13 Best Low-light Binoculars | Reviews and Buying Guide

Low-light binos are simply the best. With so much adventure possible every day; you may opt to go on any excursion, or visit a random mountain, park, or reserve on weekend with your friends or the best part “Stargazing”

For that you need to own a fine set of zooming accessories, not to miss even one nook. Binoculars could be found of any grade and prices depending on features offered or brand valued. But for you, the best additional option should be a perfect low light zooming lens ensuring the best output even in low light conditions.

Mostly trophy hunters, adventurers such as mountaineers in tough terrain, and sports passionates prefer low light binos for the best possible view.

Here’s a perfect list of the best available low light binos currently available at the market that could do the job perfectly even during low light conditions.

Plus an exclusive buying guide for you to peek into being an expert in choosing your perfect pair of optical.

Best Low Light Binoculars

Celestron - SkyMaster 25x70
9.7/10 Our Score

Noticeable specs:

  • Best for lowlight feature
  • 25 times of magnification
  • 70 mm objective lens
  • BAk4 Porro prism
  • 141 ft/1000 yeards field of view
  • 13 mm eye relief
  • Deep placed anti-reflection objectives


Our verdict:

It’s best used for long-range terrestrial viewing or astronomical viewing purpose. Even a 25x 100  model is available but, that one is too bulky and pricy in my opinion. This is a low-cost pair compared to its specs.

The humongous 70 mm diameter objectives and a tremendous zooming caliber with multicoated optics and Bak4 Porro prisms have made it a fine piece amongst the low light binos with a fine 141 ft field of view at 1000 yards. A rather small 13mm Eye-relief is offered in it.

A polycarbonate build with a bridge and hinges of metal and thumb grooves(indents) on the lower part would need your whole hand to balance as they have a heavier build towards the front and you may trip them forwards if careless,(different weight distribution model).

A 16mm deep placement of objectives has been tried for weight care that also protects from external adversities to the objectives. The model has an easy fit on the tripod and serves as a decent-looking gadget in your excursion.

Things we like:
  • Decent zooming capacity
  • Big objectives
  • Low cost
  • Metal build  offers durability
  • Deep placed multicoated optics
  • BAk4 prisms
  • Much cheaper
Areas of improvement:
  • Bulkier yet worth it
SkyGenius 10 x 50 Binoculars
9.8/10 Our Score

Noticeable specs:

  • Bk7 glass Porro prism
  • prominent central focus knob
  • 267 feet at 1000 yards of field view
  • Multicoated optics
  • shock-resistant rubber-armored



Our Verdict:

Embedding the aspherical lens within a 1.8 pounds heavy body, the Bk7 glass Porro prism holder could be your best low-light gadget. The Bk7 however is considered a low grade over BK47.

It has a large prominent central focus knob and a supportive diopter adjustment on the right side to adjust the inter-pupillary distance to fit your eye socket placement.

An absolute shock-resistant rubber-armored casing makes it a tough guy. Multicoated optics are provided which help in anti fringing and maintain anti-reflection assisted by fold-down eyecups to the eyepiece.

The body being heavy is tripod mountable. It has a field view of 267 feet at 1000 yards. The body is not waterproof but water-resistant to some extent. A CP grade protection on every optical makes it a great entry-level bino. The prices however sound cheap but feel premium.


Things we like:
  • 10 times Zoom capacity
  • Fine objectives
  • Shock resistive armor
  • Cheap price
  • Water resistant body

Areas of Improvement:
  • Uses typical Bk7 glass prism
  • Definitely not a trendy model
Nikon 8248 ACULON A211
9.9/10 Our Score

Noticeable Specs:

  • Lead and Argon-free Eco-Glass
  • Bak4 dielectric coated prism
  • fine-ridged focus
  • Slip-resistant rubber armor
  • twist-up Click Up Eyecups
  • 60 degrees angle of view
  • Nitrogen purging


Our Verdict:

Having an Aspherical design lens featuring a Lead and Argon-free Eco-Glass build is what they focus most on their advertisements, but the product is pretty solid. The Bak4 dielectric coated prism along with anti-reflection multicoated optics make these bins premium.

