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Recommendations, Info/Advice for Binoculars/Spotting Scopes

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Bush Baptist
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Bush Baptist » Sun Aug 12, 2012 11:39 am

I don't find them to be so Val. They are slightly larger than the 'standard' size pairs.
Whatever (according to BB): "You are correct but I don't want to admit it".

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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Penny » Sun Aug 12, 2012 12:52 pm

I have just bought myself a pair of Vortex Fury 8 x 42 - they are an American binocular that is giving many of the big names a run for their money.
In SA they are marketed only by Whysalls but are freely available in the USA.
Its the best pair of binoculars I have ever owned IMHO!
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Brummie » Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:11 am

Crested Val wrote:Are they very heavy Brummie/BB?

I have arthritic wrists, so need a fairly light pair.


They aren't heavy, but they sure aint no featherweight either (about 800 grammes in funny money). We carry them on walks, even use 'em at stadium gigs (that's SO and myself - can't answer for BB :wink: )

If we can both make it to the UK meet you could try them on for size! :D
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby DuQues » Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:30 am

Buying a harness for the bins (or camera, that works too) saves a lot of hardship too.
They will be out of your hands most of the time, only when you need them.
Arriving currently: The photos from our trip! Overhere! :yaya:

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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby dog » Tue Aug 14, 2012 5:36 pm

I recently decided to buy new binocs for SO and me so went to the internet to investigate due to having very litttle knowlege personally.
For what it is worth, my research pushed me towards the Nikon Monarch range as 'amongst the very best value for money on the market'.
Accordingly, I have bought 2 x Nikon Monarchs, 10 x 42's - cost approx R2800 each.
Heading for KNP on 02/09, so will only be able to provide feed-back when I get back 10 days later.
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Crested Val » Tue Aug 14, 2012 5:42 pm

Totally confused.!!! :slap:

Please could someone explain in very silple terms what does 8x42 mean?

Thanks. :thumbs_up:
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby DuQues » Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:03 pm

336! :lol:

Shameless copy and paste:
hose numbers on all binoculars refer to the magnification factor and the diameter of the lenses.
So an 8x 42 has 8 times magnification with a 40mm lens.
The greater the magnification the poorer the image quality and the harder it is to hold the binocular steady enough to actually enjoy the view.
Most people find 8-10 times magnification to be the most useful and comfortable for outdoor use.
Concert viewing requires maybe a 4 times binocular.

The diameter of the lens is important too as the bigger it is the more light is captured so the better the image tends to be, it also gives you a wider area to see (or field of view).
This field of view is usually expressed as an angle or as the number of feet the view from side to side appears at 1000 yards.
The smaller the FOV the harder it is to spot your target.


From here.
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Crested Val » Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:15 pm

Thanks Duco.

Does that mean that an 8x42 would be good for seeing a bird in a tree? :hmz:
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Crested Val » Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:41 pm

Thanks Duco.....
and what does Roof Prism mean?
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby nsmnsi » Mon Aug 20, 2012 4:19 am

Crested Val and Bustergirl:

There's a lot of valuable advice in the foregoing posts.

Critical points for budget binoculars:

(1) Higher magnification (the first number in the A X B binocular specs) is great BUT it means every slight shake of your hand will be magnified by that number!!
Hence a 20 X 50 binocular will magnify your slight hand shakiness 20 times!!!
This will render most images unviewable unless you have a tripod -and you can't really carry a tripod around, especially when driving!!
Also note that higher magnification usually means reduced image quality... and that brings us to:

(2) Resolution - image sharpness.
The SECOND number in the A X B specs.
It is essential that you get the maximum quality resolution for a satisfactory viewing experience!
The higher the magnification, the higher the resolution needs to be!!
So for example a pair of budget 20 X 30 would be very unsatisfactory... the 20X magnification would cause a great deal of unsteadiness (see (1) above) and the 30mm resolution would probably cause very slight colored halos around the edges of the image and the edges of the view perimeters!
A pair of 20 X 50 would fix this (50mm objective lens vs 30mm in the previous example) BUT you would still have the very serious shakiness problem!
I used to have a pair of 20 X 50 budget binoculars... very nice magnification and no halos but the 20X magnification of my shaky hand rendered them almost useless!!

In my opinion, your best bet would be a pair of 7 X 35 wide-angle binoculars from a reputable manufacturer (Bushnell?)
Admittedly the magnification isn't great but the image quality and, especially, the wide field of view more than make up for this!!
Shakiness factor is minimal and resolution excellent.. and as a bonus you get a wide angle view - not to be sneezed at if you're a non-professional tourist!

I have a pair of Canon 12 X 36 IS... IS = image stabilized.
Therefore the shake factor is eliminated even at a high 12X magnification.
And the resolution is just fine despite only a 36mm objective lens.
The drawback? PRICE!! they cost me US$560.
If you want to spend that kind of money these binocs are excellent.

But you specified "budget" so go with a pair of 7 X 35. You won't be sorry!!!

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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Crested Val » Mon Aug 20, 2012 2:24 pm

Well nsmnsi............talk about impulse buying. :shock:

I was soooooooooo confused as to which make and style to buy, and then I read your post. :dance:

For better or worse, I have ordered a pair of Bushnell Falcon 7x35 with case, from Amazon £58.

I'm just glad I finally made a decision, as I have been looking around, and getting more confused for over a year now.

We have a very good (Russian) pair that we inherited from my father in law, but they are much too heavy for my comfort, so SO can now use those I will see how I get on with the new ones.

I am a keen birder, but not fanatical about sightings, so here's hoping!!

Thanks nsmnsi, for helping me make this decision, even though it was on an impulse!!! :dance:
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby nsmnsi » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:47 pm

Crested Val: :clap:
You won't be sorry!
I went on two little wildlife forays some years ago.
During the first one I didn't have any binoculars with me but one of my friends had a pair of 10 X 50 and my other friend had 7 X 35.
I found I kept gravitating toward the 7 X 35 due to the clarity of the image and the absence of annoying shake.
On my second wildlife spotting trip I had borrowed a quite expensive pair of 8 X 30 (this configuration is the most popular for general use) and my friend still had his pair of 7 X 35.
Despite the good quality of my borrowed binoculars I quite shamelessly borrowed his 7 X 35 continually because of the better image quality and field of view.

Enjoy your new binocs!

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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Crested Val » Thu Aug 23, 2012 11:27 am

New binocs arrived, and looking good so far!!! :thumbs_up:
Will take a trip into the countryside (weather permitting) to try them out properly.
Very light, so that's a bonus to start with!! :dance:
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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby bustergirl » Sun Sep 02, 2012 6:10 pm

Hello -
wanted to give you an update on my binocular search.
I found out last week that I could borrow a pair from my brother.
They are Swarovski 7 x 30, and I just got them last night.
In my short test with them, they seem to work well.

thanks to everyone for their input.

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Re: Recommendations for binoculars

Unread postby Toddy » Mon Sep 03, 2012 3:06 pm

Hi Val, have you managed to try out your new binocs yet ?

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