The 17 Best Binoculars [2021] | Reviews & Buying Guide

Whether you’re just looking at the available varieties or are in dire need of one, this article delves deep into the best binoculars that offer great value for the price. I’ve put in a lot of effort to make sure that you get the correct information on noteworthy pair of binoculars.

I am a bird-enthusiast and have kept an eye out for fantastic finches for over two decades now. I visit wetlands and conservation areas and help fellow bird watchers choose the best gear they can afford.

Even as a kid, I used to play around with my dad’s Porro Prism binoculars. Both nature and binoculars have always fascinated me. That interest has carried on to this day and I know just how exciting and overwhelming buying binoculars can get.

Before we get on with our search for the best pair of binoculars in the market, let’s quickly get on with the buying guide so it’s easier to decide, shall we?

How To Select The Perfect Binoculars For The Money?

how to choose best binoculars for the money

There are a wide variety of binoculars available on the market today. Since there are ones that go from few hundred bucks to thousands of dollars and come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, you’ll find it daunting if you’re just setting out to buy your first pair of binoculars.

I’ve made a list of things you should always consider when buying a binocular. Just go through these and you should get a fair idea of the basics to make an informed decision.

Uses

You shouldn’t get a pair of binoculars that gets foggy or is affected by the rain if you’re going somewhere with high humidity and precipitation. You never know when it’s about to rain in some places and if you’re somebody who’s always outdoors like me, any binocular other than the waterproof binocular varieties is a terrible choice.

If you intend to use your binoculars at theaters or watching sports matches, you probably shouldn’t get one with high magnification as that’s really not needed in those places. If you go around hunting or bird watching often, looking at image-stabilized binoculars with high magnification is worth it.

Binocular Specs and What They Mean

If you’re new to binoculars and have ever looked up reviews or specs on binoculars, you’ve probably noticed symbols and numbers. You may have wondered what they could mean.

If we’ve got a binocular that says 10×50, the number on the front means the magnification that the binocular provides. 10 in this case. The second number after the x means the size of the lens in millimeters. 50 mm in this case.

So, 10×50 just means the binocular has a 10x magnification (more on magnification in the section below) and a 50mm lens.

Magnification

Magnification is how big something looks through the lens in relation to the naked eyes.

Still, confused?

Think of it like this- if you use a lens to look at things, it just makes things appear bigger. If something has a 3x magnification, it just means that anything you look through it appears 3 times bigger.

The magnification of binoculars usually ranges between 7x-10x. Somebody who casually uses a binocular for watching a movie or sports, or a child looking at the birds on a nearby porch would be very happy with 7x magnification. Others- like hunters or researchers who need to look at finer details may need binoculars with 10x magnification or even higher.

However, going higher is not always better as more magnification means that you are only looking at a smaller area and if your binocular isn’t very stable, what you see will be very shaky.

Apart from binoculars with fixed magnification, some let you adjust the magnification within a certain range. These are called Zoom binoculars and come in very handy as they bring out the best of both worlds.

Magnification of Zoom binoculars is shown as 5-24x, and these numbers represent lower and higher magnification respectively. Since the optics of these binoculars is constructed to work best at a particular focus, you may lose some clarity in other settings.

More magnification power isn’t always good per se as they tend to be in the upper price range. If you’re looking for affordable binoculars (I know I am!) that feel and perform great, you’ll have to stick to low magnification binoculars.

If you are unsure about which one you should get, just go for one in the 8x-10x range.

Optics 

The size of the lens is a determining factor in how bright an image will be. A wider lens allows more light to pass through and as a result, improved viewing conditions. The size of the lens also has nothing to do with the field of view.

A bigger lens means that it will produce crisp clear images but the binocular will be heavier as a result.

Wondering about the field of view? A field of view of 5-7 degrees is considered pretty standard on normal binoculars and anything larger than 7 degrees is said to have a wide field of view.

As magnification goes on, the field of view goes down as there is less to see. What this means is that, if you are trying to see a large flock of birds, you’re better off with lesser magnification as this would mean that you don’t have to move your binoculars to see from end to end.

Binoculars are made out of optical parts that can reflect light – sort of like a mirror. Any reflection within the binocular means that there will be a loss in brightness.

So, every air-glass surface on the best binoculars is coated with an anti-reflective coating. Coatings can be expensive, so there are a variety of options to choose from.

There’s the full coating which means that all surfaces are coated. And there’s full multi-coating which means that the surface has been coated several times. Fully multi-coated ones are great, but these tend to be pretty expensive too.

Eye relief is also something that binocular-enthusiasts talk about pretty often. It just means the distance between the lens and your eyes. Longer than 13-15 mm is considered long eye relief. Less than that, and you’ll regret buying the binocular if you regularly wear glasses.

Having a long distance in front of your eyes means that you can use binoculars comfortably even when wearing glasses. In fact, the optics community is big on helping guys with specs use binoculars as conveniently as possible.

