• BirdForum is the net's largest birding community dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE!

    Register for an account to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Swarovski SLC. Zeiss Conquest Nikon MHG and Vortex Razors 10x42 (1 Viewer)

dries1

Member
I think many of the new glass coming out with the larger diameter eye-cups are catered to the user with eyeglasses (coupled with the offerings of longer eye relief). Especially useless on many of those, the last extension segment on the eye-cups. For me large diameter eye cups are out, Kowa, Tract, and a few others. If the eye-cups don't fit it will never be legit.

Andy W.
 
Last edited:

giosblue

Well-known member
Just noticed this, lying on the bed watching the telly, thought I would check out the close focussing. On the window sill we have a square porcelain pot, with a circle pattern on it, it's about 6in square and flat on all sides. When I use the SLCs, the pot looks quite dished, with the Vortex it flat.
It's also dished with the two small Nikon bins I have, but not as much. Don't see it in normal use though, so it wouldn't bother me.

Do Swarovski build in this amount of pin cushion to give their bins a subtle 3D effect?. I did get the feeling of more depth in the view with the SLC's over the razors.
 

giosblue

Well-known member
This is from S&S archery review.

Mid-Day Glassing: During the sunny mid-day testing, it was difficult to tell any difference between the two. Without putting them on a tripod, you would be hard pressed to see a difference at all. Both were crisp, clear, and produced true colors. The two do have a slightly different color temperature, but this is less noticeable during mid-day glassing.

Pretty much what I found.

Xlr8n

Quote:
Originally Posted by giosblue View Post
Who says the latest SLC were designed more as an hunting binocular?
Was it Swarovski ?
Yes.
Can you post me link to this please, I can't find where Swarovski say the SLC is designed more as an hunting binocular.
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
I think many of the new glass coming out with the larger diameter eye-cups are catered to the user with eyeglasses (coupled with the offerings of longer eye relief). Especially useless on many of those, the last extension segment on the eye-cups. For me large diameter eye cups are out, Kowa, Tract, and a few others. If the eye-cups don't fit it will never be legit.

Andy W.
That depends on the diameter and depth of your eye sockets or your personal physiology. I have shallow big eye sockets, so I like the bigger eye cups better in general. It aids me in matching the eye relief of the binocular to my eyes, so I do not get blackouts. Really it is all about how well the binocular matches your face and what your preferences are. The Kowa fits me pretty well.
 
Last edited:

dries1

Member
I was just stating that the wider ones do not work for me, not for someone else. However it does appear that eye cup design is more for the eyeglass viewer. The glass from L,Z,S and N all do a great job with eye-cup design, then again they are the best and more expensive manufacturers.

Andy W.
 

jremmons

Wildlife Biologist
I was just stating that the wider ones do not work for me, not for someone else. However it does appear that eye cup design is more for the eyeglass viewer. The glass from L,Z,S and N all do a great job with eye-cup design, then again they are the best and more expensive manufacturers.

Andy W.

I believe when I asked the advantages of larger diameter eyecups/occular lenses, I was told by someone with more knowledge on optics than I that it helped create wider fields of view with long eye-relief. So it would make sense that for some users, wider eyepieces would not be a positive.

Justin
 

eitanaltman

Well-known member
Well, let's not conflate eyecups with oculars. Larger oculars are of required to get a wide field of view with good eye relief, and of course ocular size is to some extent correlated with eyecup size... but it really only sets the minimum internal diameter. It doesn't have anything to do with the shape of the eyecup beyond that.

For example, I recently had both the Zeiss Conquest HD 10x32 and Kowa Genesis 10x33. The Conquest HD has huge oculars, quite a bit larger than those of the Kowa. However, the eyecup design of the Zeiss has a nice taper to the outer edge, whereas the Kowa Genesis eyecup is more straight-sided with just a bit of roundover at the end.

So despite the larger oculars, because the Zeiss eyecups taper more they have a smaller outer diameter in the part that goes into the eye socket, and the "rim" of the eyecup (the part that touches your face) is also smaller in diameter.

As a result, the Zeiss eyecups slip past the bridge of my nose easily and can rest in my eye sockets, whereas with the Kowas I have to use them one click down from full extension and balance them on the perimeter of my eye socket.

I think Andy's comment about the big eyecup design being favorable to eyeglass wearers was more about how that large diameter, broad "rim" allows for a large, soft area of contact between the eyecup and the lens. Whereas a smaller diameter, more narrow-rimmed eyecup may not sit as securely when pressed against the lens of the eyeglasses.
 

giosblue

Well-known member
Can anybody answer my question about the pincushion distortion on the SLC?
Is it part of the design?
 

tenex

reality-based
Can anybody answer my question about the pincushion distortion on the SLC?
Is it part of the design?
Yes, it is. There have been many threads about this in the past. Pincushion distortion is an optical trade-off against angular magnification distortion, where objects near the edge become compressed. With enough AMD, some people find panning nauseating. So pincushioning has long been standard, and Leicas still have quite a lot. I think SLCs strike an ideal balance, in fact I'm surprised you noticed it.
 

jremmons

Wildlife Biologist
Well, let's not conflate eyecups with oculars. Larger oculars are of required to get a wide field of view with good eye relief, and of course ocular size is to some extent correlated with eyecup size... but it really only sets the minimum internal diameter. It doesn't have anything to do with the shape of the eyecup beyond that.

