Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

The new Swarovski SLC 56's under the stars

  • Please log in to reply
129 replies to this topic

#101 Foobaria

Foobaria

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 513
  • Joined: 16 Apr 2017
  • Loc: New Mexico, USA

Posted 07 October 2018 - 06:33 PM

Family portrait of the eyepieces of the SLC 56's.

 

attachicon.gif 6249096-SLC 56's eyepieces vs 2.jpg

Eric, what's do you think's the best of these 3 for astronomy, star gazing, nebulas, star clusters etc.  I was thinking 15x first but now maybe 10x or 8x given light concentration, exit pupil, hand-held use, etc.  Any recommendations of one over the other.   Actually i read your review closer, its all there, seems 15x 56 is the way to go here.  Thx again. 


Edited by Foobaria, 07 October 2018 - 07:24 PM.


#102 Erik Bakker

Erik Bakker

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Moderators
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 8,951
  • Joined: 10 Aug 2006
  • Loc: Netherlands, Europe

Posted 09 October 2018 - 06:42 AM

For handholding most of the observing time, the SLC 10x56 would be probably my choice out of the SLC 56 series for a combination of deep sky and daytime use. For the views of most deep sky objects, the SLC 15x56 is hard to beat, but does so more comfortably and for a much longer time on a tripod. But that does take away some of the beauty and freedom from binocular observing. Yet do not underestimate the comfort and brightness of the views in the SLC 8x56's, working to it's benefit especially in twilight and under very dark skies.

Choosing the right binocular is a very personal thing, depending on personal preferences, sky conditions, other instruments one has, to name a few. 


  • Stellarfire and StarDustBin like this

#103 dries1

dries1

    Ranger 4

  • -----
  • Posts: 383
  • Joined: 26 Oct 2017
  • Loc: Northwest Delaware

Posted 09 October 2018 - 07:38 PM

The 15X56 SLCs are an amazing glass for the night sky, and I have learned to use them hand held without a tripod, as I prefer the freedom of hand held use. It truly is an amazing glass.

By the way what is this new Nikon that is coming out with 50mm aperture, just curious. 

 

Andy W.



#104 AZ_SkyWatcher

AZ_SkyWatcher

    Explorer 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 56
  • Joined: 17 Jun 2011

Posted 09 October 2018 - 10:19 PM

Anyone use this SLC 56 with glasses?   Does it work okay? 

I have a fairly strong prescription and always observe using the SLC 15x56 with my glasses on.  I am able to see the entire field of view, and would HIGHLY recommend them.


  • Zachricornus likes this

#105 kcl31

kcl31

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 149
  • Joined: 30 May 2007
  • Loc: San Jose CA

Posted 10 October 2018 - 09:19 AM

Anyone use this SLC 56 with glasses? Does it work okay?

I use my SLC8x56 with glasses all the time and there is no problem. As a matter of fact, it is the most comfortable binoculars to use with glasses I’ve ever used. Which is probably a result of super long eyerelief and big exit pupil combination.
  • Erik Bakker likes this

#106 EverlastingSky

EverlastingSky

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,035
  • Joined: 12 Sep 2006
  • Loc: Vancouver Canada

Posted 10 October 2018 - 03:03 PM

The 15X56 SLCs are an amazing glass for the night sky, and I have learned to use them hand held without a tripod, as I prefer the freedom of hand held use. It truly is an amazing glass.

By the way what is this new Nikon that is coming out with 50mm aperture, just curious. 

 

Andy W.

I think Hakaan is referring to the Nikon WX in post #97.



#107 tmichaelbanks

tmichaelbanks

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 306
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2017

Posted 20 November 2018 - 11:21 PM

Hello Erik,

 

I recently ordered a SLC 10x56 and had a quick question for you because you reviewed all three SLCs on this thread.

 

I intend to use the 10x56s mostly handheld for nighttime observing, but if I want to mount them on a tripod do I need Swarovski's tripod adapter, or will a standard adapter work?

 

Thanks,

Mike



#108 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008
  • Loc: 802,701½ C.E.

Posted 21 November 2018 - 04:02 AM

Hello Erik,

 

I recently ordered a SLC 10x56 and had a quick question for you because you reviewed all three SLCs on this thread.

 

I intend to use the 10x56s mostly handheld for nighttime observing, but if I want to mount them on a tripod do I need Swarovski's tripod adapter, or will a standard adapter work?

 

Thanks,

Mike

Swarovski's SLC adapter is expensive. If you don't want to spend a lot, any decent, sturdy adapter for roof prism binoculars will do. I use a no-longer-available Pentax adapter with my 15x56 SLC. Enjoy your new 10x56.


