Author Topic: Birding Binoculars?  (Read 1651 times)

Online PopeyesPappy

Birding Binoculars?
« on: March 13, 2018, 07:30:52 AM »
Mom likes to watch the birds. She has a pair of nice binoculars that she paid around $500 for 30 years ago, but she took them to my brother's in Florida and left them there. Now she is looking for a new pair and asked me to help her find something nice, but not terribly expensive.

I'm looking at Bushnell Elite E2 8x42 or 10x42. I can get the 8x32 for about $290 and the 10x42 for $330 with the expires soon 30% rebate. Does anybody have any experience with these? Is there something else I should be looking at around that price point? What is better for birding 8 or 10x?
Save a life. Adopt a Greyhound.


Offline SGOS

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2018, 10:47:13 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
Mom likes to watch the birds. She has a pair of nice binoculars that she paid around $500 for 30 years ago, but she took them to my brother's in Florida and left them there. Now she is looking for a new pair and asked me to help her find something nice, but not terribly expensive.

I'm looking at Bushnell Elite E2 8x42 or 10x42. I can get the 8x32 for about $290 and the 10x42 for $330 with the expires soon 30% rebate. Does anybody have any experience with these? Is there something else I should be looking at around that price point? What is better for birding 8 or 10x?
I've had two pairs of Bushnells over the years.  I lost one in the woods, and replaced them with a model called the Bushnell Custom Compact, which is no longer in production.  I used them for hunting, but the Compacts were too small for birding, although I've used them for that.  I'm not much of a birder.  This probably isn't much help, but I think Bushnell had more of a mid to low end reputation back when I bought mine, but I don't know where they are today.  The name has been around for as long as I can remember.  They were perfectly adequate for what I wanted, but like stereo equipment, it starts to get exponentially more expensive to squeeze out small increments of improvements.  20 years ago, a hunting fanatic friend paid over $1000 dollars for a pair of Leitz Trinovids.  I had a brief look through them and they were very nice, but the extra $800 over mine didn't seem worth it.  For $1000 I expect to be able to see through walls.

Offline Baruch

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2018, 01:13:40 PM »
Optically, it is the square cm of the front lenses that matter.  Magnification is secondary.
שלום

Offline SGOS

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2018, 01:35:19 PM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
Optically, it is the square cm of the front lenses that matter.  Magnification is secondary.
In the past, that was true, but I'm wondering if improvements in lens technology cancels this out.  I don't know the answer, but modern cameras and cell phones have tiny lenses, at least the majority of those sold.  Perhaps that is a much resolution that the majority of the public wants.  I still lean toward larger lenses, but many of my photographer friends tell me they aren't necessary.  Or maybe they mean they just aren't necessary for the little people.

Online PopeyesPappy

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2018, 01:59:45 PM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
Optically, it is the square cm of the front lenses that matter.  Magnification is secondary.

lol

While technically that may be true I doubt mom is interested a $12,000 dollar, 60 lb pair of Yamato 20 x 120 Naval binoculars so she can have a larger objective lens for her back yard bird watching.
Save a life. Adopt a Greyhound.


Offline Baruch

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2018, 07:06:42 PM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
In the past, that was true, but I'm wondering if improvements in lens technology cancels this out.  I don't know the answer, but modern cameras and cell phones have tiny lenses, at least the majority of those sold.  Perhaps that is a much resolution that the majority of the public wants.  I still lean toward larger lenses, but many of my photographer friends tell me they aren't necessary.  Or maybe they mean they just aren't necessary for the little people.

That is possible because of electronics.  Are you talking about a CCD binocular with an artificial viewing screen?
שלום

Offline Baruch

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2018, 07:07:25 PM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
lol

While technically that may be true I doubt mom is interested a $12,000 dollar, 60 lb pair of Yamato 20 x 120 Naval binoculars so she can have a larger objective lens for her back yard bird watching.

Have her son carry them.  Make him prove he still loves her.
שלום

Online Cavebear

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2018, 02:38:02 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
Mom likes to watch the birds. She has a pair of nice binoculars that she paid around $500 for 30 years ago, but she took them to my brother's in Florida and left them there. Now she is looking for a new pair and asked me to help her find something nice, but not terribly expensive.

