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Glasses wearers - most comfortable 10x42 you have found? (1 Viewer)

Bentley03

Well-known member
United Kingdom
Hello everyone,

I'm very much struggling to find a really comfortable pair of 10x42 binoculars to use as my go to everyday bins and would really appreciate any help and some suggestions from anyone who is a glasses wearer and has found themselves some 10x42's which are super comfortable to use, have great optics and are just right for them. Anyone with experience of selling binoculars to glasses wearers too, who might see a trend towards a particular brand or, even better, a specific model.

I appear to be complicating matters by trying to find a pair with good optics which I can instantly/easily achieve perfect positioning and comfort with both of the pairs of glasses I wear regularly.

I haven't been able to test any binoculars extensively, only in the street outside the two good optics shops located within a reasonable distance of where I live (30 mins drive approx).

So far, the only 10x42 binoculars I've found which are truly comfortable and easy to use with both pairs of glasses are the now discontinued Nikon Monarch 7's. But, whilst I found them exceptionally easy to use, I took to them immediately, I wasn't 'wow'd' by the optics (not even an 'oooh'). On that basis, I wouldn't buy them.

The nearest I've come to finding an instrument which works with both of my pairs of glasses and which impressed me optically was the Hawke Frontier APO, but whilst I could usually find positioning which worked, I felt it was all a bit hit and miss for me.

Of all the 10x42 binoculars I've tested my biggest 'wow' was with the Opticron Aurora, but whilst they were comfortable and easy to use with one of my pairs of glasses, they were impossible to position easily with the other pair.

I would like to try the Kite Lynx HD+ and GPO Passion HD (although I suspect the eye relief of the latter may make it a non-starter), but I have no retailer for these brands anywhere near me.

I hadn't originally intended to buy a pair of 'alpha' binoculars, but if I do find that a Leica, Zeiss or Swarovski instrument is super comfortable to use with both of my pairs of glasses, I will happily invest in them. (I recently purchased and returned a pair of 10x32 EL's, because I just couldn't position them easily. This was mainly, I believe, due to the smaller than I am used to exit pupil, so I've abandoned looking at x32's).

Any thoughts or recommendations would be very much appreciated. Thank you! :)
 

Conndomat

United States of Europe
Europe
Hi Bentley,

are you short or farsighted?

Farsighted people like me usually need a slightly longer EP position, I need at least 16mm. to be able to observe reasonably decently.

In order not to name the very expensive Alpha binoculars, the Zeiss Conquest 10x42 would be an alternative, the glass has 18mm. EP. and I can use it without any problems, and it looks very good!
Ultimately you have to try it out yourself, of course, every face and every eyeglass is different, what fits me may not fit you, it is very individual.

Andreas
 
Hello everyone,

I'm very much struggling to find a really comfortable pair of 10x42 binoculars to use as my go to everyday bins and would really appreciate any help and some suggestions from anyone who is a glasses wearer and has found themselves some 10x42's which are super comfortable to use, have great optics and are just right for them. Anyone with experience of selling binoculars to glasses wearers too, who might see a trend towards a particular brand or, even better, a specific model.

I appear to be complicating matters by trying to find a pair with good optics which I can instantly/easily achieve perfect positioning and comfort with both of the pairs of glasses I wear regularly.

I haven't been able to test any binoculars extensively, only in the street outside the two good optics shops located within a reasonable distance of where I live (30 mins drive approx).

So far, the only 10x42 binoculars I've found which are truly comfortable and easy to use with both pairs of glasses are the now discontinued Nikon Monarch 7's. But, whilst I found them exceptionally easy to use, I took to them immediately, I wasn't 'wow'd' by the optics (not even an 'oooh'). On that basis, I wouldn't buy them.

The nearest I've come to finding an instrument which works with both of my pairs of glasses and which impressed me optically was the Hawke Frontier APO, but whilst I could usually find positioning which worked, I felt it was all a bit hit and miss for me.

Of all the 10x42 binoculars I've tested my biggest 'wow' was with the Opticron Aurora, but whilst they were comfortable and easy to use with one of my pairs of glasses, they were impossible to position easily with the other pair.

I would like to try the Kite Lynx HD+ and GPO Passion HD (although I suspect the eye relief of the latter may make it a non-starter), but I have no retailer for these brands anywhere near me.

