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Old Wednesday 12th December 2018, 21:59   #51
wdc
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In the first photo in Henry's post I see from the top left, going clockwise: Not quite Pink, Almost Green, Kinda Orange, and Sort of Gray. There is very little to separate the two colors on the left. In the second, brightened photo they all are discernible, but nearly indistinguishable.
Precisely! I would add that the upper right (greenish square) appears to my eyes to be slightly brighter than either of its adjacent companions.

These are hairsplitting differences that have been given a contextual relationship to make them evident. I agree they exist.

The complexities of nature would likely mask these differences most of the time in real world use. The color shifts require a fairly neutral setting to be apparent.

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Old Wednesday 12th December 2018, 22:00   #52
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By the way - this is what is sometimes great about the Forum - how a conversation seamlessly takes in so many elements while not actually losing track of the central theme.....
What was the central theme of this thread again?

It's been informative, that's for sure.

When my wife ranked the binocs 1) Bushnell Legend M, 2) Swaro SLC, 3) Leupold Acadia, and put my beloved Zeiss Conquests in a dead last tie with my beloved Sightron's, I had to know just what in the he!! had just happened! ha, ha. My whole optical world was turned upside down in one minute.
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Old Wednesday 12th December 2018, 22:29   #53
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So far, we seem to have (via Typo) the research that perhaps women have a better 'sense' for colour, and that men, chromosomically speaking, may have something of a split on their red/green perception;
Justabirdwatcher likes the Sighton for the few failings that could annoy him, but both wife and daughter rated it towards the least of their preferences;
daughter (younger eyes, no glasses) picked out the Zeiss for its resolution;
we also have the issue of ergonomics (both as an assumed female preference, but also important in the field);
regular, experienced birders who would rather work with their beaten-up and mid-range bins than invest in something new;
that a single annoyance (e.g. CA) can be a real deal-breaker;
that 4 Alpha bins can demonstrate varied colour-casts, without any being extreme enough to be off-putting;
my point that familiarity and 'speed of use' in the field is an important factor

Plus some other points that perhaps i should have mentioned.

My conclusion from this is that we are all blessed/cursed with a range of physical characteristics regarding our eyes - some gender-based, some down to the individual and probably age. While all of the binoculars brought into the discussion are all suited to their main purpose, what may induce a preference is not just the optical quality, or the colour rendition, and that familiarity plays an important part in field operation, whatever state an old set might be in. The fit, feel, weight, ease of view may well outweigh what a spec sheet may say about a much more expensive pair of bins - as for most, it's all about 'getting on the bird,' as quickly as possible.
And we're faced with all this in the threads that start 'Which is better......?'!!
I think it's becoming obvious that none of them/all of them are!!

My findings amongst birders i know is that - providing the manufacturer is consistent - they will become a Swaro guy, or a Zeiss girl or similar. They are used to the colour bias, used to the focus gearing, happy with the general feel, balance, armouring etc. and generally familiar with the brand. When they replace, they replace with the same make.
I'm quite ok with the fact i like the Zeiss approach; whenever i look through Swaros, it's a bit of a shock. It's great - but different. I may have become so used to the 'green cast' that i don't see it, which is why Swarovski always seem pale to me.
So to draw this back to the original post: it seems perfectly understandable, with all these wide-ranging circumstances, that not just the inexperienced might prefer a cheaper pair over an Alpha, but that some very experienced birders might too - and we can spend forever working out why that might be, but only they will know.....
Anyway - that whisky hardly touched the sides......and i think i've drained my post energy.....
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 03:12   #54
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I've long found it curious that members here have distinctly different opinions on the colour balance of different binoculars, (Zeiss in paticular). Add in the popular view that women are often better at distinguishing colours than men and it got me wondering if there was an underlying reason.

Initially most scientific studies I found appeared to show that outside the classic types of colour blindness which affect about 8%of men and 1% of women there was very little if any gender difference. Virtually all these studies used a anomaloscope for the investigation. It's an instrument first devised by Lord Rayleigh in 1881 to identify those with the classic types of colour blindness from 'normal' vision. Studies going back at least 30 years show it is fairly insensitive to the variation within the 'normal' population and many alternatives have been reported which claim to distinguish differences that would be otherwise missed.

