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Zeiss lover gets wooed by the Leica "enhanced reality" look (1 Viewer)

dries1

Member
I second the 10X50 HD+ over the 10X42 for wide open expanses. The FOV on the 10X50 is bigger than the 10X42 at 6.7 degrees. Additionally at night there must be fairly dark skies there too, the 10X50 will enhance that experience too for sure.

Good luck with your choice.

Andy W.
 

ZDHart

Well-known member
Supporter
ZD, I agree with Jafritten's post 18. Owning both the 7x42 and 10x50 UV HD+, IMO the 10x50 would be an even (much) better companion to your 7x42 than a 10x42, especially given the immediate viewing opportunities depicted in your photos. With the right harness I can comfortably carry the 10x50 on challenging hikes and it's great on a Tripod of course. The 7x42 and 10x50 are a fantastic pair of "bookends" in terms of full size bins.

Mike
Thanks for your comments, Mike and Andy. My only reservation with the 50s is the weight and most of my viewing is in bright sunlight, where I'm not sure my old eye's pupils would benefit from the 50mm objectives. In Arizona sunlight, even my 25s look about as bright to my eyes as 32s and 42s. Of course, after sunset those 50's would pop really wonderfully!

If my old pupils won't open more than perhaps 4mm in dim light, would the extra light through the large exit pupil of the 50s be noticeable to me?

I have been thinking about the 10x42 SFs, with their 360' FOV, vs. the UVHD+ 10x42s. One thing that I really notice with my 8x32 SF's is that dramatic, very immersive wide field of view. It does present a very significant visual difference to the narrower field of view of the Leicas.

And, the weight balance toward the eyes with the Zeiss SF is another very significant attribute - the 8x32 SFs are light to begin with, but with that weight shift toward the eyes, they almost feel lighter than air.

Between the immersive FOV and the weight balance, Zeiss has done some very significant things with the SFs. It's no wonder the SF's have received such acclaim.
 
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Mike F

Well-known member
What a lovely place to sit and view from! Another vote here for a 10x50 to go with your 7x42. Or you could do what I have done, which is to have the 7 x 42 UlVHD+, 10x42 NV and 12x50 UVHD+! 😀

I view at long distances quite regularly and I just love the immersive Leica view with great colours combined with the detail retrieval that you get from the 12X. It’s quite a special binocular.
 

ibramr

Well-known member
Greetings. It is difficult to add to the superior firsthand experience shared here. I just want to add two points. The first is confirming the clear superiority of the form factor and functionality of the UV 8x32 HD Plus while on the move, even in comparison to the Zeiss 8x32 FL and the Trinovid 8x32 BN; this is particularly the case when you are carrying other equipment, e.g., cameras, lenses, water, etc. The second is with the UV 7x42 HD Plus already in hand, and you are considering a 10x42 addition, you awe to yourself a detailed look at the Noctivid. I am confident that you will like it very much. Yes, you will end up with three not-cheap pair of binoculars, but then, we only live once. Enjoy in good health.
 
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jcnguyen09

Well-known member
ZDHart,

Also since size and weight is your concern and you don't worry much about using it at night, a NL 10x32 can be a good candidate! with 396' FOV and 69 AFOV, 92% light transmission.... it's fantastic!
 

SeldomPerched

Well-known member
Tom... those photos of mine are not made with binoculars. I shoot with Lumix and Olympus Micro4/3 cameras these days. And I have a few Leica branded Panasonic lenses for the system. (Panasonic and Leica are in partnership, working together producing cameras and lenses.)

The panorama image off my back patio (above) was made with Lumix GX8 camera and Leica/Pana 12-60 lens, at 25mm normal perspective (50mm equivalent in 35mm format) of several stitched images, combined.

The tele image of the hawks (which does look very much "binocular") was made with the Panasonic 100-300 lens, at 300mm (600mm equivalent in 35mm format).

I have never tried making photographs through binoculars. Perhaps I should "look into" doing that! :cool:
Hi, nor have I — as you could probably tell from my post!

Tom
 

Patudo

Well-known member
View of hawks on the snag, which can be seen toward the right end of the above image.

Thanks for the great photos ZD! Those Harris hawks (aka bay-winged hawks) are regularly used as a falconer's bird here in the UK, but I've very seldom seen photos of them in their natural habitat, so far from where their captive descendants have ended up. They're noted for cooperative hunting, which is fairly rare in raptors, and probably makes them temperamentally more suitable for working in cooperation with humans. It would be fascinating to see a team of them doing their thing - like winged/feathered velociraptors!

As a retired commercial photographer, I've spent a lifelong career obsessed with color quality and visual enhancement to photographic renditions of reality. It is the difference between my Zeiss & Swaro bins image renditions vs. the Ultravid image rendition that I'm referring to, really. And, I'd say that to my visual taste, it is an enhancement - as I slightly prefer it.

I've noted quite a few folks with a photography background do seem to prefer the Leica look, interestingly enough. I wonder is it something in the way you guys are trained, or have trained yourselves, to prefer greater saturation, or is that just the way folks that enjoy photography are wired?

