• BirdForum is the net's largest birding community dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE!

    Register for an account to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

looking for 8x30/32 roof, < 450 gram, no plastic, good in low light (1 Viewer)

ruud5

Active member
Netherlands
Hi all,

This is my first writing on this forum. I have no experience with binoculars. So it will be the first one that I shall buy. I am 68 years old. I shall use the binocular for walking around the beach, fishing, looking at tennis matches and bird watching. The most important use shall be walking around the beach and bird watching. Early in the morning and when the evening starts.

I want 1 binocular! (I understand that it is better to get one for all the different situations..)

It must be light! And I like a good build quality (I do'nt like plastic..). I understand that is difficult.

I found de nikon Monarch 8x30 and it loooks good qua dimensions and weight but I do'nt like the plastis

After searching on the internet and bidforum I came on the Opticron Traveller 8x 32 mg.

I would be very glad about some advice.

regards, Ruud
 

yarrellii

Well-known member
Supporter
Hoi Ruud, and a warm welcome to the forum. I'm sure you'll find good advice here.
A couple of ideas/comments regarding your description.

First: size. You state that weight is important, hence a compact binocular like a 8x30-32, that makes all the sense. However, you then say that your main watching times will be early in the day and when the evening starts. If I understand it correctly, dawn and dusk (or at leas early morning and dusk), and there a binocular with a larger objective may give a better perfomance). Just an idea. I know, I know this collides with your idea of a light binocular.

Materials. I understand you want something that is "well made". However, plastic and metal are somehow vague terms when it comes to binoculars. One of the toughest and most respected binoculars of all time, the Zeiss FL series, is made of plastic (well, I'm sure it has a specific name, but just to keep it short and to the point). While it is true that as you go up the price ladder you usually find a refinement in materials: plastic, aluminium, magnesium... it is also true that there are very good devices made of plastic as there are not so good ones made of metal. Again, just an idea for you to consider. I'm writing this specifically since you mention the Optricon Traveler Mg, it is indeed made of magnesium. However, the newer Traveler ED is made of plastic (polycarbonate), but just to give you and idea, Opticron offers a 30 year guarantee on both and the Mg is 259 GBP (291 €) and the new plastic-made ED costs 349 GBP (392 €). As you can see, Opticron places the new ED on a quite different price range (100 € in a 400 € binocular is a lot). This would seem to imply an improved performance. I have the Traveler ED and can only say very good things about it, both in terms of optical performance and also construction.

You can find a series on binoculars in this format (a light 450 g 8x30) from different manufacturers (Kite Lynx HD+, Maven B3 8x30, etc.) and some are made of metal, like the Nikon Monarch HG 8x30 (I guess you saw the Monarch 7). However, the price increase is quite steep, since this one will be around 1000 €, while you can sometimes find some of the previous range for a third of that price.

A last remark about the 8x30 format. It is a common place for small binoculars (with some exceptions) not to have a stellar performance against a low sun (the kind you find early in the day and at dusk), so some of the above are well-known by suffering from glare in direct light or difficult light situations. I think it is important that you consider this and, while checking a binocular, inspect this with caution. Say you go to a shop for a test, make it at the right time of the day, so you can try them in the most similar light conditions to the ones you will be using them.

Those are just some ideas, but I'm sure other forum members will also give you nice advice.
 

Binastro

Well-known member
House of Optics might be a good place to visit if lockdown ends.

Otherwise the advice given here should be good for mail order purchase.

Regards,
B
 

pbjosh

missing the neotropics
Switzerland
I would recommend a visit to an optics retailer to try some different models. If you budget is up to 1500, try a really good 400 model like the Opticron Traveler 8x32 that has been recommended. Compare it to something like the Nikon Monarch HG 8x30 and the Swarovski 8x30 CL which are the best 8x30 binoculars there are. Also try a very good 1000EU range 8x32 like Kowa, Zeiss Conquest, or Meopta Meostar. But ALSO try some of the more compact / light weight 8x42 binoculars like Vortex Viper (500EU) and Nikon Monarch HG (900EU).

