Mini Binocular Review of a mini Leica binocular

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Mini Binocular Review of a mini Leica binocular


We had a cheap small pair of binoculars we used to take hiking with us, (free) but we broke the hinge eventually.  Fast Foward 2 years and I decided to get another pair but had not commited. I alreadyhad a cheap pair of 10 x 30 that were too big for hiking and the optics were alwasy soft. Serendiptiously I was reading a blog on Climate Science from the USA recently and coinciendentally the guy was an avid Twitcher (I am not avid by any stretct of the imaginaion, I don't go much beyond our front porch !)

Anyway, he was suggeting that for people who are serious get a pair of Leica Ultravid 8x20 BCR Compact Binoculars.  I thought okay ... went and had a look in Aus (online, as I live in a small rural community) and couldn't find any.  I did find a model lower down in spec,  so once again overseas to trusty B&H Photo.  Sure enough, they had a pair and I proceeded to fall off my chair at the price.

Found it hard to justify but then did a little more research and thougth I would save a few dollars and get a cheaper model, google'd away.  Found some twitcher site in the US, the lesser model was no where near as good or so they said.  I decided I was tired of looking through second rate crappy binoculars, girded my lions, let the moths free from the wallet and bought a pair through B&H

They subsequently arrived, my partner played with them, I didn't really touch them, we went snorkelling at Mulloway (Northern NSW) and I happened to spot severl humbacks breaching about 500m off the headland and we had the binoculars...  not really that impressed, they were good but not as fantabulous as I was led to belive.

Anyway, didn't get back to them until this morning (3 weeks later) when a Sacred Kingfisher alighted in a tree in the front yard (link to pic here) while we were having breakfast and I used them in earnest for the first time... and WOW.. stunning, I could not belive how crisp and clear they were, the bird popped out, it looked like I could reach in front of the binoculars and put him in my hand. Absolutley breathtaking optics for that closer viewing (80m) rather then 500-1000m away in the ocean.

A small note for those not in the know (like myself) the Leica nomenclature means

B= Can be used with glasses (Brille in german), and you pop the lens out to use with no glasses.

C= Compact

R=Rubbe Armoured


They are small (tiny ?) and are waterpoof to boot (wanted that for use while kayaking and rafting) they are a tight fit in the pouch, tight as in, swear at the how close a fit they are kind of tight :) Awesome to be able to use them easily with glasses (lenses popped in) and pulled out for no glasses users (my partner) and superb optics.

I obviously have not tried all the various competitors nor any other Leica models so I have nothing to comapre them to except my free pair (7 x20) my cheapish Barska (10-30 x50) neither of which is even close optically but there may be better bang for buck out there.  They are expensive (well I think so anyway) but geeze, the optics are superb for birds.

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