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The Swarovski CL Pocket 8x25 and Zeiss Terra ED Pocket 8x25, a review

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267 replies to this topic

#26 Erik Bakker

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Posted 08 March 2016 - 12:30 PM

Is the Swaro in direct competition with the Zeiss Victory line?  If that is true then why Zeiss built something much cheaper and better optically (assuming Victory is same quality with Swaro)  to compete with their more expensive line? 

 

A person from Birdforum was saying about the Terra 8x25:" The sample I tried wasn't sharp, the colours were dull and the sweetspot small. I asked the lady from Zeiss if they were all that bad and she just smiled and shrugged her shoulders so I presume the answer was yes so I moved on." 

 

I really don't understand Zeiss strategy here???

 

 

This report seems questionable to me.

 

After the first Terra 8x25, which was stunning,  I tried 3 more over a period of a few weeks. All were fantastic. 



#27 Pinac

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Posted 08 March 2016 - 12:45 PM

I agree with Erik on this.

I talk a lot to optics and photo shop dealers, and the only complaints that were reported to me were about the stiffness of the focussing wheel, optically the Terra is praised by everybody I know (inlcuding myself, the one I own is certainly very good).

Pinac


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#28 drt3d

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Posted 08 March 2016 - 12:51 PM

I think we need someone who has tested both to give us a second opinion :)
 

George



#29 Pinac

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Posted 09 March 2016 - 01:37 AM

I think we need someone who has tested both to give us a second opinion :)
 

George

 

You mean a third opinion (Erik and I had already tested both) ?  ;)



#30 NDfarmer

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Posted 09 March 2016 - 07:00 PM

Erik:

 

You have posted a very nice review and I have enjoyed reading it.

 

I do have some questions.  I have experience with pocket types from

Nikon and Leica, and my issue is eye relief.

 

I have tried out the Swaro. 8x25 CL in a store setting, and it does lack

the comfort I like.  I don't wear eyeglasses, and I don't like having to hold

a binocular away from my face, rather I like to hold it still in my eye sockets.

 

Do you think the Zeiss would be any better?  I have not found them yet

in a shop.



#31 Erik Bakker

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Posted 09 March 2016 - 07:06 PM

All I can say is try them for yourself and see how they fit your eyes.



#32 drt3d

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Posted 09 March 2016 - 09:10 PM

"I don't wear eyeglasses, and I don't like having to hold a binocular away from my face, rather I like to hold it still in my eye sockets."

 

Why is that a problem with the Swarovski? I don't wear glasses either and with the eye-cups extended out the binoculars sit comfortably in my eye sockets.

 

George



#33 Erik Bakker

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Posted 10 March 2016 - 05:13 AM

I think the Swaro's are fine for most people with respect to eye relief and fitting their facial anatomy.



#34 CESDewar

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Posted 17 March 2016 - 11:17 PM

Erik: thanks for your review and based on it I ordered the Zeiss Terra's and they arrived yesterday.

I have bought dozens of binoculars over the past couple of decades and usually they perform pretty close to my expectations, but every now and then a pair surprises me, and this is one of those times.

Maybe I lucked out with an unusually good pair, but I was taken aback at both the center acuity and lack of edge falloff. Sirius focused down to a really tight point and there were only minor aberrations as it moved to the extreme edge of the field. The edge performance is about as good as any pair of binoculars I have ever looked through (and that includes Swaros and Leicas).

I also liked the large range of diopter adjustment. I wear contacts with my left eye set for reading and my right eye set for distance,. It works well for me, except most binoculars can not accommodate the disparity. The Terra's had no difficulty at all adjusting to that difference.

These will definitely become my favored day-carry binoculars.
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#35 Erik Bakker

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 03:05 AM

Glad you got a pair that exceeded your expectations. Hopefully Zeiss will continue to make as good as yours and mine!



#36 Mark9473

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 03:32 AM

I have to stop reading this thread or it's going to cost me money.


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#37 Alan French

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 09:17 AM

All I can say is try them for yourself and see how they fit your eyes.

 

Erik,

 

First, thanks for your very comprehensive review. Second, I couldn't agree more with your recommendation to "try them for yourself." Over the years I've learned that the fit and feel of binoculars is a very personal thing, and a model highly recommended, even by lots of peoples, sometimes just did not work in my hands.

 

On another note, I've tried a variety of compact binoculars. For me, I find the light weight works against holding them steady and will probably abstain from getting a compact pair. Something to pair attention to when trying them out.

 

Clear skies, Alan



#38 Erik Bakker

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 12:53 PM

So true Alan, tiny compacts tend to be shaky. Small 8x20's generally suffer from this.

 

The bigger Zeiss 8x25's are substantial enough in my hands not to suffer from this. I find them a delight to hold (still)  :D

 

The Swaro 8x25's, while smaller, are still OK, but not quite as nice in my hands as the Zeiss 8x25's.



#39 Alan French

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 01:58 PM

Alas, even the 8x25s suffer from this in my hands. I think it's an aging thing. Too bad - they are really nice.

 

Clear skies, Alan



#40 samovu

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 04:43 PM

I have to stop reading this thread or it's going to cost me money.

 

This thread?

 

After getting maybe one more pair, I need to stop coming to the binocular section. And the refractor section too ;)

 

Cheers,

John



#41 hakann

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 05:14 PM

Great readings.

 

I has a Zeiss 60mm IS at 1.6 kg but nothing for walkings out or to be used on trekk.

First they has 20X and they are very expensive. I prefer to take care of them nicly and I also use them on a tripod time to time but bought them as 60 mm and IS ( hand hold )

 

I plan a smaller bino to be used whit my scope, to be used out walkking, trekk etc.

I want quality and I want roof style here and not made in China.

