What are the Best Hunting Binoculars?

Hunting is one of the activities where binoculars are most used these days. Depending on where you are hunting and what are you hunting for, good binoculars are often vital to your success. So hunters have high demands on binoculars.

Steiner Predator 10×42 Roof Prims Binoculars

Steiner Predator Series Hunting Binoculars, 10x42

The Steiner Predator binoculars are a top choice for hunting. These handy and compact binoculars provide razor-sharp, contrast-rich images. High-quality optics with fully multi-coated glass surfaces and phase-corrected roof prisms ensure bright, clear, and high-contrast images.

The O-ring sealed and nitrogen-filled housing is made of glass fiber reinforced Makrolon. It is 100% waterproof, protects the inner optics and guarantees reliability in all environments from deserts to the arctic.

What to look for when buying binoculars for hunting

When hunting you are exposed to nature and the elements, and you and your gear have to cope with harsh conditions. Binoculars for hunting need to be particularly robust and waterproof to work in all environmental conditions.

Since the types of hunting are different, it is not easy to say which binoculars are best for hunting. You have to distinguish how you hunt, whether you sit glassing in a hunting blind and wait until the game comes close enough, or whether you track and stalk the game, and whether you hunt during the day, at dawn, or at night.

Different hunting techniques also require different glasses and every hunter has another favorite bino depending on their hunting style.

Size

Most hunters wear their binoculars with a neck strap to have it quick at hand. So weight matters. If you want more magnification power and more twilight performance, the bulk and weight increase, which is at the expense of handiness.

For still hunting during the daytime when there is enough light, quality binoculars with a 32 mm lens are sufficient, 42 mm is ok but that’s almost on the heavy side. Recommended power is around 8 or 10 times, with a 42 mm aperture even 12x. These sizes are just light enough to carry around with you all day.

Field Of View

Binoculars with a wide field of view are great for scanning the terrain and finding a game that is hiding in the woods. These are just some of the things a good pair of binoculars offers. Below are some of the best binoculars for hunting.

When it gest dark

However, a lot of the game can only be seen during dawn or dusk, when light conditions are not ideal. Hunting binoculars with more twilight performance are needed so that details can be seen in the morning or evening hours.

When hunting out of a blind, in twilight and night-time binoculars with a lens aperture of 50 mm and more are needed. The magnification should be around 8 to 12 times. These big binoculars are heavy, but the larger lenses collect a lot of light, so you can still see details in low light or even in the moonlight. A higher weight has the advantage that you can hold the instrument very still, for a while when it gets heavy though you want to lean it on something or use a tripod.

Image quality – contrast

When hunting, color fidelity is not quite as important as when observing birds. But it can be critical when hunting to have high-contrast images so that the game stands out can be recognized well against a dark background even in low-light conditions.

The contrast of the images depends on the choice of optical glass and the type of optical coating as well as the inner construction of the optics to avoid unwanted stray light, backlight reflections, etc. All these features are appreciated but high-quality glass and coatings also drive up the price.

Handling and Focusing

So hunting binoculars have to perform well in terms of the optics to meet the high demands of hunters. But they must also be robust and have durable mechanics. Of course, they should be O-ring sealed to be waterproof and fog proof, so that they can withstand the outside conditions where it can be cold and wet. The focus wheel must be easy and gentle to use, even when it is cold and you are wearing gloves.

How much are good hunting binoculars

Hunters are among the best customers for high-end binoculars, they place a high value on quality and optical performance. Who can afford it buys binoculars from premium optics brands. True, these “high-tech tools” cost a mint, but you buy them once, they last forever. And in case, the premium brands cover their products with a lifetime warranty.

Well, luckily there are also many affordable binoculars that are also very good.

Bushnell Legend Ultra HD Binoculars

Bushnell Legend Ultra HD Compact Folding Roof Prism Binoculars, 10 x 25-mm, Black

The Bushnell Legend Ultra HD 10×25 is one of the lightest and most compact binoculars weighing in only about 10 ounces. Thanks to its small size, it fits into any pocket and is ideal for the spontaneous observation of wild animals, birds, or just scanning the scenery.

It is a practical second binocular, that comes in handy when your main binoculars are large and bulky.

The good Bushnell workmanship and quality materials, such as ED Prime glass (extra-low dispersion)and coated Bak4 prisms ensure a crystal clear, bright, and vivid picture. The waterproof housing is made of magnesium, the exterior lenses are water repellent thanks to a RainGuard HD lens coating.

