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Is there a a little more bright, wider FoVd & neutral color Toric for <=$1000?

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Old Thursday 29th November 2018, 01:32   #1
mskb
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Is there a a little more bright, wider FoVd & neutral color Toric for <=$1000?

Hi Everyone,

I recently purchased an 8x42 Tract Toric Schott HT, and I am blown away, given my previous experience with the LegendM/Monarch7 bins.

The snappy focus with which the Toric latches on to subjects, even moving ones, the clarity, punchy contrast, sharpness, almost-neutral color, and well balanced nature of it - all great! So great! The very clean, precise focus, contrast are definitely some of the things I miss with my current bins. I feel the Toric has higher clarity/sharpness, but I could be misinterpreting things, and that conclusion is best left to the eyes of an expert. So sharpness-wise, not sure yet.

I only wish the Toric had, additionally, :
(1) a little more FoV: the M7 / Legend M / MonarchHG FoVs would be ideal!,
(2) a little more brightness - at least as well as the M7, if possible for the price
(3) not overly deviating from the colors of an M7/MonarchHG. ( Yes, I am being picky here with the current slight creamy yellowy Toric colors. :) )

From a trade off perspective, (a) I am OK with just an above-average job on the CA for now. Of course, the Legend M-like CA control would be ideal! (b) I do not care about perfect edge sharpness. Something like the Torics/Legend M's edges are just fine. (c) Weight-wise, something like an M7 would be ideal, but I can work around Toric heavy-ness too.

I might be asking too much; but just wondering: Besides the MonarchHG, does such a binocular exist for <$1000 in an 8x42 size? Less than $700 - say as a demo / in sale prices would be ideal! Could those with experience with the Toric / its relatively close cousins chime in?

Thank you,
Kumar
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Old Thursday 29th November 2018, 01:45   #2
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To me you have described the MHG...
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Old Thursday 29th November 2018, 14:43   #3
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To me you have described the MHG...
Haha, thanks @pbjosh!
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Old Friday 30th November 2018, 21:04   #4
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Sorry for the brief response but I do not know of another bin on the market that checks those boxes. The strengths of the MHG are FOV, contrast, and ergonomics. Image quality is excellent but not better than most other $600-1000 binoculars. CA control is good but not as good as some other $600-1000 bins. I don't know of any other bin in that price range that has the combo of features, particularly FOV, you're looking for. Not sure if any of the Meopta/Cabela's models would compete on FOV; as far as I recall Zeiss, Swaro, Leica, Tract, GPO, Maven, and others playing in this space don't have anything with that FOV. To get a noticeable "upgrade" from the MHG, you need to go to a true alpha, in my opinion.

One other negative (potentially) of the MHG is durability if you're a "use it every day, take it into the brush and jungle" type user. I have a few friends who have had repeated durability problems (eye cups and armor separating) with both MHGs and EDGs, whereas Swaros/Leicas/Zeiss sub-alpha and alpha seem to take the thrashing better.
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Old Friday 30th November 2018, 23:46   #5
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What is up with this stuff.?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mskb View Post
Hi Everyone,

I recently purchased an 8x42 Tract Toric Schott HT, and I am blown away, given my previous experience with the LegendM/Monarch7 bins.

The snappy focus with which the Toric latches on to subjects, even moving ones, the clarity, punchy contrast, sharpness, almost-neutral color, and well balanced nature of it - all great! So great! The very clean, precise focus, contrast are definitely some of the things I miss with my current bins. I feel the Toric has higher clarity/sharpness, but I could be misinterpreting things, and that conclusion is best left to the eyes of an expert. So sharpness-wise, not sure yet.

I only wish the Toric had, additionally, :
(1) a little more FoV: the M7 / Legend M / MonarchHG FoVs would be ideal!,
(2) a little more brightness - at least as well as the M7, if possible for the price
(3) not overly deviating from the colors of an M7/MonarchHG. ( Yes, I am being picky here with the current slight creamy yellowy Toric colors. :) )

From a trade off perspective, (a) I am OK with just an above-average job on the CA for now. Of course, the Legend M-like CA control would be ideal! (b) I do not care about perfect edge sharpness. Something like the Torics/Legend M's edges are just fine. (c) Weight-wise, something like an M7 would be ideal, but I can work around Toric heavy-ness too.

