Best Binoculars for Hunting

Hunting Binoculars Reviews

The right pair of hunting binoculars is just as important as the scope of your rifle. If you have ever spent hours trying to view an area with standard binoculars you know that your arms and shoulders can get really stiff and tired. Choosing the right pair of binoculars and having the right accessories can make a big difference in how much enjoyment you get from them.

There are many different types and models of binoculars on the market today. Below we have featured 10 of the top rated hunting binoculars on the market that are popular with beginning and seasoned hunters. Each one has features that make it suitable for hunting. This guide will help you sort through all of the choices and select the pair that is just right for you.

Best Binoculars for Hunting

Vortex

5/5 Product Rating
Vortex Optics Diamondback Binoculars are the perfect choice for hunters. With a 10x magnification and 50mm objective lens, you will enjoy incredible image quality and sharpness that will add a whole new element to hunting. The fully multicoated lenses are responsible for transmitting more light and providing users with brighter images that are crystal clear. The field of view is one of the largest in this line and helps you identify your target quickly so you don’t miss anything. The rubber armored, sleek design with convenient thumb indents provides plenty of room for your hands which allows for a secure, anti-slip grip even in extreme weather conditions.

The adjustable eye relief is perfect for eyeglass wearers as well and can be adjusted by moving the multi-position, twist-up eyecups. There is a right eye diopter that adjusts to the focal differences in the user’s eyes. These binoculars are Argon purged and have a durable rubber armor that makes them fog proof and waterproof in wet conditions and humid conditions as well. If you’re looking for excellent hunting binoculars you will have to look no further than these Vortex Optics Diamondback Binoculars. Along with your purchase, you get tethered objective lens covers, a molded deluxe case for convenient carrying, a rain guard eyepiece cover, and comfortable neck strap.

Best Binoculars for Hunting Deer

Nikon

4.8/5 Product Rating
Nikon is a well-respected brand in the binocular industry and these Laser force rangefinder binoculars show why they have earned such a great reputation. These range finder binoculars have a range from 10 yards to 1900 yards. They combine Nikon’s exceptional binocular performance with the super-fast speed and technology of a laser range finder, providing users with 10x magnification and a 42mm objective lens.

These binoculars are fog proof, waterproof and feature incline and decline technology. The red OLED display has a 4-step intensity adjustment that is easy to read. The turn and slide eyecups make viewing comfortable and work for eyeglass wearers too. Other features include extra-low dispersion glass and Nikon’s ID technology that will compensate for any declining or inclining angles. The auto shutoff feature saves your battery and will shut the binoculars down automatically after 8 seconds of non-use. .Using these binoculars will allow optical performance, rugged durability, and ranging precision for the user to enhance the hunting experience.

Best Budget Hunting Binoculars with Rangefinder

Celestron

4.4/5 Product Rating
Celestrons’s Calvary Series is specially designed for outdoorsmen like hunters, military, policemen, and boaters. Features of these great binoculars include BAK-4 prisms that increase the contrast and resolution of the images to create more detail and sharpness, fully multi-coated optics that provide increased light through the optics for brighter viewing, and many other great features. These 7x magnification binoculars have a 50mm objective lens which makes them good for low light conditions as well. Since you will be outdoors in all types of weather, you will appreciate the fog proof and waterproof capabilities that protect your binoculars during extreme weather conditions.

The housing of these binoculars is made from rubber armor that is durable and long lasting and protects them from heavy use. It also makes them easier to hold onto without fear of dropping them. The olive green color is perfect for concealing them in the woods while on your hunting trips. These great hunting binoculars feature a digital compass, integrated GPS, and reticle that help you determine what direction your subjects are in relation to where you are and also allow you to figure out the distance and size too.

Best Roof Prism Hunting Binoculars

Bushnell

5/5 Product Rating
Bushnell is one of the most well-known and respected names in binoculars. These Bushnell Legend Ultra HD binoculars are just one great example of the quality products this reliable company creates. The Legend binoculars are lightweight and easy to handle and include features like 10x magnification, 42mm objective lens, ultra wide band coatings, high-quality optics with ED prime glass, and much more.

