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Vixen Foresta Build Quality: What Should I Expect?

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#1 Ty Williams

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 01:38 AM

I just got a set of Vixen Foresta 7x50 porros for my Christmas present. While their optical and mechanical performance is generally quite good (with one significant exception), the build quality or fit-n-finish has me scratching my head a bit. There's a number of places where small details make them feel, well, cheap, for lack of a better description. Things that you wouldn't even think about on a $50 pair of binos yet that stick out like a sore thumb on a $300 set of binos. For instance, the very front of the tubes near the objective lenses are covered with a ring of plastic that goes about an inch up the tube. The seam between that front ring and the covering for most of the tube is terrible. It's uneven, the edges don't mate well together, and in fact it feels like it might start peeling up. The eyecups rattle loosely and make quite a bit of noise. There's just several issues like that.

Again, the real business of being binos is covered in spades, I have no objection to their performance. I'm just wondering if this is a case where $299 of those $300 went into the glass and so every one that comes off the assembly line is like this or if the build quality of the Vixen Forestas is generally better than this and I need to contact the seller about exchanging for a set that met typical quality standards.

What do you all think?

#2 plyscope


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Posted 10 December 2012 - 03:41 AM

My Foresta 7x50 does not have the rough edges where the objective ring meets the plastic armouring on the objective tube, it is neat and well done. On the other hand the eyecups do rattle slightly.

My biggest concern is the bridge joining the eyepieces (ocular bridge) is thin and will flex with little pressure. It has not been a problem in use though. The optics are great and I think it is a good binocular for the price.

Mine looks just like the pictures in this Binomania review.
web page

#3 ronharper



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Posted 10 December 2012 - 08:59 AM

You have hit upon the key to Chinese binocular engineering. The result is cost effective, in a way, for a while. Hand it to them, they are good at it, and successful.

#4 FrankKD


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Posted 10 December 2012 - 11:43 AM

I have a pair as well and haven't noted either of the issues you mentioned. Maybe you received a subpar unit? I didn't notice any issues with the objective end covering and I use the binocular with the eyecups fully collapsed. That may explain why I haven't noted the issues mentioned here.

I would agree that the optics speak for themselves though. Bright, sharp, well saturated colors with little color fringing in the sweet spot.

#5 BobinKy



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Posted 10 December 2012 - 01:41 PM

I have a pair of Vixen Foresta 7x50 porros. No issues after three years. Probably the best investment--glass per dollar--as any other binocular in my collection. If you are not happy, send them back for a replacement, if possible.

#6 Stacy


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Posted 10 December 2012 - 09:15 PM

What you should expect now, is what you expected when you bought them. To be satisfied with your purchase. Fit and finish is an important part of the package for most and if there is an issue with it, send em back without a second thought. I just bought a Chinese pair in the same price range and the fit and finish is quite impressive. Yours should be as well.

#7 Ty Williams

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 12:27 AM

For those of you that have them, is your focus adjustment completely slop/play/backlash free? Mine is absolutely perfect and I'd hate to exchange a set with only cosmetic features for one with perfect cosmetics but sloppy focus.

#8 edwincjones


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Posted 11 December 2012 - 07:17 AM

I have had a pair for several years with no problem.
I do worry about the build-seems too light-but no problems yet


#9 FrankKD


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Posted 12 December 2012 - 08:33 AM

No backlash in the focus knob on my pair nor on another pair that I had the privelege of using last year.

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