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DayofReckoning

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Steiner is a very solid binocular, I always drooled over the 20X80's :)

Only thing I was never sure about was the auto focus system, or whatever it's called. Does it work well? Do you find yourself ever having to adjust the focus?
 

sledhead

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Ha! I missed a pair of used 20x80's at B&H..still kicking mysellf.

The "Sport Auto Focus" works well. It's something you have to try to appreciate. Being able to aim them anywhere and not have to focus is addicting. From deer at 50yds to the Comet at night. Really have not had to focus on anything closer than the 60 ft. It has spoiled me. The field of view is wide so locating something is very quick. I'm getting older and my eyes are changing...so, every now and then I redo the focusing procedure. Seems like I need to do it less and less though.
I will get a second pair of binocs with normal focusing for close up birding, however, the Steiners are keepers!
 

jrgold

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My personal perspective. I watched a ton of youtube vids and read many reviews looking for a pair of bins. All i can say is specs didnt match reality for me. I have a pair of vortex vanquish 10x26, and I like them very much. The field of view is exceptional, and because they are so small 10x magnification works with my grip to minimize shake. Since i was so satisfied with them i was eager to try another vortex model. I purchased the diamondback hd 8x32. Per specs these have a 426’ field of view. When i tried them out i struggled to get a good perspective. Adjusting the eye cups didn’t help, they were a huge let down compared to my Vanquish model. I returned them the next day to try their 8x42 without much improvement. I was going to give up, and just stick with my smaller 10x26, but a review prompted me to bump up in price to the nikon monarch 7. I tried them out and was just blown away. This is what i was going for, and they far exceeded my expectations. I can’t help smiling every time i bring them to my eyes. My use is for watching various critters on daily hikes, and they are perfect. Maybe they just work really well for my face structure, but they are in a different league than the vortex models for me. After saving awhile i will definitely give their 8x32 a try as well. I just wanted to share my experience in case anyone else is just relying on reviews. If you have the opportunity try some different models out and see what works for you.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

orbital

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Ha! I missed a pair of used 20x80's at B&H..still kicking mysellf.

+

What about a first gen Vortex Razor HD 16-48x65 spotting scope. {RZR-65A1}

Has decent eye relief, great glass & mechanically excellent.
Very high quality and one you pass down to family or great friend

..you can find for $799 @ eurooptic
 

sledhead

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Had the Zeiss Dialyt spotter for a bit. Great instrument but, just could not get used to closing one eye. Sticking with binoculars.
 

Kestrel

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Next time I dig out my daypack, I'll post a quick pic of my little Zeiss 4x monocular.
Definitely entry level @ $100 ~15-20 years ago; ~11mm objective lens & polymer body.
Bought it for field work during my construction inspection days; because of its size & low weight I could simply clip it to a vest pocket.
 
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bykfixer

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When my pop retired from target shooting he had a nice Kowa spotter scope in his closet. One day I spoke of watching hawks at my work and how I had witnessed a pair mate one day. From the courtship in January thru February to the actual 12 second deed one chilly morning. Then the actual raising of the babies until the big day when the babies left the nest the previous year.

He asked if I had any good photos. I told him how my Nikon D80 had a 300mm lens so yeah I had some nice photos. He asked if I knew how to hook my camera to a spotting scope. "Wuh?" I was intrigued. He goes to his closet and pulls out a Kowa TSN 822 scope with a 20x to 60x range and says "here, it's yours". "Wuh?"……

The Kowa company had stopped making adapters for Nikon lenses but B&H had one for my wife's digi-cam Canon powershot. That thing was zooming in to 360mm already, but coupled to that Kowa mounted to a tri-pod with camera on a second one and good gosh!! We set it up one day about 50 yards from a hawk nest and could literally see the ants crawling all over recently busted egg shells and parts of the new born chicks under the parent. Hawks trade places while the other goes off to find food. Suddenly the other parent arrives and begins feeding the chicks and we watched as if they were at arms length.

Unfortunately the powershot camera was the weak link in the chain photo-wise and the photos were kinda fuzzy, but standing on the roof of my project trailer we saw some pretty amazing stuff like some kind of National Geographic episode or something. The scope sits idle these days but that one day was pretty cool. My pop was impressed. I offered to give him back his scope but he had made up his mind that he had shot his last target.

That target is hanging on a bulletin board with one small hole in it. Next to the hole is written the date and "9 shots". It was up and right of the bullseye but he had found a recipe to fill his rounds that could cause the projectile to hit the exact same place 9 times in a row from 100 yards from a 22 rifle he built. He said it took him 50 years to do it and once he did it he was done shooting. I asked "why not do it again?" He said (I'll never forget it) "I know I did, the paper target knows I did it, and that was that". He said "I retired with a perfect score".
 
