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Author Topic: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?  (Read 3771 times)

Offline jetjockey

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Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« on: May 18, 2023, 08:17:11 PM »
Bored at hotel with an ice cold beer, and I was just wondering why Kowa Spotters don’t have the love that other brand spotters do in the hunting world?  Most reviews put them in front of Swaro, for less money, and they are super popular in the bidding world.  I e compare my “inexpensive” TSN-601 to Swaro’s, and it was right on the Swaro’s heels.  I haven’t been able to compare a high end Kowa, but everything I read and hear says to most eyes, they are superior in almost every aspect, for less money. Is it because Kowa doesn’t make rifle scopes and advertise in the hunting world, or just because?

Offline bobcat

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2023, 08:20:18 PM »
Probably because they're cheaper, so people think they're not as good. Maybe. Who knows. I have a Kowa spotting scope, but just a low end model. I think I paid around $500 twenty years ago.

Offline zwickeyman

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2023, 04:42:05 AM »
I have 2 Kowa's

554 and 884

They are very impressive and have replaced my Swaro spotters

I think there are a few reasons they dont get their due and you mentioned a couple of them

1) They dont advertise to the hunting community like Swaro
2) They dont have an armor coating and scratch easily. They just dont feel as durable
3) They dont make scopes
4) They are cheaper and some people equate price with quality

I put my 884 up against a ATX85 and feel the Kowa is better in every aspect except eye relief, the ATX/STX eye piece is very nice and forgiving

New my 884 was 2400.00 to my door. The ATX was pushing 4000.00 . So I was able to buy a used 554 and still have 500.00 left over
« Last Edit: May 19, 2023, 06:51:34 AM by zwickeyman »
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Offline Magnum_Willys

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2023, 06:26:37 AM »
For even more savings chk out the maven…….

Offline Stein

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2023, 06:44:13 AM »
I agree, they don't sponsor people on YouTube and TV.

It's literally to the point where you can take a look at a guy you run across during hunting season and make a pretty good guess at who he watches based upon the gear he is carrying.

Offline Houndhunter

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2023, 06:45:29 AM »
Great glass, I run a swaro but I've been super impressed with kowa. I don't think they advertise to our market as much as the competition :twocents:.

Offline frazierw

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2023, 06:54:51 AM »
I have one and love it, the fine focus knob on the Kowa is way better than what swaro does.  I don't know why anyone would buy a swaro over a kowa.

Offline follow maggie

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2023, 10:55:10 AM »
I think a lot of the reason is just that you don’t see them in stores anywhere.

Offline pickardjw

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2023, 11:29:15 AM »
I see them get a lot of love on other sites. The 553/554 has been the #1 recommended compact spotter for a while now from my experience. Now that swaro has that ATC though it's probably the "budget" option. I have a second hand 602. Seems like people have been comparing them to Swaro for years now, with plenty of people saying the Kowa's contend well with Swaro.

Like others have said though, probably just a marketing thing as to why people that aren't looking for them don't find them. Some interesting reads below.

https://backwoodspursuit.com/best-spotting-scope-for-hunting/

https://rokslide.com/forums/threads/swarovski-atc-vs-ats-vs-kowa-553-updated-4-26-23.301550/

Offline b23

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2023, 12:10:56 PM »
I've never been nearly as impressed with Swaro spotters like I have their binos.  Swaro binos are always amazing but for me their spotters just don't give me that same impressive image and I think the Kowa's I've been behind were slightly better.  The Kowa spotters, IMO, are a lot of bang for the buck and even when you take price out of it, I think the Kowa has a little better image.  That's certainly not to say the Swaro spotter isn't still extremely good but if you can get the same or even better for less with the Kowa, why not get the Kowa.

Offline Wanttohuntmore

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2023, 09:03:06 AM »
I went on a high end spotter search 2 years ago.   Trying to find a good kowa to look through,  next to a swaro,  was difficult.   Trying to find the model of kowa I wanted was also difficult.   It was cheaper than the swaro but not significantly cheaper,  so I went with the swaro knowing their marketing keeps the resale value high.   Very happy with the purchase but also know I'd be happy with a kowa.   I've got a nikon ed50 which is quite impressive for the cost so I know marketing definitely increases their perceived value.

Offline zwickeyman

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2023, 11:14:49 AM »
I think a lot of the reason is just that you don’t see them in stores anywhere.

Thats a great point
The mountains are calling and I must go

Offline jeffro

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2023, 11:37:56 AM »
No experience with them
Bought a Leupold 60x about 20 years ago
Never regretted it!
Their customer support is next to none
One shot. One kill!

Offline Pnwrider

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2023, 02:11:25 PM »
I went on a high end spotter search 2 years ago.   Trying to find a good kowa to look through,  next to a swaro,  was difficult.   Trying to find the model of kowa I wanted was also difficult.   It was cheaper than the swaro but not significantly cheaper,  so I went with the swaro knowing their marketing keeps the resale value high.   Very happy with the purchase but also know I'd be happy with a kowa.   I've got a nikon ed50 which is quite impressive for the cost so I know marketing definitely increases their perceived value.
This is where I’m at right now. Can walk into any major hunting retailer and find a swaro to look through. Kowa, not so much. I’m looking at the 80mm bodies from both and it’s about a $1300 difference. I don’t think that delta is enough to sway me to kowa, knowing swaros have great resale.

Offline couesbitten

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Re: Kowa Spotters. Why so little love?
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2023, 06:35:00 AM »
Sold my Swaro ATS 80 and bought a Kowa 554, love it and don't regret the decision.
With the catching ends the pleasure of the chase. - Abraham Lincoln

 


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