The soft touch grips make holding onto the binoculars easy in all kinds of weather. You won’t have to worry about extreme weather conditions because these binoculars are fog proof and waterproof and also have a rain guard HD lens coating that is water repellant for additional weather protection.
The ultra-wide field of view has a locking diopter and long eye relief making them work for eyeglass wearers. The ED glass provides true to life color and sharp, high-definition viewing that will make finding your target easy and enjoyable. Bushnell’s Legend binoculars come with a neck strap for convenient carrying and a soft case to carry them in.

Best Lightweight Hunting Binoculars

Minox

4.8/5 Product Rating
The high grade sport optics that these Minox 10×43 binoculars have provide users with exceptional performance in every area. These German made binoculars feature a lightweight body made of magnesium, high light transmission, and have been given top marks for contrast and brightness so your images are sharp and crystal clear.

These Minox 10×43 binoculars are made using the best materials for performance, accuracy, and reliability even in tough weather conditions such as hiking, camping, and other outdoor activities. The 10x magnification allows viewers to see objects that appear to be 10 times closer than they actually are. The 43mm objective lens allows in plenty of light for crisp detail and sharpness and can be used in low light conditions as well.

Best Hunting Binoculars under $100

Gosky

4.6/5 Product Rating
Looking for a great pair of quality binoculars for under $100? These Gosky 10×42 binoculars may be just what you’re looking for. The 10x magnification and large field of view are designed for many outdoor activities including watching wildlife, bird watching, hiking, watching stage plays or concerts, sporting events, and much more.

The 42mm green film objective lens feature fully multi-layered coatings that reduce and eliminate glare and provide you with crisp, bright images that will take your viewing to a new level. The rubber armor creates a durable framework that is shockproof and keeps your binoculars safe even during tough weather conditions. One of the popular features of these binoculars is the quick alignment mount for your smartphone that is compatible with a large variety of models including iPhones, Samsung GALAXY, Sony, and more. Included with your purchase are lens protection covers, a convenient neck strap, and a cleaning cloth for keeping your lenses clean.

Best Compact Hunting Binoculars for the Money

Nikon

5/5 Product Rating
Taking binoculars on a hunting trip can be cumbersome if they are heavy and bulky. Some people want to find something that will fit into their pack or pocket. These Nikon Trailblazer hunting binoculars are perfect for hunters who want something lightweight and easy to carry.

The 10x magnification is powerful and makes objects appear 10 times closer than they actually are. The 25mm objective lens and angular field of view is perfect for sighting your targets.
Wear eyeglasses? Not a problem with the Nikon Trailblazer binoculars. The long eye relief makes them comfortable to use even if you keep your glasses on while viewing. These compact binoculars are rugged and long lasting and feature fog proof and waterproof capabilities. They are made with eco-glass prisms and lenses and feature a lifetime full warranty. You can get all of these features and crisp, bright images for a great price too.

Best Thermal Binoculars for Hunting

ATN

4.8/5 Product Rating
If you are hunting in areas where there is a lot of fog or the brush is full and thick, these thermal binoculars from ATN BinoX are just what you need. You will be able to see in any type of light during the day or night with no problem. The thermal technology allows users to see through even the thickest brush and track lingering heat from recent animal prints. Do you love hunting in the mountains where there is no ambient light? The ATN BinoX thermal binoculars are the answer.

The thermal sensor features 640×480 high definition resolution for awesome performance and allows users to clearly see their targets through smoke, fog and total darkness with no problem. Other features of these terrific binoculars include a smart rangefinder that will help you measure the distance from your target to where you are, an E-compass and 3d gyroscope that eliminates blurry vision and keeps you on track and exploring without getting lost. The E-zoom feature provides magnification of your target while also keeping what is in your field of view. In addition, you can download and share video and pictures of your hunting excursions with your friends’ thanks to the 1080 HD video recording capability.

Best Budget Hunting Night Vision Binoculars

Solomark

4.4/5 Product Rating
Sometimes people don’t have a lot of money to purchase high quality binoculars but with the Solomark Night Vision monocular you can have excellent night vision while staying within your budget. This unique gadget enables users to view their desired target in total darkness. This is the perfect instrument for exploring caves, observing wildlife at night, and even surveillance.

Other features include multi-coated glass objective lenses, integrated LCD screen in full color, and a high sensitivity sensor. This monocular can be easily mounted on a tripod and is small and convenient enough to be linked to a binocular harness or put into your pack or bag. Zoom in on your targets with the zoom control that allows users to vary the size of their image by several degrees including 1x, 1.3-1.6x and 2x. The lightweight and compact size makes them popular for hikers and backpackers.

