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

Short review of the Swarovski 10x42 NL Pure (1 Viewer)

Dutchbirder64

Well-known member
Today I visited Jan van Daalen of House of Outdoor & Optics. He had al three models of the NL Pure at display. Of course I could not walk away into the closest nature reserve for a few hours with my choice of the three, so it is just an impression. Jan is a nice down to earth guy with a lot of knowledge on optics.

The first thing I noticed is that the NL Pure is a bit on the heavy side comparing to my old Zeiss 10x40. Comparing to the EL it is about the same weight. But what a good balance and grip. My hands fit perfectly on the tubes. The very smooth operation of the focus wheel, brightness and very large FOV are a joy in this NL Pure. And razor sharp to both edges of the field. The diopter lock has a strong click.

I don’t think I would buy the 150 Euro headrest but on the 12x42 I can imagine you would have some advantage of the headrest.

Although I pre ordered the 10x42 at a different store Jan convinced me to test and see these bins myself. Be fast if you want one because otherwise you won’t get it in September.
 
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arran

Well-known member
Fully agree!
Looking forward to my 10x42 NL as well.
Thanks Jan for giving us the opportunity to test these bin in your shop.
 

Gray C

Newbie birder
I'm torn between the 10x and the 12x and I intend to test both before making my decision.

I won't be considering the 8x because I have the 8x42 SLC which I think are excellent and I see no reason to buy another pair of 8x42. I also have several other 8x of different sizes I use for hiking and slipping in the glove compartment of the car for ad hoc use, along with some vintage 8x too.

Looking forward to trying them out next Tues morning.
 
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Dutchbirder64

Well-known member
Today I picked up my 10x42 NL Pure. I am glad I ordered it the day after introduction. Dealers are getting just a slight part of their ordered bins is what I heard. If you order it now you will maybe get it next summer.

I did some birdwatching this afternoon and I am stunned by the light and sharpness. Okay, I have a Zeiss 10x40 BGA T which is still in very good condition so a lot has changed in 34 years. I was watching a possible juvenile Barred Warbler in the bushes and close range is incredibly close. I did not measure it but I estimated it at 1.8 meters.

I am maybe not the right person that can compare as we need someone who has also an EL. The grip and balance is perfect for my hands. I am very satisfied, but I need some more field usage to do a good review.
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Today I picked up my 10x42 NL Pure. I am glad I ordered it the day after introduction. Dealers are getting just a slight part of their ordered bins is what I heard. If you order it now you will maybe get it next summer.

I did some birdwatching this afternoon and I am stunned by the light and sharpness. Okay, I have a Zeiss 10x40 BGA T which is still in very good condition so a lot has changed in 34 years. I was watching a possible juvenile Barred Warbler in the bushes and close range is incredibly close. I did not measure it but I estimated it at 1.8 meters.

I am maybe not the right person that can compare as we need someone who has also an EL. The grip and balance is perfect for my hands. I am very satisfied, but I need some more field usage to do a good review.

Very interested to know how this 10×42 NL is to use as a general birding bin in comparison to say a mid-to-alpha level 140m+ Fov 8x42.
* Is the 133m Fov sufficient in real terms ? (such as when small birds flit about in a canopy and then decide to go to another group of trees).
* Is the dof acceptable with what appears to be a very slow focuser ? (keeping up with those same fast moving birds).
* Is the brightness comparable with an 8x in normal daytime viewing ?
Thanks :t:








Chosun :gh:
 

Dutchbirder64

Well-known member
I need lot more birding time of course to say more on the FOV and depth of field. I am used to the 10x for years now, but of course when forest birding an 8x can have advantages towards a 10x. Focusing is very smooth and fast enough. I think best selling one will be the 10.
 

jremmons

Wildlife Biologist
Chosun: Many people have used 10x binos for birding for years. I know my former boss used the 10x B&L Elites for all of his field survey work, and he was the best birder I've ever met. I have used 10xs with 300-330' and don't have any major problem following small birds in the canopy, though I prefer 8-9x most of the time due to a reduction in eye strain & image shake.

Justin
 

Uhu74

Well-known member
Today was the big, exciting day for me as well, went to my local store to compare the 8x and 10x NL.

I recently sold my EL 10x50 to make room for a 42mm. (With mixed feelings to be honest.)
The NL was high on my list, but I still had the SF and EL in mind too.
I really wanted to check out the NL first before buying, because regardless of any review I have read, I only believe my own eyes.

