Best Hunting Binocular Reviews
When talking about hunting, few important things come to a mind: passion for hunting, patience and laser-like precision. The importance of good hunting binoculars is undeniable, as good hunters are not only those who are quick to respond to a situation, but those who can spot the target and keep the focus. In other words, a good pair of these might come more than handy.
For those who are just discovering their passion for hunting, and for those who already see hunting as their area of expertise, understanding the importance of top-quality equipment is certainly a must. Hunting binoculars are no excuse, and there are few things which make good binoculars good as they are.Fantastic image quality, anti-reflective optical coating, as well as reasonable size and weight, are just some of these qualities, and scrolling down the reviews presented to you, we will explain what makes each binocular effective, point out flaws in design, and go through some important details for each of the selected hunting binoculars we chose are the best available on the market.
1. Barska WP 10x42mm Air View Open-Bridge Roof Prism Binoculars
A well-respected brand, such as Barska, launched an interesting pair of Air Viewwaterproof and fog-proof binoculars with 10x magnification capability that might catch your eye. The true asset of this model objective diameter of impressive 42mm. For hunters, this means a lot, as binoculars featuring 40mm objective diameter lenses or higher are considered to be the top-shelf. Besides precision and detailed image, which is especially important when hunting at night, Barska made sure this model provides more light and clearer image, thanks, to fully-multicoated, anti-reflective lenses, which provide much better image than binoculars with multi-coated lenses, and this speaks words. This model’s magnification power of 10x is the desired optimum for hunting and birdwatching, as it provides both good image quality and steadiness, a model with higher magnification probably won’t be able to offer. One flaw of this model we could point out would be not so good eye-relief, comparing to similar models in the same price range, but nonetheless, for serious hunters, this one makes a good investment.
2. Bushnell Legend L-series 10x42mm Binoculars (Black and RealtreeXtra)
Another great model on this list is Bushnell Legend model from L-series. Bushnell created something for hunters which combines both good quality and reasonable price. We are talking about 23,5 oz in weight and 5.5’’ in size binocular model which, thanks to coating, works well in all weather conditions. Its best asset is an amazingly wide field of view, and the number we are talking about is 340 feet, which is combined with 10x magnification and clear image. What makes the model so interesting is the special feature, ED prime glass which is a high definition glass, responsible for reducing chromatic aberration, which is why this binocular from L-series gives surprisingly color-true images at any distance. The model isn’t flawless, and loose eyecups, coming off the metal housing, as well as loose lens cups, are something to take into consideration. Regardless, 340 feet field of view and high definition glass for a reasonable price is a pretty good deal.
3. Vortex Optics 15×56 Vulture HD Binoculars
With 15x magnification and 56mm objective diameter, Vortex Vulture is a real beast among binoculars. Vortex surprised customers this season with affordable HD binoculars, as it is known this is one of the expensive hunting equipment brands out there. Although the field of view could be more than 220 feet, this is a fully coated and made of high-quality glass model, what gives an explanation for its weight of 46.6 ounces, making it heavier than other models which have modern roof prism design. What we have here is a superior binocular model, featuring phase correction coatings, Dialectic prism coatings, and supreme clarity, providing a high definition experience in any hunting conditions, including humid environments, thanks to waterproof and for-proof coatings of the highest quality. While other models with 56 mm objective might not give the best performance, Vortex made sure this is not the case here, thanks to the top-quality glass. Ultimately, Vortex Vulture belongs to Low Light Legends and is especially useful in low light conditions having a rather high twilight factor of 29. Hunters who go for this model might want to use a tripod, as there is no image stabilizing without one. The model comes with a lifetime warranty.
