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Binoculars

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Viewing 17 posts - 1 through 17 (of 27 total)
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  • #12682
    peter .h
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1509

    With the jump season coming up; i’ve got plenty of meetings i’m attending and was wondering if some of you could recomend some binocular’s for me? I’m not too fussed about the makes or anything like that, but what range etc would you recomend for a day at the races?

    #249373
    sberry
    Member
    • Total Posts 1800

    I’ve got a pocket pair of 8-13 zooms and to be honest they’re no better than adequate, however for choice you’d do well to beat this place: http://www.telescopesandbinoculars.co.u … index.html

    The main reason that place is in my favourites is because a couple of years ago when I bought a computer from multiple shops one of them tried to rip my card off and the only shop that rumbled them and stopped a lot of grief for me was Stockport Binoculars.

    The fact they went out their way to warn me someone was trying to play havoc with my money went down well, they can be trusted in my opinion.

    #249375
    peter .h
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1509

    That’s convenient; Stockport’s my home town. :D

    #249389
    sberry
    Member
    • Total Posts 1800

    I wish that luck would follow the horses I back, can’t seem to buy a result at the moment :lol:

    #249392
    apracing
    Participant
    • Total Posts 3326

    Peter,

    If you’re blessed with normal eyesight, then a pair of 10 x 50 bins is ideal. Ten times magnification with a good wide field of view.

    If like me you have to wear spectacles, then my personal preference is to remove them during the race and use a stronger magnification to compensate, so mine are 12 x 50.

    I have tried even bigger magnification in the past, but found that it was more difficult to get a clear view of the whole field with them. The ones with 20 times magnification are probably ideal for bird watchers and submarine captains, but too much for race reading.

    The other suggestion is to ensure they are waterproof against the inevitable rain.

    AP

    #249458
    Nickc
    Participant
    • Total Posts 62

    My opinion is worth a great deal less than AP’s, because I go racing far less often and do not watch the races with the care and attention he needs to employ. But, in my experience, it is quite difficult to hold the image steady if the binoculars have a magnification higher than 8. Also, while 10x and 12x bins may give larger images, they do not necessarily give clearer ones.

    If you wear specs, and do not want to take them off while using the bins, look for models with long eye reliefs – 17mm and above.

    #249469
    Drone
    Participant
    • Total Posts 5616

    I have a pair of 35 year old Zeiss Notarem 10×40 bins which suit me fine, though if you are to buy pair specifically for racing x50 would be advisable to increase viewing angle.

    They are of the ‘roof prism’ type which means both pairs of lenses are parallel to one another, hence are compact which I like.

    Made in the old East Germany and about £20 when bought. Now – like all Zeiss products – they cost a fortune.

    The point about higher magnifications causing image shake is well made though don’t find it a problem with 10x.

    Ebay have loads of binoculars for sale.

    caveat emptor

    of course

    #249471
    Adrian
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1041

    For years I used a pair I’d inherited from my grandfather. Good quality but too heavy really and I’d advise on a more modern pair.

    For the last few years I’ve been using the Canon ones which come with image stabilization. This is where you push a button on the top and it seems to freeze the picture. Worked quite well and the IS did help me to read the bookmakers boards from the stands or commentary box.

    However I had these stolen 18 months ago and replaced them with a pair of Pentax 10/50 which weren’t expensive at all.

    I did extensive research whilst in Kowloon (Hong Kong) where there are masses of shops. Most stocked the fashionable type with two parallel eye pieces. However the ones I chose were the classic old style of wide at the end, narrow at the eyepiece type. I was advised by some knowledgeable racing people that they were till best as they let in the most light. They have certainly worked great.

    #249475
    peter .h
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1509

    Oh, i best add that i’m a "trainee" commentator and am doing a couple point to points in jan/feb, so would i need specific binoculars for when i commentate or does it not make that much of a difference?

