5 Best Binoculars Under $200 of 2019

Binoculars can enhance your vision by magnifying images – you can see the scenes closer through the pair of telescopes. It works because of a system of prisms inside each telescope. Binoculars can be used for various purposes, from viewing scenes, hunting to gazing stars.

To choose a suitable binocular, you have to consider many factors, including your purpose, your vision, your budget, other requirements. With the budget under $200, you already have numerous choices, which can fit many purposes and needs.

Here are the best binoculars under 200 you can buy in 2019:

  • Best Overall: Vortex Optics Crossfire Roof Prism Binoculars
  • Best For Alaska Cruise: Bushnell H2O Waterproof/Fogproof Roof Prism Binocular
  • Best For Astronomers: Celestron 71008 SkyMaster 25x70 Binoculars
  • Best For Eyeglass Wearers: Nikon 7245 Action 10x50 EX Extreme All-Terrain Binocular
  • Most Lightweight: Nikon Trailblazer 8x25 ATB Waterproof Black Binoculars

Best Overall: Vortex Optics Crossfire Roof Prism Binoculars

Vortex Optics Crossfire Roof Prism Binoculars
Vortex Optics Crossfire Roof Prism Binoculars
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Clear views
  • Wide field of view and enhanced depth of field
  • Nitrogen purging and waterproof barrels
  • Suitable for eyeglass wearers

Cons
  • Nothing to complain

For general purposes like hunting, sightseeing or bird watching, I would recommend the Vortex Optics Crossfire. It is lightweight, only 1.46 lbs, and features rubber armoring that offers non-slip grip.
The prisms are 10×42, providing you with 10 times of magnification power and 42-millimeter objective lenses that can gather a lot of light so you can use it in low-light situations. The lenses are fully multi-coated, promoting excellent light transmission and clarity for clearer views, even in later of the day.

Vortex Optics Crossfire has a wide field of view – 325 feet at 1000 yards, 6.2 degrees, and an enhanced depth of field for a better view.

The binoculars are designed to fit eyeglass wearers with twisting eye relief cups, a smooth center focus wheel, and right eye diopter. If you choose to wear eyeglasses, you just need to twist or fold the eyecups down. If you don’t want to wear eyeglasses, you can adjust the focusing for each eye individually using the right eye diopter.

With nitrogen purging and waterproof barrels, you will be ready for all weather conditions.

Vortex Optics Crossfire Roof Prism Binoculars Specifications

Magnification

10x

Field of View (degrees)

6.2 degrees

Field of View (feet @ 1000yds)

325 feet/1000 yards

Prism

10×42

Eye Relief (mm)

15 mm

Weight

1.46 lbs

Highlight Features

Nitrogen purging

Waterproof barrels

Eyecups

Right eye diopter

Verdict

Vortex Optics Crossfire is the best binoculars under 200 for general purpose.

Best For Alaska Cruise: Bushnell H2O Waterproof/Fogproof Roof Prism Binocular

Bushnell H2O Waterproof/Fogproof Roof Prism Binocular
Bushnell H2O Waterproof/Fogproof Roof Prism Binocular
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Affordable
  • Image quality is clear compared to other binoculars of the same price range
  • Lightweight
  • 100% waterproof, fogproof, O ring sealed and nitrogen purging.

Cons
  • Lack of right eye diopter

When you travel to a place as cold as Alaska with rain showers sometimes, you’d better bring along a very tough pair of binoculars. Bushnell H2O would be the choice. This is built-to-last binoculars with extensively tested materials, 100 percent waterproof, O ring sealed and nitrogen purging feature. Bushnell H2O can survive in the most extreme weather. Rubber cover with textures absorbs shocks and provides firm grips for the most intense huntings.

Bushnell H2O’s prism system is much like the Vortex Optics Crossfire – 10x of magnification ability and 42mm of objective lenses. The field of view is a bit narrower – 305 feet/1000 yards (5.8 degrees).

The lenses are made of BaK 4 (Barium Crown Glass) with multi-coated optics that can reflect all the light transmitted in the system for a clearer view, even at later of the day.

With all those great features, Bushnell H2O has a very affordable price. But a big drawback of Bushnell H2O is the lack of right eye diopter. An alternative to the lack, you can use eyecups if you’re an eyeglass wearer.

Bushnell H2O Waterproof/Fogproof Roof Prism Binocular Specifications

Magnification

10x

Field of View (degrees)

5.8 degrees

Field of View (feet @ 1000yds)

305 feet/1000 yards

Prism

10×42

Eye Relief (mm)

17 mm

Weight

1.56 lbs

Highlight Features

100% water proof

Fogproof

O ring sealed and nitrogen purging

Eyecups.

Verdict

Bushnell H2O is a durable and reliable binocular under 200 for extreme weather.

Best For Astronomers: Celestron 71008 SkyMaster 25x70 Binoculars

Celestron 71008 SkyMaster 25x70 Binoculars
Celestron 71008 SkyMaster 25x70 Binoculars
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Can be used by both terrestrial as well as astronomical viewing
  • Sharp and clear view
  • Impressive magnification ability and very large objective lenses
  • Affordable

Cons
  • Narrow field of view
  • Lack of right eye diopter

Celestron 71008 with 25×70 allows you to view at a very long distance, in limited light condition – 25 times of magnification and 70 mm of objective lenses. Enjoy the feeling of stargazing. For better views and more light going through the lenses, Celestron 71008 is made from BaK 4 with multi-coated optics. The long eye relief helps eyeglass wearer more comfortable when viewing.

