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Thread: Nikon Binoculars - Monarch 5 vs 7 series

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    Member Forager's Avatar
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    Default Nikon Binoculars - Monarch 5 vs 7 series

    Hi folks. Looking for a new set of binoculars for general hunting purposes: moose and black bear, primarily. Budget in the $400 - $500 range, so have been looking at the Nikon Monarch series, 10x42. Wondering if anyone has direct experience of the Monarch 5 vs Monarch 7, and thoughts on whether there's that much of a difference between them? Open to other recommendations in that price range as well. Thanks!

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    In the $400-500 price range, there are a ton of good binocular options to pick from...too many to limit yourself to Nikon IMHO. There is nothing wrong with them, but there are so many good ones in the really competitive mid-range class binos that it takes some sorting out.

    Head to your local Sportsmans or Cabelas and look through a bunch of them and you'll find something that you like. Ask to take them outside, looking through glass under fluorescent lighting isn't particularly useful. If you go at an off peak time, the staff is more willing to take the time to head outside with them for you.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    Member duckslayer56's Avatar
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    In that price range I'd look into a pair of vortex, they're excellent binos, and the warranty is top notch if you do run into an issue.
    Some people call it sky busting... I call it optimism
    "Swans are a gift" -DucksandDogs
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    I have a Nikon spotting scope and it does "ok" for what I've needed. But, unless they've really updated their glass in the last few years, for the money you're talking about I would shy away from the binos. A spotter is one thing....you don't have it consistently to your eye. But you can literally put days in behind your binos. Believe me when I say, eye fatigue is a very real thing.

    Like has been mentioned, I would look around at other optics for quite awhile before plunking down the moola. When you do find something you like, give Doug at "Camera Land" (a sponsor here) and try to see what kind of deal he can give you.

    One thing you also may want to try is.... "Camera Land" is a Swarovski dealer. You might want to ask Doug if he can give/get you a deal on some, what they call "traditional" binos. These are the "old" style binos that they don't advertise now, but I believe Swarovski still has in stock. You really couldn't tell these binos from a cheap pair of Tascos if you saw them sitting on the front seat of a truck. What this ends up meaning is fantastic glass for a VERY cheap price. I was lucky. I had access to a guide that had a Swarovski dealership and got them at cost. But my 7x42s (I went for extreme light gathering) ended up being drop shipped to my door for less than $500. A fellow guide friend of mine ended up with the rubber coated 8x42s for a few dollars more at the same time. Understand, these are actual Swarovski glass that countless guides still use. Weather he'll do it, or can get them, I don't know, but it may be worth asking Doug about it. If you need more info on model, or part number let me know.....
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Thanks folks. Wound up getting a great deal on Pentax ZD 10x43 ED binos, very happy with them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Forager View Post
    Hi folks. Looking for a new set of binoculars for general hunting purposes: moose and black bear, primarily. Budget in the $400 - $500 range, so have been looking at the Nikon Monarch series, 10x42. Wondering if anyone has direct experience of the Monarch 5 vs Monarch 7, and thoughts on whether there's that much of a difference between them? Open to other recommendations in that price range as well. Thanks!
    I spent three hours in cabelas the other day trying out binoculars. I was set on a pair old vortex until I went to the bargain cave. They had a pair of
    mon arch 5s that were listed d at $147 and 7s at $386. The 7s were by far best pair. Clarity wasn't even close. I do think the vortex diamond backs were very similar to the 5s. I found out that sometimes bargain cave prices can be brought down even more. The 5s got knocked down to $110 and the 7s to $280ish. I ended up buying the 7s.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yukon Cornelius View Post
    The 5s got knocked down to $110 and the 7s to $280ish. I ended up buying the 7s.
    Nice score! I almost went with Nikon 7s, really liked them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Forager View Post
    Nice score! I almost went with Nikon 7s, really liked them.
    I had my eyes on a set of vortex 12X50s that were $159. They looked great and compared to the Monarch 5s, I felt they were every bit as good, maybe even better with that warranty. However, I knew I really didn't want 12 powered with how I hunt. THe 7s were out of my budget just a little bit, but I just sacrificed ammo to cover the difference.

    I was blown away by the clarity. They are 8 powered, but realistically that will be sufficient for my purposes.

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