    I wear glasses, so it seems 12×50 is my best option…

    #249532
    Roddy Owen
    Participant
    • Total Posts 441

    Most racegoers I know gave up using binoculars some years ago, as we get a fantastic service on the TV these days.. I usually watch the start and maybe finish live and all of the race either on the nearest TV, or on the large screen if the course has one . Much better view than Bin`s. Doesn`t help in P to P of course.

    #249543
    Craig Braddick
    Member
    • Total Posts 373

    Notarems are indeed classic binoculars and have stood the test of time very well. Would use them in a heartbeat if my regular racecalling bins were not to hand.

    I am a big fan of Carl Zeiss. I used the East German 10×50 Dekarems for a long time but as I have arthritis in my hands found they got too heavy.

    I now use a pair of Zeiss 10×40’s. I know Lee McKenzie and Simon Holt use a pair and Lee convinced me to give them a try they are excellent for racecalling as they can be hand held easily.

    Personally, I would not recommend above 10X as they become harder to hold steady and for those who wear specs, fold down rubber eyecups are often a must.

    Also Zeiss Customer Service is excellent, I have just sent mine off for a yearly clean and check.

    A word of warning….Seek the older West German Zeiss or the even older East German Zeiss. The Victory and the COnquest lines by Zeiss are no longer all metal binoculars and have some very cheap plastic components beneath the casing. For binoculars that last a life time, the Zeiss, the Dialyt line for the West Germans and the DDR JEnoptems, Dekarems, Octarems are the way to go.

    Craig

    #249546
    robnorth
    Participant
    • Total Posts 6212

    It seems I’m in the minority, but I use a light pair of Pentax 10x25s which serve my purposes.

    #249559
    Drone
    Participant
    • Total Posts 5616

    Also Zeiss Customer Service is excellent, I have just sent mine off for a yearly clean and check.

    …and they still honour the lifetime guarantee on the East German models. A few years ago the focussing wheel stopped working and it was fixed free of charge along with a full service. Took about six weeks for them to be returned to me though. Presumably they went to Germany for repair.

    However the guarantee did not cover me when losing one of the rubber eye-cups, which cost around £50 for a new one and spare. Still it was at least good to know they still stock parts for these old models.

    Just had a gander at eBay and see that an example of the exact model I have together with the splendid leather carrying case is up for auction. £73 at the moment with two days left.

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll? … K:MEWAX:IT

    #249568
    Craig Braddick
    Member
    • Total Posts 373

    Also Zeiss Customer Service is excellent, I have just sent mine off for a yearly clean and check.

    …and they still honour the lifetime guarantee on the East German models. A few years ago the focussing wheel stopped working and it was fixed free of charge along with a full service. Took about six weeks for them to be returned to me though. Presumably they went to Germany for repair.

    However the guarantee did not cover me when losing one of the rubber eye-cups, which cost around £50 for a new one and spare. Still it was at least good to know they still stock parts for these old models.

    Just had a gander at eBay and see that an example of the exact model I have together with the splendid leather carrying case is up for auction. £73 at the moment with two days left.

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll? … K:MEWAX:IT

    Interesting, because in the USA they do not, one of the reasons that stopped me pulling the trigger.

    Craig

    #249655
    Drone
    Participant
    • Total Posts 5616

    Interesting, because in the USA they do not, one of the reasons that stopped me pulling the trigger.

    Should have added that being the anally retentive type I still have the proof of purchase receipt and factory-written guarantee.

    Without those I doubt they would have been fixed free of charge

    Likewise I doubt the guarantee extends to second-hand buys

    #249683
    Craig Braddick
    Member
    • Total Posts 373

    Actually my West Germans were second hand as they stopped making them about three years ago but they still sell used for roughly what they cost new and Zeiss honor them with no problem.

    Craig

    #249692
    peter .h
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1509

    I’ve got a pair on hold at a local camera shop. They’re a German Zeiss and are 8×30… would you say that’s too small or just about right?

Viewing 17 posts - 1 through 17 (of 27 total)
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