I hadn't originally intended to buy a pair of 'alpha' binoculars, but if I do find that a Leica, Zeiss or Swarovski instrument is super comfortable to use with both of my pairs of glasses, I will happily invest in them. (I recently purchased and returned a pair of 10x32 EL's, because I just couldn't position them easily. This was mainly, I believe, due to the smaller than I am used to exit pupil, so I've abandoned looking at x32's).

Any thoughts or recommendations would be very much appreciated. Thank you! :)
Hello there

I have the GPO passion HD 10x42 and I wear glasses, the view through them is stunning, optically they are alpha level having compared them with other Alpha binos. Their low light performance is outstanding! ER is absolutely brilliant, very immersive views and easy to align your eyes with the exist pupil. I am very anal when it comes to ER and found these GPO HD perfect for me. I hope this helps.
 

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Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Bentley, as a glasses wearer, you need to make sure that there is sufficient ER to allow you to see the full field with easy eye positioning (ie. a bit of margin for error in alignment).

The best bins I have found for glasses wearers are Swarovski, either SV, or NL. They have a 'randpupille' design that I have found gives extra latitude for eye positioning compared to other brands. I generally need around 18mm or so ER (short-sighted script). I found the 10x32 SV to be remarkable for what it was, but that was not to my taste (ergonomics too small, but if I was after a small, lightweight 10x bin it would be well in the running). Another suitable one at the Alpha level is the Zeiss SF.

Half the price or less, but with most of the performance is the Nikon Monarch HG which also has the benefit of being very light. It is a great package and great value. It just had enough ER for me, but I'd prefer another mm to be more comfortable.

In comparison, I wasn't impressed with the Zeiss Conquest HD at all.

At the lower end of the budget scale, try the Vanguard Endeavour IV.

The best 10x I have ever used is the 10x50 SV - WoW view, but that is more weight than I would like to carry around.

Depth of field is pretty shallow with 10x so you mostly need a pretty good quality instrument, with good precise focusing, and good fit to you. You will need to try your potential candidates for purchase out and see which one fits you best and speaks to you.


Chosun 🙅‍♀️
 
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Bentley03

Well-known member
United Kingdom
Andreas, thank you for your suggestion, I will most definitely try the 10x42 Conquest. It's easy to forget Zeiss offer less premium bins than those they are best known for. Out of interest, which of the 'expensive' alphas do you find most comfortable to use? Oh, and unlike you, I am shortsighted, with relatively thin lenses, but my newer frames are quite thick and not particularly deep from top to bottom.

I have read several glowing reports regarding the GPO Passion HD's, so for sure I'd like to test them, although the 17mm eye relief is not especially generous, and I have the issue of getting my hands on some.

My dithering is undoubtedly irritating the retailers I have gone to so far, but I'm being picky because I will spend many hundreds of hours looking through whichever binoculars I eventually choose over the years ahead.

Chosun (your nickname makes me chuckle every time I see it on here), thank you very much for your very thoughtful reply and recommendations. I haven't come across a pair of Monarch HG's, but as I said in my first post, I found th Monarch 7's to be the easiest and most comfortable bins to use, of those I have tried, so trying the HG's makes a lot of sense. I did try the 10x32 SV, loved the view when I managed to get the positioning right, but in the end decided I would probably never be completely comfortable with them, I believe due to the precision of positioning needed with such a small (relative to what I'm used to) exit pupil. That said, it was a joy to hold such a beautiful instrument in my hands, and your other Swarovski comments have certainly caught my attention. I hadn't considered anything as large as a 10x50, I always use bins in the hands and not on a tripod, but although heavier, if the balance is right, the additional weight becomes less important... I think. I'll give that some thought.

Thank you very much so far, chaps! 🙂
 

dorubird

Well-known member
Romania
Another vote from me for the 10x42 Conquest HD. It has such great eye relief for glasses wearers. In the alpha class I can say that Zeiss SF 10x42 is at least as good as Conquest! I also wear glasses and use SF 10x42 with one step extended eyepiece cups! From Leica I think the only safe choice it is Noctivid 10x42 with great eye relief. Ultravid I think is not suitable for most glasses wearers, because they sacrificed the eye relief of the eyepieces for a very compact volume!
 

Conndomat

United States of Europe
Europe
Another vote from me for the 10x42 Conquest HD. It has such great eye relief for glasses wearers. In the alpha class I can say that Zeiss SF 10x42 is at least as good as Conquest! I also wear glasses and use SF 10x42 with one step extended eyepiece cups! From Leica I think the only safe choice it is Noctivid 10x42 with great eye relief. Ultravid I think is not suitable for most glasses wearers, because they sacrificed the eye relief of the eyepieces for a very compact volume!
Hello Bentley ... dorubird,

I agree, the Zeiss SF is just as good as the Conquest, the Noctivid is even a bit better, the Ultravid still works if you press it harder against the eyeglasses, but is significantly more uncomfortable than the above.

