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10 Best Compact Binoculars [2019 Complete Guide]

Best Compact Binocular

If you are a hiker, birdwatcher, traveler, hunter, and outdoor enthusiast, then you understand the value of carrying compact binoculars during your adventures.

They eliminate the agony of struggling to locate and spot the amazing things you encounter outdoors because they are too far away.

When shopping for compact binoculars, features such as magnification and field of view can seem too confusing and make it harder for you to choose the best fit for your outdoor activities.

Dive into our comprehensive top 10 compact binoculars review to get you started on choosing the best gadget for all your outdoor adventures.

10 Best Compact Binoculars – Reviews

IMAGE

​PRODUCT

​FEATURES

Celestron 71330

1. Celestron 71330 (Best Compact Binoculars for Intermediate Users)

  • Superior 8x32mm magnification
  • Wide 388 ft/1000 yds field of view
  • BaK4 fully multi-coated prims glass for sharp and bright images
  • Waterproof and rugged for harsh weather protection
Nikon 7548

2. Nikon 7548 (Best Compact Binoculars for Professionals)

  • Fog-proof, waterproof, and suitable for all-terrain
  • Exceptional 8x42mm magnification and wide 330 ft/1000 yds angle of view
  • Multi-layer prism coatings on lenses for accurate color reproduction
  • Extra-low dispersion (ED) glass elements for enhanced brightness and color
Bushnell Powerview

3. Bushnell Powerview (Best Budget Compact Binoculars)

  • Reasonably-priced and very affordable
  • Wide coverage with 378 ft/1000 yds angle of view
  • Fully-coated lenses for vivid and bright images
  • Lightweight and portable for day-long use
Wingspan Optics PS-83201

4. Wingspan Optics PS-83201 (Good Compact Binoculars for Birdwatching)

  • Superior 8x32mm magnification for clear images
  • An excellent angle of view of 362 ft/1000 yds
  • Superior BaK4 glass prism for vivid images
  • Comes with plenty of accessories
Nikon Trailblazer 8217

5. Nikon Trailblazer 8217 (Best Compact Binoculars for Astronomy)

  • A large angle of view of 429 ft/1000 yds
  • BaK4 glass prism for high-resolution views
  • Waterproof and fog-proof for harsh conditions
  • Lightweight and fatigue-free at 0.97 pounds
Bushnell BN138005

6. Bushnell BN138005 (Easy to Use Compact Binoculars)

  • Easy-to-use features
  • Superior BaK4 glass prisms for crisp images
  • Waterproof and fog-free
  • Lightweight and strain-free at 0.75 pounds
G4Free 4331882450

7. G4Free 4331882450 (Great Compact Binoculars for Concerts)

  • Great 12x25 magnification for concert viewing
  • The moderate angle of view for retention of image quality
  • Premium BaK4 glass prism for superior image quality
  • Magnesium body for elegance and durability
Occer 888635

8. Occer 888635 (Good Compact Binoculars Low-Light Sightseeing)

  • Low-light night vision feature
  • Premium BaK4 glass prism for accurate color reproduction
  • Superior 12x25mm magnification and optimal angle of view
  • Life waterproofing
Leica Ultravid 40252

9. Leica Ultravid 40252 (Premium Compact Binoculars)

  • Premium prism with P40 phase-correcting coating and HighLux-System HLS
  • A wide and comfortable angle of view of 341 ft/100 yds
  • HDC multi-coating and AquaDura on outer lenses
  • Lightweight and comfortable at 0.53 pounds
Zeiss B018JRGUR2-P

10. Zeiss B018JRGUR2-P (Pocket Compact Binoculars)

  • Superior magnification of 10x25mm
  • Premium ED glass lenses with Hydrophobic ZEISS MC
  • Water-resistant and weatherproof
  • Compact and lightweight at 0.68 pounds

PRODUCT

1. Celestron 71330

(Best Compact Binoculars for Intermediate Users)

Celestron 71330
  • Superior 8x32mm magnification
  • Wide 388 ft/1000 yds field of view
  • BaK4 fully multi-coated prims glass for sharp and bright images
  • Waterproof and rugged for harsh weather protection

2. Nikon 7548

(Best Compact Binoculars for Professionals)

Nikon 7548
  • Fog-proof, waterproof, and suitable for all-terrain
  • Exceptional 8x42mm magnification and wide 330 ft/1000 yds angle of view
  • Multi-layer prism coatings on lenses for accurate color reproduction
  • Extra-low dispersion (ED) glass elements for enhanced brightness and color

3. Bushnell Powerview

(Best Budget Compact Binoculars)

