Talk me out of a spotter!

Yooper906

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Jan 4, 2020
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So I’m wanting to up my glassing game a bit from what I currently have Vortex Diamondbacks 12x50 and Diamondback 20-60x85mm spotter (I know, low end.)

•I know there is another thread right now about new binos, but this is different.

1. Do I buy both a spotter and binos (better glass than I currently have)
2. Keep my current binos and get a nice spotter
3. Keep current spotter and buy new binos
4. Buy a bino and skip spotter all together (Maven B5 18x56, Leupold BX-5 15x56, Vortex Kaibab 18x56)

Primarily these will be used for archery Mule Deer. I do worry about weight to an extent. Right now, I am leaning towards the Leupold Bx-5s because I really like that glass (I have a Leupold scope on my rifle) and skipping a spotter all together. I end up glassing more with binos anyways.

-yooper
 

huntandfly

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All depends on your hunting style and the terrain you hunt. There are a couple hunts every year where I may use my binos more but for the most part I wouldn’t be caught dead without a good spotter.
 

Stocker

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I broke down and bought a good spotter a few years ago. I’m glad I have it but I hardly use it. I carry my binos all the time and I usually feel it’s a hassle to drag and setup a spotter. I’m a mover though. Sitting down and glassing for an extended period of time is not something I do.


Which is probably why I’m not very successful…….
 

Yooper906

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I broke down and bought a good spotter a few years ago. I’m glad I have it but I hardly use it. I carry my binos all the time and I usually feel it’s a hassle to drag and setup a spotter. I’m a mover though. Sitting down and glassing for an extended period of time is not something I do.


Which is probably why I’m not very successful…….
If you were in the market again, would you get a more powerful set of binos that can serve dual purpose?
 

rustednuts

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I'm of the opinion a spotter is the last piece of glass you should buy. You use it the least and it has the smallest impact on the success of the hunt. Buy some great binos and have fun!
 

Yooper906

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I would sell your spotter and binos to fund a nice pair of binos first. Have you looked through the BX-5’s? They got a hard pass from me when I compared them to the meoptas that I ended up with.
No, I have not looked through the BX-5s, I live in a pretty remote part and the nearest sporting good store that has quality optics is 2+ hrs away. I will definitely make a special trip to get my hands on some of these binos I’m considering before I buy.
 

riv3rbanks

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Deep in the Heart of Texas
The spotter is a heavy addition to your pack, not comfortable for extended viewing, and requires changing your tripod configuration to use if also using for binos. That being said, it sure is nice when you need to know if something is legal before you decide to go hiking after it. While 10x binos are great for finding game and will work 80%(this number varies based on quality) of the time in identifying if it is legal or not, you are going to want that spotter just in case.

I carry a set of 10x50 vipers and a 15-45x65 viper spotter. This configuration does the job for me. Are there better optics? Of course. Do they cost a lot more? You bet. Are they worth the extra cost? That is for you to decide.

Good luck with your decision.
 

Talk2elk

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Anaconda, MT
You should have both, the best you can afford. I use my binos (10x40) way more due to the terrain I hunt here in SW MT so I would prioritize upgrading your binos first. Side note I do have a pair of Leopold 15x56 that I keep in my truck for long distance spotting while driving around. I only get out my Leopold 20x60 spotting scope for determining sex at a long distance.
 

Stocker

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If you were in the market again, would you get a more powerful set of binos that can serve dual purpose?
That’s a question I’ve thought a lot about. Go with some 16x binos. But then would I enjoy carrying them and using them? I can’t give you an answer, but I’ve thought a lot about it. I think in my ideal world I’d buy a really good set of 12x and just go. I like 10x but it’d be nice to have a little more especially with good glass.
 

Seamaster

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Feb 10, 2017
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Good 10x42 binoculars are probably the answer. Good 10X glass will let you see better than lesser quality 12X.
 

Boarmaster

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If you dont have a set of top tier 10x or 12x binos I would start there myself. I never regretted any money I spent on great optics. I do regret money spent on marginal gear over the years. But you can only buy what you can pay for. I learned to get by and save up for great gear.
 

longrunner

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Mar 2, 2019
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I recently picked up an 65 ATS, the difference between this and the Vortex's and Leupold's (older fixed powers) I have had before is night and day- clarity and brightness need to be seen to be believed.
 

Yooper906

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So little update…. I was talking to a friend about this thread and he just gave me a pair of Leica Duovids 10-15x50. They are in good shape, one eye cup has some dirt that makes it hard to twist. But after doing some research on them, it sounds like they are a damn good set of binos (much better than my current pair.)
 

Schaaf

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So little update…. I was talking to a friend about this thread and he just gave me a pair of Leica Duovids 10-15x50. They are in good shape, one eye cup has some dirt that makes it hard to twist. But after doing some research on them, it sounds like they are a damn good set of binos (much better than my current pair.)
I’d say you made out alright!
 

deer_shooter

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So little update…. I was talking to a friend about this thread and he just gave me a pair of Leica Duovids 10-15x50. They are in good shape, one eye cup has some dirt that makes it hard to twist. But after doing some research on them, it sounds like they are a damn good set of binos (much better than my current pair.)
Does your friend need another friend?

All good advice above. Top end bino's trump a spotter all the time unless your are a die hard trophy hunter/sheep hunter, IMO. With really upper end binos in 10x (or 12x) you will be amazed by what you can pick up. I bought a decent spotter a couple years ago, a Razor 22-48x65 and it stays in the truck or goes with me to the range.
 
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