• 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.

opticron adventurer T WP binoculars - thoughts? (1 Viewer)

pat mitchel

Active member
A general question as to whether the opticron adventurer T WP porros (which have specs virtually identical to the new line of celestron ultima porros) that have full multicoating and BaK4 prisms are worth the money, I do realize they are made as an entry level binoc, but as a porro lover, was wondering if they fail in comparison to say a twice the price roof? I'm interested in the 8x40 specifically, but would appreciate any first hand knowledge of the models in general. Thank You, Pat
 

yarrellii

Well-known member
Supporter
Hi Pat, I'm aware you mentioned you're interested in the 8x42 (I guess 8x40 is a typo) but you might want to take a look (in case you haven't already done so) to this review of the 10x50 model from Binocularsky:


Yes, it is a different model, but I guess a lot of what's written regarding build quality probably applies to the whole range and not only the 10x50. The summary is quite telling: " If there is a better 10x50 for less than £125". You can also read there about the nice customer service from Opticron.

You can also read FrankD impressions on the smallest of the family, the 6.5x32, also seem to agree (nice for the price).
 

Guilhem37

Well-known member
Hi, I bought them in May 2020 (8x42) and used them ~85 times, for long sessions (4-10h each time).
It is my first binoculars so I'm not able to judge the optics but here is what I can tell you:

  • the building quality is very good and they are very pleasant to use: focus (a bit hard at the beginning but gets smoother in the course of time), straps very comfortable, lightweight etc.
  • ergonomics good & easy
  • I like the design: simple & nice
  • both exit pupils are (rather seriously) truncated on top-inside side
  • at dawn/dusk (very first and very last 30mn of daylight), the image is not bright enough to enjoy birdwatching. However, even deep in forest, by good weather the image is good
  • field of view looks good and wide to me
  • I often had reflections (aberration?) when light came from the side or front by sunny days
  • I used them by rainy days and no problem with waterproof
  • image is very nice as soon as you have a bit of light (not too cloudy)
  • nothing broke so far

Despite these drawbacks, I enjoy these binoculars: 90% of the time, they give me a very good image of birds and they are very comfortable to use. And they are cheap.
I'm happy to have picked them for a start.

Now I want to invest in higher quality.
That's why I'm here but I saw your post, so I made a detour ;)

Hope it was useful,
Guilhem
 

pat mitchel

Active member
Thank you Guilhem, after the initial report of the binoculars being sort of meh, I ordered a pair of nikon action extreme 8x42 - refurbished from Nikon USA. When received them, I was surprised to find a pristine pair of bins. Could not find a single fault with them (outside of the small drill hole on the focuser center nikon name medallion (I suppose that makes it a return, so no warranty). Not much difference in price to the opticrons and instead of fold down rubber eyecups there are 4 position twist eyecups and a slightly wider FOV. The drop off of the sharp center is fairly quick but still acceptable. A couple bucks more than the adventurer TWP. Regards, Pat
 

yarrellii

Well-known member
Supporter
My praise for the Opticron Adventurer T WP 8x32.

I've used the Kowa YF 8x30 and 6x30 for many years, and they've been my reference for entry-level binoculars with nice performance and unbeatable value.

This was until the other day my neighbours whatsapped me for help: one of the objective tubes of their old Bresser 10x50 had broken, and they simply didn't know how to start looking for a replacement, "you surely know what's worth buying", they told me. I asked them what they wanted the binos for (it was the casual walk during the day) and what was their budget. I kind of steered them to spend at least 100 € and also adviced them to get an 8x32 instead of a big and heavy 10x50. I was initially going for the safe bet of the Kowa YF 8x30, but alas they were out of stock, so I remembered about the Adventurer, which I could get an even lower price (80-90 € against around 120 € for the Kowa).

The moment I got them I was in for a surprise. I honestly find the view through the Adventurer noticeably better than through the YF. It is this simple.
The FOV is wider (8,1º vs 7,5º), but I don't find this actually gives the Opticron any real advantage, because the edges of the Adventurer are pretty poor, there's like a sudden blur of distorsioned image. But then, behold: the view on axis is simply amazing for that price (and very good in absolute terms): crisp, very rich in contrast and with a focus that snaps right into focus offering a sharp view. I mean, seriously: congratulations to Opticron for getting that device at that price. The handling is very nice too. It's basically a clon of the EII but with an unexpected improvement. One of the minor nags with the EII is that the tubes are so short that there's little room for the pinky to rest. The Adventurer allow that extra half centimeter for added ease of use. Really remarkable. On the other hand, I have to say that I love the grip on the YF, because the barrels are slimmer, and are sculpted in a more ergonomical (say organical) way. The Adventurer come with nice tethered objective covers that pop in the inside part of the tube, but the eye lens cover are a bit of a let down, they are simple individual caps, the kind you got in old porros (and that are so easily misplaced and lost). Eyecups are old-style fold-down made of rubber. The rubber itself feels a little softer and more supple than the EII, while the Kowa have twist-up eyecups, which could be a better option for some since they allow for intermediate positions (me included). The Adventurer are heavier than the Kowa 540 g vs 465 g.

