Vortex Razor UHD 8X42 - is it just me?

Acidbraker

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So, I just received a NEW set of UHD 8x from AAoptics, was super excited about seeing at the molecular level, for hunting in the upper midwest, and general purpose and birdwatching. I took them out on the back deck today and was comparing them to all the other binos in my stable, and at the end of it I'm generally underwhelmed. They feel great, quality is good, super clear, really bright...it just seems like they're not...right. These are my most expensive pair of binos. Seems like they almost have too much eye relief, and I get "darkout" when I'm looking around the image. I can pull them away from my eyes a little, and rest them a little further up on my brow, but I don't feel like I should have to compensate with a bino at this price point. Comparing them to a set of Torics 8X, the UHD may be a tad brighter, and a tad more field, but that's it. Clarity feels the same, eye positioning on the Torics feels better. I want to like these, I just feel like I'm missing something. I'm probably the wrong person to be comparing the finer details on higher quality optics, and maybe I just don't know what I'm talking about. Like a beer guy at a wine tasting. Maybe I should have just stuck with the beer. Anyhow, I'm going to give them a couple more days checking the birds in the yard, and see if I can learn to love them. If not, they will be on the classifieds for what I paid for them with my LE discount - $1260. Let me know if anyone out there has a similar experience.

On a side note, I also ordered a refurb set of the diamondback HD 10x42. I am surprisingly very impressed with these for the quality:cost ratio. I think I like them better than my steiner predator 10X42's.

Thanks for letting me vent,
Steve
 

Jgent15

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Oct 21, 2021
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If you don’t mind me asking, where did you find them refurbed?


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Delloro

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Jul 18, 2021
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So, I just received a NEW set of UHD 8x from AAoptics, was super excited about seeing at the molecular level, for hunting in the upper midwest, and general purpose and birdwatching. I took them out on the back deck today and was comparing them to all the other binos in my stable, and at the end of it I'm generally underwhelmed. They feel great, quality is good, super clear, really bright...it just seems like they're not...right. These are my most expensive pair of binos. Seems like they almost have too much eye relief, and I get "darkout" when I'm looking around the image. I can pull them away from my eyes a little, and rest them a little further up on my brow, but I don't feel like I should have to compensate with a bino at this price point. Comparing them to a set of Torics 8X, the UHD may be a tad brighter, and a tad more field, but that's it. Clarity feels the same, eye positioning on the Torics feels better. I want to like these, I just feel like I'm missing something. I'm probably the wrong person to be comparing the finer details on higher quality optics, and maybe I just don't know what I'm talking about. Like a beer guy at a wine tasting. Maybe I should have just stuck with the beer. Anyhow, I'm going to give them a couple more days checking the birds in the yard, and see if I can learn to love them. If not, they will be on the classifieds for what I paid for them with my LE discount - $1260. Let me know if anyone out there has a similar experience.

On a side note, I also ordered a refurb set of the diamondback HD 10x42. I am surprisingly very impressed with these for the quality:cost ratio. I think I like them better than my steiner predator 10X42's.

Thanks for letting me vent,
Steve
I didn't like looking through Leicas, everybody else loves them. "Fit" is a thing.
 

JGRaider

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Jul 3, 2019
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340
No offense, but if I'm spending $1250 on binos, the UHD's wouldn't be in the top 5 for my eyeballs. I'd look to used SLC's, Tract, Maven, Conquest HD, Meostar HD, NIkon MHG first.
 

DangerRanger

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North Carolina
It’s such a personal thing. I had a pair of 18 uhd and really liked them I just didn’t need them. I had a pair of swaro slc hd that I just never liked, they fit my face poorly and something always felt off. My trinovids are way better for ME.

I’m not surprised by you not getting along with them, but I also don’t think that’s because they are a bad bino, it’s just how it goes with optics IME
 

bradb

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Jan 8, 2013
Messages
783
I have said many times, that if we could cover up binos so people didn't know which they were looking through and they did a blind test of several, they would choose binos different then what they have and thought were the best.
I do also believe "fit" is a thing
 
OP
Acidbraker

Acidbraker

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You seem to have issues with eye relief. Did you play with the eye cups?
I played with the eye cups, B cups, C cups, D a couple times but she was a little weird. I kid...but not really.

Cups fully extended is best, but if they had one more click out they would be better.

I had them out today with a set of toric 8x up on a ridge overlooking lake superior. Dialed in on a flag maybe 3/4 mile away. Both were able to pick up the stars pretty clearly. Both held roughly the same depth of focus. Similar clarity. The UHD had noticeably more field of view. With the trees in fall colors it seemed like the Torics would slightly exaggerate the yellow and bright green. The UHD had a more natural tone...to my eyes. Your experience WILL for sure vary as I have some red/green color deuteranopia.

I think I've decided to keep them...for now. I can get along with the eye placement issue.

Steve
 

bigmooi

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Minnesota
I think I've decided to keep them...for now. I can get along with the eye placement issue.

