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ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

Swarovski prices going up 7%? (1 Viewer)

It may not be greed, who knows what their bottom line is, they could be losing money for all we know. It's becoming crazy expensive to make things in the EU or USA, let alone the warranty servicing they perform, also within these countries.

You wonder why Nikon EDG is less than half the price of the Swaros, there's no warrranty here in the US. I look at the extra money as paying for the warranty. If the EDG break down I'll have to pay for service. It seems like many customers buy the Swaro specifically for the warranty, if you want that kind of long-term support it costs money.

I've often thought they should offer the binos with and without warranty coverage. People that take care of their gear can save money. Users that tend to leave the binos on the roof of the car can opt to pay the extra $1000. Under the current model, the careful people are subsidizing the reckless ones :):)
 
Swarovski greed will shoot themselves in the foot. Just look at the companion Nomad, an extra grand for a wooden box and bit of bling. Zeiss is looking more and more appealing.
Your right. Swarovski should be very careful of what they want to achieve when it comes down to their profit goals. If they are not careful they will be shooting themselves some place where in the long term could be a lot more terminal than just a foot. Today comparing a high end Japan sourced Binocular costing $1,000 is getting closer and closer in Quality/Value to that $3,000 Swarovski that most birders can not even afford.
 
I am very fond of my NL Pures, but they are certainly not perfect:
  • There is no hydrophobic coating, which is actually quite annoying;
  • The lens caps are pretty terrible and had to be replaced;
  • The dioptre is not the most secure;
  • The headrest is expensive and flimsy;
  • The FieldPro attachment does not rotate on the right-hand side (I suspect because the rubber coating is slightly too thick).
All Zeiss need to do is make a slightly shorter version of their SFs, with a slightly better field of view, stay away from the issues mentioned above, and sell it at a price point of £1,800 or so, and suddenly there is no reason for anyone to buy an NL Pure.
 
Despite being a long-standing Swarovski user and advocate, I couldn't bring myself to replace my 'original' (2004) 8x32ELs with any of the newer models at current - and future - prices, even as a retirement 'treat', which I had considered. The whole birding optics market has gone mad. If I did happen to need a new pair of bins in the future, I doubt that any of the 'alpha' brands would feature on my list of potential replacements on price alone. Of course, if Leica were to come up with an 8x32 Noctivid that cut the mustard, I may be persuaded to at least have a look!

RB
 
A great deal depends on the exchange rate with your country's currency and that for the country of origin for a product. I have seen prices increase by 7-10 percent overnight for products from China when the U.S. dollar was in free fall during the Bush trillion dollar wars in the Middle East. Something similar has been happening with the British pound since Brexit.


In my opinion the best values are with binoculars in the $500 to $1200 price range and above that there is a rapidly diminishing return on ones expenditure. The only exception I have seen is with very compact binoculars where one is starting with small 20mm or 25mm objectives and other design and manufacturing constraints.

There is an emotional appeal to owning a top tier binocular and there is nothing wrong if that is important to the purchaser. Few activities are as inexpensive as birding and a once in a lifetime purchase of a $3,000 binocular is minor by comparison to many other hobbies.
 
There is an emotional appeal to owning a top tier binocular and there is nothing wrong if that is important to the purchaser. Few activities are as inexpensive as birding and a once in a lifetime purchase of a $3,000 binocular is minor by comparison to many other hobbies.
I think you're onto something here, this is how Swaro's business model works.

I've been surprised at how loyal the birding community is to Swarovski here (Massachusetts USA). Ever year the local birdwatching store has sale for 2 days where you'll find the Zeiss and Swaros at a discount, usually 10%. It's also a designated tax-free weekend by the state govt.

I wanted to support the shop, they do a lot for birdwatching, so I moved in on the sale to get Zeiss SF's. Between shopping & making the purhase I spent a hour or so in the shop. Every person I saw leaving the shop with new binos was carrying a Swaro box. I was the only Zeiss buyer. The staff and I were laughing and joking about it.

For serious birders they buy a new binocular every 5, 10, 20 years. They trust Swaro to provide them with the best, they don't seem to quibble over a few extra bucks. Or a few thousand :)
 
Something similar has been happening with the British pound since Brexit.
Not anymore. The article you cite is two years old, and you too seem to have missed the recovery in the last year.

As for ancient history, I've done the inflation calculation, and (in the US) NL pricing today is still below the level of a high-end Zeiss like the 15x60 years ago. If we correct for the strength of the DM vs $ back then (this really gets too complicated) it's probably comparable, but not more. The real price of alpha optics must actually have declined over that span, an oversight now being corrected. But surely anyone who would pay $3k for an NL can spend 3.5, so these prices don't mean something absurd is going on, just that this demographic isn't too worried about diminishing returns. Most were priced out of NLs from the start.

