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Always used 10x but thinking about switching to 8x

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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 13:54   #1
Winterdune
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Always used 10x but thinking about switching to 8x

Hi all,
Now in my 50s, I have used 10x bins all my life ever since starting birding when I was about 10 years old. I recently bought my partner a pair of 8x32s (Swarovski ELs) and I have taken them out on my own a few times and enjoyed using them. Some time soon I will update my 18 year old 10x42s and I'm seriously considering 8x. Have others made the switch and if so what was your thought process in deciding?
Thanks
Sean
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 14:10   #2
james holdsworth
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I'd used 10's for 30 years but switched to 8's recently and have never really thought I was missing anything in the field.

The 8's I use have a wider field, more depth of field, more contrast and steadier view than the 10 I came from. Viewing distant waterfowl, raptors, shorebirds etc., all of the above attributes make ID's equally certain and the 8's rule for passerines and insect observation.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 14:19   #3
PFG1
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I share a similar experience. I've used all 10x, but had the chance to spend some time with the 8x32 ELs.

I came away thinking that I'd like to use 8x.

And I have to wonder if part of that is the beautiful view through those 8x32 ELs. I have a sneaky feeling they could do it all...
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 14:24   #4
Maljunulo
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The first time I looked through an 8X32 EL SV, I was absolutely stunned by the view.

However, I cling stubbornly to my 10X42 EL SV, but if I were starting over I might choose differently.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 14:54   #5
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Originally Posted by seanofford View Post
Hi all,
Now in my 50s, I have used 10x bins all my life ever since starting birding when I was about 10 years old. I recently bought my partner a pair of 8x32s (Swarovski ELs) and I have taken them out on my own a few times and enjoyed using them. Some time soon I will update my 18 year old 10x42s and I'm seriously considering 8x. Have others made the switch and if so what was your thought process in deciding?
Thanks
Sean
I used a Bushnell 12x50 porro for 35 years. Now, have both 10X and 8X porros and roofs that are Much newer, offering superior optics, better handling, better ergonomics and never leaving me wanting another 12X. Of course back then, the old Bushnell only cost $50!

Ted
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 14:57   #6
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I’ve moved down to some 7x35 ultrawides, enable me to scan the field and find things that I can then get the scope on. Lower power is easier to hold still and the extra field is good for catching things out the corner of your eye. However younger me would probably have thought I was crazy going with “smaller, weaker” bins. Wisdom comes with age (and picking up stuff from other people withblarger binocular collections that me).

Peter
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 15:04   #7
Torview
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Try the 8.5x42 Swarovski el, you may find it does the lot.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 15:07   #8
black crow
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Originally Posted by seanofford View Post
Hi all,
Now in my 50s, I have used 10x bins all my life ever since starting birding when I was about 10 years old. I recently bought my partner a pair of 8x32s (Swarovski ELs) and I have taken them out on my own a few times and enjoyed using them. Some time soon I will update my 18 year old 10x42s and I'm seriously considering 8x. Have others made the switch and if so what was your thought process in deciding?
Thanks
Sean
I made a big deal recently about the advantages of 10x for myself. However as is often the case experience has proved me wrong. I can see better with a 6-8x than with a 10x in most situations. Plus a 10x limits FOV compared to most 8x and that's a big deal for me. One place I really do love a 10x is on a ultralite Monopod. This summer I plan to carry one and take my 10x out more often.

The sad thing is I spent more on my 10x than I have on any other of my binoculars and I feel a little silly and sad about that now. This forum is very humbling for me at times because I go off half cocked with my uninformed comments only to find I really wasn't right and often not even close. Everyone has been very kind towards me about this so far however.
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Last edited by black crow : Saturday 24th March 2018 at 15:15.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 16:22   #9
gunut
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between you, denny and myself....most are used to it....
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 17:18   #10
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I switched from 10x to 8x about 15 years ago and have never felt lacking. I just picked up a set of 6x for watching nature in the woods off my deck, and for treestand hunting. I have a feeling they are my new favorite bino's. I guess I prefer a more complete view with increased depth over excess magnification.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 17:24   #11
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I used to be a big-time hunter....ALWAYS used 10X42 OR a spotting scope. Picked up birding....a 7X or 8X is a natural. The SV 8.5X42 is a super go-between. I've been in MANY if not MOST situations where a 10X just wouldn't cut it but really none where an 8x OR 8.5X wouldn't work.

Deciding factors for ME....#1 is open terrain....if so, I'm likely to pack a 10X. Seashore(again, open terrain) probably a 10X. but an 8X ALWAYS works too.