Steve

Man for the price of entry I would never thought one would need to sell themselves to like something... I also do think "fit" is a thing, I was looking at some Zeiss Conquest that I found open box but I was forcing myself to like them for the price... But luckily they sold, I went with a pair of Tract which look great but now I get the chance to deal with their CS department as I do not know why I get a crunchy feel and sound when I spinning the focus knob quickly...it happens as slow speed but you can only feel it at that slower speed. While those were shipping I got a killer deal on a pair of Leupold BX4s and they seem great for the money, I would say they are par compared to the Tract but that would make sense since they basically cost the same amount. I also tried to compare them to my father's Leicas but honestly we thought they were about even it was a German vs Japan argument at that point... And the Germans just cost more it seems.

I can say I have never tried a pair of Swaros since they are out of my price range and I do not want to skew all other glass in my life but I really think people are trying to split hairs when it gets to alpha. I wish there was a blind test like they do with speaker cables and wine to see who comes out on top...

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DawnPatrol

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Dec 22, 2020
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Nunya
I have said many times, that if we could cover up binos so people didn't know which they were looking through and they did a blind test of several, they would choose binos different then what they have and thought were the best.
Seriously. Is this something the Rokslide staff could do?
 

Hoodie

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Aug 6, 2020
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524
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Oregon Cascades
Tract Torics and the UHD are both made by Kamakura. The UHD would be even more similar to the Maven B2.

Short list of Kamakura binoculars:

Razor UHD (the original Razor HD was as well before Vortex started having them made in China)
Maven B Series (all of them)
Tract Toric
GPO Passion HD
*Pretty sure the Japanese Leupold models are as well

It's really common for one OEM to manufacture binos for several companies. I wouldn't pay for a UHD when you can get a Maven B2 for less.
 
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Acidbraker

Acidbraker

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Thanks for the input folks. I think I need to explain myself a little as to why I've decided to hang onto the UHD's. My biggest issue with them upon first use was the eye position/darkout issue. They have a ton of eye relief. After using them for a bit it seems that this is just an intricacy of the binos, and has pretty much been solved with a short learning curve. In my previous post I stated that "I could get along with the eye placement issue." I need to clarify that. It's not really an issue. It was me. After getting some time with them I can quickly mount them, and have a bright clean view that I can look around inside. It just took a minute to figure out their particular flavor. I do not feel like I am settling or having to compensate.

Another reason I'm keeping them is the Vortex customer service. Now I know other companies have great CS, and others have similar warranties. But Vortex CS is fantastic, and they go out of their way. The other thing is that they are based in WI, and I'm just over the bridge in MN. I almost feel like I'm supporting local business...almost. I know this is kinda dumb, but it is what it is.

Being an addiction and such, my optical journey will continue and one day these will be eclipsed by something new and fantastic as means become available. For now these will suffice as my "highish end" binos, and I'm happy with that.

-Steve
 

BCsteve

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Sep 22, 2013
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BC, Canada
I played with the eye cups, B cups, C cups, D a couple times but she was a little weird. I kid...but not really.

Cups fully extended is best, but if they had one more click out they would be better.

I had them out today with a set of toric 8x up on a ridge overlooking lake superior. Dialed in on a flag maybe 3/4 mile away. Both were able to pick up the stars pretty clearly. Both held roughly the same depth of focus. Similar clarity. The UHD had noticeably more field of view. With the trees in fall colors it seemed like the Torics would slightly exaggerate the yellow and bright green. The UHD had a more natural tone...to my eyes. Your experience WILL for sure vary as I have some red/green color deuteranopia.

I think I've decided to keep them...for now. I can get along with the eye placement issue.

Steve
I find that eye cup adjustment can make a huge difference and it’s not standard across the board. On my Pentax I need to have the eye cups extended all the way out, on my Vortex Fury, all the way out is too much and settled on two clicks out. It’s the simple things that can make the difference. I know guys who don’t know that the eye cups are adjustable or what they do.
 

pacoalcracker

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anyone thinking glass for 1000-1200 bucks is as good, or even close to the Alpha glass are just kidding themselves...and Im going to leave it right there as there is no disputing it. Try to argue your point over on the bird watcher forums. The people in the know...know.
 

Hoodie

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Lots of folks seem to think the Monarch HG, Meostar, and Maven B2 hang with the SLC. I frequent birdforum's binocular section.

I haven't heard anyone say those $1k range binos are as good as an EL, SF, Nocotvid, etc. But those are a big jump up in price. Guess it depends on which "alpha" someone's referring to.

All binos have compromises. Plenty of people have spent $2k on an 8x32 EL SV (which definitely fits my definition of an "alpha") and found the glare worse than on some $500 binos. This is from a test of various 8x32 done by a member of birdforum.

Glare is a big deal when you're glassing towards a low angle sun. Happens all the time in hunting.

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JGRaider

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anyone thinking glass for 1000-1200 bucks is as good, or even close to the Alpha glass are just kidding themselves...and Im going to leave it right there as there is no disputing it. Try to argue your point over on the bird watcher forums. The people in the know...know.

And if you think you will see things through a $2k+ alpha that you won't see equally as well through a Meostar HD, NIkon HG, Tract Toric, Conquest HD, and a few others then you are really kidding yourself.
 
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