If you want to see things that are far away, in some cases very far, away then you’re going to need some binoculars.
Would you believe that the first binoculars were put into use in 1608? They were invented in Holland by Hans Lippershey.
However, the kind of binoculars that we use nowadays weren’t invented until 1854 when Ignazio Porro learned to incorporate a prism into the design. This makes binoculars smaller and much easier to carry.
If you need a pair of binoculars, then you probably need one of our recommendations.
Celestron Outland X 8×42
This is an excellent entry-level set of binoculars.
They’re definitely not as small or light as they could be but they are waterproof and well-made.
We’d also note that they’re great for wildlife.
You can find the Celestron Outland X 8×42 online.
Celestron TrailSeeker 8 x 42
Your vision will never fog with these Celstron binoculars.
They’re a big upgrade on the Outland model and include a very wide field of view.
We were disappointed to find they don’t come with a carrying case though.
You can find the Celestron TrailSeeker 8 x 42 online.
Nikon Prostaff 7’s 42mm
These are lovely premium binoculars that are built to last an absolute lifetime, you will never need to buy another pair.
They are also among the sharpest binoculars anywhere.
The downside? You get what you pay for and you pay a lot here.
You can find Nikon Prostaff 7’s 42mm online.
You will either fall in love with these or hate them on sight.
But if you like them, they’re light, well protected in rubber and 100% waterproof.
They don’t have the greatest magnification but they’re more than good enough for most uses.
You can find the Kowa YF30-6 online.
Opticron Adventurer II WP 10 x 50
If you’re looking for the best bargain of the binocular world, then you might want to buy these Opticron binoculars.
The optical quality is out of this world. They are particularly good if you wear spectacles thanks to the eye relief.
The downside? They feel a bit plastic for binoculars at this price point.
You can find the Opticron Adventurer II WP 10 x 50 online.
Pentax AD 8 x 25 WP
A basic set of binoculars that can easily slip into a pocket.
You can even drop these into up to a meter of water and they ought to survive.
We didn’t find this Pentax model very comfortable to use for long periods but they are definitely quite cheap.
You can find the Pentax AD 8 x 25 WP online.
Bushnell Engage Series
A very classic looking set of binoculars from Bushnell.
We like the fact that they stress that the glass is lead-free.
Lead is terrible for the environment and for people too.
The magnesium body is very nice but prone to smudges even though they are “EXO Barrier” coated.
You can find the Bushnell Engage Series online.
Celstron SkyMaster Pro 20 x 80
If you want to do some star watching with your binoculars, these are for you.
Be warned though, they’re big and heavy to give you the kind of magnification you need for astronomy.
We’d mount these on a tripod if we wanted to use them for any real length of time. They’re brilliant, though.
You can find the Celstron SkyMaster Pro 20 x 80 online.
Nikon Prostaff 3S 10 x 42
These binoculars won a bundle of awards when they were launched.
You get a really big field of view and they’re among the lightest on the market.
They are also fully fog proof and waterproof too.
We really liked these and didn’t want to give them back at the end of testing.
You can find the Nikon Prostaff 3S 10 x 42 online.
Vortex Optics Crossfire HD
Vortex make great binoculars and these are really well built, solid binoculars.
They’re made for use in cold weather with big chunky controls you can access when wearing gloves.
The only complaint is that the color cast seems to be slightly off when viewing through them.
You can find the Vortex Optics Crossfire HD online.
Hawke Endurance Series
With a lifetime warranty, you know when you buy Hawke that they’re made to last.
We love the colors with these binoculars and the focusing is really good.
You can find the Hawke Endurance Series online.
Best Binoculars For Birdwatching
If you go birdwatching then you probably want to invest in binoculars that make that hobby easy and these two models are amazing for birders.
Nikon Monarch HG 8 x 42
Possibly the best binoculars available to consumers, we would never be parted from our Nikon Monarch’s.
Sure, they are a bit on the expensive side but the extra-low dispersion glass and locking diopter control give you the best viewing experience of any binoculars we’ve ever tested.
You can find the Nikon Monarch HG 8 x 42 online.
Vortex Optics Viper HD
If you don’t want to spend on the Nikon Monarch then the Vortex Viper HD is an excellent second choice.
Waterproof, fog proof, guaranteed to last and so easy to focus. The crisp detail through these is really amazing.
You can find the Vortex Optics Viper HD online.
Last Word on Binoculars
We hope that you’ve enjoyed our guide to the very best binoculars and that it’s helped you to pick out some binoculars that suit your purposes.
If you intend to use your bins for birdwatching then we’d recommend that you check out our guide to the best birding apps which can help you find places to use your binoculars, identify birds and more. A good field guide to birds for your region is recommended as well.
You might also want to have a look at our best cameras for birdwatching because they’re the perfect companion to your new binoculars, they let you take the birds home with you! (Not literally, of course).