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Thread: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

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    Default Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?



    After a year with my 6SE I'm ready to mix up my tools a bit. I want to sell the 6se and get a big dob for those times when I have the time and the conditions are right. The size and weight is not an issue. However, I still want something to grab and go, take as a carry on, and go hiking. Intended use would be some free hand, some monopod.

    I'm currently looking at the Resolux 15x70s, but would love suggestions for others. I have a flexible budget(was thinking around ~$400 but am open to others), but don't want a bargain bin pair that I will have to upgrade later. Any alternatives I should be aware of?

    I think the 15x70s are squarely in the middle of my requirements range and I'm thinking are a good choice(small enough to pack easy and fit onto a simple carry on, small enough to operate off a simple monopod). I have some reservations. Is there too much overlap between 8x42s/10x50s and 15x70s? I definitely want a very high end pair of small binos someday, but for now I'd be happy with a dedicated pair of astronomy binos. I just want the 15x70s to be big enough to justify once I have the smaller pair. Put another way, if I just have dob>15x70s, would later upgrading to dob>15x70s>8x42s cover my bases, or should I be thinking dob>25x100s>8x42? If there is no place in the future lineup for 15x70s, I'd rather just start with the big or small and skip the medium.

    Thanks for your help.

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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    Here are my thoughts. Whether they are of value or not...

    A 15x70 would serve as a nice grab n' go, stand alone binocular. While capable of being hand held, these would serve you best mounted on a monopod or tripod to reduce the shakes. You'll catch DSO's with these, but they'll be a bit on the small side. Outstanding on open clusters and wide-field views.

    If you want something to use in conjunction with your proposed dobsonian, a 10x50 would, in my mind, fit this role quite well. You can see a lot of things with these, but this is also a wonderful size for scouting the area you'll be star hopping in. A very versatile, all around general purpose astronomy binocular.

    When you get up into the 20x80 or 25x100 sizes, you are getting serious here. These definitely need to be mounted, and will serve a grab n' go role, and long sessions of observing too.

    The thing with binoculars is you can't have just one. Each size serves a different purpose in your arsenal. An 8x42 is wonderful for lying back in the grass in the summertime and just panning the heavens; A 10x50 is a great scouting tool, as well as a quick observer; a 15x70 is a great grab n' go tool for just relaxing but still doing some serious hunting; a 20x80 and larger gets you to some serious DSO observing.

    Since you've got a great budget for a potential 15x70, I encourage you to also consider the Oberwerk Ultras: BigBinoculars.com - Oberwerk Ultra Series 70mm Binoculars

    Don't know if any of that is of benefit or not. It's just my take on things whether good or bad.
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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    Hello Aronymous,

    go for the best binoculars within your budget.
    These premium 15x70 Astro-Physics Inc. are the best you can get for 399 USD, and they are rugged enough when you go hiking or for other outdoor and sports activities.

    Best,

    JG
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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    That's very helpful, thank you.

    Am I missing something or are those Oberworks almost exactly the same as the Resolux? The astro-physics look the same too.
    Last edited by aronymous; 02-24-2016 at 08:40 PM.

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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    They may be the same. They are the same as the ones JG linked to, only JG's are in stock while the Oberwerks are back ordered.

    EDIT: I believe the Resolux, Oberwerks, and the AstroPhysics come from the same source, as noted by JG below.
    Last edited by bladekeeper; 02-24-2016 at 08:52 PM.
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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    Wow, now I can see that the Oberwer Ultra 15x70 are cheaper than the Astro-Physics 15x70, the both are the same BA8 from United Optics in Kunming, China, designed and manufactured under the specs for the marine.

    Best,

    JG
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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    This model seems to dominate the ~$400 segment. What's the next step up? Fujinon 16x70s?

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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    Quote Originally Posted by aronymous View Post
    This model seems to dominate the ~$400 segment. What's the next step up? Fujinon 16x70s?
    I have had it, and sold after one season. Some CA I would not have exoected for that price, and no possibility to mount other nebular filters than those distributed by Fujimon.

    Next reasonable jump are the 25x100 IF Big Binoculars - Oberwerk 25x100mm IF Deluxe Binocular , but they are not as rugged as the 15x70 Ultras.

    Best,

    JG

    PS: See also the binoculars in my signature
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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    I had an epiphany tonight. I have a 6-24x50 rifle scope on a detachable mount so I took it off and took advantage of the skies tonight. A bit unwieldy, but it gave me a ballpark idea of what to expect objects to look like at various magnifications. General impression- wow!

    Targeted the Pleiades, Orion Nebula, and Jupiter. Granted the FoV and handling was not representative, but the size of the objects is informing me a good bit. Before I did this I had written off the 25x100s, but even at 24x50, Jupiter and the Orion Nebula offer a gorgeous view. Makes the ultra big bins tempting. I think the threshold for getting a good view of the nebula and moons of Jupiter was right at 15x. 10x is enjoyable and you can see the moons, just not as clearly. The nebula is a tease at 10x and I felt more satisfied at 15. At 6x i enjoyed the wide(r) FoV and ability to see a larger swath of the sky, but the individual objects and tight groups were harder to resolve. The contrast was also much worse than at 15x+. Certainly easier to hold steady on a lower power though.

    In summary, it's exactly like everyone here has told me, but it's nice to get a sample with my own eyes. I have to say, the 25x100s are very tempting now, but I don't think I'll be satisfied with just one, so I'm leaning towards the 8x42 ultra compact wide FoV + 15x70s for bright, more focused views. I'll still have the dob as my massive light bucket, so I think the ability to use to do short handheld or light tripod/monopod work wth the 15x70s fits my lifestyle better. Traveling/hiking with a heavy tripod or parallel mount seems unwieldy. I see myself getter more use out of the 15x70s.

    I'm slow to spend my money and give everything a lot of thought. Thanks again for all you input. It's been very informative and gives me much more confidence in my decision making.
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    Default Re: Will I outgrow 15x70s? Which for ~$400?

    So at this time I have a pair of 10x50s, a pair of 15x70s and a pair of 25x100s. The binocs I use the most often are the 15x70s. The 25x100 are great but they require a dedicated parallelogram mount that will add about another $300 to the bill (unless of course you build your own.)

    Binocs are great,
    JT
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