Took a look through the 8x first, but although I did like what I saw, I certainly wasn't blown away. For starters, I expected the FOV to be bigger.
Next up was the 10x. Yes, that was more like it😊
Could be that it was the 10x mag. where I was already used to, but I found the view of the 10x more "popping" and immersive than in the 8x.

Did a comparison between the EL and NL, and I could conclude the next things:

-Most obvious and nicest difference compared to the EL42 were the superb ergonomics of the NL. The EL's tubes almost felt twice as fat in comparison, and I like the feel of the NL's shape much better.

-CA seemed to be a little better controlled in the NL

-Resolution seemed about the same for both bins, but this is almost impossible to check without a tripod and magnifier.

-Edge sharpness is spectacular like the EL, but with bigger FOV.

-Bigger FOV was not very obvious at first sight, but next to the EL, it is clearly visible.

-Contrast and general image quality is truely stunning.

-Focuser is super smooth and even, the best I ever felt in a Swarovski, and the first Swaro focuser where I have nothing to complain about.

-In general, I would describe the NL as very EL-ish, but with even more improvements in optical quality and way better ergonomics.

I have fitted a Matin harness, the 2 adapters to attach a regular strap or harness are included.
The winged eyecup set fits as well, and they are currently installed as well.

I need to give it some more time to build up a final conclusion, but it sure looks very promising. During this day's use, they really started to grow on me.

Really glad that I tried the NL, and the 10x went home with me. Happy days 😊

I'm sure I would also have had little to complain about when I would have bought a EL10x42, but I couldn't resist to go all the way this time😁
The shitty thing about money is that you can only spend it once, so you better do it right the first time😉

Cheers, (other) Gijs
 

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PeterPS

MEMBER
Hi Gijs,

Very useful comments, thank you! I have (also) been hesitating between 8x and 10X, I was almost sure that I'll buy the 8x but now am leaning toward 10x. Any other comments that you might have about the comparison 8x vs 10x would be useful. Have you bought the FHR too?

Peter
 

Ries

Well-known member
Netherlands
I like the design detail where the rim of the edge around the focus block proceeds on the tubes towards the lens and fades away, that's beautifully done.
 

jremmons

Wildlife Biologist
I think the 10x is really going to be the sweet spot, especially if the forehead rests does what you'd want. Thanks for your thoughts Gijs.

Justin
 
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Uhu74

Well-known member
Hi Gijs,

Very useful comments, thank you! I have (also) been hesitating between 8x and 10X, I was almost sure that I'll buy the 8x but now am leaning toward 10x. Any other comments that you might have about the comparison 8x vs 10x would be useful. Have you bought the FHR too?

Peter

@dutchbirder64 Thanks, same to you😄 As a Dutchie living in Belgium the name "NL" suits us both well I suppose😉

@PeterPS, I'd strongly suggest to try them both if you get the chance. I started with the 8x without knowing, but I wasn't that impressed to be honest. It will likely be a matter of personal preference, as they are both great instruments, and you will definitely like either one of them.
My simple conclusion to choose the 10x is you actually get a 8x FOV in a 10x package.
The only "downsides" for me are the smaller exit pupil, and it's a bit more sensitive to shake.
As I mainly use them during daytime, and the pupils from my 45yo eyes aren't getting any bigger over the years, this is less relevant.
I did like the extra details I got to see with the 10x, and the image seemed more immersive than in the 8x (this is very subjective of course)

I didn't try or buy the FHR, because my local store didn't get any of them with yesterdays delivery.
However, the ergonomics make it quite easy to hold still, and the winged eyecup set helps too in that regard.

I just did some quick stargazing, and it truely performs in a spectacular way.
Stars are shown as pinpoints all the way to the very edge.
I also tried to provoke some glare/reflections by moving it around a very annoying natrium orange streetlight, and it did get some glare at certain positions. (Just like the EL10x50 did too b.t.w.)
I suppose this is almost inevitable and could be a tradeoff in favor of some other qualities where it excels.
Ease of view is one of Swarovski trademarks/assets.

So far I am really happy with it, and I'm sure this one will get a lot of use.