Best Binocular Harness for Hunting

Horn

5/5 Product Rating
Don’t worry about having to cart your binoculars around anymore when you have this Horn Hunter Binocular Hub. This harness provides convenient carrying of your binoculars while eliminating the discomfort and pain that neck straps can cause. The design of this harness moves the load to your shoulders rather than your neck and makes carrying your binoculars much more enjoyable.

The binocular compartment is made from molded foam that protects the binoculars from bumps and hits. The flap top makes it easy to retrieve your binoculars when you want to use them. There is also a magnetic rangefinder holder with a pouch and a side stretchy pouch for wind detectors. The removable strap is made of neoprene that can be used without the compartment if desired. The elastic cord will keep your rangefinder secured. This harness comes in two sizes and will fit binoculars 8×42-10×42 for the standard harness and 10×42 – 12×50 for the large.

Best Floating Hunting Binoculars

Hooway

4.8/5 Product Rating
Looking for great binoculars that can be used for marine activities? These Hooway 7×50 waterproof binoculars have floating capability. The 7x magnification and 50mm objective lens with 22mm eye relief provides users with beautiful images that appear to be 7 times closer than they are. The objective lens size lets in plenty of light for low light viewing as well.

The porro prism system and wide field of view produce bright images that will thrill even the seasoned binocular user. Use these binoculars in any weather thanks to the completely waterproof capability. They are nitrogen purged and will float on the water if they are even dropped. These durable, long lasting binoculars are comfortable to hold and will withstand heavy use. The non-slip armor is made from rubber that absorbs shocks and jars and provides users with a sturdy grip even in rainy weather. There is a tripod adapter fitting so you can attach it to your tripod for hands-free viewing.

Best Hunting Binoculars with Image Stabilization

Canon

4.4/5 Product Rating
The Canon 12×36 image stabilizing binoculars are ideal for hunting, bird watching and many more outdoor activities. They are compact and lightweight and can be carried easily in your bag. Sometimes people have a hard time keeping their hands stable when viewing objects through the binoculars. These binoculars take care of that and provide exceptional image stabilization.

The high 12x magnification makes objects appear 12 times closer than they actually are. Your images will be sharp and crystal clear as well as free from distortion from one edge to another. The porro prisms minimize any loss of light keeping your images bright. The long eye relief makes these a perfect choice for those who wear glasses and the improved battery consumption is improved for more in use time and less charging time. Other great features include a center focus for one-handed operation, water resistance, non-slip coating made of rubber and the extra bright field of view.

Best Binocular Rest

BOGgear

4.4/5 Product Rating
BOG-POD offers a binocular rest that allows you to easily use any brand of binocular on a tripod, bipod, or monopod. THeir patented rubber strap secures binoculars to the base of a tripod allowing for hands free use. These are great when used with the BOG-POD Professional Camera Adapter.

The binocular rest is made of lightweight and high-strength ABS plastic, fitted with a heavy-duty rubber strap. They fit any brand of binoculars ranging in size from 7x to 20x. Moreover, they work with any tripod, bipod, or monopod that has a mounting bolt.

Hunting Binoculars Buying Guide


There are several things you want to keep in mind when you are searching for the right hunting binoculars. Keep in mind the time of day you will be using them, the kind of terrain you will be dealing with, weather conditions, the region you are in and other factors. Below we have listed out the important specs and factors that make up a high-quality pair of hunting binoculars.

Magnification

When it comes to hinting binoculars bigger is not always going to be better. For most types of hunting, all you will need for magnification is somewhere between 7x and 10x. Remember that the higher the magnification is the steadier the binoculars need to be to produce a clear image.

Most people don’t want to have to worry about steadying a high magnification pair of binoculars after they have been hiking for a long time. The most popular sizes for hunters are either the 8×42 or 10×42.
They typically combine good light capability and power, making them good for low light hunting as well. If you’re normally hunting in the woods where you have limited visibility, the 8×42 binoculars will be a very good choice and will be lighter to carry as well.

If you do a lot of open field hunting and have steady hands the 10×42 binoculars will be a good choice. They are heavier though, so keep that in mind as your hands and arms could get tired. For high magnifications, consider a monopod or a harness to help lighten the load.

