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Vortex Crossfire 10x50 vs 12x50


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Hi all.  Looking at getting some decent binos. I’ve looked at one or two Top 10-type lists, and the Vortex Crossfire seems to be quite well regarded. I have looked at some other makes, Pentax, Nikon etc, but am looking to get something that is actually available to purchase now. As with telescopes, the current stock lists are a barren wasteland. But the Vortex I can get my hands on.

So, there is only a tenner difference between 10x50’s and 12x50’s. I realise that the 12’s are going to put me into “shaky hands” territory, but intend to use a tripod anyhow. Which do you think I should go for? Oh, and there is also the possibility of stumping up a bit more and going for the next model up, the Diamondback. Any thoughts?

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The Diamondbacks turned up early this morning. My initial reaction, when I saw how small the box appeared to be, was that they had sent me the binos without the Glass Case, so I was already on the bac

Debating session over. Just ordered the Vortex Diamondback 10x50’s. Hopefully here on Wednesday

Thanks @cupton. I read a few reviews, and they did say that there was very little difference between the two, with the DB’s being marginally better. I’m hopefully only buying once, so decided to push

I would certainly go for the 10x50. These would allow quick hand-held sessions much more readily than 12x50s do. Now I can hold my Helios LightQuest 16x80 bins quite well without support, but that is rare. I do have a monopod, and even a P-mount. However, I rarely use them in practice, as they take just that bit longer to set up, and restrict your freedom of movement a bit.

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I have a pair of Vortex Crossfire 10x50s that I use for quick grab 'n' go while I'm imaging. Very good they are too.

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@DaveS Thanks Dave. That’s reassuring to know. Just currently debating whether it’s worth throwing in a little extra to go for the Diamondbacks or not.

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Debating session over. Just ordered the Vortex Diamondback 10x50’s. Hopefully here on Wednesday :)

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I have the Diamondback HD 10x50's and an older pair of Diamondback 10x42's and I absolutely love them both. That being said, I wouldnt hesitate to pick up the Crossfires if thats all that my budget allowed. I've only looked through a pair of Crossfires once while at the store but they were a nice pair. I cant remember which model they were, but if I was looking for some new binos and the Crossfires were the bino's in question, I wouldn't hesitate to buy them.

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2 minutes ago, Ande said:

Debating session over. Just ordered the Vortex Diamondback 10x50’s. Hopefully here on Wednesday :)

Well there you go. I posted too late.  ;)   Glad you ordered a pair. I think you'll be happy with what you ordered.

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1 minute ago, cupton said:

I have the Diamondback HD 10x50's and an older pair of Diamondback 10x42's and I absolutely love them both. That being said, I wouldnt hesitate to pick up the Crossfires if thats all that my budget allowed. I've only looked through a pair of Crossfires once while at the store but they were a nice pair. I cant remember which model they were, but if I was looking for some new binos and the Crossfires were the bino's in question, I wouldn't hesitate to buy them.

Thanks @cupton. I read a few reviews, and they did say that there was very little difference between the two, with the DB’s being marginally better. I’m hopefully only buying once, so decided to push the boat out a bit. Really good to hear that you rate yours so highly.

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I think 10x50 is a good choice and going for the better quality option with the "only buy once" approach is also a good idea where you can afford it. It means you can focus in enjoying your kit rather than being distracted by wondering if you're missing out.

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i have the vortex diamondbacks 10x50, stonking bins.

fitting a tripod adaptor is a pain though. not sure if i bought the right one though

Edited by faulksy
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Funnily enough i had the choice to buy 10x50 or 12x50 Nikon action ex bins and i got the 12x50

Later on i got the 10x50 Opticron I Magic 10x50 but my grab n go bins whether handheld or on tripod/monopod are my 12x50's they are  heavier than the 10x50 but i just feel they are better all round bins 🍻

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41 minutes ago, faulksy said:

i have the vortex diamondbacks 10x50, stonking bins.

fitting a tripod adaptor is a pain though. not sure if i bought the right one though

I need to source a tripod adapter. Great to hear that you like the binos though.