4. Leupold BX-2 Cascades (Sunergy Built) 10x42mm Binoculars
If you are looking for a model which works extremely well in low light conditions, Leupold BX-2 Cascades is the right choice for you. What this premium binocular model offers, besides aesthetic appeal and fine design, is higher magnification, wider field of viewof267 feet and 16mm eye relief, supporting your vision in almost any conditions, including open plains, as it enables 10x magnification. It is one of those models which can be easily adjusted, because of twist eyecups. It is made of top-quality glass and has an adaptable tripod, and just like other premium models out there, it is fully waterproof and fog-proof. To sum it up, besides clear and detailed image, higher-magnification and maximum light transmission, this model also makes a great fit to any user, as its designers did not put the emphasis on effectiveness only, but on comfort as well.
5. Celestron 10×50 LandScoutPorro Prism Binocular (Model 71362)
6. Nikon LaserForce 10×42 Rangefinder Binocular
We were saving the best for the end. Featuring multi-coated optics with ED glass for better resolution and image quality for which Nikon is famous for, LED display which adjusts to four different light conditions and 10x magnification capability, Nikon LaserForceRrangefinder has a lot to offer. Probably its best asset is extreme long ranging distance, and we are talking here about impressive 1,900 yards. Nikon didn’t leave it on just that, as for such a ranging distance needs ID technology, which helps compensate distances at different angles, and this model has it all. It is suitable both for shooting and bow-hunting, but even though 1,900 is much more than a hunter can hope for, we have to point out that even with this superpower, this hero can’t spot a deer at such distance. Ranging, because of target acquisition, will not always show its full potential, which is reasonable. If your binocular gets damaged, Nikon will take care of it or replace it for free, so even the price of this LaserForce rangefinder is not naïve, Replacement Policy sure makes up to it, as this will be a lifelong investment any serious hunter might consider.
When choosing the right binocular model there is no universal rule such as one size fits all, and not every model will be the perfect model for everyone. All of them top rated, six respected brands presented six different binocular models, and all have qualities to think about. What they all have in common is 10x or above magnification power, which is more than enough for any serious hunter, as anything above 15 is considered to be of less help when hunting. All the models are worth the price and all are waterproof and fog-proof.Finding the best among the best depends on hunting conditions and first of all priorities of every hunter individually. The good news is that most of these models come at a reasonable price, considering specifications and quality as these are all superior binocular models.
While Porro prism models are heavier than modern roor prism ones, the objective diameter is nowhere below 42mm, so you can’t really miss with any of these models. The best solutions for low-light conditions and those who prefer hunting at night are certainly CelestronLandScout, as it fog-proof, provides brighter images and has excellent light gathering capabilities, and Vortex Vulture, which has a high twilight factor. Barska Air View model gives more steadiness than other models, which might not function well without a tripod, and is perfect for birdwatching and steady wildlife observation. Nikon LaserForce is ideal for deer-hunting and any hunting situations where long ranging distance plays an important role.Leupold BX-2 Cascades Binocular functions really well in open plains, and if you are looking for a high definition Vortex Vulture is the model for you.
What you need to know when buying binoculars?
Since the purchase of hunting equipment must be carefully thought out, as the better choice we make, the better our hunting experiences will be. No one wants to buy the same type of hunting gear over and over again, which is why any gear you buy should be a wise investment. Binoculars are no different. Before choosing a model, it is important to get knowledgeable about few important things we are about to share with you in order to assist you in the process of finding the best hunting binoculars.
One of the parts that certainly don’t get enough attention among factors buyers consider when buying binoculars is eyecups. What makes eyecups so important, besides the most obvious factor, which is comfort, is the fact that these are connected with some other important factors, such as achieving the perfect eye-relief, for hunters who do and don’t wear glasses, the field of view and image quality. What we see in today’s modern roof prism models are eyecups which slide in and out, as well as twist-up eyecups. In the second case, every user can adjust the eyecups by choosing just the right amount of eyecup extension, avoiding any discomfort. These are made of plastic or metal and covered with rubber, for maximum possible comfort.
