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The mistake of buying an Ultravid HD+ 7x42 (3 Viewers)

jafritten

Well-known member
Jafritten, sorry I have not been clear and specific enough. What I would most like to know about the Leica Uv. 7x42 is what is copied in your post #37 and answered by you in it! The Uv. 7x42, then, does give (you) that experience. Thank you.

What I would most like to know from a comparison of it with the Kowa YF 6x30 is whether the Uv. 7x42 is close to it in that experience.
Adhoc, I will compare the two as soon as I can and I will let you know what I think. What I can say now is that the Leica experience is much nicer. Not only because of the qualities one would expect from a Leica but also because of the higher magnification. I agree wholeheartedly with Eitan when he says things often seemed too small through the Leupold/Kowa. I think a 7x strikes a good balance between DOF and magnification.

Something else crossed my mind: The stereoscopic effect of the porro design may add to what you like about the Kowa. From what I can recall the effect is not markedly stronger compared to the Leica but it should be there. So, maybe what you'd really like is a 7x porro?
 

mwhogue

Well Known Member
Supporter
Adhoc, I will compare the two as soon as I can and I will let you know what I think. What I can say now is that the Leica experience is much nicer. Not only because of the qualities one would expect from a Leica but also because of the higher magnification. I agree wholeheartedly with Eitan when he says things often seemed too small through the Leupold/Kowa. I think a 7x strikes a good balance between DOF and magnification.

Something else crossed my mind: The stereoscopic effect of the porro design may add to what you like about the Kowa. From what I can recall the effect is not markedly stronger compared to the Leica but it should be there. So, maybe what you'd really like is a 7x porro?

Excellent points Jafritten.

Oddly it seems we do much more often mention the stereoscopic (or "3D") effect of porros when discussing higher end models but much less often in connection with lower priced models where the emphasis is on the price to performance ratio vs roof prism bins.

I agree with you, Adhoc and Eitan that 6x is not enough to be enjoyable unless it's a micro bin or one with a significantly larger FOV than standard which IME does create the impression of greater magnification. But for me even the jump to 6.5x is a noticeable improvement and especially in a model with a wider FOV like the Opticron 6.5x32 WP porro. That said, a wide angle 7x porro is probably the sweet spot/best balance given Adhoc's preferences as you suggest.

Mike
 

b-lilja

Well-known member
Yep...bought the 7x42 UVHD+s at Thanksgiving and they are going many places with me...
Superb contrast
Natural view and color (unlike Zeiss)
Low glare (unlike Swaro)
Awesome build quality
Arguably the #1 optical heritage of any optics co (along with Nikon imo)
Compact x42 handling - stable and steady
Amazing in woodlands with depth of field through brush
Better on boats than 8x - more stable

It's funny...I think Leica bins are just a fantastic value when you consider what they charge for their cameras - maybe a strange way to mention it - but to me they are the equivalent of a Rolex or a German made Mercedes - top flight.
 

Mike F

Well-known member
Yep...bought the 7x42 UVHD+s at Thanksgiving and they are going many places with me...
Superb contrast
Natural view and color (unlike Zeiss)
Low glare (unlike Swaro)
Awesome build quality
Arguably the #1 optical heritage of any optics co (along with Nikon imo)
Compact x42 handling - stable and steady
Amazing in woodlands with depth of field through brush
Better on boats than 8x - more stable

It's funny...I think Leica bins are just a fantastic value when you consider what they charge for their cameras - maybe a strange way to mention it - but to me they are the equivalent of a Rolex or a German made Mercedes - top flight.

You probably know this, but Leica used to sell the 7x42 BA in blue rubber armour and market it as their marine binocular!
 

adhoc

Well-known member
Jafritten, Mike, thank you. The reason why this response is delayed is explained below.

Well. The Leica Uv. 7x42 does seem to give what I am looking for, that I experienced with the 6x30 Kowa YF, from what B-lilja says in these words: "depth of field through brush". Seems to me that this might have been described even better as depth "across" brush, to convey that detail (birds, etc.) within the flora which that view cuts through is also adequately in focus.

That, and the benefit of 7x vs 6x magnification which Eitan, Jafritten, and Mike have highlighted, mean the Leica Uv. 7x42 is right for me, then!