The size of the lens is also important when it comes to what purpose it will be used for. A smaller lens allows less light to pass as compared to a large one, and so, won’t be as bright as a binocular with a large lens. So, smaller binoculars work well as portable ones for use in the daylight and larger ones are great in low light and poor viewing conditions.

How We Rank Binoculars?

The binoculars are ranked on the basis of how well they perform for a certain activity. I’ve tested each binocular out in the field and so, which ones I prefer is largely based on how using that particular model felt.

I’ve also taken care to rank binoculars based on how much it costs and how much magnification it provides.

Binoculars are usually limited to their intended purpose of use. A binocular for stargazing is suitable for viewing objects very far away and since it has large objective lenses, it’s not meant to be a portable hunting binocular.

Even the best all-purpose binoculars may lack in certain aspects, and I’ve taken care to mention shortcomings when possible.

I’ve mainly focused on the construction, portability, brightness, image stabilization, price, and overall utility after purchase.

I’ve chosen the binoculars which perform the best in all categories and placed them under ‘Our Pick’. These were amazing in every aspect and well-suited for professional use as well. Exceptional brightness even under low-light conditions, high resolution, improved stability, and comfort are some of the features you get with one of these.

The Premium Pick/ Runner-Up is the one which with stunning features but it’s pricy, so not many can afford it. If you have a bit of a budget to spare, these are just right for you.

Finally, the Budget Pick option is there to help with your search for entry-level or cheap binoculars that you can still enjoy. Despite the low prices, these pack a serious punch and tend to be portable as well. These are good enough for most birders and quite affordable even for somebody with little budget who is just getting into binoculars.

Let’s get on with it!

Best All-Purpose Binoculars

Our Pick | Athlon Optics Midas 8×42 ED Binoculars

Our Pick | Athlon Optics Midas 8x42 ED Binoculars
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Affordable
  • Exceptional clarity and resolution
  • Waterproof and fog proof
  • Cool design

Our Verdict 

The Midas 8×42 ED is a best-in-class and of the best compact binoculars available in the market today.

We haven’t placed it at the top of the list for nothing- the Midas 8×42 ED is worth every penny for the fantastic features it provides.

I really like the sleek design on this. It looks very cool and comes coated with a rubber armor so you don’t have to worry about scratches or easy damage to internal components.

The contour on the binocular also provides a non-slip grip which is very convenient. When you’re out on the field and wet, the last thing you want is to drop your binocular or lose grip when viewing.

You can adjust the eye relief to your liking, and eyeglass-wearers will also find this very convenient to use. 

It’s also waterproof and fog-proof- thanks to Argon purging. It also protects it from temperature fluctuations which is always good to have on a binocular as optics tend to get affected by high/low temperatures easily. 

It’s got quality pair of optics that are not susceptible to chromatic aberration, so you can enjoy the crisp and sharp image without any issues. The lenses are also fully multi-coated and have BaK-4 prisms which improve image quality and brightness.

It’s well-constructed and very durable- thus making it suitable for pretty much all sorts of uses. You could use it as a birding binocular or use it while hunting in humid conditions or relax at sports games or even gift your child one of these. These are inexpensive and your child will certainly love it.

The Midas 8×42 ED is, however, not suitable for stargazing. Even the best all-purpose binoculars excel at certain things and fail at some. The 8x magnification on this is suitable for hunting, bird-watching, and viewing distant objects but is not powerful enough to view celestial objects. 

The Midas 8×42 ED is the perfect binocular for both hobbyists and professionals alike and is a great investment at an unbeatable price.

Budget Pick | Pentax AD 8×25 WP Binocular

Budget Pick | Pentax AD 8×25 WP Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Cheap
  • Cool-looking
  • Fully multi-coated
  • Crisp and bright images

Our Verdict 

The Pentax AD 8×25 WP is a little binocular which is loved by glass-wearers due to the convenience in viewing.

It’s a surprising mix of portability and image quality that you’ll grow to love. It’s made out of durable materials and also looks pretty cool.

With 8x magnification, the Pentax AD 8×25 WP sits in the middle of the available binoculars in terms of magnification. It’s got 25 mm lens which is a fine choice considering the size and portability.

It also produces bright images with very little chromatic aberration which is nice. You wouldn’t want to use it as night-vision goggles for obvious reasons. It works well under dim conditions too, but the lenses aren’t wide enough to be as bright as other premium models with fantastic sharp images. 

The Pentax AD 8×25 WP has Porro prisms inside and the internals are fully multi-coated to prevent reflections. This allows for high light transmission that makes vivid images and faithful reproduction of colors possible.

It’s fog-proof and water-proof so you can work with it under rain or swampy conditions as well.

The Pentax AD 8×25 WP doesn’t come tripod-ready but it’s probably okay since you won’t take a tripod with you on quick adventures. It still serves the purpose of a handy binocular to view distant objects.

