Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Bino Bling With Bright Views

The Swarovski name brings to mind beautifully designed products. If you are lucky enough to own a pair of Swarovski binoculars, you have already experienced the beautiful style incorporated into their distinctive sport optics. Like Swarovski's full-sized binoculars, the Swarovski Compact 8x20 does not disappoint in styling or performance. When opening the box you will first notice the sleek black zippered bag with the classic hawk insignia on the front, an attached wrist strap, and the belt loop on the back. The petite size ( 4 inches high by 3.7 inches wide), the light weight (7.6 ounces), and an integrated neck strap will provide a compact which caters to many situations.

Like the Nikon Premier LX L 8x20 and the Leica Ultravid 8x20 compacts, the Swarovski compact has a double hinge style with a center bridge. The alloy body comes in a choice of dark green or black and the bridge shows off the Swarovski name and another hawk insignia. There is a very slight texture to the barrels and the ergonomic feel should please compact binocular users. The focus wheel, with focus travel slightly over 2 rotations, is centered at the front of the bridge. The diopter is centered at the back of the bridge between the ocular lens. I liked its operation better than Nikon and Zeiss as both wheels were smooth and easy to access despite the small size.

Field of view (345 feet/1000 yards) and close focus (13 feet) were not the best numbers of this compact group but still respectable under actual use. The close focus was impressively sharp. Eyeglass wearers may find the 13mm eye relief does not allow a full field of view. The brightness had a nice luminance and color was true. Contrast between light and dark areas was very good and resolution exhibited favorable clarity between objects. A very sharp edge of field displayed only a slight color aberration and curvature.

As is characteristic of other Swarovski sport optics, the 8x20 comes with a great warranty to compliment this reliable compact. If you want to add some "bling" to your choice of compact binocular, check out this same binocular in the Idomeneo, Nabucco and Tosca Crystal Pocket series. (Special order-please allow extra time for delivery). The Crystal Pocket binocular has an elegant Swarovski crystal fabric wrap application. This fashionable series of binoculars comes in a silver or gold leather clutch style case and has a leather neck strap with silver or gold links studded with crystals. The perfect accessory for attending live performances-beautiful to look at and through!

This concludes the series of high end compact reviews. Hopefully you found useful information on the Leica, Nikon, Swarovski, and Zeiss compacts. With their bright views and portability I am definitely putting one of these compacts on my gift list. Help out someone you love with a gift idea by emailing this blog to them. Mother's Day and Father's Day are just around the corner. Call us at 1-800-289-1132 if you have questions or would like to order.


Eagle Optics Staff

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