8X43mm DCF ED

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The extra 1mm aperture of the Pentax 8 x 43mm DCF ED may not sound like much when compared to a standard 42mm aperture binocular, but that extra millimeter gives the Pentax almost 5% more light gathering capacity than a conventional binocular. It’s an extra margin of brightness that can significantly extend your twilight birding time. It also makes it easier for you to see subtle field marks and colors in overcast or shadowed woodland birding conditions.

Add to that extra brightness the exceptional color fidelity and sharpness of costly ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass optical elements, and you have an absolutely unique 8x binocular. The use of ED glass for superior color reproduction and the elimination of chromatic aberrations (spurious color) is common in spotting scopes, but very rare in binoculars. Pentax is the first binocular manufacturer to adopt its optical advantages to an entire line of binoculars.

An excellent near focus of 6.6’ makes the 8 x 43 ED excellent for close-in birding in shadowed wooded areas. In these kinds of low light conditions, the 5% added brightness of its 1mm extra aperture can often make the difference between making a difficult identification and missing the bird entirely. Like all the Pentax ED series, this totally waterproof and fogproof 8x binocular uses the latest type of sophisticated aspheric optical elements for excellent resolution, an exceptionally flat field that is sharp and in focus from edge to edge, and low distortion and astigmatism.

Features of this binocular . . .

  • H-body roof prism with internal center focus.
  • Lightweight magnesium-alloy body with noise- and shock-absorbing dark green rubber armor and black trim. Many naturalists believe that dark green armor is less disturbing to birds and wildlife than conventional black armor. Shallow thumb grooves molded into the underside of the body help position the hands to balance the binoculars properly for comfortable extended observing sessions.
  • Sophisticated four lens/three group objective lenses for sharp, high-resolution images.
  • ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass optical elements reduce chromatic aberrations – the color fringing seen at the edges of dark objects viewed against a light background in lesser binoculars – to vanishingly low levels. Chromatic aberration is essentially non-existent, eliminating the yellow and purple fringes around tree limbs and power lines seen against a bright sky, and making it easier to determine the true color of eye rings, for example.
  • Fully multicoated optics for maximum light transmission. The external lens surfaces (both objective lenses and eyepieces) also have an additional scratch-resistant hard coating for added protection from scratches, dings, rough handling, etc. A hydrophobic (water-shedding) coating on the lenses helps keep water from forming large beads on the lenses during foggy or rainy observing, improving the image sharpness and contrast.
  • Hybrid aspherical lens elements in its three-lens/two-group eyepiece design provide a wide field with good edge-to-edge sharpness.
  • Little more than one and a half turns of the large ribbed focus knob moves from an excellent close focus of 6.6’ out to the horizon and beyond. The 6.6’ close focus and good 6.3° field make the 8 x 43mm Pentax ED a good choice for close-in woodland birding.
  • Nitrogen-filled and O-ring sealed to be internally fogproof in all temperature extremes and waterproof to a depth of 1 meter. The inert nitrogen filling also prevents the internal formation of fungus in high humidity climates, such as rain forests.
  • Phase-correcting prism coatings provide high contrast and resolution. This is particularly visible when looking sunwards, where more color and detail is clearly visible in the shadowed areas of backlit or silhouetted birds.
  • Twist-up rubber-rimmed eyecups retract into the binocular body for eyeglass use. The eyecups have four built-in click stops to more precisely match the eye relief to your eyesight. The eye relief is specified at 22mm. While this is technically correct, the actual usable eye relief will typically measure a few mm less due to the recessing of the eyepieces when the eyecups are in the down position for eyeglass use. A shorter eye relief than specified is typical of all binoculars. Vignetting (if any) will be very minor for most eyeglass wearers.
  • Objective lens covers are provided to protect the optics. The covers are tethered to the binocular body so they can’t be lost in the field, but can be removed if desired.
  • A socket is built into the center hinge to let you connect an optional photo tripod adapter for extended tripod-mounted hands-free observing sessions.
  • The continuously variable diopter ring on the right eyepiece allows you to match the binocular’s optical performance to that of your eyes. It can be locked in place so it can’t accidentally be knocked out of adjustment during use.
  • A comfortably-large ribbed rubber-coated focus knob makes it easy to focus while wearing mittens or gloves.
  • An eyepiece rainguard is standard equipment, as is a wide woven neck strap and a lightly padded Cordura-type nylon soft case. The case is designed primarily to store the 8 x 43mm ED when it is not in use, so no shoulder strap is provided.
  • This Pentax binocular is covered by the Pentax “No-Worry” lifetime warranty. If a Pentax ever requires repair, even if the damage is the owner’s fault, Pentax will repair it or replace it (at Pentax’s option) to the original owner for a charge of only $19.95 to cover handling and return shipping. The “No-Worry” warranty does not cover cosmetic damage, theft, or loss. Replacement may be with a compatible model at Pentax’s discretion if the original model is no longer available.
  • 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.

    Interpupillary Distance:
    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.
    Number of optical elements:
    7 per side
    The weight of this product.
    25.2 oz.
    "No-Fault" Limited Lifetime
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    • Soft case
    • Eyepiece rainguard
    • Objective lens covers
    • Neck strap
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    Pentax - 8X43mm DCF ED

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    Pentax - 8X43mm DCF ED
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    Our Product #: P843ED
    Manufacturer Product #: 62623
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    MSRP: $1129.00

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    NEW CLOSEOUT! $152 below dealer cost. The ED glass of the Pentax 8 x 43mm DCF ED provides exceptional color fidelity and edge-to-edge sharpness.

    . . . our 38th year