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This sounds too good to be true. Vortex takes its already award-winning Viper binocular and adds High Density (HD) extra-low dispersion glass. With these high-performance additions to the already bright, rugged, lightweight, and affordable binocular, you win big when you take the Viper HD into the field or forest. Vortex's XP engineering anchors internal prisms in place and improves the Viper's ability to withstand rough use. Protected with rubber armoring, waterproofing, fogproofing, and backed by the Vortex VIP warranty, the Viper HD is certain to perform for generations.
High Definition (HD) extra-low dispersion Glass
Enhances resolution, color, and contrast.
XR Fully Multi-coated Lenses
Increase light transmission with multiple anti-reflective coatings on all air-to-glass surfaces.
Enhances resolution and contrast through roof prisms.
Dielectric Prism Coatings
Optimize light transmission.
Appreciated for a streamlined shape and durability.
Provides a secure, non-slip grip.
Twist up and down for comfortable viewing with or without eyeglasses.
Center Focus Wheel
Adjusts both binocular barrels at the same time.
Locking Right Eye Diopter
Adjusts for differences in a user's eyes. Located by the right eyepiece.
Can be mounted using standard ¼-inch threading. Adapter sold separately.
Optics are sealed with O-rings to prevent moisture, dust, and debris from getting inside the binocular.
Barrels are filled with argon gas to inhibit internal fogging.
I first tried the 8x32 Viper(non-HD)binoculars because of their weight and their smaller size was just made for my hands but couldn't live with the poor eye-relief. Last year I lost a $300 pair of eye-glasses when I took them off to use brand X binoculars with no eye-relief and this was a major consideration. In the process I discovered that for some reason all 32mm binos are weak in that department so I exchanged them for the Viper HD 8x42, a totally painless process thanks to the good folks at EO. I've used my Viper HDs now almost everyday in a wide variety of lighting conditions and I'm totally in love with these wonderful optics.
In the process of making this investment I tried dozens of different brands and models including the alpha models but kept coming back to Vortex because to my eye each of their models consistently had the best performance at it's price point and by far the best warranty on the market. In the end the Viper HD 8x42 was the best fit for my particular use. If you are in the market for reasonably priced, excellent quality, binoculars I highly recommend that you familiarize yourself with the whole Vortex line. You'll probably your own pair to fall in love with.
Pros: Light weight for their size. Sharp view with good contrast and color rendition. Good depth of field so you aren't constantly fiddling with the focus. Close focus. The do exactly what the specifications say. Good eye-relief. Excellent warranty.
In addition to this exchange purchase I also recently bought a scope that turned out to be defective. The Eagle Optics and Vortex people have been totally reliable and have gone to extra lengths to make things right. To my surprise they even shipped the replacement scope before receiving the one I'd sent back.
Cons: If I didn't wear glasses I would have kept the 8x32s but I've quickly gotten used to the extra weight which is only 4oz after all.
The field of view isn't as wide as the Talon HD series but the Vortex Talon's weigh more and there are compromises in all optics.
Yes I'd certainly recommend the Viper HD binoculars for purchase but you may also want to try out the other Vortex models and chose the one that feels right for you.
Vortex Viper HD
Jim from Ohio
Very good view, good close focus for butterflies, and lightweight. Eagle Optics great as usual.
Charles from Raleigh, NC
I've had my Viper HD for about one month now. With each use I am more impressed. Quality construction, smooth focus knob and diopter adjustment, nice lens caps, and great optics. I have two other bino's: a compact Leica Ultravid 8x20, and a Nikon Ocean Pro 7x50. All very different, and used for different purposes, but I can say with confidence that the image quality of the Viper HD is considerably better than the Ocean Pro (no surprise) and at least as good as the Leica. The smaller Leica of course does not do as well in low light situations, but even in bright light the image from the Vortex seems slightly superior to my eye.
I wanted to get a quality bino from a US company. The Viper HD is just that.
Just What the Doctor Ordered
Lenge H. from New York, NY
I purchased my Viper HD 8x42's for a birding trip to Costa Rica; they are my first pair of "serious" binoculars, trading up from a small pair of Bushnells that were fine for Central Park-- or so I thought! By the end of the first day of my trip they had more than justified their price. Their light-gathering capabilities were invaluable in the rainforest, and their light weight meant I was never aware of the fact that I had them around my neck all day, without using a shoulder harness. Also I have problems with my wrists, which had made using my SLR camera difficult, but the Vipers didn't strain my wrists at all. The image is so sharp, it really does look like HD. I haven't used a pair of higher-end binoculars, but in this price range I doubt you could do better than these.
Excellent bins for birding
Robert A. from Bridgewater, NJ
I am a new birder and have recently purchased the Viper HD 8x42s. The optics are bright and sharp and the colors are vivid. The speed of the focus wheel is just right for me and its operation is smooth. The overall quality of the bin is excellent. The only change I would make would be to provide a little more minimum interpupillary distance. I have a small face and they just fit me.