Opticron Aurora BGA VHD 8×42 Binoculars Review

Opticron Aurora VHD 42mm binocular

Review Date – January 2024
 
Price as reviewed –
Our price £799 (RRP –  £799) 

Pros

  • Incredible value for money
  • Lightweight
  • Fantastic image quality
  • Huge field of view and sharpness across the full field


Cons

  • Diopter adjustment on focus wheel feels a little flimsy

Background

Opticron are one of the world’s leading binocular and spotting scope manufacturers. Operating for over 40 years they now offer a range of optics to suit every price point. 

Their top of the line binocular, the Aurora BGA VHD, is arguably their most important binocular to date. The £800 price point is a difficult one to conquer, with a range of alternatives from brands such as Nikon, Zeiss, and Leica. Lets see if the Aurora is up to the task.  

Design

The Aurora’s design is typical Opticron. No fuss, no theatrics, just a simple, clean design which is functional, if a little conservative. The rubber armouring feels robust and other materials used are of an excellent quality. 

The key feature of the Opticron Aurora BGA VHD design is the weight. For a full size binocular at this price point it is very light and in the hand feels incredibly balanced and easy to hold. 

The focusing is also a particular highlight. The damping is excellent and the amount of wheel rotation required to focus is well judged, never feeling too sensitive that it is hard to get the binocular into focus as required.  

The eyecups offer plenty of eye relief and are comfortable when in use, allowing this binocular to be used for long periods of time without discomfort. 

Our only gripe with the design, and it is a small one, is that the diopter adjustment positioned on the focus wheel does feel a little flimsy when pulling it out to adjust the diopter. While this isn’t something which will be used a lot we would have liked to have seen a bit more of a confidence inspiring design/build quality. 

Optics

The design then is hard to fault, but against some stiff competition it is the optics where this battle will be won or lost. 

Thankfully Opticron have got the optical quality spot on. The standout feature is how bright these binoculars are in all conditions. For the price point there is no other binocular we have tested which comes close. 

The field of view is also excellent and sharpness across the image is also strong. There is a slight softness at the edges but this isn’t any worse than competitors, allowing you to use all of that field of view. 

Colours are also generally neutral with no strong lean towards enhanced warmer tones. When you look at the colours on a bird they are in line with how they would appear with the naked eye. 

It is really hard to fault the optics of the Aurora BGA VHD.

Conclusion

So, lets go back to the original point. With competition from the likes of the Zeiss Conquest HD 8×42 and Leica Trinovid HD 8×42 does the Opticron Aurora BGA VHD 8×42 compete? 

In short, yes, and then some. Granted the Zeiss and Leica are heading quickly towards being 10 year old binoculars now, but that goes to show how good they are and what a tough task Opticron had getting the Aurora right. 

However, they have not only matched Zeiss and Leica with their latest top end binocular, they have surpassed them by some margin. 

For design the Leica and the Opticron are closely matched, being both must more comfortable to use than the seemingly heavyweight, by comparison, Zeiss Conquest. 

For optics the Opticron stands out on its own. Brightness is noticeably better and edge to edge sharpness and field of view again stand out compared to the Zeiss and Leica. 

Added to this the Opticron comes with a 30 year warranty, which is a nice bonus. 

We hope you’ve found this review useful, if you’d like to find out more or purchase this binocular you can do so by clicking the arrow below, contacting us, or by popping into our Norfolk shop. 

Why buy from us?
  1. 14 day approval with no quibble returns
  2. Genuine UK stock and warranty
  3. Exceptional service from our staff with 50 years experience in optics
  4. Norfolk based showroom open 362 days a year 
  5. Phone, email, and live chat support whenever you need it