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Kowa 10x50 SV II

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#1 1alecu

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 11:27 AM

I have used Nikon Aculon 8x42 for the past year. This is my first pair of binoculars. I enjoyed them a few times during star parties and other events. Not having other binoculars to compare, I was happy. :) Then one night a member from the local club showed me a Swarovski CL 8x30. Wow, what a difference in clarity. I was blown away; by the price too. 16x the price of my Aculon which I am not prepared to pay. So recently I got a pair of Kowa 10x50 SV II. Last night I looked at the moon and I saw a lot of CA. Nikon had vary little CA in comparison. But most important to me was that I didn't like them. I guess because FOV is small. After using them for about 10min I could feel my eyes very tired. I never experienced this with my Nikons. They almost gave me a headache.

 

So my question is: is there something I need/could change to make the viewing more pleasurable? 

As an alternative, what options do I have for the same price in 10x50? I checked (on paper) Nikon Monarch 7 10x42 but they are outside my price range and they are not 50mm.

 

I am open to any suggestions.

 

Thanks,

Alex

 



#2 DrJ1

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 11:49 AM

The binoculars may not be collimated.  The Nikon Action Extreme 10x50 porroprisms for ~$170 are worth checking out.  I have the Nikon AE 12x50 porros and enjoyed moon watching last night using them. DrJ1


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#3 DeanD

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 09:32 PM

I agree that they may not be collimated. When you look though them initially do you see a slight double image before the images come together? If they are a bit out of collimation horizontally your brain will compensate by bringing the double images together, but it can be tiring after a while. (If they are out vertically the brain can't compensate.) It would be worth checking with your dealer if this is the case.

 

If you want a wider FOV in a 10x50, then Nikon Aculons have a 6 degree field (as opposed to the 5 degrees of the Kowa's), and the Action EX are 6.5 degrees.

 

A couple of other 10x50 options are the Oberwerk deluxe (https://oberwerk.com...10x50mm-deluxe/ ) or Ultra (https://oberwerk.com/product/oberwerk-ultra-series-10x50mm/), both with a 6.5 degree fov. I understand hat Oberwerk check their product for collimation before they sell them to you, and I hear that their service is excellent. Note that the Ultras have individual focus eyepieces, and are less suitable for daytime viewing when you might want to change the focus in a hurry. They are excellent for clarity in astronomy use though: in fact they are almost up to the Fujinon's in quality of view, but at 1/3 of the price  (eg: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/456966-USA/Fujinon_7105008_10x50_FMTR_SX_Polaris_Binocular.html).

 

However, I am not sure that a 10x50 bino will offer you much of an improvement over your 8x42's, especially if you are observing from an urban sky. Very similar exit pupil, and not that much difference in magnification. Also, 10x is harder to hold steady for an extended period than 8x, and they would benefit from attaching to a tripod or monopod for extended observing. If it is "clarity" you are after, having looked through a pair of "alpha" binos, then unfortunately you tend to get what you pay for...

 

If you want a nice jump in viewing for astronomy, what about checking out the 15x70 size? eg: https://oberwerk.com...15x70mm-deluxe/ - and still cheaper than the Kowa's. You will need to use a tripod for these though. They wont have the wide fov of the 8x42's, but they are much better for DSO's.

 

All the best,

 

Dean


Edited by DeanD, 02 July 2020 - 09:34 PM.


#4 DrJ1

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Posted 07 July 2020 - 07:03 PM

Dean:  Have you compared the Oberwerk Ultra 10x50 to the Fujinon 10x50 FMTR Polaris?  I love my 1988 vintage B&L Discoverer 10x50 but could be talked into a higher end 10x50.  The problem is I can't find a store that has Oberwerks and/or Fujinon Polaris on display.  After COVID 19 subsides, I may go to Company 7 in Maryland to see what they have in stock.  For expensive, high end optics, I like seeing the actual pair I'll be buying.  Thanks, DrJ1.



#5 edwincjones

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 08:13 AM

.............. After COVID 19 subsides, I may go to Company 7 in Maryland to see what .......

 

wait  question.gif

 

with reviews of CN posts we are probably 90% sure of what we want

getting now gives us 6 months  more time using them (maybe a lot more time)

if we catch Covid we may never have the opportunity

dealers could sure use the sales now, and may not be there afterwards 

 

edj



#6 DeanD

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Posted 12 July 2020 - 08:39 PM

Dean:  Have you compared the Oberwerk Ultra 10x50 to the Fujinon 10x50 FMTR Polaris?  I love my 1988 vintage B&L Discoverer 10x50 but could be talked into a higher end 10x50.  The problem is I can't find a store that has Oberwerks and/or Fujinon Polaris on display.  After COVID 19 subsides, I may go to Company 7 in Maryland to see what they have in stock.  For expensive, high end optics, I like seeing the actual pair I'll be buying.  Thanks, DrJ1.

Unfortunately I haven't had the opportunity to compare these. I once did a brief comparison of the Fuji 16x70 with my Resolux 15x70 (BA8 series: same as the Oberwerk Ultra's), and found very little difference. The BA8 series that I have seen are very good binoculars, especially for the price (I have also used their 7x50's).

 

I agree that is it important to try before you buy! I don't think you can wrong with either the Fuji's or the BA8's, but I am not sure how much "better" they would be compared to your B&L's. They would both have higher transmission, and probably better contrast due to their more modern coatings and glass. I think you would really need to view them though to see if they were any sharper, or if they have bigger sweet spots. (As an aside, I have an old pair of Carton 11x80's. They give great views with a fabulous 3D effect and they have a huge sweet spot: almost to the edge, but their "old" coatings mean they have lower transmission (I would suspect around 70-75%) and are not as bright as more modern, and even smaller binos with 85% and even up to 95% transmission.)

 

Have fun looking!

 

- Dean


Edited by DeanD, 12 July 2020 - 08:41 PM.



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