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Equipment Discussions >> Binoculars

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rolandlinda3
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Reged: 01/24/06

Loc: Crozet VA 22932
Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new
      #5605638 - 01/04/13 09:58 PM

We send 7x35 Bushnell Falcons to go with astronomy kits in the Philippines. Out of 30 we have sent or use here in the states, all worked well. However, we get some science teachers who I would like to get one with a little more aperture but still inexpensive. Any of you try anything that is less than $60 (the Falcon's run about $30) that consistently works well and can stand some abuse...and is still regularly offered by retailers? 7-8 power maximum. Thanks for reading.

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BillC
on a new path
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Reged: 06/04/04

Loc: Lake Stevens, WA, USA
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: rolandlinda3]
      #5605723 - 01/04/13 11:00 PM

My friend:

Even at $60, you aren’t going to find one that "consistently works well and can stand some abuse." I most certainly like and appreciate your endeavors; I have volunteered in my community for years. However, just like some fishermen like to brag about the Great White they caught on 7-pound test line, some people would indicate you can get the Holy Grail of binos for the price of a meal at McDonalds. It’s not so. You do not need to spend that money to get a European Legend to have a good binocular. But, unless you stumble on a massive liquidation, $30 will buy a paperweight.



Cheers,

BillC

Edited by Erix (01/06/13 07:56 PM)


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hallelujah
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Reged: 07/14/06

Loc: North Star over Colorado
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: rolandlinda3]
      #5605776 - 01/04/13 11:35 PM

http://www.amazon.com/Bushnell-Falcon-10x50-Angle-Binoculars/dp/B000051ZOA/re...

http://www.amazon.com/Bushnell-Natureview-Porro-Birding-Binocular/dp/B000P8Z0...


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edwincjones
Close Enough
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Reged: 04/10/04

Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: hallelujah]
      #5606226 - 01/05/13 10:03 AM

I hate to disagree with BillC,
because he is always(or at least almost always) right
but I can see more, most of the time,
with the poorest of binoculars
than with my naked eyes
(well, maybe not with those 20-140x70s)

edj


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*skyguy*
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 12/31/08

Loc: Western New York
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: rolandlinda3]
      #5606391 - 01/05/13 11:33 AM

The Bushnell Natureview 8x40 Porro Prism Birding Binoculars ... already mentioned ... would make an excellent choice for an inexpensive upgrade to your current binoculars:

Bushnell 8x40 Binoculars

They should provide many years of good service as long as they are well cared for and not abused.

When searching for new binoculars in your price range ... I would avoid "Zoom" binoculars, "Ruby" coated models, Perma-Focus and Roof-Prism Binoculars. Look for: Poro-Prism binoculars with coated or fully coated optics (multicoated better), BK7 prisms (BAK-4 better), center focus knob (avoid lever focus) and a good exchange policy from a reputable seller if the binoculars are delivered out of collimation.


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rolandlinda3
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Reged: 01/24/06

Loc: Crozet VA 22932
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: *skyguy*]
      #5607055 - 01/05/13 06:01 PM

Thanks very much. will look at the Bushnell 8x40s. Had seen them but had never tried them. I have Fugi 16x70s so I know what prices can be like and what is junk. However, the Falcon's, for the price and use I have seen, are wonderful. So if they have another one in the line that might work, I will look at it. I agree about zoom/ruby coated and similar junk advertising. Thanks again for reading.

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careysub
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Loc: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: rolandlinda3]
      #5607357 - 01/05/13 09:48 PM

The Celestron Outland X 8x42 are very nice, they cost a little more though - $58 on Amazon.

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Robert A.
sage
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Reged: 01/21/05

Loc: Johnson City TN, South Central...
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: careysub]
      #5610298 - 01/07/13 02:10 PM

Consider the model that used to be the Minolta Activa---

Ebay page Brookstone binoculars

Ebay page Binger binoculars 3 available

I did a search on "8x45" in the binoculars section.

I have had the Minolta model and the Garrett Classic model and they work very well, though they are more expensive than what you a looking for. All these have a high density plastic in the chasis of the binoculars. I have found them to hold collimation okay.

If you want to go with a metal chasis, the Oberwerk 8x40 LW is available. It has a wide view so it has an outer edges that are not focused very well but it is not objectionable. I find the view better than the old Mead 7x42 that was sold about 10 years ago. (Some say the same as the Bushnell Discover 7x42) I don't know how it will deal with rough handling.
Oberwerk page 8x40 LW for $69.

Rob.


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Robert A.
sage
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Reged: 01/21/05

Loc: Johnson City TN, South Central...
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: Robert A.]
      #5610335 - 01/07/13 02:31 PM

Sometimes a big brand will have some binoculars made for them that can be a good value.

Coleman has had the 8x40 Silhouette made for them. I wonder if it has a ruby coating on the objectives.
If it is a Blue coated binoculars, it might be a good deal.

Menards webpage for Coleman 8x40 binoculars


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KWB
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Reged: 09/30/06

Loc: Westminster,Co Elev.5400 feet
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: Robert A.]
      #5611288 - 01/08/13 01:28 AM

Almost any kind of objective opinion- be it one of poor value for the money,overall poor performer,extremely hard to keep collimated,not recommended,poor light transmission,optical abberations,etc.,can easily be substituted as an adequate description of opinion instead of using the word junk. Any astro gear is fair game for ones perceived opinion as to the value for one's astro dollar,but also deserves a fair critique that refrains from just using one singularly negative word.

