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Ideal big bore binoculars.

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#1 craig_oz_land

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 05:22 AM

Follwoing on from kool kenny's thread on "Current "Top Five" Bino Wish -List - £1000 limit." I thought I would bank all the money and go for a single big bino purchase.

That would be an ideal theoretical best bino. It must be good for both terestrial and astronomy.

Hope I am not breaking the rules. So my ideal would be,

* 150mm objectives or there abouts APO calcium flourite ~F5.
* Sliding lens shade dew shields.
* 90 degreee and 45 degree options
* Flatfield
* Removable eyepieces 1.25" a must.
* Solid construction like Nikon or Fujis.
* Winged eyecups.

Can I get all that for £5000.

BTW Kenny, where did you get than funny symbol in front of the 5000. I can't find it on my keyboard. :confused:

Cheers, Craig.


#2 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 06:12 AM

I don't think you can get a pair of 150mm APO objectives for £5000, let alone a complete binoscope setup.

If you'd settle for achromat, the Matsumoto Schwartz-150 comes pretty close to those requirements. It's achromatic, not apo, but "only" costs about £2700 (540,000 JPY). Another option is the JMI RB66 but this one is not suitable for terrestrial use.

#3 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 07:52 AM

I don't think you can get that either AND the tripod/head to support it for under £5000. But let's pretend you could...man...that would be a sweet setup!

#4 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 08:15 AM

The 540,000 JPY price I quoted for the Schwartz-150 includes a Vixen HF alt-az mount. I'm pretty sure the $3000 price tag for the JMI RB66 includes a mount as well.

#5 wilash

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 08:29 AM

What do you mean by "terrestrial" use. 150mm binos simply cannot be used for birdwatching for example. I have used 20X80 for birdwatching, but only water fowl. I could not imagine using them for woodland birds - you could not focus them fast enough and the field of view is too narrow. I would not want to try to carry 150mm binos and the huge support in the field.

150mm binos are great for mounting on a battleship or on the Eiffle tower for the tourists, but what else? They are great for astronomy, no question. But extremely limited in terrestrial use.

As far as construction. I would like the manufacturers update their line with newer materials. Most high-end binos are too heavy - weight has nothing to do with quality. I wish there was more use of carbon fiber and magnisium alloys. I think the move to polycarbonate construction (read: plastic) for the housing is good.

#6 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 08:39 AM

I hear Fujinon and Nikon giant binocs were originally developed for terrestrial and nautical use, and still used in those fields. Mostly commercial fishing boats, but also surveillance and inspection of large-scale structures (e.g. high tension power lines). That's why they are straight-through and built like a tank.

#7 wilash

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 09:09 AM

I'm sure there are technical and commercial uses for the binoculars. But I find power-line inspection not a very attractive hobby even with all the birds that perch on them in my neighborhood. As far as nautical use, you need to mount them on a BIG ship or you are going to get a little sea sick.

As far as private ownership, there are no real terrestrial applications in any general sense. Their benefit would be for astronomical observing. But Craig specified their terrestrial value. To me it would just limit the design from its only practical use - astronomy.

As far as construction, I think weight should be reduced to a minimum. Those Fuji binos are heavy to move. And heavy does not mean strong nor durable.

I wish there was a move to limit the weight of astronomy equipment as a whole. EQ mounts spring to mind. I think there is a lot of wasted mass. Also the weight of OTAs could be reduced significantly. I guess this weight reduction fetish comes from my mountain climbing background. It is amazing how much weight you can eliminate from your load if you watch the ounces.

#8 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 11:17 AM

I would want the same, except that it should be F/2 and accept 2" eyepieces.

#9 craig_oz_land

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 09:59 PM

Thanks guys for you opinions.

Terrestrial use means for looking over land. I have the benefit of living on a hill over looking the ocean and city. I enjoy long distance veiwing over land and sea when the best atmospheric conditions occur in winter. I suppose it can be likend to amateur radio contests for the longest contact achieved on a certain frequency band.

The portability issue was not considered as these would be the ideal big bore binos. That would be the best mid size for astronomy such as the Miyauchi 77s and Kowas etc.

To me it seems a grea shame that some of these bigger binos like the Fujis have not been adapted for astronomy ie. 45 and 90 degree with standardised 1.25" eyepieces.

I really do like the Kowa Highlander Prominar and they do have changeable eyepieces but not a standardised size. Markus Ludes gave them a very favourable review on SAA a while back. They have 82 mm objectives.

Regards, Craig.

#10 KennyJ

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 12:43 PM

Wilash wrote :

< 150mm binos are great for mounting on a battleship or on the Eiffle tower for the tourists, but what else? They are great for astronomy, no question. But extremely limited in terrestrial use >

I know I'm an exception , but I have probably spent about fifty times more time over the past forty years looking at LONG distance terrestrial views through binoculars and scopes than I have looking at stars and birds put together.

I have come to the conclusion that I have never used an instrument that is really up to the job , and was rather hoping that something like Craig's suggested 150mm APO binoculars would be the ONLY instrument capable of providing what I have long considered to be my personal "holy grail".

I realise that mirage is a huge problem most of the time for my kind of viewing , but when it isn't -- WOW -- what pleasure I derive from looking at distant mountain ranges and landmarks brought 7x 10x 15x 20x 25x 33x 40x 50x 66x through to 100x closer.

I tend to drive to high vantage points then just get out my scopes and binoculars or just use window mounts ( although I'm eagerly looking forward to using my new Manfrotto tripod and head for this activity.

I was quite surprised to learn only last week over on the astromart forum that according to others , the "average" magnification used by birders in the US is above 35x.

I got a bit shot -down with that one -- I honestly thought that powers over around 25x were actually rarely used.

Of course the major difference there is that I imagine birders seldom look at birds more than about half a mile away.

There is a MASSIVE difference between looking at something half a mile away and at something 40 miles away.

This is where I think the extra resolution of extra -large objectives could really come into their own.

Even 20mm binoculars do NOT work as well as 42mm binoculars at the same magnification over extremely long distances , and I don't need a degree in physics or anything else to know this -- I trust my eyes .

I concede that sheer bulk and weight would be a big problem with something so large as 150mm binos , but even that is not insuperable.

Of course weight is more of a problem than actual size and I agree that more could be made of the super lightweight materials used in the aerospace industry for example.

Of course there are situations when any anti -social aspects may need to be observed to.

A 150mm bino would likely bring some strange looks beachside or at the ballet :-)

Seriously though , I'd certainly like to try one for long range terrestrial use.

Regards -- Kenny.


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