New for 2021 — Swarovski EL Range with Tracking Assistant
Swarovski Optik has just raised the bar on range finding binoculars yet again! I remember when the long-awaited Gen I EL Range came out years back. Instantly they were a huge success. Their reputation for top quality glass and precision in everything they do, the EL Range proved to be a reliable field glass with precision measuring capabilities. This was exactly what the industry needed. But did the Gen 1 EL Range check all the boxes?
Well... Swarovski’s latest offering certainly checked those boxes and more with some innovative “out of the box” thinking with features that will serve the industry extremely well. I will take you on a little tour of these features in a series of field tests and comparisons that will show just how strong the new EL Range TA is in the marketplace.
In short here are the anything but basic features that are new for the EL Range TA:
- The RANGE BUTTON is now on the right side for archery hunters' ease of use.
- You can now load your own ballistic solutions into the binocular via the mobile Configurator App that allows for up to 3 different profiles via Bluetooth.
- Ranging now starts at 10.9 to 2,187 yards. This is going to make the archery crowd happy, because now you can range below the old 33 yard starting point. Also, a tilt sensor measures the angle and takes that into account.
- Scanning mode stays the same.
- Readouts in the right tube are precise and clean with no bleed over in the digital numbers. Set up your read out for Line of Sight along with Holdover, Clicks, or Corrected shooting distance.
- Softened lines and slightly moved focus wheel for enhanced ergonomics for perfect focusing.
- Swarovision for near-perfect edge to edge quality and enhance color fidelity and resolution with 90% light transmission along with a 29 foot wider field of view of 359 feet at 1000 yards.
AND last but not least...
The "TA" in the title stands for Tracking Assistant. This feature logs the last three ranges either by compass in the EL Range or via the Tracking Assist in their mobile application. You can use this information to help you locate where you took a shot from and also help you to recover your animal.
FRR Forehead Rest
Handheld rangefinding just got more precise with the FRR Forehead Rest. With three points of contact finding game or exacting ranges are exponentially better. Note: forehead rest is sold separately and so you can remove this forehead rest if you don't want to use it. Also, it's worth noting that the EL Range TA will fit in a medium Marsupial Gear Enclosed Binoular Pack with the FRR Forehead Rest attached. The above photo shows the binoculars with the case open and the photo below is with the bino pack closed.
Which rangefinder has the best glass?
We will take you through all these in upcoming reviews but that is the question I get asked most often and it had to be answered.
So for the first definitive comparison, I was able to put together a lineup of the following Swarovski binoculars:
First up - Gen1 EL Range and the new EL Range TA
With everything mounted on tripods and the suns’ light starting to fade, it was time to see where the EL TA’s would stack up against a proven staple of Swarovski's line. The EL TA’s are a big improvement over the Gen 1 EL Range.
Immediately noticeable was the improved edge to edge clarity. The wider FOV was also welcomed and appreciated!
I habitually went to push the left side to get a range and the button was not there. I had to laugh at that just a bit. A right-hand range button was a long time wish list item - and it's been incorporated on the new EL Range. The range button was responsive and light on touch to activate.
Most noticeable were the readouts in the EL TA’s were clean and crisp. Also, they were noticeably more crisp than any other rangefinder I have ever looked through and sported a crystal clear readout with no bleed or blurriness at all. The fact that the readouts are all in the right-hand tube might be responsible for this improvement. The Gen 1’s split the readouts between both the left and right tubes. For customers that experience trouble with their left eye, this will really solve their problems. I love this readout!
I found the initial rangefinding to be fast, accurate and mirrored the Gen 1. While testing this new EL Range TA, 1,978 yards was my farthest range. We will play with the consistency and accuracy as we continue to test these EL TA’s. I could easily switch to short ranges with ease and fast focusing. Simply put, this rangefinder is going to be a joy to use. At the time of this test, Swarovski’s Configurator App was not available.
So how did the EL TA’s stack up against the rest of the line?
When compared to the EL Swarovsion the EL TA’s had a better FOV with 23 more feet. The brightness and color were almost exact but I would give the edge to the EL TA’s because of the wider FOV.
The EL TA’s at 359 ft FOV are closer to the NL Pures in FOV than the others but still 40 feet short. That should tell you just how wide the FOV is in the NL’s. The EL TA’s are wide for a 10x and the NL’s make it feel narrow. As for the brightness and clarity, the EL TA’s are closer to the EL Swarovision. I am pleased with how well the EL TA’s looked and performed.
In the coming weeks and months, we will be putting the EL TA’s through the paces to see how well they perform both in glass quality and ballistic function and accuracy. This upgrade to the EL Range is much anticipated and long overdue. The changes at this point make them a winner for sure. Even if you only used the Line of Sight and Angle Compensation they are a much improved dual-purpose range finding binocular. So with the onboard ballistic program and Tracking Assistance, these might just be the perfect rangefinding binocular!
The EL Range TA's will ship from Swarovski on February 1. Pre-order your new EL Range TA binocular below.