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Zeiss 10x42 Conquest HD
Paul R. from Bigfork, MT
I recently Zeiss 10x42 Conquest HD Binoculars. They arrived in perfect order and they were given as a gift to my partner Margaret. We used them for the first time on Sunday, 10 Jan 2016 near the Ninepipes Wildlife Area south of Ronan Montana and viewed several raptors. We were trying to find Snowy Owls but instead were treated with a rare sighting of a Northern Hawk Owl. I own a pair of Zeiss Jena 7x40 with hardened exterior casing which I purchased at an East German State Owned Optik Shop in East Berlin in 1984. They were favored by many of the security forces of East Germany at that time. I still cherish them and use them. They were the inspiration for getting the Conquest for Margaret. I will say however that the changing nature of optics has made it clear to me that these contemporary Zeiss are even better than the historic version I sling around.
could be better
ALAN P. from Ithaca, NY
Good but not great… optics are crisp but construction leaves much to be desired. Had to replace the eyecups 2x in one year (thin plastic, cracks easily) and the binocs loosened up after only 9 mo of use and so had to be sent in for repairs. That takes a LONG time w/Zeiss -- most repairs have to go to Germany.
Kyri F. from Barstow, CA
I upgraded to these binoculars recently and have found them to be a huge improvement on my previous set. In particular, they draw in a lot of light, meaning birds in the shadow of trees are much more easily seen. I do find them to be somewhat heavy, but it's worth it.
Zeiss Conquest HD 10x42
John S. from East Providenxe, RI
The optical quality of these binoculars is excellent. The ergonomics of the binoculars is very agreeable. The field of view is excellent.
Zeiss 10x42 Conquest HD Binocular
Jason L. from Elgin, TX
I bought the Zeiss Conquest a few weeks ago. I've taken them out birding a few times so far, and I'm very happy with them. I feel like I'm getting a very crisp, true image under all conditions. They feel very solid and well made, without being too heavy, and they're very comfortable in my hands. These are the "mid-range" Zeiss binoculars. I'm sure there are advantages to having the top-of-the line Victory model, but are they really worth spending about three times as much? That's an individual decision, but in my case, I'd rather put that money toward at trip to see some fantastic birds!
Christophe F. from Brazil
The view and the quality of the image are very good, it´s amazing...
Zeiss 10x42 Conquest
George from Colorado
Of the big three manufacturer's models, only Zeiss provides this full size quality at a modest price point. The 10x42 HD Conquest supplies all I need for a rugged, high end glass. The diopter control is excellent, the center focus is excellent, the resolution and edge sharpness are excellent. The only weakness of the total package are the lens covers- not very usable. But that is a very minor, almost non-issue for me.
I was so excited until....
Jeff from California
I was super excited for these binoculars, having never spent so much for superior optics. I was not disappointed with the optics but never am until the lens coatings start to fail. Unfortunately the very first day I brought these into the field the plastic eye piece adjuster broke. I don't even know what happened. I looked down and there were pieces of plastic sitting on top of the lens. I just don't understand why companies (especially of zeisses supposed superiority) would ever use plastic for the eyepiece adjuster. This is the most vulnerable part of the binos. I will return and look for a brand that uses metal.
Matt L. from Dallas
I recently bought the Zeiss 10x42 Conquest hd Binoculars from Eagle optics and I want to say that I am extremely happy with the purchase. I have a friend that has both a set of these and some Swarovski 10x 50's. We hunt together and bird watch in between down time both in & out of the blind. I know he won't allow it but I will tell you these are just as good as the Swarovski's in my opinion.
What I like best is the immediate clear visual you get when a bird flys in and you throw them up to your eyes. They are worth it and I am very happy I got them. Thanks my fellow German friends, Matt Lohoefer
Zeiss 10x42 Conquest HD Binoculars
Sally W. from Brockville, ON, Canada
I LOVE these bins. The colour & clarity are superb. As someone who is developing cataracts, I can now find & see the bird! Awesome.
Finally splurged and I am so happy!
Susan B. from Charleston, SC
I have been a birdwatcher for over 30 years yearning for a really nice pair of binoculars, but I just could not afford to spend the money to buy the Zeiss binos I have always wanted. When I received a generous Christmas bonus, I shopped around for good quality binoculars in the $300 - $700 price range agonizing over which ones I should purchase. I finally bit the bullet, spending more than I initially intended and more than I ever thought I would for a pair of binoculars - but I am so happy that I did. I do not think I will ever regret a penny that I paid for my new Zeiss Conquest HD 10X42 binoculars. I have had them for less than a month, but I am able to see so much better than I have ever seen through a pair of binoculars in my 30+ years of experience birdwatching. What a joy!
