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Critical Information Regarding The EL Range 42 TA Forehead Rest

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I have a set of the most recent (as of 2024) SWAROVSKI OPTIK EL Range TA 10X42 binoculars and like my SWAROVSKI OPTIK NL Pure 12×42, I wanted to run the forehead rest accessory for more stability. I acquired the FRR forehead rest and during that time I noticed I was having continuous low battery indicators in the heads up display while ranging, even with a brand new battery. The battery would not die out and I was able to run in this condition even through a 2-day NRL Hunter match.

However, I was having concerns about low battery warnings constantly displaying. Even if the battery is not low, I still want a reliable way to tell when it is truly low so I know when to replace the battery.

When I went to SHOT Show 2024, I stopped by the SWAROVSKI OPTIK booth and brought this issue to the attention of some representatives. They initially told me that I should send the binocular in and I said I would do so. But before I ended the conversation, I told them that I would test it without the FRR forehead rest because I was curious if that was causing issues.

They immediately responded to me stating to hold off on sending the binocular in because they were almost sure that the FRR was the problem. The representatives told me there was a known issue with the battery connection on the FRR with the EL Range and that there was supposedly a redesign. Had I mentioned the forehead rest earlier in the conversation, they would have immediately keyed in on this.

I was then told by the representatives to contact support about the FRR Forehead Rest and not the EL Range 10×42 binocular.

I ended up doing this after I returned home from SHOT 2024 and the SWAROVSKI support team had me send in the FRR. However, the response I received was that they had no issues with my FRR and would be sending it back with no repair or replacement.

I was quite disappointed by this news and then I inquired on the support thread about the option of buying a newer production copy of the FRR, as I had been told there was a revision in the design.

Support then followed up to my question stating they did have a new forehead rest model for the EL Range 42 that was still on its way from Austria and gave me the option to buy it.

They gave me the model number and I did a quick Google search and found that it was still “Coming Soon” on the major SWAROVSKI OPTIK dealer websites.

So I went ahead and purchased this new production model from SWAROVSKI and they also sent my previous FRR back.

As you can see, the old version is dubbed the FRR Forehead Rest EL Range and the new production version is dubbed the FRR-42 Forehead Rest EL Range 42.

Note: They also have a FRR-32 Forehead Rest EL Range 32.

The picture on the box of the FRR-42 shows a different design and after unboxing the FRR-42 the difference is plain as day.

SWAROVSKI OPTIK redesigned the FRR to the FRR-42 (and FRR-32) to be a two-piece design where the inner piece threads into the battery compartment just like a battery cover.

Then the outer piece secures onto the inner piece with a locking collar. Thus, the forehead rest portion of the accessory isn’t acting as the battery door.

The prior FRR is a single piece design and there is a knob that you turn in order to thread the ‘cover’ portion of the FRR onto the battery door to seal the compartment and create the negative terminal for the battery.

This redesign confirms what the SWAROVSKI OPTIK booth representatives at SHOT Show were stating about a connectivity issue with the FRR Forehead Rest.

If you have a current production EL Range 8×42 or 10×42 with Tracking Assistant, DO NOT get the FRR Forehead Rest EL Range. You need to get the FRR-42 Forehead Rest EL Range 42. Of course, if you have the 8×32 or 10×32, you will get the FRR-32 Forehead Rest EL Range 32.

The old, discontinued FRR Forehead Rest EL Range has an MPN of 49162, EAN of 9006325087505, and UPC of 708026491627.

The new FRR Forehead Rest EL Range 42 has a MPN of 49157, EAN of 9006325101065, and UPC of 708026491573.

I think the MPN is what most retailers will reference as I believe MPN = manufacturer part number.

It is unfortunate that SWAROVSKI OPTIK did not acknowledge the design problem and replace my FRR with the FRR-42. I basically spent $159 on the original FRR and shelled out another $150 for the FRR-42, and am stuck with the FRR.

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