Expert birding binocular reviews of the best 3 bird watching binoculars. Comparisons of the best birding binocular specifications so you know what to look for.
Reading a collection of birding binocular reviews is a great first step to owning your own pair. With so many models, lines, and manufacturers to choose from, it’s important that you become familiar with what consumers think of their performances.
There are many places to find reviews on the Internet—including the page you’re looking at right now—and many of them offer great insights into the way binocs work in the real world.
But it helps to know what you should keep your eyes open for before you begin reading through the reviews.
Birding Binocular Specifications: What to Look For
While you are scouring the numerous birding binocular reviews out there, take note of the positive attributes that get mentioned. You’ll see right away that people are happier with certain types of prisms, smaller magnifications, more portability, and devices that can take a licking and keep on kicking.
Here’s a primer on things to look for when choosing your own pair of bird watching binocs.
- Prism – Porro prisms are cheaper, but they’re also heavier and therefore less portable. For the casual observer, this is just fine, but for more experienced bird watchers, roof prisms (which usually offer internal focusing and weigh much less) are the best idea.
- Magnification – The best magnification for birding binoculars is 8x, because it offers enough clarity and sharpness in image without being too weighty.
- Size – If you are a birder who likes to get out into nature (as opposed to back porch observing), you’ll want a pair of binocs that are small and lightweight. Fortunately most models are designed with this in mind.
- Durability – Another important factor if you’re going to be marching through the woods on your birding expeditions: you should acquire glasses that are safe from water, fog, dust, and shock.
Birding Binocular Comparison: 3 Reviews
To give you a solid piece of ground to start from on your journey to finding the best birding binoculars, take a look at these three mini reviews of suitable specs.
Bushnell Natureview 8×42 Roof Prism – ($199.99)
This may not be the most lightweight birding model on the market, but they are perfect for watching birds soaring through the air. The field of view on these Natureview specs spans more than 400 feet and the prisms are fully multi-coated for optimal clarity. These don’t have the best close-viewing distance, but they’re great for catching sight of those fliers who don’t let you get too near.
Nikon Action 8×40 – ($99.99)
With a field of view of 420 feet at 1,000 yards, the Nikon Action birding binocs are great for distance viewing of large flocks. They also have a speedy central focusing system that allows you to catch detail quickly without missing a view. For the value-conscious birder, the Nikon Action is a must-have.
Olympus Outback 8×21 RC1 – ($49.99)
There are downsides to buying such an inexpensive pair of birding binoculars: cheaper materials, clunky design, less quality in color and clarity. But the Olympus Outback 8×21 RC1 has a few things going for it: super compact design, versatile function, and fairly sturdy construction. If you’re new to the bird watching world, these are great starter specs.
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