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ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

Car binos - what are your criteria? (1 Viewer)

yarrellii

Well-known member
Supporter
No car is my criterium.
Well, I guess we can broaden the scope of this thread to "pannier binos"/fietstas kijkers ;)

Too much "faffing about" as out British cousins so charmingly put it.
"Birdwatching". When I lived in the UK it was called "birdwatching", but I might have to check the dictionary again to see if they've changed the term in question. And I can never have too much of it.

Have you thought about using a 50 mm scope for this purpose? I did it once on a car trip through New Mexico, though not primarily birding. Used both a window mount and an ultra compact tripod. Worked quite nicely. Paired with a 10x32 bin. The bulk and weight were never an issue and I like light and compact for travel.
Sounds like a great idea, small and compact (I have an MM4 60 which I love for its quality/size/weight ratio, and I can only imagine the 50 mm version must be even more incredible). In my case, my comment had more to do with cost. I've been really curious about the Kowa TSN 501, at 400 g and x20-40 is just so tempting, but I simply cannot justify the cost for it being tossed in the trunk, hence my comment about finding a really cheap device somewhere, regardless of its characteristics, the price would be the main criterium there :)
 

oldfortyfive

Well-known member
I normally leave a pair in each of my vehicles. Not had any damaged as a result. Just don't don't leave them in the sun and best if they are out of sight. My bino's are often worth more than the car they are in :oops: and I don't loose any sleep over it.
 

yarrellii

Well-known member
Supporter
It would be but a mere shadow of itself.
Yes... members of a forum sharing ideas, opinions and experiences about the subject of the forum: inconceivable. What will be next? Members of a cooking forum sharing recipes and cooking tips? Someone must definitely stop all that faffing about :p

To stay on topic: here are the lovely little Kowa YF 8x30 that have lived on my glovebox for the last couple of years and have given me many indelible and unique moments of birdwatching, making possible watching birds (and other creatures) that I would have otherwise missed. As a matter of fact, for this very reason they're one of the binoculars I'm more fond of.

Captura de pantalla 2021-06-24 a las 12.22.42.png

They're small enough to fit inside a smallish glovebox, inexpensive, great performers for the price, and have proven dependable and reliable beyond what was expected.
 

Foss

Well-known member
An inexpensive monocular (vntg B&L 6x30 WA from half a bin w/chipped prism) resides full time in glove box. The good stuff rides in my center console but comes out a night, every night, due to lesson learned the hard way.
 

jmulvey

Member
I used to keep a pair of cheap nikon 10x56 in the car and used them very rarely. then I started watching, and seeking out birds during the pandemic. I bought a nicer pair of nikons (monarch 5 8x42) but would never leave them in the car. Now i've gone completely nuts and bought swarovski Els for my primary use and leave the monarchs in the car. Yesterday I stopped by a park for lunch and took a walk with my monarch 5s and started wondering if i need to upgrade my car binos, but, upgrading would likely conflict with two of my apparent criteria, a) inexpensive, b) lower tier and less-loved than my primary.

What are your criteria for binos you leave in the car, i.e., just in case you see something cool or decide to take an unplanned look-see?
I vote to consider keeping the monarch in the car. It’s lightweight, durable, you know you like them, probably fit in your glove box and it has a good warranty if they get bumped around. Put them in a lightweight case that does not say “Nikon”. I keep a lower price small pair in my car. It is hard to enjoy binoculars when you really need them if you do not have any with you.
 

Aotus

Well-known member
United States
I vote to consider keeping the monarch in the car. It’s lightweight, durable, you know you like them, probably fit in your glove box and it has a good warranty if they get bumped around. Put them in a lightweight case that does not say “Nikon”. I keep a lower price small pair in my car. It is hard to enjoy binoculars when you really need them if you do not have any with you.
I'm doing like you say, actually, though keeping the original nikon bag. It fits nicely in the seatback pocket and it isn't eye-catching as long as I keep the strap tucked in. My problem now is that I find the monarch 5 fov very claustrophobic and I am considering upgrading to EITHER a higher-magnification with large objective for looking at birds from my seat (i.e., prioritizing distance viewing and low-light performance), OR, getting a 8x42 or 8x30 with a wider fov than the nikons for the car so that I'm ready for unexpected little walks when I didn't bring my primary pair.
 

albie...

Well-known member
I am thinking about getting a bin for my vehicle but it might be too nice for the glove box . I found what looks to be a very nice condition leica ultravid 8x20 .
The person is asking $600 canadian ($483 american) . I'm not sure what it normally goes for used so I am stalling .
 

jring

Well-known member
I am thinking about getting a bin for my vehicle but it might be too nice for the glove box . I found what looks to be a very nice condition leica ultravid 8x20 .
The person is asking $600 canadian ($483 american) . I'm not sure what it normally goes for used so I am stalling .

Hi,

600 canadian for an Ultravid 8x20 seems like a very good deal. Maybe a bit too good to be true if this is not cash and carry...

They usually go for 650 to 750 us on fleabay... are you shure those are ultravid and not trinovid?

PS: as for glove box - I certainly would not put them there... that red dot is very recognizable...

Joachim
 

edwincjones

Well-known member
disposable in case of loss from theft or damage
smaller to fit in hidden space
wide FOV

currently my kowa 6x.5x32 BD11s- which seem ideal,
has been papillios or just least favorite pair in my collection

edj
 

albie...

Well-known member
"Hi,

600 canadian for an Ultravid 8x20 seems like a very good deal. Maybe a bit too good to be true if this is not cash and carry...

They usually go for 650 to 750 us on fleabay... are you shure those are ultravid and not trinovid?

PS: as for glove box - I certainly would not put them there... that red dot is very recognizable...

Joachim"

Hello Joachim.
They look like Ultravids in very good shape and they are 15 minutes away from where I live . So at least I can inspect and try them out.
Here is a pic from the ad .
 

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jring

Well-known member
Hello Joachim.
They look like Ultravids in very good shape and they are 15 minutes away from where I live . So at least I can inspect and try them out.
Here is a pic from the ad .

Hi,

in that case by all means try them and if you buy, congratulations to a great deal!

Joachim
 

dries1

Member
Hi,

rugged enough so it will manage vibration and extreme heat, cheap enough so I don't care if they're nicked and more importantly, nobody will feel tempted to cut open my CV soft-top should they ever be visible...

My choice is a 50€ surplus pair of Hensoldt DF 8x30...

Joachim
The DF the best car binocular, I used mine overseas in very hostile hot environments. It is tougher than anything made commercially today by a mile.
 

jring

Well-known member
The DF the best car binocular, I used mine overseas in very hostile hot environments. It is tougher than anything made commercially today by a mile.

Hi,

yeah, probably only topped by the CZF EDF 7x40, which can be used to drive nails into the wall...
But it's on the other hand is kinda collectible and not cheap... and the view is quite yellow for the east german military examples... not so for the Docter followups...

Joachim
 

yarrellii

Well-known member
Supporter
I've been interested in the Hensoldt for a while (while the limiting factor for me has been the central focus), and I see they come up regularly in German sites, but while there are some cheap offers, I've seen them going for crazy prices like 500 €, even 850 € for a Fero D16 :oops:
 

Super Dave

Well-known member
Hi, I've been keeping some stabilized 10x25 Nikons in my car here in Hawaii. Prior to that I had a pair of Leupolds. I prefer something that doesn't take up a lot of space in the center console. I was initially worried about the heat causing issues but it has not been a problem.
 
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Colombia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Colombia

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