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Where have all the Russian binoculars gone?.

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#1 Binojunky

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 10:40 AM

A few years back here in Ontario Canada dealers of astro gear and even some department stores were awash with Russian instruments, mainly Tento but a few other makes as well, all sizes were available , 7x35, 7x50,10x50, 20x60 even a rather nice roof prism almost identical to an older Leica, all at low prices with good optics and even decent mechanics, leather cases etc. Hardly anything to be seen today , Levenhuk are selling a few models called the Heritage, just wondering what has happened to the Russian stuff,things like Russian wristwatches still seem readily available, binos are scarce, Dave.


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#2 Astroman007

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 10:54 AM

And what happened to the Russian telescopes?


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#3 Terra Nova

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 10:56 AM

The Russian-made Levenhuk Heritage 12x42s and 15x50s look pretty sweet.

 

https://www.levenhuk...5/#.Xac9R4opChB

 

https://www.amazon.c...d/dp/B07GF8Q3N5


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#4 Astroman007

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 11:25 AM

The Russian-made Levenhuk Heritage 12x42s and 15x50s look pretty sweet.

 

https://www.levenhuk...5/#.Xac9R4opChB

 

https://www.amazon.c...d/dp/B07GF8Q3N5

Do they perform as good as they look?



#5 Rich V.

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 11:42 AM

http://komzbaigish.ru/catalog/20


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#6 Rich V.

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 11:47 AM

"And what happened to the Russian telescopes?"

 

LZOS still makes quality triplet apo scope objectives from 100mm through 510mm as sold by APM...

 

https://www.apm-tele..._id=61&sorting=


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#7 brentwood

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 11:50 AM

What are 'BK10' prisms? 



#8 Rich V.

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 12:09 PM

"What are 'BK10' prisms?"

 

KOMZ website above says BaK4 prisms.

 

N-BK10 is a Schott glass similar to N-BK7.  https://www.us.schot...1&wss_iso=en-US



#9 pat in los angeles basin

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 01:11 PM

Yet the "Heritage plus" russian levenhuk are touting "ruby coated" on the objectives It might actually be good, just that all the lower end stuff has the same coating and it's not so good.....hmmm

                                                                                                                                   Regards, Pat



#10 Giorgos

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 01:41 PM

The good old cheap "Made in USSR"  binoculars dissapeared gradually after the collapse of the USSR and the flooding of the market with cheap far east imports (especially from China). In a nutshell there aren't any good russian binoculars only good old soviet ones.


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#11 Yarddog

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 04:19 PM

My first Russian binocular was a $35 7x30. It is an interesting one. I would guess I got it around 1994. It has a range finding reticle, two strong amber colored eyepiece filters which store in compartments attached to the strap. It actually has a slight yellow cast as is. Also the individual eye pieces have a slight zooming effect which your brain totally ignores.

 

Despite all this it manages to be extremely sharp. It is not my best all around binocular but it just might be the sharpest in fact I think it is.


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#12 hallelujah

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 05:17 PM

There seems to be a selection of Russian/Soviet binoculars on eBay, for starters.

 

My favorite ones are the Tento Porro binoculars. like-button.jpg

 

Stan



#13 Terra Nova

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 06:27 PM

Do they perform as good as they look?

I have no idea? Five of my seven pair are vintage Japanese from the ‘60s up to 1995, one is American (B&L USN 7x50s of WWII era), and the ‘newest’ are my Oberwerk 12x60s Ultras with no country of origin specified that I purchased new in 2002 or 2003.


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#14 Binojunky

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 10:49 AM

Yet the "Heritage plus" russian levenhuk are touting "ruby coated" on the objectives It might actually be good, just that all the lower end stuff has the same coating and it's not so good.....hmmm

                                                                                                                                   Regards, Pat

I actually bought two pairs of the 12x45 Heritage plus for about $75 Canadian each,here we go, optics wise not that bad, not mind blowing either, a type of ruby coating is used on the objective lens, however night views do not seem to be overly affected, stars are sharp points, daytime views are good, also the right side has a range finding recticle, no instructions on how to use it though.

   The body is all metal and is rubber covered ,not sure if its water proof, probably not,focusing is a bit gritty but no slop, eye relief is poor , I take my glasses off. replaced the neck strap with something a bit wider, the case is fine, large pouch style, they are solid, all other adjustments are fine though the finish is typical Russian, looks like they are made from a  recycled Typhoon class nuclear submarine, need to check if they glow in the darkgrin.gif , conclusion?, well worth the price I paid but not the recommended asking price , Dave.



#15 Gyna

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 06:10 AM

I have a high regard for everything made by Komz before the URSS disgregation, they made great optics, maybe not great mechanics... In addition of their binos, a little gem is the spotting scope ZRT-460M, a 20x50mm with incredible sharpness. I have two, sometimes I wonder about making a binocular...

 

Marco


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#16 25585

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 08:47 AM

"Where have all the Russian binoculars gone?"

 

Ebay has them every one

Long time passing.

 

 


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#17 Terra Nova

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 10:25 AM

I bought a pair of Tento’s off of eBay a few years ago. They arrived out of collimation and the optics weren’t great and the coatings weird. I sent them back and got a full refund. I remember looking through some Russian 10x50s around 20 years ago that were really good and was expecting something like that. They weren’t. I’ve not looked for any more since then. I’ll stick with my old Japanese favorites.

