Visionary 20×80 HD binoculars

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5
Visionary 20x80 HD

Price: £169.99
Aperture: 80mm
Weight: 2.3kg (5lb)
Supplier: Optical Hardware
Telephone: 01226 203275
Website: www.opticalhardware.co.uk

This pair from Visionary has a central stabilising bar, so when you’ve attached it to a tripod its position can be adjusted to balance the binoculars better.

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Generally this worked well, but we did notice that the binoculars could tilt slightly from side to side when touched.

The lenses appeared multicoated but the internal barrels appeared shiny in places.

That said, there was only slight evidence of internal reflections and ghosting of bright objects when we looked at the Moon and bright stars.

Special mention has to be made of the front lens caps – they were rubber and fitted snugly to the inside of the front lens hoods.

The 3.2º-wide field of view was pretty good and sharp across 75 per cent of the view, only trailing off slightly towards the edges.

Albireo was colourful and displayed good contrast between its orange and sky blue components, while Mizar was cleanly split.

M27, The Dumbbell Nebula, was bright with a box-like shape and the smaller Ring Nebula, M57, was a distinct smudge against the backdrop of stars.

Turning to the only planet on view, Jupiter was adequate but did seem to have a slightly greenish tint to its disc.

The galaxy M51 showed up as two smudges, one slightly larger than the other.

Overall then, these binoculars performed very well considering the reasonable price.

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This review appeared in the September 2008 issue of Sky at Night Magazine