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12x50 which one?

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#1 JorgeLima87

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Posted 26 October 2021 - 05:26 PM

Hello everyone,

 

I am in the market for a pair of 12x50 binos, I am not sure from these shell I go for.

 

Nikon Action EX 12 x 50 CF, Pentax SP 12X50 WP or APM ED APO 12 x 50. 

 

 

 

Thank you.

 

 



#2 drt3d

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Posted 26 October 2021 - 05:33 PM

APM

 

The price of the APM looks to be more than 2x of either of the other two. Maybe you get what you pay for? :)

 

George


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#3 Fiske

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Posted 26 October 2021 - 05:34 PM

APM 12X50 ED MS. wink.gif


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#4 chanrobi

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Posted 26 October 2021 - 06:17 PM

How about a IS bino? Canon makes the 15x50?



#5 sevenofnine

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Posted 26 October 2021 - 06:55 PM

Welcome to C/N! welcome.gif

 

The Nikon AE series get lots of recommendations on this forum for astronomy binoculars. For their price point of $184 (B&H Photo) they are hard to beat.watching.gif


Edited by sevenofnine, 26 October 2021 - 06:57 PM.

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#6 f18dad

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Posted 26 October 2021 - 08:58 PM

Nikon AE 12x50



#7 ECP M42

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 12:08 AM

I vote for APM ED ... if you use them for starry skies or long range observations.

In case you will also need them for local fauna at medium and short distances, it would be preferable that the binoculars have a central focuser.
And in this case you could also review the choices. 



#8 f18dad

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 06:56 AM

https://www.cloudyni...nikon-12x50-ae/

 

https://www.cloudyni...-families-r1714



#9 JorgeLima87

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 10:03 AM

Thank you everyone for your reply.

 

The APM are on sale at the moment. https://www.apm-tele...ries-binoculars

 

The Pentax I like the focus lock but maybe optically they are not as good as the nikon?

 

I own a celestron 15x70, will I see a big difference in image quality?

 

 

How about a IS bino? Canon makes the 15x50?

 

The price is much higher however the IS is a big advatange, or maybe wait if a new version to come out in the meantime. 



#10 Cestus

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 10:03 AM

I have the Vortex Diamondback HD 12x50 and am quite satisfied.



#11 garret

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 11:53 AM

How about a IS bino? Canon makes the 15x50?

The well-known reviewer Roger Vine has tested the Canon 12x36 IS mark III (including against an regular 12x50 binocular under the stars)
He is very impressed with the small Canon IS binocular.
Compared to the APM 12x50, this Canon is 350 euros more expensive.

http://www.scopeview...n12x36ISIII.htm


Edited by garret, 27 October 2021 - 11:54 AM.


#12 JorgeLima87

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 12:39 PM

The well-known reviewer Roger Vine has tested the Canon 12x36 IS mark III (including against an regular 12x50 binocular under the stars)
He is very impressed with the small Canon IS binocular.
Compared to the APM 12x50, this Canon is 350 euros more expensive.

http://www.scopeview...n12x36ISIII.htm

 

I had a look at the canon 12x36 IS III but having to keep on pressing the stabilisation button was a turn off for me. The 15x50 IS don´t have this issue. 



#13 ckwastro

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 01:49 PM

The Pentax I like the focus lock but maybe optically they are not as good as the nikon?

Haven’t used the Nikon AE or the APM, but I do have the 12x50 Pentax. I usually prefer a minimum 65* AFOV, and these are much narrower at 50*, but the optics are very good. I don’t notice any aberrations until about 90% out to the edge, and even the edge  is still minimal with any issues. Contrast is very good.

 

The focus lock is a nice feature. I wear glasses and there is plenty of eye relief for me. I tend to use these for the moon and more compact DSOs that don’t need a big field. Very good for those applications. 


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#14 Arcticpaddler

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 02:37 PM

I have the Nikon AE, but in 10x50.  Excellent binos with excellent optics.


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#15 Blue72

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 06:27 PM

You can get the refurbished Nikon action extremes for $130  from Nikon

 

https://www.nikonusa...:8ps:Binoculars


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#16 ECP M42

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 03:36 AM

1 - The Pentax I like the focus lock but maybe optically they are not as good as the nikon?

 

2 - I own a celestron 15x70, will I see a big difference in image quality?

1 - I have never tried any of these models, but from what I can understand from the reviews and what I can guess based on all my knowledge and experience, I believe that the optical quality of the Pentax is better than that of the Nikon AE (but lower to that of the APM).

The focus is internal which makes those binoculars more accurate with alignments and more waterproof. I don't remember reading how focus rotation works, but I think it's smoother than the AE system (which is pretty cheap). Pentaxes seem to me to be built well and to perform just as well and for a long time. Surely they belong to a more specific project, which prefers to use high resolution and brightness eyepieces, making the binoculars more suitable for celestial observation, at the same time allowing a wide eye relief for eyeglass wearers, but where the only negative point is the greater relative weight, compared to the narrow field of view they offer (50° AFOV). 

 

2 - I still have a Celestron SkyMaster 25x70 and have tried various other similar models (70mm), so I can confidently assume that the difference will be noticeable with each of the models you mentioned. And of course, more and more with the more expensive model.

But the 15x70 will get you to see more stars than any 12x50, on any occasion. So I don't know if it can be an adequate comparison reference for this choice. 

 

 

Can you tell us what tasks you will use your new 12x50 for? 

 

Henry


Edited by ECP M42, 28 October 2021 - 03:38 AM.