Crisp and sharp
Rolland W. from Bellwood, IL
Well, I had a chance to use the Zeiss binoculars I purchased last month. The 10 x 42 binoculars were light enough to hold steady (no shakiness). I was able to count 10 eagles in one field of view about 300 yards away. The focusing is crisp and sharp. Of course I will use them for more than watching birds. I'm a train buff; I'll use them to watch trains from a distance. I'm pleased with them and would recommend them to the occasional birder.
M Grant from New York State
Excellent binos, the best value I could find for the price. Best glass, closest focus and largest field of view for the price.
Paul B. from Johnson City, TN
the optics on the Zeiss 10x42 binoculars is outstanding. The scene is very clear and the lighting is very bright.
Best Quality-Price Ratio for High End Optics
Nathaniel G. from Puerto Rico
I learned very early on my birding journey is that the quality of your optics will make a great difference. So I started with the best I could afford the Eagle Optics Ranger 8x42 Binocular. Three years later and they are still great, but I find myself wanting more distance and details. After a lot of research I decided on the Zeiss 10x42 Conquest HD Binocular. I've been using them for a month and a half and I love them. Gorgeous clear view of a Golden-winged Warbler with the following conditions: evening, tall tree, cloudy day in Puerto Rico confirms that I made the right choice. You can expect wide viewing angle, smooth focus and very sturdy construction. The only con is that is a bit heavy compared to my Ranger. In a final note my wife took possession of my Eagle Optics Ranger 8x42 Binocular and they will be on use for a long time to come.
Very good glass for elk hunting
Mike M. from Castle Rock, CO.
I got these to replace some 8x45 Japanese Binos that were decent, but did not have the resolution I needed to determine if I was seeing bedded elk or buff-colored rocks at long distances. All my buddies use the high-dollar Swarovskis, but I just can't justify that kind of money. I think these offer a good value for those of us that really ought to be hunting with poorer friends. The Zeiss performed better in low light conditions than my older ones even though they're 3mm smaller. I think the focus works well and is fast once you get the feel for it, small adjustments are key. The only thing I don't like about them is the lens caps, and that's a common complaint. The top caps are marginal, and the bottom caps are completely worthless, falling off at the slightest contact. Luckily I had heard this before my hunt so I bought a bino pack that fits on my chest and completely encloses them. This way I don't even bother with the goofy ones Zeiss provides. For $1000.00 you would think the highly touted German engineering could have come up with a better design. Caps aside, I have a lot of confidence in these as I can identify things much better than with my old ones.
Terrific Binocular for an affordable price!
Gabriel M. from Shenandoah Valley, VA
I had been using Eagle Optics Ranger 8x42 and Nikon Monarch 10x42 (both are great, don't get me wrong) but I needed something MORE. The Zeiss Conquest 10x40 are fabulous. Sure, they aren't Swarovski EL, Leica Ultravid, or Zeiss Victory but they are fully acceptable (and more) for what I need (primarily hawk watching but also general birding and wildlife watching). GO ZEISS GO!
Steve Y. from Ozark, MO.
All I can say is WOW. I have been using a $300 pair of Nikons and have enjoyed them. However a year ago I looked through my brothers Zeiss and knew from that moment that I had to have a pair. I had to save for a few months to get them, but its been worth it. I can't say enough good things about Eagle Optics, fantastic service and the only bino store for me. If your in the market for new binos, Zeiss is it.
Steven Y. from Ozark, MO.
I ordered these Monday morning, they arrive by 9am Tuesday. Great service from Eagle Optics. I looked through a pair of these last spring, a knew I had to have a pair. I have been using a $300 pair of Nikons that have served well, however the Conquest hd blows them away. I had to save for a year and it was worth every penny. I'm a Zeiss fan for life. Thanks Eagle Optics for the great service and advice.
The King of all Binocs!
Chloe W. from Murfreesboro, TN
I got a pair of these for Christmas and they are AMAZING! Nikon doesn't even compare! I actually think there is no difference between Swarovski and Zeiss (except for the fact that Zeiss averages cheaper).
This Zeiss is Nice!
Russ T. from Boulder, Co.
For the past five years I have used a great pair of Swift Audubon 8.5x44 binoculars. Since much of my birding occurs around bodies of water, however, I felt the need for something that could bring the birds a little closer. I read all the reviews of mid and high-priced 10x optics and settled on the Zeiss 10x42 Conquest HD.Boy,am I glad I did!
