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Swarovski EL 10x50

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Swarovski EL 10x50 Details

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Swarovski EL 10x50 Specifications

ManufacturerSwarovski
Binoculars seriesSwarovski EL
Made inAustria
In production since
Warranty10 years
SKU01130505
Type of prism Roof - Schmidt/Pechan
Variable magnification No
Magnification. 10x
Diopter adjustment +4 / -4 dpt
Lens size diameter. 50mm
Exit pupil. 5mm
Field of view - FOV... 115m/1000m
Field of view (angular). 7.3943°
Apperent FOV (angular). 69.4188°
Eye relief distance. 22.4082mm
Closest focusing distance. 3.134m
Twilight Factor 22.36
Light transmittance
Relative Brightness 25
Lens coatings Fully Multicoated
Length.174mm
Width.151.2241mm
Height.75.612mm
Weight.1118.1702g
MaterialNo
ColorGreen
Working temperature range-25° / +50°C
Filled with Nitrogen
Focusing system Central
Diopter setting locationCentral
Minimal interpupillary distance.56
Maximal interpupillary distance.74
Type of BodyOpen bridge
Water proof Yes
Fogproof Yes
Tripod compliantNo
Built-in Compass No
Built in Range finderNo
Image stabilization (IS) No
Able to float No

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Reviews for Swarovski EL 10x50

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Perfect All-rounder Now at Incredible Value for Money - Just a Little Heavy By
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To own and use these binoculars is to love them. Why is this the case and is it all roses and sunshine all the way? Part of the reason why this particular model of the Swarovski range is so long-endearing for me is that it is something I keep coming back to and enjoying glassing with despite some of its characteristic idiosyncrasies.

Before I go on to extol the virtues and comparative limitations of this binocular, it’s important to set a little bit of context around how I came to purchase them. I had come to a point in my time of nature observation and birdwatching which led me to hunt down and discover what would be, for me at least, an optimal ‘go-to’ binocular. I wanted something that would offer the best in terms of exhilarating viewing experience and professional quality viewing. You could say that I had been drilling down my options as to what would become not just a reliable binocular but something that would be truly worth the asking price (or as close to it as possible) as commanded by the elite three in this competitive and fiercely contested segment of the market between Swarovski, Zeiss and Leica.

I had to keep my expectations in check, though, as I was aware that not any one binocular can cover all the ‘bases’ perfectly. To that end I had set my aspirations around covering my viewing demands to both a super lightweight a compact 8x magnification binocular and 10. My way of thinking at the time simply went something like this: “If I’m going to be buying a pair of binoculars so that I can see what is in the distance the most clearly, then surely I want the greatest magnification possible with the minimum number of compromises. I will concede I need an 8x binocular for maximizing my field of view, so I will need to buy some eights for ‘hitting’ my target birds with a good line of sight, especially when tracking swallows and martins in the summer months, not to mention keeping up with dragonflies, butterflies or in fact anything that moves quickly like a flock of pigeons. So, what will compromise my field of view the least, and give me the most rewarding detailed picture of what I want to observe?” After all, nature observation for me conveys the goal of exactly that – being able to spend time observing the subject as much as possible without chasing and tracking about for fleeting seconds of mere glimpses.

Don’t get me wrong, some glimpses can be breath-taking and truly memorable, but to bring nature literally closer to home I didn’t want to compromise on magnification.

With this in mind I settled on the premise of buying 10x power binoculars with an excellent field of view. To that end I initially purchased a pair of Zeiss SF 10x42 and for reasons that I will explain in another review, decided to change them for these Swarovski EL 10x50 SV. When I visited one of the nearest local specialist optics retailers, I explained what I wanted (and what I already owned in my binocular arsenal) - a no compromise viewing experience with amazing resolution. Without hesitation the shop assistant, a mature an experienced birder himself, immediately suggested the Swarovski 10x50 EL. I wanted to gain information that was otherwise not easy to obtain such as what is the very best that Swarovski make for resolution and pin sharp images?

His reply was that the 10x50 configuration was something truly special from Swarovski. The combination of magnification, objective lense size and field flatteners made them really stand out in the user experience even more so than the 12x magnification and the smaller 10x42.
How did I find them in use? I was gob-smacked and literally transported in an almost Star Trek type manner to the object of my observation. Initially I was looking at a clock tower with a peregrine on the eves. Taking the physical subject matter out of the wow factor, the immersive part of the experience is what genuinely blew me away. How could it be possible that he same power magnification as my Zeiss SF 10x42 could take me further into the image? How was this effect made possible? While pondering this, I was then further awestruck by just how much more I enjoyed the usually pedestrian experience of looking at flocks of pigeons, even the mossy growths on chimney pots.

One of the reasons for this enveloping effect are the superb filed flattener lenses which produce very sharp images right to the edge of the field of view. I’m not one of those individuals who suffers with rolling ball effect when tracking a moving subject that may result in some feeling motion sick. I’m glad that this doesn’t affect me negatively in any way, so check this if you are concerned that a super flat field of view may unsettle you when tracking. I find myself generally focused on the center of the image.

These binoculars also have a 5mm exit pupil. OK, it’s the same as an 8x42, but again, the field flatteners combined with greater magnification, so much light and an exceptional 115m field of view at 1000m just puts this model on a pedestal. This large exit pupil, stability of feel in the hand and impressive field of view also adds another feather in its hat for tracking kestrels, buzzards, fulmars, redstarts, oystercatchers more easily than the big brother 12x50 model. The 10x50 just has some magic about it, and what you gain in ease of use and viewing experience outweighs the losses that the 12x magnification model brings to the table. Getting on the subject straight off the bat is so easy with this 10.

Perhaps slightly counter-intuitively, the weight of the 10x50 makes for a solidly planted feel and my hands don’t shake when using them. Having said that, the only real downside is that the weight can be fatiguing. I hate to admit it but your arms will ache if you are someone who likes to remain glued to your observations as I do and sadly, often I will find myself going out on a hike reaching for my 8x binoculars instead of these, which irritates me. These 10s are perfect for the hide on propped elbows or tripod when scanning for bitterns or bearded reedlings (bearded tits), as the depth of focus is really penetrating and generous.

They may also offer more light transmission at this weight than you really need. If you are not a hunter but rather want to spot nightjars at dusk, these are fantastic high powered ‘all- rounders’ – particularly if your eyes no longer dilate above 5mm anyway due to age.

These binoculars are so special, known as the Explorer model, I can’t see myself parting with them even though there are others I will use more frequently. They are more than something to use on special occasions – they make the occasion special. It just may not be as long lasting because of the weight. Does that make the occasion more special? I say a resounding “Yes!”

Just because these binoculars excel so highly, I have to mention that their close focus is really practical in use and this earlier SV model focus just that little bit closer (2.5m) than the Field Pro Version (3.3m), has tough armour protection which I prefer over the feel of the Field Pro and the ultimate in carrying case and accessories. It even came with a compact camera adapter which may be of limited use depending on what camera you have.

(Posted on 13/08/2021)

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