The rule of thumb is as follows for the 8x and 10x magnification binoculars:

  • 8x – has a wider field of view and collect more light to produce brighter images. They are also usually lighter and more compact.
  • 10x – Your view of your target will be much closer but you will sacrifice your field of view, brightness, and steadiness to some extent.
  • Field of View

    You may see field of view represented by FOV at 1000 yards. The field of view is the area that will be visible using your binoculars from 1000 yards away.

      Small FOV means that the area you’ll be able to view will be narrow.

      The higher the FOV number is the wider the field of view will be. There is no real “rule” that states what the right field of view is. If you do a lot of open range viewing you may benefit more from a wider point of view.

      The wider POV is great for catching fast-moving game but otherwise, it is not really necessary. For most hunting excursions standard POV will be more than fine.

    Optical Coatings

    Optical coatings are added to the glass surfaces of the objective lenses to reduce or completely eliminate reflected light. Binoculars with optical coatings usually don’t have issues with glare of loss of light.

    If you get a pair of binoculars that don’t have coatings you will notice a distinct and not so good difference. The higher quality the optical coatings are the clearer and brighter your images will be.

    Pay attention to the phrasing that is used to describe the optical coatings the binoculars you are interested in has. You want to choose fully multi-coated lenses which mean that all the air-to-glass surfaces are coated with several layers of anti-reflective coating. You will notice that you will get more light from higher quality coatings.

    Exit Pupil

    Two of the factors that determine the exit pupil’s size are the objective size and the magnification. The role of the exit pupil is to allow light to come in and get to the eye. The formula for determining the exit pupil is dividing the size of the objective lenses by the magnification number.

    The higher the exit pupil number is the more light that will be able to see. Most binoculars gauge the exit pupil with the human pupil. Younger viewers have a pupil that can dilate up to 7mm. For older viewers, this number goes down to about 4mm. Look for hunting binoculars that have an exit pupil that is at least the same size as your pupil or larger.

    Objective Size

    The second number that you see when it comes to binoculars is the objective lens size. For hunters, you want to look for an objective lens of 40mm to 42mm. This usually works well with almost any kind of hunting.

    The larger the objective number is the more detailed the images will be. Keep in mind that larger objectives usually come with a higher price tag but they are great for night hunting so hunters may find the extra cost is worth it. An objective size of 40mm is good for daylight hours.

    The larger your objective lens is the heavier it will be. If portability is important to you, look for objective lenses around 32mm but keep in mind that it will limit your detail. Anything lower than 30mm is not recommended especially for low light conditions. Most people do not want to give up precision for size and end up going with the recommended 40mm size or larger.

    Focus

    Binoculars either have separate eyepiece focus or center focus depending on the type of focus they have. If you are viewing medium and long distances separate focus binoculars where each eyepiece operates individually to provide the user with excellent work.

    Individual eyepiece focus binoculars are easier to waterproof and do not have any parts that are external so they tend to be a lot more durable and long-lasting. This makes them very popular with many different types of users including the military.

    Center focus binoculars are best suited to viewing game that is closer to you than 30 yards. Although the majority of binoculars have a center focus system, you may want to try a pair with the individual focus system, especially if you will be doing a lot of long range hunting.

    Eye Relief

    If you wear eyeglasses regularly or like to wear sunglasses when you are out in the sun, eye relief is a very important factor to consider. Eye relief is the distance that the user holds the binoculars from their eyes while still seeing the entire image. If you are an eyeglass wearer you will want to look for binoculars that have eye relief of 14mm to 15mm. Poor eye relief will cause a limited field of view that will take away from the viewing experience.

    Image Quality

    If you will be using your binoculars for hours at a time, image quality is something you will want to make a top priority. If you are only going to be using them on a rare occasion, image quality will not matter so much. Frequency of use is definitely an important thing to consider when choosing a pair of binoculars. The more you will be using them the higher quality binoculars you should get.

    You can get an excellent pair of binoculars with great optics for less than $150 but you will not want to go below $100 or you could sacrifice image quality. Poor imagery makes viewing less enjoyable and also affects your ability to detect detail and make necessary identifications.

    Prisms

    There are two types of prisms used in binoculars: roof and porro. Roof prisms are a little bit more user-friendly than porro prisms and are more lightweight and compact. The main drawback to a roof prism is that it is a lot more expensive than the porro prism models.

