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Simple Contrast/Comparison: Leica Trinovid HD vs Tract Toric UHD (10x42's) (1 Viewer)

Rob from Texas

Well-known member
I pulled the string on the CameraLandNy damaged box Trinovid HD deal. Cost was $849.99, no tax.
I had previously bought their "demo" Kowa and they turned out to be in new, pristine condition.
Not so much with the Trinovid deal. The ocular lens were smudged with finger prints and the objective lens had tiny splatters on them.
They seemed to clean up ok, ...but I'm not wild about having to wipe the lens.

Anyway, onward to the comparison of two of the (in my limited experience) better mid-priced 10x42's.

Initial View
This goes to the Trinovid. Very easy to place up to my eyes for a fully oriented and inviting view. The tracts are fine as well, just takes that extra second or two to mentally adjust and relax into the view.

Sharpness
Trinovid wins this, but barely. Both are very sharp, but the Trinovid seems to snap in perfect focus with a bit less effort.

Contrast
Trinovid wins. Extra contrast came out in small places, like bird legs, pine cones etc.

Color
Trin....ahha! Not so fast. The Tracts won this one. I was able to observe variations of color in palm tree trunks with Tracts. Of course, I would confirm them with the Trinovids. It was just that I would notice them first with the Tracts.
The neighbors roses were also a smidge more vivid with the Tracts.

Twilight Images
Tract wins here. Toric makes a point that their "flat spectrum" coatings help at twilight and they do. I was able to get more detail earlier with the Torics. So, to me, Tract wins on details in twilight, but Trinovid wins the rest of the day,...but again barely. I'd be happy with either, any time of day.

Field Of View
Very close. The Tracts are 6.5 degree and the Leica's post a 355 ft. view. (what's that? about 6.3 degrees?) Anyway, I for one, cannot discern the minor difference in FOV. Both are slightly above average, (if you don't count the new Swaro NL 10x42).

Sweet Spot
Very non-scientific guess based on my view point. To me,...it looks as though the Tract is about 80% sweet spot with a gentle roll off towards the edge. The Trinovid sweet spot is slightly bigger (85-90%?), but has a more visible roll off. Both are fine by me, as in use, I fail give notice to either one. Both handle it very well.

Glare
I tested them both at night and day. This is the second time testing the Tract and it seems damn near glare proof. I pushed the Trinovids hard on a street light to finally get some flaring, but I have very little plans to feature mercury vapor street lights as my subjects anyway.

Size
Tract has 1/4" longer barrels and 3/4" taller cups,..so yeah it's about an inch taller overall than the Leica's. Have to admit, the Leicas feel better in the hand.

Build features
Both have great feeling focus wheels. Both very firm and smooth. Leica's have initial roll back I hear,...but whoever groped mine before I purchased it, evidently smoothed it out.

The Tracts have a locking diopter. The Leica's have tremendous range on either side of neutral. Both are smooth. As for myself, as long as the diopter ring is firm, I don't really use the lock. Maybe a lock would become more important if it was integrated with the focus wheel, but these are both right barrel diopters. They are both "10's" in my book.

Eye cups. I like the large eye cups of Tracts , but then again I favor the robust, hidden adjustment mechanism of the Leica's. I can't argue with 5 very solid click stops. Advantage Leica.

The armor of both pair feels great. The Leica's armor feels thicker, at least to me. I'll really love it when it quits stinking (more on that in next section).

The Tract is 1.75 ounces heavier, but I cant feel it. It's more that the Leica is shorter and feels better holding it up to view.

I guess too, It appears the Leica has no frills, yet everything is smooth and firm. It exudes a simple robust build. Nothing against the Tracts, they seem fine, just one notch down in build maybe.

Accessories
The Tracts come with no bag. However, the Leica bag makes me wish it had come with no bag as well. That bag is a curse. It stinks to high heaven. It's some small, wanna-be-stylish, minimal thing made of lycra and latex. I can't tell you how much it smelled. Left it's odor on the binoculars. Right now it's in the garage. I might check on it next year.

Rain guards slightly tighter and deeper on the Leica's. Advantage Leica. Objectives cover about the same on both pair (with the barrel rings etc.)
Oh, and both include a padded strap,... which I won't use after making several harnesses that are more comfortable and functional.

Bottom Line
The Leicas seem a slightly better build. They feel a tad handier. But, the Tracts are equally brilliant in view. However, I like the Trinovid's more for a particular reason. I have degrading vision in my right eye. The Trinovids compensate for the condition better. I could love the Tract view all day. It's just that when I pick it up and find a subject, I'm reminded that the right barrel will never really be sharp for me. It's not the barrel, because I can flip it, and then the left barrel fails to adjust to sharpness for me. Other bino's work for my issue, my original MIJ Vipers work and these new Trinovids work. So obviously the Trinovids are a keeper (stink and all). The tracts need to find a new home. They ARE worthy of one. Great view.
 
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jring

Well-known member
Field Of View
Very close. The Tracts are 6.5 degree and the Leica's post a 355 ft. view. (what's that? about 6.3 degrees?)

Hi,

thanks for the comparison!

355 ft / 1000 yd are 6.8 deg - divide by 52.5. For non-freedom units aka m/1000m divide by 17.45 for degrees.

