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Rating out the mid-level, mid-sized 8x32s

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Rating out the mid-level, mid-sized 8x32s

Postby fireroad on Tue Mar 03, 2009 4:10 pm

Joanie et al - I have access to only one of these bino's so I was wondering if folks could rank them or a point out the pluses and minuses...and maybe which one is a best buy. I'm looking for a pair of 8x32s for hunting and early morning bird watching when I don't feel like dragging out my 8x42s. Based on what I've read it sounds like the Pentax are my best bet...am I missing any others?

Pentax 8x32 DCF SP
Kowa 8x32
Gold Ring HD 8x32
Steiner 8x32 Merlins
Minox BL 8x32 BR

I have tried and liked the Merlins but was concerned by the close focus.
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Postby Jne_K on Wed Mar 04, 2009 6:59 am

Hi

If you like the Merlin, go for it. Any bino with a close focus under 10 feet is going to be fine for birding. Very rare case when you would need closer than the 8 ft listed for the Merlin.

Of these, I would rate the Pentax as the best in terms of overall optics and the SP also scores very well in handling. The Gold Ring HD is certainly a good glass, but at 27 ounces, it weighs as much or more than many 8x42s. Love the way the Kowa handles, but optics are not quite up to the SP.
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Postby Guest on Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:39 am

Thanhks Joanie! So with prices being so close, it sounds like the Pentax is an overall better optic and better value for the pricethen the Merlins?
Guest
 

Postby Jne_K on Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:45 am

Hi

I prefer the SP, yes, but that does not mean the Merlin is not a good choice. At this price, personal preference is a factor. If you like the Steiner for its handling and for the Steiner brand name and the made in Germany status that goes along with it, go for the Merlin. That is a perfectly legit reason to buy it.
Thanks for posting with us
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