Edited by Man in a Tub, 21 November 2018 - 04:02 AM.


#109 Erik Bakker

Erik Bakker

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Moderators
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 8,951
  • Joined: 10 Aug 2006
  • Loc: Netherlands, Europe

Posted 21 November 2018 - 05:19 AM

Thanks or chiming in Todd.

 

To it's credit, the Swarovski tripod adapter works well and transforms the screw-in type into a quick-lock pin that can be left on the bins permanently, just needing to be locked in via the pin to the tripod adapter. If you use them often on and off a tripod, that may be an advantage for some. But it is very expensive. And a sturdy standard adapter should work well. Just check with your dealer to make sure yours does too.


  • Stellarfire likes this

#110 Bobby Dee

Bobby Dee

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 8
  • Joined: 20 Nov 2018

Posted 21 November 2018 - 07:44 AM

An alternative, slightly cheaper, option is the Outdoorsman adapter.

 

https://outdoorsmans...nocular-adapter

 

I've used both and prefer the Outdoorsman, it has a neater form factor and a very positive retention. The Swaro is perhaps a bit over-engineered.

 

Bob.



#111 StarDustBin

StarDustBin

    Ranger 4

  • -----
  • Posts: 306
  • Joined: 17 Sep 2018
  • Loc: Lisbon

Posted 21 November 2018 - 08:49 AM

Do not forget the quite affordable classical Berlebach solution:

 

https://www.berlebac...sprache=english


  • Stellarfire likes this

#112 tmichaelbanks

tmichaelbanks

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 306
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2017

Posted 21 November 2018 - 11:44 AM

Thank you all very much for the quick replies and the variety of suggestions.

 

It's good to know that the SLCs can accept standard adapters.  From the product descriptions I was concerned only the Swarovski adapter would work.  I have a couple of adapters on hand I can try, but I suspect my Oberwerk heavy duty adapter might be too thick and my Promaster too thin for the SLC weight.  The links you all have provided look promising.

 

Because of excessive rain and clouds the past few months, observing opportunities where I live have been short and few.  A clear sky has often hazed up in a matter of minutes.  I'm hoping that the 10x56 will work well at night handheld for 10 to 20 minute sessions, without having to drag out a tripod and accessories.



#113 John F

John F

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,011
  • Joined: 16 Feb 2004
  • Loc: Pacific Northwest

Posted 24 November 2018 - 01:33 AM

StarDustBin, on 21 Nov 2018 - 05:49 AM, said:

Do not forget the quite affordable classical Berlebach solution:

 

https://www.berlebac...sprache=english

The Berlebach tripod adapter is the one that I use and it works with all 4 of the Swarovski binoculars that I use for binocular astronomy including the 15x56 SLC (i.e., the most recent model that is currently in production).  The 15x56s are larger in size than the 42mm & 50mm models so it takes a little more effort to attach and dis-attach them to the binocular adapter than it does with my other three smaller binoculars.  Nevertheless, it still works well enough with the 15x56s that I satisfied with it and plan to keep using it.    

 

John Finnan


  • Stellarfire and StarDustBin like this

#114 tmichaelbanks

tmichaelbanks

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 306
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2017

Posted 28 November 2018 - 12:10 PM

New Swarovski 10x56s - The View Is Very, Very Good...

But...even so, it's not quite the large jump in optical quality I was expecting.  Perhaps I've simply rediscovered what many on this forum already know, that squeezing out those last increments of optical performance can be expensive.  This hobby is a journey, and this is my latest step.  I'm still not sure if I'll keep the Swarovski 10x56s, but I thought I would write down some first impressions and ask for suggestions.

I have been whining about the rainy fall here in southern New England for months, and yesterday I heard that it's officially been the wettest stretch on record from September through November.  Observing opportunities have frequently been too short to set up and cool down my XT8, and even walking my tripod and 15x70s out onto the deck has been no defense against skies that seem to haze up in a matter of minutes.

 

In my LP area the best views are almost always overhead, so I got the notion that a premium pair of handheld binoculars would be a good addition to the stable.  Skies clear?  Grab the binos, lean back in the chair and enjoy.  I already have a pair of Canon IS 10x30s, which are good for this sort of thing, but their aperture has always seemed too small and with my glasses I can't see the entire field even with the eyecups rolled down.



