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Canon 8x32WP still worth getting? (1 Viewer)

Binocollector

Well-known member
Germany
In one of my usual ebay searches for used binos I stumbled across the Canon 8x32WP. I think it has some interesting specs but I read very mixed reviews online. Some said, "great for the price", "very sharp", "sturdy", etc. Others said it's way too dim.
I think I rarely read so mixed reviews and information about some details doesn't exist -- like, does it have silver or dielectric coatings? Does it have phase coatings?
Apart from that I like the field flattener oculars (some say an Erfle design) that they seem to have, the rubber fold-down eyecups (I actually think those are almost always more comfy than twist-up rubberized metal eyecups), the external focusing (less can go wrong).
But the one I found on German ebay is 170€ and I am not sure a binocular that is rubberized and about 20 yrs old (we probably all have read the problems with some of Canons rubber armor on the IS models) is still worth that much considering I could get something like a Svbony SV202 ED or anything along those lines for less.
Still, I like the design and would love to try them.
Anybody here own one? And if so, how do you like it? Would it be suitable for birding? Because that is the main purpose I wanted to get it for. But I wonder about the speed of the focuser because of the "porro-like" design.
Questions upon questions ....
 

BKoh

Well-known member
Singapore
Try them, if you don't like them, sell them. If you didn't overpay you should recover almost all your costs. For birding, personally I would want:

1. Close focus of 2m or less
2. Fast focus gearing
3. Waterproof
4. Big FOV (8° for 8x, 6.5° for 10x)

Porros usually have poor close focus and are seldom waterproof due to the focus mechanism. YMMV.
 

Gijs van Ginkel

Well-known member
We investigated the CANON 8X32 GA:
  • weight 742 g
  • close focus 4,7 m
-FOV 131m/1000m
  • eye relief 14 mm
  • light transmission: 53,8% at 500nm, 60,9% at 550 nm.
Not a very impressive binocular.
Gijs van Ginkel
 

Binocollector

Well-known member
Germany
Thanks for all the help, guys. I guess nobody here has that particular model (or didn't see my post) but it arrived today and I am pretty pleased. Especially the build quality seems very nice. It feels nice in the hands and handles perfectly. Also the focuser is pretty quick which was my biggest concern. The transmission might not look like 90%, sure, but it still seems pretty bright. Good thing that the eyes don't perceive brightness in a linear fashion, I guess.
I did compare it with my Celestron Ultima 8x32 porro and the Celestron seems only the tiniest bit brighter. I will not try to guess any numbers here and I haven't bought it as a "low light" bino -- I got my Kite Cervus 8x56 for that purpose. I wanted a robust, small and lightweight birding bino and I think for that purpose it is pretty good. Optically -- considering sharpness in the center and sharpness edge-to-edge they seem right up there with my 500€ Lux HR or similarly priced binoculars from my collection. The field flatteners seem to to their job. CA is kept under control very nicely. I have to look for it at the very edge of the FoV to even see some. Inside it is squeaky clean, nicely baffled, perfectly round exit pupil with only a very small amount of stray light. The diopter is ratcheting which makes it easy to adjust and it stays put once adjusted.
My only complaint -- they smell slightly of cigarette smoke but not to an amount that it might get annoying while using them outside. And from experience that smell will dissipate after a while.
So all in all -- very happy with it even though I probably slightly overpaid. But when comparing what I'd have to pay for a current Made in Japan bino -- I think it was still okay. Even comparing prices on ebay worldwide -- there were not many that were cheaper and most were in worse condition than the one I got.
Some pics:
8djsm.jpg

vujnq.jpg

3akum.jpg

cbjha.jpg




The pix were taken through the window and the window is 50 years old. I also didn't use a tripod or anything.
u2j33.jpg

bck91.jpg

40k8h.jpg

n7kn5.jpg
 

yarrellii

Well-known member
Supporter
I hadn't seen this thread before. By pure coincidence a fellow birder let me try his Canon 8x32 WP last weekend (I've seen them appearing in the 2nd hand market and the sturdy body, external focus and quirky looks always catched my attention). To be honest, I could only try them for a few minutes, but my recollection is that:
  • Oh, these feel pretty bulky/heavy for a 8x32. I don't know the weight figure, but the rubber armour seemed overbuilt, it ended up in a lovely triangular shape at the objective end (a little like the details in the Mazda with Wankel rotary engine).
  • The view seemed indeed a bit dim compared with contemporary binoculars like the 8x32 Vortex Diamondback HD.
  • The worst bit is that close focus didn't seem close at all (again, it was a very short test, I couldn't take any measurements).