Regards, Gijs
 

Dutchbirder64

Well-known member
What I really like most is the way it suits the human hands as a birder. It is really ergonomical well thought. Bright and extremely sharp viewing comparing to my old bins. Can’t compare to an EL although.
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Chosun: Many people have used 10x for birding for years. I know my former boss used the 10x B&L Elites for all of his field survey work, and he was the best birder I've ever met. I have used 10xs with 300-330' and don't have any major problem following small birds in the canopy, though I prefer 8-9x most of the time due to a reduction in eye strain & image shake.

Justin

Justin, one of the things I have disliked about a 10x is the limited Fov. Even the current leaders (for glasses wearers) at 120m have issues. The most annoying for me is the inability to see both of the pair of circling raptors (even tightly circling Little Eagles). My 140m 8x cuts the mustard nicely in that regard, even though at times little geewhizzits have disappeared out of even it's Fov while flitting about between canopies.

I'm hoping the 133m of the 10x NL will pass the raptor test. It will be what it will be on the small birds in the canopy ....

Think I need a full on custom jobbie :)
I figure a 9x version of the NL's would possibly be 146m Fov - which with the sharp to the edge view would be the bees knees !
May as well fix up the weight, focus speed, and a few other things while we're at it :)






Chosun :gh:
 

The BulbMogul

Well-known member
Justin, one of the things I have disliked about a 10x is the limited Fov. Even the current leaders (for glasses wearers) at 120m have issues. The most annoying for me is the inability to see both of the pair of circling raptors (even tightly circling Little Eagles). My 140m 8x cuts the mustard nicely in that regard, even though at times little geewhizzits have disappeared out of even it's Fov while flitting about between canopies.

I'm hoping the 133m of the 10x NL will pass the raptor test. It will be what it will be on the small birds in the canopy ....

Think I need a full on custom jobbie :)
I figure a 9x version of the NL's would possibly be 146m Fov - which with the sharp to the edge view would be the bees knees !
May as well fix up the weight, focus speed, and a few other things while we're at it :)






Chosun :gh:

always a reason not to shell out USD$3000.00.. ! They will sell many many of these NL Pure no matter what all the chatter that comes from the online pro experts..
 

The BulbMogul

Well-known member
These NL PURES are going to sell extremely well for years to come no matter what the online experts have to say as many buyers like me do not use a internet opinion on something if were set to Kenny up and shell out the funds.. This is typical everyone a new Camera Body, Camera lens, Binocular, Spooting Scope, Headphones, ETC ETC comes out...
 

Uhu74

Well-known member
always a reason not to shell out USD$3000.00.. ! They will sell many many of these NL Pure no matter what all the chatter that comes from the online pro experts..

Agree, people will always have things to complain about (including me), but the NL sure is a fantastic package of very nice features.

@chosun, are you really in doubt whether the 133m vs 140m will make a difference for raptor watching??? :eek!:
I bet most people can't even spot the difference if they don't have both bino's side by side.
I compared the NL's 133m FOV with my Nikon m7 8x30's 145m, and the difference looks not that big.

The focuser is fine, it will take about a quarter of a turn to go from 5 m to 500m. (my guestimation)
I don't think it is slow at all. I actually find it pretty much perfect.

I'm a bit surprised that people start speculating and drawing conclusions based on other people's opinions without even having looked through it.
Face it, the ideal binocular just doesn't exist, and likely never will.
Apologies if this sounds harsh, but I'm afraid that otherwise this thread will derail soon...

Gijs
 
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The BulbMogul

Well-known member
Agree, people will always have things to complain about (including me), but the NL sure is a fantastic package of very nice features.

@chosun, are you really in doubt whether the 133m vs 140m will make a difference for raptor watching??? :eek!:
I bet you can't even spot the difference if you don't have them side by side.
I compared the NL's 133m FOV with my Nikon m7 8x30's 145m, and the difference looks not that big.

The focuser is fine, it will take about a quarter of a turn to go from 5 m to 500m. (my guestimation)
I don't think it is slow at all. I actually find it pretty much perfect.

I'm a bit surprised that people start speculating and drawing conclusions based on other people's opinions without even having looked through it.
Face it, the ideal binocular just doesn't exist, and likely never will.
Apologies if this sounds harsh, but I'm afraid that otherwise this thread will derail soon...

Gijs

agree also with you 110%..No matter what is on the market and brand new you get the same from cameras, lenses, spotting scopes, steneo equipment, watches .. Just like all the talk about Nikon D5 vas D6 and still almost impossible to buy a Nikon D6 here in States due to demand I guess...
 
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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