Zeiss Victory SF Review
From the March/April 2017 issue of MuleyCrazy Magazine
by Steve Monk
A guy’s 10x42 binoculars are his best tool for hunting big mule deer. A great spotting scope is imperative for assessing animals at a distance, and 15-power binoculars are an incredible tool to locate a large amount of game in big country, but the binoculars that will get the most use are the one’s around your neck. We always encourage folks to buy the best binoculars you can afford, as they will be a huge help in getting a big buck on the ground. 10-power binoculars can be found in every price range imaginable, but they certainly are not all comparable.
We often hear people saying they’ve been using the same pair of binos since the 1980’s, and how they are “every bit as good” as these new “overpriced” ones. I can assure you that, just like everything else in this world, binocular technology is improving and what was the best even five years ago is not the best now. If you spend a lot of time and/or money on your hunting, do yourself a favor and buy quality optics! You’ll be surprised at how amazing the top-end glass is these days!
Continually improving even their very best glass, Zeiss has come out with what is arguably the best binocular out there, in their Victory SF series. We’ve touched on these binos in various articles, but they are worth discussing in depth.
Out of all the binoculars I’ve had the opportunity to get my hands on (and that’s just about everything under the sun), the design of the Victory SF binoculars is the best I’ve seen. With a natural grip, your index finger falls right onto the large focus knob, allowing for maximum comfort and easy adjustments. The focus wheel itself is just how I like it; not too slow, not too fast. It’s obvious that the designers knew what they were doing there. A triple hinge design makes for outstanding strength and durability, something you want when purchasing a pair of high-end binos.
The second you pick up the Victory SF binocular, you will be blown away at how lightweight it feels. I’ve yet to see someone not make a comment about how light they feel in their hands. Amazingly enough, they weigh just the same as any other top-tier 10x42 out there, but the design of the SF allows for a center of gravity that is much farther back in the bino. This is achieved by shifting a large portion of the lens elements to the rear. The bino has much less weight on the front end, and much more right where your hands are. We all know how important steady glass is while hunting, and because of their superior balance, these things feel WAY lighter than your average bino. The end result being comfortable, steady glassing, and absolutely outstanding image quality.
The glass in the Victory SF is as good as it gets. Multiple fluoride lenses made from the highest quality SCHOTT glass provides superior color fidelity and an incredibly sharp image. Having a light transmission rate of 92%, those crucial moments trying to locate a mature mule deer at dawn and dusk are maximized to the fullest. With seven lenses in the eye piece, as well as field flatteners, the SF is crystal clear all the way to the edges. I could go on and on about the impeccable image quality, but I can sum it up by saying that the image is strikingly clean, and the color and details are astounding – as good as anything on the market. When you factor in the previously mentioned unique design of the SF’s, it’s something that is hard to beat if you’re looking for the very best binocular money can buy.
Even though hunting season seems far away, it will be here before we know it. Now is the time to upgrade your optics and other hunting equipment. Hopefully, Uncle Sam will be giving you something back, and like we’ve said over and over, NOTHING will benefit your hunting more than top-quality optics. If you have any questions about the Victory SF binocular, or any other optics, give us a call at the office. Ryan or I would be happy to answer your questions, or to point you in the right direction. 435-644-2486