I also sometimes wonder whether, as distance often leaches out the colour of the image, some extra saturation may help bring back the colour (as it were) when viewing targets further away - maybe!
 

amgc36

Member
I grew up with film cameras and started off with Nikon. Eventually was able to shoot with Leica R and M systems. I think the appeal of Leica lenses was not only the color balance but also the incredible bokeh. I’ve never seen anyone in any binocular discussion use the term bokeh for out of focus areas. I just acquired the 7x35 Trinovid classic and it’s easy to use and a pleasure. That about sums it up. I also have this feeling that I “like” my Ultravid HDPlus 10x50. Whereas I am impressed by my Swarovski ELs and Zeiss Victory HT and FL binoculars.
 

ZDHart

Well-known member
Supporter
Thanks for the great photos ZD! Those Harris hawks (aka bay-winged hawks) are regularly used as a falconer's bird here in the UK, but I've very seldom seen photos of them in their natural habitat, so far from where their captive descendants have ended up. They're noted for cooperative hunting, which is fairly rare in raptors, and probably makes them temperamentally more suitable for working in cooperation with humans. It would be fascinating to see a team of them doing their thing - like winged/feathered velociraptors!



I've noted quite a few folks with a photography background do seem to prefer the Leica look, interestingly enough. I wonder is it something in the way you guys are trained, or have trained yourselves, to prefer greater saturation, or is that just the way folks that enjoy photography are wired?

I also sometimes wonder whether, as distance often leaches out the colour of the image, some extra saturation may help bring back the colour (as it were) when viewing targets further away - maybe!

Very interesting to learn about the Harris Hawks working with humans in the UK. Yes, they seem to work together here. I often see them sitting together on high snags, scanning the ground for a meal.

As a commercial photographer, my objective (usually!) was to present the most "attractive" rendition of my subject, whether human or inanimate. And, of course, doing so involved lens selection, vantage points, film types, papers, digitally adjusting levels, contrast, color balance, saturation, dodging, burning in... to the point that reality was absolutely not being rendered exactly "true to life".

So, I guess that may be why I am so drawn to the Leica "look" through bins. For the most part, I prefer warm renditions of scenes over cold. Leica (as all glass makers) adjust contrast, saturation, color quality, color temperature, and color balance. That's fine by me. When I look through binoculars, I want to thrill in the glorious "look" of what I'm seeing, even if that look may be ever so slightly varying from complete neutrality. From what I've observed so far, Leica does that in a way that I find most appealing.

Funny thing... once digital editing/Photoshop became widespread in use, many people proclaimed that photographs could "no longer be trusted". That's FUNNY because from the very first days of photography, a photograph could not be trusted to render reality with complete neutrality. Photographers engaged in multiple exposures, dodging, burning, use of different films and papers all of which render images differently. Just the use of different lenses and vantage points completely alters perspective, relative sizes, etc. So NO, photography could NEVER be trusted to render real life completely absent of any kind of bias introduced by humans. And, I'd say that we can't expect binoculars to render scenes with complete neutrality either.

So... pick the brand that gives you a look that you love seeing, and don't look back!
 
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CSG

Well-known member
United States
There is something about Leica glass. I don't use this camera much any more but I have a 1967 Leica M4 with a 1957 Leica Summicron 5CM Dual Range lens and it truly is something special vs. my other rangefinders and lenses (many of which I can use on the Leica with an adapter). I haven't had as much experience with their binoculars but suspect their optics are equally special regardless of whatever other shortcomings might be found with focusers, diopter settings, ergonomics, etc.
 

ZDHart

Well-known member
Supporter
There is something about Leica glass.

So true. I have two samples right now, the UV HD+ in both 8x32 and 7x42.

The "look" through these is spectacular - the color quality, crystalline clarity, razor sharpness. And, the feel of tank-like build quality impresses greatly.

I have one more pair arriving this coming week, UV HD+ 10x42. My sense is that these three bins are all keepers. Of course I still love my Zeiss bins. They are awesome, too, and aren't going away. But there is something about Leica glass!

I had, very reluctantly, thought to return the UV HD+ 8x32's (as I have two Zeiss 8x32s, Victory SF and Conquest HD, already), so I packed them up for return. But today decided to look through them one more time! That Leica experience told me that I just can't let them go - they will stay with me.

The UV HD+ 8x32's are really amazing bins - so compact, lightweight, with such an exquisite view, and tank-like build. They could be my one and only bins, if it came to that. Now, I can part with my Swaro CL Pocket in 8x25. I think. o_O
 
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Mike F

Well-known member
@ZDHart, do check out the 10x42 NV before you settle on the UV. I’ve been using mine all day today and all I can say (as an owner of the 7x and 12x UVHD+) is that they combine the best features of the traditional Leica view with some of the advantages of the flat field alphas with none of the downsides. The best binocular that Leica have produced to date for sure!
 
