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Opticron’s Vega II 7×50 is the only pair in this test to come with a hard carry case. The binoculars themselves have a rubberised covering that allows for a firm grip.
They are the most compact of the six tested and lightweight at just 740g, making them an ideal pick-up-and-go pair.
They were easy to attach to a tripod for a more stable viewing platform than just holding them, which allows you to see fainter objects.
Interpupillary adjustment was smooth and generous, accommodating a good range of width between the eyes.
Focusing was via a standard central focusing wheel, while the right-hand eyepiece’s slick dioptre adjustment had a good range, adapting the focus to the slight differences between focus points that everybody’s eyes have.
We used the bright stars Procyon and Capella to assess the quality of the field of view.
We were looking for internal reflections that might degrade the view, and found faint ghosting around bright stars.
The field of view turned out to be 7° and of good quality across 70 per cent, degrading slightly over the outer 30 per cent.
This wide field of view made the open star clusters M44 and M45 and the Coma Cluster enjoyable.
In the Orion region, the view encompassed the Hunter’s Belt and Sword, while the Orion Nebula was a distinct hazy patch.
This wide field was no obstacle to picking out some of the brighter Messier galaxies – M81 and M82, plus M65 and M66.
The Moon looked small, but craters were visible along its terminator.
Overall, the Vega II is a good, handy pair of binoculars.
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This review appeared in the May 2010 issue of Sky at Night Magazine