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Old 11-21-2017, 11:11 AM   #81
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But weren't 7x50 the staple simply because that was the maximum magnification you could hold by hand ? If stabilization was available decades ago, I imagine the "staple" would have been higher powered.
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Old 11-21-2017, 11:22 AM   #82
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One more option for the OP if you decide you don't need stabilized, and i think i got this website from another TF post a long time ago. theres a site called "Steep and Cheap" that seems to have significant discounts on actual brands that appear to be legit, for example they have some Steinar deals right now that seem cheap, just a thought...
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Old 11-21-2017, 11:32 AM   #83
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It's pretty simple, 7X helps you find the marker, stabilized 12X lets you read the number on the marker.
One can argue that real navigators dont find out where they are, they confirm where they are and the number becomes less important when it is the right color in the right location.

The 7x light gathering lets me see in the dark better to see unlit things better than 12x...again unless they are giants or special, costly design.
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Old 11-21-2017, 11:38 AM   #84
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But weren't 7x50 the staple simply because that was the maximum magnification you could hold by hand ? If stabilization was available decades ago, I imagine the "staple" would have been higher powered.
Not really, on larger warships they had much larger mounted binocs.

The bridge crews wound up with the best general purpose binoc.

Sure more magnification is better for some things, but magnification also decreases field of view as well as light gathering.

Tradeoffs.....steady hands and how steady the deck is is always a variable.

As I said, one is good enough, yet 8X is almost 12 percent better than 7X and stabilized.

What do you give up by going higher?
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Old 11-21-2017, 11:40 AM   #85
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I use a pair of 6x something backpack size. That way I can quickly one hand them. Wife uses a the 7x50s (plus zoom) if we need better magnification.
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Old 11-21-2017, 03:13 PM   #86
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It's pretty simple, 7X helps you find the marker, stabilized 12X lets you read the number on the marker.
This is a great description.

I had great experience with my Canon stabilization. I really liked it and it performed and survived for a couple decades being used on my sailboats. Most of the time it was all I could ever want.

However there are times, usually coming into an unfamiliar marina, when I want to be able to read the markers or signs. The 14x40 Fuji does that great. For a quick grab and look, the Canon is more convenient and lightweight.

The issues mentioned above about eye relief is very important for those wearing glasses.
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Old 11-21-2017, 04:42 PM   #87
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Is the 8x42 a good compromise between mag & light gathering?
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Old 11-21-2017, 04:57 PM   #88
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Why do you feel 8 power isnt enough?

Sure 100 power would be enough....maybe?

Fot decades 7x50s were good enough for navigation uses, stabilization made them better...

At some point all the goodiesvwe buy for boats reach a tipping point to where we get great use out of an item 90 percent of the time. Do we really need to keep throwing money at the other 10 percent if there is no direct return on it?

Its not like addind another alarm on the engine that might prevent seripus damage...this is seing somwthing clearer o.oor bigger or whatever way past the real need to know. Nice but not critical.
The answer is yes if that's how one chooses to spend his money for that extra bit of utility. Value is in the eye of the beholder. We have a pair of Fujinon 7 x 50's and a pair of Fuji Tecnho Stabi 14x. We like them both depending on the situation. Sure, one could get along just fine with 7 x 50's but why do so if one sees value in having both and is willing to pay the price?
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Old 11-21-2017, 06:31 PM   #89
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My real point is you can keep going up that list from a great pair of binocs that most yachtsmen would have killed for pretty much my whole life for around $300.... or just keep thinking you are getting a bit more utility right up every rung of the ladder till you spend over $5000.

Sure pay whatever you want, but like many navigation systems on a boat, way iverkill for what the boat owner is getting out of them.

I am just suggesting critical thinking of what you are really gonna get out of them for the money.
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Old 11-21-2017, 07:28 PM   #90
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My real point is you can keep going up that list from a great pair of binocs that most yachtsmen would have killed for pretty much my whole life for around $300.... or just keep thinking you are getting a bit more utility right up every rung of the ladder till you spend over $5000.

Sure pay whatever you want, but like many navigation systems on a boat, way iverkill for what the boat owner is getting out of them.

I am just suggesting critical thinking of what you are really gonna get out of them for the money.
Fair enough!
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Old 11-21-2017, 07:34 PM   #91
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Not sure if this will help but I bought a 7x50 Steiner Marine II with a lighted stabilized compass from West Marine. Price??? I have a tendency to forget the price of those items for which I think I paid too much.
If you look up the price, please don't tell me, I want to remain content in my ignorance.
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Old 11-21-2017, 08:33 PM   #92
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We have both a 7X50 and a 12 power stabilized Nikons. Last year the stabilized Nikons were the most valuable tool on board during our trip home from Virginia, with the possible exception of the auto pilot. At first we took both sets of binoculars up to the flybridge. After 2 days we only took up the Nikons. We were not cruising at night so light gathering was simply not an issue. I wonder how many people actually go out at night. We do for the CG Aux, but we have the 7X50s if needed. We used the stabilized to pick up crab pots in the Chesapeak and they were great for reading bouys. I would never go back...
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Old 11-21-2017, 08:59 PM   #93
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The light gathering is helpful at anchor to check on other boats and shorelines for ranges.

