Ski Club 2.0 Home
Snow Reports
FAQFAQ

Mail for help.Help!!

Log in to snowHeads to make it MUCH better! Registration's totally free, of course, and makes snowHeads easier to use and to understand, gives better searching, filtering etc. as well as access to 'members only' forums, discounts and deals that U don't even know exist as a 'guest' user. (btw. 50,000+ snowHeads already know all this, making snowHeads the biggest, most active community of snow-heads in the UK, so you'll be in good company)..... When you register, you get our free weekly(-ish) snow report by email. It's rather good and not made up by tourist offices (or people that love the tourist office and want to marry it either)... We don't share your email address with anyone and we never send out any of those cheesy 'message from our partners' emails either. Anyway, snowHeads really is MUCH better when you're logged in - not least because you get to post your own messages complaining about things that annoy you like perhaps this banner which, incidentally, disappears when you log in :-)
Username:-
 Password:
Remember me:
durr, I forgot...
Or: Register
(to be a proper snow-head, all official-like!)

Binoculars!

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Possibly a bit random but I've got to come up with Xmas ideas and have most stuff I need - thinking about binoculars - I think it was watching Cody Townsend scoping out lines on The 50

Love the mountains, we also hike, ride and surf so thinking some bins would be good for spotting off piste lines and skiers, checking snow conditions, just gazing off the balcony, checking the midi from Brevant, check out the swell from the van or watching surfers in action.

I knew nothing about them last week and done a bit of reading, so far I think

- I want compact as possible or I won't carry them. Dual hinge?
- Waterproof sounds essential
- Seems like 8x20 or 10x25 is the right magnification and size to carry everywhere and use in daylight

Would that spec lend itself to the above use?

Cheaper the better but not so cheap not worth having. Could pay more if it's really worth it but only occasional use, say monthly.

Something like this? https://www.johnlewis.com/nikon-aculon-a30-binoculars-10-x-25/black/p503163

I need to get to a shop and see - probably end up looking down John Lewis at TVs so not really a real world test so any comments, tips and experience useful, from do it to don't bother (more wax and socks it is then!)
ski holidays
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Only problem - ones in the link aren't waterproof or fog proof - think pulling from a ski pack or standing on the pier at Saltburn optimistically looking for North Sea swell will need both.
latest report
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
8 x 42 isn't too bad a combo and can do twilight as well
Keep an eye out in lidl or Aldi, Bresser are reasonable brand and they do smallish models
Failing that, some ultralight decathlon/solognac versions are robust and replaceable
https://www.decathlon.co.uk/mh-b-540-x10-adjustable-id_8353674.html
snow conditions
 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
Have a look at these:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00VQC1A9Q/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1&tag=amz07b-21

We have 2 pairs, which we use for various things but primarily when marshaling motorbike racing to see bike numbers and stuff on track (debris, oil, etc.) We've been really pleased with them and they seem pretty robust. I've left them out in the rain and used them in a wide variety of conditions without any issue.
latest report
 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@gravity-slave, look through a few and you will see where your price point should be. Cheaper ones just can't bring stuff into focus as well, and its there to see. This is very definitely an area where one gets what one pays for. As for magnification, this decision might also reveal itself by looking. 10x is great for faraway stuff but the wrong tool for closer stuff. 8x good compromise given your uses. I used the concept of "heirloom" to justify getting some nice ones and have not regretted it. I think the camera companies make binos with a good balance of quality and price.
snow conditions
 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Have a look at these:

https://uk.hawkeoptics.com/nature-trek-10x25-binocular.html

They do a good range, but the ones I've linked to suit your needs and they fold down super small (<90mm wide) even though they're single hinge.

I have a Hawke hunting scope and it's very very good value for money; crisp bright and really well made.
snow report
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I've got Olympus 10x42 Pro waterproof. Top quality optics.

I used to work for Olympus. Disclaimer.
ski holidays
 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I have a compact pair of Zeiss binos. Cost me about £200 about 3 years ago. I writing this without them to hand, but I think they are in Zeiss Terra range. Small is handy and I think even Mr P appreciated how easy they were to carry about when we were on a trip to Antarctica compared with his slightly bigger ones. There weren’t cheap, but there is a balance between size and practicality - and small ones are likely to be used more than big ones in my experience.
snow report
 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
We've a few pairs of binoculars.

Without wishing to teach you to suck eggs (and this info may be useful for someone else), the two numbers you need to worry about at Magnification * Aperture. the higher the magnification, the bigger things will see,but also the smaller your field of view will be, so you will have to pan more to see things. the bigger the aperture, the brighter (and hopefully clearer) the image will be, though higher quality binoculars with a smaller aperture may well produce a better image than cheaper binoculars with a biiger aperture

8*42 is the main size we use - I have Vanguard Endeavour, and Mrs NBT has some Celestron Granite. Both have "ED" or "HD" lenses which means the glass has been treated to give a better image - I'm not an expert on the mechanics so I don't know exactly how it works but you reaky can tell whe you try them against "regular" glass.

We have had some 8*50 Bresser from Aldi (maybe Lidl) and they were fab for the money - quite light and a very acceptable image despite non-ED glass, though not as good as the main binoculars we use

For travelling, we originally had some RSPB Rambler 8*25s, dual hinged. they were ok but I never fel really comfortable with them. We lost them somwehere in Courmayeur, they must have fallen out of my rucksack. We replaced them with Barr & Stroud Sahara 8*25s and we've both found them much better

The best advice I can give you is to try as many pairs as you can find. No point spending a fortune on a lovely big pair that you never take anywhere as they're too heavy, nor spending any money on a light set that you never bother using as the image is useless. Comfort is key, and if you wear spectacles then I'd recommend getting twist-out eyecups, preferably with intermediate stops so you can get the right setting. If you have a local RSPB reserve, it's worth checking there as some of them do have optics events where you can try different models. where are you based?

EDIT - I see you mentioned Saltburn, so I reckon trip to RSPB Saltholme might be wort your while

https://ww2.rspb.org.uk/reserves-and-events/events-dates-and-inspiration/events/details.aspx?id=tcm:9-463542
snow report
 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
The "ED" monicker is generally used to describe "extra low dispersion" glass, meaning that the light passing through from one side to the other is less dissipated by the glass's structure, with obvious advantage to the viewing eye. The glass melt formulation is principally responsible for this quality.

HD being a more loose marketing term ordinarily denotes high definition, which if manufactured well from good design specs will also be obviously desirable. This may be enhanced by specific surface coatings that control the dispersion of the light as it passes in and out of the glass surface. This delivers to the optic, light in "best condition" for the len's magnification to be enacted.

Camera shops usually carry a decent range to try if you have one near you.
snow report
 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
I have a pair of Steiner Safari 10 x 26. Good clear optics, perfect size for carrying around and great customer service. My first pair the optic's were knocked out of alignment (don't lend things to people), sent them back to Steiner to be repaired and was sent a brand new updated pair for free.

review here https://www.bestbinocularsreviews.com/Steiner10x26SafariPro-36.htm
ski holidays
 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Wow, I expected tumbleweeds. Thanks for all the info...

nbt,
Great stuff and very helpful, egg sucking is about my level.
Saltburn is where I sometimes surf but it's a fair trek, there is a closer RSPB so that could be a great chance for hand/eyes on!

I think I'm homing in on 8x25 as size is most important or I won't have them with me. Sounds like another n+1 topic though!
Found a few at about the £60-£70 mark which sounds about the right level/price to get started. Next step is to get to a couple of shops and try to see if I can see a difference.
ski holidays
 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
gravity-slave wrote:
Wow, I expected tumbleweeds. Thanks for all the info...

nbt,
Great stuff and very helpful, egg sucking is about my level.
Saltburn is where I sometimes surf but it's a fair trek, there is a closer RSPB so that could be a great chance for hand/eyes on!

I think I'm homing in on 8x25 as size is most important or I won't have them with me. Sounds like another n+1 topic though!
Found a few at about the £60-£70 mark which sounds about the right level/price to get started. Next step is to get to a couple of shops and try to see if I can see a difference.


Regarding size, you'll find that most 8x25s and 10x25s from the same manufacturer will share the same body but with a different glass setup inside. So you will generally not see or feel any difference between the two unless you look through. At what distance do things normally peak your interest? If I was scoping out the mountains I would go for 10x as you're usually further away than you think, and you will get a better idea of micro-topography. If you are wanting to casually have a nosey, watch skiers at speed etc, the the 8x would be preferable.

The objective lens size (i.e. 25mm) will affect the size/weight of the folded binoculars but to be honest, 32mm and under is normally a safe palm and pocket size (dependant on the manufacturers body).
latest report
 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Good question about distance. I don't know really!
Probably quite far. Say car park to beach or balcony to pistes, or across a valley at a resort.
Maybe 10x! I think my hands are quite steady, from low light sports photography and ok control from panning a camera.
snow conditions
 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Couple of threads to peruse over omn Singletrackworld (that one links to others)

https://singletrackworld.com/forum/topic/binoculars-for-birdwatching/
snow report
 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
gravity-slave wrote:
...Cheaper the better but not so cheap not worth having. Could pay more if it's really worth it but only occasional use, say monthly....
I bought some outrageously expensive Leica binoculars about 20 years ago. With hindsight they're probably the best value of anything I've ever purchased: a timeless design, small enough not to get left at home, sound in all weathers, there when you need them.
snow report
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
nbt wrote:
Couple of threads to peruse over omn Singletrackworld


I thought I recognised your username Smile
Cheers

philwig -I do keep looking at the Leica. Maybe next time, as my 7 year old is very interested in using them ("but you get them Daddy, you find things far away more interesting than I do!"), something cheaper will get me started and he can have them if he develops an interested in making far away things bigger and I have an upgrade path to the Leica!
snow report
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
My wife bought me a pocket monocular, which is perfect for spying out signposts below or routes off-piste, and easily carried. We found it so useful that, in the end, I had to buy one for her. (Given I tend to spend more than she does on equipment-type stuff, perhaps this was her strategy all along?) ...
ski holidays
 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
@gravity-slave, have a look at zeiss and nikon. both make excellent glass. try out the ones at an rspb centre and see if you can tell the difference in image quality. if you can't, just get the cheapest... but if you want to see the colours on small birds at a distance, you might need to pay abit more. i found 200gbp to be a 'reasonable' price point....ymmv.
snow report
 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@gravity-slave, We have a pair of the Nikon Oculons and are very happy with them. I'm in no way an expert but we've had a few different pairs over the years including some aldi bought bresser ones and the Oculons are the best we've used and for the price I think you can't get better.
latest report
 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
I too have a pair of 8x42 Vangards, I got them in a half price sale at £150 and their low light clarity is pretty good. However, try to take a look through a pair of Swarovskis... you just might need a mortgage to buy them Laughing
ski holidays
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Like Scarpa and nbt, I can strongly recommend the Vanguard binos. I got them following a recommendation from a friend for works for a Wildlife Trust, who is a pro wildlife photographer - he reckons they are the best in that price band and compare very well with considerably more expensive pairs.
snow conditions
 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Scarpa wrote:
However, try to take a look through a pair of Swarovskis... you just might need a mortgage to buy them Laughing

Friend of mine has a pair. I could never justify the price, but WOW
snow conditions
 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
I have a 25 year old heavy pair of7x50 Swarowski, lovely 7x42 Leica and two pairs of Bausch&Lomb binos (8x42 and 10x56).

8x42 B&L is my go-to choice.

Anything 10x is a bit too shaky.
Anything less than 42 has absurdly narrow picture and just not enough clarity.

Buy cheap if you like...but you will just buy twice because you will end up upgrading.

Waterproof is vital.
Twist out eyecups are vital.

BTW I got them all second hand for a safari where all the family wanted their own pair.



These days I think Nikon are perhaps the best value for money.
ski holidays
 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@Frosty the Snowman, I was looking through the new Swarovski Z8i telescopic sight at a show. 42mm objective lense but the magnification range goes from 1.7 - 13.3x. Over £2.5K but they would last you a lifetime and still be worth most of their value at the end.
ski holidays
 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
As a birdwatcher I have a couple of pairs of high end bins but my wife uses Nikon Travelite which are excellent value for money. They are small but only single hinged which I find easier to use than double hinged and have a little more bulk than some of the more high end ones, making them feel better in the hand and yet still fit in pocket or on a belt in accompanying case.
They come in either 8x or 10x magnification and for what you are thinking of the 10x would probably be preferable. I think Amazon has them around £100-£125.
ski holidays
 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Consider a good monocular, we find them much easier to use!
snow conditions
 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Tully wrote:
As a birdwatcher I have a couple of pairs of high end bins but my wife uses Nikon Travelite which are excellent value for money. They are small but only single hinged which I find easier to use than double hinged and have a little more bulk than some of the more high end ones, making them feel better in the hand and yet still fit in pocket or on a belt in accompanying case.
They come in either 8x or 10x magnification and for what you are thinking of the 10x would probably be preferable. I think here you can have them around £100-£125.


I use the Nikon one too for a while now, didn't have any issues with that
ski holidays



Terms and conditions  Privacy Policy