I might be asking too much; but just wondering: Besides the MonarchHG, does such a binocular exist for <$1000 in an 8x42 size? Less than $700 - say as a demo / in sale prices would be ideal! Could those with experience with the Toric / its relatively close cousins chime in?

Thank you,
Kumar
Your post is too cute to be real. I question your post as picking on a particular
binocular model, not mentioning the brand, etc.

You are blown away with the quality of the Tract Toric. Leave your post as is.

I only wish is BS. I have a strong BS detector.

Jerry
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 01:28   #6
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Thanks @pbjosh. Much appreciated! It appears like MHG loses a bit with center sharpness & CA, so I will check out if that bothers me too much. We intend to get one this weekend. We shall see!

@NDHunter, sorry if the post appeared that way. Wasn't my intention!
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 06:42   #7
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Hey Jerry: My folks used to say ďif you donít have anything nice to say donít say anything at allĒ. I think all of here, myself included, would benefit from that advice. mskb is being quite earnest and thatís a trait I admire. We donít need to chastise those who seek advice here.
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 09:38   #8
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Originally Posted by NDhunter View Post
Your post is too cute to be real. I question your post as picking on a particular
binocular model, not mentioning the brand, etc.

You are blown away with the quality of the Tract Toric. Leave your post as is.

I only wish is BS. I have a strong BS detector.

Jerry
Jerry

There is nothing wrong with a member looking for that extra 5% from a bino, except it might be hard to find.

Lee
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 09:42   #9
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Kumar
Sounds like you are searching for the extra 5% of performance that will deliver binocular perfection.
It can be fun searching for the binos that suit you best but it can also be frustrating. A bino that delivers a bit more brightness and sharpness maybe doesn't have the field of view you want. The one with the right colour balance and field of view isn't quite bright enough etc etc.

Good luck with your search.

Lee
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 12:14   #10
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I would just find a used HG. I really like the overall package it provides. I recently tried one outside at a birding store and promptly went home and sold a bunch of stuff and then went back and bought it. It gave me an acute and severe case of the "need it nows." I have had a small handful of alphas before and while the HG is indeed not quite as good optically, it certainly is still very good and enjoyable and the colors, weight, eye relief, and FOV really balance it out to what I feel is an unrivaled practical using unit.

Last edited by Inquisitor : Saturday 1st December 2018 at 12:19.
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 12:15   #11
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The way Lee phrases it makes me think this: if you want that step up from the MHG what most comes to mind is the Zeiss SF. It is sharper, brighter, has a stunning FOV, and great ergonomics. A touch heavier and definitely larger but the excellent ergonomics make up for that. Price is not comparable however, even used.
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 17:27   #12
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mksb,

When Jerry gets up on the wrong side of the bed, my advise is to simply not pay any attention to him. We all have our moments, myself certainly included.

It is my experience that people assume there will be more "improvement" going from a Toric type binocular to something else that matches your desired goals than they will actually find. Your description of the Toric brings to mind the bit of wisdom "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". Binocular searches often change that to "if it ain't broke, I can fix that". I have further come to conclude that in the broad range of binoculars starting at the price level of the Toric and cruising upward to the double that price of something like the Leica Trinovid HD that optical image improvement is insignificant. My definition of significant is a difference that can be immediately obvious and one that you do not need a tripod mounted binocular to discern. If you put a Toric and something like a Swarovski SLC, both tripod mounted, at the same time and place, with the same targets you may well conclude the SLC image is "better". I did. But in order to reach that point you will have a stress headache from straining to separate the details. This falls into my personal, subjective criteria of insignificant. To somebody else, any finding of superiority will immediately be significant enough to make a difference.

Any binocular we choose is a collection of compromises. I think it will be pretty hard to improve much on your stated impression of the Toric binocular. You might find one brighter to your eye, but it may have some other facet of the view you don't like.

Some people view a company with what they feel has an established history to be a deal maker or breaker. Ultimate user satisfaction with an optical instrument is largely in the viewers perceptions. There is always the little voice/voices constantly whispering that there has to be a "better" one than what we have. There may well be, but that can get expensive. Sometimes the little voices can be quelled pretty easily. Maybe they don't be quiet until the user realizes they have spent ally of the money they can spend on the best binocular they have found for them. At any rate those voices quiet down somewhere along the path between those two extremes.

