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Does the Head Rest help on the NL 8x42? (1 Viewer)

Loddar

Well-known member
A head rest should not be needed on any 8X binocular. You should be able to handhold a binocular in this size.

Jerry

If the head rest helps me to reduce shakes it is needed.
Handhold yes, but how long shakeless?
Even a stabilizer in such small binoculars like Canon 8 to 20 is very useful.
 

John A Roberts

Well-known member
Australia
The issue of whether one ‘needs’ assistance in holding an 8x binocular is a slippery one

Firstly, not all 8x binoculars are equal: at the extremes, an 8x20 verses an 8x56

Since this forum has a wide variety of readers, there will be individuals with various physical restrictions, either congenital or as the result of various insults (to use that great medical term)
e.g. see Stan’s comments in post #7

While I have no difficulty with the detail that I obtain holding an 8x42 binocular without any assistance, if I do make the use of an aid or rest the image does pleasingly reveal more detail

And an aid such as the FRP may either allow someone to see the same level of detail more easily, or for a longer period than otherwise, as Loddar indicates


John
 
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[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
The issue of whether one ‘needs’ assistance in holding an 8x binocular is a slippery one

Firstly, not all 8x binoculars are equal: at the extremes, an 8x20 verses an 8x56

Since this forum has a wide variety of readers, there will be individuals with various physical restrictions, either congenital or as the result of various insults (to use that great medical term)
e.g. see Stan’s comments in post #7

While I have no difficulty with the detail that I obtain holding an 8x42 binocular without any assistance, if I do make the use of an aid or rest the image does pleasingly reveal more detail

And an aid such as the FRP may either allow someone to see the same level of detail more easily, or for a longer period than otherwise, as Loddar indicates


John
Very true. Most people can probably hand hold at 8x but I notice I am shaking a bit and as you get older you shake more and Canon does make an 8x25 IS for that very reason. I think the need for a head rest varies from person to person and only you can be the judge if you need one.
 

NDhunter

Experienced observer
United States
The issue of whether one ‘needs’ assistance in holding an 8x binocular is a slippery one

Firstly, not all 8x binoculars are equal: at the extremes, an 8x20 verses an 8x56

Since this forum has a wide variety of readers, there will be individuals with various physical restrictions, either congenital or as the result of various insults (to use that great medical term)
e.g. see Stan’s comments in post #7

While I have no difficulty with the detail that I obtain holding an 8x42 binocular without any assistance, if I do make the use of an aid or rest the image does pleasingly reveal more detail

And an aid such as the FRP may either allow someone to see the same level of detail more easily, or for a longer period than otherwise, as Loddar indicates


John

John:

You are reaching out too far. A headrest is not needed in 8X, don't try to make it a want.

Jerry
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
Here are some interesting threads on resolution tests with binoculars handheld and on a tripod from Cloudy Nights and Bird Forum. The Swarovski head rest is not going to perform like a tripod although it will give some of the same benefits.

https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/...d-binocular-shaking-on-detectable-resolution/

https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/36040-binocular-resolution-testing-wusaf-charts/?p=500195

https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/3770-best-of-the-binocular-forum-start-here/page-2#entry244058

https://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=297776
 
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[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
Interesting post from Cloudy Nights on "Handheld-Binocular Efficiency." According to the equation the handheld performance (meaning what details become visible vs the unaided eye) of a 8x binocular versus a mounted binocular would be 71%!

"I don't know whether you are aware of the "Handheld-Binocular Efficiency" Index presented by Yoder / Vukobratovich in their "Field Guide to Binoculars and Scopes", p.53. They calculate it handheld Efficiency = Mounted Efficiency / (1+0.05 x magnification). They define "efficiency" as the ratio between what details become visible with an optical instrument vs. the unaided eye. If I grossly simplify that for our purposes, I would talk about "performance". So if my way to calculate (I am only lawyer, after all wink.gif ) is correct, the handheld performance for a 10x bino vs. a mounted 10x would be about 67%, the handheld performance of a 7x bino vs. a mounted 7x would be about 75%. So you "lose" about a third resp. A quarter of the binocular performance when you use these binos unmounted.What is fully in line with your findings is that the gain in mounting a bino drastically increases, the higher the magnification gets."