If you’re low on budget and just want a portable binocular you can stash in your bag or glove-compartments, the Pentax AD 8×25 WP is a great choice.

Runner Up | Carson VP 8×42 Binocular

Runner Up | Carson VP 8×42 Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Fairly priced
  • Killer value for the price
  • Very comfortable
  • Durable

Our Verdict 

The Carson VP 8×42 is a full-size binocular with an impressive field of view- up to 1000 yards.

It’s very convenient for eyeglass wearers due to the long eye relief of 17 mm. If you do not wear one, don’t worry- it’s perfect for you too! The diopter adjustment on this is also nice.

8x Magnification is pretty standard on binoculars and it gives you a good view of far objects. You also won’t have any issues with stability that you might have on some binoculars with higher magnifications.

The 42 mm lens is quite wide, and as a result, you get brighter images. Wider lenses allow more light to pass through and provide enhanced optical performance.

The Carson VP 8×42 shines as a lightweight piece of gear but it’s also useful in a wide variety of situations. You can take it for hunting, watching birds, safaris, outdoor trips as well as sports and musical events. It’s very versatile and serves its purpose as one of the best low-budget versatile binoculars.

It’s fully multi-coated on the inside and also has phase coatings that prevent reflections and provide the best brightness and optical clarity for extended periods.

The Carson VP 8×42 is one of the leading compact models in the entry range and the manageable weight is also a selling point. Add exceptional clarity of vision to that and a durable design- and you’ve got yourself a fantastic pair of binoculars in the VP 8×42.

It’s also tripod mountable but tripod adapters and tripod are not included with the product. It’s probably because it doesn’t cost much for the Carson VP 8×42 and if they included the tripod, it would spike up prices by a lot. 

The insides are Nitrogen purged which makes it fog proof and waterproof. It’s an essential feature to have even if you do not intend to use it out in the rain. You just never know when you might need to view something in a little rain.

Best Binoculars For Hunting

Our Pick | Vortex Optics Viper HD 10×42 Binocular

Our Pick | Vortex Optics Viper HD 10×42 Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Comfortable grip
  • Excellent edge quality and image sharpness
  • Affordable
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

It’s not easy to find something affordable that works for a variety of conditions while being extremely portable.

The Viper HD 10×42 is an ideal hunting binocular that you can take with you everywhere. Even if you’re not hunting, you can still use it at concerts, sports, bird-watching, and pretty much anywhere.

The 10×42 means that it’s got 10x magnification which is higher than most compact binoculars, and the 42mm objective lens is pretty wide so it allows more light to pass in. More light simply means more brightness and image clarity which is always nice.

While on the field, you may be covering long distances and dealing with high humidity and rain. The Vortex Viper 10×42 is protected by a thing rubber armor on the outside which protects it from dents and possible impact.

There are also contoured indents on the binocular for a comfortable grip. It’s very unlikely that you’ll ever drop your binoculars due to this.

The pair of binoculars is also pretty lightweight making it an ideal piece of gear to carry with you on hunts. If you prefer, you can also put it on a tripod to improve stability. 
It produces brighter images than its contenders thanks to the XR anti-reflective lens coatings on all glass-air surfaces. This means that it’s bright and clear even under low-light conditions.

If you’re a glass-wearer, you’ll find the Viper HD 10×42 very convenient to use as it’s got twist eyecups that you can easily adjust to get the desired eye relief.

Moreover, it’s also fog-proof and waterproof thanks to the O-ring seals. It also comes with a carrying case and a tough harness for easy transport.

If you’re looking for powerful binoculars for your next hunt, the Viper HD 10×42 is a great choice!

Budget Pick | Vortex Optics Diamondback HD 10×42 Binocular

Budget Pick | Vortex Optics Diamondback HD 10×42 Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Cheap
  • Great value for price
  • Excellent image clarity and resolution
  • Durable materials
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

The Diamondback HD 10×42 is one of the most affordable binoculars on the market with exceptional image quality.

Though we’ve placed it under hunting binoculars, it certainly holds its own as a birding binocular.

With 10x magnification, the Diamondback HD 10×42 is highly capable of producing very bright images with impressively high contrast. The 42 mm objective lens is wide enough for a lot of light to pass in and it also means that you get a larger viewing area under the scope.

The full-sized binocular is free from nasty chromatic aberration and provides accurate colors and fantastic light transmission thanks to fully multi-coated anti-reflective coatings.

On the outside, it’s protected from impacts and scratches by ArmorTek coating which is quite tough.

The adjustable twist eyecups provide convenient means to adjust eye relief for both eyeglass wearers and non-wearers alike.

Since the Diamondback HD 10×42 is inexpensive, it’s also a great choice as a proper binocular to gift your child without spending a lot. It’s hard to put a price on things like that, right?

