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Eyepieces fog up quickly with the Swarovski NL Pure !?

Binoculars Eyepieces
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#1 Binofriend

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Posted 13 July 2021 - 08:03 PM

Hello,
I received the NL Pure 8x42 at the end of December. Excited about the huge field of view, I was even more surprised by the increased image sharpness, immediately at the first view out of the kitchen on a piece of tree. With that, the decision was made: I'm buying these binoculars. I have good comparison, 10 binoculars from Leica, Zeiss, Optolyth and the El Swarovision 8.5x42 and 10x50.

I came only in January to take the NL outside at about 3°Celsius. But after looking through the bino for about 45 seconds, the eyepieces started to fog up until I had only mist in front of my eyes. This was a completely new experience for me in the last 25 years.

Explained physically, condensation occurs when my body heat radiates onto the cooled eyepieces. But that's why these lenses are coated with a moisture repellent coating. At Zeiss this is called "Lotu-tec" at Swarovski "Swaroclean", etc..

That's why I made a comparison: I took the new NL and my El 10x50 outdoors a few days later under similar external conditions, temperatures below 4°C. While the process described above repeated itself with the NL, I could look with the EL for 5 minutes continuously without any condensation. I also compared with my other binos several times with the same result. Another experiment is significant: I wetted the eyepieces of the NL and the EL with water and then shook off the water as much as possible. When I then looked for moisture residues, there were water beads on the EL and water puddles on the NL. This is a significance and not a one-time coincidence.

At first I assumed a defect in the coating of my NL until I found some posts on BirdForum that matched my findings. So a serial error??

Therefore my question to you: Has anyone found something like this? Of course with the eyepiece sleeves turned out. When used with glasses, the condensation can not occur because the lenses are hardly irradiated with heat and the air can circulate. I am very grateful for feedback you!!!

Binofriend   

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)


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#2 ECP M42

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Posted 13 July 2021 - 08:43 PM

From an early age, I had been taught that before putting on my diving mask, I had to spit in it and spread the entire inner surface of the glass well and then rinse in the sea.

 

Now, this method might work with binoculars too, but I've never tried it. However, I have noticed that if I clean the lenses with my breath (as a last pass), they tend to mist up less (nothing scientific, just a habit).

 

Maybe your binoculars are just new and need an initial cleaning of the glass. I don't know for sure, but try cleaning them.



#3 dries1

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Posted 13 July 2021 - 08:53 PM

I have the NL 8X42 and I do not wear glasses. I use them with the eyecups three stages out from them being flush with the ocular lens. I have never had this issue you are referring. In my case during use, there is an existing air gap partially surrounding the eye cups which allows air to circulate between the lens and my eyes. Additionally, I am not in 3 degrees Celsius either. 


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#4 Pinac

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Posted 14 July 2021 - 02:39 PM

Hi Binofriend,

 

no more fogging with my 3 NLs (8x42, 10x42, 8x32) than with any other of my binos.

 

Pinac


Edited by Pinac, 14 July 2021 - 02:39 PM.


#5 Full Sun

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Posted 14 July 2021 - 02:53 PM

No, with and without glasses the 8x’s has never fogged in nine months of regular use, cold weather or warm.

( However each time I put on my Covid face covering I am at about 100% condensation rate on my eye glasses (“).


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#6 Binofriend

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Posted 18 July 2021 - 07:05 PM

Thanks to all my readers, there is an additional explanation

 

I know from reliable sources that the "SwaroClean coating" still used on EL's has been discontinued on NL's for environmental reasons. It is about avoiding the non-degradable heavy metal lead (in connection with SwaroClean!!), which remains in the liver at the end of the food chain in humans.

I do not know if Swarovski has found an adequate and unproblematic substitute for the SwaroClean coating in the NL.
the SwaroClean coating.

After searching forums, it seems to me that the issue with eyepiece lenses fogging up quickly is not an exotic occurrence with the NL.

Now I also found posts where users of these binoculars describe that they did not notice eyepiece fogging in either cold or hot weather. A professional weather expert
confirmed to me that there are always zones in the world where the humidity is so low that even at low temperatures rapid condensation on the eyepieces can hardly occur.

I do not live in such a favorable place. Therefore I simply thought: Then the NL is probably only a binocular suitable for summer in my environment. But I was wrong. About a week ago, I was on an observation tour on a rather warm summer day. The highest temperature was 27°C. Around 21:30 (CEST) the temperature dropped to 16°C and both eyepieces fogged up after about 45 sec. of continuous observation.

No miracle with such a rapid temperature decrease, one could say. No!: There are moisture repellent coatings according to the principle of the lotus flower especially for such situations. Why does my EL 10x50 stay fog-free in such a situation?!!! And that for a decade and just as with my other binoculars. (e.g. ZeissVictory SF 8x42 , Leica 10x50 Ultravid HD....I have repeatedly conducted tests using both Swarovski NL 8x42 and EL 10x50 binoculars under the same conditions, with the result that the NL was the only one to fog up.

Still, I like the NL 8x42 a lot. It provides an exceptionally sharp and bright highly aesthetic image. And there is one helpful measure: you have to keep the eyepieces cold. Because only when the body's own heat radiation hits the lenses of the NL, condensation occurs. 1st: Turn the eyepiece sleeves to the third click. 2nd: Place sleeves only at the top of the eyebrows, so that cool air can enter the sleeve chamber well from below.

One last thing: A pair of binoculars costing 2850 Euros should probably be very good in all respects and equally unproblematic. But failure is human and fortunately can often be fixed. If Swarovski were to issue a recall, and optimize the coating on the eyepieces, we are all called upon to honor that behavior and not think, never mind, we'll never buy anything from them again.