It usually takes a year or so of viewing through all seasons and weather changes to really evaluate a binocular. My advise to you is to just keep the Toric. Start saving up and when you decide the Toric needs replacement, the funds will be there. Or if the Toric still suits, use the money for a viewing trip.
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Last edited by Steve C : Saturday 1st December 2018 at 17:34.
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 19:52   #13
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"Any binocular we choose is a collection of compromises"

Steve this is a great quote for binocular shoppers.

Andy W.
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 20:46   #14
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Quote:
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.....


It usually takes a year or so of viewing through all seasons and weather changes to really evaluate a binocular.....
I can't agree more on this point. I've owned some glass that, in good light, seemed outstanding, then completely fell on its' respective face in poor or adverse light conditions. I wouldn't say a year, but testing in all types of weather, over the course of several weeks is certainly advisable.
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Old Saturday 1st December 2018, 22:47   #15
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Hey Jerry: My folks used to say ďif you donít have anything nice to say donít say anything at allĒ. I think all of here, myself included, would benefit from that advice. mskb is being quite earnest and thatís a trait I admire. We donít need to chastise those who seek advice here.
Hello Upland,

I have to disagree. Some binoculars, even highly praised ones, may have a drawback which should be pointed out.

Happy bird watching,
Arthur Pinewood
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Old Sunday 2nd December 2018, 16:50   #16
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Hello Upland,

I have to disagree. Some binoculars, even highly praised ones, may have a drawback which should be pointed out.

Happy bird watching,
Arthur Pinewood
You obviously missed the point entirely. It had nothing to do about pointing out flaws. It was entirely about how we treat people on the forum. Telling someone their post is BS has nothing to do with criticism of a bino.
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Old Tuesday 4th December 2018, 01:11   #17
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You obviously missed the point entirely. It had nothing to do about pointing out flaws. It was entirely about how we treat people on the forum. Telling someone their post is BS has nothing to do with criticism of a bino.
I got the point, the OP seems to want more than the Tract Toric.

The story led me astray. The Nikon binoculars mentioned are very good.

If you don't like that, then..

Jerry
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Old Tuesday 4th December 2018, 15:00   #18
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I've been in discussion with OP for about 2-3 weeks, I'd argue not that he wants a superior Toric, but that he wants something that may give up some of the best attributes of the Toric in exchange for a wider field. The Monarch HG is obviously the best option, but it is a little more than he is wanting to spend at present. I didn't have any recommendations to fit this bill, outside of a brief mention of the new wider field MiC Vortex Viper HD (which I've not tried, so I don't know how its optics compare to the old MiJ narrow field Viper HD), and so he posted this question to ask for others' opinions.
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Old Thursday 6th December 2018, 01:10   #19
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I've looked through the Opticron version, prior to the introduction of HT glass, and thought the image it offered was very good, albeit with a narrow field of view. Better image quality combined with a larger field of view will likely push you over your budget unless you go secondhand.
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Old Thursday 6th December 2018, 15:50   #20
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@SteveC, thank you so much for your detailed insights! Over the weekend, I took the Toric 8x42 to a wildlife refuge. Roughly 8000 snow geese had dropped, it was a great sight to watch and follow with the Toric, as the focus was snappy, and the contrast punchy! The day turned to being dark, gloomy and dull, and like @jamesholdsworth mentions with some of his other binoculars, I felt things started getting trickier with the Toric. We had the Monarch7 to compare against. The advantages the Toric had over the M7 in terms of snappier focus and sharpness did vanish in that dull light; the M7 appeared brighter. CA felt a little high with the Toric - this could possibly be because of not getting a precise focus in dull light / tricky eye placement issues. I am no expert with these things, just mentioning some of my observations.

All of your statements (thanks @typo, @jremmons, @Upland, @pbjosh, @Troubador, @Inquisitor, @Patudo & @Canip / @Chuck's previous threads) makes it abundantly clear that there are trade offs associated, and one needs to spend top dollars to see some of that gone. Ergonomically, I think the M7 worked the best for me (although I felt like the Toric gave me less shaky view), so I expect the MHG to do as well at least. Given your comments, I feel quite good about ordering an MHG and trying them side by side with the Toric. With @Upland’s help, we ordered an MHG on sale prices. I will definitely write back mentioning what I end up deciding to keep. Thank you very much for all your help and support!
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Old Thursday 6th December 2018, 16:55   #21
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Even the top tier of binoculars have trade offs. That never goes away. Your binoculars are not your binoculars because they are perfect. They are your binoculars largely because you can accept the trades offs they have, sort of the same as with your friends I suppose.

