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Adam Lyall | 08/07/2021
The Viking 12-36x50mm Swallow Spotting Scope aims to provide an alternative approach to the world of birdwatching. This spotting scope aims to provide a lightweight and portable design to create an accessible option. Furthermore, this spotting scope provides a much higher optical quality output in comparison to many binoculars. This helps to cement this spotting scope as a must-have option for any avid birdwatchers out there.
The Viking Spotting Scope offers a wide range of magnification which certainly makes this an optimal choice for all activities. Whether you are viewing objects at a distance or up-close, this spotting scope provides everything you need. The sheer level of flexibility makes this an essential tool for any wildlife enthusiast out there. In addition to this, there is no drop-off in quality when switching between the different ranges available. The scope maintains a crystal-clear image at all times.
When purchasing a new spotting scope, we understand that you want to make an informed decision. With so many options available, it can certainly feel overwhelming. Thankfully our team of experts have spent some time testing this scope out and putting it to the test. This review for the Viking Swallow Spotting Scope aims to details exactly why this has become so popular.
The Viking 12-36x50mm Swallow Spotting Scope provides a design which is both lightweight and compact. This design choice has become the standard with most Viking products and therefore allows them to be extremely portable. This spotting scope weighs in at a mere 626 grams in total. This helps make this spotting scope the perfect travel companion - especially for those long-distance trips.
The spotting scope feels excellent to hold and use. Viking have done an incredible job of striking the correct balance with the overall design. Despite the lightweight design, you can feel the high build quality of this scope. You can certainly expect to receive a long product life from this scope regardless of how often you use this.
Furthermore, the Viking Swallow Spotting Scope comes with additional accessories including a protective case. This helps to add some further protection on to the scope during use and when travelling with this. This is perfect for those who are constantly on the move and want to make sure the scope remains protected.
The lightweight design available with the Viking Swallow Spotting Scope makes this a fantastic option for long-term use. However, this design takes nothing away from the overall durability of the scope. The waterproof design available with the scope ensures that this is ready for use in all weather conditions. Pairing this with the case ensures maximum protection for the scope at all times.
The inclusion of design features such as twist-down eyecups have become a fundamental part of Viking products. The twist-down eyecups allow for quick and easy adjustments for the overall positioning. These twist-down eyecups are incredibly beneficial to those that wear glasses. These eyecups allow for the full image to be viewable through the lenses without having to remove your glasses. Regardless of whether you wear glasses or not, the twist-down eyecups are a fantastic feature which provide excellent comfort.
Finally, the design mechanic that the Viking Swallow Spotting Scope offers are simple yet effective. Adjusting the focus wheel and the changing the magnification of the scope feels smooth. The scope feels incredibly responsive to any changes during use. Whether you are an intermediate user or a beginner, you should certainly feel comfortable getting to grips with this scope.
Reviewing the quality of the Viking Swallow Spotting Scope's optics is arguably the most important factor to consider. When using scopes for activities such as birdwatching then you need to be sure that it can deliver high-quality results. Thankfully this scope provides an image which is crisp and defined. Viking once again proving that they set the benchmark when it comes to quality.
The Viking Swallow Spotting Scope provides an objective lens diameter of 50mm. This wide lens allows for an increased amount of light that can travel through the scope. This increased light transmission allows for the images to appear much brighter when viewing this through the lens. Therefore, this spotting scope provides a much better image quality in comparison to most binoculars currently available.
In addition to this, the wide objective lenses provides a narrow FOV (field-of-view). However, the available FOV will vary depending on the level of magnification you are using with the scope. With the Viking Swallow Spotting Scope you can expect to receive around 3.1°-1.6°. As you increase the magnification power, it will reduce the expected FOV.
In comparison to a standard set of binoculars, this FOV is much narrower. However, the overall magnification power and flexibility of the spotting scope helps to balance this out. If you are looking for something which offers a precise focus, then this spotting scope is definitely the best option.
