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What bin have you found the reviews total BS for? (1 Viewer)

CliveP

Well-known member
I'm sure this has happens quite a lot. You read the great spec and blurb from the maker and see the big rrp price, do a search around and everybody is saying oh wow these are great, millions of stars awarded (ok maybe not just so many) and so you buy a pair and they are absolute rubbish.

I used to think my Bresser Everest 8x28 was bad and it isn't good but it is passible compared to this latest crap I got.

I give you the Visionary 8x22U. Bak4 prisms, fully coated bla bla. I'm guessing they didn't tell you it has plastic lenses as that's what it seems like. I think that's how they ditched the weight.

I actually cancelled a Carson Scout 8x22 to buy it and now it turns out the optics in my Carson Mini Scout 7x18 are way better than this Visionary although the build of the Visionary is probably better. The smaller Carson is actually sharper and better resolving and brighter and with more colour/contrast and the Visionary is apparently "HD" but it can't even obtain a sharp focus. The magnification looks out also as it seems more of a 9x power.

Fooking Hell. This may be getting the hammer treatment shortly. Ok maybe that might be a bit drastic. It does have a decent large view to it but it really does lack colour/contrast/and sharpness and it isn't particulary bright either.

So the real add should read. An ok binocular if you don't really want something that's actually good.

I wonder how it is that the cheaper smaller Carson Mini Scout has so much better optics?
 
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Chicolom

Member
When shopping for new binoculars, the first pair I tried were the Celestron Nature DX 8x25. They were pretty unimpressive, and unacceptable to me. I immediately returned them, ordered the Pentax Papilio and the Kowa 6x30, and said "THAT's more like it!" when they showed up.

I had read lots of positive reviews on the Celestron Nature DX series across the Web. Most of that was probably for the 8x42 model though. I naively assumed that if one model in a line was good the rest would be of equal quality just in a different size configuration. I know now after researching more that that's not true, and binoculars from the same line /series can vary quite a bit in quality from one size configuration to the other.
 
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chill6x6

Well-known member
I would consider ANY ONE review as possible BS,
the more consistant reviews, the more accurate.

edj

Yep, that's the correct answer. One review can mean a bias in any direction and often does. Then of course one has to always consider the source.

I have to say I have not purchased a binocular in a few years that I couldn't live with. I think in the $400 range has been the least I've spent FOR some bins, so that helps with the outcome for sure. I HAVE bought binoculars based COMPLETELY on reviews...ie Vanguard Endeavor ED II. The review was pretty much spot on and well within individual taste/preferences.

On the other hand...if one just buys binoculars made by one of the brands with a good reputation for providing a quality product AND excellent customer service, I'm not sure one really NEEDS a review.
 

CliveP

Well-known member
When shopping for new binoculars, the first pair I tried were the Celestron Nature DX 8x25. They were pretty unimpressive, and unacceptable to me. I immediately returned them, ordered the Pentax Papilio and the Kowa 6x30, and said "THAT's more like it!" when they showed up.

I had read lots of positive reviews on the Celestron Nature DX series across the Web. Most of that was probably for the 8x42 model though. I naively assumed that if one model in a line was good the rest would be of equal quality just in a different size configuration. I know now after researching more that that's not true, and binoculars from the same line /series can vary quite a bit in quality from one size configuration to the other.

Glad now I never ordered that one although it had crossed my mind somewhere along the line.

I was intrigued by these two reverse porros so I took them out this morning for a side by side and low and behold :eat: yes I have to eat my arrow somewhat because the 8x22 was the more effective bin but I would never go so far as to call it very good as I have seen many indicate.

The smaller Carson definitely seems to have much clearer glass but it has more distortion than the Visionary which is what basically made that more effective but it's bigger magnification and larger size to hold etc also made it more usable than the 7x18 and since it's only 40g heavier I am thinking it could be ok when something light and compact is needed but I wouldn't buy another small porro unless it was as clear as the Carson and as non-distorted as the Visionary. That would actually be good.

Another thing I notice about them is that they come in a same size box with the same pouch and cloth and wrist strap so obviously originate from the same place but I think that's my cheap reverse porro exploration complete and not with any great result.

From sitting here the Carson is really very good but it goes bad when outdoors because the distortion and soft edges really start to show while the Visionary is something of the opposite or at least more consistent. Some bins I do find seem good when trying out from indoors but fail when outdoors such as the Bresser. With that outdoors it was glare and edge softens neither of which show up while using it from indoors.

Oh and I did have an acquaintance try the Visionary this morning while out and well, they thought it was "Brilliant"? I can only think it may seem like this to some-one not normally a user of a better bin which this person was or else I know nothing but for example my Kowa SV 8x32 has the same fov of 7.8 as the 8x Visionary but is visually way way out of the league of this reverse porro. Easily twice as sharp and clear but then more than twice the price and very much worth it.

I will give the Visionary another chance based on this more positive experience today. Maybe it isn't as bad as I thought but there is one other thing with it. The IPD is 70mm max and I'm on the max and could possibly do with an extra mm or so and I can only use it with the eyecups folded down even though I don't wear glasses.