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orbital

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+

great story fixer>

::: deal ended :::
Anyone interested in getting a pair of porro bins, b&h has Nikon refurbished 8x42 Aculon A211 for $49 shipped free.
that's about the best per dollar binocular deal you'll find anywhere.
 
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orbital

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Last Fall I was starting to think of a gift for a good friend on mine & his family for Christmas . He has helped me on some projects & always there for you (or anyone for that matter)
Just didn't want to give him a flashlight & something for the rest of the family.

Had a few good ideas but nothing concrete.

One day I was looking at used stuff on B&H & stumbled across a spotting scope that was an incredible deal & was rated at Condition 10.
Now I trust B&H on condition levels for sure.
Looking at this scopes description, I noticed that it used standard 1.25" telescope eyepieces,, this was new to me & after looking into it I was super intrigued.
The eyepieces are where all the technology is in optics, gives you you eye relief & field of view.

Now I'm really intrigued because this mirrors P60 drop-ins for flashlights, in that you can always upgrade & try different things.
The excitement is now on 10 for me & I purchases the scope, hoping it was in good condition

The scope arrived and I don't think it was ever used, I mean I think it was brand new.
So now I knew exactly what my buddy & his family are getting,,, the decision was immediate.

I also purchases them a fixed magnification eyepiece that used ED glass ( it came out to around 32X magnification factoring in focal lengths ect..)
Had a new Tripod so I was going to include that.

Being a different cat, I called him & asked if he would be willing to go $100 bucks on a gift for his family (I know that sound really odd, but this was a huge gift)
He was hesitant, but also knows I'v never done him wrong.

Now intrigued himself, he said yes.

I dropped off the big 'Family Gift' & they didn't open it up right away. Days later I called & asked what they thought, he said they they were waiting till Christmas & were dying to open it,,, I said "open it & call me back"
Put it this way,, when he called me back he was nearly hyperventilating with excitement & was really at a bit of a loss for words.


I asked if he was still good w/ the $100, you should have heard his reply...:eek::thumbsup::):D


**My friend works two jobs, now he can sit out on his beautiful two tier deck with his family, the deck he made himself
& look at the stars, moon, Sasquatch on the edge of the forest couple miles away,, anything.
 
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Kestrel

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:thumbsup: Orbital

-----

Hadn't planned until now, but I guess I can add my new Vortex Ranger 1800 laser rangefinder to the thread;

https://www.dropbox.com/s/e4tm8swapqr1eix/20210206_161955.jpg?dl=0

Never having owned a laser rangefinder, it was a little smaller & lighter than I expected. :)
6x, 22mm objective; The reason I went with this model is that it has a tripod attachment point on the bottom, which is critical for my expected uses.

The one bummer is that the entire product segment seems to have been designed around CR2 cells; there is really no reason they can't bump measurements out by a few mm so as to use CR123's:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/izaj5bgowq01v10/20210206_163321.jpg?dl=0
Interchangeability would have been great for my SF T1A Titan & Minimus headlamp, for example.
 

nbp

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I am no optics expert at all, but I have wanted a pair of decent bins for a while for hiking, camping etc. Vortex is located about 1.5 hours from me so a couple weeks ago dad and I drove out there to check out their showroom. Very cool. Their building is set right next to a nature conservancy and sprawling farmland so you can test all the optics you want at basically any range you want. I was able to take a bunch of different bins outside to try them out and settled on the Diamondback HD 10x42. I found a good deal on them from a dealer online when I got home (they don’t sell out of that showroom, it’s basically a distribution warehouse). For my simple occasional needs they are terrific.
 

hsa

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Nov 21, 2015
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Terre Du Lac, MO.
Waiting for delivery (Friday) of an Orion Grandview ED 65 spotting scope that accepts 1-1/4 astronomical eyepieces and I have a bunch of those. Also a Tritech fluid panhead tripod. I have had good luck with Orion stuff before but don't know what to expect here. Anyone have experience with either of these?
 

Tasky

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Nothing too exciting I'm afraid...
We do a lot of hiking and I am one half of the forward observation team (one of the dogs is the other) for when we're scoping out the terrain ahead, spotting footpath signs, IDing landmarks, or finding ice-cream vans parked at viewpoints.

I have some Westinghouse M3 6x30 artillery binoculars dated 1943, which are in pretty good nick. There's some dirt/grit inside but for the most part they're very usable. The reticle in mills for correcting mortar splash is a cool feature. They survived WW2, and whatever else they went through before I even got my hands on them, so they're a bit precious to be taking out into the field.

Instead, I'm quite a heavy user of my Hawke Nature-Trek monocular - I have the Mod 35-211, which is 10x25.