Pinac
 
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[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
Here is another post by the Prof. EdZ as they call him over at Cloudy Nights comparing the resolution of different smaller binoculars handheld and mounted. Even the 8x binoculars had a 40% drop in resolution.

"Table of USAF Chart Resolution For Small Binoculars
Values listed are actual line pairs resolution measured in arc seconds and apparent resolution in arc seconds times magnification.

First is normal power actual and apparent.
Second is boosted 6x power actual and apparent.
Third id normal power hand held actual and apparent.
Last is percent drop mounted res to handheld res.

USAF * apr * USAF * apr ** USAF * apr ** hh lower
res ** res ** re6x * re6x ** rehh * rehh ** by
7.2 ** 87 ** 2.6 ** 184 ** 10.8 ** 130 ** 50% ** Nikon SE 12x50
7.2 ** 87 ** 2.7 ** 194 ** 10.8 ** 130 ** 49% ** Nikon Action Extreme 12x50
8.6 ** 86 ** 3.0 ** 180 ** 13.6 ** 136 ** 58% ** Fujinon FMT-SX 10x70
8.6 ** 86 ** 4.8 ** 288 ** 12.9 ** 129 ** 50% ** Oberwerk Mariner 10x60
8.1 ** 81 ** 3.8 ** 230 ** 12.9 ** 129 ** 58% ** Fujinon FMT-SX 10x50
9.7 ** 97 ** 5.1 ** 307 ** 12.9 ** 129 ** 33% ** Leupold W R Mesa 10x50
9.1 ** 91 ** 3.2 ** 194 ** 12.9 ** 129 ** 41% ** Nikon Action Extreme 10x50
9.1 ** 91 ** 4.8 ** 288 ** 15.4 ** 154 ** 68% ** Pentax PCF WP 10x50
9.1 ** 91 ** 4.1 ** 243 ** 12.9 ** 129 ** 41% ** Orion Ultraview 10x50
8.6 ** 86 ** 4.3 ** 258 ** 12.1 ** 121 ** 41% ** Oberwerk 10x50
8.6 ** 86 ** 3.8 ** 230 ** 12.9 ** 129 ** 50% ** Garrett Genesis 10x50
9.7 ** 97 ** 5.7 ** 344 ** 12.9 ** 129 ** 33% ** Nikon Monarch ATB10x42 Roof
9.1 ** 91 ** 6.1 ** 365 ** 14.5 ** 145 ** 59% ** Pentax DCFHRII 10x42 Roof
10.3 * 82 ** 6.1 ** 292 ** 14.5 ** 116 ** 41% ** Bushnell Legend 8x42 Roof
10.8 * 87 ** 5.4 ** 259 ** 15.3 ** 122 ** 41% ** Garrett DCF 8x42 ApoRoof
10.8 * 90 ** 6.5 ** 321 ** 17.2 ** 143 ** 59% ** Oberwerk 8x42 Roof
10.8 * 86 ** 6.8 ** 325 ** 15.3 ** 122 ** 41% ** Oberwerk 8x56
11.5 * 92 ** 6.8 ** 327 ** 15.3 ** 122 ** 33% ** Garrett Classic 8x45
10.3 * 82 ** 4.6 ** 219 ** 14.5 ** 116 ** 41% ** Fujinon BFL 8x42
10.8 * 86 ** 4.8 ** 230 ** 16.2 ** 130 ** 50% ** Swift Ultralite 8x42
10.8 * 87 ** 5.1 ** 245 ** 14.5 ** 116 ** 34% ** Oberwerk Mariner 8x40
10.3 * 82 ** 3.8 ** 182 ** 15.3 ** 122 ** 49% ** Pentax PCF WP II 8x40
10.3 * 82 ** 5.4 ** 259 ** 15.3 ** 122 ** 49% ** Nikon Action Extreme 8x40
10.8 * 87 ** 6.8 ** 326 ** 15.3 ** 122 ** 41% ** Nikon Action VII 8x40
10.8 * 87 ** 5.7 ** 276 ** 15.4 ** 123 ** 42% ** Nikon SE 8x32
11.5 * 83 ** 4.3 ** 186 ** 15.3 ** 110 ** 33% ** Oberwerk Mariner 7x50
12.1 * 85 ** 7.7 ** 321 ** 17.2 ** 120 ** 42% ** Captain's Storm King 7x50
10.8 * 76 ** 4.8 ** 202 ** 15.3 ** 107 ** 41% ** William Optic 7x50 ED
12.1 * 85 ** 5.7 ** 241 ** 16.3 ** 114 ** 35% ** Captain's Helmsman 7x50"
 
