Recommend me some binoculars.

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by 68Goldfish, Sep 3, 2018.

  1. 68Goldfish

    68Goldfish Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2006
    Port Orchard WA
    I’ve got a trip coming up real soon and I want to get a decent pair of binoculars. Actually I’m going to Vegas and I want to look around and see things from the balcony in our hotel room. I suppose that should give you an idea of the kind of range I’m looking for (if that even means anything). I’m probably looking to spend maybe 1 to 2 bills. Any recs?
  2. Stumbo

    Stumbo Guest

    Feb 11, 2008
    Try Google earth. Save some $$.
    MattZilla likes this.
  3. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois
    You'll want something fairly compact and portable, which will be easier to hold steady. If you're using them to check out the "scenery" in a city then a wide angle of view is a plus.

    I'd recommend something in the 7x30 - 8x40 range. There are multitudes of choices in the size starting at "cheapo" models and going up to thousands of dollars. If your budget is $100-$200, then your money will be best spent of optical quality rather than fancy features that you don't need.
  4. MattZilla


    Jun 26, 2013
    I recommend you sell at least 65 of your goldfish.
  5. 68Goldfish

    68Goldfish Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2006
    Port Orchard WA
    Lol, that’s great.
    I was trying to make my post sound not so creepy but I knew it was coming out that way.
  6. Funky Ghost

    Funky Ghost Translucently Groovy

    I have a pair of full sized field glasses and would recommend a compact version. Mine are fantastic and have held up well but are flippin heavy on the neck. Not a great trail/hike option at all. Excellent for stop and view use.

    Something like these would serve you well I'd imagine.

    Vortex® Diamondback Compact 10x28 Binoculars : Cabela's
    68Goldfish likes this.
  7. I have a pair of these Pentax 10x50 binoculars, and recommend them highly.
    Pentax 10x50 S-Series SP WP Binocular 65872 B&H Photo Video

    The guy behind the counter tried to convince me to get a pair of 8x50, saying that the image will be too jumpy and unstable, but that wasn't the case.

    We can get into the discussion about full-sized versus compact binoculars, and I'll say this: Compact binoculars are easier to carry, but you can't compare the performance that a pair of full-sized glasses will give you.

    The full-size are much easier to look through for long periods of time, and their low-light performance is superior. When I use them at dusk or night, the image is so clear and contrasty.

    You might want to take a compact unit with you more often, but if you can get past the slight inconvenience of carrying a larger set with you, you won't regret it.

    As soon as I brought 10x50s home, and compared it with the compact 8x25s I had, I stopped using the smaller ones.

    I tried Nikon, Bushnell and a few other brands in the store, and I'm sure they're just as good, I'm just a Pentax guy.

    Good luck.

    Mike ;)
    68Goldfish likes this.
  8. FilterFunk

    FilterFunk Everything is on the ONE! Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2010
    Mine are Garrett Optical (now owned by Oberwerk) 10x50.

    I had a decent pair of Bushnells (same size), but looking through the Garretts makes looking through the Bushnells seem like an overcast day. Upon doing the research several years ago, I discovered that some binocular lenses are "fully coated," some are "multi-coated," etc. It was recommended that "fully broadband multi-coated" was the way to go, and that's what I got with the Garretts. The lenses are much better at "light gathering," so the image is much brighter and clearer.

    I can't remember what I paid for them, but it was definitely more than getting a typical pair of binoculars at Big 5. Worth every penny, though!:thumbsup:
    68Goldfish likes this.
  9. ElectroVibe


    Mar 2, 2013
    I don't know much but I've heard good about Nikon. I hadn't thought about Pentax, but I've been intrigued since I saw Ringo Starr using a Pentax camera in their first movie.
    68Goldfish likes this.
  10. 68Goldfish

    68Goldfish Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2006
    Port Orchard WA
    Thanks for all the info guys! I’m going to get to looking for some tonight.
  11. Russell L

    Russell L

    Mar 5, 2011
    Cayce, SC
    I tecommend Nikon Action Extreme 10x50. They have a 65° field of view as opposed to the Pentax's 50°, and are sharper on axis. The Pentax is sharper to the edge, but that is due to its narrower view. Either are great binos, though. The Nikons sell for about $180.

    Make sure it is the Action Extreme and not just regular Action series.

    There is also an 8x40 version if you prefer something smaller and lighter, but the 10x50 will give better views. It is also the most prefered size for hand held astronomy viewing. They have good eye relief (how easy they are to look into and see the whole field of view), and provide an exit pupil factor of 5 (as do 8x40, 7x35, etc.). They are waterproof also.

    It helps to understand some terms before purchasing. Google can help. The Nikon AE 10x50 gets good reviews in the astronomy community. I found them to be the best buy for the price.

    You could learn more at, the world's largest astro community, to my knowledge. I am a member (RussL). Many reviews there. Not sure if you might have to sign up to read reviews, but you can lurk around some. It's free for membership, though.
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
    68Goldfish likes this.
  12. +1 to what Russell said above.

    I didn't mention that whatever brand or power of binoculars you get, consider buying a tripod and a binocular to tripod adapter.

    You will appreciate any binoculars a lot more if you have them mounted on a tripod. Everything will be razor-sharp, and the shake factor just won't be there. Look at the moon through tripod-mounted glasses! :hyper:

    Mike ;)
    FilterFunk and 68Goldfish like this.
  13. Funky Ghost

    Funky Ghost Translucently Groovy

  14. I have a question: Does anyone reading this have a pair of really expensive binoculars?

    I'm talking about $500 or more.

    What do you like about them?

    Are they really worth the extra money?

  15. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    68Goldfish likes this.
  16. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois
    68Goldfish likes this.
  17. Badwater


    Jan 12, 2017
    Depends on how high up you're in a hotel. On the strip you can get to the Stratosphere tower, Link wheel, or Vegas Eiffel tower to get spectacular views. And some of the big hotels may have good views, but those rooms may cost more. Because all the tall buildings are in a row, you may not get much of a view of the Strip other than parking structures and utility buildings.

    In the Down Town area, there are no views. All the hotels are short with a lot of structures blocking any views. And Fremont Street has no view from above. It's all blocked by stairwell structures and hotels within close proximity. Thus, the view is about rock throwing distance.

    Nevertheless, there are a few open desert landscape areas just outside the city of Vegas. And that's where the binos will come in handy.
  18. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Suspended Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    Vortex Diamondback 10x40
  19. JKos

    JKos Supporting Member

    Oct 26, 2010
    Torrance, CA
    Leupold Yosemite binoculars are really nice. Available in 8x30 and 10x30.

    - John
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