Bushnell Powerview
  • Reasonably-priced and very affordable
  • Wide coverage with 378 ft/1000 yds angle of view
  • Fully-coated lenses for vivid and bright images
  • Lightweight and portable for day-long use

4. Wingspan Optics PS-83201

(Good Compact Binoculars for Birdwatching)

Wingspan Optics PS-83201
  • Superior 8x32mm magnification for clear images
  • An excellent angle of view of 362 ft/1000 yds
  • Superior BaK4 glass prism for vivid images
  • Comes with plenty of accessories

5. Nikon Trailblazer 8217

(Best Compact Binoculars for Astronomy)

Nikon Trailblazer 8217
  • A large angle of view of 429 ft/1000 yds
  • BaK4 glass prism for high-resolution views
  • Waterproof and fog-proof for harsh conditions
  • Lightweight and fatigue-free at 0.97 pounds

6. Bushnell BN138005

(Easy to Use Compact Binoculars)

Bushnell BN138005
  • Easy-to-use features
  • Superior BaK4 glass prisms for crisp images
  • Waterproof and fog-free
  • Lightweight and strain-free at 0.75 pounds

7. G4Free 4331882450

(Great Compact Binoculars for Concerts)

G4Free 4331882450
  • Great 12x25 magnification for concert viewing
  • The moderate angle of view for retention of image quality
  • Premium BaK4 glass prism for superior image quality
  • Magnesium body for elegance and durability

8. Occer 888635

(Good Compact Binoculars Low-Light Sightseeing)

Occer 888635
  • Low-light night vision feature
  • Premium BaK4 glass prism for accurate color reproduction
  • Superior 12x25mm magnification and optimal angle of view
  • Life waterproofing

9. Leica Ultravid 40252

(Premium Compact Binoculars)

Leica Ultravid 40252
  • Premium prism with P40 phase-correcting coating and HighLux-System HLS
  • A wide and comfortable angle of view of 341 ft/100 yds
  • HDC multi-coating and AquaDura on outer lenses
  • Lightweight and comfortable at 0.53 pounds

10. Zeiss B018JRGUR2-P

(Pocket Compact Binoculars)

Zeiss B018JRGUR2-P
  • Superior magnification of 10x25mm
  • Premium ED glass lenses with Hydrophobic ZEISS MC
  • Water-resistant and weatherproof
  • Compact and lightweight at 0.68 pounds

1. Celestron 71330 – Best Compact Binoculars for Intermediate Users

Celestron 71330
  • Magnification: 8x32mm
  • Field of view: 388 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 1.25 pounds

Celestron 71330 are top-rated compact binoculars recommended for intermediate users because they are feature-packed and affordable.

The binoculars boast of a superior magnification of 8x with a 32-millimeter objective lens diameter. This magnification brings all the action closer to you with excellent clarity.

They have a wide field of view of 388 feet at 1000 yards, which rivals even more expensive models. They also feature the multi-coated BaK4 prism glass for bright and sharp images.

Speaking of cost, these binoculars is reasonably-priced so that bird enthusiasts and outdoor lovers can enjoy their benefits.

The binoculars have a rugged waterproof design, which can withstand harsh weather conditions that threaten to interrupt your outdoor adventures.

We noted that the Celestron 71330’s weight of 1.25 pounds is on the higher range compared to other rival models, many of which weigh less than 1 pound.

Pros:

  • Excellent magnification
  • Wide field of view
  • Multi-coated prism glass for sharp images
  • Waterproof and rugged design

Cons:

  • Can feel slightly heavy around the neck

2. Nikon 7548 – Best Compact Binoculars for Professionals

Nikon 7548
  • Magnification: 8x42mm
  • Field of view: 330 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 1.3 pounds

If you’re a professional hunter, birder, plane spotter, or outdoor adventurer, Nikon 7548 are the best binoculars for you because of their heavy-duty build quality and excellent features.

The binoculars are fog-proof, waterproof, and suitable for all types of terrain. You also get a superior magnification of 8x42mm and a significantly wide field of view of 330 feet at 1000 yards for easy subject spotting.

All the lenses have dielectric high-reflective multi-layer prism coatings, which enhance the accuracy of color reproduction while producing high-quality images.

They come with extra-low dispersion (ED) glass elements, which work to enhance the color and brightness of all the things you’re viewing.

The Nikon 7548 binoculars do, however, come at a very steep price that may lock out many potential buyers on a budget.

The binoculars may also feel heavy around the neck especially during day-long use given they weigh 1.3 pounds.

