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  1. #1
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    New optics, opinions wanted

    I have some money coming I want to use to expand my optics. I plan to splurge once on these and hopefully be done upgrading for at least the next decade, hopefully longer. As to my hunting style, I usually make a trip out west each fall for elk, muleys, or antelope. I put in lots of miles on foot when I go, so weight is a factor. I also hunt whitetail around home and scout extensively before season. I hunt predators quite a bit also. I work on a ranch, and also use my optics for checking cows while calving without disturbing them, reading tag numbers, I find lots of uses for them. I practice shooting regularly to 600yds, and am comfortable shooting to that distance under ideal conditions. I want a rangefinder that will read quick and accurate to that distance, my Leupold seems to struggle past 450yds. I won't come up with this kind of money for hunting again for a while, whatever I buy will have to last me.

    Here is what I have
    Zeiss Victory FL-T 8x56 - my whitetail hunting binos to use all available light
    Zeiss Victory FL-T 10x42 -my all purpose binos, use for everything else
    Nikon ED50 spotter - my only spotter right now, have a really good tripod for glassing and a really light tripod for real long steep days.
    Leupold RXIV 1000yd rangefinder

    Here is what I'm thinking of adding
    Vortex Kaibab 15x56 - judging antelope and scouting from the truck
    Swarovski 10x42 EL Range binos - keep locked in my safe except for hunting trips use the Zeiss for scouting, I want a rangefinder built into my binos capable of giving me the angle compensated range
    Swarovski ATS65 spotter with the 20-50WA eyepiece - spotter for use from vehicle scouting and hunts where I will be glassing enough to justify the extra weight.

    Any comments or reviews on the ones I'm looking at and how they will fit into my system? I know the Swaro and Zeiss 10x42's overlap, but my wife hunts also. She doesn't seem content with her optics anymore after using mine so that is part of my reason for expanding the line-up. This way she could have my Zeiss 10x42's and Leupold rangefinder when we are hunting apart from each other.

  2. #2
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    Hard to go wrong with Swarovski if you have the stomach to lay down the $$$$.
    I have way too many optics. I just ran though the manufacturers leopold, nikon, leica, meoptic, fujinon, and swarovski (along with several low end optics, tasco, bushnell, etc).

    Zeiss are undoubtedly top end optics and I don't know that much about vortex except they seem to have a great guarantee.
    I don't own Zeiss binos but I once had a guy standing beside me with a pair of brand new ones comparable to my 15 year old slcs.
    He asked to look though mine and by the end of our comparison he said he was taking them back to Cabelas to swap for swaros.

    I have the swaro spotting scope you are looking at. I used to own a Nikon and literally gave it away after I got my angled Swarovski.
    One of the best purchases I have made.
    I just picked up a Swaro SLC 15X56wb which was discontinued. It is heavy but the optics are exceptional. If you can still find one of the discontinued ones you might be able to save about 30-40%. I don't think that would get you down to the Vortex price but 40% off is huge.

    I know you would be happy with the swarovski spotter.
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    Mathews DXT, Bowtech Admiral, Browing .300WSM...... and Swarovski Optiks my wife doesn't know about.
    1999 Washington Blacktaill, Bear River GMU, nontypical 6X7

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  4. #3
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    Hey Mcseal2,

    You have some nice stuff already

    I like your Swaro spotter choice too. A good bump in performance, and not too bad on weight.

    You may want to look close at the Leica Geovid B. It seems to have an excellent rangefinder, and more advanced ballistic function set than other rangefinding binoculars. I like the idea of a Micro SD card with your load data. I haven't used one yet in the field (been trying), but I am interested in this product myself.

    On the 15's, the Kaibabs are likely suitable, but also note Meopta came out with a 15X56 this year, and although I also haven't tired that particular configuration, I have yet to see a poor performing Meopta product. Just another one to research. Of course, if you are willing to spring for it, the 15X56 SLCs are awesome.

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  6. #4
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    Thanks for the replys.

    I will look for the 15x discounted Swaros. I have looked through a set and was definitely impressed. The 15x binos likely won't be the most used of my optics so I hated to spend 2k plus. As far as a rangefinder all I really want from it is an angle compensated true ballistic range. I am used to my current system, and have a turret on my scope matched to my load and expected elevation. I like to keep things simple, especially when incorporating something to go wrong into my binos, or to many buttons for me to fumble with when my adrenaline is rolling. I have my load data and MOA wind holds memorized, I've been using the same loads for a while now.

    I'm looking at dropping 6k if I do this, but I have the money saved right now. Not drawing any western tags this year helped, no expensive trips. I know it's a huge chunk of money, half being the Swaro binos. I got my finances in good shape and have been building the hunting budget for a while to do this. I have done the cheaper optics building up to what I have now, and am now firmly in the buy once, cry once school.

  7. #5
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    Do the 15x56 binos have enough advantage over 10x42 to be worth having both? Seems like you would almost have to have them on a tripod?
    "Now two flags fly above my land that really sum up how I fee. One is the colors that fly high and proud The red, the white, the blue. The other one's got a rattlesnake With a simple statement made "Don't tread on me" is what it says and I'll take that to my grave. Because this is me. I'm proud to be American and strong in my beliefs. And I've said it before but I'll say it again 'Cause my family's always fought and died to save this land. And a country boy is all I'll ever be."

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  9. #6
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    R we talkin binos or spotting scopes? Im with mm. I don't see how 15x binos are practical without using a pod.

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  11. #7
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    oh you definitely need a tripod or some sort of steady support. i use a tripod 50% of the time with my 12x its just so much easier to do a grid and glass intently with both eyes open all the time ..i just wish i had the money to buy better glass...i say go with the swaros

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  13. #8
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    The 15x binos will be used with a tripod.

  14. #9
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    Mcseal, if I were you I'd look at the new 20 X 56 Kaibab for using on the tripod.

    Sent from my SGH-M919 using Tapatalk

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  16. #10
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    Musket,
    The 15X56 SLCs have a tripod mount included.
    Been carrying them during a few spring bear trips.
    Don't have to use a tripod but if you are using them as a spotter it would be preferable.

    I've noticed my triceps and pecs are getting bigger using them without a tripod
    Life member RMEF
    Mathews DXT, Bowtech Admiral, Browing .300WSM...... and Swarovski Optiks my wife doesn't know about.
    1999 Washington Blacktaill, Bear River GMU, nontypical 6X7

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