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Two good Nikon from the past ? (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
I'm looking at some small 8x30-style binocular, a good one optically speaking., Even if they are a bit old.
I have two in mind:
- Nikon 8x30 EII and Nikon 8x32 HG-L
Two Nikons, yes, old, yes ... but are they still worth a look?
I don't wear glasses when observing, and I don't like being black out or kidney bean ...
I would be delighted to hear your opinion
Thank you.


Well-known member
Hello Pluton,

They are both excellent binoculars. I have them both.

The 8x30 EII is a Porro Prism. It is very likely regarded as THE CLASSIC porro prism -- bar none!

See the 13 reviews of it in Allbinos in the link below! If it isn't the most reviewed binocular in Allbinos it is pretty close to it!

Nikon also named it it's Binocular of the Century during Nikon's 100th year celebration. (I confess that I bought one!o:D). i now have 3 of them!:t:


The Nikon 8x32 HG-L is still ranked high in 7th Place in Allbinos ranking of 8x32 binoculars. It has silver coated prisms unlike the dielectric coatings on the EDG that replaced it. I still use mine often.

It has received 7 individual reviews on Albinos:


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Arthur Red Rod

Well-known member
Bob has offered some great insight on both binoculars and the AllBinos reviews for both are especially good.

I had the same debate with myself and ultimately, it boiled down to the EII being a classic gem with a super wide FOV, and the LX/HG-L sacrificing some FOV for better coatings, weather-sealing and higher overall light transmission throughout the device, if I recall correctly.

I would say go with the EII if you already have a high quality, modern roof for birding and want something that can't be replicated in today's hot-ticket models. The "natural" viewing experience and field of view make the EII more of a pleasure device than strictly an observation tool, in my opinion. Of course, if your stable is lacking that exceptional roof with modern features, then go with the LX.

I chose the Monarch HG (newer brother of LX) for its modern features and warranty, but I will continue bothering my mate with the EII when we are out. One thing to also keep in mind is that Nikon does not do warranty on those binoculars anymore. Use them carefully if you get one, or you might be sent a much less interesting Monarch HG as a replacement!
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I have the original HG/LX in 8X32 and the EII, both are very nice glass. If eye relief is an issue, the HG/LX or the HG L have more than an adequate amount. If you read the review of the HG/LX on ScopeviewsUK, that will give some more insight. I also do not observe any blackouts or kidney bean with either glass, and I do not wear glasses to view also. The newer HG 8X30 (more $$$) could be another option, however I have not viewed one so cannot offer any opinions.

Andy W.


Well-known member
The 8x32 HGL are a good pair of bins - slight chromatic aberration in low light - but very worthwhile.

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Well-known member
Those two binoculars are better than a lot of the newer binoculars in their $500.00 price range. The EII is not waterproof but has a huge FOV and more 3D since it is a porro, whereas, the HG-L is waterproof but it has a smaller FOV and sharper edges and better contrast than the EII but it is heavier than the EII. You have to decide what is more important to you based on your own preferences. You can compare them on the Allbinos website but it is best to try them yourself to see which one you like the best.


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