Pros:

  • Fog-proof, waterproof, and suitable for all kinds of terrain
  • Superior magnification and wide angle of view
  • Multi-layer prism coatings on lenses for enhanced color reproduction
  • Extra-low dispersion (ED) glass elements for enhanced brightness and color

Cons:

  • May feel heavy around the neck with extended use
  • Very expensive

3. Bushnell Powerview – Best Budget Compact Binoculars

Bushnell Powerview
  • Magnification: 8x21mm
  • Field of view: 378 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 0.44 pounds

Bushnell Powerview are the best binoculars for people on a budget. They are especially ideal for beginners just getting started with outdoor activities such as hunting and their related gear.

The binoculars may have a low price, but they are rich in features such as the very wide angle of view of 378 feet at 1000 yards. This feature combines well with an 8x21mm magnification for easy subject spotting.

You also get fully-coated lenses with this model for brighter and vivid images.

In addition to the low cost, these binoculars weigh only 0.44 pounds. You can move around all day when they are around your neck, or hands, without even noticing them.

On the downside, the While Bushnell are neither waterproof nor fog-proof. They also use the BK-7 prism glass, which is considered inferior to the BaK4 one.

Pros:

  • Reasonably-priced and very affordable
  • Wide coverage with 378 ft/1000 yds angle of view
  • Fully-coated lenses for vivid and bright images
  • Lightweight and portable for day-long use

Cons:

  • Lacks waterproofing and fog-proofing
  • Uses less powerful BK-7 prism glass

4. Wingspan Optics PS-83201 – Good Compact Binoculars for Birdwatching

Wingspan Optics PS-83201
  • Magnification: 8x32mm
  • Field of view: 362 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 0.95 pounds

Wingspan Optics PS-83201 are good compact binoculars for bird watching because they have superior magnification, a wide angle of view, and are lightweight.

These binoculars have a greater magnification than many other models in the market. Their 8x32mm magnification allows the binoculars to capture more light for bright, crisp, and clear images.

They also have an excellent angle of view of 362 feet at 100 yards for wide coverage and easy spotting of birds. At only 0.95 pounds, they are lightweight and easy to carry around.

The type of prism glass used in these binoculars is BaK4, which is superior to other types and allows your binoculars to capture vivid images, and to reproduce colors more accurately.

You also get some handy accessories including a neck strap, eyepiece and lens protection covers, nylon mesh carrying case, and a non-abrasive microfiber lens cleaning cloth.

A possible downside with the Wingspan Optics PS-83201 is that it takes a bit of effort to get a handle on the focus, but once it is locked, the binoculars do an excellent job.

Pros:

  • Superior magnification for clear images
  • An excellent angle of view
  • Superior glass prism for vivid images
  • Comes with plenty of accessories

Cons:

  • Takes some effort to get focus right

5. Nikon Trailblazer 8217 – Best Compact Binoculars for Astronomy

Nikon Trailblazer 8217
  • Magnification: 8x25mm
  • Field of view: 429 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 0.97 pounds

Nikon Trailblazer 8217 are the best compact binoculars for astronomy because of their superior angle of view.

The binoculars have an angle of view of 429 feet at 100 yards, which is the widest of all the models on our list. It makes them ideal for activities such as stargazing because you can view a very wide area through it.

They also create extra-high-resolution images using its premium high-index BaK4 roof prisms. Their optics are also fully multi-coated for maximum light transmission, brighter view, and improved contrast.

You can use these binoculars in a variety of harsh conditions because they are waterproof, fog-proof, and has a rubber-armored body for their protection.

At 0.97 pounds, they are considerably lightweight and won’t cause any strain of fatigue on your neck as you pursue your outdoor adventures.

We did note, however, that the Nikon Trailblazer 8217’s eye relief is not the most convenient, especially for glass wearers.

Pros:

  • A large angle of view for astronomy
  • Superior glass prism for high-resolution views
  • Waterproof and fog-proof for harsh conditions
  • Lightweight and fatigue-free

Cons:

  • Eye relief may be inconvenient for glass wearers

6. Bushnell BN138005 – Easy-to-Use Compact Binoculars

Bushnell BN138005
  • Magnification: 8x25mm
  • Field of view: 374 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 0.75 pounds

Bushnell BN138005 are easy-to-use compact binoculars, which have simple and straightforward features that all levels of users, including kids, can operate.

The binoculars feature a large center-focus knob for easy adjustments, twist-up eyecups, and a longer eye relief for comfort and ease of use.

You also get BaK4 prisms and multi-coated optics offer crisp clear images with these binoculars. Don’t be afraid to use them in harsh conditions because they are 100% waterproof. The gear is O-ring sealed and nitrogen-purged and fog resistance.