Ah, and last but no least... they come with a tripod socket and all! Yes, probably not the most important for feature for many, but I know I end up using it in all my binoculars at some point. So for me it's a welcome feature, even in a 8x32.

Before giving them to my neighbours I wanted to check under different circumstances: and they performed really well both under bright conditions and at sunset. I actually did this test between the Kowa YF and the Adveturer, and the view through the Opticron maintained higher levels of contrast and a clearer view, the Kowa was more washed. However, the Adventurer's clean view suffered from sudden flashes of light (flares?) every now and then. Just for the sake of it, I threw another couple of nice binoculars in this sunset test: Nikon EII 8x30 and Kite Lynx HD+. The Adventurer kept its contrast an clear view better than any of the rest. That was quite a feat.

So, where's the catch? Build seems really solid in the Adventurer, and the focus wheel feels way better than the Kowa (I find the focus wheel is actually the weakest part of the YF). It's obviously impossible to know how will they be after some use (there has to be a catch somewhere, doesn't it?), they probably won't stand the test of time like the EII, but I wonder if the YF will be any better. QC is another issue, I guess that’s where part of the catch is in entry level binoculars, because I think they’re a little out of adjustment (although I could be mistaken, but I’ve felt my eyes strain a bit after using them). I've used my partner as a guinea pig, and after using them for a while she simply uttered a word: contrast!!! She didn't feel any strain or discomfort (maybe she has a better accommodation than me).

But both in terms of optical performance and the feeling of build construction these are seriously worth considering in the 8x32 - sub 100 €/$ area. In fact, I wonder how much more you have to spend to beat the view. I’m comparing by memory (I know, it’s the worst of things you can do), but I don’t think an Aculon was any better than this (and in my memory a little worse).

All in all: my new entry-level favourite, and one to recommend to anyone (and get them in awe by the view). In fact, there is a new version of the Kowa YF (in green). I don't know if it has been improved compared to the black and red version, but I see the price has gone up to around 150 €. So, even at previous prices 80-90 € vs 115-125 € I'd say the Opticron offers a better optical performance. The question remains if in case someone would really need a lighter device, the weight difference would be enough to tip the balance for the Kowa and outweigh the optical advantage of the Opticron. Either way, two safe bets IMHO.

The Adventurer have really surprised me and exceded my expectations and they leave a question in my mind...
  • What does the SRGA get you for more than double the price (£199 vs £75). Yes, the SRGA have a slightly wider FOV (8,1 vs 8,3) and I expect it to have a better off-axis performance (well, it won't be difficult). I expect it to be brighter, although the Adventurer doesn't feel dim at all. And then there's the fact that Opticron claim the Adventurer to be "waterproof" (well, of some sort, whatever that means) and the SRGA not. I've read that the SRGA is not quite a match for the EII, but having seen the contrast and sharpness of the Adventurer, I am really curious about the SRGA.
  • These are very cheap binoculars, but they offer such a level of contrast and "pop" (the way the image snaps into focus against a blurred background, kind of "bokeh", if you like), that it leaves me wondering about coatings. These surely cannot have the latest or greatest coatings. However, under a sunset light they outperform binoculars costing 4x and 5x more. So, is the level of contrast achieved by sacrificing something else in the image?

After my experience with the 8x32, I think I'm getting the 6,5x32.

Find attached a few pictures for reference.
 

Attachments

  • OpticronAdventurer832_1.jpeg
    OpticronAdventurer832_1.jpeg
    127.8 KB · Views: 23
  • OpticronAdventurer832_2.jpeg
    OpticronAdventurer832_2.jpeg
    144.9 KB · Views: 23
  • OpticronAdventurer832_3.jpeg
    OpticronAdventurer832_3.jpeg
    137.5 KB · Views: 23
  • OpticronAdventurer832_4.jpeg
    OpticronAdventurer832_4.jpeg
    131.5 KB · Views: 23
Last edited:

Users who are viewing this thread

Top