Most helpful positive review
34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
Pentax glass at it's best
on July 21, 2011
I came across a deal for a pair of Vanguard 10.5x45 ED binos ($350 with a $50 mail-in rebate). I ordered the Vanguard thinking that having ED glass it is going to kick my Pentax's a#%?!. Well I received the Vanguard in great anticipation. I took them out last weekend to see who wins the battle. Surprise-surprise, Pentax is the better of the two. I am seriously in doubt about ED glass. The Vanguard CA is much worse than Pentax. Because of the glowing reviews and all the 5 Star recommendations, I thought the Vanguard can at least better the Pentax in sharpness. Mistaken again. The Pentax is the clear winner by far. So people buy this thing knowing that you are getting a bargain. Again, if you want the ultimate binos, go get a Leica but bring another $2K with you because that is what the Leica will cost you. But for us the regular folk, the Pentax is a bargain to behold.
I did a lot of research in buying these binoculars. Originally I bought a Barska 10x42 on a local retailer visit. I knew the optics could not be that good given the price ($40) but I wanted to have a pair of compact 10x binos. After using the "cheapo" binoculars for a few months, I knew I was missing a lot so I decided to research and test different units. I looked at Nikon's Monarch ($320) Leopold's ($499) offerings. For good measure the sales guy at Bass Pro showed me a pair of $2,000 Swarowski binos. All three were good. I was told for very far viewing the extra money for the Swarowski's pay dividends. Well I am a photographer and use premium lenses to capture images. I know the glass makes all the difference. I have always been a Pentax fan. The reviews on Amazon and few others pointed me to the Pentax unit. One major deciding factor was to be the warranty coverage. According to all that I read just about all of the units mentioned above had 25 years to lifetime guarantees. Pentax has a funny terminology for their warranty which does not spell out the actual length of the coverage.
I took a leap of faith and bought the Pentax unit. I took it out today for a test drive. Wow, I am totally sold on this unit. It is ergonomically a delight to handle. It is light weight and optically it is second to non. BTW, I got the manual out and looked for the warranty disclaimer to put that issue to rest. The manual states that Pentax offers a lifetime warranty on this unit. They are asking for $20 for s&h if you have to send the bins to them for any work.
For a pair of binos with these specifications, you can spend more if you want. But I doubt you will get better performance than these Pentax 10x42s.