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Binocular NEWS ?

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#1 KennyJ

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 05:59 PM

I realise this forum probably suffers from the fact that , unlike the majority of CN forums , it is " invisible " to non - members surfing the net , but feel there are sufficient numbers of knowledgable folks who either frequent or occasionally visit this forum to make this appeal worth a shot .

My idea is to keep this thread OPEN for ANYTHING related to binoculars , which could be classified as NEWSWORTHY .

For example , from very recently , Zeiss have announced that their FL range of binoculars are to have " LOTU TEC " coatings :

http://www.zeiss.de/...1256df3003c00fb

Apparantly , " Lotu - Tec " has exceptional resilient properties which ought to be beneficial for binocular users , enabling , for example , splashes of water on lenses to be wiped away within seconds , and with complete confidence , with a microfibre cloth .

Perhaps not the most EARTH SHATTERING NEWS with which to attempt to open such a thread , but I trust anyone reading this will understand the intention , and enter into discussions with appropriate spirit :-)

Yours HOPEFULLY !

Kenny J

#2 ngc6475

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 06:57 PM

Multi-coatings for glass surfaces are indeed becoming more sophisticated. Still, the idea that Zeiss could come up with permanent coatings that will shed water is welcome news. Imagine coatings on the surfaces of binocular glass that would resist water spotting because water doesn't adhere to the optics! I didn't notice any direct references regarding the chemicals from which these coatings are composed, but I have witnessed some incredible surface coatings that are polymer based and these will shed water in a similar manner. These coatings require regular maintenance, however, unlike Zeiss' optical coatings, and are intended for industrial purposes.

I take it that Zeiss is applying these new coatings to eyeglasses as well as binocular optics. I wonder what one has to do to find an optician who has access to this technology? Is this new or has it been available long?

#3 Rich N

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 07:01 PM

Thanks, Kenny!

Great idea (subject) for a thread.

Rich

#4 Pinewood

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 07:04 PM

Walter,

In Europe, more so than in the States, consumers buy eyeglasses by the brand of the lenses. Zeiss and Rodenstock are two brands which come to mind. There is at least one optician in New York, who advertises Zeiss lenses. I do not even dare ask the price.

Happy observing,
Arthur

#5 Erik D

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 09:23 PM

Kenny,

Good One.

Pentax DCF SP:

http://www.eagleopti...urch=1&pid=3693

Note the reference to:

"Scratch-resistant hydrophobic coating on all exposed ocular and objective lenses dares dust and water droplets to interfere with great viewing."

Do you think that's similar to what Ziess is offering?

Erik D

#6 Rich N

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 09:33 PM

I have Zeiss hard coatings on my eye glass (plastic) lenses. The Zeiss hard coatings are simply outstanding.

I don't think Zeiss made the lenses, just applied the coating.

Rich

#7 Rich V.

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 10:36 PM

The Pentax SP description:

"Scratch-resistant hydrophobic coating on all exposed ocular and objective lenses dares dust and water droplets to interfere with great viewing."


Steven Ingraham said in his BVD review of the SP: "Pentax also says the external glass surfaces are coated with a hydrophobic compound to prevent fogging. I could not verify the effectiveness of this coating. The glasses I had fogged as easily as any others in my stable, and took just as long to clear."

Maybe Zeiss is on to something altogether new but I can't help but suspect there might be some hype involved. After all "new" and "improved" are something everybody wants; companies depend on this to keep the market alive.

I could certainly be wrong, though, and Zeiss may have made a breakthrough in coatings technology! Let's hope for a side-by-side review sometime to prove the merits of the new coatings.

Rich V

#8 Erik D

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Posted 28 October 2006 - 11:08 PM

Rich V,

The last time I met SI was about 3 years ago at the Cape May NJ Birding show. He was working for Zeiss. I believe Kenny has exchanged email with him since. Perhaps Kenny can find out more for us?

Off Topic: I see you have a 7X26 Custom and two 8X23s. Which one do you use more often? What features do you like.

I like the optics of my 7X26 Custom a lot. Bought it at the end of 2005 after studying SI's review on BVD several times.(I returned 3 compcts last year) I feel it's a bit on the bulky side to be a subcompact. I don't want to stick it in my pocket either becasue there is no way to cover the objectives. The neck strap supplied with the bino is worthless. Focus wheel can use a update too...I don't think the design has changed for 20 years....but I have yet to find another compact of this size & price range with the same bright optics and good resolution. Still searching.....

Erik D

#9 Rich V.

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 12:28 AM

Erik, I would love to hear that Zeiss does have an innovation; hopefully we'll hear more about it! Perhaps they have done their homework better than Pentax.

