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Binoculars review

2011-05-11 09:55:03

Kenko 8x32 DH MS

The DH MS series from the Japanese company Kenko includes four models with the following parameters: 8×32, 10×32, 8×42 and 10×42. All these instruments feature Schmidt-Pechan roof prisms made of BaK-4 glass. They are phase correction coated and covered by special reflection layers, which are supposed to ensure high transmission level. All air-to-glass surfaces are covered by antireflection multilayer coatings.

The binoculars from this series are physically very light and compact but solidly build all the same. The barrel was made of magnesium alloys, it is waterproof and nitrogen filled. The producer boasts of using eco-friendly glass, without any lead or arsenic compounds.

The binoculars come with a 10-year-long guarantee. The buyer gets joined caps for objectives and eyepieces, a strap and a hard case included in box.

Kenko 8x32 DH MSKenko 8x32 DH MSKenko 8x32 DH MSKenko 8x32 DH MS
Manufacturer:
Kenko
web site
Distribution / Sales:
Migomex
web site
e-mail
ul. Fabryczna 2
43-100 Tychy
 
Basic parameters:
Magnification Lens diameter Angular field of view Prisms Eye relief Weight Price
8x 32mm 131/1000(7.5o) BaK-4/roof 15.3 mm 560g 1055PLN
More information about this product

Results of the review

Real front lens diameter Left:   32+/- 0.05mm
Right:  32+/- 0.05mm
8/8.0
Real magnification 7.99+/- 0.05x 3/3.0
Transmission 84.3+/- 1% 11/15.0
Chromatic aberration Medium in the centre, quite good because a bit less than the average result in this class on the edge. A very decent result for such a short pair of binoculars. 4.9/10.0
Astigmatism Very nice! Almost point-like images of stars! 8.6/10.0
Distortion The distance of the first curved line from the field centre compared to the field of vision radius: 55% ± 3%. 6/10.0
Coma Appears already after the middle of the field of vision radius. High on the very edge, the stars are visible as big distinct arcs. 4.2/10.0
Blurring at the edge of the FOV The blur occurs in the distance of 76% ± 5% from the field of vision centre. 4.5/10.0
Darkening at the edge the FOV Quite significant. 2.9/5.0
Whiteness of the image Uneven transmission graph with a distinct pit visible in the middle of the visible spectrum. 3.2/5.0
Collimation Perfect. 5/5.0
Internal reflections
Left: Right:
Kenko 8x32 DH MS - Internal reflections - Left Kenko 8x32 DH MS - Internal reflections - Right
Noticeable but not very bothersome.
3.6/5.0
Housing Small, short, very handy – only 115 mm of length. The binoculars is made in Japan. Comfortable to hold and to look through. Rubber twits-up eyecups moving smoothly, without click stops. The rubber on the coating a bit too slippery but it doesn’t stick out anywhere. Nothing creaks or cracks under pressure and there’s no visible grease anywhere. 7.8/8.0
Focusing Rubber-coated, ribbed and comfortable central wheel which moves smoothly and is a joy to use (full turn of 580 degrees). A comfortable screw on the right eyepiece; it is a bit loose but works without problems. It moves outer lens. 4.5/5.0
Tripod No. In the 8x32 binoculars’ test we awarded all instruments the same, average value of 1.5 points in this category as a tripod exit is rarely used in this class of equipment. 1.5/3.0
Interpupilary distance from 56 to 75.8mm 5/6.0
Closest focusing distance 1.9 m 1.5/2.0
Eyepieces FOV Apparent field of view of 58.2 degrees. 6/10.0
Field of view Measured by us amounted to 7.28 ± 0.03 degrees and it was by 0.22 degrees narrower than that stated in the specifications. The field of view a bit too small for this class of equipment. 4/8.0
Quality of the interior of the barrels Inner tubes black and slightly shiny. The bottom is dark and matt. Minimum specks of dust. 4/5.0
Vignetting
Left: Right:
Kenko 8x32 DH MS - Vignetting - Left Kenko 8x32 DH MS - Vignetting - Right
OL: 4.1%, OR: 4.7%.
2/8.0
Prisms quality High quality BaK-4. 8/8.0
Antireflection coatings Greenish on objectives, prisms and eyepieces. Medium intensity. 4.5/5.0
Warranty [years] 10 4.5/6.0
Final result 118.2/170
69.5%
Econo result 0pkt.
 

Summary


Pros:
  • short, lightweight, very handy barrel made of magnesium alloys,
  • perfectly corrected astigmatism,
  • good blackening and cleanliness inside the inner tubes,
  • good quality prisms made of BaK-4 glass,
  • decently corrected distortion.

Cons:
  • average transmission in the blue part of the spectrum and in the middle as well,
  • egg-shaped exit pupils,
  • significant light fall-off on the edge of the image,
  • too high coma.



The first contact with the Kenko 8x32 DH MS gives almost entirely positive impressions. The casing is small, handy and, what’s important, looks really well-done; it doesn’t weigh a lot. The inscription “Made in Japan”, visible on the barrel, is undoubtedly an asset.

When we start testing it and look closely at the results, our enthusiasm is damped down a bit, though. We deal here with an instrument costing about 250 Euro after all; paying as much you can expect a lot. The binoculars, however, feature few evident strong points, plenty of average results and several slip-ups.

It’s a pity the antireflection coatings are just average. The transmission graph, presented below, shows that in the red part of the spectrum the transmission is good as it exceeds 90%. Unfortunately in the middle of the visible spectrum it reaches just above 80% and for the blue end it decreases even below that value.


As a result we are not impressed either by the value of the transmission itself or by the colour rendition.

Small dimensions of the binoculars entail small prisms and egg-shaped exit pupils which make the instrument lose an additional amount of light, gathered by the objective lenses. What’s more, it also translates into a noticeable brightness loss on the edge of the field of vision.

On the other hand, though, the result of 118 points is nothing to be ashamed of. For 250 Euro we get a very decent optically, physically light and handy equipment in a very solid casing made of magnesium alloys. The warranty period of 10 years and the fact that the binoculars are produced in Japan might suggest that this purchase will last good several years of intense wear and tear without any problems.