The Diamondback HD 10×42 also supports a tripod which is handy when you need to get very stable views out of the binocular. Just mount it on one and you’re done!

It comes with a tough chest harness as well. You don’t have to worry about it getting wet or foggy as it’s fog-proof and waterproof. 

I’ve had my eyes on a premium binoculars for quite some time now but cannot afford the cost, so I mostly stick to budget ones and if you’re like me, you should too. If you’re in a pinch, and cannot go all out on expensive binoculars, the Diamondback HD 10×42 is pretty much the best budget alternative for you. It’s an excellent choice for a trusty binocular with premium features.

Premium Pick | Swarovski 8.5×42 EL Binocular

Premium Pick | Swarovski 8.5×42 EL Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Very light and portable
  • Excellent brightness and resolution
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

If you like high-end premium binoculars, the Swarovski 8.5×42 EL is a fantastic choice.

It’s a no-brainer that if you’re a professional who needs a reliable binocular that features color-fidelity and high-contrast and a huge array of features, you need one of the premium binoculars that can provide that.

You get what you pay for, and with a Swarovski 8.5×42, you are getting a top-of-the-line product that’s going to last for decades.

I really like this binocular as some of my friends do use it and say fantastic things about it. If I had a bit more money to spend on binoculars, I would probably get these.

It’s quite portable and fits any bag very easily. The 42mm lens brings a wide range of views to the table and it’s hard to not like it.

Having a wide lens also improves image clarity and brightness. You’d be surprised by how sharp the image can get on this, even under low-light conditions.

It’s worthwhile to have the best powerful binoculars on the market so you can focus more on the surroundings around you without being distracted by a clunky binocular with some chromatic aberration every now and then.

The Swarovski 8.5×42 also has a wrap-around grip which helps you effortlessly grip the binocular even during wet conditions. The SwaroVision technology is also at play on this and it ensures that you are getting the best optics Industry has to offer in the present.

These have the shortest focusing distance – 4.9 ft which makes it really easy for you to view insects and grasses if you feel like it.

Like most reflection-proof binoculars, it’s fully multi-coated so you always get crisp images with a wonderful field of vision.

It’s also filled with dry Nitrogen gas so that it doesn’t get corroded by water. It’s nice to know that your binoculars will stay safe even when submerged up to 13ft underwater. I personally wouldn’t want to try that but it’s good to hear that my binocular is made to last and won’t get bothered by a little humidity or rain.

If you don’t mind paying the premium cost, you will get an excellent binocular with maximum light transmission and superior image quality. It’s simply great for all sorts of activities and hundreds of reviews say that you won’t regret your decision.

Best Compact Binoculars

Our Pick | Zeiss Terra ED Binoculars

Our Pick | Zeiss Terra ED Binoculars
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Affordable
  • Excellent light transmission
  • Multi-coated optics
  • Very comfortable and easy to handle

Our Verdict 

The Zeiss Terra ED Binocular is an exceptional low-light performance gear you’ll love to take with you outdoors.

It comes in two variants of 8×42 or 10×42, which just means that the lens diameter is 42 mm and the magnification is either 8 or 10 times. The higher magnification is better for you if you need more details but the lower magnification is also optimum for most purposes.

There’s a reason why I picked them as the best compact pair of binoculars- and excellent light transmission is one of them. The Schott Ed glass used on these has multi-coated optics to avoid reflection and produces a high-contrast and crisp bright image.

Like most compact binoculars, the Zeiss Terra ED Binoculars are waterproof binoculars and do not get damaged on prolonged exposures to rain or snow. Of course, you wouldn’t want to leave them out when it’s raining but knowing that they are durable and won’t get foggy easily is a great thing.

When you’re outdoors, it’s almost inevitable that it will rain and your viewing conditions will be compromised. It’s hard to spot anything with foggy binoculars. Zeiss Terra ED Binoculars have LotuTec coating which does a great job at providing crisp views under unfavorable situations.

The focus knobs are also very easy to grip and feel intuitive. It’s one of the things that I really like about Zeiss Terra ED Binoculars. I’ve had my hands on an 8×42 and it feels very comfortable.

Nobody wants their binoculars to be bulky but that’s a price serious bird watchers and professionals need to pay in exchange for the wider field of view. The Zeiss Terra ED Binoculars are a compromise between the lens size and image brightness, and it absolutely nails that.

Budget Pick | Wingspan FieldView 8×32

Budget Pick | Wingspan FieldView 8×32
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Very cheap
  • Wide range
  • Versatile in use

Our Verdict 

Expensive binoculars are great and pack a lot of specs but also have a premium price tag on them. The Wingspan FieldView 8×32 are pretty cheap and feature a compact design.

The compact pair of binoculars work well as a go-to binocular. I do have some high-end binoculars but I find myself drawn to these most of the time.