The large central fine-ridged focus wheel for focus adjustment to the mid is what you love the most in this bino, as the focus goes so smooth while rotating it. Slip-resistant rubber armor with matte black coloration would add an extensively premium finish.

The bino is tripod mountable for keen bird watchers and has twist-up Click Up Eyecups for a proper eye rest. A balanced color field it helps to avoid fringes or distortion.

The objectives offer a 60 degrees angle of view. Water-resistance offered by O-ring sealing and fog proofing with Nitrogen purging make it a perfect outdoor bino.



Things we like:
  • Lead and Arsenic free glass build
  • Dielectric coated prism
  • Rubber armor
  • Balanced contrast
  • Water-resistant

Areas of Improvement:
  • Personal taste


Swarovski Optik 15x56
9.9/10 Our Score

Noticeable Specs:

  • 15 times of magnification
  • 56 mm of multicoated objectives
  • Bak4 roof prisms
  • 78mm of field viewing at 100 yards
  • Magnesium build
  • 1200 gm 16 mm of eye relief
  • Twist-up eyecups




Our Verdict:

Built with fluoride-containing opticals within a magnesium build makes this bino a  lightweight model, yet the extra features in it like the extra lock dials and big opticals make it a heavy one.It has about 15 times of magnification and 56 mm multicoated objectives. A large Central focus knob with a lockable diopter adjust dial stays to the center.

The build is slightly extra weighed about 1200 gm (weighs about of a bottle of wine) with typical Bak4 roof prisms with multiple fine coatings to maintain the optimum imagery accuracy. It offers up to 16 mm of eye relief and a (during optimum viewing-images could be shaky). A 78mm of field viewing at 100 yards, which I’d say, is a pretty nice feature.

The closed bridge modeled body gives it a rather sexy Femina design. The eyepiece supports twist-up eyecups for a proper viewing experience.


Things we like:
  • Fine image adjustments
  • Fine objectives
  • Fantastic design
  • An established brand

Areas of improvement:
  • Overpriced
  • Not a lightweight option


Steiner 10x50 Tactical Binocular
9.8/10 Our Score

Noticeable Specs:

  • 10 times of magnification
  • 50 mm of objectives
  • Sports auto-focus
  • 5mm exit pupil
  • 57 degrees- apparent view angle
  • Field of view:302-foots/ 1000 yards.



Our Verdict:

The Steiner 1050 built as Porro roof prismatic has multicoated Optics which help maintain a fine imagery output for viewers. Its best-in-class individual sports auto-focus system helps to maintain a perfect focus upon your target or let’s say your favorite player on the pitch.

The O ring sealing serves waterproofing upon the Makrolon polycarbonate housing.The NBR ARMOR ensures oil and petroleum resistance with a camouflaging military color to the body.

The body weighs about 35 ounces and is a relatively shorter and more convenient model.

A 5mm exit pupil offers perfect color precision alongside its multicoated optics . It offers  57 degrees of apparent view angle and a 302-foot field of view at 1000 yards.

The sports auto focus mode helps to focus without you manually doing it at a distance of more than 22 yards. It has terminal fold-down rubber eyecups to fit your eyes while bearing a  16 mm of eye relief.

Things we like:
  • Lightweight design
  • Short and handy model
  • NBR armor
  • Sports Auto focus mode
Areas of Improvement:
  • Military design may be an off to many


Carson® 3D 10x50
9.8/10 Our Score

Noticeable Specs:

  • 3D lens
  • 10 times of magnification
  • 50 mm of objectives
  • Phase-corrected Bak4 prism
  • Slip-resistant armor
  • 20 mm of eye relief.
  • Central focus knob



Our Verdict:

One of the best models that would suit any user perfectly.  It has 10 times magnification and 50 mm of objectives. Carson binos are very user-friendly with pretty color housings that never look too funky or exaggerated.

A fully multicoated 3D lens feature along with a phase-corrected Bak4 prism that gives the perfect unscathed image to your eyes. It has a relatively long eye relief with twist-down eyecups.

The binos have slip-resistant armor built with Nitrogen purged inside to create a fog-proof atmosphere plus O ring sealings to provide waterproofing features.