They are also lightweight at 0.75 pounds and can be used for the entire day around the neck or in your hands without causing fatigue or strain.

We noted that Bushnell BN138005’s brightness is noticeably lower than that of premium-lens binoculars such as the Nikon Trailblazer.

Pros:

  • Easy-to-use features
  • Superior glass prisms for crisp images
  • Waterproof and fog-free
  • Lightweight and strain-free

Cons:

  • Low brightness in some viewing occasions

7. G4Free 4331882450 – Great Compact Binoculars for Concerts

G4Free 4331882450
  • Magnification: 12x25mm
  • Field of view: 273 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 0.75 pounds

If you’re looking for lightweight, compact and high-resolution binoculars to carry to the concerts you attend, then G4Free 4331882450 is the ideal pick for you.

With a magnification of 12x25mm, these binoculars achieve superior magnification for distant objects. Its angle of view is not so wide to prevent image distortion. They are enough to cover the full width of a concert stage so that you can capture all the action.

They feature a premium BaK4 glass prism, which reflects 100% of the light to maintain great image quality.

These binoculars’ body is made of magnesium and has a hand-figured polishing for elegance and durability. Therefore, when not attending concerts, you can also use them for hunting, sailing, birdwatching, hiking, and many more activities.

The G4Free 4331882450 are not fog-resistant so you should take caution to avoid using them in such conditions.

Pros:

  • Great magnification for concert viewing
  • A moderate angle of view for retention of image quality
  • Premium glass prism for superior image quality
  • Magnesium body for elegance and durability

Cons:

  • Not fog-resistant

8. Occer 888635 – Good Compact Binoculars Low-Light Sightseeing

Occer 888635
  • Magnification: 12x25mm
  • Field of view: 273 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 0.86 pounds

Occer 888635 are good compact binoculars for low-light sightseeing because they have a low-light night vision feature.

To further enhance their ability to view clear images at night, the binoculars has BaK4 prism with its objective lens having an FMC multilayer broadband green film, which improves real color reproduction.

You also get superior 12x magnification with a 25mm objective lens. Their field of view of 273 feet at 1000 yards is not so wide and thus prevents image distortion while enhancing quality.

They are life waterproof, which means they can resist small water droplets, but are not suitable for use in heavy rain.

Occer 888635 are great for use in low-light conditions, but are not frog-proof, and their waterproofing is limited.

Pros:

  • Low-light night vision feature
  • Premium glass prism for accurate color reproduction
  • Superior magnification and optimal angle of view
  • Life waterproofing

Cons:

  • Not fog-proof

9. Leica Ultravid 40252 – Premium Compact Binoculars

Leica Ultravid 40252
  • Magnification: 8x20mm
  • Field of view: 341 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 0.53 pounds

For outdoor enthusiasts, hikers, travelers, sailors, hunters, and birdwatchers who desire high-end compact binoculars made of premium features, Leica Ultravid 40252 are the right pick for you.

Their roof prism boasts of a P40 phase-correcting coating and the proprietary HighLux-System HLS, making these binoculars’ optics some of the most premium and superior in the market.

You get a wide and comfortable angle of view of 341 feet at 100 yards for easy spotting of distant objects.

These binoculars promise a higher level of mechanical and optical performance compared to their peers. Their outer lenses have HDC multi-coating and AquaDura for sharp, clear and high-resolution images.

At 0.53 pounds, these binoculars are some of the lightest in the market and will not strain your neck or hand even with day-long use.

The high-quality features of Leica Ultravid 40252 compact binoculars do come at a steep price, which may lock out many potential buyers on a budget.

Pros:

  • Premium optics for superior sharpness, brightness, and image resolution
  • A wide and comfortable angle of view
  • High mechanical and optical performance
  • Lightweight, comfortable, and strain-free

Cons:

  • Very expensive

10. Zeiss B018JRGUR2-P – Pocket Compact Binoculars

Zeiss B018JRGUR2-P
  • Magnification: 10x25mm
  • Field of view: 318 feet at 1000 yards
  • Weight: 0.68 pounds

The Zeiss B018JRGUR2-P are a great choice for those looking for compact binoculars to carry in the pocket.

At 0.68 pounds, these binoculars are small, lightweight and comfortable to carry around even in your pocket.

The binoculars have a great magnification of 10x25mm, for spotting distant objects during sightseeing, hunting, hiking, birdwatching, and many other outdoor activities. They also come with ZEISS Terra ED lenses, which have Hydrophobic ZEISS MC for image precision.

