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Recommend the next Alpha bino?

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Old Monday 3rd March 2008, 03:09   #1
etc
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Recommend the next Alpha bino?

I already have two 8x42 power "Alpha" binos (i.e. the Big Three) and since I don't need both in the same power range that basically do the same thing, I will be selling one.

I want to get a different configuration that does something slightly different but have a hard time making up my mind on what exactly to get.

My thoughts are:

1) 10x50, like Leica Trinovid or Ultravid or Swarovski SLC. I would keep the same 5mm exit pupil size and have probably the ultimate optics. Disadvantage: Heavy and bulky.

2) 7x42, Ultravid or Swarovski SLC. Probably more practical than the above. The view is more steady. That's about all. Not sure of any real benefits over 8x I already have - what one does, so does the other.

3) 8x32 Ultravid or 8x32 Swarovski EL, or a Zeiss equivalent. Advantage: Compactness and weight. Disadvantage: Not sure I would get enough eye relief.

4) Zeiss 10x42 FL. Advantage: Best focus past infinity overdrive than other "Alpha" binos so I could use it without glasses. It has -7D of overdrive, which is important. I keep hearing good things about its optics, that it's supposedly the best "Alpha" bino. But enough eye relief, and is the focus too fast.

5) Canon IS, in either 10 or 12x power. Never tested one but I have their IS digicam and it works wonderfully. I do have reservations about relying on batteries and long-term reliability of the mechanism.

Last edited by etc : Monday 3rd March 2008 at 03:19.
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Old Monday 3rd March 2008, 10:30   #2
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Hello Etc,

Do you intend to use your new configuration instead of your 8x42 or with your 8x42?

Happy bird watching,
Arthur Pinewood
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Old Monday 3rd March 2008, 19:03   #3
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one at a time

why use both at the same time
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Old Monday 3rd March 2008, 20:19   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by etc View Post
one at a time

why use both at the same time
Etc,

I sometimes carry a 7x42 and a 10x32 and I know someone who carries a 10x42 and an 8x32. I like the FOV and stability of the 7x42, and my 10x32 has enough extra magnification to warrant the weight. Otherwise, I use just an 8x32. In my book, 7x42, 8x42 or 8x32 might be a first choice depending on a lot of personal preferences and application.
Although my 10x32 has a little extra "reach," I cannot use any ten power as my primary glass. However, an IS might suit you, but they can be bulky.

Do you observe a lot at dawn or dusk?

Happy bird watching,
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Old Monday 3rd March 2008, 21:40   #5
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You should look at the Leupold Switch Power when it comes out. Two binos in one?
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Old Monday 3rd March 2008, 21:59   #6
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Hi etc., I find Canon IS 12x36 a nice complement to good 8x bins, for those occasions when high mag is a great benefit. They're pretty compact, and just as light as my EL 8x32's. I wouldn't worry too much about the batteries issue. I just carry a spare pair in my bag. They last about 5 hours. Although the glass isn't "alpha" class, the IS more than compensates, and I can discern far more detail with them than I can with "alpha" 10x non-IS bins. They also cost far less than alpha bins! Best of Luck with your choice.
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Old Tuesday 4th March 2008, 00:17   #7
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I am curious why you specifically left out the 7x42 FL in your 7x42 choices? Personally I find it offers the best image out of any of the FLs I have had the privelege to own/try....at least for my tastes.
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Old Tuesday 4th March 2008, 02:35   #8
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Good point. I should only consider Zeiss and Swarovski, because they have enough focus past infinity for me while Leica doesn't.

Basically it's the question of going in the 7x direction or 10x direction. 7x42, or 10x50 (or 10x42)


Actually looking at the Zeiss page, Victory 8x32 T* FL sounds really interesting. ER is 16mm so I can use it with glasses, but also if enough focus overdrive, without glasses. The weight is under 20oz so it's featherweight.
I would expect it to be optically inferior to 8x42 and others but compact enough to be a constant companion.

Last edited by etc : Tuesday 4th March 2008 at 02:48.
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Old Tuesday 4th March 2008, 04:36   #9
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Try a 7x42 Leica BN. Just try them. They are made by god! I assure you.

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Old Tuesday 4th March 2008, 12:22   #10
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I cannot use Leica Trinovid BN 7x42 without eyeglasses, my eyesight is that bad. Even when I turn the focus wheel all the way clockwise, it's still not enough by a good 1 or 2D.
With Swaro EL, I can, and I with Zeiss, I should be able to.
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Old Tuesday 4th March 2008, 23:25   #11
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Quote:
Actually looking at the Zeiss page, Victory 8x32 T* FL sounds really interesting. ER is 16mm so I can use it with glasses, but also if enough focus overdrive, without glasses. The weight is under 20oz so it's featherweight.
I would expect it to be optically inferior to 8x42 and others but compact enough to be a constant companion.
I think it may surprise you. I had the 8x32 FL for a time and was very pleased with it optically, even compared to the larger 42 mm models. I use my 7x42 primarily for hawkwatching in the fall and spring. I enjoy it because of its crisp, bright and wide image as it makes finding raptors against the blue and white sky much easier for me. On a few occasions last year I substituted the 8x32 for it. Surprisingly it worked quite well. Usually I prefer larger objectives/larger exit pupils for obvious reasons but this little gem performed well beyond my expectations for this application.
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Old Wednesday 5th March 2008, 02:03   #12
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My thinking is, I can go larger to 10x, probably 10x50, or I can go compact, like 8x32. I think any 10x50 would outperform anything I have now, even Swaro EL. 10x50 is the ultimate optic I think.

However, 8x32 scores higher on practicality aspect.

Leica Trinovid/Ultravid 8x32 is disqualified for its lack of sufficient focus overtravel past infinity for me; Swaro EL 8x32 apparently suffers from same. That leaves Zeiss 8x32. Of course there is also SLC 8x30 but it's supposedly a generation behind.
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Old Wednesday 5th March 2008, 23:02   #13
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The two 10x50s that I was most impressed with were the Swaro SLC and the Meopta Meostar. The latter suffered from a little more CA than the former but, optically, other than that I thought the two were entirely comparable. Physically the Meopta is lighter but not as refined mechanically.
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