Sure you can run radar all night .....I prefer not to...

And then there are those times where you dont plan on being out at night but delays can put you coming in when light gathering is a help.

I would love a pair of stabilized, but just havent felt the need. I have experience with them going back all the way to the early 80s. Fujinon sent USCG Air Station Miami a couple prototype sets for use and review during the Mariel Boatlift.

While handy, I guess I have enough workarounds to get by without stabilization, but they are great if you want to spend the bucks.
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Old 11-23-2017, 07:48 AM   #94
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But weren't 7x50 the staple simply because that was the maximum magnification you could hold by hand ? If stabilization was available decades ago, I imagine the "staple" would have been higher powered.
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Is the 8x42 a good compromise between mag & light gathering?

Aside from physical size and weight... another reason 7x50 became a standard of sorts is that the (young) human eyeball pupil maxes out at about 7mm in full drakness... and the ocular lens on 7x50s is... you guessed it 7mm.

That could mean that 7x50s will "gather"more light (allow more light to flow through)... but then all of that can also be affected by lens quality, the quality of the coatings, design (porro or roof prism), eye relief, etc. Comparing equals, 7x50 usually wins (technically) at night. But a high-end 8x42 could well be better than a low-end 7x50.

And then 8x42s usually don't weigh as much, aren't as bulky, etc.

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Old 11-23-2017, 05:50 PM   #95
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Steiner navigator w/integral ilum sighting compass
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Old 11-23-2017, 05:56 PM   #96
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Steiner navigator w/integral ilum sighting compass
I have a set and discovered, one can get more light if one removes the lens covers.
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Old 11-23-2017, 07:43 PM   #97
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Aside from physical size and weight... another reason 7x50 became a standard of sorts is that the (young) human eyeball pupil maxes out at about 7mm in full drakness... and the ocular lens on 7x50s is... you guessed it 7mm.

That could mean that 7x50s will "gather"more light (allow more light to flow through)... but then all of that can also be affected by lens quality, the quality of the coatings, design (porro or roof prism), eye relief, etc. Comparing equals, 7x50 usually wins (technically) at night. But a high-end 8x42 could well be better than a low-end 7x50.

And then 8x42s usually don't weigh as much, aren't as bulky, etc.

-Chris
It sounds like you are referencing exit pupil which is really the point when discussing the amount of light which reaches your eye through a pair of binoculars. Exit pupil is calculated by objective lens / ocular lens measurements, thus your example of 7x50 = 7.1mm exit pupil. 8x42 has an exit pupil of 5.25mm, much smaller than 7x50, which can make a huge difference...only if the person's eyes are capable of making use of the extra light.

A healthy (and likely young) human eye pupil can dilate to 7mm or higher but as we age that changes. If you eye can only dilate to 5mm you won't notice the difference in 'brightness' between the two.

It's not just the size of the ocular lens that is at the heart of the issue.
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Old 11-24-2017, 06:26 AM   #98
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It sounds like you are referencing exit pupil which is really the point when discussing the amount of light which reaches your eye through a pair of binoculars. Exit pupil is calculated by objective lens / ocular lens measurements, thus your example of 7x50 = 7.1mm exit pupil. 8x42 has an exit pupil of 5.25mm, much smaller than 7x50, which can make a huge difference...only if the person's eyes are capable of making use of the extra light.

A healthy (and likely young) human eye pupil can dilate to 7mm or higher but as we age that changes. If you eye can only dilate to 5mm you won't notice the difference in 'brightness' between the two.

It's not just the size of the ocular lens that is at the heart of the issue.

Yep, I mis-spoke, meant exit pupil, not ocular lens... thanks for correction.

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Old 12-06-2017, 03:12 PM   #99
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After reading this post again....
I've come up with two good offerings from BH Photo.

Canon 10x30 IS II Image Stab
Price: $549.99 list You Pay: $469.99
Fujinon 12x32 Techno-Stabi JR Image Stabilized
Price: $799.95 You Pay: $499.95

Both pretty close, Fujinon seems a tad better quality with a tad less in the customer service area, and it's a bit heavier.

I'm leaning toward better CS, with a bit less performance and less of a discount. Thoughts?

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Old 12-06-2017, 04:09 PM   #100
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I have a big, heavy Fujinon marine binoc that gathers light like there's no tomorrow. When SabreWife uses them she always marvels at how bright everything looks.

But they're huge.

So, after much research, I got her a pair of Nikon Monarch 5 that are 8x42. They're waterproof, too. What she primarily uses them for is to look at birds and other wildlife, so the bit of extra magnification is welcome. She very much appreciates the size and weight, both a fraction of the clunky Fujinon, so that means that she can carry them when out on walks and therefore uses them a lot more than she would if they were bigger.

Stabilization would be nice, but it comes at a price (weight as well as $$). She doesn't tend to use them when the seas are lumpy, so I don't think it would be worth the penalty to get a stabilized pair.

YMMV.
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