I have long ago given up being surprised at differing reactions to the same binocular. You and I see the Toric and the Monarch 7 in sort of opposite ways. However I could be fine with either one. I have never had the chance to see a Monarch HG. However from looking at its specifications balanced against what you say you want then I see it as likely the best first option. Just don't fill yourself up with any preconceived ideas of what the HG will be based on what we have all said about them. Just take it out of the box and let it tell you what it has to tell you. Yours is the only opinion that matters.
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Old Thursday 6th December 2018, 17:19   #22
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Even the top tier of binoculars have trade offs. That never goes away. Your binoculars are not your binoculars because they are perfect. They are your binoculars largely because you can accept the trades offs they have, sort of the same as with your friends I suppose.

I have long ago given up being surprised at differing reactions to the same binocular. You and I see the Toric and the Monarch 7 in sort of opposite ways. However I could be fine with either one. I have never had the chance to see a Monarch HG. However from looking at its specifications balanced against what you say you want then I see it as likely the best first option. Just don't fill yourself up with any preconceived ideas of what the HG will be based on what we have all said about them. Just take it out of the box and let it tell you what it has to tell you. Yours is the only opinion that matters.
The more binoculars I look at, the more I agree with all of this statement. Well said.
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Old Thursday 6th December 2018, 19:43   #23
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Even the top tier of binoculars have trade offs. That never goes away. Your binoculars are not your binoculars because they are perfect. They are your binoculars largely because you can accept the trades offs they have, sort of the same as with your friends I suppose.
Agreed. After owning basically one model or another from all the top manufacturer's, that is why I have yet been able to justify keeping an alpha, given the price - my monetary supply is limited, so if I have to make trade-offs, I may as well make them in a more budget friendly option.

Now, an alpha with no-tradeoffs would be a sight worth seeing... Swarovski's SLC HD is close, but not quite perfect to my eyes.
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Old Thursday 6th December 2018, 20:31   #24
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It's a strong argument for not just going all in on 1 top alpha and expecting to be satisfied. With so many really good mid-priced binoculars buying in different formats, sizes, fov etc over a period of time and getting to know what suits is no bad thing. Sometimes people say you'd be better off putting this money into 1 alpha. I disagree as that 1 alpha is still going to be a compromise and not as versatile as a few good mid-priced bins that you've acquired for different situations.

mskb, looking forward to hearing how you get on with the MHG.
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Old Friday 7th December 2018, 04:07   #25
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@SteveC, thank you so much for your detailed insights! Over the weekend, I took the Toric 8x42 to a wildlife refuge. Roughly 8000 snow geese had dropped, it was a great sight to watch and follow with the Toric, as the focus was snappy, and the contrast punchy! The day turned to being dark, gloomy and dull, and like @jamesholdsworth mentions with some of his other binoculars, I felt things started getting trickier with the Toric. We had the Monarch7 to compare against. The advantages the Toric had over the M7 in terms of snappier focus and sharpness did vanish in that dull light; the M7 appeared brighter. CA felt a little high with the Toric - this could possibly be because of not getting a precise focus in dull light / tricky eye placement issues. I am no expert with these things, just mentioning some of my observations.

All of your statements (thanks @typo, @jremmons, @Upland, @pbjosh, @Troubador, @Inquisitor, @Patudo & @Canip / @Chuck's previous threads) makes it abundantly clear that there are trade offs associated, and one needs to spend top dollars to see some of that gone. Ergonomically, I think the M7 worked the best for me (although I felt like the Toric gave me less shaky view), so I expect the MHG to do as well at least. Given your comments, I feel quite good about ordering an MHG and trying them side by side with the Toric. With @Upland’s help, we ordered an MHG on sale prices. I will definitely write back mentioning what I end up deciding to keep. Thank you very much for all your help and support!
I think you will be happy with the HG.

As someone who has just got one and was previously using the Monarch 7 I can say it is an improvement in every facet. Sharper, brighter, more contrast, much much better glare control and sweet spot is big (not quite edge to edge but definitely not distracting or dark on the edge like the 7 can be in some conditions). The HG is also much better built. I thought the Monarch 7 was a good focuser but using them side by side the HG has better focus snap and requires less fine adjustment.

It's a great bino. Proabably as good as I will ever need. Any missed IDs are my fault as a birder and not the bin. Just use it and enjoy.

Last edited by oxygen : Friday 7th December 2018 at 04:12.
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