The overall image quality provided by this spotting scope is exceptional. Throughout the testing process this scope consistently delivered high-quality results. The objective lens does a great job in taking in as much light as possible to create a bright image. In addition to this, the scope does a fantastic job of perfecting the resolution and colour contrast. This helps to create a flawless image regardless of the environment that you are operating in.
The Viking Swallow Spotting Scope also includes nitrogen within the lens. This helps to prevent any fogging from taking place within the lens. This makes this an optimal choice for when using this in the Winter months. In addition to this, the nitrogen helps to reduce the build up of any potential dirt.
Viking are famous for their ability to create optics of the highest quality. The Viking Swallow Spotting Scope is certainly no exception. If you are a keen wildlife observer, then this scope feels like an essential piece of kit. Not only does this scope offer a fantastic image, but the whole operation feels smooth and accessible.
Finally, the last point to touch on is the eye-relief that the spotting scope offers. The eye-relief is the distance between the user's eye and scope when looking through the lens. This essentially dictates how much comfort is available during use. This spotting scope offers a total eye-relief of 17mm. This level of eye-relief ensures a great deal of comfort at all times - especially during long-term use. This always felt comfortable to use throughout our time testing this out.
The Viking Swallow Spotting Scope certainly provides a lot of value thanks to the design and features. However, it is important to review how well this performs in the field. With the time spent with this scope, we can confirm that the performance lives up to the standards set.
This scope does well to find a balance between the high level of visual quality and the lightweight design. Not only does the scope feel great to hold, but you can feel the quality of the materials used. This is a product which will certainly last for a long time without ever dropping off in quality. The scope's resistance to water makes this extremely versatile for use in all weather conditions and environments. Furthermore, the inclusion of the case helps to increase the overall durability of the scope.
The overall image quality through the lens of the scope is excellent. Combining this with the wide range of magnification powers makes the scope feel incredibly flexible. The image appears bright and well defined when viewing this through the scope. Whilst there are limitations with the FOV, you can still expect to get a great detailed look at any object. This is perfect for activities such as birdwatching.
The powerful magnification zoom available with the spotting scope is certainly a big advantage. In comparison to binoculars, this scope easily outperforms the majority of them. Whilst this is a great option to have for birdwatching, there are some issues that this may cause. The main issue is that you require a steady hand - especially when using a higher magnification. When completely zoomed in, even the slightest movement can cause the image to distort. If you are an intermediate user then this may not be an issue.
The Viking Swallow Spotting Scope does offer a bundle which includes a tripod. Whilst this is not necessary, it certainly can be helpful if you require additional support. The Velbon M47 Tripod is available as a separate item which is currently available on the website. The spotting scope attaches easily to this tripod and ensures that the scope remains still.
The scope performs well in every environment and high-quality results are a certainty. Whether you use this for birdwatching or wildlife observation, this spotting scope will provide a bright and clear image. The level of image quality was impressive throughout the entire testing process.
The Viking Swallow Spotting Scope delivers high-quality results in a lightweight and compact design. The scope excels in providing an image which is bright and well defined. This is largely down to the wide objective lens diameter that the scope provides. In addition to this, the powerful magnification zoom makes this scope the perfect choice for any birdwatchers.
The overall functionality of the scope is excellent and it operates smoothly. This is an incredibly versatile scope thanks to the magnification power. This is all achieved without having to compromise on the image quality available. If you are looking for a new spotting scope, then the Viking Swallow is certainly one worth considering.
Whilst this is more suitable for intermediate users, the scope feels accessible enough for beginners to pick up and use. However, keeping the scope straight can be difficult if you do not have previous experience with this. The Velbon M47 Tripod is a fantastic accessory to add on to the scope. This provides a quick and easy method to ensuring that the scope remains still.
Viking maintain their brand's ability to produce high-end products at an affordable price. Value for money is a certainly when considering the price that this scope is available for. We consider this a must-buy for any avid birdwatchers out there.
Read More: Reviews for the Viking 12-36x50mm Swallow Spotting Scope
This entry was posted in Reviews, Binoculars, Binoculars & Birding on 08/07/2021 by Adam Lyall.