Since these do not cost a fortune, I don’t have to worry about accidentally dropping or losing them, which doesn’t happen most of the time but knowing you can afford another pair right away is a relief. 

I use the Wingspan FieldView 8×32 for pretty much anything from spotting birds to watching sports. 

These are one of the most powerful binoculars in the price range that provide an impressive field of view. If you’ve ever watched a flock, you know just how annoying it can get to scan from one end to the other to see the entire flock.

The Wingspan FieldView 8×32 features bright images from a wide range making it convenient for you to focus on the birds. 

I know it’s hard to decide whether or not to gift your children binoculars as giving them one would also mean that they could damage it easily. It’s unintentional- sure, but you’re the one who has to pay for a new one. Going for a budget one also helps you save up costs.

The Wingspan FieldView 8×32 is great and there are no signs of poor quality in construction or performance, so you won’t be missing out on anything important either.

The grip on these is also commendable. They are convenient to hold and won’t slip out of your fingers during use.

As a budget binocular with killer looks and excellent optical performance, the Wingspan FieldView 8×32 makes a perfect piece of gear for anybody wondering.

Premium Pick | Celestron TrailSeeker ED 8×42 Binoculars

Premium Pick | Celestron TrailSeeker ED 8×42 Binoculars
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Waterproof
  • Vivid colors
  • Comfortable to hold
  • Softcover, harness, and padded neck strap included

Our Verdict 

The Celestron Trailseeker ED 8×42 is a great choice fr birding enthusiasts looking for an excellent binocular at the lowest price.

Launched in 2019, the ED 8×42 has a very modern look and feel to it. It’s great to see that they didn’t opt for a cheaper housing and decided to go for excellent optics.

Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass and being fully multi-coated means that the affordable binoculars are free from internal reflections and lend well to low-light conditions as well. 

It’s also free of chromatic aberration and produces crisp images without any weird fringes around the objects being viewed.

One of the things that I really like about this is that the central hinge is quite sturdy and once you adjust it, it won’t get loose easily- meaning the interpupillary distance won’t change soon. This is especially useful when I’m going outdoors and don’t want to be readjusting my binoculars every few minutes just because the hinge won’t stay put.

It takes just 1.5 turns to go from the lowest to the highest focus which is very convenient. It’s easy enough for me to operate it with just one finger!

The central bridge is also very durable and well-made.

It’s also very comfortable to hold. The body is covered by contoured hard rubber which may not be as impact-resistant as some soft thick rubbers out there, but it does the job well.

The Magnesium Alloy chassis holds up well and isn’t very heavy. In fact, the binocular feels very rigid despite being lightweight.

The Celestron Trailseeker ED 8×42  is also fog proof and water-resistant thanks to the Nitrogen filling on the inside.

It also comes with a soft case for easy carrying and a padded neck strap so you can comfortably view distant objects for long hours. 

The Celestron Trailseeker ED 8×42 gives the expensive binoculars a run for their money. It’s a great choice for bird watchers and anybody else who want excellent optical performance in a binocular with manageable weight. 

Best Binoculars for Astronomy and Stargazing

Our Pick | Celestron SkyMaster 25×100 Binoculars

Our Pick | Celestron SkyMaster 25×100 Binoculars
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Extremely sharp images
  • Wide lenses that help with brightness
  • 25x Magnification

Our Verdict 

The Celestron SkyMaster 25×100 Astro binoculars are ideal for you if you’re on the lookout for a quality pair of binoculars to view the night sky.

The 25×100 means that these can magnify up to 25 times what you’d see with your unaided eyes and there’s a 100 mm lens. The lens is the largest ones Celestron makes for premium binoculars.

It’s not very convenient to wear them as they are quite heavy but having a wide lens allows more light to pass in and that helps with producing sharp images.

Binoculars used in astronomy usually have very high magnification and with the added magnification, the image tends to be shaky unless you have a firm hand or place it on a tripod. An integrated photo tripod adapter is an easy fix for the necessary weight and also helps with the image stabilization feature.

You need very powerful optics if you want to see something in the skies as heavenly bodies are very far from the earth. The SkyMaster boasts an ultra-sharp focus which comes in very handy!

It’s not unsurprising that you’ll want to use your binoculars during low-light conditions as well. Dim light periods like the twilight or dusk do not allow much light to pass in through smaller binoculars. The SkyMaster features BaK-4 prisms which are great at light transmission and produce sharp images with improved optical clarity. 

The SkyMaster 25×100 also has a tough protective covering that is made to resist a variety of weather conditions. It not only helps with the water-resistant factor but also helps with the grip while handling.

Even if your compact pair of binoculars gets wet, you can just wipe it with a clean cloth and you’re done with the maintenance!

It also comes with a deluxe carrying case that makes transporting it very easy and fashionable.

It’s great for viewing celestial objects and is undoubtedly one of the best binoculars for astronomy.

