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Availability date: 02/14/2013
|Objective diameter:||42 mm|
|Exit pupil:||5.3 mm (0.21 in)|
|Field of view:||426 ft / 130 m @ 1000 yards (8.1 degrees)|
|Eye relief:||17 mm (0.67 in)|
|Near focus:||6.5 ft (1.98 m)|
|Interpupillary distance:||56-73 mm (2.2-2.87 in)|
|Lens coatings:||Fully multi-coated|
|Body:||Open hinged magnesium alloy|
|Prism type:||BaK-4 Roof|
|Weight:||24 oz (680 g)|
|Included accessories:||Neck strap, harness strap, objective lens caps, rainguard, carrying case, lens cloth, instruction manual|
The Celestron Granite 8x42 ED binocular is Celestron's answer to the sub-$500 ED binocular. Celestron has been known for decades as one of the premier astronomy optics manufacturers, so it's not surprising that they are moving into sport optics. And if the Granite ED is any indication of what they have up their sleeve, we're looking forward to more.
The Granite 8x42 ED is, on the surface, a very familiar design. We have seen this open bridge frame several times before, from any number of manufacturers. But Celestron went a little bit further with their version, and included some elements that will set it apart from the rest. Standard options at this price include the obligatory rubber armor, nitrogen purging, and lightweight magnesium body. The first real difference, especially compared to the clones, is the ergonomics of the molded armor. Whereas a lot of comparable binoculars have simple canted indentations in the bottom for the user's thumbs, these indentations are straight. It does result in a noticable difference in feel, but whether or it's good or bad is going to be subjective.
The other huge advantage that the Celestron Granite 8x42 ED has over its clones is the attached lens caps. We have seen a similar type of cap on the Celestron Cavalry binoculars, which is really one of the few examples we have. It's disappointing that more manufacturers are not taking caps into consideration. Having them attached prevents them from getting lost, which is far too common with slip-on lens caps.
At just 1lb 9 ounces, the Granite 8x42 ED is pleasurable to use. And the included binocular harness is a huge addition that you don't see on most binoculars. If you've never been fortunate enough to use a binocular harness for an extended viewing session, give it a try. You'll likely find (like we have) that it's an absolute necessity for the serious birder or hunter. The harness is identical to the harness packaged with the Celestron Trailseeker binocular, as is the included soft carrying case. But that's about all this binocular shares with the Trailseeker.
Mechcanically, we have no complaints about the Granite 8x42 ED. The body hinge is tight (slightly tighter than most) and interpupillary distance is a "set it and forget it" affair. Diopter adjustment is constant, and stays perfectly focused throughout the range, from close focus of 6.5 feet to infinity. The eye cups have a little (almost unnoticeable) wiggle to them, but stay where adjusted and eye relief is ample. The lens caps stay in place when closed, and they aren't going anywhere when in the open position.
Of course, an ED binocular is nothing without some serious optical performance. There's a standard that you expect from an ED binocular under $500. Clarity, sharpness, and chromatic aberration control are all basic requirements. And we're comfortable giving the Celestron Granite 8x42 ED a thumbs up in all areas. The only downside that we can see is that the focusing knob goes about two full turns from close focus to infinity, and that's more a personal gripe than anything. Some may prefer that, so it's a non-issue.
The most impressive aspect of the Granite 8x42's optics is the 8.1 degree field of view. Everybody has their own personal preference when it comes to the most important optical aspect, and for us, it's FOV. A wide field of view just feels more natural to us, so we are very happy with this.
Overall, the Granite 8x42 ED is definitely worth the money, and it competes well in its class. For a quality ED glass binocular and a limited lifetime warranty, look no further. The Celestron Granite 8x42 ED is a solid performer with some great options that is a great long-term investment for hunters and birders alike.
Objective diameter: 42 mm
Field of view: 426 ft / 130 m @ 1000 yards (8.1 degrees)
Eye relief: 17 mm (0.67 in)
Exit pupil: 5.3 mm (0.21 in)
Near focus: 6.5 ft (1.98 m)
Interpupillary distance: 56-73 mm (2.2-2.87 in)
Lens coatings: Fully multi-coated
Body: Open hinged magnesium alloy
Prism type: BaK-4 Roof
Nitrogen purged: Yes
Tripod adaptable: Yes
Weight: 24 oz (680 g)
Included accessories: Neck strap, harness strap, objective lens caps, rainguard, carrying case, lens cloth, instruction manual
Celestron Granite Series Roof Prism Binoculars are the pinnacle of optical and mechanical design. They stand up well against the much more expensive European and higher end Japanese manufactured binoculars at a fraction of their cost - a real value!
Granite Binoculars feature ED (Low Dispersion) glass in the optical design. They deliver edge-to-edge sharpness with excellent color correction and razor sharp images while virtually eliminating chromatic aberration.
State-of-the-art modern open frame style provides an excellent grip and is comfortable to handle (even single handed) with the reduced weight.