Orion Giant 16x80

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Brand and Model:Orion Giant 16x80
Price ($USD):$399.00
Attributes:un-checked Waterproof checked Armored
Objective Lens Size:80 mm
Magnification:16 x
Prism Type:Roof
Coatings:Fully Multi-Coated
Field of View:3.5 degrees
Eye Relief:16 mm
Near Focus:65 ft
Weight (lbs):59oz
Dimensions (w/h/d):11.5" x 9.25"
Description:Imagine a Turbocharger for Your Vision...
...that’s what looking through an Orion Giant binocular is like. Whether your interest is terrestrial nature study, low-light surveillance, or astronomical viewing, these light-gathering Goliaths will make a BIG impression. Their tremendous light grasp brings incredible detail into view.

Orion Giant 80mm Binoculars
If you’ve been using 50mm binoculars for stargazing, as many folks do, get ready to gasp when you see how 156% greater light collection enhances the visible starscape. Your Giant will open up the skies to reveal a cornucopia of stellar clusterings and nebulous knots. Giant binoculars are great for use by themselves or as a second instrument to a telescope.

Orion Giant binoculars offer maximum image brightness, thanks to high-refractive-index BAK-4 glass prisms and the highest level of antireflection coating you can get. Every air-to-glass surface is precision multi-coated, not just one or two surfaces, as with some manufacturers’ “fully multi-coated” binoculars. Rich contrast is ensured by glare threaded baffling of the optical barrels.

Giants also boast long eye relief. The high-power 16x and 20x models have eye relief of 16mm and 15mm, respectively. That means easier positioning of the eyes at the eyepieces to see the full field of view, and allows eyeglass wearers to keep their specs on while viewing.

Each binocular is tested prior to sale on a laser collimator to insure proper optical alignment. A sturdy, hinged, metal bridge between the objective cells provides added rigidity and insures that the mechanical axes of the binocular remain perfectly aligned. Smooth central focusing and a right diopter adjustment keep images in sharp focus. The binocular body features a black, textured finish for a comfortable grip.

Giant 80mm binoculars come with an L-adapter for mounting on a camera tripod. Also included are a neck strap, lens caps, and durable, hard carrying case with retractable handle. Five-year limited warranty.

16x80 Giant
The 5mm exit pupil is well matched for observation from moderately dark skies or suburban locations. Higher contrast will also be noted in most situations, so objects will appear more distinct against background sky. 16mm eye relief, 16x magnification, 3.5° field of view. Weighs 5 lbs., 9 oz.

20x80 Giant
Star clusters, nebulas, even the Moon take on a whole new look as you tease out subtle features. The 20x magnification reveals incredible detail. Eye relief of 15mm is quite good for a 20x binocular. 3.5° field of view, 4.0mm exit pupil. Weighs 5 lbs., 9 oz.
9 oz.

Vote Highlights Vote
Orion Giant 16x80
This is a comparison between the Orion Giant 16x80 and the Oberwerk 15x70, (Oberwerk’s $149, Orion’s $399). When it came down to choice, I decided the 16x80’s had much too narrow a useable field of view. The 15x70’s, although not as precisely sharp, performed as equally as could be expected considering aperture and magnification and they had so much more useable field of view that they would be easier to use on more objects in the long run. My opinion, based on these test results, indicates that the 16x80’s did not provide what I was looking for.

Out of the box, the 16 x 80’s were really impressive and were my strong favorites. I expected the Orion 16 x 80’s, with a higher quality of build, better bracing, laser collimated optics and a larger aperture would win hands down over the Oberwerk 15 x 70’s. The extras that come with the 16 x 80’s, the tripod adapter and the hard carry case, are probably valued at about $30 to $50 if sold separately. Shipping on the 70’s was $8 and on the 80’s it was $21.

The 70’s have a nice hand fit and comfortable feel against the eyecup. The 80’s seem built much more solidly, but the 70’s were not cheap by any means. They are marginally hand hold-able whereas the 80’s are far too heavy to hand hold. Although it was difficult to hold the 70’s still, I was able to daytime view for short periods and it was easy enough to brace these while hand holding. On the 70’s focus was achievable while holding although stillness of the image was a problem. On the 80’s, the focus dial cannot be reached while holding the binoculars and focus cannot be adjusted successfully without the binoculars being still. Therefore, the 80’s must be mounted to adjust focus.

