by kenny » May 22, 2013 I worked for decades in a high-tech industry. I developed an appreciation of the finest optics money can buy from Zeiss and Leica and a couple other companies. I LOVE sharp fine camera lenses and will gladly eat fishheads and rice forever to acquire these gems. What fine optics can do is astonishing and I really appreciate it. I had a pair of small but nice Nikon binoculars for around 20 years, but left them in Disney Hall after a concert so I'm shopping once again. But this time I'm reaching for the Holy grail of binocs, Swovarvski EL Swarovision, Zeiss Victory HT, or Leica Ultravid HD, in 8x42 size. Priced from $2,200 to $2,600 these will not, rather can not, be upgraded. IT's like 3 D IF diamonds with tip-top but different cut, an ACA, an Octavia and an AVC. IOW, binocs for life. I've spent zillions of hours researching Internet reviews, manufacture's sites, birdwatching fora, hunting fora, astronomy fora, optics fora. The consensus is there is no consensus beyond these 3 are equally superlative, and people with decades of experience using the best of the best binocs are pretty much evenly distributed between loyalty to each of these 3 brands. There is a particular complaint against Zeiss that the edge of the circle is not quite as sharp as the center, but we're talking TINY degradation. Swarovsky...there is an astonishingly flat field but the achieve this there is a 3-D bizarre effect when panning with them that is disorienting, but most can get used to it and after getting used to it devotees are passionately dedicated to this brand. With Leica there is apparently no particular complaint I could locate. So, I wanted to compare them personally. $2,200+ is a lot to spend on a binco so I insist on a test drive. I called all around to find a local dealer authorized to sell a 3 brands, who has an 8x42 in stock with all 3 brands. They all sell them for the same price +- a few bucks. I just wanted to try each out in the store, side by side. Well, nobody has all 3 brands, let alone all 3 in the size I want. So, I decided to temporarily buy all 3, one from each of 3 different dealers, and try them out and return 2 before the 30-day return period. Is that evil?