I plan a trip to Peru at christmas.

For astronomy a 42 mm might be the minium, and the Swarro EL is not that big to carry.

But how do the Swarro EL 32 mm stand up for astronomy and the Zeiss 25 mm pockets ?

Or would I miss the astro up there if I get this pair as they are only 600 US and Little over 1300 grams ( ok a parro style, and they might be more sensitive )

 

I miss a small bino to be used everywhere and daylight use but also I like to see astronmy as piority 1, and not be needed to sorrow if they got hurt or stolen etc )

 

I will soon go to Morocco for stargaze in April and bring the Zeiss of course, even if the astro hotell has binos and telescopes, but use them and carry them is protect them whit life..

 

Any ideas.

 

http://www.company7..../1050fmtsx.html



#42 jimb1001

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 05:57 PM

Bushnell compact elite.



#43 Erik Bakker

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 06:25 PM

The Swaro 32 EL are fantastic, but also much bigger than their 25mm cousins. Definitely not pocketable. 



#44 hakann

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 06:42 PM

How is astro in Bushnell or Zeiss, Swarro 25 mm ? I heard astro starts really at 42 mm.
Ok out on trekk hard to bring a 50 mm, so you get what you can bring.

#45 Erik Bakker

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 06:51 PM

25mm? Very sharp and contrasty, but on the dim side. I can easily see M33, M51 or M81 and M82 with my Zeiss 8x25 though.



#46 hakann

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Posted 19 March 2016 - 11:22 PM

Wow, I never seen any of this objects here in Sweden whit my Zeiss 60 mm at 20X !
Ok, now weather has been really bad all winter.
I saw M33 ( not much ) but I saw it at La Palma in December. It was not perfect there but some nights ok at 2400 meter.
But on high altitude trekk the 25 mm might give me more than the 60 mm here !
I'll must test this Zeiss 25 mm.

Question. I note Zeiss also do the Victory series.
How is those vs the Terras ?
Image, ergonomy etc.
So in real nice sky a 25 mm will show some DSO's.
Next question is 8 or 10X.
If I go up to Machi Pichu or Tibet later on I'll just cant bring more bino aperature but high located.
Ok there is competition vs a Swarro EL at 32 mm wich I enjoy atleast lock in it at daylight, I was impressed.
So 25 or 32 over my ideas for out walking or high altitude trekk vs astronomy.

On 8 vs 10X, example the 3 stars in Orion, diffirance between the mags ?
Guess both bring them in, or ?

Edited by hakann, 20 March 2016 - 01:39 AM.


#47 Pinac

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Posted 20 March 2016 - 02:57 AM

I don't want to spoil anything for anybody, but:

 

in my humble opinion, 8x25 is a compromise which you accept if for some reason you cannot use a 8x30 or bigger.

8x25 is quite usable, esp. a good one like the Swaro or Terra, but it's much less versatile than a good 8x30 with its larger EP in many situations.

 

8x20 is for me merely an "optical emergency kit": it's better than nothing if you carry no other bino, but it's use is hampered by many disadvantages: small EP, to light to hold steady, not easy to find good position before your eyes, narrow FOV, etc. etc. The same is true for 10x25, and even a very good model like the Victory from Zeiss does not change that.

 

If you can take an E II or a Habicht or - less expensive - a Monarch 7 8x30 with you, some of which are not much bigger or heavier than the 8x25, I would certainly do that.

 

Now before I get ripped apart by angry 8x20 and 8x25 enthusiasts: the above is just  m y   h u m b l e  o p i n i o n.

:)


Edited by Pinac, 20 March 2016 - 02:58 AM.

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#48 Mark9473

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Posted 20 March 2016 - 05:49 AM

So in real nice sky a 25 mm will show some DSO's.
Next question is 8 or 10X.
If I go up to Machi Pichu or Tibet later on I'll just cant bring more bino aperature but high located.
Ok there is competition vs a Swarro EL at 32 mm wich I enjoy atleast lock in it at daylight, I was impressed.
So 25 or 32 over my ideas for out walking or high altitude trekk vs astronomy.
 

 

Your trip may well require a very compact pair like a 8x25, but in general something with a larger exit pupil, like an 8x42 would be very much superior in the kind of view you can get from them. Your 20x60 also have only a 3 mm exit pupil. I think you're overdue for a 5+ mm exit pupil.



#49 Erik Bakker

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Posted 20 March 2016 - 08:16 AM

Like Pinac, I consider the 8x32-10x32 models to be the superior binoculars compared to their 25mm counterparts IF you can pack them for your trip. The 25mm binoculars are quite a bit smaller than either 30, 32 or 35mm binoculars. 8x or 10x? After a long walk, the 8x will be easier to hold steady. The 10x models tend to have slightly larger AFOV's. All in all, I would take the 8x for backpacking. With Swarovski, the step up from the 8x25 is the 8x32 EL, not the 8x30 CL. With Zeiss, you would have to go to the 32mm Victory FL models, not the 32mm Terra's.


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#50 hakann

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Posted 20 March 2016 - 11:03 AM

Erik, Mark and others.

 

Any idea if the Victory 25 mm model is a benefit from the Terra 25 mm ?

Victory is more expensive and its said from them the best 25 mm bino.

 

I would have to test the Zeiss Terra 25 mm vs the EL 32 mm.

It is really 2 types of bino this.

I know the 32 mm EL is a great bino especially for daylight. It has a 4 mm pupil, not a 5 that Mark was into.

I know ergo of the EL 32 mm is great, but my guess the folded 25 mm is a pocket size compromise, still idea is good and price is decent.

Price for the EL 32 mm is not something to snese at, but it is quality and a life time bino.

 

I think I can handle a 10X even after walkings, but its also vs object types.




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