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Kowa 883 vs Swaro ATS80HD (1 Viewer)

pimpelmees

Well-known member
Even if the kowa is better I will take always the Swarovski because of the better service after… specially in Europe where kowa is not really on the sale level of service as Leica en Swarovski for sure
 

SUPPRESSOR

Well-known member
England
Even if the kowa is better I will take always the Swarovski because of the better service after… specially in Europe where kowa is not really on the sale level of service as Leica en Swarovski for sure
Can't speak for Europe ,but ,here in England buy a new Kowa then register it for an extended guarantee period 15,years in all .In the unlikely event anything goes wrong send it to a Kowa main dealer and it will get sorted.
The Kowa 880 series spotting scopes are extremely well put together and plenty tough enough with the neoprene stay-on -case installed.
No scope likes to be dropped rubber armoured or otherwise.
Pete.
 

rpg51

Well-known member
I am reading this thread with great interest as I ponder my next optics purchase. These two scopes are in my range and I have been reading a lot about them. The higher priced swaro stuff is too rich for my blood. But, this price range, and lower, is doable for me.

I have owned a scope in the past - nealy 20 years ago - a Nikon Fieldscope III I believe it was. I did not use it all that much and so I sold it. But, I am approaching retirement and god willing I plan to do a LOT more birding and wildlife observation. I am used to the view through alpha binos. Still, my scope will never get as much use as my binos and I am pondering whether I could save a bit of money and get a scope that I would be satisfied with. Once you become accustomed to the view through really good glass it is hard to drop back. That is what worries me, because I am looking through Swaro NL binos every day.

Do you folks know of a scope priced less than the two referenced in this thread that would give a view that is close to these alpha scopes? How close? Am I going to end up unhappy if I drop back a price point to the $1K - $1.5 K US range? My use for this next purchase will be mostly birding on the shore, over mud flats, some big lake country, that sort of thing. I might get into some digi scope stuff but not sure on that.

How is the Kowa customer service/warranty in the US? If there is a problem do they take care of you the way Swaro does?
 
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Bill Atwood

Registered User
Supporter
United States
The Nikon Monarch 20-60x82 ED, currently at $1,600 gets mostly good marks. Check out the Nikon scope forums here.

Meopta is a manufacturer whose products aren't in widespread use, but generally gets good reviews for product quality and service. The Meopta Meopro 20-60x80 HD is currently $1,389 at B&H where it gets positive reviews. I haven't had a chance to view the Meopro, but I DO have the Meopta S2 which I picked over the Swaro ATS95 and Kowa 883. The S2 can be had for $2,436 at Sport Optics (with discount code).

Kowa's doesn't get the service rep Swaro does. I don't recall hearing much about it. There's probably some info in the Kowa section here.

Swaro is pretty much the platinum standard for service. Assuming a reliable seller, I'm just as confident purchasing a used Swaro product as I am a new one. Swaro definitely makes it difficult to leave their universe.
 

rpg51

Well-known member
Thanks - have you had a chance to look thru the Nikon or the Meopta? I find there are many reviews of various optics but not many where the optic being reviewed is compared to another specific optic. Makes it hard to know.

Sounds like you prefer that Meopta S2 over the Kowa and Swaro. I'll have to take a look. What was it that caused you to pick the Meopta? Other than price.
 

Bill Atwood

Registered User
Supporter
United States
I've no experience with the Nikon or Meopro.

I prefer the 20-70x S2 over the 30-70x ATX95 and 25-60x 883 mainly for ergonomics, it's not quite as good optically as the other 2, but it's damn close. The ATX is a big beast, I never liked the ergos and could never quite get used to using it. Looking back, the very large diameter of the ocular end played a large part in my negative experience. Probably would pick the Kowa if it went to 70x w/o the extender, or if the FOV with the extender was larger.
 

rpg51

Well-known member
I have the Mavin demo coming. But, based on all my reading, and no actual personal viewing, I think i am going to end up with the Kowa 883. Still thinking. First world problems for sure. Lets see, should i get the Swaro or the Kowa? :)
 

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