The Nikon EII is another bin I found good from the house but not so outdoors and I am seemingly in the minority with that one but it's one I sure don't miss. With that it was low mag and CA the outdoor problems for me.

My Papilio II 6.5x is very good and I'm looking forward to the return of the bugs. A compact porro of this quality would be great but alas it would seem to be very illusive. Even the 8x25 Pentax reverse porro I got wasn't as good and quite large and heavy.
 
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Chicolom

Member
Clive, have you already tried the Olympus Roamer reverse porro? I wonder how they would compare with the 8x22 Carson...

I picked up the Carson 7x18 and I am pleasantly surprised by them! The optics are nice and sharp, better than you would expect for a binocular the size of a Christmas tree ornament. Yes, there is some funky distortion going on, but the field of view is also quite large which is a plus. I like them ;)

I have some Kenko 8x25 MC SG porros on the way from Japan. Not really smaller than the Pentax- comparable to the Olympus Tracker 8x25 in size and spec. I'll see how they perform when they show up in 3+ weeks.
 

CliveP

Well-known member
Clive, have you already tried the Olympus Roamer reverse porro? I wonder how they would compare with the 8x22 Carson...

I picked up the Carson 7x18 and I am pleasantly surprised by them! The optics are nice and sharp, better than you would expect for a binocular the size of a Christmas tree ornament. Yes, there is some funky distortion going on, but the field of view is also quite large which is a plus. I like them ;)

I have some Kenko 8x25 MC SG porros on the way from Japan. Not really smaller than the Pentax- comparable to the Olympus Tracker 8x25 in size and spec. I'll see how they perform when they show up in 3+ weeks.

I was going to order the Carson 8x22 and I switched to the Visionary as it seemed that could be better.

Now I think the Carson 8x22 would still have a lot of distortion like the 7x18 so I wouldn't risk that but I really was hoping that the Visionary would have good glass transmission etc similar to the Carson so I was quite surprised and disappointed that it really doesn't because if it would have had then that really would have been very nice.

I've had several Olympus reverse porros in the past, 20 years back and they still make them, PCI or something and they were ok for beginning. Not had a Roamer. I had thought the Carson had shown signs that things had really moved on but the Visionary is something of a setback but as I say in the real outdoors it is the more effective.

It doesn't matter, just something I was looking at. I've got plenty of good bins to use and I still like my monoculars and the Hawke Endurance 10x25 is very useful as a compact for wide open space.
 

[email protected]

Well-known member
Supporter
I'm sure this has happens quite a lot. You read the great spec and blurb from the maker and see the big rrp price, do a search around and everybody is saying oh wow these are great, millions of stars awarded (ok maybe not just so many) and so you buy a pair and they are absolute rubbish.

I used to think my Bresser Everest 8x28 was bad and it isn't good but it is passible compared to this latest crap I got.

I give you the Visionary 8x22U. Bak4 prisms, fully coated bla bla. I'm guessing they didn't tell you it has plastic lenses as that's what it seems like. I think that's how they ditched the weight.

I actually cancelled a Carson Scout 8x22 to buy it and now it turns out the optics in my Carson Mini Scout 7x18 are way better than this Visionary although the build of the Visionary is probably better. The smaller Carson is actually sharper and better resolving and brighter and with more colour/contrast and the Visionary is apparently "HD" but it can't even obtain a sharp focus. The magnification looks out also as it seems more of a 9x power.

Fooking Hell. This may be getting the hammer treatment shortly. Ok maybe that might be a bit drastic. It does have a decent large view to it but it really does lack colour/contrast/and sharpness and it isn't particulary bright either.

So the real add should read. An ok binocular if you don't really want something that's actually good.

I wonder how it is that the cheaper smaller Carson Mini Scout has so much better optics?
A startling revelation just occurred to me. Do the people that are expressing their opinions on binoculars or writing reviews have a lot of experience with binoculars at different price points? I see all these positive reviews on the Nikon Monarch M7 and I am thinking that thing is not that great but then I am thinking how many of these people have actually used an alpha roof for any length of time to have a reference standard to compare it with. Sure if I was coming from a Bushnell Permafocus I would think the M7 is fantastic but if I am side by siding it with a Swarovski SV my opinion is going to be different. If you notice on Amazon.com some of the cheapest and worst binoculars have some of the HIGHEST REVIEWS! It is because the people don't know any BETTER! They have never seen a Zeiss SF or Swarovski SV much less used one for any length of time. So when somebody says so and so binocular is wonderful ask them if they have ever used an alpha roof in the field. Here is a perfect example of what I am talking about. Would you consider a Bushnell Permafocus a high quality binocular? NO! But yet it gets a 4 1/2 star rating on Amazon and read some of the gushing reviews. My god you would think it is the best binocular on the earth. So when somebody recommends a binocular ask this question. How many different binoculars have you actually used to compare it with and what price ranges were they.

http://www.amazon.com/Bushnell-Perm...455671552&sr=8-3&keywords=bushnell+permafocus
 
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WJC

Well-known member
I would consider ANY ONE review as possible BS,
the more consistant reviews, the more accurate.

edj

Carve that in stone!

