Have you noticed that hunting optics have been increasing in quality and decreasing in price over the last few years? And this year’s newest models continue that trend. Who would have thought, for example, that you could get a high-quality Zeiss bino for under $1,600, a German-engineered Minox for less than $500, and a decent Bushnells for well under $200?
When you do go shopping for new binoculars for 2014, don’t even bother looking through them at the gun counter. The minor details that separate the high-end binos from the lower-end are slight, and hard to detect looking at the rafters of a Bass Pro Shop. You’ll want to get outside, preferably during low-light times, and check out that glass. That’s one of the only ways you’ll really make heads or tails of the differences in optical resolution, color and clarity.
Here, Rich Moncrief shows us the Zeiss Conquest HD out on the floor at SHOT Show 2014.
Of course, at the counter you can get a good feel for ergonomics, diopter and adjustment knobs. And they are important. Either way, we can be glad that optic companies continue to innovate. Leica, for example, upped the bar with their second-generation Geovid laser-range-finder bino. It’s loaded with features, and, as you’d expect, has excellent glass.
MSRPs: 8x42 -- $179.99
10x42 -- $199.99
Bushnell’s new Excursion HD’s have a cool locking focus wheel among other features that make them a good buy. Prisms are BaK 4, they have PC-3 phase coating are fully multi-coated.
What’s your favorite glass? Share your thoughts with us in the comments!