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Need advice on hunting binoculars

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by redneck2, Jul 8, 2008.

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  1. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    I have a set of small bino's for deer hunting. What I'm looking for is something bigger that I can use to glass a PD town for multiple hours in a day. Size and weight are not an issue. In fact, I suspect bigger size and weight would tend to be more steady. I'll be able to rest my elbows on the shooting table, so they should be steady.

    Right now, I'm looking at Leupold Olympic in 12x50 and Zeiss Conquest. Leica's and Swarovski are a little steep unless I could find a screaming deal. I'm looking at the $350-500 range.
     
  2. Harve Curry

    Harve Curry Member

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    Go to a sporting goods that will let you look outside just before dark. Dim light is one way to seperate good glass from bad. Don't just look through the center of the lenses but around the whole pictur, outside edges included. Bright day will make cheap lenses look good. Like your thinking, look at 50mm objective lenses and 10+ power.
     
  3. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

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    Personally, I would probably not go above 10x, but might be tempted by the Leupold 12s. Methinks the 50mm objective lens is the right decision - IF - the overall quality is there.

    As "Harve" said - and this is an Absolute - carefully study the clarity of the entire picture - especially around the edges. Very slight imperfections - after even an hour's worth of glassing - can give you a headache that would kill a locomotive.

    Good Luck !!

    :cool:
     
  4. skinewmexico

    skinewmexico Member

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    I got some 10x50 Pentaxs, and they are great.
     
  5. dakotasin

    dakotasin Member

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    bushnell, pentax, and brunton all make good glass in that price range. of course, there are dozens of other options as well, but those 3 i have experience with.

    be careful with swift - they have great glass for the money, but i find them to be exceedingly fragile (but, i am hard on stuff).

    nikon, of course, is always a contender, but i think better buys are available.

    the leupold-badged glass are pretty good, but again, i think better buys are available.

    good luck - a binocular hunt is about as frustrating as things get. wait until you start spotter shopping...

    speaking of spotters, if the primary use for this glass is a dog town, why even mess w/ binoculars? i think you'll get greater utility out of a spotter. look to nikon's ed or cabela's ed glass for good buys in spotters.
     
  6. huntershooter

    huntershooter Member

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    CDNN has/had 8X32 Kahles for 450.00 +-.
    They are my favorite "hunting" bino's.
    My 10X42 Steiner and Zeiss are substantially heavier/too bulky for all day carry.
     
  7. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

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    I would agree with "Dakotasin" about Swift binoculars. I bought one pair and there are some good things to say about them but I won't buy Swift again.

    :cool:
     
  8. Geno
    • Contributing Member

    Geno Member

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    I have the Minolta Classic 10X50W Wide angle 6.5. The lenses are crystal clear, rugged, and wow do they work well in low-light. I'm not certain if Minolta still makes his model. I didn't like too much magnification in binoculars. If I ever decide to go over 10X, I'll move over to a spotting scope. I hear Leupold is good for the money.
     
  9. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    Well, I've come to a couple of conclusions. I found out that probably the best place to get advice is from bird watchers. Now, I have a few bird feeders but going out in the woods for days on end in the hopes of seeing some exotic feathered critter doesn't light me up. However, those people are hard core and use binoculars for hours on end.

    From the reviews I read, the best mid-range models are close enough to the really high end ones that it's about impossible for most people to tell the difference. I was originally thinking Leica, Swarovski, or Zeiss. I've talked to a few guys that have them, and there is apparently little difference between them and the very high end Bushnell and Leo's with the exception of price.

    Thanks for all the help.
     
  10. Harve Curry

    Harve Curry Member

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    Let us know what you get.
     
  11. justice4all

    justice4all Member

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    All my optics, from now on, will be some variety of Leupold. In terms of price per performance, they are exceptional, IMHO.
     
  12. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    One name that keeps cropping up is Brunton. Not the first name I would have thought of, but they seem to have a strong following. Brunton Eterna's seem to be the product of choice.

    I'd agree with the Leupold thing also. The 12x50 ones that I tried were extremely clear. I could very easily pick out mortar lines in bricks over 400 yards away.
     