The build, however, contains magnets that could interfere with users of pacemakers or ICDs. The single hinge close bridge model has a plastic Central focus knob which is easy to turn and adjusts the frame perfectly. It has 20 mm of eye relief.


What we like:
  • BAk4 prism
  • Fine multicoated optics
  • Slip resistant armor
  • An amazing brand with incredibly aggressive pricing

Areas of improvement:
  • Not applicable for pacemaker users
  • Slightly smaller objective diameter


Vortex Optics Razor UHD Binoculars 10x50
9.9/10 Our Score

Noticeable Specs:

  • 50 mm objective
  • UHD glass objectives
  • 10 x of magnification
  • XR plus and Armor Trek glass coating
  • 65 degrees of apparent view
  • Field of View: 341-foots /1000 yards
  • Eye-relief of 18 mm


Our Verdict:

With the UHD glass objectives to limit the chromatic and spherical aberrations, the vortex razor with a big 50 mm objective and 10 x of magnification could be your perfect low light pair. The Phase corrected Abbe Koeing roof prisms hosting an XR plus fully multicoated optics with Armor Trek glass coating serve undistorted imagery with its wide 65 degrees of apparent viewing angle.

The O-ring sealing for waterproofing and Argon purging for fog proofing is no excuse here. The large center focus dial with locking dioptric correction rests upon a closed bridge configuration. The model is tripod mountable with an optional adapter.

A 341-foot field of view at 1000 yards, Locking right-eye dioptric correction for balancing the wide interpupillary adjustment. An extra-long 18 mm of eye relief helps to look through the specs and eyepiece without any issue.

It also has slip-resistant thumb grips resting on the underside of binos. The pair comes with a bunch of accessories: a Carry case and pouch, with straps wipes, and harness.

Things we like:
  • XR plus fully multicoated optics
  • ArmorTrek coatings
  • Extra-long eye relief
  • Thumb grips with slip-resistant armor
  • Lifetime warranty
Areas of Improvement:
  • Smaller objectives
  • High pricing


Eschenbach Sektor D 8x56
9.7/10 Our Score

Noticeable specs:

  • 8 X magnification
  • 56 mm objectives
  • Field of view: 343 degrees at 1000 yards
  • Wide viewing angle: 52 degrees
  • Open-bridge configuration
  • 7mm of the exit pupil



Our Verdict:

With the 8 times magnification and humongous 56 mm objectives, the EschenbackSektor with Bak4 Roof Prisms in the insides has the housing terminals shut with Fully multicoated optics that offer you a  wide viewing angle of 52 degrees.

Its Open bridge configuration helps maintain a lightweight figure with a Center focus dial attached to it. The twist-up eyecups with Rubber Armor build for external protection. The bino offers your eyes a 343 degrees field of view at 1000 yards and 52 degrees of wide viewing angle experience.

However, a relatively shorter eye relief has a bunch of people pissed. The bino itself is a gem for a low-light view with an optimum 7mm of the exit pupil, probably the best on our list.

What we like:
  • Open Bridge configuration
  • Rubber armor
  • Water resistant
  • Perfect objectives size
  • 7mm of exit pupil

Areas of Improvement:
  • Shoter eye relief


UsoGood 12X50 Binoculars
9.8/10 Our Score


Notable Specs:

  • IPX7 ratings
  • Up to 95.58 % of light transmission
  • Nitrogen purging
  • Insides of phase-corrected Bak4 glass prisms
  • Large central focus dial upon the bridge
  • 12 times of magnification
  • 50 mm of objectives
  • Rubber armor



Our Verdict:

The Chinese low-cost binos could be your perfect pair if you want the best features in a cheat price range. Yes, cheat I’d say as there are a bunch of Western brands charging you a fortune for awesome binos while these Chinese pair provide all the specs you wish for, just at “80 bucks”.Amazing Innit?

The body has waterproofing with IPX7 ratings, Nitrogen purging, insides of phase-corrected Bak4 glass prisms, and a large central focus dial upon the bridge. The right eye adjusts dial regulates the interpupillary distance to just fit on your eyes.