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[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
What would be very interesting would be some comparisons of resolution with handheld vs. Swarovski head rest vs IS vs Tripod tests on 8x to 12x binoculars. Kimmo where are you?
 

Loud Green Man

Well-known member
Benefits or otherwise of the head rest aside and with no intention of being obtuse, if you do feel your viewing enjoyment would benefit from greater stability but deployment of a tripod is impracticable, get yourself an extended hiking pole or cut a hazel stick that is equal to your height and use this to steady your bins. I assure you it works and to such an extent you will not go back to unsupported use of binoculars.

I like the idea of measuring the degree of improved stability with a laser and feel confident it would reveal a jaw-dropping figure.

LGM
 

Hermann

Well-known member
Benefits or otherwise of the head rest aside and with no intention of being obtuse, if you do feel your viewing enjoyment would benefit from greater stability but deployment of a tripod is impracticable, get yourself an extended hiking pole or cut a hazel stick that is equal to your height and use this to steady your bins. I assure you it works and to such an extent you will not go back to unsupported use of binoculars.

Leaving IS binoculars aside for a moment, ANY support will help you stabilize your binoculars. Extended hiking poles work very well, as do hazel sticks and the like. A lightweight monopod also works very well indeed. I really like using an extended hiking pole myself for that purpose, especially in difficult terrain where I use a hiking pole anyway.

I'm sure ALL these solutions give you more stability than the headrest. They are not quite as flexible as the headrest though. And they invariably weigh more.

As an aside: Those who claim you don't "need" any support for 8x binoculars may want to try how great the difference in resolution between handheld vs. supported really is. Efficiency of a handheld 8x binocular is usually quoted as something like 60-65%, cf. e.g. Vubratovich 1989, Yoder/Vubratovich 2011 and Brunnckow et. al. 1944. That's NOT a lot and another argument for IS binoculars. Unfortunately those currently on the market aren't really ideal for a variety of reasons.

Hermann
 

Stanbo

Well-known member
A head rest should not be needed on any 8X binocular. You should be able to handhold a binocular in this size.

Jerry

Hi Jerry,

I'm afraid you are wrong. I can only use stabilized binoculars, as even though an unstabilised 7x is just usable it becomes unpleasant after a short time.

If you can use an 8x binocular without some shake then I envy you, but I don't believe that I am the only one with an age related tremor problem.

Regards

Stan
 

range

Well-known member
Leaving IS binoculars aside for a moment, ANY support will help you stabilize your binoculars. Extended hiking poles work very well, as do hazel sticks and the like. A lightweight monopod also works very well indeed. I really like using an extended hiking pole myself for that purpose, especially in difficult terrain where I use a hiking pole anyway.

I'm sure ALL these solutions give you more stability than the headrest. They are not quite as flexible as the headrest though. And they invariably weigh more.

