This post contains affiliate links. If you click on a link and make a purchase I earn a small commission at no extra cost for you.
When hiking, hunting, or backpacking a good pair of compact binoculars can always be useful. The best small binoculars for outdoors should fit in any pack or pocket without adding much weight or bulk. There is already plenty of stuff to pack for your outdoor adventures, such as provisions, a sleeping bag, a tent, and other camping equipment. But a small pair of binoculars should always be with you on such adventures, there is a lot to see, for example observing animals or exploring the terrain. Binocular manufacturers have a range of compact binoculars on offer, leaving it to you to find the best small binoculars for your outdoor activities.
One of the most popular compact binoculars under 50 dollars, is the Bushnell Powerview Compact Binoculars line. They are great for general purposes, fold down to a tiny size, weigh hardly more than 10 ounces, come in magnifications from 8x to 16x, and perform well under daylight conditions. The favorable price makes them a bestseller under compact binoculars.
Features of the best compact binoculars from Bushnell
- Has Fully-coated optics providing a brighter view
- Features Non-slip rubber covering to prevent slippage and absorb shock while offering great grip
- Fold-down eyecups and center focus system
- Lens Coating: Fully
- Prism System: Roof, Prism Glass: BK-7
- Not water/fog proof
The Bushnell’s PowerViewv Compact series comes in a whole range of magnification options and collection lens diameters. The smallest, the 8×21 model is really compact and lightweight weighing only 7 ounces.
Magnification steps up to 10x, 12x to the strongest, the 16×32 model weighing nearly twice that. These magnification options let you choose the best small binoculars to provide the observational detail that you need. If you need powerful magnification to see far stuff in detail choose the 16×32 binoculars. But keep in mind that a strong magnification of 16 power by an aperture of only 32mm costs viewing comfort. In addition, 16x magnification is difficult to keep still while observing, because light binoculars only have low mass inertia of their own, so even a slight trembling of the hands is transmitted to the binoculars
Fully coated lenses and the more affordable BK7 glass prisms provide sufficient optical performance for such budget binoculars. However, light transmission and image brightness would have been better with Bak 4 prism, but this would also hike up the price.
The Bushnell’s compact line model’s outsides are covered with a non-slip rubber providing safe handling and it acts as a shock absorber in case the device gets dropped by accident. For better storage, the eyecups are foldable.
The Center focus system allows you to quickly adjust the view and sharpen in on the object you viewing.
Their lightweight construction of compact binoculars provides the advantage to the user of not tiring so fast during extended observations. No need to lean against a steady object, as holding with one hand is often sufficient for observation.
These compact binoculars from Bushnell are also suitable for children as with their small size they fit small faces well and the low weight makes it easy for kids to handle them.
As with most Bushnell binoculars, a neck strap and a carrying case are included with the PowerView Compact line. The company provides also a limited lifetime warranty which shows customers that the company has the utmost trust in its products.
Unfortunately, the Powerview Compact models do not handle extreme weather conditions well. Even though they are made from quality materials they are not fog-proof and waterproof as the housing is not o-ring sealed. If you depend on binoculars that withstand tough weather during your outdoor adventures then have a look at the models designed for professional outdoorsmen.
One of the most affordable models in this group is the Bushnell Legend Ultra HD, maybe this would be the best small binoculars for you. It is very compact and 100% waterproof.
Keep in mind that even the best small binoculars can not offer the optical performance of larger binoculars. In order to be of such compact dimensions, the focal length is much shorter, the collection lenses are smaller, which results in less light-gathering power as well as a smaller exit pupil.
Verdict of Bushnell Powerview Compact Binoculars
These are nice little binoculars from a reputable manufacturer. Bushnell is a sound, trusted brand and users will get to see the reason why their products are bestselling.
The Powerview Compact comes at a super affordable price with the budget-conscious customer in mind. But be aware that if you need more tough and durable binoculars that resist bad weather conditions, it would be better to spend a bit more and get waterproof compact birdwatching binoculars.
And if optical performance is what you want, then there are better alternatives that you should look at.
Otherwise, the Powerview Compact Models will do fine and are nice to have for occasional viewing. It’s a small, handy model to have on hand when you need to quickly investigate something which is too far away for the naked eye. As for the super low price, they are great value binoculars.
Compact models are characterized by their small size, low weight, and often low price. Because they’re so small, they’re perfect for on the go. However, compact binoculars are only recommended in good lighting conditions, in twilight or in shady forests images may be dark. They are also often a challenge for people who wear glasses, as inexpensive models often have short eye relief and so the glasses usually have to be removed for viewing. The low weight makes it difficult to hold them steady in the hand, so models with a lower magnification are an advantage. 8x magnification is often the best compromise.