12 times of magnification with 50 mm of objectives offer a 95.58 % of light transmission with 4.2 mm of exit pupil which would definitely not be good if you ask for maximum magnification but the image is low light friendly due to larger objectives.

Definitely not a slender design and seems like an inverted shuttle, with relatively balanced build specs, I’d say. Not a creative design yet, offers the best value for every penny paid. The relatively thinner rubber armor has a nice grip pattern upon a polycarbonate housing.

The eyepiece area has twist-up eyecups, with plastic housing and feels harder on the eyes. The body has relatively much lesser eye relief i.e. 7.44mm of it; not a good choice for species, focus dial adjusts aggressively as compared to others with relatively slow adjustment and no adjustment markings upon the body.

About 750 grams of the body offers a relatively narrower eyepiece of about 18 mm. The coatings upon the body are yet to be announced but it’s kinda okay on a cheap bino with such good features.


Things we Like:
  • Best grade light transmission
  • The most affordable entry-level bino with specs of mid-ranged ones
  • Lightweight
  • BAK4 lens
  • A pretty solid design

Areas of improvement:
  • Because of a heavy price cut, visible defects won’t shock you.
  • Lack of proper markings
  • Question on the build material
  • Relatively thinner armor
  • Some contrast and fringe defects


Nikon 7246 Action 12x50
9.9/10 Our Score


Notable Specs:

BaK4 traditional prisms

12 times magnification

50 mm objectives

Field of view: 341-400/1000 yards

Apparent angle of view: 60 degrees

Twist-up click-stop rubber eyecups

Eye relief: 17.2 mm


Our Verdict:

As with all the high-end Nikon binos, Nikon Action Extreme also offers an eco glass with a Lead and Arsenic-free manufacturing process. The BaK4 traditional prisms with dielectric coatings and fully multicoated optics offer a wide 60 degrees apparent angle of view with absolute precision and quality deliverance as compared to the majority of others in the market. Nitrogen-filled fog proofing and O rings seal for waterproofing help to make the most of it, outdoors. It shares modeling with Aculon along with twist-up click-stop rubber eyecups. The exit pupil diameter is 4.2mm only yet the humongous 50 mm objectives inlet all the light you require for the perfect view even in low light conditions. Plus, the objectives are clippable with the neck strap to prevent falling off. It also offers 341 to 400 plus degrees of field view at 1000 yards. The eyepiece has ocular rainguards along with 17.2 mm of eye relief.

In short, it’s the perfect pair but is definitely costly due to branding and the 25 years warranty offered with the product.

Things we Like:
  • Solid build
  • Best in class optics
  • Comes with a bunch of accessories
  • 25 years of warranty

Areas of Improvement:
  • Personal choice
Bushnell Spectator Sport Binocular 12x50
9.8/10 Our Score

Notable Specs:

  • 50 mm of objectives
  • 10 times of magnification
  • 7.1 degrees viewing angle
  • Shock absorbent model
  • Field of views: 265 fts per 1000 yards.




Our Verdict:

The Bushnell Permafocus series comes with 4-5 models for your action pact viewing experience as a spectator on a sports occasion with a focus-free design under the polycarbonate casing that offers the best wide-angled view with best in class low light performance. The prism type is Bk7 Porro prisms. It offers 7.1 degrees viewing angle and has a non-slip Shock absorbent “shocks” modeled sheath with a retro design. Basically designed for a precise long-distance view experience as in rifle scope. It offers a 265 feet field of views per 1000 yards. The Fold-down eyecups offer a nice view of the bino.

Though precisely used for hunting purpose, this bino is one of the predecessors of the modern-day binos with specific low light features.


Things we like:
  • Premium Build material
  • Non-slip armor
  • Best vision detailing on the list
Areas of Improvement:
  • High pricing
  • Typical model
  • Outdated Bk7glass


Vortex Optics Viper HD 10x42
9.9/10 Our Score

Notable Specs:

  • ED Glass
  • XR fully multi-coated optics
  • Anti-reflective Armor Tek coatings
  • Apparent view angle: 65 degrees



Our Verdict:

The Extra-Low dispersion glass built in the Phase corrected and Dielectric coated glass helps create a perfect viewing experience through this pair. The 10X magnification and 42 mm of objectives offer a balanced 4.2mm exit pupil diameter.

