Choosing the right Binoculars

When it comes to making a decision on which binoculars you should buy, there a few factors you should consider:

  • Magnification:

    • The standard magnification configurations are 10x50 and 8x40.

    • However, you do get other configurations like 8x21, 10x21, 7x50, 10x25, 8x42, 7x35, 10x42 and so on.

    • Note that other configurations such as 15x70, 20x80 etc are also available, but we are limiting the discussion to max 10x magnification because anything greater than 10x requires the use of a tripod as the view will be too shaky/ unsteady if we hold them in our hands while viewing through them.

  • Size:

    • Binoculars with relatively smaller objective diameter (such as 10x25, 8x21) are usually smallest sized ones which can fit in your pocket/ palm.

    • Binoculars such as 8x40 are typically considered compact enough to carry easily but at the same time 40mm lens ensures you don't compromise too much on the brightness and quality.

    • Binoculars like the 10x50 usually combine the best of magnification and objective diameter - 10x magnification is the maximum power you can view at comfortably in hand-held mode and gives a steady view while 50mm lens gives excellent light gathering capacity to provide bright views.

  • Usage Purpose:

    • For viewing fast moving objects which are at a distance, binoculars such as 8x40 are best suited. As 8x is slightly lower magnification than 10x, it provides a wider field of view allowing you to keep up with the moving subject while viewing through the binocs. Typically think of Birdwatching, Horse-racing, Car-racing etc for such configurations.

    • For viewing concerts, plays, stage shows, binoculars with low magnification and small objective lens (4x30, 6x30, 8x21) are usually best suited because they are small sized which can easily fit your pocket and the subjects are usually not very far so a high magnification is not necessary.

    • For viewing far-away objects and if size is not a constraint, consider 10x50 binoculars. These are the most popular configuration as it gives you maximum hand-held magnification and light gathering capacity, so they provide sharp bright view and reveal details which are otherwise not visible to naked eye from a distance. Typically for surveillance, wildlife observation, nature views, astronomy and stargazing, 10x50 are most preferred. Please note that although higher magnifications reveal more detail, anything greater than a 10x magnification cannot be comfortably used in handheld mode and will necessarily require a tripod for proper/ stable viewing experience

  • Day Use or Day Night Use:

    • Most binoculars are meant for day-time use - they work as long as there is a lot of light available at the subject's position. However, they may not work during the evenings/ night time as the light available is less, and often times may also get fogged due to lower temperatures during the night hours.

    • Astronomical binoculars, by virtue of having large objective lenses, multiple coatings on the lenses and high reflectivity prisms for the construction, allow you to see things in striking detail in low-light conditions not only in the sky but also on land. As long as there is even a small amount of ambient light (such as during a moon-lit night), the binoculars work very well for use on land such as night-time wildlife observations, low-light surveillance work, etc.

Our Recommendations

Olympus 10x50 DPS

  • Excellent for: Birdwatching, Wildlife, Security/ Surveillance, Camping/ trekking/ sightseeing/ nature, Low-light vision, Astronomy, Stargazing

  • One of the best All-purpose & Day-Night binoculars. Every Astronomer and Nature lover has one!

  • View more details: OLYMPUS 10x50 DPS I Binoculars

Olympus 8x40 DPS

  • Excellent for: Birdwatching, Wildlife, Security/ Surveillance, Camping/ trekking/ sightseeing/ nature

  • Can be used with reasonable performance in: Low-light vision, astronomy, stargazing

  • Portable size & Day-Night binoculars

  • View more details: OLYMPUS 8x40 DPS I Binoculars

10x50 DPSI Binoculars

  • Similar to the Olympus 10x50 DPS but for those who are on a budget

  • Excellent for: Birdwatching, Wildlife, Security/ Surveillance, Camping/ trekking/ sightseeing/ nature, Low-light vision, Astronomy, Stargazing

  • All-purpose & Day-Night binoculars.

  • View more details: 10x50 DPSI Binoculars

8x40 DPSI Binoculars

  • Similar to the Olympus 8x40 DPS but for those who are on a budget

  • Excellent for: Birdwatching, Wildlife, Security/ Surveillance, Camping/ trekking/ sightseeing/ nature

  • Can be used with reasonable performance in: Low-light vision, astronomy, stargazing

  • Portable size & Day-Night binoculars

  • View more details: 8x40 DPSI Binoculars

7x35 or 8x40 Binoculars

  • Good for: Birdwatching, Wildlife, Security/ Surveillance, Camping/ trekking/ sightseeing/ nature

  • Portable size & Day-time use binoculars; Budget-friendly

  • Available in generic make/ different brands

  • View more details: Click here

10x50 Day-use Binoculars

  • Good for: Birdwatching, Wildlife, Security/ Surveillance, Camping/ trekking/ sightseeing/ nature

  • Day-time use binoculars; Budget-friendly

  • Available in generic make/ different brands

  • View more details: Click here