I think you'll need to get some personal experience with 30mm vs 32mm vs 42mm and different price points. You might end up going for a high end light weight 42mm, a more affordable 30 or 32mm, or something else. There are a LOT of great options at light weight in the 300-1500 price range, any no one here can tell you if you'll be happier with a lightweight 42 vs a 30-32, and with a 400EU vs 1500EU bin...
 

eitanaltman

Well-known member
I’ve tried a lot of these. Your choices boil down to:

  • low price = Vortex Diamondback 8x32
  • moderate price = Opticron Traveler 8x32
  • high price = Monarch HG 8x30 or Swaro CL-B 8x30

Those are the best sub 500g options at each price level.

If you can afford the premium class I would go with the Monarch HG 8x30. The Swaro might have slightly better “raw” optical quality but the MHG is more practical being cheaper, with superior close focus and a much wider field of view.
 

ruud5

Active member
Netherlands
Bedankt allemaal. Ik ben erg blij met alle reacties.

yarrellii
Afmeting en gewicht is een belangrijk vertrekpunt voor mij. Anders zal ik de kijker niet gebruiken. Ik ken mezelf wat dat betreft. Daarom zoek ik ook een vompacte 30/32. In dehoop dat die al wat beter met minder licht is als de echte compacte kijkers. Ik begrijp dat een groot objectief beter is bij minder licht.
Bouwkwaliteit. Ik heb jaren gewerkt als instrumentmaker. Het klinkt misschien gek maar ik wil iets van kwaliteit in mijn handen hebben. En de vooruitgang levert niet altijd een betere kwaliteit op. De meeste veranderingen die ik zag ontstonden eerder vanuit een commercieel vertrekpunt..
Kite Lynx HD, Maven B3 8x30, Nikon Monarch HG 8x30. Ik ga naar ze kijken. Bedankt.
Moeilijke lichtsituaties. Ik moet dat uitzoeken. Dat is voor mij nog niet helder.

Maljunulo
Begroting? Heb eigenlijk niet zo'n idee nog. Ik wil iets goeds en daarna kijk ik wel.

Binastro
Het beste is natuurlijk om er een aantal in je handen te hebben gehad en er door hebt gekeken in de omstandigheden waarin ik de kijker zal gebruiken. Maar dat weten jullie al. ook al is dat vaak persoonlijk. Ik zal moeten leren omgaan met de kijker.

pbjosh
E.en grote zaak bezoeken zou perfect zijn maar ik ben bang dat dit de komende periode niet zal lukken..Ik vertrouw op advies hier en hou voorlopig vast aan mijn eerste uitgangspunt. Laag gewicht, 30/32 mm. Beste beeldprestatie, en bij weinig licht.

eitanaltman
De Opticon traveller en de Monarch HG 8x30 spreken me bijzonder aan maar eigenlijk vind ik de Nikon nog iets te zwaar.

[email protected]
De Swarovski Swarovision 8x32 SV ziet er heel fraai uit en heeft mooie recensie maar ook deze vind ik wat zwaar..


Nog een paar vraagjes;

Op internet kwam ik ook de Bushnell Forge 10 x 30 tegen. Qua afmeting en gewicht voldoet aan mijn uitgangspunten. Ik vind er echter geen review van. Heeft iemand hier ervaring met de kijker?

Ook ben ik aan het oriënteren waar ik de nieuwe kijker eventueel zal gaan kopen. Ik kwam een site tegen met de naam expertbinocular.com. De prijzen daar zijn aantrekkelijk. Is het verantwoord om hier te kopen?

Alvast mijn dank voor reacties. gr. ruud
 

ruud5

Active member
Netherlands
Bedankt allemaal. Ik ben erg blij met alle reacties.

yarrellii
Afmeting en gewicht is een belangrijk vertrekpunt voor mij. Anders zal ik de kijker niet gebruiken. Ik ken mezelf wat dat betreft. Daarom zoek ik ook een vompacte 30/32. In dehoop dat die al wat beter met minder licht is als de echte compacte kijkers. Ik begrijp dat een groot objectief beter is bij minder licht.
Bouwkwaliteit. Ik heb jaren gewerkt als instrumentmaker. Het klinkt misschien gek maar ik wil iets van kwaliteit in mijn handen hebben. En de vooruitgang levert niet altijd een betere kwaliteit op. De meeste veranderingen die ik zag ontstonden eerder vanuit een commercieel vertrekpunt..
Kite Lynx HD, Maven B3 8x30, Nikon Monarch HG 8x30. Ik ga naar ze kijken. Bedankt.
Moeilijke lichtsituaties. Ik moet dat uitzoeken. Dat is voor mij nog niet helder.