It was in the 1980s that the evolving genetic techniques began to reveal the heterogeneity of the components that make up out photo sensitive sells in the retina. In particular it was noted that roughly half the population had one amino acid at position 180 on the L-optis (red pigment) and the other half a different one. This caused a small but significant shift in the absorption peak of the pigment, but less than that for the most common form of red/green colour blindness. Although anomaloscope studies generally failed to show a functional difference in colour sensitivity, other tests claim to do so. It means that about 50% of men have a slightly different red/green sensitivity to the other 50%.

I stressed men because the genetic information is carried on the X chromosome it means that men have a single copy of the gene and express one variant or the other. Women have two X-chromosomes and can have have two copies of one form, two copies of the other, or one of each. As a consequence the studies show that a higher proportion of women have slightly better colour sensitivity on average.

Beyond this it gets increasingly complicated. There is also a comparable amino acid substitution on the M-opsin (green pigment). One study found that the best performing individuals In tests had the genes for both variants on each opsin. That means that while men will normaly have one each or the blue green and red receptors a small proportion of women have a blue, two red green annd two red receptors. Other amino acid substution have been identified that probably contribute to the story.

It is quite clear that at the genetic and physiological level, men vary in their colour sensitivity, not only from each other but also distinctly from a proportion of women. However as Calvin and Paddy point out, other factors like "training" will also pray a role, as will aging and disease, so things are not clear cut. However if your wife/girlfriend says her handbag doesn't go with her shoes it's probably best not to argue.

David

PS. 18yo Highland Park juggles with 18yo Ardbeg and McCallan for top spot for me, but JW red label is more my budget.
I see orange, my wife sees red. I think shes right
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 06:05   #55
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Fun thread.

I don't think that having little experience with binoculars makes one a more objective evaluator. With more experience it may be possible to become more discerning and become more aware of differences between instruments. However, it is always a subjective call of how well the binocular suits a person and his or her pursuits. Perhaps someone new to the field may very well be pleased with a less expensive binocular to begin with. My own experience is that even if my first impression is good, it still takes a while in the field to determine what I really think about it.

It's very clear to me that the binoculars do not make the birder. There is someone who I see often, because he is out birding every day. He is a tremendous resource because of his experience and knowledge of local spots and what has been seen over many years. We got to talking one afternoon and he asked about my Maven 9x45 binocular so I asked if he'd like to use them for a while. His first comment was "Wow!, these are great, so sharp and the field is so wide." After he spent about ten minutes trying them out he told me they were really terrific. He apologetically asked if I'd tell him how much they cost. When i told him they were $1K new (I bought them used), he said, "That's what I was afraid of." I'm not 1/10th the birder he is, but I have the fancy binocular. I don't even remember what he was using. Like my old violin teacher told me, Heifetz would sound better on my violin than I would on his Strad.

Yet I do enjoy using a nice binocular, and among the binoculars I have bought and kept, my subjective assessment is that the nicer ones are more expensive. Am I getting what I paid for? I think so, or I would return it. The tougher question is whether it is worth going from $1,000 to $2,000 or more for the small difference in performance, and how discernible is that small difference to an individual. Again these are very subjective questions and matters of preference more than matters of fact.

Alan

P.S. Lagavulin and Bunnahabhain are my favorite single malts; I like the Islay whiskys. While longer aging is often better, and almost always more expensive, sometimes I think a whisky can lose some of its character. I like the 10 year old Talisker better than the 18, and the Bunnahabhain 25 is very nice, but too meek. I'm sure that more discerning Scotch drinkers would correct me .

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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 09:58   #56
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A fundamental difference between most birders and we contributors to the Binocular Forum is that we're interested in them as an artifact in themselves and have become fascinated and attached to the tools of the trade. This perhaps can become a little obsessive at times.
Some of the finest birders i know would not have one clue about some of the discussions here...astigmatism? pincushion? field curvature? transmission data?