#115 tmichaelbanks

tmichaelbanks

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 306
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2017

Posted 28 November 2018 - 12:11 PM

Enter the 10x56s, my decision admittedly swayed by a 15% discount at Sport Optics.  As Erik has written previously, these are truly beautiful binoculars, solid and weighty but comfortable to hold.  Horizontally, much of the weight rests naturally on your palms just below your pinky fingers, which in turn makes you assume an elbows-in posture to steady the shakes.  Looking overhead, your fingers fall naturally onto the wide bridge with your thumbs in the deep cutouts.  I found that the overhead grip allows for a surprising amount of balanced fine motor control of the aim.  There is enough eye relief to see the entire field with my glasses, although the strong prescription in my right eye induces occasional blackouts because it's at a slightly different distance from the eyepiece than my left eye.

I'm an amateur a little over a year in this hobby, but it's easy to see that optically these are very, very good.  In daylight, the clarity and sharpness is outstanding, and the wide field and good eye relief make for very comfortable viewing.  In low light, the large objectives do make for a bright view, which in turn makes it easier to focus.  Although these are a bit brighter in daylight and low light than my Canon 10x30s, I have to say that the Canons are not very far behind in revealing fine detail with the IS turned on.  Color saturation is discernibly better with the 10x56s versus the 10x30s.  Red berries poking through green arborvitae branches in sunlight match the colors my unaided eyes see, whereas the 10x30s are tinted very slightly toward the orange.

 

Under night skies, scanning and panning for targets above 75 degrees elevation, the 10x56s are a lot of fun.  Handheld, their larger objectives reach deeper as you would expect and star colors are vivid.  Lying back in a zero-gravity chair, they are easy to keep steady.  Stars don't distort until right at the edge of the field stop.  The larger objectives provide a "rich field" experience.  Swapping back and forth with my OB 15x70s the 10x56s don't give up very much in the view.  In fact, asthetically I found myself drawn to the wider, richer FOV of the 10x56s.  You can easily pick out the open clusters in Auriga and the very faint red nebular tint.  The star clouds around the Double Cluster are easily visible as well.  The 15x70s can see those clouds of course, but in my opinion the view isn't as nice.  And what of the 10x30s? They can see those star clouds also, but you have to work at it and the colors aren't as nice.  Not bad, though, for 30mm versus 56mm.  I'd like to report on more observations and comparisons, but of course the sky began to haze up and cloud over.  Session time, 15 minutes.


  • Mark9473 likes this

#116 tmichaelbanks

tmichaelbanks

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 306
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2017

Posted 28 November 2018 - 12:12 PM

So what's not to like?  A very minor niggle is the motion of the twist-up eyecups.  To me, the motion is a bit vague, not as high-quality as the rest of the binocular, although once set they are fine.  At just under 3 lbs., they are much easier to hold steady than my 5.5 lb. 15x70s,, but I'm not sure I would hang them around my neck for a long hike.  And the view, it's very, very good.  But, I'm still struggling with the price/performance tradeoff.  A pair of Canon IS 10x42s have just a bit less FOV and with the IS engaged would probably show as much, possibly more.  The Canons 10x42s are also a little lighter, but I've tried them out in the store and their shape isn't as easy to hold and their eye relief with my glasses is problematic.  Also, at $1650 (B&H) plus another $175 for an extended warranty (I view them as an expensive piece of consumer electronics), the Canons are virtually the same cost as the discounted 10x56s.  The Canon 50mm models don't have much appeal to me because of the narrower FOV and eye relief issues.  They are not inexpensive either at $1200 and $1300 at B&H, plus the cost of a warranty.  I did look at the Zeiss 10x56, but they are even heavier than the Swaros and my goal here is handheld.

Well, after all that I can certainly hear the voice in my head trying to talk myself into keeping the 10x56s.  Does anyone have any other suggestions for alternatives in good quality 10x handheld binos that would provide comparable views?



#117 Erik Bakker

Erik Bakker

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Moderators
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 8,951
  • Joined: 10 Aug 2006
  • Loc: Netherlands, Europe

Posted 28 November 2018 - 01:41 PM

There are 2 superlative 10x56's on the face of our planet. One available new, the Swarovski SLC 10x56 WB you are evaluating at the moment. The other the NLA Zeiss Victory FL 10x56's. My advice: keep the SLC 10x56's for all the reasons you describe. The other points will likely melt away or gain perspective to make a better judgment on what you think of them. Even after a few years, they still retain most of their value. Optical and mechanically, they are built to enjoy for decades or more. No electronic IS binocular is.

 

One night of truly stunning darkness and transparency can probably do more to show you their strengths than anyone can ever tell you. Having had my FL 10x56's with me on those nights was a privilege. They always put on strikingly spectacular views. Especially as darkness falls and the stars come out. And so will your SLC 10x56's. At the price you paid, they are unbeatable IMO.


  • Stellarfire likes this

#118 tmichaelbanks

tmichaelbanks

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 306
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2017

Posted 28 November 2018 - 03:03 PM

Erik, thank you very much for your feedback and advice.

