Binoculars are our adventure companions, whether as a spectator in sports, hiking, sailing, while on a tour, or during hunting season. A good pair of binoculars should yield excellent image quality, high magnification power, and should be durable. On average, binoculars stand anywhere between a few tens to thousands of dollars. So what to do when your budget is $500? Read on.
Best binoculars Under $500
Below is a list of our favorite binoculars under $500, with awesome features and of course, at prices that would not break the bank.
Built with multi-purpose functionality, the Nikon 8252 Aculon is designed to perfection for those seeking an economically priced yet versatile and quality binocular. It comes with an exceptional zoom for long-range viewing and a wide aperture for excellent light accommodation. It promises a high-definition view and amazing experience.
- No-fault repair/ replacement policy
- Multi-coated eco glass lens for crisp images
- Durable rubberized coating to ensure non-slip grip
The Gosky binocular is equipped with 10x magnification and a large field of view particularly designed for outdoor activities. Its fully multi-coated green film lens and clear prism provides high-resolution images with accurate color reproduction. it also comes with a bonus smartphone adapter allowing you to capture stunning views quickly.
- Rainproof and Fog proof
- Ergonomic, comfortable and aids fast focus
- Tripod compatible
The Bushnell binocular promises high-quality and affordable optics for the sportsperson. It features Bak4 prisms for the brightest, high definition images and will work optimally even in harsh weather. Its non-slip rubber armor enables for a firm grip and shock absorption.
- 100 % waterproof
- Multi-coated optics for superior light transmission
- Durable design and trusted longevity
Designed with HD optical coating technology and ED glass, the Carson 3D series binoculars ensure the brightest and clearest image production. Its extra-long eye relief with twist down eyecups makes it suitable for eyeglass wearers. The Carson products are backed by America’s best binoculars warranty.
- It is waterproof and fog proof
- Fully multi-coated lenses
- Rubberized armour textured coating
The ATN Binox HD binoculars has proven unique with its smart day and night vision features designed to provide crystal-clear images. Its built-in rangefinder allows you to range your target without additional equipment. It possesses an e-zoom ability to enable magnification of target without losing the objects in your field of view.
- HD day and night vision
- 3D gyroscope and e-compass
- Allows recording of HD videos
Binoculars Under $500 Buyer’s Guide
Binoculars are a must-have for bird-watching, hunting, sports, and hiking enthusiasts, among others. Like all products, they come in all shapes, sizes, and capabilities. However, there are a basic set of factors to look out for to ensure you end up with the right product.
Our buying guide reviews the best binoculars on the market priced under $500 to give you the means to compare them and make an informed choice quickly.
The aperture of your pair of binoculars is the first factor to consider. It is a measure of the diameter of the objective lenses in millimeters. The larger the aperture, the bulkier and heavier the binoculars will be. A larger aperture also means a wider field of view for the same magnification.
Larger apertures mean greater surface areas for incident light and thus will accommodate more light for brighter images. Also, the larger the aperture of a binocular pair, the better its performance in low light conditions.
The principal purpose of any binocular is to provide a clearly magnified view of distant objects by making them look closer and larger. The magnification is the next most important factor to look out for.
Many people often think that the higher the magnification, the better, but it is not necessarily so. By rule of thumb, the higher the magnification, the smaller the field of view and the less stable the image. If you want to invest in a pair of binoculars with very high magnification (anything above 16x), then you should be ready to buy a tripod stand to ensure image stability.
Balancing magnification and field of view falls on the aperture. A tripod also becomes necessary for binoculars with large apertures, as they can get quite heavy.
Basic binoculars are split into two broad categories. The design of a binocular is determined by what prism is used on the inside to correct the image after it has passed through the objective lens. Generally, Porro prisms are simpler and inexpensive to make, and so are the ideal make for cheaper binoculars.
Whilst they are more expensive compared to the Porro prisms, roof prism binoculars are generally manufactured to enable better optical quality and aid mechanical tolerance.
Although it doesn’t promise 100% crash protection, rubber coating on binoculars is very helpful for comfort and ensures a good grip in wet conditions.
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