January 10, 2020
Affordability and quality is what defines the new S5 ($499.99) Styrka Optics. A 10x42 binocular, the revamped S5 Series now features Styrka's SXL-MAX multi-coatings, a high-tech, broadband coating that maximizes transmission across the entire visible light spectrum. Unlike standard multi-coatings, the SLX-MAX coating does not present any peaks in the transmission of the images, meaning, all images are brightly lit and clean edge-to-edge, with true color reproduction.
Vortex Diamondback HD
For quality optics on a blue collar budget look no further than the new Diamondback HD ($269.99-$319.99) from Vortex. Available in a variety of 8x, 10x and 12x configurations, the Diamondback features Vortex’s HD optical system for improved resolution, and multiple anti-reflective coatings as well as multilayer prism coatings that enhance light transmission. A lightweight magnesium chassis provides durability, while the shock absorbing rubber-armor exterior coating gives an ergonomic feel. Like all Vortex optics, these are argon gas-purged and O-ring sealed for waterproof performance and to prevent internal fogging over a wide range of temperatures.
German Precision Optics Passion
Although relatively new to the optics area, German Precision Optics has no doubt made a splash among hunters across North America. This year GPO adds to their popular Passion line with 8X56 ($749) and 10X56 ($833) binoculars. Fully water and fog proof, both sets of optics provide exceptional clarity and maximum light transmission, thanks to GPO’s proprietary GPObright lens coating, an abbe-Koenig internal prism system and a high-transmission 56 mm objective lens system. With their large exit pupils—7mm for the 8×56 and 5.6 for 10×56—both have light-grabbing capabilities that provide extremely bright images in the lowest light conditions.
Expanding their rangefinder footprint this year, Hawke launches the all-new Vantage line. With three models to choose from, the Vantage series sports a fully multi-coated optical system with BK-7 prisms, 6x magnification and an adjustable diopter to produce both high light transmission and true color optical clarity. Additional features include Standard and Horizontal modes for those relatively straight line-of-site situations, Angle mode that compensates for those steeper shots, Rain mode which overlooks rain drops, and Hunt mode that ignores interference from blades of grass or brush. The Vantage 400 LRF reads distance out to 437 yards, while the Vantage 600 and 900 reach out to 656 and 984 respectively.
Offering precision distance with simple control features is Muddy’s new line of rangefinders. The Muddy LR650, LR850 and LR1300 feature an ABS housing and durable rubber trim with large grip pads on both sides of the chassis that provides both protection and grip. Their 6x magnification clear optic with 26mm glass lens is IP54 rated to provide protection against dust and water, plus because it offers true angle compensation as well as an integrated scan mode, users can quickly range multiple targets at any angle without needing to reactivate the laser. The LR650 ranges out to 650 yards, while the LR850 and LR1300 stretch the range to 850 and 1300 yards respectively.
Optimized for low light performance, the new Prime rangefinder series feature Ultra Wide Band Coating and Fully Multicoated elements to provide its outstanding resolution and contrast in low light conditions. The EXO Barrier coating on the lens repels water, fog, oil and dust and with Bushnell’s Angle Range Compensation coupled with scanning capabilities, you’ll get the true distance from your target even if it moves suddenly. The 1300 ($169.99) ranges out to 1,300 yards while the 1,700 ($199.99) grabs an additional 400 yards.
Vortex Razor HD 4000
The Razor HD 4000 ($729.99) is the newest member of Vortex’s expanding rangefinder line, and with the ability to reach targets out to 4,000 yards, it truly lives up to its name. With 7x magnification, the Razor HD optical system features XR Plus fully multicoated lenses that maximize light transmission to produce sharp image quality, and its Horizontal Component Distance (HCD) mode compensates for steep terrain to provide the true horizontal distance. The Ultra-hard ArmorTek exterior lens coating protects lenses from scratches and makes it easier to remove smudges, oil, and dirt and with Scan mode you can continuously update your target distance while on the move.
German Precision Optics Rangetracker 1800
The new Rangetracker 1800 ($399) from German Precision Optics incorporates state-of-the-art optical and electronic technology, wrapped into a small durable multi-use unit. With the ability to provide the precise distance from 6 to 1800 yards, the Rangetracker is ideal for both bowhunters and gun hunters alike. The high-transmission optical system features GPO’s proprietary bright lens coatings that provides exceptional clarity and brightness With both line-of-sight and/or True-range adjusted angle distance readings, you can zero in on your target, and its fast reading won’t leave you waiting. Other features include Hyperscan that provides three readings per second, Targetseeker technology that offers “best” and “last” laser hits and an outside temperature reading in either Fahrenheit or Celsius. The display is an HLDC system that allows up to 25% more light to get through the optical system, making it usable in very low-light situations as well.
Hawke Endurance ED
Every ounce counts when you’re bowhunting the backcountry, and the new 13-39x50 Endurance ED spotting scope from Hawke is a great option for lightening the load. Compact and lightweight, this unit sports extra-low dispersion (ED) glass that reduces distortion, a BAK-4 Porro prism for intense contrast and color transfer and a Dielectric coating in the prism and lenses that increase light reflectivity to further sharpen the images. The Endurance ED is nitrogen purged, water and fog proof, and also features a course/fine dual-focus knob to fine-tune your viewing. Quality meets affordability with the new Endurance ED, and with a lifetime warranty it’s hard to go wrong.