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ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

New Bins advice needed (1 Viewer)

Jazzyboy

Active member
United Kingdom
Hi everyone, I have just had a week away and I've broken my old bins ( Pentax porro prism) and I would like something to replace them with.

I have spent a good while researching possible replacements but I'm going around in circles and the budget keeps rising so I thought I'd ask your views on the subject.

I'm looking to improve on the old ones quite significantly and thought I would throw £300 at it and sort it out but not so, there are just so many different makes and all appear to be Chinese made (well under £500 anyway) and I know many Chinese optics suffer with sample variation poor QC.

I have been looking at the Hawke ED X and also the Vortex Viper HD as my primary interest as they both though made in China, have no quibble lifetime guarantees. This is a comfortable price point as I'm thinking that one pair of Binoculars is prob not ideal and maybe I need 2 or 3 pairs for different uses.

I don't really have a fixed budget but don't have money to burn either so I'm looking for value really.

I'm 65 and don't require glasses except for closer stuff, I'm long sighted, that said I have always been more comfortable with longer eye relief on my astro eyepieces, also it's sometimes nice to not have to remove sunglasses for a quick spot of something.

I'm in the UK in mid wales with no nearby shops to visit to compare anything so will probably have to order choices online.

Do I go for something better like a Trinovid and just have one pair or do I budget and get a couple of pairs?

I have confused myself so any help will be appreciated.
 

Rob from Texas

Well-known member
Welcome! And I agree Maljunulo. If you were to split your funds for 2 pair....you may wish you had the collective funds back to go into a single, more expensive pair.
By the way, I have both the Vortex Viper and the Leica Trinovid. Both are fine samples. The Leica are brighter but more expensive. The Viper were a super bargain at the time and the warranty remains outstanding. Still have them both, but were purchased 15 years apart.

The Zeiss Conquest HD gets a lot of compliments here. If you decide on only one pair, perhaps that is worth looking at.
 

Jazzyboy

Active member
United Kingdom
Hi Rob, how old are your ,Vipers? In 2018 the design changed and the older ones seemed to have better QC and they had metal focus and diopter knobs.
 

Maljunulo

Well-known member
Even top-of-the-line, world-class binoculars involve compromises of one sort or another.

If you are going to spend less money, you have to realize and accept the fact that in order to sell at a lower price, the manufacturer of the lower-priced instrument is going to have to make even more compromises, and/or greater compromises than the top-tier manufacturer made. These will be in construction, materials, optics and quality control, and will vary with the manufacturer.

If you are aware of this and accept it, there is really not a problem. Be happy with what you have and use it to the best of your ability and accept its limits. Just understand that a $300 binocular will never equal a $3000 binocular and it is idle to pretend otherwise, but you may not care.

It will never equal the tippy-top-tier glass, but that doesn't mean it is useless. Again, be content with what you have. It is orders of magnitude better than your bare eyeballs unless you have chosen from the absolute bottom of what is available.
 
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PYRTLE

Old Berkshire Boy
I concur that one pair of a high quality binocular is more likely to give you greater satisfaction when used than two or three pairs of an inferior product. Why do you feel you need more than one pair? You're cash would be tied up in a second pair rather than put towards a better quality unit.
Start of with what size and magnification you're after, compared to you're broken Pentax porros.....eg 8 x 42. This spec' would also be useful for night sky use.
In conclusion; determine your budget, then the magnification and size and follow up with researching say 3 options.
And dont discount a pre used item either, quality usually lasts trouble free rather than a no quibble warranty on an inferior product. Good luck.
 

Jazzyboy

Active member
United Kingdom
I have a friend who has a few pairs of £100 8x25 ED bins. Wherever he is in the car, in his campervan or at home he always has a pair to hand for unexpected spots of birds or wildlife. He also has the more conventional 8x42 bins for planned trips and even 10 power bins for seated work.

If I was able to rest the bins I personally like the extra reach of 10 power, my old PPPs were 10x50, but free standing I think the 8x42 is a better bet due to steadiness issues.

With this in mind I thought I might be better with one of each.
 

Jazzyboy

Active member
United Kingdom
For me, the 1-2 punch is 10x42 and 8x32 (IF you are needing on going the two pair route). A 10x42 +8x42 or 8x42+8x32 seems too redundant.
Yes Rob, I agree, I was thinking maybe 8x32 or even 8x25 plus 10x42.

If I went with 8x42 I think i'd maybe go with something 12 power or higher for rested use, bird hides and the like.
 

Ratal

Well-known member
I do plan to try a pair of these soon with luck.
I have a Hawke 85ED spotting scope, had 10x43 Frontier ED (Lost off the edge of a cliff by a fool I loaned them briefly to) and havew nothing but great things to say at the price point. With the ED-X, you are getting a hellishly good pair of binoculars - having tried them and the APO, I strongly advise on the ED-X if you in the 300 UK pound bracket.
 

Gijs van Ginkel

Well-known member
Jazzboy,
If your budget is limited: look at a number op Meopta models: excellent quality for a fair price. I use the Meostar B1 8x32 with great pleasure and it performs just as well as a Leica Ultravid HD-plus 8x32 and at a much lower price while they both share a compact body.
Gijs van Ginkel
 

ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
Jazzboy,
If your budget is limited: look at a number op Meopta models: excellent quality for a fair price. I use the Meostar B1 8x32 with great pleasure and it performs just as well as a Leica Ultravid HD-plus 8x32 and at a much lower price while they both share a compact body.
Gijs van Ginkel
I agree with this other than they’re not the easiest model to get hold of in the UK.

Rich
 

jeffhosier

Well-known member
Jazzyboy

Don't forget second hand from a reputable shop. 5 or 6 years ago I bought a pair of early Swaro 8.5 x 42s for about £700 from London Camera Exchange. The bins are still going strong, and, with the exception of the Canon IS bins that I now use, I've not seen anything in newer 'alpha' models that made financial sense. Yes, the new ones are a few percentage points better - although you have to look quite hard to find the improvement - but they're at least twice as expensive as buying an earlier second hand 'alpha'.

As they say across the pond, you do the math!


Jeff
 

Upland

Well-known member
I’d make a list of what characteristics you’re looking for. Does weight or size matter? Fov and brightness? Magnification? I’m close to your age and the 10x are getting harder to hold steady. Also my eyes aren’t quite what they used to be so the excellent medium priced binos being made these days work really well for me. For a great all around glass, I’d be looking at an 8x42 like the Nikon Monarch HG or perhaps the Trinovids or Conquests. Opticron’s new Auroras sound pretty nice and it seems there are some good deals to be found on the very nice Imagics on your side of the pond. As long as you buy from a reputable dealer with a good return policy you’ll be fine. Maybe consider a trip to an area with dealers as well. Could be fun. Good luck.
 

Jazzyboy

Active member
United Kingdom
I have a Hawke 85ED spotting scope, had 10x43 Frontier ED (Lost off the edge of a cliff by a fool I loaned them briefly to) and havew nothing but great things to say at the price point. With the ED-X, you are getting a hellishly good pair of binoculars - having tried them and the APO, I strongly advise on the ED-X if you in the 300 UK pound bracket.
I agree the ED-X does appear to be great value and appears to punch well above it's price. It's one I want to try.
 
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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