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

Which binocular(s) did you use today? (1 Viewer)


Today, I used my Zeiss 7x42 ClassiC. This binocular is the last iteration of a long line of binoculars, starting with the Hensoldt 7x42 "nachtglas," or night glass. The latter was a roof prism binocular but over the decades, the FOV was improved, lens coatings were applied and phase coating introduced. Some years ago, Zeiss introduced a 7x45 "night owl," which was front heavy, so the 7x42 Dilly was reintroduced as the ClassiC. Mine was made close to the end of the run. Its long body indicates a long focal length objective, minimising chromatic aberrations and it has an FOV of 150m at 1000m. It does not have internal focussing, so close focus is not what many would desire and I would not want to drop it into a puddle. The length might make it seem ungainly but it allows alternative ways of holding it steady.
I took it out this morning in overcast weather with showers, when birdlife seemed to be at a minimum. However I did see
blue jays,
male and female northern cardinals
male and female mallards
male and female hooded mergansers
an American black duck
white throat sparrows
mourning doves
downy woodpeckers and
male and female house finches.

Because of its easy to steady 7x power and its 42mm objective, this ClassiC is good binocular for finding planets in the twilight. I even used it find Venus in daylight.

Stay safe,
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Around 35 years ago I visited an optical dealer and saw a binocular. It was Zeiss Dialyt 7x42. The price was 7000 SEK. That is around $690 today. An insane price back then. I just wanted to know how good is such a binocular?
I got it in my hands and carefully observed a flower on a table in the store. I was totally blown away. It was like I did not look through a binocular but was transported 7x closer and watched it with my own eyes.
It was my very first experience with high grade optics. And I had never had such an experience before, when I only had been using and tried cheap optics. The normal with binoculars earlier was a magnified image but it was just an image which was far below the quality of naked eye view. The difference between low class and high grade:
Low class: a significantly degraded magnification of the object.
High grade: gives the naked eye feeling like you were transported closer to the object.

Today I probably had not been blown away by Dialyt 7x42, because I have another reference. Now I am used with high quality, and what earlier was high grade is mid grade today.
35 years ago I had surely become highly impressed by my newest binocular: Vortex Bantam HD 6,5x32.
To say I used it today may be an exegerration. But I watched through it indoors just for fun. It's minus 22 deg Celsius outside and it's hardly daylight for a while so I think it will take some month until I will really use binoculars.

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Today I used a binocular for the first time in years: a Zen-Ray 7x36 ED2. Some years ago, there was a lot of excitement about Zen-Ray binoculars on Birdforum. I must write there was something approaching irrational exuberance as some forum members were far too enthusiastic about this brandZen-Ray 7x36.jpg. This 7x36, like all the Zen-Ray binoculars, was made in China. The focussing seemed very stiff, possibly from lack of use. As I discovered years ago, the field of view 9.2º or 9.4º, was a little too generous with soft edges and curvature of field. It did provide a nice bright and contrasty view. I had a good view of the waning moon which showed craters and mari. Of course, Zen-Ray is out of business and the lifetime guarantee expired with the company. I did see and identify the following birds:
Northern shovellers
A male wood duck
American black ducks
A great blue heron
White throat sparrows
A female northern cardinal
Downy woodpeckers
A juvenile red tail hawk

Stay safe,
They are heavy compared to your SFs, about two ounces, but overall a nice glass for challenging light conditions with gracious eye relief.
Picked these 8x30 Jena's up yesterday in pristine condition from a junk shop, the closest match to test them against was a pair of Pentax XCF 8x40 and the older Jena's had the edge being slightly more brighter... I love my bargain bin finds 😁


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Today, I reached deep into my cupboard for my Leica 7x42BA.

tLeica 7x42 BA.JPG
I bought this binocular about twenty years ago, as a demo from Gr8fuldoug at Cameraland. The most important optical difference between the 7x42BA and the 7x42BN is that the latter focuses more closely. With a seven power magnification and 42mm objectives it provides a bright stable image like the 7x42 Zeiss Dialyt ClassiC, but with its internal focussing, the Leica is surely more water resistant, as the Zeiss uses a moveable bridge. The Zeiss uses Abbe-König prisms, so it may be a shade brighter; has a touch of stereopsis and a long body with opportunities for varying ways of holding. I have favoured the Dialyt over this binocular.

Today, I saw the following birds:
Northern shovellers,
Hooded mergansers
A male wood duck
An American black duck
A ring billed gull
Northern cardinals
White throat sparrows
Mourning doves
Blue jays and
A Cooper hawk.

Stay safe,
Nice couple of miles ambling along the River Mersey in Stockport this afternoon.
Decided to use my compact binoculars, just for a change.
Really enjoyed them !


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