As an aside: Those who claim you don't "need" any support for 8x binoculars may want to try how great the difference in resolution between handheld vs. supported really is. Efficiency of a handheld 8x binocular is usually quoted as something like 60-65%, cf. e.g. Vubratovich 1989, Yoder/Vubratovich 2011 and Brunnckow et. al. 1944. That's NOT a lot and another argument for IS binoculars. Unfortunately those currently on the market aren't really ideal for a variety of reasons.

Hermann

Somebody just doesn't need the extra resolution, which is very useful to resolve the fine details, but not so when a big picture is all he wants.
 

PeterPS

MEMBER
Regarding the FRP, the idea is not as new/innovative as one might think, see the attached pic of an old pair of Ross London 8x40.
 

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John A Roberts

Well-known member
Australia
Good find Peter!

And it's not a surprise that someone had a similar idea before: ‘everything old is new again’

It’s the Spectaross model, specifically designed for spectacle wearers. See the advert from a current eBay listing by eauctionmanagement
at: https://www.ebay.com/itm/1954-Ross-...ulars-Ad-Do-you-wear-spectacles-/402347691114

Simon Spiers states that it had '25 mm or so' of eye relief, and also see an image from him at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/binoculars/6916387127/

And it had sliding eyecups to accomodate the use of spectacles, as can be seen in two more images from the current eBay listing by marksmitchell
at: https://www.ebay.com/c/20007031689


John


And a final image that shows the rubber rest's shape in greater detail. It’s from 'a maico' and is attached to Simon’s post
 

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PeterPS

MEMBER
Thank you, John, your posts are always full of useful info.
Regarding the FRP, from the comments that I have seen so far, the head rest seems to be useful mainly for those people who suffer from significant hand tremor, but for most people it is of rather limited use, at least for NL 8x and 10x.
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
Thank you, John, your posts are always full of useful info.
Regarding the FRP, from the comments that I have seen so far, the head rest seems to be useful mainly for those people who suffer from significant hand tremor, but for most people it is of rather limited use, at least for NL 8x and 10x.
Peter. Thanks, for your opinion and feedback.
 

Stanbo

Well-known member
Thank you, John, your posts are always full of useful info.
Regarding the FRP, from the comments that I have seen so far, the head rest seems to be useful mainly for those people who suffer from significant hand tremor, but for most people it is of rather limited use, at least for NL 8x and 10x.

Peter,

You suggest that the FPR is mainly for people who suffer from significant hand tremor but you don't say on which scale "significant" is based.

The human arm and hand combination is a very poor steadying frame for binoculars and that applies to many, if not most people, not just those who have visible shake. My own is very minor visually, but is sufficient to make the use of non-stabilised binoculars, even down to 7x. of little value to me.

My work as a topographical surveyor meant that for much of my working life I used surveying and photogrammetry optics to obtain precise measurements. In the case of the former the instrument was mounted on a heavy, and I do mean heavy, usually wooden tripod and in the latter the instrument was set up on a ridgid bench. Without the stability that this provided, the accuracy of the resulting measurements would have been in doubt.

When I bought my first binoculars it was quite obvious that the image was not as stable at the one through my working optics. This was simply the fact that the human body could never provide the motion free support the my instrument support did. This is well demonstrated when you try to hold binoculars steady in a high wind or when your arm muscles ache after a long viewing session.

Image stabilised binoculars now provide me with an stable image close to the one I saw when working and at the other end of the scale my age related tremor has increased the shake to the point where non-stabilized binoculars are now unusable. In between those two ends of my scale there are many people with varying amounts of shake from whatever cause.

This brings me back to the NL FRP both on this thread and the Swarovski NL 8x42 First Impressions thread.

Comments are made on both threads about the FRP from it makes no difference to the view, to it does provide improved image stabilisation, so why the difference. Nobody seems to have made reference to the differing comments but there must be a reason for this anomaly.

