Binoculars

fnjeep314

Observer
I guess that this is going to be the best place for this question.

I am looking for a good cheaper(not cheap, but not $200-$300 either) binoculars that I can carry for scouting, wild life watching, just general all around binocular use.

Any input is much appreciated!
 

gobi_recon

New member
I carry the Nikon 8252 ACULON A211 10-22x50 Zoom Binocular ~ $150 and then are a good all purpose binoculars.
 

nwoods

Expedition Leader
I have a pair of compact Nikon's that I like, they are pretty bright and easy to find that "sweet spot" where the view window isn't occluded by the lens housing or whatever it is that causes that.

Other than that, I don't know the answer, but this website has a lot of options to consider:

Edit: Wow, their list of filter criteria is amazing. If you can't find it here, it doesn't exist!
 
Last edited:

CCH

Adventurer
I guess that this is going to be the best place for this question.

I am looking for a good cheaper(not cheap, but not $200-$300 either) binoculars that I can carry for scouting, wild life watching, just general all around binocular use.

Any input is much appreciated!

Optics do have some big quality difference as you go up the chain, not just in optical quality, but durability. In your price range, I'd look for closeouts on last year's model from any reputable company: Vortex, Leupold, Nikon, etc. The other thing to decide is what size you're looking for. A good all around, yet still compact, size is 8x32. In full size, I'd go 10x42. I would stay away from most pocket models especially cheaper ones, and definitely stay away from zooms. Vortex Diamondbacks are good for the money, but pushing your budget depending on the model and where you get them.
 

llamalander

Well-known member
I've had a pair of these for 8 years, they've traveled to a few different countries and spent lots of time in the back seat. The optics are excellent for the price and the close focus is great, but they are not the lightest, I'm willing to take that tradeoff. Side-by-side to a venerable old set of Zeiss, the glass was nearly as clear and sharp in everything but the lowest light.
The warrantee (25 years they say) has gotten a little more complicated, though they still honor it--had to send my wife's pair when the tubes didn't hold the same horizon & got a new set back. Mine have lost a few cosmetic bits, but function exactly as the day I got them. For the price, I haven't felt the need to be kind to them or careful and they've exceeded my expectations.
 

drumguy_18

New member
I really like my Vortex binos, 10x42 is great. The Vortex Diamondback model is great, but a little high for your price range. ($220 on Amazon), the Vortex Crossfire model might fit your budget ($150 on Amazon).
 

Superduty

Adventurer
I have the top of the line Bushnell that I would NOT recommend. A few years later I got the Vortex Diamondbacks and I like them. Good price point for the quality. So, another vote for Vortex.
 

RAFoutdoors

Retired Explorer
My wife and I each have 10X42 Vortex Diamondback binoculars. I use to work for a big box outfitters store and spent a lot of time working with manufacturer reps and customers. We carried Vortex, Nikon, Zeiss, Swarovski, Steiner, Bushnell, Leica, Leopoldo etc. I spent a lot of time talking with customers about different features, manufacturing processes and clarity.
One of the most important point was talking about customer support and warranties. Many of the manufacturers have good customer service but the lifetime warranty from Vortex is huge. No warranty to send in. No questions asked. Lifetime warranty on things like waterproofing, anti fogging etc. I lost one of the lens caps for one of the objective lens. My fault, I should have been more careful but I could not find it anywhere.
I emailed Vortex and had a pair of lens covers for my specific model in my hands in less than a week. No questions asked and no cost, when I sent my original email, I offered to purchase the replacement (my fault) and they would not take payment.
The quality of the binoculars are top notch. Best value. No regrets. Go to a store where you can walk to a window and try different models and manufacturer’s product. And find a sales associate who knows the products.
Good luck
 

jbaucom

Well-known member
I bought my son a pair of Athlon Neos G2 8x42 binoculars for Christmas. I've been pretty impressed for $100. Right now, Adorama has the Athlon Ares 8x36 on sale for $140. Considering that they usually retail for close to $300, and based on my experience with the Neos, I can't imagine that they'd disappoint. For comparison, I have a pair of Nikon Prostaff 7S 8x42 and a pair of Pentax ZD ED 10x43 binos. The Athlon Neos G2 is the equal of the Prostaffs IMO, at half the price.
 

ThundahBeagle

Well-known member
I've got some old, simple Bushnell (Spectator Sport?) model 13-1024's that do well. As the model# indicates they are 10x24 but they are somewhat compact, streamlined, and reverse Purro, so getting them in and out of the case is fast and smooth. Nothing ever gets snagged and I have no problem with the optics. Maybe someday I'll look through something nicer and wonder why I've been wasting my time with these but they seem good to me.

They dont make them exactly like this anymore but probably have something similar
 

jbaucom

Well-known member
Nikon Aculon binoculars are supposed to be good, and they're usually around $100, depending on power and size.
 

ThundahBeagle

Well-known member
Every review for the Vortex Diamondback has mentioned that the Vortex Crossfire is lower priced and better bang for the buck. The Diamondback beats out the Crossfire in every metric but only by a smidge. If I were in the market I'd try the Vortex Crossfire
 

alanymarce

Well-known member
I've used many over the years and currently use Leica as the ones I always have with me. I'd say that the best value for price is the NIkon Aculon. We have two of these and the optical quality is excellent for a low price.
 

ramblinChet

Well-known member
When I was preparing to purchase a pair of binoculars a decade plus ago I was looking to spend maybe $350 or so maximum. My father suggested I purchase one pair that would last me the rest of my life and could be passed down to my son. He spent his life working with professional grade optics and owned equipment from Zeiss including binoculars.

I spent months researching the topic and decided Zeiss Conquest HD 10x42 would be best for my application. They cost more but have proven to be well worth it - I use them frequently. My fathers have been handed down to my younger brother and mine will eventually be handed down to my son, and most likely then onto my grandson.

 

Forum statistics

Threads
186,249
Messages
2,883,802
Members
226,050
Latest member
Breezy78
Top