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Best build quality of the three... (1 Viewer)

raptorbfl

Well-known member
Hi,

To all the people that own or have handled these 3 binoculars, which of these 3 is generally known to have the BEST build quality and will last many decades with normal care......
I have handled all 3, and the Kowa seems build like a tank, and the other 2 are VERY close, but others may feel differently.

1. Kowa Genesis 10.5 x 44
2. Nikon EDG 2 10 x 42
3 Leica Ultravid HD Plus 10 x 42.

Thanks
Michael
 
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Hi,

To all the people that own or have handled these 3 binoculars, which of these 3 is generally known to have the BEST build quality and will last many decades with normal care......
I have handled all 3, and the Kowa seems build like a tank, and the other 2 are VERY close, but others may feel differently.

1. Kowa Genesis 10.5 x 44
2. Nikon EDG 2 10 x 42
3 Leica Ultravid HD Plus 10 x 42.

Thanks
Michael
Without question, the Leica Ultravid HD Plus 10x42. The Leica Noctivid has the best build quality of any binocular I have ever seen.
 
All three are quite robust and I have no doubt would last many years to come. My impression if I had to pick one as best built would have been the EDG but I don't think any of the three have any corners cut. I would say if longevity is concerned it would be better to look at the companies history, warranty, and service. Nikon has a spotty history of service and support and may rediscontinue the EDG at any time. Kowa is not a big player in the binocular market however good their products may be. Leica has over 100 years in the sport optics world and will almost certainly still be around with parts and knowledge to help you if you encounter any problems years down the road. Based on that I would probably say Leica is the most likely to last a lifetime.
 
Hi,

To all the people that own or have handled these 3 binoculars, which of these 3 is generally known to have the BEST build quality and will last many decades with normal care......
I have handled all 3, and the Kowa seems build like a tank, and the other 2 are VERY close, but others may feel differently.

1. Kowa Genesis 10.5 x 44
2. Nikon EDG 2 10 x 42
3 Leica Ultravid HD Plus 10 x 42.

Thanks
Michael

Raptor,

For context I own and regularly use the Kowa 10.5, two EDG II and several HD+ models. I agree 100% with post #2 (now somehow #3) by has530 above for the reasons he gives.

Mike
 
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How long the binos will last under normal use is "durability" not "build quality" right? The EDG focuser is so much better than the others I would rate the build quality higher for that reason.
 
Several people I know who use it used EDG bins day in day out, travelling and birding with them have had problems with the armor… and as mentioned that is getting harder or will get harder to get serviced.
 
Hi,

To all the people that own or have handled these 3 binoculars, which of these 3 is generally known to have the BEST build quality and will last many decades with normal care......
I have handled all 3, and the Kowa seems build like a tank, and the other 2 are VERY close, but others may feel differently.

1. Kowa Genesis 10.5 x 44
2. Nikon EDG 2 10 x 42
3 Leica Ultravid HD Plus 10 x 42.

Thanks
Michael

Others will ALWAYS feel differently. And, as long as “BEST” is subjective across the board, each version dealing with different specifics of performance, style, and bragging rights, it will always be so. I would think that the main thing to remember is that the structurally weakest is going to outlast YOU.

You say so and so is “built like a tank.” That’s great. But how does that mesh with the thinking of those who feel anything weighing more than four postage stamps is prohibitive? And their are lots of those irrational people out there.

Just a thought; back in my hole now.

Bill
 
But the diopter compensation is worse, you have to include all components.

Andreas
But how often does one use the focuser versus setting the diopter? 1000 to 1? I did consider the diopter in my build quality assessment - how is that transparent plastic that Leica uses? Yuck :)

Full disclosure though: I've never tried a Kowa...you are dealing with a Nikon fanboy :D...it's probably fair to say all 3 of these have tank-like build quality
 
But how often does one use the focuser versus setting the diopter? 1000 to 1? I did consider the diopter in my build quality assessment...
It's not about how often you use the Diopter, it's about the fact that it can't be fixed, sits very close to the focuser and can sometimes turn when focusing!

I had this problem with an EDG 8x32 and 7x42, IMO this concept is a bad design.

I had my 8x32 at the Nikon service, after six months the problem came back, it would be my main reason not to buy an EDG anymore.

Andreas
 
I've checked my 2022 version 7x42 EDG a few times, every time it's right on "0" where I set it....so far, so good.....in general though I agree, I'm not a fan of the modern center-based diopter adjustment, especially when you have to pull something up to access it, I prefer the older dials on one eyepiece.

In my perfect binocular, the focuser, diopter, and IPD setting would all have visible graduated scales on them so I can look down and instantly see where they're set. This is the way my 80's and 90's Nikon E porros are, it seems like an elegant design, I"m not sure what happened along the way the last 30 years in bino design. They went off the rails at some point. All 3 settings are invisible in my late-model EDG and Swaro binos, the Zeiss SF still have the diopter scale showing but that's it.
 
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I've checked my 2023 version 7x42 EDG a few times, every time it's right on "0" where I set it....so far, so good.....in general though I agree, I'm not a fan of the modern center-based diopter adjustment, especially when you have to pull something up to access it, I prefer the older dials on one eyepiece.
The problem only appeared with my two EDG after 3-4 years of use, especially in warmer temperatures and when you put some pressure on the focus roller.
If you look closely at the construction, it's just unfortunate, the disc just sits too close to the focuser.
I'm also not saying that a turn is inevitable with every EDG at some point, but the probability is not insignificant, I think this construction is very error-prone.

Andreas
 
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The problem only appeared with my two EDG after 3-4 years of use, especially in warmer temperatures and when you put some pressure on the focus roller.
If you look closely at the construction, it's just unfortunate, the disc just sits too close to the focuser.
I'm also not saying that a turn is inevitable with every EDG at some point, but the probability is not insignificant, I think this construction is very error-prone.

Andreas
and I've noticed different cases put pressure on the focuser and turn the knob while you're walking around. Will have to keep an eye on this with the Nikon.

Again, can't help but notice how much better the diopter adjustment was on my prior 8x42 Premier LXL Nikons - a graduated scale exposed on one eyepiece with a locking feature. The bino company designers seem to follow each other like lemmings, once a new "feature" appears everybody feels like they need to have it.
 
Others will ALWAYS feel differently. And, as long as “BEST” is subjective across the board, each version dealing with different specifics of performance, style, and bragging rights, it will always be so. I would think that the main thing to remember is that the structurally weakest is going to outlast YOU.

You say so and so is “built like a tank.” That’s great. But how does that mesh with the thinking of those who feel anything weighing more than four postage stamps is prohibitive? And their are lots of those irrational people out there.

Just a thought; back in my hole now.

Bill
Bill, there are irrational people on Birdforum? I’m shocked 😂.
 
Hi,

To all the people that own or have handled these 3 binoculars, which of these 3 is generally known to have the BEST build quality and will last many decades with normal care......
I have handled all 3, and the Kowa seems build like a tank, and the other 2 are VERY close, but others may feel differently.

1. Kowa Genesis 10.5 x 44
2. Nikon EDG 2 10 x 42
3 Leica Ultravid HD Plus 10 x 42.

Thanks
Michael
Leica number 1. Everything else falls second and third.
 
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