I own and use WAY more 8X binoculars..
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 18:02   #12
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I've mostly stuck with 8x all along. Occasional forays into the world of 10x only proved that the added detail was often lost in the added shake.

8.5x is, however, an interesting situation. I mostly switch between 8x32 SV and 8.5x42 SV and on the whole the 8.5x does make a difference. It's subtle, but it's there. As others here have stated, I like it.

And I too have a sneaky feeling the 8x32 SV can "do it all."
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 18:34   #13
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I,ve been happy all my life with 8x mainly 8x30 thou even these on a hot day can you weigh you down..:) Thou haveing one eye I use a monocular now so even better than before pity I did,nt get one when I was 13 years old.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 19:39   #14
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I've always used 8x in most situations, but now in my mid-fifties, I'm beginning to really like 10x. I have no explanation for this. It just is.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 20:24   #15
Graham Osborne
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I switched about 11 or 12 years ago. I swapped Swaro EL 10x42 for Zeiss FL 8x32 and have never missed the higher power. There is a lot to be said for a wider view and less need for fine focusing.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 21:40   #16
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Try the 8.5x42 Swarovski el, you may find it does the lot.
Apart from the strap lugs that are so annoying on your fingers every time they are raised to your eyes.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 21:42   #17
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I have found for me 8x is the best magnification. To use 10x I need a monopod or an IS binocular because what you gain in detail is lost to shaking. I have found you can see just as much detail at 8x and have a bigger FOV and better DOF and less shaking. You just don't gain much with 10x and it is hard to hold steady for most people. I have all 8x binoculars now for different situations and uses. A Swarovski 8x25 CL-P (Hiking,Concerts), a new Swarovski 8x30 CL (General Purpose Birding), and a new Swarovski SLC HD 8x56 (Static, Stands, Short Hikes). Optically these three are very similar but rate good, better, and best with the big 56mm being the best by far.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 21:52   #18
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Apart from the strap lugs that are so annoying on your fingers every time they are raised to your eyes.
The 8.5x42 EL does things very well, and at the highest level.

Not sure why you are complaining about the lugs. Have you little experience with binoculars?

I am wondering if you know where to place your fingers
and thumbs...

Tell us more.

Jerry
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 22:13   #19
Hermann
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Well, I think it all depends. When I carry a scope 8x or even 7x works nicely for me. However, when I don't carry a scope, I very much prefer 10x. I can still hold 10x well enough to get more detail than with 8x or 7x.

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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 22:46   #20
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I am in my mid 70s and have mainly used 8x32 EL for some time, having previously tried both 10x42 ELs and EDG, and ultimately gave up on 10s. But for past 3 months I have been very excited about Zeiss SF 10x42 because for the first time I can hold a 10 power steady. Worked very well for me in AZ this winter. But will probably continue to use 8x32 when hiking or kayaking. And when in the jungle or forest I really like using 7x42.
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 22:56   #21
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I am in my mid 70s and have mainly used 8x32 EL for some time, having previously tried both 10x42 ELs and EDG, and ultimately gave up on 10s. But for past 3 months I have been very excited about Zeiss SF 10x42 because for the first time I can hold a 10 power steady. Worked very well for me in AZ this winter. But will probably continue to use 8x32 when hiking or kayaking. And when in the jungle or forest I really like using 7x42.
You have lots of very good reasons why there is not a perfect size for all.

I suppose that is why when you average everything out, 8 power rises
to the top. A great all around size.

Jerry
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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 23:05   #22
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Well, I think it all depends. When I carry a scope 8x or even 7x works nicely for me. However, when I don't carry a scope, I very much prefer 10x. I can still hold 10x well enough to get more detail than with 8x or 7x.

Hermann
I think you are better off with 8x and a good spotter. Spot them with the 8x and then move in for a close up with the spotter. For birding 8x is it.

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Old Saturday 24th March 2018, 23:45   #23
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10x in my 30's. 7x and 8x in my 50's. For me, less shake and see more detail with the lower power.

CG
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Old Sunday 25th March 2018, 00:48   #24
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I prefer 7/8X for stable targets that are relatively close at hand and 10X for moving targets. Handshake seems to disappear when tracking moving targets so the 10X is quite pleasant.
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Old Sunday 25th March 2018, 02:42   #25
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I prefer 7/8X for stable targets that are relatively close at hand and 10X for moving targets. Handshake seems to disappear when tracking moving targets so the 10X is quite pleasant.
Don't you find it harder to track moving targets with a 10x with it's smaller FOV? I always have.
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