• Welcome to BirdForum, the internet's largest birding community with thousands of members from all over the world. The forums are dedicated to wild birds, birding, binoculars and equipment and all that goes with it.

    Please register for an account to take part in the discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.
ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

Revisiting BF - Current binocular collection (1 Viewer)

looksharp65

Well-known member
Sweden
2022-02-12 09.36.22.jpg

Hi all! Doing a brief touchdown again as proof-of-life. Many events in my life converged to the point where spending all my leisure here became unnecessary.
Three of these stand out: My exhaustion syndrome, the need for better balance in my life and the fact that I became basically satisfied with what I own in binoculars. A few of you have tried to keep in touch with me, for which I'm thankful although my response not quite reflected this. This post is a one-off and I will not return to being a frequent poster here.

I moved to an apartment on 10th floor on a hill, so I can see lighthouses as far away as 40 kilometers, in fact also 54 kilometers at times, which means I see the slightly remote Danish island Anholt in the middle of Kattegat, Sweden/Denmark. The lighthouse has a red stripe or belt around its circumference, and when conditions are perfect, I can confirm the red colour when using my Nikon ED82A.

The image shows my current collection and an attempt to arrange them in order of image quality (more upon that soon)
The left porro is a Meopta 6x30 Antireflex which is plenty sharp, but dim, with very short eye relief and a small FOV. Mostly a collector's item for decoration.
A significantly better view is offered in the Mamiya 7x28 roof, which is also sharp, has a cool and fairly dim view probably because of Al prism coatings. It has a respectable FOV of 155 m. Its worst shortcoming is the almost ridiculous field curvature.
Third is the Nikon CF 6x15 reverse porro modern version with multicoating. Apart from fiddly eye placement and confusing ergonomics, it has an outstanding view for its size and exit pupil.

Then we get to the usable binoculars.
The Meostar B1 8x32 has a yellowish hue, but it is rugged, easy to use with spectacles and delivers highly usable views.
The three next aren't easy to decide how to rate because their views and use are so markedly different. Image quality is really close.
The Nikon E II 8x30 delivers a sublime view a roof binocular hardly could compete with. When tested in daylight today, bright but overcast weather, I found it slightly dim. The same goes for the Meostar HD 12x50, which is an indispensable item at the height and distance I look from on my balcony.
Surprisingly, I also found the Nikon EDG 7x42 slightly dim. Granted, these are not the conditions you'd use it in. In dusk or darkness, its transmission rate and big exit pupil beats the big Meopta despite the latter's premium twilight number.

Last one, and the one I bring the most often as a go-to bin, is the Kite Lynx HD 8x30. It has a superior perceived brightness a day like this, visibly brighter than each of the Nikons or the big Meopta. Since I usually use contact lenses, the shortish eye relief is a non-issue.

My once so beloved Fury 6,5x32 is on long-term lend to a friend and I can't say I miss it too much. The Lynx does a great deal of what I admired with the Fury. Maybe a Kowa 6,5x32 would fit a small niche. My Z-R 7x43 lost one of its eyecups and I'll have to fix it. Its view is remarkably similar to the EDG apart from edge sharpness, but the build is a mess.

It's no wonder the new breed of compact, sub 500 g 30 mm roofs have replaced many birder's heavier stuff. For the most discerning users, the Teutonic Three bigger 32 mm variants would probably do it all.
As for myself, I needn't change anything, but the Nikon Monarch HG 8x30 or 10x30 should be a slight improvement.

Thanks for reading, take care!

//L
 
Over the years I have been able to collect several Ziess Dialyt models.
So it was time to get them all out to see each other. What is interesting about
these is the size comparison. I like every one of them, their performance is very
good.
From left to right. 7x42 T*, 8x30 T*P, 8x56 T*P, and the 10x40 T*P*.
Jerry
 

Attachments

  • DSC_0003.JPG
    DSC_0003.JPG
    231.4 KB · Views: 86
I only have 5 binoculars right now. I try to mix them up so every binocular will bring something a little different to the table. For an alpha roof 10x, I have the NL 10x32. I like the smaller size and huge FOV, and remarkably I don't see any significant glare with them. For an alpha roof 8x, I have the Noctivid 8x42. The Noctivid surprised me how good it is. It is very bright, has the famous Leica saturated colors, and it is one of the sharpest binoculars I have ever seen on-axis. The build quality is the best I have ever seen in a binocular. It is at a different level than either Zeiss or Swarovski. I have to have some porros because they have that special 3D view that a roof can't match. For me, the two best I have found are the Nikon E2 8x32 and the Swarovski Habicht 8x30 W. The E2 has the advantage of the bigger FOV and easier focuser but the Habicht has a superior view and is brighter with an incredible transmission of 95% and in the daytime the view is unreal with a "sparkle" because of the super high transmission that no roof can match. The Habicht also has excellent CA control which contributes to its excellent view, and all without any ED glass because a porro doesn't need it. The Habicht can show glare in some situations, but I found by using a Bino Bandit it greatly controls a lot of the glare, especially that coming through the sides of the eyepieces. I don't think you can match the quality of view that can be seen through a Habicht. I noticed there was a seller selling his Zeiss 8x56 FL in the Bird Forum classified which for many represents the epitome of roof binoculars and when asked why he said he wanted to get a Habicht. That is very telling of how good the Habicht's are. For my knock-around and car binocular, I have a Leica Trinovid BN 8x32 that I picked up for $500. It is tough, has great optics and because of its small size very portable. For a monocular which I prefer to carry over compact binoculars on my bike rides I just picked up an Opticron DBA VHD+ 8x42 which has to be the best monocular I have ever tried, and I have tried a lot of them. There you have it, my current binocular collection. I am going to try to limit myself to 5 binoculars so if I want to try something else I have to sell one that I have.
 
