Maven C3 10x50 vs Athlon Midas G2 10x50 UHD Binoculars

The question for the BinoWizard this week comes from a BBR Patreon supporter who is looking for a pair of 10x50 binoculars for his brother in law who works as a wildlife/forest officer:

Question

Hello – Thanks so much for your website. It is really incredible how much information is on there. I was hoping you could help me with a problem I have. My brother in law who is a wildlife/forest officer in India is looking to get a pair of 10x50 binoculars. He likes the Maven C-3 10x50 and the Athlon Optics Midas G2 UHD Binocular – 10x50 but is not able to choose between the two. Do you have any advice/thoughts on which is better?

Answer:

Firstly, I would like to say a massive thank you for becoming a supporter of BBR on Patreon. It really means a lot and genuinely helps support the continuation of the BBR website and YouTube channel going forward. 

As to your question, I am very confident from their reputations as well as my prior dealings with different models from both brands that both the Athlon Midas G2 10x50 UHD and the Maven C3 10x50 binoculars are very good quality instruments within this price range.

This along with your choice of a 10x50 configuration which I feel is a good match for the intended use of wildlife observation in a forested region means that I am also very confident that either would be a good option and thus you can be quite confident that there is no wrong choice between the two. However, let us see if we can find which one is best for your brother-in-law’s particular needs and preferences:

Comparison Table

Unfortunately, I have not used either, but I have tested and reviewed a number of other models from both Athlon Optics and Maven and so as I always recommend doing in my guide on How to Choose Between Binoculars, let us first draw up a table listing their main features and specifications of each so we can make some easy comparisons:

As you can see, above I have also included the excellent Kite Lynx HD+ 10x50, it is more expensive, yes, but as I have fully tested and reviewed it, I can use it as a point of reference.

As I say, looking at their main specifications, with features like dielectric mirror coatings on phase corrected prisms, fully multi-coated optical systems with extra Scratch & Oil Resistant coatings on the outer lens surfaces, both his choices are very strong options within this price range.

Athlon Midas G2 10x50 UHD Binoculars

Athlon Midas G2 10x50 UHD Binoculars

As I have written about in the past, the instruments in the Athlon Midas Series, are in my opinion the Best Athlon Binoculars for the Money and indeed some of the best value binoculars in general currently on the market and these latest G2 UHD versions look to be no different.

Strengths & Weaknesses
As we can see from the specifications table above they are the least expensive option, yet possess all the main components and coatings as that of the Maven and the Kite which is impressive.

Chassis Material & Weight
An aspect that stands out to me is that they incorporate a Magnesium frame whilst the Maven C3 uses polycarbonate. A polymer chassis is not inherently a bad thing, indeed it often makes for a more lightweight binocular which is what we see between these two, but they are often not as robust (although the ones used by Steiner are extremely tough) and sometimes don’t ooze as much in terms of the feeling of quality.

So here I would say unless you specifically need a more lightweight instrument, a Magnesium Chassis would be preferable.

Field of View
Whilst not as wide as the Kite, the Athlon Midas G2 10x50 UHD Binocular still has a reasonably wide FOV for a 10x binocular and is a fair bit wider than that of the Maven.

I feel that for use in a forested area, this is a definite advantage and a feature that I would look for in this particular use. Out in the open, it is not as important, but in a forest, it can help make it easier and quicker to locate fast moving animals and birds at closer ranges.

Close Focus
On the negative side, the minimum close focus is fairly long and thus there will not be a good choice should your brother-in-law like to often view things like insects, flowers, or even birds from very close range.

Eye-Relief
Of the three above, these have the least amount of eye-relief, which is not a big deal unless you need to wear glasses whilst using your binoculars. For more see: How To Use Binoculars With Glasses: Eye-relief & Eye-cups Explained.

Buy & Compare Prices: Athlon Midas G2 10x50 UHD

Maven C3 10x50 Binoculars

Maven C3 10x50 Binoculars

In many ways, the strengths of this Maven binocular are the weaknesses of the Athlon:

Weight:
The Maven C3 10x50 Binoculars are reasonably lightweight for a 50mm binocular and this a good choice for long days in the field and long observation periods.

Eye-Relief
At 19.5mm, the eye-relief is excellent, which is especially important should your brother-in-law need to use some sort of eyewear.

Close Focus Distance
At 6,7ft the minimum focus distance is also excellent for a full-sized binocular with a 10x power, this is great if you often encounter and view objects like flowers or butterflies at close range.

Field Of View
In comparison to the Athlon and especially the Kite, the relatively narrow view is probably the weakest aspect to this binocular. When out in the open and over longer distances, this is not necissarily an issue, but at close range and for viewing things like small fast and erratic moving birds, I would prefer as wider view as possible as it makes picking up and than following them easier.

Buy & Compare Prices: Maven C3 10x50 Binoculars

Conclusion

So as I say, there is no wrong answer here, rather he/you need to choose the pair that most closely matches your needs based on your particular needs.

In terms of the optical components and coatings, they are both are very similar and thus even without being able to compare them side-by-side, I would be still quite confident that the quality of the view would also be very close.

I hope that this has helped somewhat. Please let me know if you have any follow-up questions or need any further advice or direction.

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