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Any Kowa BD II XD 10x42 experience? (1 Viewer)


I’ve been keeping my eye out for a deal on a good mid range binocular. I was all set to pull the trigger on a pair of Conquest HD 8x32 that are coming in just above my budget. Then I came across a deal on the new BD II 10x42’s. They’re well within my budget (~35% cheaper than the Conquests) and I’m particularly drawn by the wide FOV.

I’ve read the optical report by Henry Link here and that has put me off somewhat, then again it may just have been a bad copy. I was hoping for someone may be able to offer some hands on experience in the real world? Or should I just push the budget out and go for the tried and tested Conquests?

I should say that magnification isn’t a huge factor for me. I’m more concerned with AFOV and good quality optics but I suppose 10x would be preferable if pushed.

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Well-known member
I tested the Kowa briefly a few months ago at a local optics fair and and I think it is excellent midrange glass that is fully competitive with (or better than) other Chinese made price contemporaries like the Vortex Viper, Meopta Meopro, or Zeiss Terra.

That said, the “sub alpha” Japanese made bins like the Conquest HD are better glass. And the 8x32 is arguably the best of the Conquest HD line, they are outstanding. If you polled the experienced users on this forum for their favorite 8x32 at $1000 or less, I’d be willing to bet the Conquest will be in nearly everyone’s top 3.

If you can afford the extra, I would spring for the Conquest, you’ll never regret spending a little extra for better glass if you’re a heavy user. You can always add a 10x42 later to complement it when you can afford to do so.


Thanks Eitan, I think my gut was telling me that anyway. I’m not a ‘heavy’ user so to speak. Rather I appreciate good optics and would like something all round to compliment what I already have, which is mainly scopes. This forum is my go to for info when it comes to binoculars!


missing the neotropics
I've not used that particular BDII, but have a different BDII (6,5x32). I like it, it's a good value, but it's still a $400 binocular. As well, I used an 8x42 Conquest HD very heavily for a few years in the field, perhaps 1000 days with it, and have used the 8x32 a fair bit here and there as well. The Conquests are a big step up from the BDII in my opinion and worth the upgrade. I'd take the 8x32 Conquest over the BDII in a heartbeat if you can afford it.


I notice the 6.5x32 seems to have quite a following. In any case your experience seems to match with the general consensus on the Conquest. I’ve been looking at price history and it seems they come fairly often in deal so I think I might just wait until then. Or at least I’ll hold out as long as I can!

Thanks for your input.

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