Binoculars By Price

Binoculars By PriceBinocular Reviews Home > By Price

Welcome to the Binoculars By Price section on BBR where I have arranged my reviews, articles and binocular advice by price. By doing this, I hope this this page is of assistance to those who want to more easily find the best binoculars for their money but who have a specific budget in mind:

Contents:

  1. Advice when Shopping By Price
  2. Under $100 (£/€)
  3. Under $200 (£/€)
  4. Under $350 (£/€)
  5. Under $500 (£/€)
  6. Under $1000 (£/€)
  7. Over $1000 (£/€)

1. Advice

General recommendations & advice on what to look for when buying binoculars by price.

In this section you will find general information as well as tips and advice when choosing binoculars based on price. So for instance it is interesting to know what changes and improvements you can expect when you spend more money on an instrument, or what you need to look out for if you have a small budget:

Best Value for Money BinocularsBest Value For Money Binoculars

Here I have listed all the binoculars that I have fully tested and reviewed and which I feel off superb vale for money. I also explain what is necessary in my view for a binocular to be considered great vale for money and why this varies depending on which price point you are looking at.

My selections are arranged into different price categories: From the cheap, right up to high end, alpha type instruments.

 

Best Value For Money Bird Watching Bins

Bird Watching Binoculars
Here I have taken my list of what I consider to be the best value for money binoculars and then selected only those that have also been rated as being ideal for birding from this list.

What is left are what I feel are the best value birding binoculars that I have reviewed on BBR.

Low Cost vs Very Cheap Binoculars

Best Low Cost Binoculars 2016/17 - Opticron Savanna R 8x33
I almost always encourage people to stay away from the sub $50 binocular and rather spend a bit more and get something that won't put you off for life. Here I discuss why.

Cheap vs Expensive Binoculars

Swarovski 8x30 CL Companion Binoculars

Ever wondered what the differences are between binoculars that cost under $100 and those that cost $1000 or more?

Discover the what changes between very cheap & very expensive bins.


 

Cheap Levenhuk Porro Prism BinocularsCheap Binoculars: Is a Roof or Porro Prism Best?

There are two main types (styles) of binocular which is governed by the type of prism that is used within them.

At the high end of the market they are pretty much equal in terms of optical performance because of the use of special coatings. However within the lower price categories the inherent qualities of each design shines through as manufacturers are not able to optimize each design with things like expensive coatings.

Here I ensure that you know what to look in binoculars with either roof or porro prisms.


 
 

2. Best Binoculars Under $100 (£/€)

Looking for the best cheap & low cost binoculars? In this section I offer my advice as well as tips on what to look for and give some and recommendations on the best that I have tested in this price category to help make sure that you get the right binocular for your needs:

 

Best Binoculars Under 100 LogoThe Best Binoculars Under $100 / £100 / €100 - Tested & Reviewed

This BBR list of very best binoculars under $100 (£/€). However how it differs and I think improves on most other similar lists is that this only contains bins that I have actually tested and reviewed.

As well as this, to help make sure you get the right pair of cheap binoculars for your specific needs, you can also filter it depending on your particular requirements or preferences.

So if you are looking to buy binoculars by price and your budget is around $100 and under then this is THE place to start.

 

OpticsHunt's Best Binoculars
Under 100 ($/£/€)

Cheap Nikon Binoculars
According to the OpticsHunt website, these are their top 5 recommended binoculars for less than $100.

I may not necessarily agree with all or indeed any of their choices, but I feel they are worth sharing.

I also offer my own opinions and alternatives for you to take a look at and consider if you are in the market for a cheap binocular.

Best Cheap Binoculars for Older Children under $100 (£/€)

Bird Value Binoculars
Choosing a good serious binocular for a child can be tricky:

They need to be good enough so as to encourage their frequent use, but not too expensive.

They also need to be small and tough to survive the inevitable knocks!


 

 

3. Under $200 (£/€)

If your budget is about $200 or less, you are now looking in the super competitive category of low end to mid level instruments.

At this price range there is less chance of you getting a really bad pair of bins than if you were to spend less than $100, but even so there is a big difference between the best and the worst within this category. However if you are know what to look when buying binoculars at this level then there are also some real bargains and hidden gems to be discovered:

Bushnell 10x42 NatureView BinocularsBest Binoculars Under $200 / £200

This is almost certainly the most competitive price level which in general is good for the consumer, however it can also make it quite easy to become completely overwhelmed with the vast array of choices open to you.

The sheer number of really good quality binoculars on the market for less $200/£200 has increased tenfold over the last decade or so and I have tested quite a few binoculars with a level of features and components that up until recently were only available on much more expensive products. But on the flip side, there are still many others that languish behind the times.

So to ensure that you get one of these hidden gems, this guide offers some of the best that I have tested and reviewed at or under $200 and which I feel are well worth highlighting for you.

 

Best 10x42 Binoculars Under $200 for Birding & Safaris

Nikon Monarch Bird Watching Binoculars
This article is in response to a question that I got from a reader who was going travelling on a safari holiday and wanted a pair of low cost 10x42 binoculars.