 

However, I am a big fan of Oberwerk! I think you get excellent value and a quality product that they stand behind.


Edited by terraclarke, 20 October 2019 - 10:26 AM.

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#18 Corcaroli78

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 11:28 AM

A few years back here in Ontario Canada dealers of astro gear and even some department stores were awash with Russian instruments, mainly Tento but a few other makes as well, all sizes were available , 7x35, 7x50,10x50, 20x60 even a rather nice roof prism almost identical to an older Leica, all at low prices with good optics and even decent mechanics, leather cases etc. Hardly anything to be seen today , Levenhuk are selling a few models called the Heritage, just wondering what has happened to the Russian stuff,things like Russian wristwatches still seem readily available, binos are scarce, Dave.

Russian binos are widely available in this side of the pond, almost found in every pawn shop, fleamarket and house clearance sales.  I just spotted a wonderful Tento 7x35 which provides nice an comfortable wide field views as good as my Zeiss Deltrintems.  

 

Some are quite affordable while others, like the BPO 7x30 (with long eyepiece barrels) are around 150-200 usd. 

 

Today chinese vendors have cloned the russian 8x30 (cloned itself from the german ones) and that is why maybe the russian models can not compete against chinese prices (as well as other optical market segments).

 

Carlos



#19 Ant1

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 02:55 PM

Hi

 

Russian binoculars today?

Komz : still manufacturing the same bins as 30 years ago. Decent views but technology has not improved and prices have gone up while sales have gone down. Chinese counterfeits are plenty.

Zomz : advertises a few Porro models, interesting, but only wholesale and no one seems to sells them. They have been unavailable for more than 10 years now. Retailers seem more keen on chinese roofs.

Yukon : a few Porro models, some of them with good optics, but direct competitor of the Nikon Aculon which feature a better warranty and outstanding value for money.

In other words, in the 90's Russian bins were a fantastic bargain as they were providing good optics at incredibly low prices. Unfortunately they haven't evolved much since and can't compete technically nor economically with chinese optics. This is a shame as there was/is undoubtedly a lot of potential.

 

Regards,

Ant1


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#20 Prescott702

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 10:55 PM

Intes Micro is Russian but I think they never offer binos and now that the brand is gone they will never do 



#21 Corcaroli78

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 01:28 AM

Hi

 

Russian binoculars today?

Komz : still manufacturing the same bins as 30 years ago. Decent views but technology has not improved and prices have gone up while sales have gone down. Chinese counterfeits are plenty.

Zomz : advertises a few Porro models, interesting, but only wholesale and no one seems to sells them. They have been unavailable for more than 10 years now. Retailers seem more keen on chinese roofs.

Yukon : a few Porro models, some of them with good optics, but direct competitor of the Nikon Aculon which feature a better warranty and outstanding value for money.

In other words, in the 90's Russian bins were a fantastic bargain as they were providing good optics at incredibly low prices. Unfortunately they haven't evolved much since and can't compete technically nor economically with chinese optics. This is a shame as there was/is undoubtedly a lot of potential.

 

Regards,

Ant1

 

I own a small LZOZ 4x36 made probably in the early 90´s. Optical quality is remarkable, construction is simple but very solid. amazing instrument for wide field views and big exit pupil.  I have tried also the BPO which i think are still in production and its sharpness is among the best. the long extendable metal eyecups and reticle are a distinctive feature from its military origin. 

 

Russian binoculars provided consistent quality and were competing with japanese binos (of variable quality) in Europe. Still today, japanese vintage binos of high quality are hard to find, while a good TENTO (e.g. the 10x50 or 20x60) is availible almost at any time.

 

Carlos


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#22 j.gardavsky

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 08:32 AM

The LZOS are very sharp, what I have been missing is a better contrast.

I have had some of them in my hands, but never purchased a single one.

 

JG


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#23 Antonio R.G

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 03:04 AM

On Ebay these binoculars are still very abundant, but I think prices have risen. In Spain (my country) it is very easy to find them in second-hand stores and private sellers at very, very low prices. I bought some Zomz 7x50 in perfect condition for around € 30 and the Komz 8x30 is easily found for around € 20. I have also found Russian-made telescopes (with excellent optics) at a very low price here ...

#24 Corcaroli78

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 07:50 AM

On Ebay these binoculars are still very abundant, but I think prices have risen. In Spain (my country) it is very easy to find them in second-hand stores and private sellers at very, very low prices. I bought some Zomz 7x50 in perfect condition for around € 30 and the Komz 8x30 is easily found for around € 20. I have also found Russian-made telescopes (with excellent optics) at a very low price here ...

That is my experience too.

 

A couple of months ago, i found in a german pawn shop a very nice 12x40 russian binocular (i do not remember the brand) wonderful eye relief (which is key to me), comfortable, lightweight and just for 20 €, i can live with the yellow views. I returned for them one week ago and the price was increased to 45 €.

--

At the same time i was offered a nice russian monocular zoom  8x-30x x30 in good condition, but this was 60€ so i let it go. I took instead a Zeiss Jenoptem 8x30 completely new for 40€ from the same shop

 

Carlos.


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#25 25585

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 06:51 PM

If in good condition, their leather cases are worth buying the binoculars for. Ditto East German Jena & Jenoptem....  


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