Types of Binoculars and The Buying Guide

Fact Checked By:Samuel Carter

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Whether you are going hiking, camping or even bird watching, one of the most crucial gears to get for these outdoor activities is binocular. A binocular increases the depth of the viewed feature since you can be able to distinguish the object viewed at a closer point. The best binoculars for bird watching and hiking also enables the user to have a clear picture of an item beyond the present obstacles. Without a doubt, this is a great outdoor gear to acquire. It can be a bit hard, especially for beginners, to identify the right binoculars for their outdoor use. So, what should you look for when buying a binocular?


Vortex Optics Diamondback HD Binoculars 10x42
  • 10x magnification & 42mm objective lenses, these Diamondback HD binos are optimized with select glass elements to deliver exceptional resolution, cut chromatic aberration and provide outstanding color fidelity, sharpness and light transmission
  • Fully multi-coated lenses increase light transmission with anti-reflective coatings on all air-to-glass surfaces. Dielectric coating provides bright, clear, color-accurate images. Armortek coating protects exterior lenses from scratches, oil and dirt
  • Adjustable eyecups twist up and down for comfortable viewing with or without eyeglasses. Center focus wheel adjusts the focus of both binocular barrels at the same time. Diopter (located on right Eyepiece) adjusts for differences in a user's eyes.
  • Rubber armor provides a secure, non-slip grip, and durable external protection. Binoculars are tripod adaptable allowing use on a tripod or car window mount.
  • Argon purging and O-ring seals provide water and fog proof performance in all environments. Rugged construction withstands recoil and impact. Includes glass Pak harness.

If you feel a binocular is not for you, have a look at our guide and reviews of the best point and shoot camera for birding or best compact camera for travel or best camera lenses for videography or best outdoor security camera system with dvr or best outdoor wireless security camera system with dvr no internet or best trail camera for $100.

best binoculars

The top best binocular buying guide

The style

There are two main styles of binoculars. Some models are designed with two optical tubes such that you can view objects or animals using both eyes, while open. Others feature one optical lens such that you can only view with one eye and the other closed. So, if you need a binocular that offers comfort, in-depth viewing, and essential viewing, opt for the model made with two optical lenses. One thing to note, though, is that the binocular models with double optical lenses are a bit pricier than single designed models.

The magnification power

This is another crucial factor to consider when buying a pair of binoculars. The binoculars are made with different magnifying power that ranges from 3X up to 10X or more. The choice of the magnifying power will be influenced by the areas you wish to use the gadget at. For example, if you need a binocular for hunting, choose a pair made of high magnifying power so you can be able to get clear viewing of animals from afar. If you need a binocular to use in theatres, consider a pair made of low magnifying power.

The materials

This is a crucial thing to consider, especially for hunters. Assuming most hunters go hunting during the winter seasons, you need to choose a binocular made of durable and waterproof resistance materials. Choose a binocular that has a coating on the outside to prevent it from corroding or rusting. Also, the lens should be fog-resistance to ensure you still get excellent viewing even when it is raining or foggy. The binocular should be made with shock-resistant material such that even if you drop it accidentally on the ground, it cannot break.

Different types of binoculars and their benefits

The following are different types of binoculars you will find on the market today. They include;

  • Roof Prism binoculars

These are the best binoculars and are highly used by hunters or people who want to achieve further viewing. They work by collecting light waves through the lenses that pass through in a series to exit the gadget’s eyepiece. The fact that the light moves in a uniform series enable such binoculars to achieve brighter and even higher magnifying power than other models. These types of binoculars are designed for hunters or bird watchers as they provide better and more compelling viewing than some models.

Swarovski Optik 15x56 SLC Series Water Proof Roof Prism...
  • The purchase Includes Swarovski Optic SLC 15x56 Binocular Field Bag Eyepiece Cover Objective Lens Cover Lift Carrying Strap Swarovski Optic Lifetime Limited
  • 15x magnification
  • Hd Optical system fluorite-containing glass offers 93% light transmission enhancing color fidelity and brightness
  • Incredible 62-degree apparent viewing range


  • They have relatively higher magnifying power than some models.
  • They are super light in weight and feature a compact design.

  • Porro prism binoculars

One of the features that distinguish these types of binoculars from others is the V shape design. The binoculars also have a narrow eyepiece between the objective lens. Unlike the roof prism binoculars, the Porro binoculars work by obtaining the light waves, and the sends it in a horizontal form on different paths. These binoculars have a high in-depth viewing and have a broader viewing of the surroundings than other models. One drawback to note on these types of binoculars is that they are relatively heavy.

Fujinon Polaris 10x50 FMTR Porro Prism Binocular
  • Field Flattner Lens for edge to edge distortion free view.
  • Individual Focus
  • Porro Prosm Optical Design
  • Waterproof


  • The model is quite affordable.
  • It provides an in-depth perception.