With 2 or 3 dozen birding binoculars coming into the country under hundreds of different names, how else are the importers going to keep their sales up without out BSing their competition.

From the book:

EDITING BINOCULAR ARTICLES

A while back, I read an article comparing ten marine binoculars of the same aperture and magnification. Removing price, cosmetics, market, and advertising from consideration, however, only four were left in the line-up. The black and yellow model was the same as the black and blue model, or the black and orange model, etc.

Even the most casual journalist could have noticed the situation and realized his piece wasn’t going to contain the knowledge for which his readers might have hoped. However, would one or more of the importers have ceased advertising in the magazine had the truth been made known? The dollar is a mighty motivator. :cat:
 

FrankD

Well-known member
Joking of course...but this post just begged for a response like that to get all kinds of folks' wound up.

;)
 

CliveP

Well-known member
I suspect this Visionary has a plastic lens in the ocular (haven't pulled it apart just yet) as it reminds me of the sort of blurriness that the Carson 7x18 monocular had -but not that bad- and when I opened that I could see the mold injection mark on the side of the lens so I think that was plastic although maybe some kind of cheap glass. The Carson must not have this as it is distinctly sharper although mostly around the centre.

How much would this actually save in cost I wonder when in effect it seems to ruin the whole bin which could otherwise be very good and probably then double the price but then the Carson is cheaper so this doesn't make any sense to me? The Visionary is definitely the worst Bak4 bin I've ever come across and then again the Carson has these BK7 prisms apparently so are they in fact a lot better or something?

I'd love to know what goes on in making these and how they decide on either distortion or plastic lenses seemingly to ruin all their bins.
 

OPTIC_NUT

Well-known member
The most disconcerting review of old binoculars I have seen
is for the Streamline/Peterson 7x35. I found the field quality
excellent, flat and crisp for a 420ft, and more precise than Customs.
Maintenance was very sensible and easy, for cleaning.
The mechanical details are super-solid. It only took half a sentence
to say they were mediocre, so the reviewer probably didn't spend more
than seconds on them and didn't examine the field edges...
It seemed like an ignorant review, from such-and-such Observatory.
 

Maljunulo

Well-known member
A pair of Steiner 15X80, for me.

Decent optically (they resolved Mizar easily) but very poor mechanically.

A single bump misaligned them, and when I sent them away, I was told that they weren't worth repairing.

They're still in my garage.
 

CliveP

Well-known member
Clive, have you already tried the Olympus Roamer reverse porro? I wonder how they would compare with the 8x22 Carson...

I picked up the Carson 7x18 and I am pleasantly surprised by them! The optics are nice and sharp, better than you would expect for a binocular the size of a Christmas tree ornament. Yes, there is some funky distortion going on, but the field of view is also quite large which is a plus. I like them ;)

I have some Kenko 8x25 MC SG porros on the way from Japan. Not really smaller than the Pentax- comparable to the Olympus Tracker 8x25 in size and spec. I'll see how they perform when they show up in 3+ weeks.

That Kenko does looks a different animal to the Visionary. Twice the weight but it does have eye relief I see. I'm guessing something similar to the Pentax 8x25 UP I had and for some reason that was not as bright as the Papilio and bulkier and heavier also but maybe the Kenko will be better.

I like the idea of these little porros like the 7x18 an 8x22 but the implementation seems to be problematic for some reason. I mean my 8x20 RSPB HD is very impressive optically in fact it does actually amaze with clarity and detail so surely it can be done in a small relatively light and less expensive 8x20/21/22 porro.

I had the Olympus 8x21 DPC 1 also years back which was even poorer optically than these two reverse porros I have now but my sister takes it on holiday although now I think she prefers the simpler 7x18 Carson monoc I gave her and I actually think that would suit her more as she has no idea about setting diopter or anything and it's much easier to look through and very compact.

Interesting to hear what you make of the Kenko. I see they do an ultra view 8x21 also.

I tried the Visionary just from the house this morning without having looked through any good bin beforehand and I can see how some-one just looking for a basic bin could think it very good. The view is big and not very distorted for such a small light bin. If it just had some real sharpness like the Carson it would be really good so maybe frustrating more than anything but I think I could maybe perhaps actually see me throwing it into a pocket for a light bring along so long as I didn't look through anything good beforehand. The Kenko is bound to be better optically but a bit of a lump.
 

OPTIC_NUT

Well-known member
I had good luck with the 8x21 Olympus, but a light
film formed and the contrast faded when I left them in the car at 95F outside
(parking lot...probably 125F inside).
I'm guessing it was some condensed outgassing from the grease.

I got another pair....It's excellent, but I don't leave it out.

The 7x18 Carsons were interesting.....very sharp at best but
hard to get both sides perfect. I cycled the focser full-length 30 times
and that cleared up most of the issue....there was a bit of drag.
 

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