Experienced advice needed

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neanderpaul420

neanderpaul420

Junior Member
Joined
May 15, 2019
Messages
14
Location
Forest Grove, OR
Me personally I own a Meopta/Cabelas Euro HD. Got it for steal out of the bargain cave, so cant complain there. I had a Vortex Viper before(as I had Vortex binoculars before). At some point in the future I will likely add a more compact spotter to the mix... it might be a Kowa, or I might just go cheap and find a used Nikon fieldscope.

It was when I started shopping around for a better pair of binoculars that I noticed that at nearly every price point there was better glass to be had from other manufacturers... and other manufacturers warranties are similar. I don't think many of them will cover your product if its burnt up in a house fire or some crap... but then again, thats what homeowners/renters insurance is for. You're going to find guys who have had no issues with them, but you're just as likely to find people who have(me included. viper spotter had to go back because fine focus stopped working, had a viper scope the parallax didn't work on)... and while I was lucky enough to experience these when it didn't matter, what are the chances you're on a hunt - money you've spent in gas and prep, PTO spent, etc only to need your VIP warranty? Thats not a risk I'm willing to take. This also isn't to say Vortex doesn't have decent glass either - its just overpriced(likely because of warranty) in my experience. Sorry for the long winded explanation - I just don't want you to think I'm blindly "hating" on something for no reason.

With that said, I'd do a search of everything in your price range and make an effort to check it out. That Ares looks pretty sweet for the price, and if it compares favorably to Razor(and it should considering that line is overpriced) you'd be looking at a pretty sweet deal... probably be even sweeter if you called that Doug guy. I have no affiliation with them for the record - I've only dealt with them once but they did me right.
Jeff, thank you very much! I truly appreciate all the info!
 

willfrye027

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2018
Messages
389
Might want to consider kowa as well. They are light for size and good glass for the money. I picked up a used 602 on eBay for about $400. Weighs 33oz and usable at 60x if the lighting is decent. Great in between optic spanning the ultra light stuff and the heavier full sized options.
 

blsch72

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Joined
Nov 10, 2018
Messages
56
I know these scopes aren't ones you are looking at, but Leopold has the same warranty and Vortex but with a bit better track record. And Swarovski is only a few hundred more than a razor for significantly better glass. It's much more light and durable as well.

Alzo, spend the extra money now and buy top of the line so you don't have to upgrade later.

As far as tripods go, I really like manfrotto. They are light but very tough. Definitely on the pricier end, but it's worth it for quality. I have seen dudes put them through hell and they hold up.

I personally like straight spotting scopes. But its personal preference. Angled is good because the height settings are more forgiving. It's easier for someone to walk up and look through. Straight, you have to set to your specific height. But I like it a bit better.

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JBivens

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Joined
Mar 8, 2014
Messages
25
I started with Steiner 10X42’s. Great Glass. Then added a 65MM spotter.
I currently run 12x50 EL’s. Most of the time that is perfect. I tried the 15x56 but they don’t work for me unless I have them on a tripod. I prefer to have my glass on my chest or pack and not utilize my tripod unless I am set up for awhile. Glass on treking poles works pretty well.
 

JBivens

Junior Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2014
Messages
25
I run a gitzo carbon tripod with a manfrotto fluid head. I make some concession because the head is heavy, but I think its worth every ounce. I have to agree with the guys who say buy the best glass you can afford.
 
OP
neanderpaul420

neanderpaul420

Junior Member
Joined
May 15, 2019
Messages
14
Location
Forest Grove, OR
I run a gitzo carbon tripod with a manfrotto fluid head. I make some concession because the head is heavy, but I think its worth every ounce. I have to agree with the guys who say buy the best glass you can afford.
JBivins, I also have a pair of Steiner 10x42's! I actually have already ordered the Athlon Midas 12x50 binocs and the Promaster XC525C tripod with the spvh(?) fluid head. I'm going to hold off on a scope, for now. I want to use the binoc/tripod combo for a season, so I have a better idea what I want. Thanks for your input!
 

BRTreedogs

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Joined
Nov 16, 2017
Messages
797
Location
OR
Do you travel for hunting?
I grew up in nw Or and can't imagine you needing a spotting scope.
I hear great things about Maven, and then ones I looked they at the show seemed legit.
 
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neanderpaul420

neanderpaul420

Junior Member
Joined
May 15, 2019
Messages
14
Location
Forest Grove, OR
Do you travel for hunting?
I grew up in nw Or and can't imagine you needing a spotting scope.
I hear great things about Maven, and then ones I looked they at the show seemed legit.
BRTreedogs, no I don't travel, which is why I decided to start with 12x binocs and a tripod. You grew up in NW, I'm jealous! Lol I've been in Forest Grove for 4 years, and am still looking for a good place. I guess that I should add, hunting deer and elk in NW Oregon is unlike any hunting I've ever done! I'm really still trying to learn the ropes out here.
 

BRTreedogs

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Nov 16, 2017
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797
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BRTreedogs, no I don't travel, which is why I decided to start with 12x binocs and a tripod. You grew up in NW, I'm jealous! Lol I've been in Forest Grove for 4 years, and am still looking for a good place. I guess that I should add, hunting deer and elk in NW Oregon is unlike any hunting I've ever done! I'm really still trying to learn the ropes out here.
Maven makes an 11x45 bino.
But my suggestion would be to save the money on a spotter and buy some quality binos that will last a lifetime.
 

BRTreedogs

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Nov 16, 2017
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797
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Thanks, BRTreedogs! I actually ordered a pair of Athlon Midas 12x50 binocs and a nice tripod from cameraland.
Sweet,
I need to order one of those carbon tripods to save some weight.
But just not sure it's in the budget this year.
 

ianpadron

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 3, 2016
Messages
802
Between the two mentioned, Razor 100%.

I upgraded from the Viper within the first year.

That being said, I'd shop around and pony up for a used KOWA 663/664 or Swaro 65 ATS if I had to do it all over again.

The Razor falls apart past 40x or so. I like how light the Gen. 1 Razors are and they are good glass for the price, but better options exist.

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deerkiller

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 3, 2019
Messages
349
a person will believe what they want, think what they want and buy what THEY decide is the "best"
In reading probably darn near every single post on the topic for a long time now I'd say that 9 out of 10, after trying GOOD 12x-15x binoculars rather than the spotter they had been using converted immediately - it makes no sense to me why a person who had used spotters always with a tripod would then not just know that the tripod is a no brainer for higher power binocs as well (and "spotting" in general) - As stated myriad times before, not all eyes see through a given optic the same way, it's just that way for we humans - maybe a 15x is too much for one guy while the next wants to go to 20x - it might be sorta spendy if you have to buy each to try but here on Rokslide there are a good bunch of folks that will go to lengths to accommodate other members getting to try a good cross section BUT, if not possible, I don't think you could go wrong getting a HIGH QUALITY 12x binocular to begin with (AND a decent tripod !)
 

BRTreedogs

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Nov 16, 2017
Messages
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Fyi Cabelas with escort you outside with the tripod and optics of your choice and let you glass with them.
I did this with my spotter and binos probably and hour each time.
I waited for a real drizzly day rite before dark.
That's when you can tell the difference in mediocre and alpha glass.
 

deerkiller

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 3, 2019
Messages
349
Fyi Cabelas with escort you outside with the tripod and optics of your choice and let you glass with them.
I did this with my spotter and binos probably and hour each time.
I waited for a real drizzly day rite before dark.
That's when you can tell the difference in mediocre and alpha glass.
Ya know ? I'd forgotten that SW will also do that ! I'd imagine any reputable optics dealer would as well ….
 
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