Whether you are a hunter, a birdwatcher, or simply into nature or spectator sports, a good pair of binoculars is essential to getting the most out of your experience. But not all binoculars are the same, and it is essential to find a pair that suits your area of interest.
Finding the right pair of binoculars can be quite difficult if you don't know what to look for. Every manufacturer out there markets their products to be the best so you can't rely on advertising alone. It is a good idea to look at the independent reviews that consumers are posting online about the various binoculars they have bought.
Since they aren't working for the manufacturer they won't be trying to persuade you; they will simply be giving their unbiased opinion of how it is working out for them.
Best Binoculars Review
1. Gosky 10x42 Binoculars
- Durable Magnalium Framework and Rubber Armor with Stripes: Its tight-fitting protection makes it usable for withstanding the most stringent weather conditions. And the rubber armor with stripes makes it comfortable for use and keeps it from slipping out from your hand.
- Waterproof, Dust-proof, and Shockproof Design: Its sealing property ensures the living waterproof function. Lifetime Warranty.
- With Carrying Case, Eyepiece and Lens Protection Covers, Cleaning Cloth and Binocular Neck Strap.
- Comes with the newest quick alignment smartphone mount. Compatible with Smartphones.
This binocular comes with a magnification of 10Xand an objective lens of 42mm. This compact roof prism binocular has a wide 307 feet of the field of view at a distance of 1000 yards. The quality of the optics is decent, coming with a fully multi-layer coating. Although you will not get outstanding quality optics at this price range, this one is really a great value product. The image quality is decent in terms of price; however, you will get blurred vision at full magnification. Also, bright daylight and low light can cause you trouble from getting a clear view.
However, the best thing about this binocular is the BAK4 prism which is excellent for providing superior optical performance. The construction of the binocular is durable with shock observing rubber armor. These products are not waterproof or fog proof, so you have to be careful with them. Lastly, Gosky 10×42 comes with some great accessories to make your life easier.
2. GPO Passion HD 10x42 Binoculars
- Fully Multi-Coated Optics with:
- 42mm Objective Lenses
- Double ED Glass Elements
- Hydrophobic Lens Coatings
- Schmidt Pechan roof prisms:
- Dielectric Coatings
- Phase Correction Coatings
- Magnesium Alloy Body
- Waterproof & Fog Protection
- Central Focus Wheel with integrated locking Diopter
- Twist-up aluminum eyecups with 17mm of Eye Relief
- Tripod Adaptable
- FOV: 336ft @ 1000 yards
- Close Focus Distance: 2m (6.5ft)
These Passion HD binoculars is one of the best from German Precision Optics, it is not only one of the top rated binoculars in 2019 but ranks up there with the very best High Definition binoculars.
The body components used by GPO and the overall build quality of this binoculars are one of the best in the industry. This includes the use of a magnesium alloy chassis and aluminium eye-piece housings to the super smooth focus wheel with its integrated diopter adjuster.
It features high-grade optical components and coatings which includes two ED glass elements within each lens and hydrophobic coatings on the exterior surfaces that ensure a better view in all conditions.
These very high specification optical components combine well to deliver an exceptional view, which is better than any instrument at this or even the higher "alpha" price level.
Its image brightness is super impressive. The quality and semi-rigid construction of the carry case and the neck strap is one of the most comfortable.
For a binocular with a 10x magnification, these GPO Passion HD 10x42 binoculars have a very wide field of view. Indeed at 336ft at 1000yds, it exactly matches that of both the Leica 10x42 Ultravid HD and the Swarovski 10x42 EL.
3. Hawke Frontier 8x42 ED X
- Single Hinge Body Design
- Magnesium Chassis
- Waterproof & Fog proof
- Twist-up Eye-cups with click stops
- Fully Multi-Coated Optics
- ED Glass Lenses
- BaK-4 Roof Prisms
- Dielectric Mirror Coatings
- Phase Corrected
- Very Wide Field of View: 426ft at 1000 yards
- Close Focus: 6.6ft
- Excellent 18mm of Eye Relief
- IPD: 5.6-7.4cm / 2.2-2.9ins
- Weight: 24.4oz / 692g
- Dimensions 14cm (5.5ins) x 12.3cm (4.8ins)
These are not only the best binoculars in 2019 but the best birdwatching Binoculars.
These binoculars offers a high-quality image, for all users, especially for birders. It brings an excellent and accurate to life image, which is a critical feature as it ensures you are not only able to marvel at the beauty of the birds in all their glory but also in birding. You will also see all the tiny differences in their feather and easily spot the difference when trying to identify one sub-species from another positively.
The Hawke Frontier ED-X with it's ED (extra-low dispersion glass) lenses and phase corrected, dielectrically coated roof prisms and many other highest level optical components ensure outstanding optical elements and final image quality sections.