Last edited:
I would say you have all the bases covered, the Hg 10X30 would add a light 10X to the mix.
The thought has occurred to me. Sometimes I think of the 10x32 FL I sold to part-fund the EDG. It seemed like a good idea, in particular when I had it compete with my newly aquired 8x30 EII that, in my opinion, showed the same level of detail over the vast nature reserve here.
First time I tried a Kite Lynx HD 8x30 I was slighly underwhelmed when I compared it to the E II, but my sample is really nice. Obviously, the HG is better but by how much? Will it just be a loop where I return to something similar to the old FL? I could certainly make use of a good 10x30, but not really sure if it really would add anything I need.

The three 8x30 - 8x32s are the base. The 12x50 is used from my balcony and from my cycle-car (velomobile is the proper term) where I don't always need or want to step out, and in which I can support it very well. In fact, I could easily support a 15x56 just as good, but the physical effort of cycling causing palpitation is another factor to deal with. The 12x50 is reasonably fine to walk with, and at the upper limit of unsupported hand-holding. The EDG is the finest 7x42 ever made, period. But for the actual purpose, a 7x42 FL might be an even better match.
 
Maybe what you need is a large bino telescope for the balcony, as the 12X50 covers anything a 10X can do, except perhaps weight.
That's another idea that crossed my mind, and also a huge catadioptric telescope. But I'm in a career and not in a lockdown, and when I'm free I try to get outside. While my view is quite awesome, details are always pretty much the same, and the distances to nature count in one to several miles. Everything closer is mostly buildings and stuff. So unless I'm sick or short of time, the view is mostly for occasional enjoyment.
The image shows the (retired) twin lighthouses of the island Nidingen and the new lighthouse as well as some buildings. Shot with my Nikon P900, distance 32 kilometres. NW direction around summer solstice.
 

Attachments

  • P1000133.JPG
    P1000133.JPG
    695.2 KB · Views: 38
Here’s a few of my porro collection. Some old Zeiss Jenoptens 830’s, 1050’s, some nikons, newer Swarovski Habicht’s and a throw around Opticron 750.
 

Attachments

  • 69F40FE9-55BD-4A74-B485-F6514F6DE42D.jpeg
    69F40FE9-55BD-4A74-B485-F6514F6DE42D.jpeg
    3.1 MB · Views: 66
  • 6251ACBF-4DD7-4200-8EE4-D405F576A481.jpeg
    6251ACBF-4DD7-4200-8EE4-D405F576A481.jpeg
    3.2 MB · Views: 66
  • 69A898D2-5B8C-484F-A3FF-C477875C538F.jpeg
    69A898D2-5B8C-484F-A3FF-C477875C538F.jpeg
    3.2 MB · Views: 64
I now have the Noctivid 8x42, Habicht 8x30W, Habicht 7x42W, E2 8x30, Fujinon FMT-SX 7x50, Trinovid BN 8x32, Sightron Bluesky 8x32, Terra 8x25 and the Opticron DBA VHD+ 8x42 monocular. I have enlarged my collection.
 
I now have the Noctivid 8x42, Habicht 8x30W, Habicht 7x42W, E2 8x30, Fujinon FMT-SX 7x50, Trinovid BN 8x32, Sightron Bluesky 8x32, Terra 8x25 and the Opticron DBA VHD+ 8x42 monocular. I have enlarged my collection.
Love the Noctivids! As well as the 7x42‘s UVHD+ , best 7x42’s I’ve ever looked through. I just located a nice Nikon SE 832, delivering today 😁.

Hey Dennis , seriously attach a few photos of your binos, this is a good thread for it. Maybe others will keep it going showing some of there collections and maybe with some unique items.
 
I sold it on Bird Forum classified, even though it was the best 10x I have ever used. I decided I like 7x and 8x better than 10x because of the better DOF, bigger FOV and the steadier view. I have all 7x and 8x now.
 
By the time I could take a photo of them they would probably change. You know me!:ROFLMAO:
Lol. I’m the opposite, I buy and never sell. The Pictures of the porros were only some of what I have, there not all in same location. I had to gather those up for the pictures. I have some at home, and some in two different business offices. Then there s few more out of state in vacation home and my daughter in another state. This has become very addicting the last two years.

