10 x 42mm Spirit ED

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This 10x42mm Vanguard Spirit ED waterproof and fogproof roof prism binocular offers very good high power performance at a down-to-earth price. It uses ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass for excellent color fidelity and contrast. This high power binocular weighs only 22.6 ounces, so it’s easy to carry for all-day birding across fields, marshes, and estuaries. Close focus is 9.2’, making it quite usable for close-in warbler, woodland, and backyard birding, as well as long distance observing.

The Vanguard 10x42mm Spirit ED has very low chromatic aberration (spurious color or color fringing), with none visible across the central three-quarters of the field. Astigmatism and geometric distortion (pincushioning) are low, resulting in images that stay usably sharp across virtually the entire field. Overall, this 10x42mm Vanguard Spirit ED gives you a true-to-life high power view that is a pleasure to use during extended observing sessions. This is a binocular most birders would be happy to take into the field. 

Features of this binocular . . .
  • Roof prism optics. Light-weight H-body roof prism body is comfortable to hold for long periods. High quality BaK4 prisms for high light transmission.
  • ED glass optics. Extra-low dispersion glass for true-color views that are life-like and essentially free from color fringing.
  • Fully multicoated optics. Multilayer V-Max antireflection coatings on all air-to-glass surfaces for minimal light loss and bright images.
  • Phase-coated prisms. Special phase-correcting coatings applied to the roof prisms help reveal additional color and detail, particularly in the shadowed areas of a silhouetted or backlit bird.
  • Waterproof. O-ring sealed and nitrogen-purged to be waterproof and fogproof in all climate conditions.
  • Armor. Lightly textured black rubber armor with molded-in thumb rests absorbs noise and shock and provides a good grip when wet.
  • Twist-up eyecups. A quarter turn of the rubber-rimmed eyecups extends the eyecups for non-eyeglass use and retracts them into the binocular body for use with glasses.
  • Good eye relief. Eye relief is 16mm for essentially unvignetted eyeglass/sunglass use for most observers.
  • Wide field of view. The field is 6° (314’ at 1000 yards).
  • Fast close focusing. Less than three-quarters of a turn of the comfortably-large ribbed center focus knob moves briskly from a close focus of 9.2 feet out to the horizon.
  • Rotary diopter correction. A continuously variable diopter ring on the right eyepiece (with a +/- 4 diopter range) allows you to match the binocular optics precisely to your individual eyesight for a sharp image.
  • Supplied accessories. The supplied 1.5” wide padded neck strap makes this lightweight Vanguard Spirit ED binocular comfortable to carry during all-day birding sessions. Tethered, but removable, flip-down rubber objective lens covers and an eyepiece rainguard protect the optics. A concealed 1/4”-20 thread adapter socket is provided in the center hinge for using an optional tripod adapter to mount the binocular on a camera tripod for extended hands-free observing. The supplied soft case is made of lightly padded water-shedding Cordura-type nylon. It has a belt loop and 3/4" wide nylon shoulder strap.
Optical Type:
The optical design of a binocular or spotting scope. A binocular can be either a porro prism (whose objective lenses are off-set and spaced further apart than the eyepieces) or a roof prism (whose objective lenses are in line with the eyepieces). A spotting scope can be either a porro prism or roof prism refractor or a catadioptric (a combination of lenses, mirrors, and prisms).
Roof Prism
Field of view:
The field of view (FOV) is the amount of observable world one can see at any given moment.
Field of view 1000 yards:
Exit Pupil:
The circular image or beam of light formed by the eyepiece of a telescope. To take full advantage of a scope's light-gathering capacity, the diameter of an eyepiece exit pupil should be no larger than the 7mm diameter of your eye's dark-adapted pupil, so that all of the light collected by the telescope enters your eye. (The eyepiece exit pupil diameter is found by dividing the eyepiece focal length by the telescope focal ratio.) Your eye's ability to dilate declines with increasing age (to a dark-adapted pupil of about 5mm by age 50 or so). For those in this age group, eyepieces with exit pupils larger than their eyes can dilate to simply waste their telescope's light-gathering capacity, as some of the scope's light will fall on their iris instead of entering their eye.
Relative Brightness:
A number used to compare the brightness of binoculars or spotting scopes of similar magnification. The relative brightness is determined by squaring the diameter of the exit pupil. The larger the relative brightness number, the brighter the image.
Twilight Factor:
A number used to compare the effectiveness of binoculars or spotting scopes used in low light. The twilight factor is found by multiplying the size of the objective lens (in mm) by the magnification and then finding the square root of that result. The larger the twilight factor, the more detail you can see in low light. A twilight factor of 17 or better if usually required for reasonable low light use.
Eye Relief:
Eye relief is the distance from the last surface of the eye lens of an eyepiece to the plane behind the eyepiece where all the light rays of the exit pupil come to a focus and the circular image is formed, sometimes called the “Ramsden Disk.” This is where your eye should be positioned to see the full field of view of the eyepiece. If you must wear glasses because of astigmatism, you’ll usually need at least 15mm of eye relief or longer if you want to see the full field of view with your glasses on.

A note on our eye relief figures: Quite often, our eye relief figures will differ from those of the manufacturer. This is because we measure the “usable” eye relief, while the manufacturers specify their usually-longer (but technically correct) “designed” eye relief.

The eye lens of the eyepiece is normally recessed below the rubber eyeguard or rubber rim of the eyepiece to keep the lens from being scratched during use. An eyepiece might have a “designed” eye relief of 15mm (and the eye relief will truly measure 15mm from the eye lens to where the image forms). However, if the eye lens is recessed 3mm below the eye guard, the Ramsden Disk forms only 12mm above the eyepiece body (the 15mm “designed” eye relief, less the 3mm of eye relief made unusable by having the eye lens recessed into the body of the eyepiece). This “usable” eye relief of 12mm (measured from the rolled-down eyeguard – the closest point you can get your eye to the eye lens – to where the image forms) is the eye relief figure we would measure and list in this website.

Why is it important to list the “usable” eye relief? For those people who don’t wear eyeglasses while observing, a few mm difference between the eye relief they expect from the manufacturer’s literature and the shorter eye relief they actually get in real life doesn’t mean a lot. They can simply move a little closer to the eyepiece to see the full field, and never realize that the eye relief is a little shorter than they expected. However, some people must wear eyeglasses while observing, because of severe astigmatism. These observers can’t move closer to the eyepiece if the eye relief is shorter than expected because their glasses get in the way. For these people, the real life “usable” eye relief is more important than the technically correct but sometimes not fully usable “designed” eye relief. We measure and list the actual usable eye relief so that people in the real world can pick the eyepieces that will work best for them.

Close Focus:
How close you can get to an object and still see a sharp image of it in your binocular or spotting scope is called the “close” or “near” focus
A binocular or spotting scope whose body is clad in rubber or polyurethane armor is said to be armored. Armor can be applied for looks, a better grip, noise-proofing, etc. An armored body does not guarantee that a binocular or spotting scope is waterproof, although most waterproof optics are armored.
The weight of this product.
22.6 oz.
"No-Fault" Limited Lifetime
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  • Soft case with belt loop
  • Case strap
  • Padded neck strap
  • Tethered objective lens covers
  • Eyepiece rainguard
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10 x 42mm Spirit ED

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10 x 42mm Spirit ED
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Our Product #: SED1042
Manufacturer Product #: SPIRIT ED 1042
Price: $369.99
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This lightweight and high power Vanguard Spirit ED 10x42mm waterproof roof prism binocular uses high-quality ED glass and phase-corrected prisms for true-color observing at any distance from a close-in 8.2' out to the horizon.

. . . our 37th year