These binoculars are also waterproof and weatherproof. They can operate in a temperature range of -4°F to 145°F. You can use them for almost all seasons.

It’s worth noting that the Zeiss B018JRGUR2-P compact binoculars are very expensive and may not appeal to buyers on a budget.

Pros:

  • Compact and lightweight at 0.68 pounds
  • Superior magnification of 10x25mm
  • Premium ED glass lenses with Hydrophobic ZEISS MC
  • Water-resistant and weatherproof

Cons:

  • Very expensive

How to Buy the Best Compact Binocular

How to Buy the Best Compact Binocular

1. Magnification

The magnification of all binoculars is represented using a pair of numbers, such as 8x22mm. The first number, including the ‘x’, stands for magnification power. This number represents the degree of object magnification.

For example, an 8x binoculars makes an object appear about 8 times larger than then its size when viewed with the naked eye. Most binoculars will have magnification in the range of 7x to 12x, which is ideal for all your outdoor activities.

The second number, which is one of the most important binoculars specifications, represents the objective lens’ diameter in millimeters. In our earlier number, the objective lens would have a diameter of 22mm.

Binoculars with larger objective lenses gather light more easily than those with smaller lenses. With more light coming into the binoculars, you get brighter and high-contrast images, with good color reproduction.

2. Field of view

The standard adopted by many manufacturers to represent a binoculars field of view if width in feet per 1000 yards.

For example, your binoculars may have a 300 ft/1000 yds, which means, they can view an area with a width of 300 feet along the length of 1000 yards. The area can be land or sky.

Binoculars with wide fields of view are ideal for activities such as astronomy because you can view more sky compared to those with narrower fields.

It’s worth noting that very wide fields of view are not always the best because, beyond a certain point, images may show signs of distortion.

3. Lens

When it comes to binoculars’ lenses, we consider the type of glass used to make them. You may have come across terms such as BK-7, BaK4, and ED glass, which are the most common with binoculars.

BK-7 is a low-end glass that makes prisms common in budget binoculars. It tends to suffer from chromatic aberration, which can cause images to be blurry even when in focus. You can avoid this glass if you want binoculars for professional use.

BaK4 glass is more superior to BK-7. It is used to make high-quality binocular optics because of its low refractive index and resistance to a variety of environmental and chemical conditions.

You will find high-end and pricey binoculars having extra-low dispersion (ED) glass for clear and bright images. This type of binoculars is ideal for professionals.

4. Weight

The weight of your binoculars is an important consideration because the gadget is likely going to be hanging around your neck throughout your outdoor adventure.

You want binoculars that are light enough that you barely notice its weight. Luckily, many of the models we reviewed weigh less than 1 pound. Some weigh as little as 0.4 pounds.

Such binoculars will be easy to carry around both in the hand and around your neck.

But don’t be quick to disregard some of the heavy ones because it's possible their extra weight is from high-quality glass and waterproofing materials, which make the binoculars ideal for extreme weather and terrain. 

5. Waterproof/Fog-proof

Binoculars with waterproofing should be a top priority because it is common for many outdoor activities such as hunting, hiking, and birding to be characterized by wet conditions.

You could be navigating wet conditions, be near a waterfall, or encounter rain during your outdoor adventures, and can’t risk water getting into your precision binoculars.

Fog is also another weather condition that can interfere with the functioning of your binoculars. Fog-proof binoculars are great especially if you begin your activities early in the morning when it is foggy.

6. Comfortable to Wear

Binoculars should be comfortable when worn around the neck so that they don’t strain it or make your entire outdoors experience an uncomfortable one.

A cushioned neck strap will make your binoculars more comfortable, especially if it is one of the heavy ones, or if you’ll be working with it the entire day.

Comfort also extends to the hands, which will be holding the binoculars while in use. Grip features on your binoculars make it easy to hold.

To some extent, comfort will also be influenced by the binoculars’ weight. If the binoculars are heavy, they may be uncomfortable and may require switching between carrying them around your neck, and on your hand.

Conclusion

Having extensively covered the top binoculars in the market and their features, you’re all set to proceed with your purchase.

Remember to check for factors such as weatherproofing and fog-proofing, which are important if you will be working with your binoculars in wet weather conditions.

The quality of glass used to make the prism lenses is equally important. For professional and superior quality images, get binoculars with BaK4 or ED glass.

Also, magnification and field of view are priority factors you should confirm while shopping for binoculars.

Our detailed top 10 compact binoculars reviews and buying guide are a handy companion to help you pick the gadget that best supports your outdoor activities.