Compact scopes

Subject: Compact scopes
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 2021 16:52:48 +1100
I am looking to buy a compact and light-weight scope as my first scope purchase, to use as my one and only scope.  My priority is a compact and lightweight one that will fit easily into a daypack, be convenient on public transport and packs into luggage for flying. That goes for a tripod too, which I also need. I am small myself and know I just won’t use anything hefty and bulky, so my criteria are a bit different to a lot of other birders. The only scopes I have looked through in the field are full size hefty ones. 

I am becoming overloaded with info & choices. I have veered all over the place in my decision making from Pentax PF 65ED II (not the most compact), to Kowa TSN-501 (entry level) to Kowa TSN-553 (most expensive of my short list?) to Minox MD 50, and now the Vortex Razor. I have not seen any of these in the flesh, as far as I know. Being smaller scopes, their magnification is less. Is 30x a useful maximum, or am I likely to find that limit frustrating? 

I have read favourable info about the Vortex Razor, though the opinions are several years old. But have not come across any independent reviews or comments at all on the Minox. The Minox has a zoom range of 16-30x, compared to the Vortex which I think goes to 33x. If anyone has experience of the quality of the Minox I would love to hear from you. 

Elisabeth Dark
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