Best all purpose bino size

COlineman78

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I currently have cheap 10x42 Nikons and am thinking about upgrading to some Viper HDs, but am debating between staying with 10x42 or going up to 10x50 or 12x50. I would like to have a single all-purpose bino that is great off hand for counting points at 100 yards or picking apart a hillside off a tripod 2000 yards away. Anyone with experience with multiple sizes with some insight. I run my binos in a AGC CUB, so I don't think additional bulk will bother me much.
 

warrior80

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Jun 24, 2014
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Layton, UT
I currently have cheap 10x42 Nikons and am thinking about upgrading to some Viper HDs, but am debating between staying with 10x42 or going up to 10x50 or 12x50. I would like to have a single all-purpose bino that is great off hand for counting points at 100 yards or picking apart a hillside off a tripod 2000 yards away. Anyone with experience with multiple sizes with some insight. I run my binos in a AGC CUB, so I don't think additional bulk will bother me much.
I changed from 10x42 to 10x50 and I like the 50 better. They are definitely brighter. I have also tried 12x50 and they are nice too. I think the 10x50 is a nice size and gives you the largest exit pupil. But I am no optics expert. I just liked looking through the larger objective glass better.

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Molon Labe

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10x42 are the best all around for me. I don't really see the advantage in going to a 50mm bell because most people don't have an exit eye over 4.2 anyway. So that 5mm exit eye that you get from 10x50s isn't really that important.
 

Beendare

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A consnsus on "best".. I know I'm not the only one snickering on that question

I have 8x, 10x and 15's.... each have their place. If i could only have one ( heaven forbid!) probably the 10's
 

5MilesBack

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Best all-around would be 10's IMO. But something along the lines of some Swaro 12's would be pretty sweet as well. I wouldn't do anything more than 10's in any of the lesser brands.
 

wind gypsy

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I wouldn't want more than 10s for hand held glassing. At the viper price point I'd look into the Nikon monarch 7s too.
 

Brian Fahs

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Feb 25, 2014
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Swaro or leica 10x if you can only have one......
Good glass is like Pringle potato chips to me. CAN'T have just one!
Make sure you get a descent tripod and mount. game changer for sure.
 

missjordan

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Missoula, MT
10x42s, I second the Nikon Monarchs as well for another option to check out as well


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elkguide

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I "need" multiple binoculars but if I were to be left with just one, no question.......... 10X42 Swarovskis.

In a lesser glass, the distortion and light dispersal would make me lean towards 8X
but the Swaro 10's do everything quite well for me and my eyes.
 

AGPank

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Jan 16, 2013
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For my hunting style I would take an 8x42 as my one and only. I like the wider FOV and low light performance. Where I hunt most viewing is under 1000 yards and most is in heavier timber.

That being said this year I have 8x32, 10x42, and 12x50's.

I would vote for a high quality 10x42 for what you described for a single optic. From my families cabin I can view out to about 1.5 miles. The 10's are much better than 8s for the longer views, but neither am I counting points on Bulls at that distance.

I started with 10x50 viper hd years ago and they had a very narrow FOV (270'), most high quality 10x42 will be 330' FOV. I didn't like that narrow viewing experience.

Shop around and get behind some different glass. I think there is better glass at the Viper HD price point (especially if you can save a couple hundred more and find a Meostar or Conquest Hd used or demo)
 

Thumper

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May 10, 2017
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Idaho
I recently was looking for Binos. When I went in, the sales man insisted I look at Nikon Monarch , He swore by them. We got a pair of Vipers, Leupold BX3 Mojave Pro Guide HD, and the Nikon. We went outside and tested, we all agreed that the the Leupold were by far the best. A few days later we went to another store and tested the Leupold 10x42 Pro Guide HD and the Vortex Razor 10 x 50 We were amazed at how there was not much of a difference in clarity between the Razor and the ProGuide HD. Not $700.00 anyway. We stopped by another store on the way home and found the old style of Leupolds on Close out prices... Just so happened that they had a close out price on the new style HD 10 x 42. The price was suppose to be 569.00 and we paid 330.00. When I realized it I tried to return them and they said no that I got a good deal that day. Yay for them! We actually need a his and hers pair of bino's . so I looked on line and found a pair of 12 x 50 for 499.99 at a photo web site. The 10 x 42 were 20.00 less. Got the 12 x 50's. Today we compared the two at home. While I found the 12x50s brought the item in closer and was a bit bigger. I was more steady with the 10 x 42. I did not notice more light coming in the 12 x 50s . The heat vapors were a hair larger in the 12 x 50's. The 12 x 50s were a mere 4 oz heavier than the 10 x 42's and about an inch taller. I put them in my Alaska Creations bino bag and they fit well, a little spare room on the side of the bino. I also put my Springfield EMP 9mm in the pouch on the back side of the bag. While the zipper did not zip, It was not uncomfortable at all. I was able to get both the Leupold or EMP out with out disturbing the other. Anyway.... When you are checking out the Leupolds.. Make sure you look thru the HD version of the Mojave. It is the newer style, the old style is not as good. It will say HD on the Round thing in the center of the Bino's. Accordign the the guy and Leupold, they are Renaming the Moave Pro Guide HD to BAK 4 HD... He said it is the same bino just a new shorter name.

Hope this helps! ;)
 
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