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40 minutes ago, Stormbringer said:

Funnily enough i had the choice to buy 10x50 or 12x50 Nikon action ex bins and i got the 12x50

Later on i got the 10x50 Opticron I Magic 10x50 but my grab n go bins whether handheld or on tripod/monopod are my 12x50's they are  heavier than the 10x50 but i just feel they are better all round bins 🍻

I very nearly went there 😀

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@Stormbringer Thanks Alan. I can’t wait to get hold of them. I actually bought a set of real cheapos off Amazon not long ago, that are surprisingly good for daylight/terrestrial use, but struggle to pick up as many stars as I would like. I look forward to seeing what the Vectors can bring to the party.

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Posted (edited)

The Diamondbacks turned up early this morning. My initial reaction, when I saw how small the box appeared to be, was that they had sent me the binos without the Glass Case, so I was already on the back-foot. Then, upon opening the box, I was relieved to see the case. Opening the case again shocked me, as the binos looked a lot smaller than I had envisaged. Then, upon picking them up and opening them to their widest, I was further dismayed. No way would they accommodate my IPD. 

So, imagine my delight when I actually took them outside, adjusted the IPD and diopter, and then scanned around. Wonderful clarity, and a lovely, bright image. Well, bright given the fact that it is grey and snowing 😀. I think my IPD concerns were spawned because of the non-traditional design of the barrels running so close to each other throughout their length.  It made the eyepieces look so close together. I am more accustomed to the old-fashioned style binos that stagger out. The zoom feels lovely and smooth, and they feel great in the hand. The small form factor is a complete non-issue, in fact, quite the opposite. Who wants great big, clunky things? Also, very surprised at how close up they can focus. I had them down to about 5-6’ and was totally blown away at the image.

So, it looks like I have some keepers. Thanks to all who chipped in. Much appreciated :)

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Glad you got them and the initial impressions are good. like I said, I really enjoy mine. I have multiple Vortex products and I am a very satisfied customer. Enjoy!!! Now you just need to wait out the cloud cover. Or you can do what I do in the meantime and zoom in on the dog, the plants on the shelf, the children sitting in the chair next to you just so you can creep them out. ;) 

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1 hour ago, cupton said:

Glad you got them and the initial impressions are good. like I said, I really enjoy mine. I have multiple Vortex products and I am a very satisfied customer. Enjoy!!! Now you just need to wait out the cloud cover. Or you can do what I do in the meantime and zoom in on the dog, the plants on the shelf, the children sitting in the chair next to you just so you can creep them out. ;) 

Any excuse, eh? 😀 I had to follow my housemate to the MOT station then wait forever on Tesco’s car park while they got sorted out. I had my binos with me, and was sorely tempted to while away the time by having a good scan around. But then thought how suspect, and pervy it might appear, so I had to suppress the notion 😂. It’s been a wonderful, blue sky day here for the most part, and I’ve been counting down the hours until dark, but then the clouds moved in at dusk in a somewhat typical fashion. Back to the waiting game again.

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On 04/01/2021 at 21:36, Ande said:

I need to source a tripod adapter. Great to hear that you like the binos though.

Make sure you get one of the narrow ones - there's not a lot of space between those 50mm barrels. In fact, I find it a right fiddle to screw an adaptor into any 50mm roofs - maybe I'm just all thumbs... 🙂

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, BinocularSky said:

Make sure you get one of the narrow ones - there's not a lot of space between those 50mm barrels. In fact, I find it a right fiddle to screw an adaptor into any 50mm roofs - maybe I'm just all thumbs... 🙂

I had the proper Vortex tripod adapter delivered this morning. Yes, it is unbelievably fiddly and awkward. Not very impressed with the design of it at all to be honest. It is very difficult to be able to apply enough torque to get a nice, solid fit. I’ll probably leave it on the binos permanently, unless I’m going out in the woods or something, then I’ll remove it. 

Edited by Ande
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On 04/01/2021 at 16:11, Ande said:

Just ordered the Vortex Diamondback 10x50’s.

Lovely binos. Just in case you're interested, Diamondbacks (usually 10x42) are a firm favourite with some South African game wardens, because of their optical/mechaincal quality and their ruggedness (and, I guess, the transferrable lifetime guarantee) .

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2 minutes ago, BinocularSky said:

Lovely binos. Just in case you're interested, Diamondbacks (usually 10x42) are a firm favourite with some South African game wardens, because of their optical/mechaincal quality and their ruggedness (and, I guess, the transferrable lifetime guarantee) .

I suppose it is quite a dangerous job.

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