For example, I recently had both the Zeiss Conquest HD 10x32 and Kowa Genesis 10x33. The Conquest HD has huge oculars, quite a bit larger than those of the Kowa. However, the eyecup design of the Zeiss has a nice taper to the outer edge, whereas the Kowa Genesis eyecup is more straight-sided with just a bit of roundover at the end.

So despite the larger oculars, because the Zeiss eyecups taper more they have a smaller outer diameter in the part that goes into the eye socket, and the "rim" of the eyecup (the part that touches your face) is also smaller in diameter.

As a result, the Zeiss eyecups slip past the bridge of my nose easily and can rest in my eye sockets, whereas with the Kowas I have to use them one click down from full extension and balance them on the perimeter of my eye socket.

I think Andy's comment about the big eyecup design being favorable to eyeglass wearers was more about how that large diameter, broad "rim" allows for a large, soft area of contact between the eyecup and the lens. Whereas a smaller diameter, more narrow-rimmed eyecup may not sit as securely when pressed against the lens of the eyeglasses.
Apologies, I was confusing large to assume large diameter, which would also indicate large diameter occular lenses.

Justin
 

eitanaltman

Well-known member
Can anybody answer my question about the pincushion distortion on the SLC?
Is it part of the design?

Yes, I'm sure I will be corrected if I miss a detail of Swarovski history, but until the SV series most Swaro roofs (SLC and the original EL series) had a "traditional" distortion pattern with pincushion, which seemed to be typical of the era (e.g. Leica Trinovid + Ultravid have always had pincushion) other than the Nikon HG/LX with their "field flattener" eyepiece lenses.

Swarovski changed this when they introduced the "Swarovision" EL models, which have extreme "flat" fields (almost no distortion or curvature). The side effect of eliminating pincushion to such an extreme level is that you trade off one distortion for another, namely "angular magnification distortion" (AMD) which causes the "rolling ball" effect where objects appear compressed at the edges.

The SLC never got this update, and have continued with a traditional design (pincushion w/o field flatteners). Some (myself included) believe the pincushion approach yields greater "3D depth" in the image compared to a binocular with field flatteners, which can give the impression of compressing the depth in the image. Tobias Mennle mentions this effect when contrasting the Leica Ultravid 7x42 vs the Nikon EDG 7x42. I have an EDG 10x32 as well as Leica Trinovid 10x42 (slightly more pincushion) and Ultravid HD 8x32 (a lot more pincushion) and I clearly see what he's talking about when comparing them, the Leicas have a greater sense of depth and feel more "3D" to me whereas through the EDG perspective of depth feels more flattened out.

Looking at Allbinos reviews, which rate distortion as the approximate % distance from the center to where the lines begin curving, and thus is a decent proxy for the degree of pincushion:

- Original Swaro EL 8x32 = 36%
- Original Swaro EL 10x42 = 31%
- Swaro SLC NEU 10x42 = 45%
- Swaro SLC HD 10x42 = 39%
- Swaro SLC WB 10x42 = 42%
- Zeiss Victory FL 8x32 = 56%
- Zeiss Victory FL 8x42 = 34%
- Zeiss Victory FL 10x42 = 37%
- Leica Ultravid HD 8x32 = 36%
- Leica Ultravid BR 10x42 = 59%
- Leica Ultravid HD 10x42 = 74%
- Leica Ultravid HD 8x42 = 45%

As you can see the 1st gen EL and the SLC all have good amounts of pincushion and are relatively in line with Leica Ultravid and Zeiss FL.

Now some "flat field" binoculars:

- Swaro SV 8.5x42 = 91%
- Swaro SV 10x42 = 88%
- Nikon MHG 10x42 = 92%
- Nikon EDG 10x42 = 88%
- Zeiss SF 10x42 = 98%

So, yes, there's a clear design difference between the SV models and the SLC in this respect, the SLC do not have any field flatteners and will show a more pincushion and probably also field curvature than the EL SV series.
 

eitanaltman

Well-known member
Apologies, I was confusing large to assume large diameter, which would also indicate large diameter occular lenses.

Justin

Well it's certainly a bigger problem with larger oculars, but I've found that it's not always a 1:1 correlation. Eyecups are a real "goldilocks" thing for me where they have to be just right or they annoy me, too big is a problem (I have a relatively narrow IPD + relatively wide nose) and too small as well. I think Swarovski does a good job of not having massive eyecups on the SV models despite having very large oculars, although in the case of the CL Companion models the eyecups are way too small for my taste (a big reason I couldn't get along with them and sold mine).
 

giosblue

Well-known member
Yes, it is. There have been many threads about this in the past. Pincushion distortion is an optical trade-off against angular magnification distortion, where objects near the edge become compressed. With enough AMD, some people find panning nauseating. So pincushioning has long been standard, and Leicas still have quite a lot. I think SLCs strike an ideal balance, in fact I'm surprised you noticed it.

I don't notice it when using the bins normal use, like I said the SLCs seem to have more depth to the view than the Razors, subtle, but it's there.
The Razors don't have field flattners but any pin cushion is barley noticeable. Personally, I'm not really into the technical specs of bins. If the views good I'm happy. I think I might even prefer pin cushion distortion to flat field.
 

tenex

reality-based
So the Zeiss SF actually has a flatter field than the SV? I always though the opposite.
Now we're getting into the eternal confusion between distortion and field flatness that I was trying to avoid by focusing on distortion, as the original question did. This measurement shows the SF has less pincushioning than the SV. You would have to look at a different measurement to compare field curvature, which I recall Allbinos does also include.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top