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tenex

reality-based
That about sums it up. I also have this feeling that I “like” my Ultravid HDPlus 10x50. Whereas I am impressed by my Swarovski ELs and Zeiss Victory HT and FL binoculars.
That's an interesting distinction. Does it mean there's something you don't like about the Swaro/Zeiss, and if so what? I now use both Leica and Swaro, and while they have somewhat different character I'd say I like or enjoy both quite equally. (Then again the Swaro I chose was SLC, and I wonder whether I might have ended up saying something similar about ELs myself.)

The UV HD+ 8x32's are really amazing bins - so compact, lightweight, with such an exquisite view, and tank-like build. They could be my one and only bins, if it came to that.
They were mine for nearly 20 years, first BN and then HD+ 10x32s. Lately I've discovered that bigger glass (SLC 56!) makes a nice complement. By the way I think Mike is right, you should try the Noctivid before settling on 10x42 UV.

What is the huge lizard at left in your first photo, and the small one with the turquoise throat in the last?
 

jafritten

Well-known member
... I can say (as an owner of the 7x and 12x UVHD+) is that they combine the best features of the traditional Leica view with some of the advantages of the flat field alphas with none of the downsides...
Mike, what can you say about the rolling ball effect in the NV? Is that one of the downsides that you don't see in the NV? That would be interesting for me to know.
 

Mike F

Well-known member
Mike, what can you say about the rolling ball effect in the NV? Is that one of the downsides that you don't see in the NV? That would be interesting for me to know.
That is indeed what I was mostly referring to. I’m very sensitive to rolling ball, being one of those people who somewhat controversially claim that it’s actually nausea inducing, and I don’t perceive any at all in the NV. On the up side the field IS flatter with much less pincushion than the Ultravids. It also has a noticeably larger sweet spot, although still fairly soft at the edges. I think if you like the UV view, you’ll love the NV view. The only downside for some people seems to be the ergonomics. I don’t have any issue with the ergonomics at all, and indeed I actually found myself using them one handed (made easier by the open bridge design) today when an interesting boat passed by whilst I was eating lunch!
 

jafritten

Well-known member
That is indeed what I was mostly referring to. I’m very sensitive to rolling ball, being one of those people who somewhat controversially claim that it’s actually nausea inducing, and I don’t perceive any at all in the NV.
This is bad news for me, Mike. That puts me into a position where I can't seem to find a reason to justify not to buy one. Moreover, I find myself in a position where I don't really know how to fund one. Maybe that'll solve my first problem after some consideration... For now, I shall drink oblivion from a double Highland Park, have a good night's rest and come back to the conversation tomorrow. Cheers, Mike.
 

SeldomPerched

Well-known member
I grew up with film cameras and started off with Nikon. Eventually was able to shoot with Leica R and M systems. I think the appeal of Leica lenses was not only the color balance but also the incredible bokeh. I’ve never seen anyone in any binocular discussion use the term bokeh for out of focus areas. I just acquired the 7x35 Trinovid classic and it’s easy to use and a pleasure. That about sums it up. I also have this feeling that I “like” my Ultravid HDPlus 10x50. Whereas I am impressed by my Swarovski ELs and Zeiss Victory HT and FL binoculars.
Hello amgc36,

My own experience with cameras matches yours exactly: film, Nikon then Leica (M but not R though). 35/2 Summicron and 35/1.4 Summilux in particular for the bokeh. And comparing Nikon and Leica slides: both excellent but certainly more modelling / 3D in Leica - the term used was 'plastic' and in an older sense, nothing to do with plastic as a substance! (However I found Nikon SLRs more reliable in the long run but that's too far off topic.)

I feel the same with Leica binoculars Ultravid HD Plus 7x42 (wide view) and 8x50 (noticeably narrow view) but I also get a Leica effect — if slightly yellower than redder — with the last of the Swarovski 8 and 10x42 SLCs.

Your statement about 'liking' your Ultravid 50 and 'being impressed' by your EL, HT and FL has neatly summed up, maybe even laid to rest the vacillation I have experienced in weighing up what I most want to keep if I reduce my small collection. I read your comment to mean that though those Zeisses and Swarovskis may be technically superior in various ways the overall experience from the Ultravid 50 leaves you with a nicer taste!

Tom
 

Renze de Vries

Well-known member
I’ve never seen anyone in any binocular discussion use the term bokeh for out of focus areas.
Good point. Birders are concerned with the center (where the object is located) and the edge (where the yardstick for optical quality is supposed to be found). More information about bokeh could be very useful.
Renze
 

Renze de Vries

Well-known member
This is bad news for me, Mike. That puts me into a position where I can't seem to find a reason to justify not to buy one. Moreover, I find myself in a position where I don't really know how to fund one. Maybe that'll solve my first problem after some consideration... For now, I shall drink oblivion from a double Highland Park, have a good night's rest and come back to the conversation tomorrow. Cheers, Mike.
I don't understand: Mike is reporting he doesn't experience 'rolling ball' and nausea in the Noctivid and you call this bad news?
Renze
 

jafritten

Well-known member
I don't understand: Mike is reporting he doesn't experience 'rolling ball' and nausea in the Noctivid and you call this bad news?
Renze
Sorry for the misunderstanding, Renze. What Mike says is good news. My problem now is that I want one dearly and I can't really afford one....that's why I said it was bad news.
 

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