Is the Vanguard Endeavor HD 82A the best Mid-Range Spotting Scope for birdwatching?

Friday, 7 January 2022  |  Admin

I wanted to purchase a telescope for use in resuming a birdwatching hobby, and last bought a telescope around 30 years ago. So researched what was the best scope to go for without spending hundreds and hundreds of pounds on a scope with only marginal differences.

I found that the Vanguard Endeavor HD 82A Spotting Scope came out with superb reviews on many websites and only had one real competitor in the mid-range categories, which was a brand that I had not heard of. So, I opted for the Vanguard scope and have not been disappointed with it at all. In fact, I am delighted with it.

It has a 20-60 x magnification eye piece which I have found gives quite ample magnification and at 20 x is sometimes almost too high as a starting point! The quality of the eye piece and the zoom in wheel is very good and gives a very smooth and firm rotation, which indicates the high build quality of the scope to me.

The large front lens seems to capture a lot of light, and I have used the scope in quite dim conditions and been pleased with the image it gives.

The two focus wheels are a good feature, and this is one of the few scopes in this price range with the extra fine focus wheel. When looking at birds at sea I found this very useful as you find birds out at varying distances but just need to use a fine focus wheel and not struggle with just one focus ring. Again, the high build quality is noticeable when using the focus rings.

The actual body of the spotting scope is very solid, and the scope isn't the lightest available, but I do like the weight of it to provide more stability when it is being used on a tripod. When sea-watching the weight helps make the scope more usable in breezy conditions.

Regarding the image quality, I am very happy with what can be seen. When using it you certainly see birds very clearly at all magnifications and colours seem very true. There is no obvious colour aberrations or distortion around the edge of the image at all, and I have seen nothing to make me think I could have got a better scope.

The case to the scope is tight-fitting and has a useful carry strap. A couple of criticisms on the case are that the poppers I do not find easy to use with gloves on and there is no popper on top of the flap that covers the front lens and so it does not always stay in place. However, the lens cap is substantial and so protects the lens well when not in use.

I would not hesitate in recommending this scope, especially for birding and other nature uses and am pleased with my choice.

​Review by: Jon E

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