Jafritten, Mike, with regard to the benefit of porro vs roof, unfortunately, it appears that of the 7x porros with good optics all are 7x50, and thus too large and heavy (for me), and only the Fujinon FMT-SX is comparable optically to the Leica Uv. Also, I had thought (and I may be wrong here) that the stereo/3D effect of porro vs roof is seen only across a very small range of depth, such as a branch or trunk, and not (anywhere near) all of the depth a 7x provides in the image.

Now the reason for the delay. Since the time (1½ years ago) I found the Opticron Discovery 7x42 disappointing my vision has become clearer. Stupidly I did not consider fully at the time the problem now remedied. So, now, I thought I would try it out again. It was still with the friend to whom it was given to sell. (And this points up something else I had said earlier, the difficulty or impossibility of reselling, even selling new, a pricey or an unusual-spec. binocular in these parts of the world!) Amidst covid restrictions it took a bit of time to fetch it back from him.

Now that I can see better/well, the Opticron Discovery 7x42 is amazingly good! Unbelievably good at 1/10 the price of the Leica (as here). It was picked for me in Britain by a discerning friend with a (formal) connection with Opticron and so may be a "cherry". Even a cherry though can be only so much better than typical! With these travel restrictions I won't be able to test it in woodland, or compare it (more) thoroughly with my Zeiss 8x(25), for a while. From what is seen so far it is, of course, not quite as good as the Zeiss, in sharpness, color rendition, CA suppression, brightness, but definitely good enough (for me) in all these parameters for bird watching and observation, and to give me the same delight that the Kowa YF 6x30 did. The ergonomics work fine for me.

So, might even keep it, and not go for a Leica Uv. 7x42! Also, I have not been content with the color rendition of the several Leicas I have viewed through till now, and am concerned that the Uv. 7x42 might be likewise, so maybe should somehow try it out first. Less than perfect rendition is (to me) fine at 1/10th but not at this price!

Also, from my new (still pretty limited!) experience with the Opticron I would venture to guess that to most users the Leica Uv. 7x42 (optically superior to this) will convey all the detail that the best 8x42s will.

Jafritten, thanks, looking forward to reading about that comparison!
 

eitanaltman

Well-known member
Color rendition tends to be consistent across brands in the same “era”. If you previously didn’t like the color rendering of other modern Leicas, don’t expect anything different from the 7x42.

“Perfect” is a tough standard as even the expensive binoculars don’t get there.

Regardless, enjoy that Opticron! Finding an inexpensive hidden gem is always a fun time!
 

jafritten

Well-known member
Adhoc, I've just compared the 7x42 to the 6 power Kowa. I found that within a range of, say, 5-10 meters viewing distance, the 6x holds the edge over the 7x in terms of depth of focus. From 10 meters to infinity I couldn't detect any difference. It should be taken into account that your individual accommodation ability plays an important role here. I am not an expert on physics but I think that any 7x will have the same depth of focus. So, you could use your Opticron 7x to see for yourself. Both the Leica and the Kowa show a very nice immersive effect. Difficult to say, which binocular is better in that respect. I'd probably go with the Leica for its greater magnification. Apart from its greater DOF it is the stereoscopic effect of the Kowa that is clearly a plus for the porro.
 

adhoc

Well-known member
Eitan, I do think that (and worry) about Leica's color rendition. It is "too warm" for me, and a bit too unnatural, contra, say, Zeiss. Objectively, it does not separate, e.g., browns of bark as well as certrain other makes.

But some reviewers, both experts and those without much experience of diverse models (from both of whom impressions are useful) comment or imply that it is neutral enough, e.g. Roger Vine/Scopeviews. I have wondered whether the 7x42 is different in this from the other Ultravids. The Scopeviews review suggests that its optical design may be different from theirs.

Sorry I have not written correctly, or clearly enough, a sentence to which you have responded! When I said, "Less than perfect rendition is (to me) fine at 1/10th but not at this price!" I meant, fine at the price of the Opticron but not at the price of the Leica!