As an aside about the compacts, I have the original version 7x26 Custom Compact from '71. Packing 7x50s in a backpack made me a believer in the wisdom of compacts!

The 7x26s are a bit easier to look through with their bigger exit pupil and wider FOV at 7x but the eye relief is actually a bit too much for use without eyeglasses. I have to hold the eyecups slightly away from my brow. They were my compact standbys for years and have many miles on them.

Both 8x23 Nikons have the same form factor but the aspheric Diplomats are a bit heavier, 11 oz. vs. 8 oz. I wouldn't call any of these "ultra compact". The metal framed and armored Diplomat does have a solid, quality feel that the inexpensive plastic Travelite can't match. The optics of the Travelite are surprisingly good, however. Despite a relatively narrow 6° FOV, the super sharp, bright views of the Diplomat make it my favorite of the three. It's 14mm ER is perfect for my eyes.

Here's the review that got me interested in the Diplomats:

http://betterviewdes.../NkDimat8x.html

Steve Ingraham's enthusiasm towards these little bins made me give them a try! They DO seem to have a "magic" sharpness and brightness that makes them stand out from the crowd.

Still, for sheer easy view the 8x30E2s beat any of the compacts hands down, though. As I've gotten older, I don't use the compacts as much as I used to.

Rich V

#10 KennyJ

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 08:59 AM

Binocular NEWS !

I found a nice review of Minox 10 x 44 ED waterproof Porro prism model here :

I must say it looks and sounds like " my kinda bino " :-)

http://www.ephotozin...cfm?test_id=409

Regards , Kenny

#11 KennyJ

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 09:10 AM

Binocular NEWS !

Steiner's latest " compact " offerings .

Note they are apparantly aimed at " HUNTERS " ! :-)

http://www.steiner-b...atorpocket.html

Regards , Kenny

#12 KennyJ

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 09:19 AM

Binocular NEWS !

EYECATCHING binoculars , anyone ?

http://www.globalsou.../1001618345.htm

Kenny

#13 KennyJ

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 09:45 AM

Binocular NEWS !

Nikon's latest Monarch series .

http://www.ephotozin...cfm?NewsID=3187

Kenny

#14 Rich V.

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 10:39 AM

Kenny, in regards to the Minox WP Porro, I really like what they've done. I've always wished for a WP internal focus Porro and Minox seems to be the only company that is trying!

My only reservation would be the relatively narrow FOV, a compromise likely needed to provide the 16mm eye relief and possibly to reduce CA.

I don't mind a 51° AFOV in an astro binocular, and I have come to expect the restriction in compacts, but for a full sized CF bin designed for birders, I think I would pass.

In my self-centered little universe, I would like to see a binocular with the optical attributes of Nikon's E2 in a WP and internal CF configuration. I suppose if pressed, I would even settle for a 60° AFOV! I guess I can dream on!

Rich V

#15 KennyJ

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 11:21 AM

Binocular NEWS !

Steiner -- publicity stunt or not ?

Any comments ?

http://www.steiner-b..._a_licking.html

Kenny

#16 KennyJ

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 11:24 AM

Binocular NEWS !

This model , or it's 8x brethren , was mentioned not long ago on this forum .

It's a KOWA , and it LOOKS very nice :-)

Anyone tried one ?

http://www.buytelesc...t.asp?pid=11040

Regards , Kenny

#17 777Guy

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 11:45 AM

Kenny,
Really great idea to have Binocular News. Thanks for all the info. You must have had a sleepless night and started surfing and found all this stuff!!
If a few of us contribute similar info on a regular basis maybe this forum will prove useful to other CN members.

#18 Mark9473

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 11:52 AM

Steiner -- publicity stunt or not ?

Any comments ?

http://www.steiner-b..._a_licking.html


they say it's a tire from a 3500 lb car, not that the tire is still attached to the car.

#19 Erik D

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 12:09 PM

Kenny,

This one caught my eyes a few month back. A pocket Nikon with 8.2 deg FOV for under $100. No mention of Phase Coating...

http://www.eagleopti...urch=1&pid=4534

I saw the Nikon 8X25 ATB in a LL Bean catalog a few month back. I don't recall seeing it "in stock" yet at EO. And I prefer double hinged design NOT.

This one is a little more, less FOV but single hinged:

http://www.eagleopti...urch=1&pid=4602

I hope the optics are better than the Brunton Echo 8X25 I ordered and returned last fall. Has anyone look thru one yet?

Comments on either one?

BTW, I prefer roofs for Cloudy Days. Keep looking....;-))

Erik D

#20 KennyJ

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Posted 29 October 2006 - 01:17 PM

Binocular NEWS !