I suggested in earlier post #7 that:

"It seems to me that asking someone else to describe the benefits of the Swarovski head brace would not be of much value unless you know the severity of that person's shake as well as your own".

I don't know how you measure it but I think it would help if you can find out if you have little or no shake. If you look through a stabilized binocular and there very little or no difference to the image stability when you press the stabilize button you have minimal shake. If that is the case you should see no difference between the NL with or without the FRP and therefore say that it doesn't work, but you could be wrong because you have no shake to carry out the test when the FRP is fitted. It would be helpful if someone who does not see any difference with the FRP fitted could carry out the above test. This would at least give some basis for some of the results. Piergiovanni, who made the no effect comment in #616 of Swarovski NL 8x42 First Impressions, would be an idea person to carry the test if he reads this.

At the other end of the argument, anyone who sees a difference with or without the FRP will at least achieve a correct answer but any comparison for another person could be compromised by varying degrees of shake between the two people. As is often said - try before you buy.

Stan
 

bockos

Well-known member
Peter,

You suggest that the FPR is mainly for people who suffer from significant hand tremor but you don't say on which scale "significant" is based.

The human arm and hand combination is a very poor steadying frame for binoculars and that applies to many, if not most people, not just those who have visible shake. My own is very minor visually, but is sufficient to make the use of non-stabilised binoculars, even down to 7x. of little value to me.

My work as a topographical surveyor meant that for much of my working life I used surveying and photogrammetry optics to obtain precise measurements. In the case of the former the instrument was mounted on a heavy, and I do mean heavy, usually wooden tripod and in the latter the instrument was set up on a ridgid bench. Without the stability that this provided, the accuracy of the resulting measurements would have been in doubt.

When I bought my first binoculars it was quite obvious that the image was not as stable at the one through my working optics. This was simply the fact that the human body could never provide the motion free support the my instrument support did. This is well demonstrated when you try to hold binoculars steady in a high wind or when your arm muscles ache after a long viewing session.

Image stabilised binoculars now provide me with an stable image close to the one I saw when working and at the other end of the scale my age related tremor has increased the shake to the point where non-stabilized binoculars are now unusable. In between those two ends of my scale there are many people with varying amounts of shake from whatever cause.

This brings me back to the NL FRP both on this thread and the Swarovski NL 8x42 First Impressions thread.

Comments are made on both threads about the FRP from it makes no difference to the view, to it does provide improved image stabilisation, so why the difference. Nobody seems to have made reference to the differing comments but there must be a reason for this anomaly.

I suggested in earlier post #7 that:

"It seems to me that asking someone else to describe the benefits of the Swarovski head brace would not be of much value unless you know the severity of that person's shake as well as your own".

I don't know how you measure it but I think it would help if you can find out if you have little or no shake. If you look through a stabilized binocular and there very little or no difference to the image stability when you press the stabilize button you have minimal shake. If that is the case you should see no difference between the NL with or without the FRP and therefore say that it doesn't work, but you could be wrong because you have no shake to carry out the test when the FRP is fitted. It would be helpful if someone who does not see any difference with the FRP fitted could carry out the above test. This would at least give some basis for some of the results. Piergiovanni, who made the no effect comment in #616 of Swarovski NL 8x42 First Impressions, would be an idea person to carry the test if he reads this.

At the other end of the argument, anyone who sees a difference with or without the FRP will at least achieve a correct answer but any comparison for another person could be compromised by varying degrees of shake between the two people. As is often said - try before you buy.

Stan

I do fitness myself and I saw a small difference in NL with FRP and without FRP ... even for me 10x42NL with FRP is more stable than 8x42NL without FRP, also than 10x50EL Fieldpro. I guess everyone should see a small difference with FRP and without FRP ... because in both cases he uses his two hands with the same force ... it makes sense for FRP to be more stable even at 8x ... it could be a little ..but it's better..And FRP is not that expensive ..
Stefan.
 
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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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