Budget Pick | Nikon 8248 ACULON A211 10×50

Budget Pick | Nikon 8248 ACULON A211 10×50
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Versatile and durable if you care for it
  • Quality components
  • Great entry-level binocular

Our Verdict 

There are many premium binoculars that have very impressive features. I am not a rich guy- so personally, I tend to stick to the not-so-expensive ones and in the process, discovered some powerful binoculars that can be bought for cheap.

The Nikon 10×50 is designed as an inexpensive pair of binoculars that can still produce a sharp image. It’s decent value for the cheap price and is very lightweight- great for easy carrying.

The eco-glass lenses are multi-coated so as to avoid any reflection inside the binocular. This coating helps obtain crisp images under fair lighting conditions. It’s not supposed to work under dim poor light conditions as the lens isn’t very wide.

The lens diameter is good for most purposes and you should be fine unless you’re going to take the Nikon 10×50 for professional wildlife photography at dusks/dawns.

The Aculon A211 is, however, not water-resistant and this can be a pitfall. If you don’t want to invest a huge amount of your money on something that is resistant to water, you’ll need to care for your binocular more. 

This is something that I’ve struggled with in the past, and how I got over that is I just became more responsible since I did not want to damage my binocular every time I took them outdoors. That discipline has really helped me take care of my expensive and cheaper binoculars alike.

There’s a convenient central knob for easy adjustments and it feels quite nice as the fingers automatically fall on it.

Though it’s quite cheap, the Nikon 10×50 features a protective coating of rubber on the outside. It also allows for a good grip and you don’t have to worry about the binocular slipping from your fingers during use.

The Nikon 10×50 is a great choice for somebody who just wants to get into the exciting world of bird watching and fancy astronomy binoculars without spending a significant sum. The Nikon binocular is a wonderful choice at the lowest price. 

Premium Pick | Orion 9326 Giant View 25×100

Premium Pick | Orion 9326 Giant View 25×100
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Excellent quality
  • Bright and crisp images
  • Great value for price

Our Verdict 

If you’re looking for the brightest pair of binoculars for stargazing, the Orion 9326 25×100 features a huge lens and super high-contrast images which would be just perfect for your needs.

The 25×100 on the product name means that it makes objects far from you 25 times larger and the lens has a 100mm diameter. 100mm on a lens is a huge thing because that’s the largest diameter lenses you’ll find on astronomy binoculars.

There’s also an anti-reflective coating on the Orion 25×100 which makes images all the better without any losses in clarity or brightness. It’s got fully multi-coated optics which is pretty standard on high-end binoculars.

When it comes to paying for a piece of gear to view distant objects, authenticity matters. Orion has a variety of very dependable products trusted by thousands across the globe and the Orion 25×100 is no exception to the Orion quality.

The BaK-4 prisms inside the binoculars are also great at excellent light transmission.

The Orion 25×100 is constructed out of tough materials that are very durable. You don’t need to worry about getting your pair of binoculars damaged in the rain or foggy in high humidity.

If you wear glasses for long hours a day, you may have noticed that most binoculars feel uncomfortable when wearing glasses. There is something called eye relief which just means the distance between your eyes and the lens.

The Orion 25×100 has 18 mm eye relief which is plenty of space for your glasses without it getting in your way. 

It’s pretty heavy so you need a tripod for convenient viewing, but once you’ve got that set-up, image stabilization feature on this is really nice when focusing at high magnifications.

The Giant View binocular provides great value for the price and excels at what it’s intended for; as a piece of high-end quality equipment for a great experience.

Best Binoculars for Birding

Our Pick | Nikon MONARCH 7 8×42 Binocular

Our Pick | Nikon MONARCH 7 8×42 Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Bright and crisp images
  • Affordable
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

The Monarch 7 8×42 is a fantastic binocular that features clarity of vision, affordability, and comfort into a single package.

I am the one giving gear advice for friends, and I always suggest these for bird-watching. If you’re going to be outdoors for extended periods, you need to factor in the unpredictable factors too.

Snow, rain, accidental drops- your favorite binocular has to go through it all and still work great. The Monarch 7 has a sturdy rubber coating that is quite tough and can withstand impacts and some accidents.

The Nikon Monarch 7 has an astounding 42 mm field of view which is very useful when you need to watch a flock of birds without having to adjust to seeing every bird in the flock.

The larger lens also helps with more light entering through and that increases the brightness and edge clarity.  You may need to use your binocular under poor light conditions and it’s great to have the improved clarity of vision that comes with the Nikon Monarch 7.

The lenses and prisms are all coated with anti-reflective coatings to prevent losses in brightness and optical quality. Several layers of coatings help with faithful reproduction of vivid colors as in very high-end ones.

It’s also very comfortable to handle and the rubber coating suits its use well.

The roof prisms inside are slimmer and less bulky than the Porro prism which also helps with the sleeker design of the binocular itself. Roof prisms also correct phase and help with image clarity.

