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RMCprime

Which binoculars, 10x42 or 10x50 roof prism?

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Posted (edited)

I've been trying to get into astronomy for about the last 10 years, I've researched the gear many a time but I've never been able to pull the trigger as its always had to sit lower on the list of priorities. Now it's finally time to get some kit, so while I figure out what telescope setup I need I thought I'd get some binoculars and start observing. I tested out several binoculars today and of what was available in store I found the Nikon Monarch 5 10x42 to be the best in my price range (perhaps they decided my price range). 

How would the likes of the Nikon Monarch 5 10x42 compare to say a Vixen New Foresta 10x42?

There are also the Vixen New Foresta 10x50, Hawke Endurance ED 10x50 and Vortex Diamondback 10x50 which have roof prisms fall in my price range. Is there any point moving up to this lens diameter? The size/weight increase isn't a concern and I like the idea of the increased exit pupil and light.

Thanks,

R

Edited by RMCprime

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I use Hawk Endurance 10 x 50 bins, excellent view and crystal clear. Highly recommended for bird watching too!

Ron

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Thanks, I've read a lot of material in the past few days. I think if I go the 10x42 roof prism route then I will stick with  the Nikon Monarch 5.

The only thing that's holding me back is the possibility of a 10x50 roof prism binocular improving my viewing experience.  The Hawke Endurance ED 10x50 and Vortex Diamondback 10x50 or Bushnell Engage 10x50 look quite good, but ive not been able to do a back to back test.

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I just tried out the Hawke Endurance ED 10x42 and 10x50. I found the 10x50 much brighter, and I preferred the Hawke 10x50 over than the Nikon Monarch 5 10x42.

So I think I will definitely go with a 10x50. But now I really want to compare the Hawke against the Bushnell Engage 10x50 as they have the ED glass where the Vortex Diamond back does not.

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I won't get into the prism type and maker A vs maker B discussion. Or the resultant exit pupil discussion.

But as someone with long term chronic aperture fever in the scope dept, I would look at 50mm objectives.

Generally 50mm binos are not too heavy or bulky and give brighter views - or let you see dimmer objects.

David.

 

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I carry my Monarch 8x42s on my daily walks [up to a couple of hours] and find I don't ever notice the weight.
Trying to carry my 50mm, or larger binoculars, soon gets both tiring and boring regardless of using wide straps.
So they stay at home or in the car boot.
Binoculars should provide pinpoint star images right across the field of view. Good luck with that!

For astronomy you won't need to carry the binoculars far. So bigger is better.
I rest my elbows on the car sometimes but this severely limits the altitude I can view.
So think in terms of a sun lounger and possibly make or buy a parallelogram support.
A sun lounger with arm rests can take a crossbar for your elbows to rest on while you lie down and look up.
Tripods and pan-tilt heads just get in the way beyond a certain altitude and are a literal pain in the neck. So don't bother.

Unless you have very dark skies you'll soon want much more than a pair of binoculars for astronomy.
A smallish refractor with a star diagonal for comfort would be a good first choice.
A 90-100mm refractor is a nice instrument. My long, Vixen 90mm offers sharp and bright views and is satisfying on the Moon and brighter planets.

Don't ignore the secondhand market for a suitable refactor just to dip your toes in the hobby.
You could buy an OTA [complete telescope tube or Optical Tube Assembly] and put it on a DIY altazimuth fork mounting.
Made of plywood, with plastic pipe, trunnion bearings, just like a cannon. You put the fork pivot on a firm wooden post or pipe in the garden.

Such a simple and steady mounting will be much more fun than an using a wobbly, equatorial mounting on an equally wobbly tripod.
Most people think they need an equatorial mounting to be serious. They don't. The equatorial mounting just gets in their way.
Even rich people put gorgeous telescopes worth tens of thousands of £/$/Euros on simple, plywood forks for the amazing stability they offer.
Perhaps that's how they can afford their amazing telescopes? Instead of constantly upgrading equatorial mountings. :)

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4 hours ago, Rusted said:

I carry my Monarch 8x42s on my daily walks [up to a couple of hours] and find I don't ever notice the weight.
Trying to carry my 50mm, or larger binoculars, soon gets both tiring and boring regardless of using wide straps.
So they stay at home or in the car boot.
Binoculars should provide pinpoint star images right across the field of view. Good luck with that!

For astronomy you won't need to carry the binoculars far. So bigger is better.
I rest my elbows on the car sometimes but this severely limits the altitude I can view.
So think in terms of a sun lounger and possibly make or buy a parallelogram support.
A sun lounger with arm rests can take a crossbar for your elbows to rest on while you lie down and look up.
Tripods and pan-tilt heads just get in the way beyond a certain altitude and are a literal pain in the neck. So don't bother.

Unless you have very dark skies you'll soon want much more than a pair of binoculars for astronomy.
A smallish refractor with a star diagonal for comfort would be a good first choice.
A 90-100mm refractor is a nice instrument. My long, Vixen 90mm offers sharp and bright views and is satisfying on the Moon and brighter planets.

Don't ignore the secondhand market for a suitable refactor just to dip your toes in the hobby.
You could buy an OTA [complete telescope tube or Optical Tube Assembly] and put it on a DIY altazimuth fork mounting.
Made of plywood, with plastic pipe, trunnion bearings, just like a cannon. You put the fork pivot on a firm wooden post or pipe in the garden.

Such a simple and steady mounting will be much more fun than an using a wobbly, equatorial mounting on an equally wobbly tripod.
Most people think they need an equatorial mounting to be serious. They don't. The equatorial mounting just gets in their way.
Even rich people put gorgeous telescopes worth tens of thousands of £/$/Euros on simple, plywood forks for the amazing stability they offer.
Perhaps that's how they can afford their amazing telescopes? Instead of constantly upgrading equatorial mountings. :)

Lots of good points here. However, since my somewhat extravagent assortment of kit is the means by which I make my living, I can excuse myself from being part of the 'rich people!' I like 8x42 bins best for hand holding. I don't want to hold 10x any more, though I used to. I feel I lose more to the jitters than I gain from the image scale. Once I want 15x I can use a short FL scope and a widefield EP on a nice manual alt-az (agree with you there, too.)

And, yes, the wooden Dobsonian-style mount is an absolute dream. I have an 8 inch F4 Newt which I keep meaning to turn into a small rich field Dob. Alas, I have other projects, too, like tidying my office... The Dob would be much easier.

:Dlly

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Hi Olly

Tidiness is the work of the devil and must be avoided at all costs! :unsure:

"Rich" is a relative term. It must be nice to have rich relatives. :wink2:

The "humble" plywood, offset fork is a superb refractor mounting.
Particularly for those with long and heavy instruments or no money.
These are otherwise impossible to mount well without a second mortgage. 
Or having a hideous collection of scrap metal leaning against the workshop wall "just in case." :blush:

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