Using the term junk is also unimaginative,non-descipt and unfair to the manufacturer and to those that read these posts. Using such a dismissive term really provides no useful information and serves only to provide fuel as to provoking potential arguments from folks with differing opinions.

Speaking on behalf of the Administrative and Moderating staff here at CN,I ask that we all please help steer clear from the further use of the word.


Edited by KWB (01/08/13 10:39 AM)


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THEPLOUGH
ELEVEN Grandchildren; FIVE Ducklings
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Loc: Carlisle, Cumbria, ENGLAND
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: KWB]
      #5611614 - 01/08/13 09:54 AM

... Well said sir...

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Rich V.
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Reged: 01/02/05

Loc: Lake Tahoe area, Nevada, USA
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: THEPLOUGH]
      #5611873 - 01/08/13 12:34 PM

Perhaps I'm missing an undisclosed edit somewhere; I only see the word "junk" used once in a very general manner.



Rich


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BillC
on a new path
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Reged: 06/04/04

Loc: Lake Stevens, WA, USA
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: KWB]
      #5611925 - 01/08/13 01:12 PM

Quote:

Almost any kind of objective opinion- be it one of poor value for the money,overall poor performer,extremely hard to keep collimated,not recommended,poor light transmission,optical abberations,etc.,can easily be substituted as an adequate description of opinion instead of using the word junk. Any astro gear is fair game for ones perceived opinion as to the value for one's astro dollar,but also deserves a fair critique that refrains from just using one singularly negative word.

Using the term junk is also unimaginative,non-descipt and unfair to the manufacturer and to those that read these posts. Using such a dismissive term really provides no useful information and serves only to provide fuel as to provoking potential arguments from folks with differing opinions.

Speaking on behalf of the Administrative and Moderating staff here at CN,I ask that we all please help steer clear from the further use of the word.





“Speaking on behalf of the Administrative and Moderating staff here at CN, I ask that we all please help steer clear from the further use of the word.”

Kenny, your post on moderation was not as ambiguous as some I have seen. We should not us the word “junk” in our posts. Got it; ‘doesn’t mean I won’t THINK it. The main problem for me will be to REMEMBER it.

Even so, while not challenging you IN THE LEAST, I would like to offer the other side of the coin.

This thread was titled “Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars.”

What constitutes “decent”? What constitutes “good”? What constitutes “great”? What constitutes “reasonable”? What constitutes “inexpensive”? etc. etc. Should the criteria you espouse for “junk” also apply to such words? How many times have responders had to ask myriad questions to hone in on a quisitors real problem? And how many times did that take us away from the topic at hand?

Going a little deeper, who’s version of good, better, best are we to heed? After my time in optics, I know I’m NOT QUALIFIED to offer such pronouncements. The first time I ever got into trouble on CN was addressing posts regarding a “GREAT” low-rent bino. The fellow making the claims was not only brand new to CN, he was brand new to bino ownership. I had been inside a number of the instruments in question, and had seen so many that were out of collimation right from the importer, my OPINION was quite different from his. Clinical data can do that.

The same is true with “inexpensive.” Right now, I’m sitting home because, outta work for months, I don’t have the gas to waste going out. Still, I consider a $250 bino inexpensive. But, I know there are others who would consider it “as good as it gets”; folks who couldn’t describe any of the Seidel aberrations or know that binoculars NEED to be aligned. Who’s right?

Quantifying even more, so many times have I seen binos professed to be “spot on” as to alignment, when the collimator showed them to be out of collimation by several times published tolerances.

You can say, “Bill, get real; your average binocular enthusiast doesn’t have the experience to think about such things.” You would, of course, be correct. But then that lends credence to the use of the word “junk,” doesn’t it? It is just a word people use to describe the negative aspects of an instrument when they don’t know the clinical terms to use.

No, I’ll not be using it. AND, I see your point. But, it is something for your consideration.

BillC

PS Roland PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, don’t feel picked on. Yours was just the one in a thousand threads that was handy . . . THIS TIME.


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KWB
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Reged: 09/30/06

Loc: Westminster,Co Elev.5400 feet
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: BillC]
      #5611977 - 01/08/13 01:41 PM

OK,Bill

Let us now proceed back to the thread topic of reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars,even if there are only a few such examples that may exist here in 2013. An interesting and educational thread so far.


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BobinKy
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Reged: 04/27/07

Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: rolandlinda3]
      #5612146 - 01/08/13 03:14 PM

B&H Photo has these listed on their website in the $60 range, with positive customer reviews posted. I have no experience with these models. However, they are in the 8x40 and $60 range, and can be returned to the vendor within 30 days. As you know the 8x40 is a good multi-purpose binocular.

Unfortunately, I am in the "you get what you pay for" camp when it comes to buying optics. If you are giving these as gifts, I suggest you think about the long-term quality of the gift. By that I mean, increase the budget to at least $100 to $150.


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hallelujah
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Reged: 07/14/06

Loc: North Star over Colorado
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars new [Re: BobinKy]
      #5612199 - 01/08/13 03:45 PM

Quote:

B&H Photo has these listed on their website in the $60 range...




Here's one more:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/314389-REG/Olympus_118760_10x50_Trooper...


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rolandlinda3
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Reged: 01/24/06

Loc: Crozet VA 22932
Re: Reviewing inexpensive but decent small binoculars [Re: hallelujah]
      #5616350 - 01/10/13 09:55 PM

Very good suggestions, folks. We will be checking some of them out in the next few months but have to let it lay until we get back from another mission trip. There are plenty of candidates for me to examine, so I plan to look at the evals and specs, probably choose a couple, use them, give those away, then settle on a choice in the long run. Thanks again.

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