Jafritten, thank you for carrying out that comparison--I hope you liked doing that!--and the very useful information. That depth of focus is about what I need in woodland. Actually, I had forgotten about accommodation, and I am now on the downhill side! The stereo effect is indeed a plus in the porro, across whatever range of depth it is discerned to occur.

Meantime I continue to be happy with the Opticron. I am now at the stage of looking for trouble, after the initial pleasure. So far only CA in difficult situations has bothered me.
 

eitanaltman

Well-known member
Don’t expect any difference. Leica is Leica, they have a warm, vivid, saturated color presentation. That’s their thing.

It’s funny how subjective some of this is, because hearing you contrast to Zeiss as “natural” makes me shake my head. I find Leica colors far more natural, as Zeiss bins have a green lean which I find quite off putting. Unfortunate because I really like a lot of Zeiss binoculars otherwise.

Your writing about price was perfectly clear, I understand exactly what you mean. My point was many expensive binoculars are also imperfect. The idea that Zeiss color rendition is perfect but Leica’s is not is, frankly, laughable! Both are imperfect in different ways. Swaro is objectively more neutral as the transmission is flatter, but still not “perfect”.
 

adhoc

Well-known member
Eitan, thanks for the heads-up.

By saying color rendition in Leica is (to me) "too unnatural, contra, say, Zeiss" I don't mean that it's natural in Zeiss! The implication is that it's unnatural in both, in Leica to a degree that bothers me, in Zeiss not. I don't think it's perfect/"perfect" in Zeiss (in case you meant me there, not sure).

Color rendition works for me in this way. Two requirements. It has to convey colors correctly. This may be after some subconscious adjustment. It has to be pleasing to me. Considering both those factors, to me the "four alphas" rank, in color rendition, Nikon, Zeiss, Swaro., Leica. The "vivid"-ness (your word) of the (superb) optics in Leica Ultravid gives me a feeling of "enhanced reality" of a kind which is not pleasing, a feeling which I do find pleasing in a rendition different from that of Leica. Objectively there have been instances (very few though) like the one above with tree bark.

• LucaPCP, others, I am mindful that the point in this thread is the merits of the Leica Ultravid-HD-Plus 7x42. Sorry if I turned it away too much from that! I really intended to expand on that, in particular the benefits of 7x.
 
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Mike F

Well-known member
Color rendition works for me in this way. Two requirements. It has to convey colors correctly. This may be after some subconscious adjustment. It has to be pleasing to me. Considering both those factors, to me the "four alphas" rank, in color rendition, Nikon, Zeiss, Swaro., Leica.
Wow, we really are all different. I'm not familiar enough with Zeiss to offer an informed opinion, but of those I am familiar with I would rank them Leica, Nikon, Swaro in terms of pleasing view (taking into account colour rendition, contrast etc). I would accept though that Leica is as divisive of peoples opinions as any of the others and is therefore not, by any definition, the most 'natural'.

Is the 'vividness' of the Leica 7x42 UVHD+ an enhancement of reality? Is its colour rendition also an enhancement? I think those things will be personal, but if one was looking for an explanation of its undoubted popularity, one might say that if those things are facts then they don't diminish its appeal in any way.
 
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adhoc

Well-known member
Mike F, I had thought that the "vividness" was a result of the color rendition. My reasoning: Leica color rendition -> vividness -> enhanced reality. Maybe I assumed wrong and the vividness in Leica is due, or due also, to factors other than its color rendition? Leaving out contrast as a factor in my last few posts was just by oversight, sorry. I don't think I am terribly alone with this idea about Leica!
 

SeldomPerched

Well-known member
People must be so different. I have been told by more than one sales assistant that they preferred Swarovski EL for the warmer than Leica colours... poor old me thought that EL was a bit on the blue side (fine), Swarovski SLC on the warmer/yellowish side (fine), Leica reddish (fine), Zeiss sometimes green (fine - I adjust to it quickly). When out in the field, luckily after many years I still can't quite believe that it's possible to see nature so close up; every time of going out and looking feels like that first, exciting time of ever using binoculars, and so colours are enjoyed for their warmth and also for their coolness, as the case may be. In fact it's nice to have a change and see what each offers, even if acclimatization takes place pretty rapidly each time so that it all becomes a non-issue. That's my finding but I'd be interested if the differences bother others, even as much as to really spoil the viewing experience.