The lens bring in much more light than my old pair, and the resolution is phenomenal, resulting in a crisp, bright picture. In addition, the Zeiss focus wheel needs only fractions of an inch to move from near to distant birds. I was somewhat worried about more difficulty in locating birds by going to the 10x, but the Zeiss offer a terrific field of view and seem to rise naturally to the eyes. I could not be happier with my purchase and recommend these fine optics to anyone with a wish to upgrade.
Harland from College Station, TX
Just prior to a recent birding trip to the Rio Grande Valley, I purchased a pair of Zeiss 10x42 Conquest HD binoculars. I have been going to the Valley birding for many years and saw bird details like never before! I considered upgrading my binos for several years and could not be more satisfied with the price/performance ratio of the Zeiss Conquest. In addition to the excellent optics for the price, the balance and operation of the Zeiss Conquest are outstanding. I did a substantial amount of research and narrowed down my options to about 5 binoculars before calling Eagle Optics and received excellent information from them. I highly recommend the Conquest HD and could not be more satisfied with the service from Eagle Optics.
Eleazar A. from CA
As expected, this Zeiss pair of binoculars was an excellent (though quite pricey) choice. Eagle Optics was no less impressive. Five stars all around. However, the objective lens rubber cover just won't stay in place. Any suggestions to fix it? Also, there was no string thing (ike the objective lens cover) that secured the rubber eye lens cover to keep it from being misplaced. Wonder if that was missed during packaging. I will definitely recommend this product.
Tyler from Redmond, Wa.
I own a pair of 8x30 zeiss conquest binoculars and my dad has a pair of 15x45 zeiss conquest binoculars and i have to say that i am very impressed with the of the performance of the 10x42 conquest HD binoculars. crisp, clear picture in the early morning and at dusk and during the day...... awesome. i am a hunter and a bird watcher and this pair of binoculars work great for both. wide field of view, fit nicely in the hands and smooth focus nob. well worth the money. great $100 rebate before the end of 2012.
Dan from Ramsey, MN, USA
My first impression upon receiving my Zeiss Conquest HD 10x40 binocs was Wow, these are sharp!
My reference for comparison: my wife and I each own a pair of Zeiss 10x40 B/GATs (1988, $1085, considered at the time to be among the best optics available) which we mainly use for birding, and a pair of Eagle Optics 10x42 Ranger PCs (2003, $399) which we bought for their ability to focus down to 5 feet for butterflies, dragonflies, etc. I’ve also tried other folks’ Leicas and other brands.
In side-by-side comparison the Conquests are, as expected, sharper than the Rangers, and they close-focus to 7 feet, which is acceptable and much better than the older Zeiss’s limit of 16. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the Conquests are not only significantly brighter than the B/GATs, but they are also noticeably sharper -- every detail of a bird’s plumage looks incredibly crisp. (To go beyond this level of sharpness is to reach or exceed the limits of human vision; in the independent on-line review I checked before purchase, various brands were mounted on a tripod, photographed through, and the pics enlarged 32x for analysis; they found that the Conquests were nearly as sharp as several manufacturers’ $2000+ binocs, including Zeiss’s Victory model.)
Eyecups: with my deep-set eyes and thick glasses, I now use binocs with the cups all the way in, and I’ve never been completely satisfied due to inadequate eye relief. With the Rangers I receive very slightly less than the full circle; with the older Zeiss, it’s much worse. The Conquests get me to full circle, just barely, in the right eye, and almost there for the left. Another millimeter of two of eye relief would be better. [As a side note, manufacturers’ specifications help but don’t tell the whole story; relief is measured from the eyepiece glass but usable relief for eyeglass wearers is reduced by how much the eyecup protrudes in front of the eyepiece.]
Depth of field and focusing: Even at close focus, the zone of sharpness is longer than a songbird. Zeiss has a reputation for narrow DoF, but I’ve never noticed a problem in the field. With any binocs, I usually keep one finger on the focus knob to be prepared for movement or the next great sighting. The older Zeiss B/GATs require only three-quarters turn of the knob to go from infinity to close focus of 16 feet. The Rangers focus to 5 feet and take one-and-a-half turns. The Zeiss Conquest focuses to about 7 feet in 1.2 turns; this middle ground feels familiar and works well.
Chromatic aberration: if I intentionally shift my eye off center from the eyepiece and look toward the edge of the field of view – an unnatural act -- I see a very narrow blue band on the outer edge. In normal use I don’t notice this, nor do I see it when stargazing.
Weight: The Conquest 10x40s are heavy, a couple of ounces heavier even than the older Zeiss B/GATs. After five or ten hours of trekking off-trail, that’s a lot of weight on the neck. At age 56, rather than join the chorus of geezers misdirecting newbies toward 8x products for birding, I’ll continue my practice of replacing the original neckstrap with an over-the shoulders binocular harness, available from any of several manufacturers.
