July 31, 2019 5 min read
Vortex is one of the most loved brands in hunting optics, and quite possibly the entire hunting community. And for good reason. Top shelf customer service and VIP no fault lifetime warranty, Vortex is known for great glass at a great price. Do you want the best binoculars for your dollar? Then you have to take a look at the Vortex Razor HD binos that have been around for years. In June of 2013 S&S owner Steve Speck wrote a review comparing the Vortex Razor HD to the Zeiss Conquest HD. He chose the Razor HD.Six years later we’re still happy to recommend the Vortex Razor HD. As good now as it was then, and still the best bang for your dollar for 10x42 binoculars. For hunters wanting to take that next step from mid grade glass to high end however, there hasn’t been anything available from Vortex.. Until now.
Most of our comparisons were done side by side with the Vortex Razor HD 10x42, the Vortex Razor UHD 10x42, and the Swarovski SLC 10x42. In our opinion the SLC is THE standard in hunting binoculars. So naturally we added it to this comparison.
Viewing an optics resolution chart 35 yards away, at dark, I was able to see 2 levels of resolution with the Razor HD binoculars, 3 levels with the UHDs and 4 with the SLCs. Low light testing is really tough because we all see things differently. While I feel like there was a difference in my eyes between the 3 different binos on the resolution chart, if I were judging a buck in the early morning light I don’t know that I would be able to see such a difference.
Another optics resolution chart, this time at 50 yards in the middle of the day, gave us different results. Comparing the UHD binoculars to the SLC’s was simply too close to call. Sometimes I felt like the SLCs were the better glass, and sometimes I felt like the winner was the Razor UHD. More times than not though, it was the Razors. That says a lot. I do feel like the colors on the UHDs had more contrast than the SLCs. This could be beneficial when glassing late season when the bucks are in the sagebrush and tough to pick out. Also the field of view was noticeably larger than the SLCs. Edge to edge is good the SLC, however i did see some chromatic aberration on the UHD about 3/4 of the way out from center.
The UHD 10x42's are bigger when comparing to other popular binoculars. They are 7" x 5.5" and weigh 32.2oz. By comparison the SLC's are 5.7" x 4.7" and weigh 28 oz. But I do have to say that these binos look gorgeous! The design team made the UHD series look amazing. The locking diopter works well enough, but I did manage to unlock it when fumbling with the eye cups once or twice.
|Objective Lens Diameter||42mm||42 mm||50mm||56 mm|
|Eye Relief||16.7 mm||16.7mm||17 mm||18mm|
|Exit Pupil 4.2 mm||4.2 mm||5.25 mm||4.2 mm||3.1 mm|
|Linear Field of View||346 feet/1000 yds||420 feet/1000 yards||288 feet/1000 yards||
194 feet/1000 yards
|Angular Field of View||6.6 degrees||8 degrees||5.5 degrees||3.7 degrees|
|Close Focus||4.5 feet||4.5 feet||6.6 feet||10 feet|
|Interpupillary Distance||56-76 mm||56-76 mm||56-76 mm||56-76 mm|
|Height||7 inches||7 inches||7.6 inches||8.3 inches|
|Width||5.6 inches||5.6 inches||5.8 inches||6.1 inches|
|Weight||32.2 oz||32.2 oz||36.1 oz||41.6 oz|
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