What does bother me is what's left of the core binoculars from Swaro or Zeiss, the motley assortment of cheapened EL or Kamakura-made SFL in some sizes and not others, after discontinuing the rest. (It's nice that Leica hasn't messed with Ultravids.)

I've concluded that the golden age of binoculars was around 2000-2010, in terms of design (for my taste), range of models, and value for money, so my attention has been drawn back to models like FL and SLC instead of the latest. Of course if I were on a tight budget I'd say it's today, due to the optical (though not mechanical) quality a few hundred bucks will now buy. And if I were wealthy I'd probably also say it's today, fondle my NL 8x32 and 12x42, and contemplate a WX just for occasional fun (they're only $4k or so bought from Japan, if you want to feel like a bargain-hunter).
 
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I am very fond of my NL Pures, but they are certainly not perfect:
  • There is no hydrophobic coating, which is actually quite annoying;
  • The lens caps are pretty terrible and had to be replaced;
  • The dioptre is not the most secure;
  • The headrest is expensive and flimsy;
  • The FieldPro attachment does not rotate on the right-hand side (I suspect because the rubber coating is slightly too thick).
All Zeiss need to do is make a slightly shorter version of their SFs, with a slightly better field of view, stay away from the issues mentioned above, and sell it at a price point of £1,800 or so, and suddenly there is no reason for anyone to buy an NL Pure.
No reason to buy an NL Pure, or EL, instead of an SF, other than the totally different contrast and color rendition.
 
SuperD, I get your point but I would add that there are as many reasons to buy x, y, or z, as there are different people. I went through a bit of a bino quest and really in the end, it wasn't about specs. It was about which bins are the ones I don't notice when I'm out birding and suddenly grab what's around my neck with one hand, while I'm trying to track the faint movement of an elusive bird. If I find myself thinking too much/little glare/shake/CA/sharpness/focus lag/whatever, then those are/are-not the bins.
The rest is academic :)
 
The FieldPro attachment does not rotate on the right-hand side (I suspect because the rubber coating is slightly too thick).
I have that with my EL 12x50. Just a minor irritation, but still.
The rubber coating is just a bit too thick on that place. I can dent it in with a screw driver for instance, but after a while it returns to its old shape.
Futhermore I love my EL 12x50!

The only small gripe I have with my NL 10x32 is it's lack of glare resistance. But it's not a real big deal.
The price difference with the NL 10x42 was also quite big, otherwise I may have gone for the 10x42 (the glare resistance of the 10x42 is maybe a bit better?) The lower weight (and the looks imo) were also pulling me in the direction of the NL 10x32.

I've been surprised at how loyal the birding community is to Swarovski here
Also here in the Netherlands. And I am infected as well. I don't know what it really is. As a small boy I already said: one day I will buy a swarovski (now I have 3 :rolleyes:). There is something very appealing about swarovskis (for me and apparently also for others). I like the looks, the green colour, the straps, the feeling. I like the customer service and that they are built in Europe (although very expensive for that reason).

If the EL 10x32 was still sold, I would have bought the EL 10x32 instead of the NL 10x32. The prices of the EL's are ok, but the prices of the NL's are crazy (and still I bought one).
I also think it is too bad they dropped selling the affordable SLC 42's. Swarovski is missing the average person lately imo. Only the CL 30's have still decent prices for an "allround" pair of binoculars and the prices are rising.
 
The SLC 42 is still produced it only got another label (Kahles), but since people seem to be attached to names, sales might not go as well as the Swarovski SLC.
Gijs van Ginkel
 
I have that with my EL 12x50. Just a minor irritation, but still.
The rubber coating is just a bit too thick on that place. I can dent it in with a screw driver for instance, but after a while it returns to its old shape.

Interestingly I have seen the same issue with the right FieldPro attachment on a few used binoculars (e.g. https://www.focalpointopticsltd.com/product-page/pre-loved-swarovski-nl-pure-8x42). I wonder if there is a common casting defect with the rubber or something.
 
Interestingly I have seen the same issue with the right FieldPro attachment on a few used binoculars (e.g. https://www.focalpointopticsltd.com/product-page/pre-loved-swarovski-nl-pure-8x42). I wonder if there is a common casting defect with the rubber or something.
1702383632942.png1702383649175.png

I think the ring of armor around the black attachment thing is just a bit too thick. At least at one site.
As you can see I already damaged the armor a bit with the screw driver. That doesn't bother me, because it is covered you cannot see it.
 

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