Hunting For New Optics?
July 24, 2018
Editorial Staff (284 articles)

Hunting For New Optics?

Five new optics for consideration

By John Goodspeed

Binoculars and spotting scopes can make or break a trophy hunt by allowing a thorough evaluation of distant game before moving closer or pulling the trigger. They also continue to evolve with what once were high-end-only glass and coatings finding their way into more affordable models. But the upscale end keeps getting better. Other products for 2018 feature compact and light spotting scopes for long hunts over rugged terrain. More companies also are offering premium binoculars and spotters direct to the consumer, which means lower prices than competitors in retail locations. Let’s take a look at a few new optics.

Note: Prices all are manufacturers’ suggested retail prices.


Blaser Primus binoculars

Blaser Primus binoculars

Blaser USA

Primus 10X42, $2,295

While Blaser is known for upscale firearms, the German company also produces a new line of binoculars. Primus models are designed for prolonged use with balance provided by a short bridge and a center of gravity near the eyepiece. A fish-scale texture on the focus and diopter rings allows easy adjustment. The Contrast and Color Corrective Coating improves performance in any light conditions. Outer lenses have Smart Lens Protection coating to shed water and dust. The 10-power model shown here weighs just more than two pounds.




Maven S1S

Maven S.1S spotting scope

Maven Outdoor Equipment Co.

S.1S 25-50X80, $2,100

This model sports an 80 mm fluorite objective lens for low-light performance and crisp images that Maven says contain no aberration or distortion with edge-to-edge clarity. With a magnesium/polymer frame, it’s nearly 15 inches long and weighs 64 1/2 ounces. Field of view at 1,000 yards ranges from about 115 feet to 84 feet. The S.1S features Schmidt–Pechan prisms, die-electric prism and phase correction coatings and oil-repelling outer coatings. The S.1 also is available with an angled eyepiece. Like their binoculars, Maven’s spotting scopes are customizable and come with a lifetime warranty.



Nikon Monarch HG binoculars

Nikon Sport Optics

Monarch HG 10X42 Binoculars, $995.95

The latest flagship HG series celebrates 20 years of the Monarch line by rebuilding it from scratch designed around a new optical system using ED glass and enhanced multilayer lens and prism coatings for brighter images and higher resolution. The new Field Flattener Lens System achieves edge-to-edge clarity with a wide field of view of 362 feet at 1,000 yards on the 10X42 model shown here. Rubberized panels coat the slim magnesium alloy body. Exterior lenses feature scratch-resistant coatings. A locking diopter retains settings. They come with a lifetime no-fault repair/replacement policy.





TRACT TORIC binoculars

TRACT Optics

TORIC 10X42, $694

The new generation TORIC features industry-leading Schott HT glass to improve image quality and light transmission, especially in the blue and violet spectrum. A flat multicoating delivers more light transmission while a locking diopter eliminates inadvertent movement. Features carrying over include a magnesium alloy body, ocular lenses with ultra-high-definition ED glass and an oil-phobic/scratch-proof/smudge-proof coating. The company sells directly to consumers with a seven-day field trial before you buy.





Vortex Viper HD

Vortex Viper HD spotting scope

Vortex Optics

Viper HD 20-60X85, $1,099.99

Vortex promises the new line of Viper HD spotting scopes is a high-end spotter without a high-end price. Like other Vipers, the 20-60X85 angled scope shown here features an HD optical system with proprietary XR multi-coated lenses to increase sharpness, light transmission and low-light performance. ArmorTek protects exterior lenses from scratches, oil, dirt and fingerprints. The large helical focus allows easy operation with gloves. The tripod collar rotates. It’s 17 1/2-inches long and weighs 76.6 ounces. The spotter also comes in a model with a straight eyepiece that makes it 1/2-inch longer.


See more new optics in the July/August Journal issue, on newsstands now.

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Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff


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