Maljunulo
Begroting? Heb eigenlijk niet zo'n idee nog. Ik wil iets goeds en daarna kijk ik wel.

Binastro
Het beste is natuurlijk om er een aantal in je handen te hebben gehad en er door hebt gekeken in de omstandigheden waarin ik de kijker zal gebruiken. Maar dat weten jullie al. ook al is dat vaak persoonlijk. Ik zal moeten leren omgaan met de kijker.

pbjosh
E.en grote zaak bezoeken zou perfect zijn maar ik ben bang dat dit de komende periode niet zal lukken..Ik vertrouw op advies hier en hou voorlopig vast aan mijn eerste uitgangspunt. Laag gewicht, 30/32 mm. Beste beeldprestatie, en bij weinig licht.

eitanaltman
De Opticon traveller en de Monarch HG 8x30 spreken me bijzonder aan maar eigenlijk vind ik de Nikon nog iets te zwaar.

[email protected]
De Swarovski Swarovision 8x32 SV ziet er heel fraai uit en heeft mooie recensie maar ook deze vind ik wat zwaar..


Nog een paar vraagjes;

Op internet kwam ik ook de Bushnell Forge 10 x 30 tegen. Qua afmeting en gewicht voldoet aan mijn uitgangspunten. Ik vind er echter geen review van. Heeft iemand hier ervaring met de kijker?

Ook ben ik aan het oriënteren waar ik de nieuwe kijker eventueel zal gaan kopen. Ik kwam een site tegen met de naam expertbinocular.com. De prijzen daar zijn aantrekkelijk. Is het verantwoord om hier te kopen?

Alvast mijn dank voor reacties. gr. ruud
Thnks all. I am glad with all the response.

yarrellii
Size and weight is important for me. Otherwise i shal not use the binocular. I know myself... Therefore a compact 30/32. In the hope it is better with low ligt as the compacts. I understand a large objective is better with low low light.
Building quality. Ik worked years as a mechanical engineer. Maybe it sounds crazy but I wanted something from quality in my hands. The most changes I saw in technique was not better for quality. Onother target..
Kite Lynx HD, Maven B3 8x30, Nikon Monarch HG 8x30. Ik shall watch them. Thanks.
Difficult light. I must find out. Which one is the best...

Maljunulo
I want something goods. Money second place.

Binastro
Ofcourse it is the best to have them in your hands. I trust on your experiences en shal learn wih it.

pbjosh
I trust on advice here and keep my starting points. Low weight, 30/32 mm. Best quality, special with low light.

eitanaltman
De Opticon traveller en de Monarch HG 8x30 I like but the Nikon is a little heavy...

[email protected]
De Swarovski Swarovision 8x32 SV very nice but als a little heavy..


Some questions;

I saw the Bushnell Forge 10 x 30. Dimensions and weight is wat I am looking for. But I do not find any review. Has anyone experience with it?

Als looking where to buy a scope. I saw expertbinocular.com. Low prices. Is it ok to buy here?

Thank gr. ruud
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
The Swarovski EL 8x32 might be a couple oz. heavier, but it will without a doubt outperform any of the 8x30 binoculars you are looking at. I would definitely try one first. You might like it. Many do!
 

pbjosh

missing the neotropics
Switzerland
Given your really strong preference for small size and light weight you are looking at, if you want the best build quality and the best image quality, I think that, by far, your best options are the Swarovski CL-B and the Nikon Monarch HG. Both have a very premium feel and very good build quality. I would say the Swaro feels more premium and feels a little better built, and certainly has a better warranty. The Nikon might be a bit better for actual birding though, depending on how you use it.

The Opticron Traveler (and from what I can tell / what one reads) the Kite Lynx are (not surprisingly for the price) a step down in build quality and how "premium" they feel, but will be among the best at their price point probably.

