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#5484629 - 12/17/14 08:41 PM Best Value - high end binos
P & Y Offline
Tracker

Registered: 11/28/10
Posts: 959
Loc: North East Texas
I'm Upgrading binos soon and wanted some input on brands to check out. The only quality pair of binos I have spent time with in the field are the 10x42 Swarovski ELs. While they were exceptional, I want to keep the pricing in the middle of the road. Prefer to spend 2k or less. The Swarovski SLCs 10x42 caught my eye, what others should I look at?


Edited by P & Y (12/17/14 08:58 PM)
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#5484633 - 12/17/14 08:43 PM Re: Best mid priced binos [Re: P & Y]
P & Y Offline
Tracker

Registered: 11/28/10
Posts: 959
Loc: North East Texas
wait a minute, this isn't the optics section. Mods please move!
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#5484636 - 12/17/14 08:44 PM Re: Best mid priced binos [Re: P & Y]
Sneaky Online   content
The "Grouch"

Registered: 10/22/12
Posts: 16348
Loc: Winters
2k isn't exactly middle of the road. That's pretty high end. If you can swing the Swaros, then go for it. They're hard to beat.
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#5484674 - 12/17/14 09:00 PM Re: Best mid priced binos [Re: P & Y]
505ed Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 10/15/14
Posts: 469
Loc: Blanco texas

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#5485648 - 12/18/14 10:46 AM Re: Best mid priced binos [Re: P & Y]
P & Y Offline
Tracker

Registered: 11/28/10
Posts: 959
Loc: North East Texas
I'm interested in those Leicas. Wish someone close to me carried them.
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#5485711 - 12/18/14 11:17 AM Re: Best mid priced binos [Re: P & Y]
Toxarch Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 03/09/11
Posts: 1722
Loc: Parker County
I'm interested in those Leicas too. I wish someone would buy a pair of them for me.
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#5485972 - 12/18/14 01:46 PM Re: Best mid priced binos [Re: P & Y]
Gravytrain Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/06/11
Posts: 18089
Loc: Rowlett, Tx
I'm interested in a pair of Leupold Yosemite's at $99, oh wait I already have a pair!
Darn good for the money!

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#5486082 - 12/18/14 02:53 PM Re: Best mid priced binos [Re: P & Y]
P & Y Offline
Tracker

Registered: 11/28/10
Posts: 959
Loc: North East Texas
Anyone compared the leicas and swaro side by side? I hate buying glass without looking through them first. Looking through them at the store doesn't tell you jack. Any other suggestions on brands or models?
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#5486101 - 12/18/14 03:02 PM Re: Best mid priced binos [Re: P & Y]
kmon1 Online   content
junior

Registered: 09/27/06
Posts: 20729
Loc: Texas
Cabela's Euro are good for the $ made by Meopta. Agree looking in the store doesn't tell you much. If looking for a pair of good binos go to Cabela's and get them to take you outside at dusk with a each of Euro's, Swaro, Leica, and Vortex Razor so you can compare them in failing light outside in the real world. That list is where I would start.
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#5486108 - 12/18/14 03:07 PM Re: Best Value - high end binos [Re: P & Y]
jeffbird Offline


Registered: 03/09/09
Posts: 1773
Yes, I've compared and used both side by side for birding related uses. The "bird" in my handle comes from 25 years of volunteer work in bird conservation. I use binos often.

Swaro and Leica are both are outstanding. One is not better than the other. They are like comparing different brands of boots. One will feel better in hand, and look better to your to your eye.

The Swaro tends to have more of a blue/green balance in the image, and is much finer focusing, but which also means slower focusing. Also, the image is "flatter," the Leica has more "depth." One is not better than the other, they are just different. Leica has more red/brown in the image and is closer to neutral/natural colors if color fidelity is important. Leicas also focus more quickly. Both are extremely durable and reliable. There is not a bad choice between the two, just a personal preference.

Either can be found within your $2,000 a budget.

Leica just came out with an replacement for their top-end model, so the now replaced Ultravids can be found on closeout with vendors at some nice discounts. After Christmas, the discounts will be even deeper.

Look for demos at Euro Optics, Eagle Optics, or Cameraland. Sign up for their email alerts for specials.

The Swaro SLC's are outstanding quality, and the only really noticeable difference for most people in most uses will be the weight difference.

Also watch ebay after Christmas. Brand new in the box will show up for that price or less.

Also, used Swaros and Leicas in excellent to near new condition definitely can be found in that price range.

Leicas tend to have weaker resale value, so very nice Ultravids can be found for far below your budget limit.

Watch for them on ebay, just make sure returns are allowed in case they are not in top notch condition.

Top end binos will last a long time with regular use.

Having said that, the binos with rangefinders are a whole different piece of equipment. They will have a limited useful life due to the rangefinder.

Warranties on RF binos are short for the RF components, and LRF's are improving constantly. I've owned LRF binos and returned both within weeks.

Now I use Swaro binos and the Swaro LRF monocular. I keep watching the LRF binos, but they are not up to the same level optically as the stand alone binos, and the LRF's are going to break, it is just a question of when.


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#5486116 - 12/18/14 03:12 PM Re: Best Value - high end binos [Re: P & Y]
cabosandinh Online   content
Pro Tracker

Registered: 08/12/13
Posts: 1250
Loc: Dallas, TX
the ones mentioned are great glasses

I am a ZEISS guy, their Victory line runs $2000 or less

Optics Planet
Euro Optic
Cabelas

should have them on line

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#5486149 - 12/18/14 03:37 PM Re: Best Value - high end binos [Re: P & Y]
syncerus Online   content
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 12/01/08
Posts: 2042
Loc: Dallas, TX
In the quality / price / weight trade, I gave up weight and went with the heavier Docter Optik binos for a more reasonable price.
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#5486462 - 12/18/14 06:29 PM Re: Best Value - high end binos [Re: P & Y]
ccoker Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 3359
I am very happy with my Meopta HD 10x42
3 seasons with them and I have used them in conjuction with the top if the line S&B, Zeiss, leica, Swaro, etc.. scopes and no scope has out performed them.
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#5486907 - 12/18/14 10:16 PM Re: Best Value - high end binos [Re: P & Y]
P & Y Offline
Tracker

Registered: 11/28/10
Posts: 959
Loc: North East Texas
Good Input so far! This gives me some options to check out. While the rangefinder would be convenient, I don't have to have it. May be better off going with regular glasses to cut down on the weight.
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#5489046 - 12/20/14 09:26 AM Re: Best Value - high end binos [Re: P & Y]
kmon1 Online   content
junior

Registered: 09/27/06
Posts: 20729
Loc: Texas
While the rangefinder option is cool and works great in Binos, know it is electronics and probably will not outlast the glass and useful life of good Binos. Plus that feature does add weight.
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