My thoughts turned to our absent friend Swedepat when I saw these !

http://www.eagleopti...urch=1&pid=4698

Regards , Kenny

#21 brocknroller

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Posted 01 November 2006 - 03:06 PM

Superlative idea, Kenny! I'd like to see this thread permanently positioned on top of the forum with the reviews, etc. so we can keep up on news as it breaks (particularly since the highlight feature for new posts doesn't always work on my computer).

Here's my first contribution...

HOW low CAN YOU GO?

As John Barsness predicted, p-coated roofs would hit rock bottom prices, and here they are folks -- 10x50 p-coated JAPANESE-made WP/FP roof bins for $149.97 (Sportsman's Guide Buyer's Club price: $134.97!). The 12x50 model is $179.

Cabela, another hunting supply store, offered its Pine Ridge 10x42 NON-p coated roofs for $159, so the new p-coated Redfield Aurora is a price breakthrough.

The FOV is narrowish like "mid-priced roofs" (5* on the 10x50 model). Physically they look like the Audubon HHS. For the distance birder/hunter/sports fan on a tight budget, they might be serviceable.
http://www.sportsman...cb.asp?a=282486

Here's Outdoor Magazine's review of the previous NON-p coated Redfield Aurora 10x50 roofs ("sharp out to the edges"):
http://www.outdoorli.../gear/article/0,19912,264264,00.html

* courtesy of brocknoculars newswire service

#22 mooreorless

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Posted 01 November 2006 - 05:18 PM

Brock,Your link doesn't work for the review of the Redfield Aurora non p-coated 10x50.I looked for the review in my Outdoor Life magazines and the year that has this in, was trashed by accident.
Steve

#23 KennyJ

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Posted 01 November 2006 - 05:22 PM

Brock ,

That link didn't work for me either !

Chances are ( although I won't bother going into any mathematical detail or attempted formula ! ) that this link won't work for ANYBODY else , either .

Regards , Kenny

#24 mooreorless

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Posted 01 November 2006 - 07:02 PM

Hi Brock and Kenny, I checked Outdoor Life site via of google :-) and found this on the Older non p-coated Refield Aurora 10x50 and here is most of what it said-"Eyecups don't lock up well.At least the diopter setting has clicks.This Redfield is like a sturdy workhorse not much to look at but able to pull a heavy load.Image was clear [sharp].Overall rating very good".ER 19mm field of view [real/apparent [5*/50*] Price $500

This was about all that was posted on this binocular on the Outdoor Life site.

I do remember seeing these in Cabela's and the price wasn't $500 more like %250/maybe $300 this was the non p-coated model. If I had the extra money and didn't just buy a Leupold 6x30 Yosemite porro I would look into buying one of these p/coated Redfields off of Gary Olen [Sportman's Guide}.


Steve

#25 Erik D

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Posted 01 November 2006 - 08:45 PM

Binocular NEWS !

My thoughts turned to our absent friend Swedepat when I saw these !

http://www.eagleopti...urch=1&pid=4698

Regards , Kenny


Kenny,

I have the same model EO Ranger but in 8X32. They were the lightest, most compact 8X32 I could found in the US 2.5 years ago. Dimensions and wt are the same as the 6X32. Before I purchased the 8X32 I briefly considered th 6X model. IIRC, a forum member with the 6X posted on the Amart Birding Optics No Photo Fourm(which you founded some years back)about using it to view art works inside the Vatican. He said it was a nice urban bino. I elected to go with the 8X model instead becasue FOV of the 8X is 7.5 deg/60 deg APFOV. FOV of the 6X is 7.8 deg/46.8 deg APFOV.

If I am driving somewhere for nature observing 8X32 is the smallest bino I like to carry for general field use. But they are still a bit "chunky" to carry around in my backpack for international air travel or on a all day city tour where I may or may not use them for a few minutes.

Did you write an essay titled " Is 8X32 small enough?"

Sometimes NOT. I'd SETTLE for a subcompact 8X21 or 8X25 if I am on a week long business trip and wanted to take something REALLY small. I'd much prefer using binos bigger than 21mm otherwise.

I am glad I selected the 8X32 model. I've found 6X binos only marginally useful for ME as an optical aid. My Russian 6X30 12.5 deg SWA bino have stayed in the case during most of 2006.

I also found the 3 ft close focus of my EO more for a 'bragging rights' than pratical use. I guess 3 ft close focus beats 5 ft but I can not merge images closer than 5 ft in the bino mode. Works fine as a monocular but I already have a 7X25 monocular that can close focus on my finger tips, and is a lot more compact. I use binos every day but very rarely for viewing objects closer tha 3 meters.....then only to find out how close I can focus them to search for fine details on a US dollar Bill. ;-))

Erik D






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