The inter-pupilary pivot hinge motion was very good although very tight on the 16x80’s due to the brace hinge at the objective lens. The 15x70’s were fine. The eyepiece bar on the 15x70’s had some slop, allowing it to rock in & out. However, in both binoculars the eyepieces moved in & out equally at all times when focusing and held focus under normal pressure. Both had a focus mechanism that operated smoothly with moderate pressure throughout the entire dial range with no bumps, slip or image shift.

For me, even with my glasses on, the 15x70’s required a setting in the minus diopter range to focus. Without glasses, the 15x70’s did not have sufficient minus diopter adjustment to reach focus for my 20/200 right eye nearsightedness. A 2nd pair of Oberwerk 15 x 70’s had a hair more minus diopter focus than the 1st pair I tested. The 80’s had more than enough diopter range with or without glasses. Exit Pupil Image distance was measured in both at 17mmfrom the lens. Usable Eye Relief, the distance back to the eye guard with eyecups folded down, was 15mm for the 15x70’s and only 10mm for the 16x80’s.

The 15x70’s did not show any light loss due to impairment of the light path. The 16x80’s have a light loss calculated at about 5% due to Vignetting.

I have noted that my eyes do need to pull together the images in the 15 x 70’s. In the 80’s, the images seem to be dead on. However, the 15x70’s have a collimation adjustment screw, the 80’s do not.

I expected the narrower field of view in the 80’s wouldn’t make that much of a difference and the slightly higher power and larger aperture seemed to offer everything I wanted. It didn’t turn out that way. The field measured FOV in the 80’s is 3.3*. The field measured FOV in the 70’s is 4.4*. That’s nearly twice as much area of sky.

Overall image quality in the 80’s was sharper on-axis, but the 70’s were very close and the 70’s had a sharp image over a much wider field of view. This made a huge difference in the usable field of view, in favor of the 70’s by a very wide margin. The 80’s were rated Poor between 60% and 70% out from the center. Images between 70% and 80% out became grossly distorted, reducing the fov to a useable limit of 2.3*. The 70’s were rated Poor at 80% out from center. They weren’t Bad until near the very edge, reducing the fov to a useable limit of 4.0*. That’s three times the useable area of sky.

Brightness was sufficient in the 70’s to see a star like core in eg M81 with a broad surrounding glow, a pear shaped eg M51 with the south member larger and brighter, and a bright core on gc M13 with fainter circular outer extension. The 80’s showed M13 with a large bright core with a slightly dimmer outer glow and M51 had slightly more defined shape with the south member more prominent. The 80’s may have had a brighter image on those faint or diffuse objects that needed brightness to be seen well.

I noticed extremely sharp images from both the 70’s and the 80’s on the moon in high contrast situations. I was able to easily let my vision wander around and see hundreds of clearly defined craters and mountains all along the terminator, with both the shadow side and the lit side very prominent.

The 70’s and the 80’s split fairly even doubles, several in the range between 20” down to 14”, with a slight edge in performance going to the 80’s. The 80’s had a very nice star image that could be focused precisely. Both had a problem splitting doubles where the components varied widely in magnitude or where the primary was very bright.

Both the 70’s and 80’s exhibited considerably curvature. It could be noticed at 20% out from center and at 50% out from center that straight vertical objects were significantly curved outward to the point of distraction. This defect was not noticed during any nighttime dark sky viewing.

The 80’s showed a light fringe around Venus, but it was acceptable. Also, the 80’s show a blue-green fringe around the leading edge of the half moon. The 70’s showed a very unpleasant broad yellow border around the leading edge of the half moon. This would sometimes disappear as I moved my eye around the field. The 80’s showed no apparent color fringing on bright stars. The 70’s seemed to show a very slight color fringe only on Vega.


Overall Rating: 7
Optics:7 Value:7
Weight: 10 (Trustworthy Vote)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=111122

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