Today, we’re putting two top binocular brands head to head, the Athlon Neos and the Vortex Crossfire. Let’s dive into their technical specifications, performance features, and overall usability to see which one might be the best fit for you.
Technical Specifications: Neos vs Crossfire
The Athlon Neos and Vortex Crossfire have several unique specifications that may impact your viewing experience. Below, we will compare these features in depth.
Neos: Roof (BAK4) | Crossfire: Roof
Both the Neos and the Crossfire use a Roof prism design. However, the Neos uses BAK4 prisms, known for delivering a round exit pupil and eliminating peripheral light distortions for clear, bright images. If you’re someone who values sharp image clarity, especially for bird watching or stargazing, the Neos may be your preference.
Neos: 10x | Crossfire: 8x
The Neos boasts a magnification of 10x, allowing for more detailed viewing at greater distances. In contrast, the Crossfire offers an 8x magnification. If you enjoy observing distant wildlife or celestial objects closely, the Neos could be your pick. However, if your focus is on wider landscape views or sporting events, you may find the Crossfire’s 8x magnification more fitting.
Objective Lens Diameter
Neos: 32 mm | Crossfire: 42 mm
The objective lens diameter relates to the amount of light that can enter the binoculars. Here, the Crossfire wins with a larger diameter of 42 mm, compared to Neos’ 32 mm. If you’re into twilight or low-light viewing, the Crossfire could be a better fit with its larger lens gathering more light.
Minimum Focus Distance
Neos: 9.8’ / 3 m | Crossfire: 6’ / 1.83 m
The Crossfire’s minimum focus distance is 6’ / 1.83 m, closer than the Neos at 9.8’ / 3 m. This means if you need to examine something up close, the Crossfire would be a better choice.
Exit Pupil Diameter
Neos: 3.2 mm | Crossfire: 5.3 mm
A larger exit pupil diameter provides a brighter image in low-light conditions. The Crossfire, with a diameter of 5.3 mm, outperforms the Neos, which has a diameter of 3.2 mm. This makes the Crossfire more suitable for low-light environments, such as dusk or dawn observations.
Neos: 17.2 mm | Crossfire: 17 mm
The Neos offers slightly greater eye relief (17.2 mm) compared to the Crossfire (17 mm). This may be a crucial factor if you wear glasses, as longer eye relief allows you to see the full field of view without removing your glasses. Here, the Neos has a minor advantage.
Neos: 56 to 72 mm / 2.2 to 2.8" | Crossfire: 57 to 74 mm / 2.2 to 2.9"
Both models offer similar ranges, but the Crossfire can be adjusted slightly wider (57 to 74 mm) than the Neos (56 to 72 mm). This means if you have a wider facial structure or prefer a broader interpupillary adjustment, the Crossfire might be the better option.
Neos: Center | Crossfire: Center
Both the Neos and Crossfire utilize a Center focus type, enabling you to adjust the focus for both eyes simultaneously. This is a common feature and advantageous for general binocular usage, be it wildlife watching, stargazing, or at sporting events.
Comparing these specifications in relation to your personal needs will help you make the right decision when choosing between the Athlon Neos and the Vortex Crossfire.
With these specifications in mind, let’s discuss their performance.
In the world of binoculars, performance measures like viewing angle and field of view are pivotal in the overall user experience. How does the Athlon Neos compare with the Vortex Crossfire on these parameters?
Viewing Angle: 7° (Actual)
Field of View: 367.5’ @ 1000 yd / 122 m @ 1000 m
The Athlon Neos offers an actual viewing angle of 7°. This is a generous viewing angle, providing a reasonably wide field of view.
Moreover, the Neos delivers a field of view measurement of 367.5’ @ 1000 yd or 122 m @ 1000 m. If you are scanning a large landscape, birdwatching, or tracking moving wildlife, this broad field of view could be advantageous.
Viewing Angle: 7.5° (Actual)
Field of View: 393’ @ 1000 yd / 130.48 m @ 1000 m
The Vortex Crossfire offers a slightly wider viewing angle of 7.5°. This might not seem like a significant difference at first glance, but over long viewing periods, the extra half-degree could provide a noticeable enhancement in your viewing experience.
In terms of the field of view, the Crossfire presents 393’ @ 1000 yd or 130.48 m @ 1000 m. This wider field of view allows you to see an additional 25.5 feet width at the same distance compared to the Neos.
Both the Athlon Neos and the Vortex Crossfire offer robust performance capabilities. However, the differences in their viewing angles and field of view make them more suitable for different viewing experiences.
Features: Fogproof and Waterproof Abilities
The Athlon Neos and Vortex Crossfire both have features designed to withstand various environmental conditions.
Fogproof: Yes, Nitrogen Filled
Water Resistance: Waterproof
Fogproof: Yes, Nitrogen Filled
Water Resistance: Waterproof
Both the Athlon Neos and Vortex Crossfire come equipped with fogproof and waterproof abilities. The fogproof feature, achieved by nitrogen filling, prevents internal fogging in various temperatures and humidity levels. This is a boon if you frequently use your binoculars in changing or extreme weather conditions.
Their water resistance capability makes both models waterproof, ensuring their performance is unaffected by rain or accidental splashes. This makes both the Neos and Crossfire suitable for outdoor activities such as bird watching, hunting, or boating, where water exposure is a possibility.
Both models are designed to ensure your exploration isn’t hindered by the weather. Next, we’ll consider their general attributes, such as size and weight.
Let’s finish our comparison by examining the physical dimensions and weights of the Neos and Crossfire.
Dimensions: 4.9 x 4.3" / 12.4 x 10.9 cm
Weight: 19.4 oz / 550 g
Dimensions: 6.3 x 5.2" / 16 x 13.21 cm
Weight: 23.8 oz / 675 g
Given these dimensions and weights, think about which one would be more comfortable for your needs. Which one is better suited for you in daily use?
After comparing the Athlon Neos and the Vortex Crossfire, it’s clear that both binoculars have their strengths. The Neos stands out with its higher magnification and lighter weight, while the Crossfire offers a larger objective lens and closer minimum focus distance.