I offer them and now you my advice as well as some recommendations perfect for wildlife observation.

Best All-Round Travel Binoculars Under $200

Ideal Travel Binoculars - Hawke Endurance ED 8x32
An answer to a BinoWizard question from a reader wanting low costing versatile travel binoculars that will perform in a wide range of scenarios: whale watching, cruise ships, safaris, kayaking and wildlife observation.

Compact Binoculars Under $200 for Travel /Safari

Steiner Wildlife XP 10x26 Binoculars

Another article that is in reply to a reader question.

This time I take a look at some of the best compact binoculars under 200 that are ideal for travel on a safari holiday.


 

 

4. Under $350 (£/€)

At around $350 and under, you are now deep and safely into mid-level territory.

This is good in that almost all binoculars under $350 to about $200 will operate to a reasonably high level, but like the mid to low end section above, there is a huge amount of options to choose from as almost every brand will have more than one model at this level. So in order to get the best value for money, it is important to take some time to make sure that all the instruments on your shortlist have the maximum level of features and components possible.

The Best 8x32 Binoculars Under $350 (£/€)

Tested, Reviewed & Recommended!
In this article, I answer a question from a reader who was looking to get the best 8x32 binocular and had a budget of less than £350.

In it we first take a look and compare all the top 8x32 binoculars I have reviewed here on BBR and then from there select the top 3 at this price range.

 

Best Binoculars under $350 (£300) for Birding at a Lake

Using Binoculars on a Boat at a Lake

Here I offer up some information, particular considerations and ideas as to which I feel are the best birding binoculars for use at a lake for under $350 / £300

Best ED Binoculars under $350 / £350

Great binoculars under $350 - Vortex Viper HD
A little more specific here: Not only are we only looking at bins under $350, but only considering those that also use ED glass lenses.

Mid Range Binoculars & Night Vision for Safari

Me using Binoculars on Safari

An interesting question that I answer from a reader looking for both night vision and binoculars for their forthcoming safari holiday


 

 
 

5. Under $500 (£/€)

For $500 or a little under, you can and indeed should be getting a really top notch pair of binoculars.

But you need to be careful because even at this mid to high level there are most certainly quite big differences in both the quality of components and coatings used by varying brands and even different ranges from the same brand.

These inequalities then directly translate to differing levels of optical performance and the structural quality from one instrument to another and so are well worth paying attention to:

Top 5 Binoculars Under $400

Using Binoculars on a Boat at a Lake

The best binoculars under $400 from Game & Fish Magazine, as well as my comments & alternatives.

Best 42mm Binoculars for Safaris under $450 / £450

Great binoculars under $350 - Vortex Viper HD
Just less than the $500 budget.

In this document I explore full sized, 42mm binoculars that are ideal for safaris and or wildlife observation for those who have under $450 to spend.

Best Night Vision under $500 / £500

Me using Binoculars on Safari

Be that a binocular, or monocular, if it is a night vision device that you are after, I explore the options available for under $500

With links to reviews and where to buy


 

 

6. Under $1000 (£/€)

For me this is probably the most exciting price range when it comes to binoculars and here is why:

At this level, unless you are getting the very best quality optics, coatings and structural body components, you are getting ripped off. So at under $1000 you can expect to get a binocular that has the potential to perform every bit as well as any of the very high end, Alpha type binoculars in the above $1000 category.

However once again we need to be careful, because quite often it is the small things that can and do make the difference between a binocular being good and great. So here it is super important to consider aspects like the expertise in manufacture, attention to detail and added services like customer care and warranties.

 

Best Hunting Binoculars Under $600 / £ / €

Minox Hunting BinocularsPerfect if you have this kind of budget and looking for a binocular for hunting, but also still well worth reading for those wanting general use and wildlife observation binoculars.

In this article I answer a question from a reader who has €600 to spend, I offer some advice as well as comment on his choices and give a few of my own suggestions.

Full size binoculars at this range that are above $500, but well under $1000 vary a substantial amount in many aspects. But for the most part you shouldn't settle for any that have inferior optics than those nearer to the $1000 mark. For the most part the differences here come down to what the chassis is made from, level of accessories and place of manufacture.

 

Best Binoculars Under $1000 - Reviewed

Below is a selection of the best binoculars that I have fully tested and reviewed at this price range. All of which I would happily endorse. The choice you ultimately make will largely depend on your exact needs and personal preferences:

 

Tract Toric 8x42 Binoculars Review

High end binoculars from Tract Optics, the 8x42 Toric has a lot going for it and is far more than just a hunting binocular that they market it as:

A tough magnesium housing protects a fully Multi-coated optical system with ED Glass Lenses, Scratch & oil-phobic coatings on external surfaces, Phase and Dielectric mirror coated Schmidt-Pechan Roof Prisms that combine well to give a superb image.

