Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Minox BV II 10x25 BR Binocular

From Thomas in Seattle, WA:

5/5 Rating

Great buy

I picked up the Minox BV II 10x25 BR Binocular, and LOVE them. The color and light collection are excellent.  

On my last trip to the ocean, with the 10 X 25 I was able to see the greenish yellow leg color of the Least Sandpipers; I was not able to see it with the 8 X 25 Pentax I had, so the 10 power really helped.

With any 10 x 25 the issue is small field of view. It makes following the jumps and small flights of quick warblers, kinglets and such a little difficult. To compensate, I practiced aiming at objects to get used to aiming the binoculars quickly, and it got much better with practice.  

The 4 stop eyecup adjustment for glasses is a bonus; I don't wear glasses, but my daughter and wife do, so when we shared them looking at seals from the ferry it was nice to be able to quickly adjust the eyecups.  

I'm so impressed I'm probably going to be looking at a pair of Minox 10X42's here pretty soon. The nice neoprene strechy neck strap is an uncommon bonus for a compact pair of binoculars too.  
I wish they came with a rain guard, but what compact binoculars come with a rain guard?

Monday, August 31, 2015

Zeiss Victory SF 10x42 Binocular

From Cindy L. in Republic of Panama:

5/5 Rating

Remarkably excellent

I expected a lot from the  because of the very high price and the fact that Zeiss built them "from scratch" as binoculars designed specifically for birders and wildlife observers.

I am not disappointed - they are better than I expected.  The focus knob really does have a buttery-smooth action and can be used with fingers in their natural position.  I have very small hands, and the weight is not a problem due to the perfect balance of the bins when held up to the eyes.  The resolution, the field of view - it's all spectacular.  

I can't think of a single negative comment or complaint.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Celestron Granite ED 8x42 Binocular

From Colleen in Oregon:

4/5 Rating

Great binos!

I was excited to find a good pair of field binos with an IPD that would fit! Very happy with the performance and viewing clarity of my  and thrilled they still work well (no fogging or damage) after being slammed by a wave out in the research boat.  

My only complaint is that the lens caps don't fit tightly and keep falling out - haven't lost one yet but worried that I will.  Otherwise they are great, lightweight, crisp binoculars for a reasonable price.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Zeiss Terra ED 8x42 Binocular

From Jim in Delaware:

5/5 Rating

Fantastic views!

I have been using the  for a month now and absolutely love them! Colors pop and details are clear.

I am also a big fan of the focus wheel, which is well positioned and large. The sensitivity of the focus wheel took a few days to get used to, but once I did, I have really enjoyed the quickness of finding the proper focus. 

The one improvement I would suggest to Zeiss would be to provide lens caps that hold onto the body more firmly. The supplied objective covers pop out with the slightest movements. 

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Meopta Meostar 10x42 Binocular

From Derek in NY:

5/5 Rating

Great Binoculars!

Great binoculars! I have owned the  for a little over two years now I couldn’t be more pleased with them. I use the 10x42s and can say with confidence that they deliver some of the brightest, most crisp viewing I’ve ever experienced in a 10x42 binocular. 

I am an avid birder and rely heavily on the binocular to deliver these types of results. I have put these to the test in a variety of field conditions and have had zero issues with fogging or water. I am constantly in the field with my job and I am very hard on equipment and can say that these were built with longevity and durability in mind. Plus Meopta’s lens design can’t be matched (I own the Meostar S2 Spotter as well). 

In short, I would highly recommend these to someone that wants a high-end pair of binoculars while achieving the best bang for your buck. There’s a reason these get ranked as one of the best HD binoculars in the world. 

Monday, August 24, 2015

Fujinon Polaris 10x50 FMT-SX Binocular

From Jim in Minnesota:

5/5 Rating

A gift to astronomers

The  are some of the finest binoculars for wide field astronomy made at any price.  The fact that you can buy them at such a reasonable price is kind of amazing. 

While some may never adjust to individual focus, they are a no compromise method for astro use on a tripod.  I have easily seen the North America Nebula (NGC 7000) in Cygnus under dark skies.  The moon is spectacular in its detail, and the list goes on. Color rendition is true and great, and stars are points of light clear to the edge of the field.  

Don't hesitate on these if you want great binoculars for astronomy that can also be hand held. 

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Vortex Viper 8x28 Binocular

From James in Minneapolis, MN:

5/5 Rating

Great optics

I was looking for a small, easy to take along pair of binoculars for hiking and general nature use.  I have larger and heavier 8 x 32 and 8 x 42 pairs by Nikon and Leica. I wanted something light, easy and good to pick up and go. I tried some others and the  were way better than others in their size and price range.  

They focus easily, the color rendition is superb, as is the clarity and definition. Color fringing is all but nonexistent and edge of field definition is very good.  They are a touch larger than some in this group, but the trade-off in optical quality is more than worth it.  It has made me take a hard look at other Vortex models.  Made in Japan and highly recommended. 

Monday, August 10, 2015

Meopta Meopro HD 8x32 Binocular

From Kemer T. in San Diego:

5/5 Rating

It pays to listen

I recently purchased the , thanks to advice from Eagle Optics and in spite of the absence of reviews to serve as the basis for some comparison. Indeed, Meopta seems to be a company that is better known in hunting circles than birding, with very few reviews available through the Internet. Meopta is a venerable optical manufacturer that started in what was Czechoslovakia and is now international, with an assembly factory in New York.

They have an understated elegance that is an improvement over Meopta’s rather baroque look for their Meostar series. The rubber finish provides an excellent grip. Subtle indentations on the bottom of the barrels fit the thumbs nicely and I find these to have excellent balance overall. The diopter adjustment is on the right barrel; although it doesn’t lock, it is plenty stiff and not likely to accidentally move. I especially like the focuser: large and very responsive. My only nit is a case that is so tight you can’t reasonably get the binoculars in and out.

I can’t provide a comparison with current competing high-end binoculars. To be realistic, the top offerings are all pretty spectacular, and some are spectacularly expensive. My older binoculars were Nikon’s top-end 8x42s from a dozen years ago. I have had no complaints with them, other then their weight. However, advances in optical glass and design have really come a long way and to my surprise and delight the Meopro 8x32 HD optically matches or exceeds the old Nikon 8x42s. In fact, they have a slightly wider field of view and seem to have more definition in low light. This is a testament to the glass and optical coatings: theoretically, the 8x42s gather 72% more light than 8x32s. 

There is no doubt in my mind that Meopro 8x32 HD qualifies as “high-end” in finish and performance, and achieve that at a reasonable price. I’m glad I listened to the recommendation from the Eagle Optics advisor.