These binoculars are also waterproofed by sealed Nitrogen gas. This also helps keep the insides absolutely fog-proof.

If you’re in the market for an affordable birding binocular with a compact design, you cannot go wrong with the Nikon Monarch 7 8×42.

Budget Pick | Celestron Nature DX 8×42 Binocular

Budget Pick | Celestron Nature DX 8×42 Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Cool design
  • Quality build
  • Pretty cheap
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

The Celestron Nature 8×42 is a quality pair of binoculars with a wider field of view than most compact binoculars in the same price range. With unbeatable image quality and image stabilization features, it’s an ideal birding binocular.  

The brand Celestron is also a highly trusted name in the Optics industry, so you can be sure that you’re getting a quality product tried and tested by thousands.

Whether you choose to take it with you on outdoor adventures or just nature-watching, the Celestron Nature 8×42 can withstand a variety of weather conditions. These are waterproof and fog proof and you don’t need to worry about rain damaging your binoculars every time you go out.

The Celestron Nature 8×42 is very portable making it an excellent choice for stuffing into backpacks to take on trips. The lightweight construction also makes handling for prolonged periods very convenient.

There is also a rubber coating on the outside which acts as protection from impacts and also helps with the grip. 

If you regularly wear glasses, you’ll find the Celestron Nature 8×42 an easy piece of gear to use. It comes with twist-up eyecups that are very helpful for getting the viewing position just right. 

The insides are fully multi-coated with anti-reflective material so that there is no loss in brightness. It also features BaK-4 prisms which make for a slimmer overall design. As a result, the Celestron Nature 8×42 produces very bright images even under poor light conditions.

It also comes with a carrying case, lens covers, and straps as you’d expect from a quality binocular.

If you don’t have the budget for an expensive top-of-the-line binocular with premium features, the Celestron Nature 8×42 is pretty much the ideal birding binocular for you. Its features are on par with some of the more powerful binoculars in the market, and it’s a great choice overall.

Premium Pick | Zeiss 8×42 Conquest HD

Premium Pick | Zeiss 8×42 Conquest HD
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Comfortable to hold
  • Great value for the price
  • Affordable
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

The lightweight Zeiss 8×42 is an excellent birding binocular. 

Not only does it have a wide field of view- thanks to the 42mm lens, it also produces brighter images than most in the price range.

Zeiss says they’ve got Zeiss T* coating which is said to be a technology that differs for every lens. Either way, the binocular produces crisp images with little chromatic aberration, so it’s great to have.

The central focus knob is easy to operate and very convenient to fiddle with when viewing distant objects.  
The Conquest HD flaunts 90% light transmission which, combined with the wide lens- gives it exceptional low-light performance. With the fantastic optical performance during dim light hours, you won’t have to worry about using your binoculars in the dusk or dawn.

The compact pair of binoculars is waterproof- thanks to the Zeiss LotuTec coating. It’s also free from internal fogging as it’s filled with dry Nitrogen.

18mm eye relief so you can wear glasses and still use them conveniently.

Some buyers have said that the viewing on the Zeiss 8×42 is inconvenient. If you feel so, you can ask Zeiss for a free eye-cup that solves your problem.

The rubber coating also makes it very comfortable to hold and provides excellent grip.

It comes with a soft bag, strap, and lens covers. The accessories provided are high-quality and will help you in taking care of your precious binocular.

You can use the power binoculars for hunting or bird watching or pretty much anything suitable for the 8x magnification.

The Germany-made binocular is one of the top-scoring binoculars designed to perform well in a variety of weather conditions. The compact design also makes it quite portable and it fits in a big pocket. 

It’s great for anybody looking for an affordable easy-to-carry binocular that performs as well as premium binoculars.

Best For Kids

Our Pick | Celestron Nature DX 8×32 Binocular

Our Pick | Celestron Nature DX 8×32 Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Portable
  • Mid-size
  • Great value for the price
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

The Celestron Nature DX 8×32 binocular is the perfect pair of binoculars for casual bird-watching or hunting or taking with you on all kinds of trips. These are very well-made and produce a bright image that makes it easy to spot birds as well as to figure out distant objects.

The DX 8×32 features 8 times magnification, which just means that objects appear up to eight times larger when viewed with this binocular. The 32mm lens is a downgrade from the 42 mm lens in the 8×42, and as a result, this binocular is more portable than the more expensive variant with a 42 mm lens.

It features all the goodness of the bigger compact binoculars albeit with a somewhat reduced brightness of image which isn’t very noticeable unless you work in dimly lit conditions.

The Celestron DX 8×32 is also fully multi-coated with BaK-4 prisms which means that there is no loss of brightness due to internal reflections. That said, it’s not as bright as some binoculars with wider lenses as the wider aperture allows more light to pass in. For hobbyists and most bird enthusiasts, it’s still okay for bird-watching.  