The XR fully multi-coated optics offer the anti-reflective property on the lens. The Armor Tek coatings on the body with 65 degrees of apparent view angle indeed is well balanced and the Lightweight polycarbonate housing encases the Argon purged body with fog proofing and O ring sealing for waterproofing.

A large adjustable central focus dial on the rear mid is easy to use even with outdoor gloves and the apparatus itself is tripod mountable. It has twist-up eyecups and an adjustable lock diopter for inter-pupillary distance regulation for any viewer(56-75mm).

What we like:
  • ED glass
  • Multicoated optics
  • Fine prism coatings
  • Best in class specs
  • Adjust diopter
  • Lifetime warranty
Areas of Improvement:
  • Heavily priced yet worth it.
Zeiss Terra ED 10x42
9.8/10 Our Score

Notable Specs:

  • SCHOTT Extra-Low dispersion prism
  • 88 % of light transmission
  • 8X magnification
  • 42 mm of objectives
  • 5.25 mm exit pupil
  • Field of view:376.5 mm/ 1000 yards


Our Verdict:

SCHOTT Extra-Low dispersion prism In the Zeiss terra has Schmidt Pechan roof prism design. The opticals promise you 88 % of light transmission throughout the body along with nitrogen-filled fog proofing within a Reinforced Polycarbonate housing for a comparatively lightweight design. It has a large central focus knob on the rear of its closed bridge.

The 8X magnification and 42 mm of objectives offer a 5.25 mm exit pupil. The body design almost resembles Carson which we discussed above. Zeiss has a hydrophobic design with 5 feet and 25 inches of close focus distance and  376.5 mm of field view at 1000 yards.

It has  Twist-up rubber eyecups for eye placement balance and a right eye dioptric correction which offers up to 58 -75 mm of interpupillary adjustment.

It has extra-long 18 mm eye relief. The body has a weight of 725 grams with amazing accessories like Binofix Tripod adapter and carries straps.


Things we Like:
  • Hydrophobic design
  • Best grade optic arrangement
  • Shorter and handy model

Areas of Improvement:
  • Schmidt-Pechan roof prism over BAk4 may sound off

Buying Guide To Best Low-Light Binoculars

Magnification: Low-light binos could range from 8x to about 25 x .Magnification is the key specs you always look for in a bino. Higher the magnification, better is your viewing capacity. Imagine you looking to a raven and complimenting its body and wings while your friend is describing the struggling worm on its beak with a 25 x magnification bino. Though sharpness is always a question, we are already a part of the number trap. Higher the specs, the worthier the hefty price.

Objective lens: Basically for low light binos, bigger objectives matter the most. More aperture exposure means more light inlet and brighter image conversion. Every bino is worthy during daylight but the low light ones could do wonders during dawn or dusk.

An objective of 42 mm won’t be enough this time. A minimum of 50mm with certified anti-reflective and scratchproof full multicoating upon the optics is always preferable.

Actual field of view: More the actual field of view, more is your viewing range. A bino with a narrower viewing range could help you see the batsman on the pitch while a wide actual field of view bino would help to see you a beauty behind cheering for her favorite from the stands.

Apparent field of view: The word apparent means visible. Visible and actual values differ in most cases and for binos the difference is noticeable. Always buy those with higher apparent field of view or I’d say closer apparent value on comparision to actual value.

Weight: Well finding a perfect low light bino with lowest possible weight could be tabled and discussed but you can’t find a really lightweight pair under half a kilo. The reason is its objectives. Bigger objectives always add on weight to the binos so ones upto 1.5 pounds are preferable.

Eye relief: An issue for people with spectacles while buying a bino is eye relief. Those with longe eye relief provide good space for your specs to play around alongside the bino while those which do not offer these could make the viewing experience complicated. Best eye relief offered in binos are above 16mm.

Ideal cost range: Well an entry level bino is always available within 100 bucks and are the most affordable category. The price range even holds one of our elites. Yes, the USOGOOD is an entry-level bino with such good specs offered below 100 bucks and definitely justifies your every penny paid.