Of course, if you're contemplating spending 1000 dollars, pounds, euros or whatever on something, i would become very interested indeed, and do all the research i could before shelling out. However, that is not in everyone's nature.
I've always suspected that the Alphas profit from the latter approach, as it's easier to just 'buy the best' (=most expensive) and just get on with it in a fairly non-critical way.
I guess that those who become into the subject may also be striving for something better, which of course contributes to the market, and keeps the designers, manufacturers, assemblers, importers etc. in business!
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 14:26   #57
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It's always perplexed me a bit about this site. Some complain about obsessiveness and excessive minutia discussion but this is birdforum ''binocular forum''. This is one of the only places on the net to discuss any of that, with like minded individuals.
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 14:34   #58
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I see orange, my wife sees red. I think shes right
Smart man!
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 14:37   #59
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Originally Posted by paddy7 View Post
So far, we seem to have (via Typo) the research that perhaps women have a better 'sense' for colour, and that men, chromosomically speaking, may have something of a split on their red/green perception;
Justabirdwatcher likes the Sighton for the few failings that could annoy him, but both wife and daughter rated it towards the least of their preferences;
daughter (younger eyes, no glasses) picked out the Zeiss for its resolution;
we also have the issue of ergonomics (both as an assumed female preference, but also important in the field);
regular, experienced birders who would rather work with their beaten-up and mid-range bins than invest in something new;
that a single annoyance (e.g. CA) can be a real deal-breaker;
that 4 Alpha bins can demonstrate varied colour-casts, without any being extreme enough to be off-putting;
my point that familiarity and 'speed of use' in the field is an important factor

Plus some other points that perhaps i should have mentioned.

My conclusion from this is that we are all blessed/cursed with a range of physical characteristics regarding our eyes - some gender-based, some down to the individual and probably age. While all of the binoculars brought into the discussion are all suited to their main purpose, what may induce a preference is not just the optical quality, or the colour rendition, and that familiarity plays an important part in field operation, whatever state an old set might be in. The fit, feel, weight, ease of view may well outweigh what a spec sheet may say about a much more expensive pair of bins - as for most, it's all about 'getting on the bird,' as quickly as possible.
And we're faced with all this in the threads that start 'Which is better......?'!!
I think it's becoming obvious that none of them/all of them are!!

My findings amongst birders i know is that - providing the manufacturer is consistent - they will become a Swaro guy, or a Zeiss girl or similar. They are used to the colour bias, used to the focus gearing, happy with the general feel, balance, armouring etc. and generally familiar with the brand. When they replace, they replace with the same make.
I'm quite ok with the fact i like the Zeiss approach; whenever i look through Swaros, it's a bit of a shock. It's great - but different. I may have become so used to the 'green cast' that i don't see it, which is why Swarovski always seem pale to me.
So to draw this back to the original post: it seems perfectly understandable, with all these wide-ranging circumstances, that not just the inexperienced might prefer a cheaper pair over an Alpha, but that some very experienced birders might too - and we can spend forever working out why that might be, but only they will know.....
Anyway - that whisky hardly touched the sides......and i think i've drained my post energy.....
I'd say that's an outstanding summary. And when I read that I think to myself, I'm sure glad I'm not responsible for designing binocluars for the marketplace! What a chore!

FWIW, my observations regarding color cast and other attributes of my Zeiss Conquests compared to Swaros are exactly the same as yours, and I have the same reaction every time I look through Swaros, which is why I've bought and sold two pairs of SLC's now. Some people think I'm out of my mind to prefer the view of the Conquests to the SLC's. Maybe I am. LOL
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 14:42   #60
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A fundamental difference between most birders and we contributors to the Binocular Forum is that we're interested in them as an artifact in themselves and have become fascinated and attached to the tools of the trade. This perhaps can become a little obsessive at times.
Some of the finest birders i know would not have one clue about some of the discussions here...astigmatism? pincushion? field curvature? transmission data?
I'd say that describes about 2/3 of the birders I know and most of the other 1/3 just bought what their birder friends were using because they had the money and could afford whatever they wanted. Of the hundreds of birders I meet a year, I doubt more than five of them could describe more than three features of their own binoculars.

I'm sure this is true in many activities that have the potential to involve expensive gear. Cycling, Archery, Air rifles, Sailing. You can do all of them for either very little money, or you can go broke doing them if you want.
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 14:54   #61
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Of the hundreds of birders I meet a year, I doubt more than five of them could describe more than three features of their own binoculars.

I'm sure this is true in many activities that have the potential to involve expensive gear. Cycling, Archery, Air rifles, Sailing. You can do all of them for either very little money, or you can go broke doing them if you want.
Or it could be some of us just can't justify thousands of dollars on binoculars even if we wanted them, no matter how badly we wanted them.

I've had to engage in my hobbies like "birding" (which is really 95% "bird photography") on a fairly tight budget, so the camera (such as it was) came first, binoculars second. Always sub-$100 binocs. They served me well, and let me "see things far away I would not have seen otherwise."