The eyepiece cover works as intended. I never use objective lens covers, so I haven’t tried them.
There were no manufacturing or packaging defects in the unit I bought. The binocs come with Zeiss’s lifetime warranty and 5-year no-fault return policy. My wife, who uses the eyecups fully extended, liked them well to enough to buy a pair for herself. I would recommend these binocs to anyone.
I really wanted to like these binoculars...but....
KGM from Alaska
I really wanted to like these binoculars...but....
I opened the box and there was the Snazzy binocular box. I opened up the nice packaging to find them flopping around inside. They are supposed to sit in the middle of the box in a nice cardboard display. The cardboard failed and they must of been flopping around in there. No lens covers. Unprotected. I looked them over. No scratches they looked fine, but I was worried.
To make sure that nothing was flopping around on the inside of the bino, I held them up and looked through the Objective lens. They looked clean, but I noticed something strange about the image in one barrel. There was a straight hairline going from one edge to the other. Not a scratch, but a seam of some sort. I'm not a binocular scientist, so I figured, "maybe it's supposed to be like that"...but I was worried.
Annoying objective lens cover. The objective lens housing isn't round, which I don't mind; however that means you can't use normal lens covers. Which I don't mind either, except the covers they designed for them won't stay on. Having a cover that doesn't stay on, is like having no cover at all. I had no faith in them. Good luck finding an aftermarket lens cover for that barrel design.
Eyecups. All the way in, I was getting black outs. At their first click stop, I was loosing FOV. Why sell a binocular advertising FOV with eyecups that don't have precision click stops to achieve it. If your eye relief magically corresponds with the the two intermediate click stops, you have nothing to worry about.
Now on to the major problems.
After adjusting my eye relief, the first thing I saw when I looked through them was......Chromatic Aberration. In an HD? Yes. The center of the image was fine, but there was blue halo around the outside edge. It was if there was a blue neon sign just out of sight causing lens flare. Imagine taking a binocular view, printing it on some photo paper and then pulling out a blue highlighter and drawing a ring around the outside edge. I wasn't even looking for it, but there it was. If I looked at a bird and lifted my bino up so the bird was on the edge of the field, a blue wash overtook it.
With all this being said, with all the negative things I brought up...Once I looked at a bird and brought it into focus...wow...amazing.
I saw things on birds I never noticed with my $300-ish binos. Crumbs on the beak, feather groupings. When I looked at a Dark-eyed junco, I could almost see an iris. I let my friend look through them, and he said," You could feel things with these binoculars." That's what it felt like. You could see the textures of the bird feathers. A redpoll landed about 7ft away. It was like a microscope. If that bird had lice, I would of known about it.
When you spend $1000 and want a $2000 view, I expected there to be some compromise. If I looked for CA on the edge, I saw it. When I was looking at a bird, I forgot about it. My compromise...stop looking for CA. Even the annoying lens cover wasn't that big of a deal. If they do fall off and I scratch the lens, Zeiss has a no fault policy for 5 years... and after 5 years maybe they'll come up with better lens covers. The FOV? I was missing some due to the click stops, but it was kinda blue anyways, so why miss it.
I definitely wasn't going back to my $300-ish binocular view over these problems. Besides I was going to the East coast for first time, and was going to see a lot of new life birds. With these binos, I could really see them. These binos require a lot of mind-over-matter. If you don't mind, the problems don't matter.
Besides , they melted in the hands. I never though about them once, ergonomically. The focus wheel was superb. It was hard to let them go...but I did.
The deal killer......
Depth of focus was too shallow. I didn't notice it at first. Whenever I looked at a bird I had to re-focus. My finger never left the focus wheel. I don't think there was a time that I lifted the binos and saw a bird that was in focus. See a bird, then focus, see a bird then re-focus. I'd even have to re-focus on the Junco when it was running around on the ground. Times that by 50 and at the end of the day....eye strain. Times that by a couple days and I had to return them. I had to return that great view.
The story has an happy ending. I talked to Eagle Optics (great customer service), and they told me to return them no problem and talked with me about binos. I thought I'd order different binos from them when I got back from my trip( leaving the next day.) I ordered a different model bino and they're going to send them to my friend on the East Coast so I won't miss any good views. I'll be able to use them to see my new life birds! Way to go Eagle Optics!
Epilogue: The Conquest 10x42 HD binos might of been a tad (and I mean slight) dimmer then the Alphas (maybe.) Looking at birds with sand or gravelly backgrounds was not as nice as looking at birds among green leaves (still sharp both ways)
If you're not going to be focusing them very much, you might like them.
Even though the depth of field is very shallow, the focus knob is superb and will get you in focus no problem.