The binos ranging from 100-400 bucks and are popularly graded as mid-ranged binos. Most of our elites off the list belong to this category. These binos have much variances in shape quality and build materials with some being aggressively priced while most of them are vaguely priced. So finding the best one in this category would definitely test your taste with good binos.

And finally those above 500 bucks are premium ones or popularly High-end binos. They possess all the finest grade of elements possibly ever used while manufacturing binos. Best part with high-end ones are you just have to buy the “latest” model and that’s it. Quality deliverance is never a question . They have absolutely the finest prisms, finest coating technology, the finest build materials and the mos ergonomic build of all.

Final Thoughts:

Well, after viewing all the models and our reviews could have left you in a bigger dilemma with choices to makeover such a wonderful series of low-light ability binos fitting to the top tier list.

If you’re visiting a park, check out our review on the Best binos for Yellowstone.

The exit pupil diameter is calculated by objective diameter off on the magnification potential. i.e. a 10x/50 bino gives only a 50/10= 5mm exit pupil mark, much better than the general 42mm category. Yet, a higher spec is preferable for the occasion.

But here’s the catch. Low light binos are suited the best during low light conditions so you should search for binos with higher exit pupils. Yes, the simple logic behind this is, the farther the pupil extends, the more curvature is exposed which traps more and more light rays to make the object visible to you. So, basically, the binos with the biggest objectives should be your first priority.

The best low light binos generally possess an exit pupil of rather higher tire i.e.as closer to 7mm(the highest dilation of your iris to support light inlet) and an aperture above the general 42mm and a relative magnification of 8x or lower with it, to ensure better light inlet and for brighter and clearer image output to your retina.

But, the larger you are, the heavier you fall. Binos with bigger opticals are not handy at all and always require a stand to rest upon. Imagine you stargazing and raising your elbow with a dumbbell sized bino upon your hand, exhausting innit?

So, the best we would suggest you is, go through the list and find the most light-weighed bino out of them with the best balanced optics, best quality coatings, best ratings and budget friendly ones as the list already has those who would offer best low light experiences out of other thousands of binos out there in the market.


Which is the best lowlight bino?

Well, personally I would love to try the lowest budget option that is the Usogood 12X50 , because after researching on all low light ones and getting the most economic option out of it would be much clever as it’s in the list of elites.

The only thing that sets me off is it’s warranty issue and it could lack in quality as compared to others.

What makes a bino good at low light conditions?

Binos with bigger objectives basically win over others in low light conditions. The basic logic is; the bigger the aperture, relatively more light it traps. Other factors affect during viewing experience too: eye piece adjustments, locking diopter availability, Coating upon the objectives and prism quality with spectral representation on your retina.

What’s the best occasion to use low light binos?

Well, the most popular occasion is stargazing. You could use them for locating a farther object in the evening time. Low light binos could be good on any occasion as they offer better contrast balanced images and are more carefully designed. People living nearby forest would use them often for checking on wild beasts.

Are low light binos the most expensive?

It’s not only the low-light binos that determine the costliness of binoculars. The build materials, the tests run on them along with technological upgrades upon their components, branding, and materials used to manufacture make the binos worth a hefty price. For example, the binos with better prisms or better opticals with the finest possible coatings are definitely graded on mid-range or high range prices. To find the costliest ones; search for Zeiss, Bushnell’s, or Zeiss binos which adopt fine edge technology and are branded to add on to their market value.

What are the differences between Bk7, BaK4 and Schmidt Pechan?

So , Bk7 is a commonly used traditional prism glass best built in Germany. Later on, the Bak4 came in the market with better imagery resolution and lesser internal reflection to offer the best quality imagery to users. Comparatively the Schmidt Pechan are the most commonly used binoculars prisms which are built worldwide in any brands of binoculars while the abbe koeing are much technical to make and are made only on selective 6 companies of the world. The Abbe koeing embedded binos are relatively longer as compared to those with schmidt-pechan-prism.

Why is the lockable diopter always on the right eyepiece?

Well not much with technicality, but the reason could be majority of the population being right-handed, like as in motorbikes which have accelerators always on the right, or even with minute details like the bottle cap always opening to the right.

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