The binocular is also waterproof and fog-resistant, and very durable.

In order to protect the binocular from impacts and unwanted scratches, it comes with a tough rubber coating which also does a good job at providing a solid grip. It’s great to know that your binocular will be easy to handle during wet conditions too.

It also comes with a quality carrying case, straps, a handy manual, and lens caps so you don’t have to worry about scratching your binoculars or damaging the lenses when not in use.

It’s mid-size and perfect for your child with small hands. If you’re thinking of getting your young one a fantastic binocular so they can go on their own little adventures, the Celestron Nature DX 8×32 makes a perfect beginner’s binocular with a solid resolution and sharp contrasts.

Budget Pick | Occer 12×25 Binocular

Budget Pick | Occer 12×25 Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Very light and portable
  • Cheap
  • Excellent brightness and resolution
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

The Occer 12×25 binocular is an affordable powerful binocular that you’ll love if you like the premium binoculars but do not have the budget to get one.

It’s wonderful that you can get a fantastic binocular like this one at such a low price as this isn’t some shitty toy thing. With the Occer 12×25, you can really get a feel for what professional binoculars are like.

It’s also pretty bright even under low light conditions, and the 25mm lens has a wide field of view. The 12x stands for magnification- this binocular makes distant objects appear 25 times larger than viewed by an unaided eye.

12x magnification is pretty high for normal use and a 25mm lens is good enough to impart high brightness. There is also BaK-4 coated prism which makes color fidelity a unique feature on this.
If you’re worried about whether the Occer 12×25 will fit your glasses, it certainly will. It has a large eye relief and if you feel like it, you can easily pull the rubber eyepieces. Doing so helps you get a clearer view through the objective lens.

Most binoculars are coated on the inside to prevent reflections and on the outside to make them waterproof as well as facilitate grip. The Occer 12×25 is covered with FMC Broadband coating and gives the objective lens a green color. 

The Occer 12×25 is pretty lightweight which makes it very easy to carry around. The compact design also helps with the style factor and if you gift one of these to your children, they’ll definitely love it.

You can find great use out of it as a birding binocular. It has nice light transmission which makes it a versatile piece of viewing gear. You can use it for concerts, outdoor trips, safaris and games without any qualms.

It also works during dim light conditions but it’s not meant to be a night-vision binocular. 

You don’t need to worry about water getting into your binocular and damaging them- as it’s waterproof.

The budget binocular also comes with a soft carrying bag and strap and fits your pocket quite easily. The portability and inexpensiveness make it a great choice as a kids’ binocular.

If you’re looking for something to get your children started with bird-watching, you’d also want the purchase to be an investment in them. The Occer 12×25 is undeniably a great choice for that!

Runner Up | Celestron Outland X 8×25 Binocular

Runner Up | Celestron Outland X 8×25 Binocular
9.4/10 Our Score

What We Like

  • Lightweight and Portable
  • Affordable
  • Excellent field of view
  • Fog-proof and water-proof

Our Verdict 

The Outland X 8×25 is a portable binocular that’s not much bigger than a smartphone. The lightweight feature-rich factor makes it a perfect binocular for beginners as well as bird enthusiasts alike.

The Outland X 8×25 stands out from other binoculars of a similar price range in stunning image quality.

The Outland X 8×25 is waterproof and fog proof which means that you don’t have to worry about humidity or rain in the slightest. It’s fit for use in a variety of weather conditions. The waterproofing is achieved by sealing the internals in dry Nitrogen gas. This practice is pretty common in high-end binoculars.

What I really like about this binocular is that it’s also very convenient to use for those of us who wear eyeglasses. There is a large central focus knob which makes slight focus adjustments very easy.

The twist-up eyecup also lets you easily change the eye relief for easier viewing. 

There is a protective rubber armoring on the binocular which I find pretty cool to have. It also helps protect the binoculars as well as improve grip.

I like my binoculars to be fully multi-coated as it improves the image clarity and brightness. The Outland X 8×25 is also multi-coated which helps reduce reflections and helps in crisp and clear images. It’s also free from nasty chromatic aberration and produces vivid colors true to reality.

The prisms used in Outland X 8×25 are made out of BaK-4 glass which helps prevent issues with color. The faithful color reproduction and lucid images are one great thing that this binocular absolutely nails.

If you’re in a pinch and need a portable binocular that’s quality without paying a huge sum, Outland X 8×25 is a great choice.

Final Thoughts

If you’re somebody who likes doing a fair amount of research, the list of quality binoculars can get very intimidating and the list can get quite long. Truth is, you don’t need the most expensive binoculars to enjoy outdoor activities.

You can just get a budget one that suits your needs and in my experience, that’s a very good place to start. If you’re a professional who uses binoculars on a regular basis, we hope you find our review very useful. Always remember to check for offers on our site before you decide on a purchase as we regularly update our site with the latest discounts and offers!

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