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Thread: Binos

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    Member Trappnguns's Avatar
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    Default Binos

    Racking my brain here. I am in the market for a new set of binos. I have two decent full size 7x50 jobs, but I never use them because they are too big. They get in the way and get tangled in the brush...

    What do you use? I was going to get by with a pair of redfields, but they are $30 more locally ($177 v $145) and they are 27oz. Seems kinda heavy to me.

    What budget binos are good? What about objective? Can I get by with a 10x25 zeiss? Do Ineed to go higher? 30mm? 32? 40!?!?

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    Premium Member MarineHawk's Avatar
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    What kind of hunting? Or bird watching? Star gazing? Or Tom-Peeping?

    I personally, like a good 10x42mm for all-around hunting. I love ******** brand binos, but that's not the point.

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    Member Trappnguns's Avatar
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    Hunting... Mainly anything with four legs and brown or white. Basically an all around job.
    TrappHouseOutdoors@HuntFishAK

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    Member tyrex13's Avatar
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    10x42 and as much as you can spend. I think the Redfields are OK, but I think the Minox BF from Cameraland for $119 are the best value in that price range. The Vortex Fury are also very good and the Vortex Viper HD would be my choice in the ~$500 range, but once you get up around that price range there are a lot of good options. Check out the optics forum below this one.

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    I checked out a pair of Vortex Diamondback binos. For $200 or less, they're quite the performers. Anything less than those, I'm not sure you'll like them for long.

    Nikons are a close second to those.

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    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trappnguns View Post
    Racking my brain here. I am in the market for a new set of binos. I have two decent full size 7x50 jobs, but I never use them because they are too big. They get in the way and get tangled in the brush...

    What do you use? I was going to get by with a pair of redfields, but they are $30 more locally ($177 v $145) and they are 27oz. Seems kinda heavy to me.

    What budget binos are good? What about objective? Can I get by with a 10x25 zeiss? Do Ineed to go higher? 30mm? 32? 40!?!?
    1). Quite a few have done well working with Doug at CameraLand, who sponsors the optics forum. You might call and see what he'd recommend in your price range.
    2). This was a good recent thread on binos in the $200-$300 range: http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/showthread.php/79738-New-Bino-s-200-300
    3). Snyd has recommended some of the birdwatching optics forum. These sites seem both informative and helpful for either good basic info, or for field advice about good values, or excellent optical function. They were one of the first places (along with Doug at CameraLand) I heard about Zen Rays, and also Kowa (along with Bob Hodson at Barney's Sports Chalet) optics:
    http://www.birdwatching.com/optics.html
    http://www.optics4birding.com/binoculars.aspx
    4). If compact and light weight are priorities, it will obviously depend on your hunt requirements, but I have a friend with plenty of Alaska experience who is happy with his Leica Compact Ultravid, 8 X 20s (http://www.cameralandny.com/optics/site.pl?page=40256) when we're glassing in the 300 yd or less range in more open environments.

    5). Low-light performance and color resolution are the real priorities for me, so I test binos in dim light for color resolution too.

    Good luck!

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    Premium Member MarineHawk's Avatar
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    Yeah, I got my Geovids from CameraLand too. Mercifully, I go to NY several times a year on business and stay near their store there--so I can try their stuff out before purchasing. I know their spendy, but it's so great having the binos and range-finder all in one thing.


    (Total tanget, but I find a range-finder is great evfen if you don't bring it with you. By playing around with mine, I find that I'm getting better again at estimating distances without one).

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    Member cjustinm's Avatar
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    i had some 10 x 25 steiner predators that were less than $200 i believe, truth is i gave them to my dad small binos tend to strain the eyes and have a terrible fov. i prefer a mid range bino because im pretty hard on them, id like a pair of swarovskis but im sure id just break them or lose them so i go with leupold 8 x or 10 x cascades/wind river/ mojaves any are good and easy on the eyes.

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    Look at Alpen Optics. 10x40 is what I always start with, or whatever the manufacturer in question has that's comparable. Compacts are nice in the store but not so good in the field. At least that's what my eyes tell me. Even high dollar compacts.

  10. #10
    Member BucknRut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir View Post
    I checked out a pair of Vortex Diamondback binos. For $200 or less, they're quite the performers. Anything less than those, I'm not sure you'll like them for long.

    Nikons are a close second to those.
    Spot on for what you are looking for in an affordable price. I just used my Vortex side-by-side with my Pentax today and it was difficult to distinguish between the two. I would definitely choose these over Nikons any day. MHO

    Good Luck!

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    Member Trappnguns's Avatar
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    I'm going to go with the Vortex. The warranty has sold me. I am extremely rough on all my gear.

    Is the crossfire that much worse/ diamondback that much better?

    What am I paying the xtra money for?

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    After reading the specs and features pages of both on Vortex's site, it appears that the Diamondback may have better coatings and is a roof prism model. It should have better contrast, may be a tad sharper looking to boot. The Diamondback touts argon gas instead of the Crossfire's nitrogen. It has a wider field of view too. I guess you'd have to look at trees and such at lower light through both to see if you could tell the difference.

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    Member tiger15's Avatar
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    I recently purchased a pair of Vortex Viper HD 10 x 42 binoculars. I used them on my Kodiak hunt and I was thoroughly impressed. I tried them, some Swaro's, Leica's and Nikon's before purchasing these. Maybe it is just my vision, but none compared to the full clarity of the Vortex binoculars. During the hunting trip, my hunting partner left his Leica's in the tent and we shared mine for glassing. I never noticed the weight while hiking around, maybe due to heavy packs, but I also never had an issue with them fogging up either. Just my .02 cents...

    Terry

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    Leica 8x42
    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

    Better living through chemistry (I'm a chemist)

    You can piddle with the puppies, or run with the wolves...

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    Nitro, he said budget, but never really said how large eh?

    Well then, Canon 10x42IS do the best job for my budget!

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