Binofriend

P.S: I ask to spread my statement


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#7 aznuge

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Posted 19 July 2021 - 02:43 PM

Binofriend - thanks for the information.  Environmental improvements in raw materials for manufacturing sometimes come with compromises in the end products.  I am a career veteran of the semiconductor industry and have seen these environmental improvement cycles up close (i.e. for TCE, TCA, HF, lead, arsenic, antimony, chromium trioxide, etc).  Perhaps lead and arsenic free optical glass and coatings have their downsides. I read somewhere that CA may be a compromise for As-free glass.  A thorough study of these compromises by vendor, model, and eco benefit would be beneficial in my opinion.

 

Now, seeing that you are in possession of hazardous material (EL 10x50 binoculars), I would like to do my my part and offer to dispose of them for you.  I will even show up in a hazmat suit if you like... lol.giflol.gif

 

Seriously - good luck with the NL condensation issue.  If it can't be solved you'll have to move in the direction of replacing them and I would be curious where that takes you.

 

nuge


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#8 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 19 July 2021 - 02:54 PM

Just something I have pondered about

 

I have wondered why binocular eyepieces fog up more easily than telescope eyepieces for similar amount of eye relief.  My hypothesis is this:

 

At night, you are normally looking down into a telescope eyepiece and up into a binocular eyepiece.  Your eye is constantly giving off water vapor as well as heating the air.  Water vapor is lighter than air and when it mixes with the warm air it rises and contacts the binocular's ncool eye lens and condenses.  

 

Jon


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#9 j.gardavsky

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Posted 19 July 2021 - 03:40 PM

Unless Swarovski will help you,

you won't come around using the fog eliminator wipes.

 

Sorry for no better news,

JG



#10 Binofriend

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Posted 19 July 2021 - 04:55 PM

Thank you very much for all your answers, wishes and recommendations. It's just good to have an interpersonal sympathetic exchange, no matter what it's about. An addition of irony, fun (thanks nuge) loosens up ,it relaxes!
 
I stay hard on the subject though, I don't care though. It's a kind of investigation with personal stake for all of us. There is almost something criminalistic about it.

 

I will post significant developments here. I'm also already getting that there needs to be clarification and damage control for Distributors. These want to be able to recommend nevertheless from free mind their articles to their customers without reservation.

 

All the best your Binofriend


Edited by Binofriend, 19 July 2021 - 05:00 PM.

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#11 ihf

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Posted 19 July 2021 - 06:06 PM

And there is one helpful measure: you have to keep the eyepieces cold. Because only when the body's own heat radiation hits the lenses of the NL, condensation occurs.

Just to clarify, I assume this is a typo? To avoid condensation aren't you supposed to keep the eyepieces warm (not cold)? Moist warm air condenses when it hits cold eyepieces, as your second sentence correctly states. Can you keep the binos warm close to your body? Maybe add electric glove warmers to your case?


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#12 jprideaux

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Posted 19 July 2021 - 10:45 PM

Where I live it is hot and humid. If I take my binoculars (any brand) from the cool air conditioned house outside and try to use them right-away, they fog up. If I delay using them (while they are outside) for perhaps 15 minutes, they are fine. So that is my one trick - take them outside and lay them down somewhere to become the same temperature as the outside before using them.

If it is cold out and the humidity is coming from your own eyes, then perhaps warm up the eyepieces in some other way.
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#13 Mad Matt

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Posted 20 July 2021 - 06:25 AM

My tear glands are pretty active and I have this problem with almost all of my binoculars. I would suggest you use the optional forehead rest and then screw the eyecups in all the way. This allows air to circulate between your eyes and the glass. Also, try not to exhale which raising or lowering the binoculars to your eyes. You can inadvertently fog the eyepieces with your breath doing that.


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#14 gwd

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Posted 20 July 2021 - 07:10 AM

On very cold nights I lay out in a sleeping bag when hand held binocular viewing.  What I do is take two pair.  The one I'm not using stays warm inside the sleeping bag.  When one begins to fog  I switch.   I'll use the lower power to plan star hops for the higher power or to look at targets for the higher power.   The switching creates a rhythm driven by the temperature. 


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#15 Rich V.

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Posted 20 July 2021 - 10:06 AM

My Rocket Blaster air blower dispels eyepiece fog quickly on the cold nights here.  My humidity levels are nowhere near what some have to cope with, though.  Keeping the eyepieces warmed above the dew point sure helps, though.



#16 Binofriend

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Posted 21 July 2021 - 06:45 AM

Just to clarify, I assume this is a typo? To avoid condensation aren't you supposed to keep the eyepieces warm (not cold)? Moist warm air condenses when it hits cold eyepieces, as your second sentence correctly states. Can you keep the binos warm close to your body? Maybe add electric glove warmers to your case?

Here's the thing: the cold eyepieces fog up when warm air hits. If I turn the sleeves in so far that a gap opens from below, so much cold air can penetrate that the heat radiation of my eyes no longer affects the lenses. In fact, I have successfully tested it several times.



#17 Rich V.

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Posted 21 July 2021 - 09:18 AM

Sure, more access to air circulation any way you can get it helps prevent dewing.  That could be any air movement, warm or cold, IME.  It's not the "heat radiation" from the eyes that fogs the lens; it's just the humidity from eyes or breath condensing on a cooler lens.  Just fanning air onto the eye lens with my hand helps dispel the dew if I don't have a blower bulb.  On really bad nights, I've kept a hair dryer handy for a blast of warmed air.

 

Rich




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