#17 JorgeLima87

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 04:41 AM

Can you tell us what tasks you will use your new 12x50 for? 

 

 

I am looking for something on the go with good quality optics to carry with me on trips to the countryside, mostly for stargazing.



#18 ECP M42

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 05:37 AM

as far as I can NOT understand from your constipated responses, you may be traveling on foot or by wheeled vehicles, but we will never know ... 

 

... it is so difficult to be explanatory enough, so that those who waste time answering you at least have the feeling that it is useful to do so? smirk.gif


Edited by ECP M42, 28 October 2021 - 05:37 AM.


#19 JorgeLima87

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 06:11 AM

as far as I can NOT understand from your constipated responses, you may be traveling on foot or by wheeled vehicles, but we will never know ... 

 

... it is so difficult to be explanatory enough, so that those who waste time answering you at least have the feeling that it is useful to do so? smirk.gif

 

 

Thank you for your help, it has certainly been helpful and I am sorry if you didn´t understand. The trips I do are on 4x4 overland and then hiking once I arrive. Im looking for something sturdy that can hold knocks when driving around and not too heavy to carry on a backpack. 

 

  

1 - I have never tried any of these models, but from what I can understand from the reviews and what I can guess based on all my knowledge and experience, I believe that the optical quality of the Pentax is better than that of the Nikon AE (but lower to that of the APM).

The focus is internal which makes those binoculars more accurate with alignments and more waterproof. I don't remember reading how focus rotation works, but I think it's smoother than the AE system (which is pretty cheap). Pentaxes seem to me to be built well and to perform just as well and for a long time. Surely they belong to a more specific project, which prefers to use high resolution and brightness eyepieces, making the binoculars more suitable for celestial observation, at the same time allowing a wide eye relief for eyeglass wearers, but where the only negative point is the greater relative weight, compared to the narrow field of view they offer (50° AFOV). 

 

 

From the description, sounds like the Pentax are more of a modern desgin than to the Nikon. Didn´t realise they had internal focus. The APM seem to be too heavy for my purpose and no central focus which can take a while getting used too. At the moment I´m leaning towards the Pentax. 


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#20 Cali

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 06:55 AM

You can get the refurbished Nikon action extremes for $130  from Nikon

 

https://www.nikonusa...:8ps:Binoculars

Thank you Blue72! I had no idea.

 

- Cal


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#21 clearwaterdave

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 07:15 AM

I have the Nikons and the Celestrons .,and the Nikons are much sharper to my eyes.,Not quite as much ummf but very nice views.,And they can focus on targets that are pretty close.,

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#22 Bkoh

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 07:21 AM

Thank you for your help, it has certainly been helpful and I am sorry if you didn´t understand. The trips I do are on 4x4 overland and then hiking once I arrive. Im looking for something sturdy that can hold knocks when driving around and not too heavy to carry on a backpack. 

 

  

 

From the description, sounds like the Pentax are more of a modern desgin than to the Nikon. Didn´t realise they had internal focus. The APM seem to be too heavy for my purpose and no central focus which can take a while getting used too. At the moment I´m leaning towards the Pentax. 

If you want something not too heavy, Opticron has very light 50mm binoculars around 800g:

 

https://www.opticron...urer-t-wp-12x50

https://www.amazon.c...B074WG3V4F?th=1

 

Its 10x50 sibling is recommended for beginners by Steve Tonkin, a binocular astronomy expert. The Opticron Adventurer T is very affordable, so if you run over it in your 4x4 or bash it on rocks during the hike, it's not too costly to replace.

 

The Pentax porros are well thought of optically. Their main weakness is a narrow apparent field of view ("tunnel vision"). Many owners use them as a secondary pair alongside a lower-power, wider-view bino. For a single bino on a trip, perhaps one with a wider field of view would be more fun to use. If you do get the Pentax, consider bringing along a small 8x30/8x32 with a wide field of view too, it will be a different experience.



#23 ECP M42

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 07:50 AM

Ok, it is still not clear to me if they will also be used to observe the local fauna or just to look at the hilly-mountain landscapes, during the day (which could be done also with a 280g 10oz CF 12x30 roof).
So, for hiking I would not be happy to wear the 1350g 48oz of the APM around my neck, which would be also a little more uncomfortable than the other two, due to its independent focus. But once under the starry sky, it would be the one of the three I wish I had (undoubtedly). So, it would be a rather difficult choice, for me, for at least two reasons:
1 - Both the Pentax and the Nikon still weigh more than 1Kg 35oz and this is not suited for hiking (already tried on my shoulders).
2 - I'm used to the IF and I can also manage it efficiently for terrestrial observations, so that it covers the various depths of field that are needed me (even if at 12x the DOF is less manageable than a 7x, for example).

Cestus (in post # 10) gave an input. Giving up some points of optical quality, it is possible to find some 12x50 roof models, weighing less than 900g 32oz and with central focus, more suitable for terrestrial and walking. But it is off topic.


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#24 ckwastro

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 01:16 PM

My Pentax 12x50s are 1080g, and looking up the Nikon AE, they are 1043g. Personally, I would not want to carry either of them on hikes at that weight and they are far more bulky than similar roof prism models. Everyone is different but for me these are hand-held for short periods either standing or leaning back in a chair, but would be best mounted. 


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#25 hallelujah

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 01:24 PM

 

it is possible to find some 12x50 roof models, weighing less than 900g 32oz and with central focus, more suitable for terrestrial and walking. But it is off topic.

A lightweight 12x is going to show greater hand shake when used for hand held viewing.

 

Stan
 


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