2. Eye Relief
What is actually eye-relief and why is it important when buying binoculars? Learning about eye-relief is useful for all binocular uses but can come especially useful for glass and contact-wearers, because eye relief is the distance from your eyes to oculars, and for glass-wearers glasses happen to stand on the way here. That is why both of these groups should look for binoculars with eye relief with long eye-relief, which is around 16mm to 18mm ideally. For non-glass-wearers, this can also come handy, although a mid-range eye-relief of 14-16mm can also do a good job. Eye-relief is important because it allows the hunter to see the entire area and it also puts less pressure on your eyes, making the whole experience more comfortable. So, when buying, make sure to check the specifications and see if the model you are interested in has long enough eye relief for your needs.
3. Prism type
There are two types of prism out there, and both have their advantages and disadvantages to consider. We are talking, of course, about Porro prism and roof prism binoculars. Binoculars with Porro prism have better basic optical quality, are cheaper, typically wider and more traditional in design, and there are two types of these, standard, where eyepieces are closer and reverse Porro prism binoculars, where eyepieces are further apart. With both sub-types there will be no light-loss and light goes through the objective in Z pattern and with four reflections. While Porro prism binocular models give rich depth of field and 3-D like quality, the negative sides of this prism system are size and weight, comparing to much lighter roof prism models. What is different in roof prism binoculars is the way the light is transmitted. Here the light doesn’t make a Z pattern, but instead, it goes in straight line. The greatest benefits of this type is that it can be optically superior, lighter and aesthetically more appealing. The downside of this prism type is the price, as for the same money you give for an average roof prism binocular, you can get a top quality Porro prism model.
One of the most important factors to consider when buying binoculars is zoom power a.k.a. magnification. This number usually varies from 7X to little above 50X magnification, depending on a model. For those hunters who need a good zoom, it is important to know the higher the number, the bigger zooming power. Although 50X magnification doesn’t guarantee the quality of the image itself, as this depends on other factors, it gives the possibility to see close-up details. What happens is that the steadiness of image becomes debatable with higher magnification, but fortunately this can be fixed with a tripod. The downside of zoom binoculars would definitely be reduced field of view and lower quality of images, which happens with higher magnification power. This is why it is important to check which model has the widest field of view, as with zoom binocular models, if you decide to go after these, you may easily end up buying a model with narrower field of view. Unless field of view is not one of the most important factors for you when buying, buying zoom binos which do not operate with a wider field of view, might not be the best investment. If you don’t need extreme zoom, even 10x magnification will do great in most hunting situations.
5. Focus systems
6. Exit pupil
There are different models of binoculars out there. While some can be used for daytime only, there are some specifically adapted for nighttime situations, but also some which can function well in both situations. Exit pupil is measured in millimeters and is counted by dividing diameter lens size by magnification power. For daytime use, the best optimum would be from 2-4 mm of exit pupil which comes naturally to the human eye which dilates 2-3mm in daytime, but for nighttime use and low-light hunting conditions, you might need to consider a model with larger exit pupil, ideally from 5 to 7mm. This is important because if you use a model which is perfectly suited for daytime and has 3mm of the exit pupil, at night it will get only 3mm, and human pupil opens in 5-7mm in low light. If you are opting for a model which can serve you in both daytime and nighttime, you should look for models with larger exit pupil, from 4 to 7mm.
7. Additional features
In the end, we would like you to pay attention to additional features, as this can help you narrow the selection of models and lead you to the one that is just right for you.These include zoom binoculars, which we already mentioned, laser rangefinding binoculars, image stabilization binoculars and ruby coated models. Laser rangefinding is especially useful when we are looking for laser-like precision when targeting. Laser, in this case, can provide angles for uphill and downhill, as well as adjusted distances. The laser is emitted onto the target, afterward the distance is displayed on the lenses, which is more than useful, as it definitely improves precision and saves the time. When it comes to image stabilization, this is an important asset, as stable image is crucial when it comes to hunting. This is a simple mechanism which provides steady image just by depressing a button, so you won’t need a tripod. As simple as that! The last from this group is ruby coated binocular. This is a simple coating found on objective lenses, and its main function is to repel red light-waves and minimize reflections and haze, but on the negative side, it produces green and blue tint which is not so great when you are looking for a realistic image.