I went through this about 15 years with telescopes and eyepieces ,very expensive , became so ridiculous that my wife make a choice, it’s me or the optics. I chose my chocolate labrador retriever and my Zeiss telescopes. Just kidding, still married. It’s possible she won’t see the pictures here 😜
 
I sold it on Bird Forum classified, even though it was the best 10x I have ever used. I decided I like 7x and 8x better than 10x because of the better DOF, bigger FOV and the steadier view. I have all 7x and 8x now.
I agree with that, I like the 7 & 8‘s most as well. But that 10NL is amazing. I have the 42. I will never get rid of that.
 
I think I have one more i want to have in the collection, an EDG. But not sure which one 7, 8, or 10, 32 or 42. What do you know , is there a sweet spot in the the line up? And which is the most desired and why?
Thank you 🙏🏼
 
I agree with that, I like the 7 & 8‘s most as well. But that 10NL is amazing. I have the 42. I will never get rid of that.
I just shake too much with 10x. There is some extra detail, but I can't tolerate the shaking and I just have a more relaxed view at 7x and 8x and I can really see as much. I have gone to porros pretty much for the 3D, high transmission and transparent relaxed view.
 
I think I have one more i want to have in the collection, an EDG. But not sure which one 7, 8, or 10, 32 or 42. What do you know , is there a sweet spot in the the line up? And which is the most desired and why?
Thank you 🙏🏼
The EDG 8x42 is probably the best, or if you like 10x the 10x42 is good also. EDG's are not the brightest binoculars in the world because they have a typical Nikon warm red color bias, so I would stay with a 42 mm aperture. The EDG 7x42 seemed dim to me for a 7x42, so I would avoid it. Personally, I wouldn't buy an EDG now because they are getting long in the tooth and Nikon no longer supports them if you need repairs. They will replace them with an MHG if you send them in for repair. The EDG's are hard to find now for a good price also. The Japanese sellers want too much for them.
 
The EDG 8x42 is probably the best, or if you like 10x the 10x42 is good also. EDG's are not the brightest binoculars in the world because they have a typical Nikon warm red color bias, so I would stay with a 42 mm aperture. The EDG 7x42 seemed dim to me for a 7x42, so I would avoid it. Personally, I wouldn't buy an EDG now because they are getting long in the tooth and Nikon no longer supports them if you need repairs. They will replace them with an MHG if you send them in for repair. The EDG's are hard to find now for a good price also. The Japanese sellers want too much for them.
8x42 always a good all around compromise. The only 10x power I’ve tried that I have no issue with shake is the 10x42NL’s. I’m sure the 400ft at a thousand yards has something to do with that. Havnt tried the SF’s in 10x42 though. Although I’m very impressed with the 8x32FS.

On the EDG, knowing what we know about Nikon , if there’s an issue I’d send to Suddarth for repair. Or any of the other reputable repair company’s. I’ve been eyeing those Japanese sellers, I’m seeing potential for around $1800. What did these sell for when new? Theres a dealer in UK has new in stock and Adorama in NY has a 10x32 but ridiculous $2300.

It’s a very tempting glass because of the image quality.. Brightness is nice but it’s not the end all in enjoyable observing when it comes to highend alphas. IMO when we’re getting into this level the image a beautiful in all of them. I love the NL, EL and SFs, all very bright but I gravitate to the Ultravids, which are warmer and less bright.

I’ve really been throwing out the charts, graphs and stats and just using what I find to be enjoyable when observing. Of course conditions at dictate what is most enjoyable for the occasion.
 
8x42 always a good all around compromise. The only 10x power I’ve tried that I have no issue with shake is the 10x42NL’s. I’m sure the 400ft at a thousand yards has something to do with that. Havnt tried the SF’s in 10x42 though. Although I’m very impressed with the 8x32FS.

On the EDG, knowing what we know about Nikon , if there’s an issue I’d send to Suddarth for repair. Or any of the other reputable repair company’s. I’ve been eyeing those Japanese sellers, I’m seeing potential for around $1800. What did these sell for when new? Theres a dealer in UK has new in stock and Adorama in NY has a 10x32 but ridiculous $2300.

It’s a very tempting glass because of the image quality.. Brightness is nice but it’s not the end all in enjoyable observing when it comes to highend alphas. IMO when we’re getting into this level the image a beautiful in all of them. I love the NL, EL and SFs, all very bright but I gravitate to the Ultravids, which are warmer and less bright.

I’ve really been throwing out the charts, graphs and stats and just using what I find to be enjoyable when observing. Of course conditions at dictate what is most enjoyable for the occasion.
When I was into EDG's I was buying them on eBay for about $1000 to $1200 for any size now it seems the rarity and price have gone up. If you could get a LNIB EDG 8x32 for $1200 that would be a pretty good deal, but I cringe at $1800 for an EDG that has been discontinued for years now. If you like UVHD's why don't you try a Noctivid 8x42? I think it is the best alpha out there.
 
Warning! This thread is more than 2 years ago old.
It's likely that no further discussion is required, in which case we recommend starting a new thread. If however you feel your response is required you can still do so.

Users who are viewing this thread

Back
Top