But I will admit, when I got a free pair of Nikon ProStaffs for my 15th year at work, that was a revelation! So clear, so sharp, so much better viewing area, etc.

Now if these other more expensive brands are even a leap beyond that then...I'm envious! But that doesn't change the fact that I'll likely never own a pair and if my Nikon's ever broke I'd probably go back to using my old pair of cheap binos.

Life is a balance. So maybe some of those birds with less expensive binocs are just making do with what they can afford, and likely don't even realize they are "making do" at all.

(And a side note...reading about all this optical wonder and wizardry is fascinating...)
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 18:11   #62
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So maybe some of those birds with less expensive binocs are just making do with what they can afford, and likely don't even realize they are "making do" at all.
Indeed Kevin and after decades of Zeisses, a Leica or two and a Swarovski, and then some more Zeisses it is only later in life, when I began reviewing, that I found some thoroughly enjoyable binos, much further down the price lists.

You don't have to own an alpha or anything like it to get enjoyment and education out of birding and nature observation.

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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 21:07   #63
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It's always perplexed me a bit about this site. Some complain about obsessiveness and excessive minutia discussion but this is birdforum ''binocular forum''. This is one of the only places on the net to discuss any of that, with like minded individuals.
And i think that is exactly what is happening here.....
Obsession has a major role in the world - it is what spawns PhDs and new knowledge. Birding, in my experience, is full of it, as probably are most other 'hobbies'. The guys who rent a private plane to go to Shetland for a Snowy Owl, those who are looking to crack 5000 on their world list, others who start as birders taking 'record shots' for i.d. purposes and become digiscopers, subsequently spending thousands on DSLRs and lenses etc.

I've always thought of obsession as being very worthwhile - if difficult to live with for partners! If it's in you, it's got to come out. Block up its outlet, and it'll pop up somewhere else.
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Old Thursday 13th December 2018, 21:34   #64
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Scotch drinkers, people swear they can tell minute differences, then in blind tests think the Johnny Walker Red is better than Highland Park 18 year. Perception is reality for many folks
Whisky is like sex, some is good the rest is better! JW ruled the world until those barstewards at Diago moved it from its ancestral home and killed a town!
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Old Friday 14th December 2018, 02:22   #65
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Or it could be some of us just can't justify thousands of dollars on binoculars even if we wanted them, no matter how badly we wanted them.

I've had to engage in my hobbies like "birding" (which is really 95% "bird photography") on a fairly tight budget, so the camera (such as it was) came first, binoculars second. Always sub-$100 binocs. They served me well, and let me "see things far away I would not have seen otherwise."

But I will admit, when I got a free pair of Nikon ProStaffs for my 15th year at work, that was a revelation! So clear, so sharp, so much better viewing area, etc.

Now if these other more expensive brands are even a leap beyond that then...I'm envious! But that doesn't change the fact that I'll likely never own a pair and if my Nikon's ever broke I'd probably go back to using my old pair of cheap binos.

Life is a balance. So maybe some of those birds with less expensive binocs are just making do with what they can afford, and likely don't even realize they are "making do" at all.

(And a side note...reading about all this optical wonder and wizardry is fascinating...)
I dont own any that I would consider to be prohibitively expensive, I do have a pair of Conquest HD's and a pair of Zen Ray Primes I won here on the forum along with some much less expensive glass. It may just be that I am hard to impress, but I havent found anything that are a "leap" ahead of a pair of Nikon Monarchs. Incremental improvements yes, but leaps, not really. My most used pair is a Leupold Yosemite 6X30. It's too easy to get caught up in looking at your binocular instead of looking through your binocular.
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Old Friday 14th December 2018, 03:47   #66
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But I will admit, when I got a free pair of Nikon ProStaffs for my 15th year at work, that was a revelation! So clear, so sharp, so much better viewing area, etc.
Just by the way you describe your binoculars we can already tell you are not one of us... we want to know which mag, which size, and most importantly which model. Since you are normal, I bet you couldn't even tell us without looking at them.
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Old Friday 14th December 2018, 04:40   #67
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Just by the way you describe your binoculars we can already tell you are not one of us... we want to know which mag, which size, and most importantly which model. Since you are normal, I bet you couldn't even tell us without looking at them.
You would be...quite correct.
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