Quote Originally Posted by Vondragonnoggin View Post
I'm sorry. I have no experience with those, so cannot comment, but in general that is something you'll find in just about any of the Skymaster series also except maybe the zooms. The Ultima series is often referred to with appreciation of better views. For the Skymasters, it can be a gamble to get a good pair, but a lot do get a good one and are plenty happy. I cannot account for anyone else's preferences, but I know I spent money on a few lower cost bins and had a mixed bag of experiences. Some I really like and others I sold or took apart for experimenting on.

Personally I think anything that gets you out observing that you find enjoyable is great. That's why we have so many options on equipment. Pick what's acceptable to you and never worry about someone else's opinion unless you are specifically trying to follow advice to a tee.

The 15x70 Skymaster is a perfect example of this. Some highly recommend it, some highly recommend you avoid those. I think with a little research, even if you got a moderately messed up pair, you could tinker with it, fix collimation, fix the flimsy mounting. All up to you on acceptable. As I stated before, I just hope people adequately mount larger bins. Myself, I can't hold a 15x70 steady for the life of me and I like my bins for long observation generally. I use an 8x42 Konus Emperor, and Nikon Action Extreme 10x50 for hand held use, neither of which are considered expensive, but also not considered super low budget either. They are quite acceptable to me in use, but it generally isn't longer than about 20-30 minutes and I vastly prefer the mounted bins and deeper penetration of higher powers with larger objectives. My gamble on a pair of Zhumell Tachyon 25x100's paid off when I received a well collimated pair with good mechanical QC done. Others weren't so lucky, but it hooked me on binos and I still have them and use them occasionally. Mostly it's binocular telescope use now though.
Thanx ! I think you are right in general ! I own about eight pair of binos of varying sizes and price ranges, some more for terrestrial than astral but all look up occasionally. One time about 10 yrs.ago COSTCO had a pair of compact Bushnell 8x42 binos on sale for $29 that had a cloth case and BAK4 glass so I said what the heck and bought them, I mean BAK4 for $29 you can't go wrong even if I just used them at my camp for birds, game etc. When I got them home and tried them both day and night the views were incredibly bright, clear, undistorted to the edges, very sharp all for that low price, when I look back I should have bought half a dozen pair for gifts ? I keep them around for a quick Grab & Go. My point is that the odd time no matter what price / quality level you do run across an unexpected steal / bargain as with anything but in general you normally do get what you pay for !