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ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

On bright compact binos (1 Viewer)


Robin stroker
Hello everyone -

Posting after ages - hope everyone is doing well.

I am looking for a pair of compact binos to carry when walking the dog and/or to keep in my backpack when hiking, and wanted to get your thoughts re brightness.

Some background: My main binos for birding are Zeiss Victory FL 8x32 and Conquest 10x42s. I also have a few others that i use for wildlife/general travel, where they may suffer from rougher handling: Minox BD 8x32 BR, Kowa BD 8x32 XD, Pentax 10x43 ED. I’ve also owned Vortex Viper 8x32s, Zen-Ray 8x42s and a few others. While it may be placebo, i think i can tell a difference between my Zeiss and the Minox/Kowa/Pentax - and while i obviously prefer the Zeiss, i am happy enough using the less expensive models in their preferred use case.

I am now looking for a pair of compact binos that i can stick in a backpack and/or the glove compartment of my car for casual/unexpected birding opportunities, or when walking the dog and such. Along with sharpness, brightness is something that is very important to me. I realize small optics arent going to be the best in low light, but when looking at something, I’d like the brightness through the binocular to kinda be close to the brightness of the scene.

To give you some examples of what works/doesnt work:
  • The afore-mentioned Minox, Kowa, Pentax are very satisfying for their use cases, even though i can tell they arent as good as the Zeiss two
  • I had a pair of Vortex Diamondbacks or something in 8x28 that just sucked the joy out of looking at anything because of how dull they were. Gave them away
  • I had a pair of Opticron Taigas that were also not very satisfying to look from
  • I have a pair of Nikon LX-L 8x20s that are surprisingly sharp and bright, but i do want something a little larger/less finicky than them
  • I also had a pair of Alpen something or the other 8x25s that were also very poor - dont know what happened to them

I am looking at a pair of Prostaff P7 8x30s - they are cheap enough to be used as beaters and seem to be close enough to the Monarch M7 in quality. Although the CN comparison between the two does say that the M7 is brighter, the M7s are more expensive enough for a pair of beater binos that I’d only get them if they really are SIGNFICANTLY better (I plan to get a pair of SF 8x42s at some point soon as well).

The other option was the Zeiss Terra 8x25 [edit: not 8x28 as originally written]. I forgot that I also used to own a pair of Terra 8x40s, which were eminently forgettable binos and i gave those away as well. That’s kinda soured me on the Terra line, despite the good reviews these small optics get. The poor FOV of the Terras is also a big check mark against them - and having tried the 10x28s at a store, i found them decent but not great.

So all of this is a very long-winded way of asking - do you guys think the Prostaff P7s will meet my needs? (I know, no guarantees - just looking for informed guesses). Sadly there are no binocular stores for me to go try out any of these models in this part of the world. So i need to rely on reviews.

The Maven C2 7x28 is the other candidate, i suppose but i will have to get them shipped over across the world and pay 40% plus in customs, whereas i can get the Nikons from Amazon in a day. Would also be open to other options - but like the Mavens, only if you think they will be notably better than the P7s.

Last edited:
vkalia post 1,
Try the Meopta 8x32, top quality for a very acceptable price, see also our test report on the WEB-site of House of Outdoor,
Gijs van Ginkel

Hello - is this the $1750 jobbie? Sadly, that’s far more than i want to spend on a pair of binos that will get tossed around a lot.

The Meopta Meosport 8x25 looks interesting though. Or did, rather, till i see the 334’ FOV.
These may do it for you. I've the 8X42 EDX, impressive IMO and used as yours, carried in my everyday bag, they don't have me missing the Zeiss 10X40B T*P like the Minox they replaced.

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