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Zeiss 8x32 Conquest HD vs FL comparison? (1 Viewer)


Sempach, Switzerland
I'm trying to sell my 8x32 FL and met up with a potential buyer who brought along the Conquest HD 8x32 he has owned for two years (bought new). So we started comparing the two models, and we were agreeing that the two models were pretty close. But the price is by far lower in the Conquest. Definitely no reason for this fellow to get the FL I had on offer.

So I'm wondering now, why the Conquest escaped my "radar" when I was looking for a small model a few years ago (pre SFL time). Is it that the Conquest only gained this fine quality with the arrival of the HD version? Also, I noted that the ocular lens is considerably larger than the one on the FL, thus viewing is a bit more comfortable. But what struk me most, the coating was not that aggressive reddish-orange Zeiss had started with a bit before the FL line was replaced by the next models. Thus this Conquest HD had a very pleasing neutral coating, like the older FLs or the newer SFLs.
I have spent a lot of time comparing the 8x32 FL and 8x32 Conquest HD and without s doubt the FL is better, and it should be at the higher price point. The FL is slightly brighter, has better contrast, and it controls flare and CA better. With the Conquest HD, if you look off-axis you will see fringing, especially on the edge, and with the FL you do not. The FL is one of the best binoculars around for controlling CA because of the fluorite glass technology. The Conquest HD is a very good glass for the money, but the FL is still one of the best binoculars around and worth the difference in price, especially if you are sensitive to CA.
Besides showing less CA, FL is also smaller and lighter, and has excellent sharpness which I wonder whether Conquest can match. But the HD wasn't something new that you missed, it dates back to 2012. And anyway I'm sure that you'd really have preferred an FL with the more typical coatings, which (still) sounds like the real issue here, what you truly wanted but unfortunately didn't get. (Conquest may even have had red coatings then also, I don't know.)
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A lot of people do these comparisons when the weather is bright and sunny which IMHO is a waste of time as some alpha optics do not seem to show their superiority until the light is not so good .
It does not matter how the light is to find something that suits your face and is good to handle but having something good to look at in poor viewing conditions can make a huge difference which may be the main reason some dealers run these optic events at reserves.

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