]. And whether they’re doing homework, Snapchatting, or taking in a new e-book, this age group is spends a ton of time viewing digital devices after dark. In fact, by the time the average American teenager reaches 17 years old, they will have spent 50,000 hours or 1/3 of their life viewing digital screens[2]. That’s a lot of blue light making it to the retina.

Senile miosis, the decrease in pupil size as we get older, has been attributed to both muscle atrophy, as well as nerve innervation changes along both the parasympathetic (pupillary constriction) and sympathetic (pupillary dilation) pathways[3]. As the following graph shows, the change in pupil size with age is significant[4].

Change in pupil size with age
Pupil size in light (photopic) and dark (scotopic) conditions changes significantly with age. From age 20 to 70, photopic size changes by 2.5 mm, and scotopic size changes by 5.0 mm. Source: NOVEL - Moran Eye Center
Interestingly, the drop in retinal luminance with age is most prominent in the 400-500nm range as shown in the graph below[5]. While this may be a natural protective measure for older eyes, young eyes are vulnerable. In fact, due to changes in the crystalline lens and pupil size, a typical 20 year old receives 3x the retinal luminance of a 60 year old[6].
Pupil-weighted spectral retinal illumination chart
Age-related losses in retinal illumination due to decreasing crystalline lens light transmission and pupil area. The percentage of loss per decade is reasonably uniform and most prominent at shorter violet (400–440 nm) and blue (440–500 nm) wavelengths​. Image: International Journal of Medical Science
And let’s not forget our children are getting an amplified dose of blue light intensity from viewing devices closer up. So young eyes are receiving more blue light on the retina at a significantly greater intensity.

The question that remains to be answered is whether or not that increased exposure will lead to retinal damage over time?

In part three of the series, we’ll discuss the density of a child’s crystalline lens, and how that can put them at greater risk of blue light exposure.
READ PART 3 OF THE SERIES
The Evolving Science of Blue Light White Paper
About the author: Dr. Gary Morgan has been in private practice for 25 years in Arizona, with an emphasis on the care of patients at risk of, or with AMD. An advocate for innovation, he serves in a technical advisory capacity to ophthalmic industry enterprises focusing on spectacle lenses, nutraceuticals, and telemedicine that are intent on lessening the effects of AMD and blue light.
Picture
Loewenfeld IE: “Simple, central” anisocoria: A common condition, seldom recognized. Trans Am Acad Ophthalmol, 1977; 82:832–839.
Source: http://vspblog.com/blue-light-infographic/
Richdale, K. Ocular and Refractive Considerations for the Aging Eye, Contact Lens Spectrum, February 2009
Benjamin W, Borish I. Borish's clinical refraction. Philadelphia: W.B. Saunders; 2006.
Bonmati-Carrion M et al. Protecting the Melatonin Rhythm through Circadian Healthy Light Exposure. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15(12), 23448-23500
Lighting Research Center, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institue, Troy NY. [url]http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/lightHealth/AARP/healthcare/lightingOlderAdults/agingEye.as

https://www.techshieldblue.com/tsb-b...light-exposure
http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/ne.../#.XNRDZYtKiUk
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Old Thursday 9th May 2019, 16:25   #25
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Thanks Dennis for the short paper above.
There are many different studies.

I think I have read that pupil size is a maximum around 20 years old, but I could be mistaken.
But I don't think that 11 to 17 or 20 year olds are as smart as they think.

I have seen quite a lot of cases on T.V. and in movies where pupils have reached 9mm in younger actors.
Apparently, at this size their eyes are very poor regarding resolution.
I won't give names, but some actors also seem to have tiny pupils, and I have seen various explanations for this.

Blue light is bad for humans and animals.
Blue LEDs are bad. But I think that the number of LEDs that have been made might be getting on for a trillion?
Light pollution is terribly bad, affecting circadian effects.
We are losing numerous species, and this is part of the problem.
Near blue light was considered most damaging.

For me, tiredness of my eyes is the limiting factor rather than pupil size, but I definitely see a brighter image at night with 5.2mm exit pupil rather than 4.0mm.
But I use Canon 18x50, 2.8mm.
Docter 10x25, 2.5mm.
8x32 BA, 4.0mm.
Swift HR/5 8.5x44, 5.2mm.
Telescopes, down to 0.3mm.
And anything else, really.

I have lost about one magnitude in the faintest stars that I can see from say 20 years old.
That is a 2.5 times loss.
However, I saw fainter stars at say 25 to 30 years of age than when 15 to 20 years, because I became a more experienced observer.
Even in my late forties I saw 15 or 16 Pleiads from La Palma at 7,900 ft on a night which the locals said was not very good. Without glasses.
Also 13 at sea level from a town by the sea. The 12th and 13th Pleiads are about magnitude 6.2 and 6.4.
The 8th Pleiad is magnitude 5.5.
Pleione is variable magnitude 4.8 to 5.5 and I used to see this variability easily with unaided eyes.
So 7 Pleiads are pretty easy at a dark site.
I easily saw 11 Pleiads next to the Harvard public 9.5 inch refractor when I showed a group the night sky, and always 11 from town at home when young.
The light pollution is so bad here now, I can hardly see any stars.

Regards,
B.

Last edited by Binastro : Thursday 9th May 2019 at 16:54.
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