 

I have until late December to return them so I will make the most of any clear nights we have and will use them frequently.  The moon is coming out later during the next few weeks, which will help.  If the cloud cover disperses, it will be even better.   smirk.gif 



#119 dries1

dries1

    Ranger 4

  • -----
  • Posts: 383
  • Joined: 26 Oct 2017
  • Loc: Northwest Delaware

Posted 28 November 2018 - 07:09 PM

TMB,

 

They are other 10X50s to consider, however they have a 50mm aperture not 56, so there will be some some light loss and these are the EL SV 10X50 ( more expensive than the SLC)  and the Leica UV HD+ 10X50 (retail is about the same as the SLC - there are deals out there for less.

 

Both are lighter than the SLC at about 1000 grams each, have FOVs of ~ 6.6 degrees and under a dark sky they provide magnificent views, however under more hazy skys and high altitude clouds or outside light (such as a bright moon), the Zeiss FL10X56 will show more of the night sky, hands down. 

 

So there are trade offs as you can see. I am only familiar with the Leica UV HD+, Swarovski EL SV 10X50s and the Zeiss FL10X56, with very limited time viewing with the SLC 10X56 during the day, and I have never viewed the Zeiss HT 10X54.

 

The SLC is a very good glass, good luck with your decision.

 

Andy W.


  • Erik Bakker likes this

#120 Rob Moore

Rob Moore

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 20
  • Joined: 04 Nov 2016

Posted 28 November 2018 - 08:26 PM

I just picked up a pair of Fujinon 10x50 FMTR-SX binoculars and I am really impressed with the performance on the night sky. I have the Swarovski 8x56 slc and plan to do some comparisons when it clears off. The 10x50 fujinon is nothing like the 10x70 and 16x70 I had. The 10x50 is a lot better at controlling CA and the daytime view is very good. I am curious to see how it performs against a Swarovski
  • Erik Bakker and Mike Allen like this

#121 tmichaelbanks

tmichaelbanks

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 306
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2017

Posted 29 November 2018 - 05:29 PM

Andy, thank you for the feedback on the 10x50s.  The 10x50 ELs were a very close second in my research, but with my asymmetric eyeglasses prescription and significant astigmatism I have to wear glasses while observing and I was concerned about having enough eye relief.  And even with the SLC's copious ER I can still manage to get blackouts in my right eye.  If I twist the eyecups up to the third position the blackouts are gone but the FOV is reduced.

 

I was out for 45 minutes last night dodging some clouds, but with no moon out views through the clear areas had that "Ooo... and Ahh..." factor, really pleasing.

 

Rob, I will be interested to hear your thoughts on how your SLC 8x56 compares with your new Fujinon 10x50s.  Do you use the 8x56 primarily for stargazing?



#122 Rob Moore

Rob Moore

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 20
  • Joined: 04 Nov 2016

Posted 29 November 2018 - 07:02 PM

I use the 8x56 for both daytime bird watching and I put them on a tripod for astronomy. They are fine hand held but I just like the comfort of using a tripod and comparing the faintest stars visible in rich open clusters. I am sure the 10x50 fujinon will probably go a little deeper just because it is a 10x and it has excellent coatings and contrast. At a really dark site the 8x56 would probably do better. It’s been a long time since I have seen a really dark sky. I need to plan a trip and do that.
  • Erik Bakker likes this

#123 dries1

dries1

    Ranger 4

  • -----
  • Posts: 383
  • Joined: 26 Oct 2017
  • Loc: Northwest Delaware

Posted 29 November 2018 - 08:44 PM

TMB,

 

I think you made an excellent choice of a 10X56 instrument for the night sky, likely the best made today. Enjoy the views. 

 

Andy W.


Edited by dries1, 29 November 2018 - 08:45 PM.

  • Erik Bakker likes this

#124 hakann

hakann

    Vanguard

  • -----
  • Posts: 2,170
  • Joined: 06 Aug 2015

Posted 30 November 2018 - 03:40 PM

Thanks Erik for sharing.
I’m not suprice the 16X win ( your way see it )

I had no issue on the old model, as big dia, compact, good for astro vs price.

Do you think Swarro will do a EL at over 50 mm ?
I like then narrow but I know if, they will be max 15X etc.

#125 Erik Bakker

Erik Bakker

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Moderators
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 8,951
  • Joined: 10 Aug 2006
  • Loc: Netherlands, Europe

Posted 01 December 2018 - 05:32 AM

Hakann, I don't think Swaro will do an EL over 50mm. The SLC56 are their horse in that race. But they may come out with zoom binoculars somewhere in the future scratchhead2.gif




CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics