I suspect that a monocular would give better performance for the weight, and if you lend them to others then there's not the issue of re-focussing one lens like you have with binos.
What kind of weight/size are you looking for?
I recently bought a pair of Bushnell Natureviews and apart from the crap lense caps they're very good for the price.
a budget would be also helpful
a cheaper, but slightly heavier option might be the Bushnell H2O 8x42 for 60ish quid(funny, it looks smaller than yours)
I have a pair of Optricon 8x42 Countryman, not to big and beautiful to handle, I dropped them on the floor in the house once and took them to the shop where I bought them, they sent them back to Opticron for repairing and they did not charge me anything ! Now that is good customer care.
Personally I carry a Yukon Scout. You can't help but feel like a pirate when you pull out a collapsible telescope. It's fairly big though if all you were after was a pocket scope (about the size of a beer can).
Very timely thread - my Dad apparently wants a set for his birthday.
I know he's got a big set of something like 10x70 that are ancient and a tiny set of 8x20, so guess he's after something in between for a reasonable budget.
I have a pair of Leica 8 x 42, which are superb, but too heavy to carry around with all your gear.
In the compact 8 x 20 I have tested side by side (but not bought)
Svaroski - if money is no problem these are the best. If you can't afford them, don't ever look through a pair, as nothing else is quite as good.
Leica, Zeiss - expensive and very good, but IMHO not quite as good as the Svaroski.
RSPB - think these are about £200. Not quite up to the standard of the other three, but still very good indeed.
Totally agree on the new series of Swarowski binos. I have a pair of Leica 10x50, and while they are great in low light conditions I wish I could swap them for a lighter 42 diameter Swarowski set. The new coating and lens design really is another step above what Leica and Zeiss currently have on offer.
I've had a pair of Pentax UCF-Mini 8x21 for many years. I find them very good, in terms of pin-cushioning, chromatic & spherical aberration, brightness and focus.
I notice that they seem to go for about £15 on a well-known auction site, and the examples I've seen look like they're in very good condition. And no, I'm not selling mine anywhere.
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