Monday, October 5, 2009

Bushnell Natureview 15-45x60 Spotting Scope

From: Kier in Canada

I would consider it "barely adequate"
Rating: 2 (of 5)

This Bushnell spotting scope is an enticing option for the budget conscious shopper, as it offers nice features considering its price. However, upon further use problems arise...

Sharpness is, overall, poor. Not the worst I've seen for scopes in this range, but still I would consider it "barely adequate". Birds in the view are simply not as clear as many slightly more expensive competing spotting scopes.

The overall view is pretty dark and below average for a 60mm spotting scope. It also suffers from relatively high levels of chromatic aberrations (blue/purple fringing), especially towards the edges of the frame, to a very high extent on high contrast subjects (e.g. a bird against the sky at midday).

The build quality is pretty poor, I'd say below expectations. The zoom ring is stiff, and the focus ring is of particularly ill-thought design, going round the barrel of the scope, which causes quite a bit of shake when using unless you have a really sturdy tripod. The focus ring is about as stiff as the zoom ring, and isn't as precise as I'd like, making it difficult to use in a rush.

I would rank this Bushnell spotting scope as slightly below average for the price range - while it certainly does get the job done (e.g. when you have no other choice, with alcids a mile away for example), I would consider looking at a different, perhaps only slightly higher priced, spotting scope.

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