On the plus side: my friend is a professional naturalist, ranger, certified ringer and has used the Canon for 20 years, throwing at them more than most regular people would, so I guess that, if you don't re-sell them, you could probably pass them on to your grandchildren in great condition. Stunning build quality.

Let us know how you get on with them, it's one of those oldie-quirky looking devices I just can't help falling for, like an old boxy Volvo 240.
 

Binocollector

Well-known member
Germany
After some use, I still like it quite a bit. Since I got a lot of much heavier binos, I'm fine with the weight. It seems a bit overengineered which I like. Yes, it's a tiny bit dimmer than others but not to an extent that it bothers me. I like the sharp views, almost reminds me of my Russian binos. And the close focus is around 3 m or slightly less. More than good enough for watching the birds at the feeders in the garden. If I come any closer, they'll fly off.
I wonder if some Vinylex might help keep the armor in good shape. On mine the armor looks very good for a 20 year old bino.
 

yarrellii

Well-known member
Supporter
Really interesting. 3 m close focus is good enough for me for general birding, so it could have just been an impression after looking at some nearby bushes. And yes, the overall feeling is that of a really sturdy and solid pair of binocular, Japanese engineering and quality at its best. It's a pity that Canon abandoned the general "conventional" (non-IS) binocular market, with their expertise and build quality, I wonder what they could come up with these days. I have a Canon IS and the feeling in the hands seems worlds apart from the 8x32 WP, they're plasticky and look like they could get easily damaged (although, truth be told, there are many accounts of their longevity here in BF, which again speaks about Canon QC). Enjoy them!!!
 

Binocollector

Well-known member
Germany
Thanks! I'm certainly already enjoying them. I'm a fan of rubber eye cups. Many of the twist-up style ones don't seem to agree with my face.
True, the IS binos feel a bit plasticky but I guess with a magnesium body they'd weigh a ton. I bought mine mainly for astronomy but use it for birding too.
 

BKoh

Well-known member
Singapore
Really interesting. 3 m close focus is good enough for me for general birding, so it could have just been an impression after looking at some nearby bushes. And yes, the overall feeling is that of a really sturdy and solid pair of binocular, Japanese engineering and quality at its best. It's a pity that Canon abandoned the general "conventional" (non-IS) binocular market, with their expertise and build quality, I wonder what they could come up with these days. I have a Canon IS and the feeling in the hands seems worlds apart from the 8x32 WP, they're plasticky and look like they could get easily damaged (although, truth be told, there are many accounts of their longevity here in BF, which again speaks about Canon QC). Enjoy them!!!
The official specs list:
Weight 726g
Close focus 5m

I would personally not want to gamble that any given unit I bought would focus to 3m.
 

Binocollector

Well-known member
Germany
That is more or less a purely theoretical problem as the bino is not produced anymore and I think it hasn't been in production for around 20 years. Besides, there probably are better ones out there for the price I paid for mine but it was a combination of different factors that made me want to get it. The mixture between roof prism design and external focusing in combination with rubber eyecups (which I prefer) and the fact that Canon was THE ONLY bino manufacturer that passed the newest tests of "Stiftung Warentest", when it comes to toxic chemicals, etc in the binos rubber armor or straps. Every other company failed, including Zeiss, Leica and Swaro.
I also simply liked the design and I wanted the field flattener lenses (big fan of those). And further considering that it is made in Japan I guess that justified the price of roughly 170€. Optically I think it is very good and honestly -- in bright daylight I don't see any "dimness" at all. But like I said, I got other binos for twilight.

I guess it depends a bit on the personal capacity of the eyes to adjust but mine definitely focuses much closer than 5m -- even closer than 3. More like 2.5m. Just measured it with my trusty Stanley "FATMAX" 5m tape measure. My modern DDoptics Lux HR manages maybe 50cm less focusing distance, at which point however one might have to readjust IPD which is not the case with the Canon at closest focusing range.
Weight is 730gr.
For super close stuff a Pentax Papilio might be a better choice though.
 

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