Kowa 773 vs 663

pjohnson8168

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Aug 22, 2012
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Totally on the fence with these two options, looks like the weight penalty for the 773 is roughly 10oz (having a little trouble nailing down weight of 663 eyepiece), pack ability seems to be close with only the 77mm having the larger objective, and price is about $700 difference.

I do a mix of day and backpack hunts for the usual western animals, run Leica Noctivids 10x on a tripod. Certainly not a trophy hunter but have come to realize some bennefit for glassing for animals with a spotter vs binos and not strictly just for a "closer" look use.

I know there are posts on this that generally lean towards the 773 but am I actually needing the performance increase if I am just looking for respectable animals and not interested in score?
 

tdhanses

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Is price still $700 diff with the sale? I believe both use the same eyepiece but could be wrong as I never really looked at the 663. I think the 773 is a great deal especially at the $1899 sale price.

That said if your just looking and not picking apart a rack I’d also look at the 553, I have both the 773 and 553 and come hunting season the 553 is always in my pack.
 
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pjohnson8168

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Definitely not picking out a rack, I did have the Kowa 553 for a short time but found it was just to difficult to actually look for animals given the FOV
 

Hatchet Jack

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the variable eyepiece for the 66's is decent but nowhere near the 77's eyepiece in terms of the FOV.

I'd go with the 30x wide angle on the 66 if you're trying to glass up critters. It is incredible, it's like i'm looking through a whole different scope when i put that eyepiece on, FOV, edge clarity, color, sharpness; everything. The 773 paired with noctivids would be a bad ass setup though. I'd probably lean toward the 77.
 

AkMtnRunner

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If you're not picking apart a rack, I suggest going to high mag binoculars instead. Especially if you'll spend longer glassing sessions looking for game through the optic. Then, when/if you do need a spotting scope to pick something apart, you'll be glad you have something in the 77mm and 60x range.
 
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pjohnson8168

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Thanks guys - endednup getting a fantastic deal on a 773 thanks to a great member here, should have it in my hands in a couple days, super excited to get it in the field
 

soupcan

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Dec 3, 2019
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Thanks guys - endednup getting a fantastic deal on a 773 thanks to a great member here, should have it in my hands in a couple days, super excited to get it in the field
What are your thoughts on the 773? I’m thinking about pulling the trigger on one.
 

eric1115

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Jun 26, 2018
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I've spent some time with a 774, a Swaro ATS 80 HD side by side, and my take was this: I had about 3-5 minutes at very last light where the swaro pulled ahead, but for the 20 minutes or so right before that they were neck and neck. Before that last 20-30 minutes, the image in the Kowa was to me more vivid to me and the other guys evaluating. Not necessarily sharper or even brighter, but better color. Both of these outlasted the pre-HD STS 65 and Kowa 554 that were there too by 15 minutes or so, and the Kowa 662 was a good 10 minutes earlier than that.
 

Matt G.

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I am still debating this. I originally bought the 554 for decent price and it is nice. Then I made the mistake of looking at optics classifieds and found the 774 for screaming deal and had to get it thinking i was going to sell one. 3 months later I still cannot decide. I gravitate to the 77 more often due to the wide view. I have not gone where weight was an issue.

Sent from my SM-G981U using Tapatalk
 
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pjohnson8168

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My time with it has been limited so far but have taken it on one scouting trip and spy missions around the neighborhood but I am happy with it. I dont have the expertise to throw out a bunch of technical terms but I can say that the FOV is a great step up from the 553, usable for me at 60x (for what I have done so far), and I know now that I prefer a dual focus knob. I havent done any side by side comparisons on the image but I have zero complaints, personally I think its excellent.

I am taking it to Kodiak next week for a deer/caribou hunt and plan to give it some good use so should have some better feedback after the trip.
 

tdhanses

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I am still debating this. I originally bought the 554 for decent price and it is nice. Then I made the mistake of looking at optics classifieds and found the 774 for screaming deal and had to get it thinking i was going to sell one. 3 months later I still cannot decide. I gravitate to the 77 more often due to the wide view. I have not gone where weight was an issue.

Sent from my SM-G981U using Tapatalk
Keep both if you can.
 
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