  • Night vision binoculars

As the name states, these binoculars are designed for use during the night or in dark areas. They work by absorbing light that is passed through the gadget’s lenses. The light is electronically converted so one can get an optimal view at night or in dark areas. These binoculars do not have high magnifying power to avoid getting blurred viewing. They are perfect hunting binoculars or even bird watching binoculars.

CREATIVE XP Night Vision Binoculars Elite - Digital...
  • CLEAR NIGHT VISION - See in total darkness with our innovative night vision binoculars with infrared illuminator for high-quality visibility without ambient light.
  • FULLY LOADED KIT - Our thermal goggles come with everything you need, including a protective case, a phone/computer SD card reader, a neck strap, a 128 GB SD card, a USB cable, and an easy-to-read manual.
  • FOR VARIED APPLICATIONS - These night vision binoculars can be used for spotting nighttime wildlife, hunting coyotes, searching for ghosts, and home security.
  • RUGGED AND DURABLE - Built to withstand even the most intense activities, these goggles feature a rugged outer shell that protects the inner goggles with ease.
  • EASY VIEWING - Perfect for deer hunting, these binoculars feature a 2.31" TFT screen with a 4x digital zoom, allowing you to capture and view crystal-clear photos and videos in an instant. A must-have piece of hunting gear and equipment for night vision hunting.


  • They are light in weight.
  • It gives excellent viewing in dark areas.
  • It provides excellent surveillance results at night for camping.

  • Marine binoculars

These types of binoculars are designed for people who enjoy sea or water escapes. They feature a significant lens that has reasonable magnifying power so one can get an excellent and in-depth view of the sea animals. Note that these binoculars feature a magnifying power range of 5 to 8 to ensure one gets stable viewing under the water. They are also used for bird watching due to their excellent lense power.

Fujinon Techno Stabi TS1440-14x40 Image Stabilization...
  • Phase Coated
  • Center Focus. Made of fiberglass-reinforced, high durability plastic
  • Fogproof; Waterproof
  • 4 × AA type alkaline batteries
  • 5 Degrees of stabilization


  • These binoculars are super light for comfortable holding when working.
  • They feature waterproof material to prevent them from water damage when used under the sea.
  • They are super easy to operate, including for kids. Thus, these are perfect binocular for kids as well.

  • Astronomy binoculars

These types of binoculars are made with relatively large lenses and high magnifying power so one can get an excellent and closer view of the sky. These binoculars are used for viewing the satellites, moon, stars, and space stations, among others.

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  • They consist of high magnifying power to avoid straining.
  • They are light in weight to ensure comfort when holding them.

  • Opera glasses

When it comes to the level of the magnifying power and the overall designing, the opera glass binoculars are the weakest. The binoculars are recommended for production industries since they help bring the great focus of different details involved in the production field.

Athlon Optics 8x42 Midas UHD Gray Binoculars with ED...
  • Ultra-High Definition View: These ultra-high definition binoculars have exceptional edge-to-edge clarity, sharp detail enhancement, ultra-clear brightness, and true color representation
  • Top-Tier Viewing Experience: Athlon Optics Midas provides ED glass for a sharper image, an edge-to-edge system for image clarity, and a ESP dielectric coating for accurate color reproduction
  • Lightweight & Durable: Magnesium chassis is as tough as a metal chassis but more lightweight; tough XPL lens coating prevents scratches and dirt buildup
  • Versatile Use: Use these binoculars for hunting, birdwatching, stargazing, or as travel accessories
  • Built for the Outdoors: Athlon is a proud US sports optics product company; we are devoted to delivering superior quality optic products and outdoor accessories at a competitive price


  • They offer great magnifying power in production industries and theatres.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

What does 10×50 mean on a pair of binoculars?

A pair of binoculars will always have two numbers marked on them, such as “10×50.” This indicates that the aperture is 50mm and the magnification is 10 times its normal size. It is common for there to be extra information provided when defining the field of vision. For instance, 80m at 1,000m means that you will be able to see an area that is 80m wide while you are at a distance of 1,000m.

The Bottom Line

Get an excellent view, in-depth focus, and even a clear view by acquiring a pair of binoculars. They come in different types and smooth designs to suit various activities and work. Whether you need the best binoculars with a camera, for kids, or performing multiple outdoor activities like hunting, choose the model designed for these activities. The budget will also determine the kind of binocular you get since they are sold at different prices depending on the available features and styles.

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Samuel Carter

This is Samuel Carter. I have been online product reviewing for the last 7 years and owns many product samples from different companies. I love online product reviewing and reviewing is my hobby. I know, choosing a product is very difficult for newbies and that is why I have created this blog to help the newbies. I think might be useful for you. Thanks - Carter

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