    Porro prism binoculars are a lot larger in body so they can reflect the light properly. The drawback to the porro prism is that it is not lined up with the eyepiece. There are some arguments among binocular users as to which is better; porro or roof since there are so many different factors involved such as the design of the binoculars, the quality of the glass, and the tolerances made during manufacturing.

    Weight and Size

    A good pair of full-sized binoculars can weigh as much as 2 pounds or more which can be quite cumbersome and heavy-feeling when you are on a long hike. When it comes to determining the weight of the product the type of glass used and the amount of glass the binoculars contain are factors that are taken into consideration.

    If you plan on trying to carry binoculars with you on a long hike that are large and heavy, you will find that the hike is much harder and uncomfortable. Many people love the compact binoculars on the market today because although they give up size, the newer models contain all the great feature that binoculars need.

    These compact sizes are easy to carry on trips, hikes, boating trips and many more places without adding undue weight to your pack or neck. If you do your viewing from one place all the time, you can afford to deal with the extra weight of a full-sized pair of binoculars and can opt to get a tripod for hands-free viewing.

    Rubber Coatings/Waterproof/Fog proof

    Most binoculars on the market have a durable rubber armor that encases them. This rubber casing has several benefits. First of all, the rubber helps to protect the binoculars from bumps and falls. Secondly, it provides a more secure grip for the user, especially in wet conditions when your hands can be slippery.

    One of the most important features to look for in your hunting binoculars is waterproof capability. Fog proof is a close runner-up as both water and fog negatively affect your images and can cause the lenses to fog. Waterproof binoculars are resistant to dust, grime, dirt and extreme weather conditions which make them last longer than models that do not have waterproofness.

    Eyecups

    Eyecups affect several aspects of your binoculars including image quality, comfort, eye relief, and field of view. They are an important part of a high-quality pair of binoculars so make sure that the eyecups have the features you want such as rubber coatings for increased comfort and twist up adjustability which is much better and longer lasting than fold up designs.

    Cost

    The cost of a pair of binoculars can vary from the very inexpensive, cheaply made models to the super high quality, expensive designs. The good news is this large variety of prices allows people with many different budgets to get a quality pair of binoculars. You definitely get what you pay for so keep that in mind when you set your budget.

    In general, you can expect the more expensive models to have higher quality glass, better and more coatings on the objective lenses, better image quality, and overall just better everything.
    This doesn’t mean that you have to choose the most expensive pair you can find, but you should think about the features you want, the amount of time you will be using the binoculars, the terrain and weather conditions you will be using them, and who will be using them and then choose accordingly.

    While everyone wants to get their money’s worth, looking for the cheapest model will only leave you disappointed and with a potentially weak pair of binoculars that will break after a few uses.

    Upgrading

    If you have been using a standard pair of binoculars for your hunting trips for a while you may want to consider upgrading to a pair of hunting binoculars. Not only will you experience better images, easier focusing, and more detail, it will take your hunting to a whole new level of enjoyment.

    You will be able to take advantage of the increased power, magnification, and other special features that hunting binoculars offer. Any one of the 10 binoculars we have listed above make the perfect upgrade to the standard binoculars you have been using.

    Binocular Accessories

    There are several different types of accessories that you can get to go with your hunting binoculars that make them easier to use, carry, and enjoy. Some of the more popular accessories include:

  • Tripod
  • Tripod adapter
  • Neck strap
  • Carrying case
  • Binocular Harness
  • How to Use Hunting Binoculars

    Once you have decided on the best hunting binoculars, you’ll need some advice on glassing your hunt. Please check out the short invormational video below on how to use hunting binoculars:

    Conclusion

    It takes time to find the perfect pair of hunting binoculars and some research as well. This guide was written to help make the whole purchasing process easier. Our ten top rated hunting binocular choices that have been reviewed above are a great starting point for your research.

    Once you have determined your specific, personal needs and preferences (this should be your first step) you will have a good list of features to look for as you begin researching and sorting through the different styles and models.

    Along with the ten top-rated binoculars, we have provided all of the features that make up a great pair of hunting binoculars. Details like objective lens size, magnification, eye relief and others that we have listed are all what make up a great pair of binoculars.

    Don’t forget to factor in durability and shock protection so your hunting binoculars can be used in any type of terrain and weather. With patience and persistence, you will find the perfect pair of hunting binoculars that meet all of your requirements. The right binoculars will take your hunting trips to a whole new level of excitement and adventure.

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