Binocluars Help

Sep 11th, 2005, 06:57 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2005
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Binocluars Help

Looking for current information on binoculars for a safari...close to buying the Steiner safari 8x30 from Amazon at $190 but if there are any other recommendations at a better price, I am willing to listen.
micjor is offline  
Sep 11th, 2005, 08:19 AM
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You may want to read this thread as I got great recommendations from this board and am enjoying my new binos. I purchased 10x42 for safari.
CarlaM is offline  
Sep 11th, 2005, 08:28 AM
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Here is another thread, "Binoculars on Safari",
Sep 11th, 2005, 03:42 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
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Hi people,
This may seem a funny question BUT... I will be travelling with my partner, would it be a better if we had a pair of binoculars each or could we manage sharing. Any comments on your experiences would be appreciated.. Would the money be better spent buying a single more expensive pair.
traceyg is offline  
Sep 11th, 2005, 03:47 PM
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If one of you is busy making photos or videos, one pair should be enough.

Sep 11th, 2005, 03:51 PM
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Definitely a pair each. Often the guides point out things I cannot photograph -- too far away -- and we both wanted to see it. Much better having your own pair.
mpkp is offline  
Sep 11th, 2005, 04:04 PM
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Binos usually give you a magnification of 8x or 10x. If you can't reach that with your camera, I would suggest to invest in a better camera or lens. It's much more rewarding if you can see all this wonderful sightings still after your trip.

Sep 12th, 2005, 05:16 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
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We brought 2 pairs for our August safari and only ever used one. Usually, one of us wanted a break from the binocs around the time the other got the better view. And to me, if I couldn't make it out with my naked eye, it usually wasn't worth looking thruogh the binocs for.
schlegal1 is offline  
Sep 14th, 2005, 05:39 AM
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I'm been following this board for several years but I have no Africa experience and limited wildlife experience. Nevertheless, I though I would share my experience researching binoculars for our recent trip to Alaska. Admittedly, the requirements were different (water- and fog-proof, light enough to hike with all day) but here are my comments:

Micjor- If you haven't already pulled the trigger on those Steiners, consider the Pentax DCF MP 8x28. My wife liked them so much she practically had them glued to her eyes. We got them for under $150 with a generous rebate, but it looks like now they're equivalent to the Steiners. The Steiners have a wider field of view (50 extra ft at 1000 yrds) and are a bit brighter, the Pentax are weatherproof and 1/3 lighter. I second (third?) the recommendation to try them out yourself.

Tracyg- We had a similar dilemma, and for our second pair I opted for the Bushnell Legend 8x26 porros. B&H has them for $80 delivered. They offer unbeatable quality for the money and even come with a decent strap and a lens cloth. The Pentax optics are better, but not twice as good.

Some of the comments on the linked threads addressed the camera vs binoculars issue, and I'm in the camp of having both. I was using a Panasonic Fz20, and although the zoom is 432mm, the electronic viewfinder was much less satisfying than those 8x Bushnell binocs. Obviously an SLR with a long zoom would be different, but I suspect that if you haven't yet invested $100 on binoculars you probably haven't spent $1000 on an SLR kit with a long lens.

Again, I offer the caveat that I was looking for light equipment, and 8x42s or bigger offer advantages. I did do quite a bit of reading on birding websites, and several mentioned that compacts have enjoyed huge leaps forward in quality.

Finally, I will mention this pearl since I didn't see it on the linked threads: At any given price, porro prisms will offer MUCH better optics than roof prisms. That's probably a big reason why my Bushnell porros are so close to the Pentax roofs that cost more than twice as much.
99mkw is offline  
Sep 15th, 2005, 09:20 AM
Join Date: Aug 2004
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I have a camera that does get me to 9x magnification (more with a 1.4 extender) BUT I still absolutely enjoy using binoculars, and when my travelling companion (who brought only a crappy pair) discovered the pleasures of good binoculars (mine) I ended up sharing way too much for my taste. I vote for binos for each traveller, but it really is a matter of personal taste, use and involvement. However given the cost of your whole trip to Africa, why economize on one of the things that can make such a difference in what you see, how you see it, and your enjoyment of the experience?
ddgattina is offline  
Sep 15th, 2005, 09:49 AM
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That's right.
1 good binos = 1 Mombo night
Sep 15th, 2005, 10:37 AM
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Aardvark is right -- my new Leica binos did cost about as much as a night at Mombo on my 2006 itinerary. But they are amazing, and I think I'll definitely get my money's worth from them.

jasher is offline  
Sep 15th, 2005, 08:05 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 44
I bought a separate pair for everyone in my family - Minolta 8x40 WP Activa from B & H for 135/each. Loved them and would do the same again.
cookndoc is offline  

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