The only way to get better optics than the 8x30 CL or MHG is to go up to an alpha 8x32. The Zeiss FL and the Leica UVHD are the smallest and lightest options here.
 

jring

Well-known member
Hi,

in general, the given requirements dictate a very slim result set (astonishingly it is not empty, as the original poster has given one example). The requirements are also a bit contradictory (30/32mm objectives and good low light performance).

Just some thoughts:

- the Monarch 7 does a lot of things right and is a very good option considering the pricepoint.

- The Traveller ED 8x32 is the Opticron version of that and is also well regarded, as are their Kite (Lynx 8x32) and Maven (B3 8x32) brethren - did I forget one of the Kamakura bunch?

- The Traveller Mg 8x32 is (despite the quite similar name) not from that series - as can be easily seen by looking at the rather narrow field of view of 6.4 deg.

- the use of plastic as a material for a pair of binoculars is not necessarily an indicator for the quality (or lack of). One prominent example being the Zeiss FL 8x32 which was launched as Zeiss top offering at the time with a plastic body. It is still a quite good option in that class (albeit a bit more hefty than your limit of 450g - it's a tad over 500 and one of lightest 8x30 alphas). And I have not heard of those bodies breaking...
On the other hand there are countless lemons with metal bodies...

Joachim
 

ruud5

Active member
Netherlands
Bedankt,

Is er iets te zeggen over de Bushnell Forge 10 x 30?

And order via expertbinocular.com ?
 

ruud5

Active member
Netherlands
Is there something to say about the Bushnell Forge 10 x 30?
And about the internetsite expertbinocular.com ?
 

jring

Well-known member
Is there something to say about the Bushnell Forge 10 x 30?

Hi,

yes, we have no data on it so far, it is certainly made in china (not necessarily a bad thing, depends on which manufacturer and what the QC Bushnell ordered)...

But one thing is certain, if you are looking for good low light performance, a 10x30 is not what you search for. Also not if you want easy eye placement and a pair which is easy to hold steady for more than a few minutes. 10x30 binoculars are not too popular for a reason - if you absolutely need 10x, get a 10x42.

PS: allbinos has a test of the 8x42 - that was a fairly good example - but not light: https://www.allbinos.com/index.php?test=lornetki&test_l=340

Joachim
 

Maljunulo

Well-known member
I think the requirements are a mass of contradictions, which makes it difficult to recommend.

"Plastic" is a non-specific term which covers a very large number of materials, many of which are very strong and very light, and can also be expensive.
 

ruud5

Active member
Netherlands
No mass of contradictions! Just the best 30/32 mm binocular, 400 gramms, with the best low light experience.

Plastic; Ofcourse its to general to say plastics. But you know what I mean. In a lot of cases it is used to reduce the costs..
 

jring

Well-known member
No mass of contradictions! Just the best 30/32 mm binocular, 400 gramms, with the best low light experience.

Plastic; Ofcourse its to general to say plastics. But you know what I mean. In a lot of cases it is used to reduce the costs..

Hi,

the problem is that with your new weight limit, (down to 400g from 450g in the first post), you have limited the choice to the only pair of 8x30 bins I know in that weight range and that is the Opticron Traveller Mg 8x32 (or some earlier plastic version with the same optics). Comes with the compromise of a super narrow field more fitting for a pocket pair.

Normal 8x30/32 bins start at around 500g, up to 650g plus for some more hefty examples. The Nikon M7 at 435g and its brethren Opticron Traveller ED, Kite Lynx HD and Maven B3 at around 450g are noted exceptions with less compromises than the Traveller Mg. All have a plastic body though, Lynx and Maven with some metal parts.

If you really need 400g or less, you'll probably be better served with an 8x25 pocket pair... the premium 8x25 models from Zeiss and Swaro are between 290 and 345g. But these also suffer from fairly narrow fields, the Zeiss less so than the Swaro.

I would strongly recommend the M7 or one of its brethren at least - or basically any good 8x30 pair if you can take 500g plus. A good pair of 8x30 can be used for general birding if one is ok with loosing a few minutes of observation time at dusk and dawn in comparison to the usual 8x40 birding glass.

If you insist on best low light performance (and are young enough to use the large exit pupil), you want sth along the lines of a 7x50, 8x56 or 10x60 pair. 1000g will be light for those.

Joachim
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top