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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    9,300ft
    Posts
    19,297

    Best higher power lens?

    ... for a reasonable price...

    I broke my little BCA folding lens and I need a high power one anyways so what to get?

    10 & 30 singlet or doublet loupes plus a 20x... prolly low quality $5
    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/SE-Chrome-Loupes-Pocket-Magnifier/dp/B000T43JG4/ref=pd_sim_sg_19"]Amazon.com: SE 10X 20X 30X 21mm Chrome Loupes Pocket Magnifier New 3Pc: Everything Else[/ame]

    $11 for a triplet 30x
    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/SE-Triplet-Jewelers-Loupe-30X/dp/B000OVPH12/ref=pd_sim_sg_43"]Amazon.com: SE Triplet Jeweler's Loupe - 30X: Everything Else[/ame]

    $25 lifelink 25x
    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Life-Link-25X-Microscope-by/dp/B001FZAG2Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=sporting-goods&qid=1267554165&sr=1-1"]Amazon.com: 25X Microscope by Life-Link: Sports & Outdoors[/ame]

    $15 for a 12x folder
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...specifications

    $7 for a 15x slide loup
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...specifications

    $42 for a 22x slide loupe
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...specifications

    $48 for a 30x scope that triples as an 8x20 monocular and a 3x loupe
    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Carson-MA-30-Magni-Pocket-Microscope/dp/B0000DGHGA/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=sporting-goods&qid=1267554134&sr=1-3"]Amazon.com: Carson MA-30 Magni Scope Pocket Microscope: Sports & Outdoors[/ame]

    $27 Or this thing which is a 40x scope that tripless as a 8x20 monocular and a 5x loupe
    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Carson-MV-820-MicroView-Microscope/dp/B0011WYMAU"]Amazon.com: Carson MicroView Microscope: Sports & Outdoors[/ame]

    A high quality 30x view really really helps you see the crystals... but $48 is a lot to pay...
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    640
    Get something sturdy with a glass lense that's easy to clean.

    You want something with enough zoom to magnify the crystals so that it's easy to determine the predominant crystal form in the layer. Too much zoom makes it more difficult to see a large enough section of the layer at the same time. I find this makes it much more difficult to determine the primary crystal form in a layer.

    Not sure about zoom level for examining crystals on a card because I measure crystal size relative to other crystals, and rarely make exact measurements. ( Ex: Fine vs. Medium vs. Coarse )

    Can't recommend any of the specific products listed. This is the type of purchase I prefer to make in person.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    9,300ft
    Posts
    19,297
    Quote Originally Posted by CookieMonster View Post
    Get something sturdy with a glass lense that's easy to clean.

    You want something with enough zoom to magnify the crystals so that it's easy to determine the predominant crystal form in the layer. Too much zoom makes it more difficult to see a large enough section of the layer at the same time. I find this makes it much more difficult to determine the primary crystal form in a layer.

    Not sure about zoom level for examining crystals on a card because I measure crystal size relative to other crystals, and rarely make exact measurements. ( Ex: Fine vs. Medium vs. Coarse )

    Can't recommend any of the specific products listed. This is the type of purchase I prefer to make in person.
    Definitely true that higher magnification gives you a very narrow field of view. Sometimes I felt the 30x were a problem that way, but usually not.

    Unfortunately I can't really check out any of these items in person.
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    1,919
    Arron,

    Congratulations on passing the AVPRO course.

    Over the years I have used a lot of hand lens, with various degrees of success. The little fold-up thread counter ones are nice but tend to busted quickly.

    I have found that the X8 power slide loops are worthwhile for most snowpit work. But, if you are a true snow-nerd and want a closer view these do not work very well.

    Several years ago I was doing some snowpit work with Nick Logan (former assistant director of CAIC). When it came time to look at crystals, Nick pulled out this little monocular. Now normally a monocular is used to look long distance, instead of close-up. But, Nick flipped the monocular around, and looked through the opposite end from the eyepiece end. I tried this out and found that I was getting a lot better magnified view then with my X8 slide loop.

    So, I bought a Cstar Optics 8 X 20 mm monocular out of a catalog. I think it cost about $25. The great thing about this monocular is that not only is it light (maybe 2 oz with the case) and small, but that it is a multi-functional tool in my pocket. Not only can I look at snow crystals but I can also use the long range function for doing field observations and route finding. I have for years liked to have items in my pack/pockets that are multi-functional, rather then limited in their functions. This little monocular looks like the one on the top end of the Carson MA-30 Magni Scope.

    I see in the Mountain Gear catalog that they have a 7 X 18 monocular on sale for $14.97. http://www.mountaingear.com/pages/pr...tem/114679/N/0
    This "route finder" monocular looks like it would really do a nice job.

    The next time you see me at the ski area Arron, ask me to show you this monocular. I think you'll be impressed.

    Halsted
    "True love is much easier to find with a helicopter"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    9,300ft
    Posts
    19,297
    Thanks Halsted! I'll definitely hit you up to check out the monocular.
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    9,300ft
    Posts
    19,297
    Well, I tried it with my monocular... it works pretty well... not great but OK... good enough for most of the time!
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Sawtooth's
    Posts
    1,337
    I am going to try this one out.
    http://www.wasatchtouring.com/store/carsonlens.html

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    1,734
    Bumping this. I'm looking for a do-it-all monocular to scout out lines and look at avy's from far away. maybe look at snow crystals (tho I'm not really at that level yet).

    Any suggestions? I know nothing about what kinda power and diameter I would want.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    6,218
    Been thinking about getting one of these Zeiss 5x10 monoculars for looking at lines.
    ZEISS 5x10 T* MiniQuick Monocular

    Yeah it has a small objective lens and isn't high power, but...small and lightweight is nice when it's in your pocket or pack, which is where it will be most of the time. Plastic tube is fine with me, I just want good glass. Some photos to show just how tiny it is: https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/5...k-5x10-review/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    1,734
    Dang that is pricey though, I was hoping to stay under $100. I've been looking at the new hipster Nocs Provisions 8x32's. Not that small, but built rugged and can buy and try from REI which is nice.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Alpental
    Posts
    4,083
    The Carson 30x is pretty awesome if you can find one $48 isn't that much for something of halfway decent quality. I have one and use it, personally I'd get some quality compact bino's for looking at things from a distance
    I have a responsibility to not be intimidated and bullied by low life losers who abuse what little power is granted to them as ski patrollers.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    6,218
    Just ordered the Carson 6x18 monocular for $18. Could be crap, but it's small and has gotta be better than nothing.

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