  13. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

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    I took up birding as a means to hone my obsevation skills for hunting, and am glad I did. A few years after getting seriously into the birding thing I spotted half the face of a mountain lion watching me from cover about 50-60-yds. away. Turned out there were two half-grown lions there trying to figure out what I was. Absolutely Great moment !

    But to the point - birders, especially those on birding forums, get on brand name gigs just like hunters so you would do well to check several birding sites to get a wider picture of what birders are using. Be aware, too, that many birders are just as willing to buy expensive equipment just so they crow about it as some hunters are to buy expensive stuff just so they can strut about how much they paid for their gear. And of course those members of both groups always talk like everything less expensive is junk and bought only by scum birders or scum hunters.

    You can't go wrong with Leupold, and Nikon, Bushnell and a couple others produce some really nice binoculars too. Zeiss is Nice - but NOT necessary.

    :cool:
     
  14. Pilot

    Pilot Member

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    I use Steiner Predator Pro 8x32 for hunting. They're clear, good in low light and fairly inexpensive. I think I paid $179 at Sportsmen's Warehouse.

    I'd consider these also. I have the full size 10x50's and they're great, but too big and heavy for hunting. Check out their compact models.

    http://www.valdada.com/catalog/2dc81f54-6d20-479e-8552-c6831ae04543.aspx
     
  15. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    I have a small pair for deer hunting. These are for a prairie dog hunt. Staying in one spot. No (or little) carrying. I need to see itty bitty varmints at 400 yards+.
     
  16. K3

    K3 Member

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    I've got a pair of Steiner Predators 8X32s that I really like. Excellent in low light and I have no problem watching deer a LONG way off out in West Texas canyon country.
     
  17. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Member

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    I'd go with the Nikon Monarch line in what ever power you prefer and I wouldn't go above 10x. I'm quite pleased with mine.

    I use 6x Leupolds (Yosemite Model) for woods hunting. They are medium sized, inexpensive, and a real value. They stay in my truck and go with me if I'm boating for wildlife viewing. They're waterpoof.
     
  18. Harve Curry

    Harve Curry Member

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    Depends on where you hunt or live. In the SW mountains you can be looking very far away and see things, later wish you hadn't seen. I wish I could get buy with a smaller pair then the Steiner Predator 12x40, 10x50 would be better. But when I bought them these were new hot set up. They are light weight, some kind of polymer body. Individual eye focus I tend to like. For whatever you get put the suspenders on them, like from Crooked Horn or Cabelas.
     
  19. dakotasin

    dakotasin Member

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    again... it really sounds like a spotter w/ a top end of 45 - 60 is what you are after. if you go fixed, stick around 30-35x... the wind can make a spotter difficult to use at high magnification.
     
  20. koja48

    koja48 member

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    My Nikon 10x Monarchs work well for me, but as said above . . . sounds like a spotting scope would serve your needs better.
     
  21. X-Rap

    X-Rap Member

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    I have a pair of 10 x 50 Swarovski's and they are 20 yrs old. At about 15 yrs and miles and hours of hard service I sent them in for factory rebuild. It cost $350.00 including shipping. I always ask myself how many other pairs I would have bought of lesser quality in that time. I know that I have had little eye fatigue and headaches even when they were scratched and in need of repair.
    Its well worth consideration to look at what brand can and will at an affordable price, totally rehab their product. They came back literally as new with replaced lenses.
     
  22. Steel Talon

    Steel Talon Member

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    Pentax 12X50
     
  23. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    This was my original post...

    I have a Bushnell 20-60x spotting scope.

    I have ordered a set of these http://www.snipershide.com/forum/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=594030&page=1

    They're provided by one of the members here.

    I have a friend that used to have some. He said they were exceptional. He sold them to someone else and has regretted it ever since. If they're not what I believe they are, he will buy them and think I'll get the 12x50 Leupolds (unless something better comes along first).
     
  24. Harve Curry

    Harve Curry Member

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    So your getting the 12x50's. Tempting!
    Do you know what low light filters are? (Besides cigarettes).
     
  25. Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow

    Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow member

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