Could you focus out the fuzzy edge on either example, so that it was just field curvature or was it permanent (and thus other off axis aberrations)?

Joachim
 

Rob from Texas

Well-known member
I don't know for sure. I know 2 things though. 1) Even starting from scratch, I cannot get a true focus with my right eye. 2) I tried the brand new Kowa Genesis and it did the same thing. (Sometimes it's not the vending machines, sometimes it's the quarter....(my right eye).
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
I recently was looking for a mid-priced 10x42 roof prism, so I tried the Tract Toric, Leica Trinovid, Zeiss Conquest HD, Swarovski SLC and the new Meopta Meopro Air. The Meopro Air was the best for me followed by the SLC, Trinovid, Conquest HD and the Tract last. The Meopro Air is amazingly good for a $1K binocular. It is sharp right to the edge, whereas, none of the other binoculars were. The Tract is especially soft at the edges. The Meopro Air has the same open bridge design as the Swarovski EL and is equal in build quality. It is essentially a Swarovski EL for 1/2 the price.
 

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tenex

reality-based
Color Trin....ahha! Not so fast. The Tracts won this one. I was able to observe variations of color in palm tree trunks with Tracts. Of course, I would confirm them with the Trinovids. It was just that I would notice them first with the Tracts.
What would this quality be called: color contrast? It's interesting and not much discussed. The Leica Ultravid, if you ever try it, is superb at this. I had the same experience comparing it to their earlier Trinovid BN, of seeing subtle differences in color better. It's nice, though not a deal-breaker in comparison.
I could love the Tract view all day. It's just that when I pick it up and find a subject, I'm reminded that the right barrel will never really be sharp for me. It's not the barrel, because I can flip it, and then the left barrel fails to adjust to sharpness for me.
This sounds to me like a consequence of the difference you described in how the Leica "snaps" to focus better than the Tract, aggravated by weakness in your right eye. It needs that "snap". (Presumably due to better-controlled aberrations?)
 

Rob from Texas

Well-known member
Yeah, thanks for the interest by the way. I can imagine those of you with alpha's are probably yawning. I think binos are probably like guitars or motorcycles...something to work your way up at your own speed.
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
Yeah, thanks for the interest by the way. I can imagine those of you with alpha's are probably yawning. I think binos are probably like guitars or motorcycles...something to work your way up at your own speed.
I have had alphas and I am not yawning. At the $1K price point you get about 95% of the performance of an alpha. I have moved back down to mid-priced binoculars because they have a better price/performance ratio.
 

tenex

reality-based
I have had alphas and I am not yawning. At the $1K price point you get about 95% of the performance of an alpha. I have moved back down to mid-priced binoculars because they have a better price/performance ratio.
By "mid-priced" Dennis presumably (it's so hard to keep track) still means his SLC 42 at ~$1500 which many including me would consider actually alpha, while the amount he's spent and lost buying and reselling hundreds of bins up to and including NL makes claims of parsimony utterly ridiculous. In any case, value for money and diminishing returns are entirely personal perceptions about which general claims cannot legitimately be made. Whatever makes sense to you is right for you at the time, just as Rob said, and with no worries about anyone yawning. Enjoy the Trinovid.

(For what it's worth, the rubber strap on my Bog gear tripod adapter smelled terrible but after six months in the garage it's fine.)
 

mwhogue

Well Known Member
Supporter
Well, good news on the horizon. I'll be going on an eight day camping spree on a private preserve and Big Bend National park next week. I'm taking both pair, so that should really shake out a good comparison !

Rob, Big Bend is my binocular heaven. If you have not been before, feel free to PM me and I will give you some thoughts on which trails etc. you might enjoy most depending on how long you will be there and your preferences etc.

Mike
 

Rob from Texas

Well-known member
well, I ruled out that the right barrel on the Toric Tracts is defective in anyway. I used them flipped over and the right barrel is razor fricking sharp to my left eye (using the diopter to focus).

Ofc, that doesnt rule out a Diopter "wander" using the main focus wheel.
 

Troubador

Moderator
Staff member
Supporter
Yeah, thanks for the interest by the way. I can imagine those of you with alpha's are probably yawning. I think binos are probably like guitars or motorcycles...something to work your way up at your own speed.
One thing reviewing binos has taught me is you can have great nature observing experiences with very inexpensive binos, just as you can make great sounds with a Yamaha Pacifica electric guitar instead of a Fender USA Stratocaster, and me and Troubadoris had as many great times on Hondas as we did on BMWs. You just need to focus on the experience and not get too bewitched by the brand of bino/guitar/motorbike itself.

Lee
 

Upland

Well-known member
I sold eitanaltman here a pair of the first generation Torics and he had some type of problem with both barrels focusing together ? I think. I had never noticed it myself but Tract sent him a pair of the new generation in exchange. You might ask him about it as I’m not sure exactly what it was. BTW it speaks well of Tract standing behind their products that they replaced them.
 

Rob from Texas

Well-known member
Yup, yup, Tract is very responsive to their customers. And,...these are the exact new pair sent to Eitan. I gladly bought them. They have an amazing view. I think for someone with better overall vision these would be a "one and done".
 

dries1

Member
I had an 8X42 that was inspected and determined that it was OK, however I could never get both tubes to focus simultaneously, so I got a refund. The 10X42s seem OK, so far so good.
 

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