As most binoculars users will know, having a wide field of view is another extremely important feature as it enables you to quickly find and then follow your subjects, this is especially true of the small faster-moving creatures.
At 426ft wide at 1,000 yards, these Hawke binoculars have an extremely wide view that ranks up there with the very most extensive 8x42 binoculars currently on the market, and that is why we would certainly describe them as being a wide angle binocular.
As well as performing exceptionally well in these critical areas for birding, another reason to choose 8x42 Hawke Frontier X over the other binoculars is that they have a very high build quality level and an excellent performance in every area. Indeed they literally have no significant weaknesses. This makes them a very versatile instrument that will not only stand out in most types of birding situations but many other areas as well.
4. Bresser 8x56 Pirsch ED
- Open Bridge Body Design
- Waterproof & Fog proof
- Metal Focus Wheel & Eyepieces
- Fully Multi-Coated Optics
- Large 56mm Objective Lenses
- ED (Extra Low Dispersion) Glass Lens Elements
- BaK-4 Roof Prisms
- Dielectric Mirror Coatings
- Phase Corrected
- Field of View: 342ft at 1000yds
- Close Focus: 11.5ft
- Long Eye Relief: 19.7mm
The Bresser Pirsch ED 8x56 Binoculars are the best wildlife binoculars. These German-made Bresser binoculars are very high-performance and make a great alternative to the standard 8x42 as they have a noticeably improved performance in low light, yet the size and weight penalty are very minimal.
Its large 56mm objective lenses act just like the windows in your house, and it’s also able to capture and potentially transmit more light in low light situations. This potential is realized with the use of a genuinely excellent and fully multi-coated optical system that includes ED glass lenses, phase corrected and dielectrically coated roof prisms.
This superior performance in a low light situation is not only necessary when the sun is just below the horizon but helps in thick forests or even on dull overcast days.
The general build quality, attention to detail and their included accessories are also well above average making this a great option for general uses including wildlife, hunting, and birding observation.
5. Steiner Nighthunter/Shadowquest 8x56
- Made in Germany
- Fixed Focus Binoculars (Always in Focus)
- Nitrogen Filled for fog proofing
- Fully Multicoated Optics:
- +96% Light Transmission
- Protective hydrophobic exterior lens coatings
- Porro PrismsPrisms
- N-BaK-4 HT glass from Schott
- Field of View: 441ft at 1000yds
Steiner Nighthunter 8x56 Binoculars is also called the Shadowquest in the USA, the large 56mm Steiner Nighthunter binoculars are specifically designed for hunters and specifically those who require the brightest views, even in very low light conditions. However, they can be just as useful for anyone needing an instrument that excels in very low light conditions.
Manufactured in Germany, using the very best optical components and coatings, Steiner Optics have managed to produce an instrument that has an industry leading light transmission level of more than 96% across all visible wavelengths. This extremely high light transmission level combined with their large 56mm lenses that can collect more light than smaller ones can produce a low light performance that is off the charts. However, along with this, the general image quality is excellent and as good as you could ever hope for.
The Nighthunter/Shadowquest incorporates a fixed focus (Always in Focus) optical system which means that once you have set up the instrument to match your particular vision using the dual diopters, no further focal adjustments are necessary from their minimum focal distance all the way to infinity. This means that you can more easily use this instrument with just one hand (important for hunters carrying a weapon) and thus lock onto your subject that much easier and faster.
As with the birding binoculars above, a wide field of view is often of great importance to the hunter and general wildlife observer. This is because it makes it easier to scan wide open areas and then at closer ranges it makes it much easier to locate and then follow fast moving targets quickly.
For hunters who need to carry other equipment like a rifle or bow, the ability to easily attach your instrument to a bino harness for hunting is often of great importance. The good news is that like the lens covers; the neck strap has Steiner's excellent Click-Lock quick-release system making them a cinch to remove and quickly fit onto your harness. Other unique features include the eyecups with included side shields that are extremely effective in blocking out light and distractions from the periphery of your view.
6. Snypex Knight D-ED 10x32
- Open Bridge Chassis Design
- Fiberglass Reinforced
- Fog & Waterproof
- Dimensions: 4.25in (10.8cm) x 4.64in (11.8cm)
- Weight 13.4ozs (380g)
- Fully Multi-Coated Optics
- 32mm APO Objective Lenses
- ED Glass Elements
- Phase Corrected Roof Prisms
- Dielectric Coated
- Field of View: 288 @ 1000yds
- Close Focus: 3.9ft
- 17.5mm of Eye-relief
Snypex Knight D-ED 10x32 Binoculars is the binoculars for Safari and Travel. After the less 8x powerful sibling, these Snypex binoculars are genuinely one of the best mid-sized instruments. If looking for a high-performance device for safaris and most other travel adventures, this is the binoculars to go for.