I mainly wanted something with reasonable magnification and optics quality a couple of steps up from the cheap 8x22 Miranda, the generic £20 folding binocular things I'd been using thus far. The Mirandas weren't actually that bad as I'd had them since the 90s, in the days before cheap tat on Amazon dominated the lower end of the market... but they were old, a bit clapped out and the rubber casing had started to peel. They're also non-servicable, from what I could see... and of course 10x is better than 8x, innit!! ;)

Being the Hawke brand I typically associate with decent shooting scopes, I found them pretty good. A lot better than reviews suggested, with very little chromatic aberation and then only in very bright light... and since this is England, we don't really see much of that! :)

But they are still cheap, so certain things needed modding. There is no ¼" thread for a tripod, so I made up a cobra-weave paracord strap with a loop at the end, to give a variety of handhold options for viewing stability. Also, the lens caps are cheap junk and only one is actually attached, so they were replaced with rifle scope flip covers. The twisting eye cup alters eye relief, but the focussing collar is immediately in front of this and can be fiddly to use, so that got wrapped with a rubber-backed cable tie for easier reach.
The whole assembly sits in one of those 'tactical flashlight pouch' jobs, which wouldn't actually suit anything thinner than a Coke Can flashlight but is an excellent fit for a monocular. There's a Spudz cleaning cloth

I'd still love sonething with higher magnification but size is a factor, as is price - I need something pocketable that I can use one-handed, and I prefer it not be too expensive to replace in case I break it!!
 

orbital

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Spotting Scope Manufactures that use standard 1.25" telescope Eyepieces

Celestron

Orion

Pentax

SVBONY


Magnification of eyepiece is as follows:

The focal length of the spotting scope divided by the focal length of the eyepiece (in millimeters mm) Ex: 480/15= 32X magnification
... then 80mm objective/32X mag. gives you 2.5mm exit pupil


_______________________________________________

Important note: must read specifications for each model of these manufactures,
to confirm adaption of the standard 1.25" eyepiece
 
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Kestrel

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I have some Westinghouse M3 6x30 artillery binoculars dated 1943, which are in pretty good nick. There's some dirt/grit inside but for the most part they're very usable. The reticle in mills for correcting mortar splash is a cool feature. They survived WW2, and whatever else they went through before I even got my hands on them, so they're a bit precious to be taking out into the field. [...]
I'm actually really interested in what these are like, and would be most happy to know more or see pics. :huh:
 

Tasky

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I'm actually really interested in what these are like, and would be most happy to know more or see pics. :huh:
I'm not really a photographer and the best 'camera' I have is an old Samsung S5, but I'll put a link to a few snaps below.

As for what they're like... I have kept them pretty mucky on the outside as it's part of the history of previous owner(s), a bit like patina. Who knows where they went before I got them!

The central spindle has graduations which seem to correspond to IPD, which is pretty cool. This part is quite stiff, so retains its settings very well. The downside is that the reticle is fixed, with no apparent method of rotating it, so if your IPD is much over 62, your sighting marks will be badly on the conk!

There's no actual focus wheel, but each eyepiece is individually adjustable, so I guess that's your dioptre and focus. The adjustment range is marked from -4 to +4, but really the range is closer to 12 at either end, based on how much further the cylinders turn. The threads on these are buttery smooth, but also exceptionally light. It only takes the touch of one finger to move them, which means they are easily knocked and you'll forever be fiddling with them each time you raise them to your eyes!
The objective ends have screw-off collar caps, which hold little plastic insert rings against the objective lens. I've no idea what either of these do, but it looks like the innards are sealed with some kind of plastic putty and then the caps and rings tighten everything down while it cures. Not something I'm willing to mess with without more research or professional advice, though.

Eye relief is good, with and without glasses. Field of view is about 8º and sufficient for purpose (ie ranging targets and directing mortar fire). My lenses are flecked with grit inside, but there's no real perceptible chromatic aberation that I can detect. They're really quite good, I find.
In the left side is the reticle, which comprises horizontal deflection and vertical ranging scales in mils, which correspond to traverse and elevation on the mortar sight. I've included a shot of this, though it wasn't easy trying to hold binoculars and phone camera, and keep the view aligned, and keep it steady enough for a shot, all without disturbing the focus!

Anything else you're interested in, I'll do my best to answer, but in the meantime... Hopefully you can see these: https://imgur.com/a/ytxTLEX
 

Kestrel

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Thanks for that, including the reticle photo in particular - really interesting to see that.
(The other thing is that I'm /really/ big on 6x binoculars. :))
 

Tasky

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Thanks for that, including the reticle photo in particular - really interesting to see that.
(The other thing is that I'm /really/ big on 6x binoculars. :))
I'm always happy to geek out over my 'stuff'!
You can still find these and other artillery optics for sale at fairly reasonable prices. They were in high demand during WW2 and several makers were contracted to meet demand, so there's a good number floating on the market today. I have a 'matching' compass, too.

TBH, I really like the reticle. I'd be delighted if optics started featuring similar things, even if just ranging marks, as I find them quite useful at times. I expect they're mostly just on high end shooting scopes and maybe some spotting scopes though, neither of which are really practical to carry for general outdoor pursuits!
 

orbital

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