The insight behavior is a very important aspect, we eyeglasses users in particular have some disadvantages, so you should choose carefully.

Andreas
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Chosun (your nickname makes me chuckle every time I see it on here), thank you very much for your very thoughtful reply and recommendations.
Yep, well, blame my parents !

Strange comments about the
Zeiss SF 10x42 is at least as good as Conquest!

Is someone practising a comedy routine ?! 😳🙃😆

Maybe it is just in relation to the ER, coz otherwise the SF cr*ps all over the Conquest HD ! as do most of it's competitors imho (Each to their own, but I really didn't like the Conquest HD).

With all the various ER's listed, I tend to back out the eye ups by the same smidge (~1-2mm) on all of SV, NL, HT, SF, and HD. The MHG are left all the way down.

You should really try and get eyeballs on the Nikon MHG - it really is a fantastic package if it fits (should). It's so good I'd even buy it sight unseen provided there was a good returns policy just in case .....

Also do yourself a favour and have a look through the Swarovski 10x42 NL. Bear in mind though that it is ~3x more expensive than the Nikon MHG ! Be prepared - you may not be able to resist the urge to lighten the wallet !


Chosun 🙅‍♀️
 

Conndomat

United States of Europe
Europe
Is someone practising a comedy routine ?! 😳🙃😆

Maybe it is just in relation to the ER, coz otherwise the SF cr*ps all over the Conquest HD ! as do most of it's competitors imho (Each to their own, but I really didn't like the Conquest HD).

The people are so different, I couldn't do anything with the MHG, too many chromatic aberrations and in terms of sharpness it is noticeably inferior to the Conquest.
Visually, the Conquest is very close to FL or HT.

Andreas
 

dorubird

Well-known member
Romania
Maybe it is just in relation to the ER,
Yes, Conquest is similar to SF just in relation to the ER. I had in my mind in this discussion only the best glasses wearers binoculars, that's exactly what this is about in this thread.

But on the other hand, I also agree with what Conndomat wrote that Conquest it is an extraordinary binoculars very close optically and not far behind to FL and HT (in some respects even better: eg FOV). In Conquest view the resolution on the center and the brightness is very close to SF one. Extraordinary binoculars for 1000 euros!
 
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Tringa45

Well-known member
Europe
Hello Bentley,

I would second the recommendations for the Swarovski EL, either 10x42 or 10x50. My 10x42 is almost ten years old now and was a revelation compared to its predecessor, a Zeiss 10x42 FL and also compared to the original EL of the 1990s, which was a completely different optical design.

My correction is +2 dioptres (far-sighted) and I have just compared the view with glasses (eyecups fully retracted) and without glasses (fully extended). The view was very similar and a 2 mm retraction of the eyecups without glasses brought me to the verge of blackouts, so I think that you might need the 1st. stop of 2 mm extension with glasses for the most comfortable view.

A friend has the 10x50 EL and it is very similar to my 10x42. However, if the additional weight and relatively small additional cost are of no concern I think the 10x50 is to be preferred. Larger exit pupils almost always result in improved viewing comfort, I think because lateral eye movement means lateral pupil movement, which vignettes the binocular's exit pupils. Precise eye placement though is always important, regardless of exit pupil size, to avoid lateral CA.

The ELs, and to an even greater extent the NLs, exhibit optical qualities that go beyond the normal requirements for hand-held use and which first become apparent when the binocular is tripod-mounted. There is virtually no rectilinear distortion (a problem for those sensitive to rolling ball) and no field curvature or astigmatism, so there is no detectable loss in edge sharpness.

The latest 42 mm ELs, btw, have a close focus of 3,3 m as opposed to the 1,5 m of the older versions but I don't see a disadvantage there unless you also observe insects.

John
 

Conndomat

United States of Europe
Europe
Try the MHG 10X42 for yourself, not everyone is beleaguered with CA.
Andy, that's not the point, Chosun suggested the MHG and I suggested the Conquest, what's the problem?
This was about the ER situation when the T.O. asks If he had asked in the alpha segment, I would suggest another glass.
In addition, no one said that the Conquest is as good in terms of optics as an SF, here apples are also compared with pears, the Conquest is a conventional optical design so it is easier to compare with the FL, HT or Ultravids, that MHG is praised by Nikon as a flat field glass so you should compare it with the SF, SV, EDG, NL here it is imho clearly falling off, but here the opinions are just different.