The high-quality optical components and features that include the use of Apochromatic Lenses with ED glass elements, as well as phase corrected Schmidt Pechan roof prisms with the very best dielectric mirror coatings. Make no mistake the Knight D-ED really is a match for the "alpha" brands out there, yet are available at a fraction of the cost.
Other highlights for these binoculars are the fantastic level of accessories that they are supplied with and the many small attention to details that Snypex show. This includes things like an all aluminium focus wheel, ratchet diopter adjuster and more:
Whether you are experienced or a novice in binoculars, you need a good pair of binoculars. The best binoculars should offer the following factors:
1) Adequate Magnification
When choosing your bird watching binoculars, it's essential to get the right magnification for you. Remember, when you increase magnification, you also increase the amount of jiggle in the image. You'll want at least seven or eight power birding binoculars to see and identify the species you are observing. Less than that and you'll have difficulty picking out small details from far away. The most power you'll want is about 10 to 12.
More than that and you will have real difficulty in holding them still. If you do want more power, consider a pair of stabilizing binoculars for birding. This technology will help you see more detail from farther away and will control the jiggle.
2) The sharpness of the image
One of the things that sets a great pair of birding binoculars apart from a standard pair is the sharpness of the image. Sharpness is determined by the quality of the lenses and the coatings used on them. The best binoculars will have multi-coated lenses. It costs more to grind lenses with greater precision, so expect to pay more for the best but the results will be well worth the price.
Looking at a bird through a cheap pair of binoculars and looking at it through a good pair of birding binoculars is like night and day.
You're going to be toting your binoculars through nature. After all, that's where the birds are. Don't be alarmed if your birding binoculars get banged against a fence post or a tree. This could cause cheap or poorly made binoculars to get out of alignment. This is very annoying as it will result in double images. Just as bad, if the tubes aren't appropriately sealed they can allow moisture inside and fog up or even get moldy. Some of the best birding binoculars are sealed with o-rings and filled with nitrogen gas.
There are two types of prisms, Porro and roof. Good quality roof prisms are not cheap which is why you should look at binoculars that have Porro prisms. BAK-4 prisms are the best and produce the most precise images. BK-7 prisms are used in lower priced binoculars
5) Lens Coatings
Quality binoculars often have antireflection coatings on their lenses. These coatings help enhance light transmission. These coatings also help to protect the lenses from scratches as well
6) Pricing Justification
Price is always a significant factor when you are planning to buy something. In this case, decide on the budget before you actually buy a product. Several factors play crucial roles in determining the budget of a binocular. Lens and coating, glass lenses, magnifications, etc. are some of the features that determine the price of a binocular. For instance, if you are opting for one with plastic lenses, instead of glass, it will cost you less. The design and build of the binoculars will also affect its price. If you are opting for one which is shockproof, rugged and is to be used in rugged conditions, then it will cost more.
Before you decide how to choose binoculars you need to consider the solutions for differing environments. Single scopes or spotting scopes, for example, are often used for hunting and bird watching. Here, since they are, in effect, half the size of a regular pair of field glasses, better quality optics can be afforded, as the cost will be proportionally lower.
Q1. How much do you want to spend?
The thing you want to ask yourself first and foremost is how much of a budget you have. A pair of binoculars can be extremely cheap, or they can be exorbitantly expensive. Whether you get the best binoculars out there or a budget pair, depends on your needs, and your budget.
Q2. What do the numbers mean?
When you’re shopping for binoculars, you’ll always find a set of numbers, such as 8×25 or 10×50. This is a significant factor when shopping, as both numbers in a set are extremely important. The first one indicates the magnification power, while the second one indicates the objective lens diameter.
Q3. Is buying used binoculars a good idea?
Binocular owners, as well as amateur birdwatchers, tend to sell their binoculars if they find it necessary to buy another one with a higher magnification or power. If the used binoculars are not too old and you think you are getting it for a low price, you could give the idea a try.
Take along someone who knows about binoculars to inspect the used binoculars. This way you will know if the seller is cheating you and if you are getting value for the money you are paying. Otherwise, it is not always an excellent idea to buy used binoculars. You may not really know if they carry any broken or damaged parts.
Binoculars are frequently used gadgets, whether you are planning a hike in the mountains or going on a safari these gadgets are extremely helpful in viewing objects closely with a clear view. Now that you have a good understanding of the components that make up binoculars and a review of the best binoculars you can make an educated decision on how to choose binoculars for yourself or as a gift.
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In fact, go for the one that suits you best or end up buying many pairs and spending even more money in the long run.