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Feel the intensity, not your equipment. Maximum image quality. Minimum weight. The new ZEISS SFL, up to 30% less weight than comparable competitors.

Steiner Binoculars (1 Viewer)

johnhub

Relatively newbie birder
Really sorry if this has been asked before, but I have looked and Googled - honest!

As a lover of most things German (and owner of Leica and Zeiss bins) I'm intrigued about Steiner. They conspicuously don't have their own section here and I'm even more curious. All the Steiner examples I've looked at seem a bit naff - is the situation rather like Nikon, where the majority of examples are ordinary, save for the high end models?

Yours perplexedly
John
 

Pinewood

New York correspondent
United States
Really sorry if this has been asked before, but I have looked and Googled - honest!

As a lover of most things German (and owner of Leica and Zeiss bins) I'm intrigued about Steiner. They conspicuously don't have their own section here and I'm even more curious. All the Steiner examples I've looked at seem a bit naff - is the situation rather like Nikon, where the majority of examples are ordinary, save for the high end models?

Yours perplexedly
John

Hello John,

Yes.

In fact, Steiner has very few high end models, suitable for bird watching,

Happy bird watching,
Arthur Pinewood
 

Leif

Well-known member
They do have a high end model which is supposed to be alpha grade, but mostly made from Chinese components according to comments in the forums. I have never used it, so my comments should be taken as second hand. I had a very bad experience with Steiner, a 10x40 roof prism bin, it was not good. I find the styling of their roof prism offerings is a turn off, they are very tacky looking. They don't seem to have captured the birding market.
 

FrankD

Well-known member
The Discovery is a very good model and really the only Steiner model that I tried and warmed up to...considerably. I believe it was called the Peregrine XP here in the states.

I had the opportunity to give it a brief test run around the same time that the Zen Ray ED2 series was introduced. I compared the two side by side along with a few of the Alpha models that I had on hand at the time (Swaro EL 8.5x42, Zeiss 7x42 FL). It has been about four or five years now so I can't comment based on my limited memory of the comparison. However, what I do remember is that I thought the optical performance was definitely on par with the ZR ED2s and possibly better in a few optical areas. I thought it was entirely comparable with the Swaro and only a little bit behind the Zeiss, again, in a few optical areas.

SteveC was very fond of them...particularly the ergonomics.
 

statestat

Well-known member
The low light level performance of the 44 Peregrine XP is so good maybe they meant it to be used for viewing bats, Ha. I need the extra eye relief they provided, and liked the solid construction and ergonomics in addition to the great view. Had a minor issue with the objective lens cover retaining ring and the warranty service was also very good, fixed it no charge quickly. Wish they made a 30 version I would buy it. Everyone who looks through them is impressed.
 

David in NC

Well-known member
I have ALWAYS wanted to like Steiner and even ordered a semi-expensive pair once but returned them. I haven't looked through a Peregrine XP but much of their line is designed around Individual Focus or "Sports Auto Focus" so that once focused then they are "in focus" for many objects without adjustment. This is great in theory but as birders we will never be happy with the lack of tack sharp focus from this system.

Looking at their images on major dealer's websites, you can see that many models of porros have no focus wheel...

Handy for military or police use (their niche market in fairness) but not for birding.
 

coolhand68

Well-known member
I have a pair of their Wildlife Pro 8x30 and the center sharpness is as good as it gets. Brightness, sharpness, contrast are right on par with Nikon E series porros, and several higher end roofs I've compared them to such as Nikon LX, Pentax SP and ED, Bushnell Elite ED. Where they lose ground is edge sharpness. I would say they are great to about 60% and then image sharpness falls off noticeably. I got mine on sale for $300 and they are a nice porro for that price. Durable, waterproof, and lightweight.
 

CharleyBird

Well-known member
England
Couple of questions:
supposed to be alpha grade, but mostly made from Chinese components according to comments in the forums
Interesting as I have two pairs of 10x44. I've never seen these comments, and would be grateful if you could point me towards them please?
(A lot of things may originate in China but construction plays a great part in quality; as in the majority of German piano components which originate worldwide, I have a Bluthner "german made", yet the iron frame holding the strings was probably made over the border in a Czech foundary for example, the wood and chipboard comes from a timber merchant which probably got them from the far east etc etc it's as German as my Chinese wife is Malaysian, yet who speaks English better than I do).

There is no doubt that Zeiss and Swaro have better optics, however the conclusions on table 1Eof this test:
http://home.europa.com/~telscope/Ginkel.2010.Test.42mm.binoculars.pdf
made me laugh.
The Steiner winged eyecups are summed as ugly and impractical. To me they are a winning feature and I really miss them when using other bins. What do you think?
High price...blah blah; well I paid £600 each for mine new, bought two pairs cheaper than one pair of Zeiss.

As soon as someone rates ergonomics and value for money, there will be differences of opinion.
Final question..is the optically best 8x binocular still the Zeiss 8x56FL?
 

hinnark

Well-known member
The Steiner winged eyecups are summed as ugly and impractical. To me they are a winning feature and I really miss them when using other bins. What do you think?

I agree. The eyecups of Steiners's Discovery and Nighhunter binoculars are very useful because they provide two functions in one piece, without the need to exchange the eyecups if the user wants to switch under certain circumstances, e.g. when using sunglasses. With many other binoculars a winged version isn't available at all or one has to exchange the eyecups completely, like with Nikon EDG and Swaro EL and SLC bins. OK, with the Nikons one only has to push the winged eycups over the eyepieces. But this solution doesn't convince me either because the winged eyecups are always in danger to get lost in the field.

Steve
 
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Jumbo

Well-known member
Winged eyecups are fantastic. They enhance the quality of the view in so many circumstances I'd never be without them.

Every non spectacle wearer that has used my Steiners has always commented on what a positive difference they make to the view, removing distractions and flare whilst on a cold windy day they stop your eyes from streaming. Most welcome.
 

plyscope

Andy J.
I'm a fan of Steiner winged eyecups. This picture compares Swarovski Habicht 8x30W, Nikon 8x30 EII and Steiner Commander 7x30.
 

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[email protected]

Well-known member
I'm a fan of Steiner winged eyecups. This picture compares Swarovski Habicht 8x30W, Nikon 8x30 EII and Steiner Commander 7x30.

Andy

I've just had a glimpse through the Commander XP 7x30 but the build quality and optics seemed first rate and I'm thinking about purchasing the 7x30 for my "official" kayak/fishing binocular. Like you I'm a fan of a well designed winged eyecups and I remember the eyecups on the Steiner I looked through were very similar to winged version used on the Pentax PIF series which are superb.

Steve
 

james holdsworth

Consulting Biologist
I find that winged eyecups prevent air circulation in winter, causing lens fogging.

My 10x56 Night Owl will only last about 20 seconds of viewing in the cold before they start to fog.
 

hinnark

Well-known member
I find that winged eyecups prevent air circulation in winter, causing lens fogging.

My 10x56 Night Owl will only last about 20 seconds of viewing in the cold before they start to fog.


That is not the case with the Steiner eyecups, probably because there are still some small gaps that allow enough air circulation to prevent the fogging.

Steve
 

hinnark

Well-known member
Winged eyecups are fantastic. They enhance the quality of the view in so many circumstances I'd never be without them.

Every non spectacle wearer that has used my Steiners has always commented on what a positive difference they make to the view, removing distractions and flare whilst on a cold windy day they stop your eyes from streaming. Most welcome.

I agree. The view with such shaped eyecups is an intensive experience, just like viewing with some kind of camera eye. A more concentrated view, without any distraction.

Steve
 
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