If you go to the trouble of interviewing service centres for high end products, maybe some mildly technical questions might be on order, eg, how resistant which of their products are to daily abuse -will they stand being dropped or cleaned with a sweater (it always happens) , are the coatings resistant to pollution or do they tarnish, does the gas filling last or leak over the years (how many?) , do they need cleaning for internal haze periodically, what tools and process do they use to recollimate, and also how they deal with items that get sent back immediately by the customers for correction. The last is of interest, seeing how many people complain here of dust inside barrels, internal reflections, hazing up etc.
I understand why you ask these questions Edmund and I might be able to obtain answers for some of them. However I suspect that some will not be answered in the way that you wish. For example service departments are not allowed to make statements about binocular performance. This is the remit of marketing departments in all companies.
For example: will the binos survive a fall? This depends on whether the fall is a few centimetres onto a cushion or from the top of the Tour Eiffel onto the pavement or, more realistically from half a metre onto soft mud or 2 metres onto rock. Even if you define the circumstances of the fall the outcome will depend on the position of the bino as it hits the surface and whether the fall was only propelled by gravity or if the bino had more speed behind the fall by for example swinging from the neck strap. It is impossible to answer this question.
Is is OK to clean with a sweater? I guess you mean the ocular and objective lenses and the only possible answer is no. You need to ensure there is no dust or dirt or other particles on the lens and on the cloth being used to clean the lens and with a sweater this cannot be guaranteed.
What tools and processes are use for collimation? This is regarded as confidential by most brands.
What to do if a member receives a new binocular and there is something wrong such as particles inside. The member should return these to the dealer and ask for binocular without this problem.
As for 'are the coatings resistant to pollution or do they tarnish, does the gas filling last or leak over the years (how many?) , do they need cleaning for internal haze periodically'. I will see if I can get answers to these questions and comments on the others.
Thanks for the interview. I suspect that Zeiss USA would have a somewhat different fashion.
I was intrigued by the major activities of Zeiss UK: cinema and I suppose professional video lenses and electron microscopes which I suppose are bespoke. I have known Zeiss for microscopes, for photography and for sports optics. Currently, they seem to have fallen behind in consumer photography.
Happy bird watching,
Thank you for your response which has given me much to think about. I will bear your comments in mind when planning my next interviews at Bird Fair.
I have sent your questions to a person I think is in a good position to comment and we will see what happens.
Regard the dropping of binoculars, I am pretty sure there are published procedures to control standardised 'drop tests' for consistency and it could be that bino brands perform these. I have asked about this.