I'm looking at Bushnell Elite E2 8x42 or 10x42. I can get the 8x32 for about $290 and the 10x42 for $330 with the expires soon 30% rebate. Does anybody have any experience with these? Is there something else I should be looking at around that price point? What is better for birding 8 or 10x?

Forgive me for seeming STUPID, but the binoculars she left behind could be shipped back for $5...

Aside from that, I have a spotter scope that goes 10-30x for watching my local birds.  It fits on a camera tripod and is more stable than binoculars.
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Offline pr126

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2018, 05:32:30 AM »
Quote
Aside from that, I have a spotter scope that goes 10-30x for watching my local birds.  It fits on a camera tripod and is more stable than binoculars.
Good advice. I would go for that. Binoculars need a steady hand.
"Propaganda works best when those who are being manipulated are confident they are acting on their free will."
 - Joseph Goebbels

Offline SGOS

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2018, 06:06:04 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
Aside from that, I have a spotter scope that goes 10-30x for watching my local birds.  It fits on a camera tripod and is more stable than binoculars.
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
Good advice. I would go for that. Binoculars need a steady hand.
There are advantages and disadvantages to both.  No hand can hold anything as steady as a tripod.  But tripods are cumbersome, requiring you to adjust your position to suit the tripod.  Hand held binoculars are not as steady, but easier to do a search with greater speed, especially when you need to move a couple of feet, or change your position.  You also use both of your eyes, which for me is the biggest advantage.  Not to say I wouldn't want a spotting scope, but only for certain specialized situations.  For general ease of use, I prefer binoculars.

Online Cavebear

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2018, 06:30:26 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
There are advantages and disadvantages to both.  No hand can hold anything as steady as a tripod.  But tripods are cumbersome, requiring you to adjust your position to suit the tripod.  Hand held binoculars are not as steady, but easier to do a search with greater speed, especially when you need to move a couple of feet, or change your position.  You also use both of your eyes, which for me is the biggest advantage.  Not to say I wouldn't want a spotting scope, but only for certain specialized situations.  For general ease of use, I prefer binoculars.

I like the spotting scope because I mostly watch my birds at 3 feeders about equidistant from the house and the 30X spotter on the tripod is great for that.  And my hands tremble from old DDT exposure, so binoculars are unsteady. 

But it just occurred to me that I could set the digital camera on there and set it t take timed pics without me shaking it and hope for some good ones.  Duh!
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Offline SGOS

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2018, 06:41:32 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
I like the spotting scope because I mostly watch my birds at 3 feeders about equidistant from the house and the 30X spotter on the tripod is great for that.  And my hands tremble from old DDT exposure, so binoculars are unsteady. 

But it just occurred to me that I could set the digital camera on there and set it t take timed pics without me shaking it and hope for some good ones.  Duh!
That's the blessing of digital.  You can take hundreds of photos and just save the best ones.  And in photography is where tripods come into their own.  They can be critical for taking a good photo.

Online Cavebear

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2018, 06:49:37 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
That's the blessing of digital.  You can take hundreds of photos and just save the best ones.  And in photography is where tripods come into their own.  They can be critical for taking a good photo.

Yeah, the unshakiness of the hands...
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Online PopeyesPappy

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2018, 07:02:11 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
Forgive me for seeming STUPID, but the binoculars she left behind could be shipped back for $5...

She left them on purpose so she could watch Florida birds. She spends a few weeks at a time down there 3 or 4 times a year. They used to drive, but these days they prefer to fly. They take as little with them back and forth as they can get away with because it costs extra to check a bag.
Save a life. Adopt a Greyhound.


Online Cavebear

Re: Birding Binoculars?
« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2018, 07:36:54 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
She left them on purpose so she could watch Florida birds. She spends a few weeks at a time down there 3 or 4 times a year. They used to drive, but these days they prefer to fly. They take as little with them back and forth as they can get away with because it costs extra to check a bag.

Ah, My parents went back and forth between NH and FL and back, stopping here in MD for a few days every October and May. 
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

 

SMF spam blocked by CleanTalk