Price: (5/6) High Value Binoculars
BBR Ratings:
Body Quality: 8/10 80%
Outstanding
Body Stats: 8/10
Optical Quality: 9/10
Optical Stats: 8/10
Image Quality 9/10
Extras & Details: 6/10

 

Maven 11x45 B2 Binoculars Review

A unique 11x45 configuration using the best quality body and optical components results in an extremely high quality instrument from America that is on a level with the top European brands but at a price that makes them a really attractive proposition.

Highlights include Fully Multi-Coated Optics with ED Glass lenses, phase corrected Abbe-Koenig Roof Prisms and a super stylish, tough and waterproof Magnesium alloy body.

Price: (5/6) High Value Binoculars
BBR Ratings:
Body Quality: 9/10 85%
Outstanding
Body Stats: 7/10
Optical Quality: 9/10
Optical Stats: 8/10
Image Quality 10/10
Extras & Details: 8/10

 

Snypex Knight D-ED 8x42 Binoculars Review

'New and improved' that is how Snypex highlight their latest version of the Knight ED binoculars, which was developed and improved in response to customer as well as BBR's feedback.

Major changes include upgraded dielectric coatings on the prisms to improve light transmission and thus the brightness and image quality as well as changes to the exterior like a full metal focus wheel that not only works better but brings added class to what was already a great pair of binoculars.

Price: (5/6) High Value Binoculars
BBR Ratings:
Body Quality: 9/10 85%
Outstanding
Body Stats: 8/10
Optical Quality: 9/10
Optical Stats: 8/10
Image Quality 9/10
Extras & Details: 8/10

 

Opticron DBA VHD 10x42 Binoculars Review

High end Opticron binoculars that incorporate a raft of high end components and features that I believe add up to make an instrument that not only looks and feels the business, but delivers a very high quality view that even the most critical users will appreciate.

Price: (5/6) High Value Binoculars
BBR Ratings:
Body Quality: 8/10 80%
Outstanding
Body Stats: 8/10
Optical Quality: 9/10
Optical Stats: 7/10
Image Quality 9/10
Extras & Details: 7/10

 

Pentax ZD 8x43 ED Binoculars Review

Pentax Sport Optics flagship series contains all the qualities, components and coatings that you would expect from a high end instrument from a quality optical manufacturer.

Hybrid Aspherical lens elements containing ED glass and a range of specialized high receptivity coatings ensure that these really do deliver a superior image in terms of their clarity, color reproduction, sharpness and low light performance that I feel is as good as the very best at this price level.

Add to this a very well made, classy looking yet tough and waterproof chassis and you have the makings of a very fine binocular.

Price: (5/6) High Value Binoculars
BBR Ratings:
Body Quality: 9/10 80%
Outstanding
Body Stats: 8/10
Optical Quality: 9/10
Optical Stats: 7/10
Image Quality 9/10
Extras & Details: 6/10

 

 

7. Over $1000 (£/€)

There is no doubt that if you spend more than $1000 on a pair of optics, you should be getting a truly superior instrument.

However binoculars definitely follow the rule of diminishing returns and so at this level, the differences between models and brands is very minimal so a lot will come down to personal preferences and often your own affinity with a particular style or brand.


 

The Very Best Binoculars Over $1000 Reviewed

Below are a selection of the very high end (Alpha) binoculars that I have reviewed and in my opinion are ideal if you want, need or won't settle for anything but the best:

 

Swarovski EL 8.5x42 Binoculars Review

By combining the highest quality optical components and coatings with their technical expertise, there is no denying that these Swarovski's produce an image that is unsurpassed.

Add to this their tried and tested exterior and the inclusion of their new FieldPro package and you really do have a special pair of optics.

So If you are looking for the ultimate pair of 42mm binoculars, then you will most certainly not be disappointed with the Swarovski EL 8.5x42 binoculars. These are for me now the reference point and by which all others need to aspire towards.

Price: (6/6) Expensive Binoculars
BBR Ratings:
Body Quality: 9/10 93%
The VERY Best
Body Stats: 8/10
Optical Quality: 10/10
Optical Stats: 9/10
Image Quality 10/10
Extras & Details: 10/10

 

Swarovski EL 10x32 Swarovision Binoculars Review

The new Swarovision EL 10x32 binoculars combine the very best optics and coatings with a waterproof, lightweight and tough Magnesium open bridge body to produce one of the very best mid sized binoculars currently on the market.

Optical features include Field flattener lenses to correct field curvature, Phase correction and dielectric coatings on the roof prisms and fully multi-coated Swarobright lens coatings for a much better light transmission.

Price: (6/6) Expensive Binoculars
BBR Ratings:
Body Quality: 9/10 95%
The VERY Best
Body Stats: 8/10
Optical Quality: 10/10
Optical Stats: 10/10
Image Quality 10/10
Extras & Details: 10/10

These Binoculars are On SaleDiscounted Binoculars: The Swarovski EL 10x32 SV binoculars are available at a discount on Amazon.com, Binoculars.com and Eagle Optics in the USA
>> Check Prices
 

 

Your Comments & Opinions

If you have anything to say on this section of my BBR, if you think that I have missed out anything or if you have a suggestion for an article or advice that you would like me to include here, please ad to the comments section below: