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Craig_

Ostara elinor / Strathspey ?

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I've just read a sky at night review on some 10x50 binoculars where the Ostara came out on top. Are these identical to the Strathspey Waterproof 10x50 ?

I read another post where Steve at the binocular sky says that they are the same binocular and he recommendeds them but that the strarths are not a true 50mm objective, possibly 44mm.

Are the Ostara objectives full 50mm which would maybe explain the higher cost, approximately £40, and therefor a better binocular overall and would the loss in objective size be noticed ?

Thanks in advance for your replies.

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I've just read a sky at night review on some 10x50 binoculars where the Ostara came out on top. Are these identical to the Strathspey Waterproof 10x50 ?

I read another post where Steve at the binocular sky says that they are the same binocular and he recommendeds them but that the strarths are not a true 50mm objective, possibly 44mm.

Are the Ostara objectives full 50mm ............. ?

I think they are the same as the Strathspey 10x50 WP.  

I have the Ostara Elinor 10x50's and have measured the external objective lens and it seems to be around 48mm.  I am unsure if there is anything internal along the light path that could step this aperture down further.  I am sure Steve @ Binocular sky would know more about what I own than me ! 

would the loss in objective size be noticed ?

I have never been able to compare them directly side by side with anything else.  However I can say I have managed to find Barnards Star with them !  

Thanks in advance for your replies.

No Problem ! 

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Speaking of Steve, have you tried his aperture measurement technique to find out whether the light path has been stopped down internally? http://binocularsky.com/binoc_aperture.php

I have found that, if possible, using contrasting paper and light source colours is helpful to see the precise shape.

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They are both United Optics BW7s. There is an assessment of the same binocular (branded "Leova") by the reliably excellent Holger Merlitz here, alongside the Leova version of the Strathspey Marine.

(Incidentally, when I reviewed the Marine a decade or so ago, I was unaware - as, I think, most of us were - of this "stopping down" practice. Mine are also stopped to 41mm. The most charitable way I can view this practice is "sharpening the image at the expense of some brightness". When I noticed that I could see about half a magnitude deeper in my 10x42 Opticrons, I assumed it was some weird vignetting effect - we were aware then that few binoculars had the full field 100% illuminated --  and other people tried to tell me that it was because my puipils didn't open enough or because I could hold the Opticrons more steadily. Little did we know...)

You asked:

would the loss in objective size be noticed ?

In a side-by-side comparison to a modern "true" 50mm, yes, easily. People have looked through my Oberwerk Ultra and expressed disbelief that it's a 10x50, -- not just because of the weight, but because the image is noticeably brighter than budget 10x50s, which, of course, are only 10x42 or smaller.

VisofSer asked:

have you tried his aperture measurement

I need to modify that page: I've simplified the process enormously. Just use the phone LED down the eyepiece and shine the output onto a bit of mm graph paper. If you want it accurately, mount the bino.

Edited by BinocularSky
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Thanks guys. Very informative.

still I can't decide between a £100 or a £160 binocular lol !

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Pentax 10x50 PCF WP II £159?         First Light Optics!

Opticron Imagic  TGA WP £159         First Light Optics!

Helios Naturesport-Plus 10x50  £79   First Light Optics!

Edited by Charic

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Lol. I have definitely spent too much time analising between makes and models of binoculars !

The imagics were my first recommended binocular but I just don't know if the extra £60 over other bins will make much difference to what I will see.

Incidentally, I have found some Nikon Action ex 10x50 at £99 which seem like a bit of a bargain. Yet another option !!!

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I tried the Nikons, didn't like them at all, just didn't fit properly ? I paid cheap too. NO UK Nikon warranty came with the ones I bought, careful where you buy from? Not only that, a non SgL member also tried them at his local store and came to the same conclusion about the fit? Either we have stranger than normal facets or I suggest you try them first!

Edited by Charic

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Thanks for the replies. I have just got back from Ibiza :sad: so was without internet for a bit, hence no response till now.

I tried the Nikons, didn't like them at all, just didn't fit properly ? I paid cheap too. NO UK Nikon warranty came with the ones I bought, careful where you buy from? Not only that, a non SgL member also tried them at his local store and came to the same conclusion about the fit? Either we have stranger than normal facets or I suggest you try them first!

The Nikons are on sale at Uttings so no problems there i think, but im not going to bother with them.

I decided to contact John at Strathspey and after a few emails im going to give the 7x50 marine version a go. John is really nice and most helpful with my questions and recommends the 7x over the 10x. If they are good bins then Im going to end up selling my apollos  :eek: and may well give the Strathspey giants a go  :grin:

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Is it true that Ostara Elinor and Strathspey WP 10x50 are literally United Optics BW7s? I was under the impression Strathspey manufactured their own products.

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Craig.......+1 about John. very helpful. I`m only a 50 minute drive away, and was planning a visit to see him, and check out some binoculars. I'm still undecided as to which brand I want, but they will be as close to 10x50 as possible (give or take some internal baffling?)

I have Bresser Hunter 7x50  Helios NSWA 8x40 and revelation 15x70. I prefer my 8x40s at present.

Uttings sound ok.

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Craig.......+1 about John. very helpful. I`m only a 50 minute drive away, and was planning a visit to see him, and check out some binoculars. I'm still undecided as to which brand I want, but they will be as close to 10x50 as possible (give or take some internal baffling?)

I have Bresser Hunter 7x50  Helios NSWA 8x40 and revelation 15x70. I prefer my 8x40s at present.

Uttings sound ok.

Seems i may have been mistaken regarding Uttings, or maybe they have put the price back up in the last 48 hrs ???

I think id be stupid to ignore the advice of John. So looks like i will get the 7x50. He says they are a far better option than the 10x for astronomy, and he should know i guess  :laugh:

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I've used 7x50s for years. Their a good option, but as BinocularSky points out, there are only a few things that really benefit 7x50s in the real world, regards astronomy. That is a few DSOs and ones ability to use the full 7.14mm exit pupil.  Younger folk can get the full use of the exit pupil,  but as we age, we can use less, physically. I find the 8x40s offer me a good  field of view and 5mm exit pupil. I'm sure they feel brighter than my older optics. Due to either me not being able to get the full benefit of the 7mm exit, or could just be better optics?  10x50 will offer a little more magnification, a slightly narrower field of view and a slightly better contrast between the dark sky and your target of interest. Not all 10x50s are actually x50 due to some internal baffling, which enhances the edges of your field of view. Sorry, but nothing is just so straight forward in this game. If you could try any branded optics in the size you want from a local store, to see their fit and comfort level, then decide on a brand you desire, then purchase, but trying before buying saves a lot of heartache.

Edited by Charic
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I find the 8x40s offer me a good  field of view and 5mm exit pupil. I'm sure they feel brighter than my older optics. Due to either me not being able to get the full benefit of the 7mm exit, or could just be better optics? Sorry, but nothing is just so straight forward in this game.

Then there is the fun of trying a borrowed pair of better bins at a star party and not being happy with the ones you have anymore. I think the best advice all around is as Charic says, find a store with as wide a range of bins as you can get to, try the lot in your budget and pick the best fit for you.

That or get a windfall and buy every single pair for a size and return the ones you do not like!

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 John is really nice and most helpful with my questions and recommends the 7x over the 10x. If they are good bins then Im going to end up selling my apollos  :eek: and may well give the Strathspey giants a go  :grin:

Agreed; John Burns is definitely one of the good guys in astro-retail.

However, re the Marines (aka United Optics BM2): they are actually a 41mm, so you'd be getting what is optically a 7x41; the exit pupil of just under 6mm may be very suitable for you. However, if you are going for a BM2, the 8x40 may be a better bet: AFAIK it is a true 40mm and is 300g (12oz) lighter than the "50"mm version (still a hefty beast, though).

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