Tom
 

Conndomat

United States of Europe
Europe
People must be so different. I have been told by more than one sales assistant that they preferred Swarovski EL for the warmer than Leica colours... poor old me thought that EL was a bit on the blue side (fine), Swarovski SLC on the warmer/yellowish side (fine), Leica reddish (fine), Zeiss sometimes green (fine - I adjust to it quickly).

Tom
Hi Tom,

we are looking through the binoculars with the same eyes ...;)

Andreas
 

CharleyBird

Well-known member
England
Fortunate here to have both Zeiss and Leica 7x42, I'd comment that if it's getting dark I use the Zeiss FL for the two reasons, firstly as Conndomat says, it's a tad brighter, and secondly when it's late evening/dark you don't notice its CA/purple fringing.
For daytime use though, the Leica UV+ is for me
 

adhoc

Well-known member
Tom, very well explained! I go along with all you say there except that I am one of those people in your last sentence and the difference does bother that much, with Leica, for reasons given above--still confining this to the "four alphas" for simplicity. Then there is this question: for such a person, is what bothers, all or some of the time, what we are actually seeing or what we are worrying we are seeing? Self-diagnosis and cure has not been possible in this patient!

CharleyBird, could you please comment (briefly is fine), or direct me to a thread/post/s commenting, on CA in Leica Ultravid 7x42 vs Zeiss Victory 7x42? This is in case I do pursue the Leica. Thanks.
 

CharleyBird

Well-known member
England
Briefly, I don't see CA using the Leica during the day, but in the same conditions e.g. when there is contrast between a building and sky there is obvious increasing fringing towards the edges of the Zeiss image.
Looking at a bird in the centre of the image during the day you would simply be choosing between the 'warmer' Leica or 'cooler' Zeiss, and depending on the weather you might change your preference.
However away from the centre of the image, the Leica is better.
 

SeldomPerched

Well-known member
Tom, very well explained! I go along with all you say there except that I am one of those people in your last sentence and the difference does bother that much, with Leica, for reasons given above--still confining this to the "four alphas" for simplicity. Then there is this question: for such a person, is what bothers, all or some of the time, what we are actually seeing or what we are worrying we are seeing? Self-diagnosis and cure has not been possible in this patient!

CharleyBird, could you please comment (briefly is fine), or direct me to a thread/post/s commenting, on CA in Leica Ultravid 7x42 vs Zeiss Victory 7x42? This is in case I do pursue the Leica. Thanks.
Thank you for your comments, adhoc; much appreciated. This might help concerning the Z V 7x42 FL. All in all it is well-known for being very free of CA, going by the following (which may be a bit behind the times but still well worth using to keep things in perspective. You may well have looked at this site before but this article is an encouraging thumbs up for the bin by someone who is demanding and likes Leica, Nikon, Fuji, Swarovski etc etc.

Zeiss Victory 7x42 FL Review The various optical aspects are covered, including CA, for which the Victory gets high praise. Interestingly, in the comparison at the bottom of the article Roger suggests that the 8x32 FL has even less CA. Hope this helps!

Afterthought: I'm not disputing CharleyBird's own findings but I don't notice them, probably because (A) I am not as experienced a viewer; (B) I tend only to use the edges for context, hence edge features such as astigmatism also don't bother me though I know the Leica and Nikon EDG views are exceptionally easy in their 7x42s.

In a way I guess my approach is both fussy and not too bothered: how can that make sense?

Tom
 
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Conndomat

United States of Europe
Europe
Hello everyone,

I also had the Zeiss FL 7x42 in use for some time and compared to the Leica 7x42 it has less CA.
In my opinion, the FL binoculars have few problems with CA, with the Leica a bit more noticeable but not yet disturbing!

Nevertheless, the Leica UV 7x42 is the more comfortable binoculars for me, the distortion is much lower and does not set in so early, the edge sharpness is also better and the glass does not have as much and clear astigmatism.


In a later evaluation of the Zeiss HT, Roger Vine put his good evaluation of the Zeiss FL 7x42 into perspective again, he found the severe distortion increasingly annoying.

Andreas
 

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