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$300 vs $500 Binocular Decision

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/09/2015 at 18:59
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Optics GrassHopper
Optics GrassHopper


Joined: September/17/2013
Location: Hayward, Ca
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Just curious, but are you speaking from experience??

Have you ever used a pair of GOOD WW2 era binoculars??  Such as Zeiss, Leitz (Leica), Hensoldt??  And are you actually saying that a 6x30 or a 7x42 will out-perform a decent 7x50?? . . really??

In the 75 years since some of them were manufactured, affordable optics technology has not advanced all that much.

I have a small collection, and use them regularly.  And, YES, I have compared them to several of the "new and updated" modern binoculars. 

As an example, I have a pair of Leitz 7x50 "U-boat" binoculars that I HAVE done a "side-by-side" comparison - against "modern-up-to-date" Steiner 7x50, Nikon 7x50, Bushnell 7x50 " and Celestron 7x50.  And my "old, uncoated and outdated" Leitz performed very well (better than I expected)  The clarity at distance as well as "low light" was equal to the Steiner Marine and Bushnell, better than the Nikon and Celestron.  When "star gazing" only the Celestron showed comparative clarity and color.

Check the prices of the "vintage" glasses on ebay, and compare them to a few of the ones suggested in the above post.  Then compare that to some of the glasses suggested in the above posts.

Not trying to start a war, I was merely attempting to make a helpful suggestion to anyone purchasing binoculars.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/09/2015 at 19:11
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Optics Jedi Master
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/09/2015 at 20:55
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Optics GrassHopper
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Joined: April/19/2015
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I went dramatically up in price.  I ordered a pair of Razor HD 8x42 for a good price.  I like the warranty and ergonomics, and the optics seemed better than less expensive options.  They are lighter and have a better FOV versus the Vipers.  They arrive mid-week.  Comparably priced Leica's were much heavier and I couldn't justify the next jump in price.

I realize that I want the Swaro ELs but don't have the money now.  I hope that these will hold their value reasonably well and I can sell them for the upgrade in a year. 

Thank you for your suggestions.  I will comment about my decision once they arrive next week and I get a chance to use them. 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/10/2015 at 00:12
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Optics Jedi Knight
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You will love the Vortex Razor HD 8X42. They compare favorably to the alpha brands without the price tag.
Yes from experience. In bright daylight they may be clear, but when things start getting dim there is a big difference. If looking near the sun at sunset the newer glasses will not have the flare that the older glasses experience. Color and contrast suffer without corrective coatings that were not in use back then. Most of the older glasses suffered terribly with a narrow field of view. It was not until the 70s that you even heard of fully coated lens systems.
     I can easily see a huge improvement in quality in only the last 10 years. Now you say that 75 year old optics are as good as what is being made today... It speaks for itself.
       It very well could be that the less than stellar glasses might be the one of the reasons that most of the u-boats were spotted first and got sunk.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/10/2015 at 11:22
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Optics GrassHopper
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Very nice Steerdog. Can I ask how much you got them for? And were you able to compare the viper and razor 8x42's? I just purchased 12x50 razors and so far couldnt be happier. I compared them to the other high end german glass options but never was able to compare them to the 12x50 vipers to see if I could justify the price. Im sure they arnt twice as better but Im very happy with the awesome clarity and will have them for life.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/10/2015 at 12:46
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Optics Professional
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steerdog, you made the best choice possible. That was smart. 
Your Razor 8x42 will do 99% of what a Swarovski does. Hold on to that glass, you may have to pay $1500 to upgrade by just a little. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/11/2015 at 21:31
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Optics GrassHopper
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Joined: September/17/2013
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Steerdog, it sounds like you made a reasonable and good choice.  I hope they work well for you.  I was merely trying to show you more options.


Devil 

and in reply to several other "experts" out there . . . . I wonder if anyone has actually tried a few of the top WW2 era optics (that have been serviced and restored) in a reasonable comparison test . . .

 . . or if the opportunity just came up to stand back and throw trash . . . .

Bricked


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