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Swarovski 10x40 Habicht

I made my mind up to buy some quality optiks after hunting with a mate Jewfish who had a pair of Leica Geovids, in the Landsborough River, Haast, May 2006. Seeing as $1500 NZD was my limit, Leicas were out of the question, but the Swarovski Habichts were definately realistic.

My pick of the Swarovski models was the Habicht 10x40 model, partly because they were cheaper than the EL and SLC counterparts. And I certainly didn't want a pocket pair; I figured if I was going to spend good money, I'd put it toward a good pair. So I bought the Habichts 10x40. I happily handed my old 8x42 bushnell H2O binoculars onto a friend.

Optically the Habichts deliver superb light gathering ability, and high-definition clarity that makes glassing faces, game and scenery most enjoyable. Their porro-prism design adds an extra reflective mirror which enhances its light gathering performance. This makes glassing for game possible until the fading moments of daylight, and early the next morning.

Ergonomically the Habichts are not as compact and easy to stow away in your pocket as the SLC or EL models. However, they are lightly constructed using very robust alloy-housing, furnished with a leather exterior for grip, or rubber exterior for durability. Be prepared to pay $50-70 NZD more for the rubber exterior model, known as Habichts 10x40 W.

Performance-wise the Habichts have been outstanding. I have used them tahr hunting during Winter in snowy conditions, and found them to excellent at spotting game high in the bluff systems. Some of the animals I have spotted from well over 1.5km away, which I otherwise would never have been able to do with the old bushnells.

They have been magic for glassing chamois bedding down in the scrub and tussock chutes during the day in spring and summer. Chamois are not the biggest of game species, so it helps having binoculars that can deliver high power with undeniable clarity.

Much the same for glassing red deer. I find the 10x power optical ideal for identifying stags in the open tops, and assessing their trophy quality. If the stags are too far away, this requires the use of the spotting scope, but generally the Habichts 10x40's give you a fair idea on whether its a trophy or not.

Overall Rating: [These Habichts are highly recommended]

Light gathering 9/10

Clarity 9/10

Ergonomics 8/10

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