Features

  • Extra-low dispersion prime glass for high-resolution images
  • Fully Multi-coated lenses and phase-coated prims
  • Field of View – 283 feet at 1000 yards
  • Eye relief 17mm

Pros

  • Comfortable and lightweight
  • Durable, made from high-quality materials
  • Fog proof and waterproof
  • ED glass  and Bak 4
  • Close Focus 6 feet

Cons

  • Not for low light conditions

Vortex Optics Viper HD 10×42 Binoculars

Vortex Optics Viper HD Roof Prism Binoculars

The Viper HD 10×42 is a compact, lightweight, ergonomically designed binoculars that are great for hunting or bird watching. ED glass, multi-coated Lenses, and phase-corrected prisms provide impressive image quality, high light transmission, and color-true images. Rubber-reinforced housing provides grip and protection against tough outdoor conditions. The Instrument is water and fog-proof, thanks to O-ring seals and Argon purging. Great value binoculars that perform like more expensive premium models but at an affordable price.

Features

  • Extra-Low Dispersion glass HD lenses for excellent image quality
  • Phase coated prisms
  • Eye Relief 17mm
  • Adjustable Eye Cups
  •  Argon purged, O-ring sealed, Waterproof and Fog

Pros

  • Very lightweight and compact, only 25 ounces
  • Durable, coated with “rubber armor” in case of dropping, etc.
  • Armor Tek outer exterior lens coating
  • great for the eyeglass wearer, thanks to long eye relief
  • Affordable – but with top of the line features

Cons

  • There is nothing to complain

Nikon 7576 MONARCH 5 8×42 Binocular

Nikon 7576 Monarch 5 8x42 Waterproof/Fogproof Roof Prism Binoculars Bundle with Lens Cleaning Brush & Essential Accessories (5 Items)

These binoculars have a rubber-armored body to make them durable and endure tough use in any climate or environment. The Nikon Monarch LIne features excellent optics such as premium Extra-Low Dispersion glass multicoated lenses and dielectric phase-coated prisms. All ensuring great optical performance as one expects from Nikon.

Features

  • 100% waterproof and fog proof
  • Rubber-armored body for durability
  • Multi-coated eco glasses
  • Turn and slide eyecups made of rubber
  • Extra-Low Dispersion glasses

Pros

  • Lightweight and durable
  • 19.5 mm eye relief suitable for eyeglass wearers
  • Prisms with dielectric phase coating provide excellent image quality

Cons

  • none for that price they come at

Leica 10×42 Geovid Laser Rangefinding Binoculars

Leica Geovid 10x42 HD-R 2700 (40804), Black

These binoculars will surely amp up your entire hunting experience to a new level with its built-in laser rangefinder. The rangefinder provides an accurate range up to one mile and features premium optical quality essential for serious hunting enthusiasts.

Features

  • Thermometer
  • Barometer
  • Inclinometer
  • Built-in 3000-yard laser range finder
  • Waterproof and fog proof
  • Non-slip grip housing made of rubber for durability
  • Includes integrated ballistics computer

Pros

  • Made of top of the line HD fluoride glass with Perger-Porro prism system
  • Wide field of range for a 10x binocular
  • Allows user limited customization in ballistics curve for the load through a micro-SD card
  • Includes an external ballistics app where atmospheric conditions such as temperature, pressure and incline can be displayed for input

Cons

  • Hefty price
  • Buttons can cause confusion, take time getting used to

Zeiss 10×42 Victory RF Binoculars

Zeiss Victory RF 10x42 (524549-0000-000)

Believed to be one of the most accurate and reliable rangefinders on the market. These binoculars are made of premium fluoride glass for high optical quality.

Pros

  • Very accurate range finding capabilities
  • Large field of view
  • The ranging button is easy to use and placement is ideal
  • Includes a light button, similar to a trigger on a rifle, to keep you from moving off target while using it

Cons

  • Some users complained of several “no reads” offhand
  • Limited ballistic function to 500 yards

 

Compromise on Hunting Binoculars

The nature of the hunt may require different binoculars. If you are still hunting, tracking the game through dense forest, you will likely prefer a model with a wide field of view. And if you are sitting in a stand at dusk, a low-light model is more desirable.

Actually, every hunter would need more than one pair of binoculars to be prepared for different situations. And in fact, quite a few hunters have three or four binoculars, which they have acquired over the years for various purposes.