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Hunting binoculars

Old 02-02-2021, 03:51 AM
  #11  
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Vortex is a really cool company that occupies one of the leading places, do not worry, you made the right choice. As for the binoculars, I mostly use 8x, since in my opinion in most situations 10x is simply not needed. As I noticed, your question has already been answered, so I won't repeat it. Good hunting!
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Old 02-16-2021, 08:37 AM
  #12  
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First and foremost, weight is the most important consideration, depending on how fit you are and how far you're trekking. As always.
All things considered, generally speaking, I like my 6.5x21s, or a 6x28 or 7x30 (or similar) for all-timber (no open areas longer than 150 yards or so). Porros have a better depth of field for making out bedded deer, and give better value (quality/price). For mixed terrain, which is most common for me, I like an 8x30. Keeps it light, and is the best all purpose rig that still works. For wide open, I like a 10x - either a 10x32 if I'm going a long ways and need to keep it light, or a 10x42/43 if only going maybe a mile or so from the pickup on foot.

As for which, depends on budget as always. I like the sweet spot for value, which is the $120ish-$400 range. No, they're not as good as high end, but they give you what you need on a budget like mine. Go over $200 if you can. Most anything in this range works pretty well. My 8x30 Brunton porros and 10x32 Zen Ray roofies see most use (forget the models of these, but they're both the lowest end lines - I think Echo and ZRS - also, I do believe Zen-Ray is now kaput - shame). I've used the foreign-made Loopies, Pentaxes, Eagles, and Nikons as well in the past. Budget determines brand and model, and thus glass grind quality. You can go as high as you want. As always, check ebay for used first - better deals. The choices are myriad, so do your research.

I didn't go into detail about the exit pupil size, relative to weight and size, but those are all weighed into my final conclusions above.

Generally speaking, for birding, and 8x42/43 is the sweet spot. For hunting, you might want lighter depending on how far you go in, and you might want more power, depending on how wide open and how good your eyes are. Remember, you always sacrifice exit pupil size, field of view, and practical stability with more power, ceteris paribus.

Now if you *can* afford that $500-$2000 range, keep in mind that the extra glass grind quality will allow more power to be used with good clarity. So if you're in the higher end of things, and can't decide between a 7 and 8, or 8 and 10, round up - but you do still sacrifice the exit pupil size, which makes it harder / slower to find your target.

I guess you might could say that under 40 years old, an 8x42/43 (for woods) or 10x42/43 (for mixed or open) is best for under 40-45 years old, but over that, and 8x30/32 (woods) or 10x30/32 is the the best balance as you get older - just lighter. Lighter is critically important for us old dudes. As for roofies vs porros, that's mostly budget-determined. Both work great. If you're going for the value sweet spot of $120 - $400 but can get more in the $250 to $400 range, then I'd go for a roofie, as they as a bit smaller. If on the lower end of your general value category, the go for a porro - an ounce or two heavier, but better glass for the given price.

One more more thing, if your hunt is the spot-and-stalk style (typically sheep, goats, mulies), AND you have the wherewithal (youth and strength) to pack in more glass AND a tripod to use it without shaking, then it's helpful to have more glass obviously, to determine whether it's worth it to try to close the distance: either a compact spotting scope (maybe a 15x50 or 15x60/65), or big binos of higher quality in the range of 10x50, 12x50, 12x56, or possible even bigger, such as 15x56 or 15x70ish.

Last edited by CalHunter; 02-18-2021 at 07:59 AM.
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Old 02-16-2021, 08:51 AM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Danny Landrum
First and foremost, weight is the most important consideration, depending on how fit you are and how far you're trekking. As always.
All things considered, generally speaking, I like my 6.5x21s, or a 6x28 or 7x30 (or similar) for all-timber (no open areas longer than 150 yards or so). Porros have a better depth of field for making out bedded deer, and give better value (quality/price). For mixed terrain, which is most common for me, I like an 8x30. Keeps it light, and is the best all purpose rig that still works. For wide open, I like a 10x - either a 10x32 if I'm going a long ways and need to keep it light, or a 10x42/43 if only going maybe a mile or so from the pickup on foot.

As for which, depends on budget as always. I like the sweet spot for value, which is the $120ish-$400 range. No, they're not as good as high end, but they give you what you need on a budget like mine. Go over $200 if you can. Most anything in this range works pretty well. My 8x30 Brunton porros and 10x32 Zen Ray roofies see most use (forget the models of these, but they're both the lowest end lines - I think Echo and ZRS - also, I do believe Zen-Ray is now kaput - shame). I've used the foreign-made Loopies, Pentaxes, Eagles, and Nikons as well in the past. Budget determines brand and model, and thus glass grind quality. You can go as high as you want. As always, check ebay for used first - better deals. The choices are myriad, so do your research.