Incidentally, in a survey in the forum about the most popular binoculars up to 1,000 dollars, the Conquest was slightly ahead of the MHG, so my suggestion for the Conquest should not be ridiculed, even if you don't like the glass itself that much.

Andreas
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Andy, that's not the point, Chosun suggested the MHG and I suggested the Conquest,

It's interesting, in terms of sharpness I found the two in the same ballpark. The SF, SV /NL appear noticeably and welcomely sharper to me - but at 2.5-3x the cost.

The MHG is not sharp right to the edge (like an SV /NL) , but neither quite is the SF (being somewhere in the middle). The Conquest HD with it's smaller Fov is not sharp to the edge either.

Perhaps the biggest difference for me, was the colour representation - ever so slight yellow tint to the bright MHG, whilst the Conquest HD was a duller rusty tea stained view - I didn't like it at all - I also didn't get on with the tunnel like view, or the naff ergonomics. By contrast, I found the MHG view to be expansive, and the ergonomics quite glorious.

CA, to which I am sensitive wasn't really an issue in either bin in the central third of the view. In fairness, the Conquest HD had such a dirty brown view that I think you might be flat out seeing the colours of CA !

It doesn't surprise me that different people see different things - it just goes to show how important the fit of the view for a person is.

You definitely have to give bins a good try before settling on one.



Chosun 🙅‍♀️
 

Bentley03

Well-known member
United Kingdom
Have spent the afternoon testing a number of instruments, two of which I would happily have purchased there and then, but they had no new ones of either model in stock, and there are a couple of others you guys have suggested on this thread which I'd very much like to try. Will post details later when I have a little more time...
 

Conndomat

United States of Europe
Europe
Perhaps the biggest difference for me, was the colour representation - ever so slight yellow tint to the bright MHG, whilst the Conquest HD was a duller rusty tea stained view - I didn't like it at all - I also didn't get on with the tunnel like view, or the naff ergonomics. By contrast, I found the MHG view to be expansive, and the ergonomics quite glorious.
Chosun 🙅‍♀️
Chosun, color perception in people is very different, that Conquest is a tad more muted than the FL but for me it can only be seen in direct comparison!

What I don't understand, why does the Conquest 10x42 have tunnel vision?
The glass is 115 / 1000m. the Swarovski EL 10x42 has "only" 112 / 1000m. and that is better then?
The EL 10x50 that you praise has only 115 / 1000m. why doesn't it have tunnel vision?

I think you're just trying to talk the glass worse than it really is, with a 10x with 115m thats around 62° AFOV. you can't talk about a tunnel.

Andreas
 
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Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Chosun, color perception in people is very different, that Conquest is a tad more muted than the FL but for me it can only be seen in direct comparison!

What I don't understand, why does the Conquest 10x42 have tunnel vision?
The glass is 115 / 1000m. the Swarovski EL 10x42 has "only" 112 / 1000m. and that is better then?
The EL 10x50 that you praise has only 115 / 1000m. why doesn't it have tunnel vision?

I think you're just trying to talk the glass worse than it really is, with a 10x with 115m thats around 62° AFOV. you can't talk about a tunnel.

Andreas
Andreas, nup, I was really not impressed by it.
The colour cast stands out quite clearly to me. (I spent many years in a professional capacity judging colour - so I'm quite tuned to small differences).

The 10x50 SV is a WoW view. It punches above it's Fov with a 3D-like effect, easy eye placement, and 50mm objective light gathering. I also find it very easy to hold steady.

The Nikon MHG, and Zeiss SF have 120m Fov - that's where a nice 10x view starts for me. The Swaro NL with 133m turns that up to 11.

The "tunnel-like" view of the Conquest HD is more to do with the black field surrounds for me - I just couldn't get them to disappear like on other bins. It's an optical fit thing. I also really don't like the feel in the hand. It's just all around a yuk experience for me. It is what it is. Ymmv and that's ok.

A 115m 10x would be 65.6° simple calcs. It definitely doesn't feel like that to me.

Some people like it, some don't. As a complete package I would put the Nikon MHG way in front. In fact, I can't think of what would ever make me pick up a Conquest again - sorry if that disses some people's favourite bin ! 😄



Chosun 🙅‍♀️
 
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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