I didn't go into detail about the exit pupil size, relative to weight and size, but those are all weighed into my final conclusions above.

Generally speaking, for birding, and 8x42/43 is the sweet spot. For hunting, you might want lighter depending on how far you go in, and you might want more power, depending on how wide open and how good your eyes are. Remember, you always sacrifice exit pupil size, field of view, and practical stability with more power, ceteris paribus.

Now if you *can* afford that $500-$2000 range, keep in mind that the extra glass grind quality will allow more power to be used with good clarity. So if you're in the higher end of things, and can't decide between a 7 and 8, or 8 and 10, round up - but you do still sacrifice the exit pupil size, which makes it harder / slower to find your target.

I guess you might could say that under 40 years old, an 8x42/43 (for woods) or 10x42/43 (for mixed or open) is best for under 40-45 years old, but over that, and 8x30/32 (woods) or 10x30/32 is the the best balance as you get older - just lighter. Lighter is critically important for us old dudes. As for roofies vs porros, that's mostly budget-determined. Both work great. If you're going for the value sweet spot of $120 - $400 but can get more in the $250 to $400 range, then I'd go for a roofie, as they as a bit smaller. If on the lower end of your general value category, the go for a porro - an ounce or two heavier, but better glass for the given price.
well I am not going to say I am OLD< but I sure ain't young no more
I think before anyone decides that the difference in weight between a 8x32 VS an 8x42 (10x32--10-40)or like binoculars is rather SMALL difference in ounces IF that, and some can be had the same weight
the added light gathering and field of view to me is well worth the weight
and if you carry your binoculars on a good binocular harness the weight difference is Not there at all for me, but the added low light seeing and viewing is there as is the wider field of view on things!

which I gather will always be a personal decision, but weight over being able too see better ??
I take the seeing better and longer!

there are so many great binoculars on the market and with so many in weight ranges SO close, its pretty easy to get what you want in the same weight IMO!
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Old 02-16-2021, 08:58 AM
  #14  
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Yeah, I smell what you're steppin in. Since roofies are slightly lighter, if you can afford to spend enough to get the glass quality you need (probably at least $250 new / $200 used), then yeah, I'd agree that going to a 40-43 objective size is probably worth it, even with the weight, for the extra light - still I'd pick a 7 or 8 power for woodsy areas and an 8 or 10 for mixed to open terrain. But over 50, don't forget that every ounce matters. I do go in pretty far though, so it's a big calculus of age, fitness, and how far you're going in. If you're going in 5 miles or more (which is archery season for me), at my age, every HALF ounce matters!

Bottom line, a roofie in the 8x42/43 or 10x42/43 in anything in the quality range of over $250 new (assuming you're not shopping at cheaper than dirt) is almost never a mistake. You could write pages and pages on exactly which makes and models, so not going into that here. For going super light for the woods, especially on a tight budget, a porro or roofie in the 6-8x30-32 range, over $110-$120 is almost never a mistake and will do what you want it to do, almost certainly. I like to have at an exit pupil of at least 4mm (calulated as objective divided by magnif).

"...could say that under 40 years old, an 8x42/43 (for woods) or 10x42/43 (for mixed or open) is best for under 40-45 years old,"
Department of Redundancy Department - oops, ha ha.

Last edited by Danny Landrum; 02-16-2021 at 09:07 AM.
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Old 02-17-2021, 09:08 PM
  #15  
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I wear eyeglasses and finding binoculars that work well are a problem for me. Am I doing something wrong in using them? This is a great thread btw.
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Old 02-20-2021, 05:05 AM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by Popgunshooter
I wear eyeglasses and finding binoculars that work well are a problem for me. Am I doing something wrong in using them? This is a great thread btw.
Personally, I typically find my glasses hindering enough to make the extra effort to wear my contacts whenever Iím going to be using sights or optics. BUT...

When I do use binos or LRF with my glasses, I use one of two tricks - set the eyepiece all the way in and adjust the ocular focus to reach through my glasses, or MORE OFTEN, I adjust the ocular correction to account for my $ch!tt vision and I simply push my glasses up out of the way when glassing.
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Old 03-16-2021, 12:16 AM
  #17  
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Leopold has really good ones, but they can be expensive. I have Bushnell 10 x 42 mm paid 200$ works great.
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Old 03-24-2022, 02:07 PM
  #18  
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Binoculars eye relief greater than 16mm would be suitable for you indeed!
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Old 04-11-2022, 06:22 PM
  #19  
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What would you go with for the money?

Cabelas XT 10x42

Nikon ATB 10x42

What are your experiences?
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