To offer you a very affordable price, Celestron sacrificed the field of view – only 141 feet/1000 yards, which is quite narrow compared with two binoculars above. And it is quite heavy too – 3.25 lbs.

However, this is still a very desired binoculars as you won’t find any binoculars under 100 that has the magnification power like Celestron 71008.

Celestron 71008 SkyMaster 25×70 Binoculars Specifications

Magnification

25x

Field of View (degrees)

2.7 degrees

Field of View (feet @ 1000yds)

141 feet/1000 yards

Prism

25×70

Eye Relief (mm)

13 mm

Weight

3.25 lbs

Highlight Features

25×70 lenses

Eyecups

Water proof

Verdict

Celestron 71008 is the most affordable binoculars for astronomical object viewing.

Best For Eyeglass Wearers: Nikon 7245 Action 10x50 EX Extreme All-Terrain Binocular

Nikon 7245 Action 10x50 EX Extreme All-Terrain Binocular
Nikon 7245 Action 10x50 EX Extreme All-Terrain Binocular
9Outstanding
Pros
  • High quality build
  • Larger objective lenses
  • Offers a wide field of view
  • Clear and sharp view
  • Waterproof, fogproof, and shockproof

Cons
  • Lack of right eye diopter

Nikon 7245 has a standard magnification power for a multi-purpose pair of binoculars, but a bit wider objective lenses – 50mm vs. 40mm. This allows more light goes through the lens system, and you will be able to see in dark environments, like viewing the sky at night. Bright, multi-coated optics for even better views.

The binoculars have a wide field of view – 6.5 degrees/341 feet at 1000 yards, providing you with broader views and fast-tracking ability the prey when hunting.

Nikon 7245 has rugged waterproof, fog-proof construction, being O-ring sealed and nitrogen-filled for shockproof. It is very handy and lightweight – about 2.24 lbs, even being featured with an all-metal framework.

Nikon 7245 is comfortable for eyeglass wearers with turn-and-slide rubber eyecups and 17.2 mm of eye relief. However, it does not have a right-eye diopter for each eye focus adjustment.

Nikon 7245 Action 10×50 EX Extreme All-Terrain Binocular Specifications

Magnification

10x

Field of View (degrees)

6.5 degrees

Field of View (feet @ 1000yds)

341 feet/1000 yards

Prism

10×50

Eye Relief (mm)

17.2 mm

Weight

2.24 lbs

Highlight Features

10×50 prism

Waterproof

Fogproof

Shookproof

Verdict

Nikon 7245 is high-quality binoculars under 200 for eyeglass wearers.

Most Lightweight: Nikon Trailblazer 8x25 ATB Waterproof Black Binoculars

Nikon Trailblazer 8x25 ATB Waterproof Black Binoculars
Nikon Trailblazer 8x25 ATB Waterproof Black Binoculars
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Super lightweight
  • Eco-glass without the use of arsenic or lead
  • Offers a wide field of view
  • Rubber-armored coating, fully waterproof/fog proof, nitrogen-filled and O-ring sealed

Cons
  • Small objective lenses
  • Low magnification ability

With only 0.97 lb, Nikon Trailblazer is Most Lightweight binoculars in this list. It fit completely into your palm, and you can easily put it into your pocket to carry around. Nikon Trailblazer is really a pair of binoculars designed for sightseeing as the field of view is massive – 429 feet at 1000 yards, you can view all the landscape with the binoculars.

The lenses are coated with multiple layers of anti-reflective compounds. It has a knob to fast-adjust the range of focus. Another big con of Nikon Trailblazer is the affordable price.

However, Nikon Trailblazer’s performance is quite limited. It has only 8 times of magnification power, and the objective lenses are only 25 mm in diameter. This means you can only view near landscapes and cannot use it in too-dark environments.

Nikon Trailblazer is also equipped with basic protective features: rubber-armored coating, fully waterproof/fog proof, nitrogen-filled and O-ring sealed.

Nikon Trailblazer 8×25 ATB Waterproof Black Binoculars Specifications

Magnification

8x

Field of View (degrees)

8.2 degrees

Field of View (feet @ 1000yds)

429 feet/1000 yards

Prism

8 x 25

Eye Relief (mm)

10 mm

Weight

0.97 lb

Highlight Features

Rubber-armored coating

Fully waterproof/fog proof

Nitrogen-filled and O-ring sealed

Verdict

Nikon Trailblazer is convenient binoculars that will fit perfectly into your pocket.

How To Choose The Best Binoculars Under 200?

First, you need to understand some important specs of a binocular.

  • ’10×50′, ’25×70′, ‘8×25’ – what these numbers mean? The first number refers to the magnification power, for example, 10 means that you’ll the image 10 times closer through the binoculars. The latter number refers to the diameter of the objective lenses – the bigger it is, the more light that can go through the lenses, and the brighter the image is.
  • Field of View – degrees and feet: It is the maximum distance from left to right of the scene that you can see at 1000 yards through the binoculars. It can be measured by degrees, which is the same as when measured by feet.
  • Eye relief: It is the longest distance from the last surface of the binoculars to the user’s eyes. Within this distance, you can get the full viewing angle.
  • Additional Features: Eyecups (for more comfortable), Right eye diopter (for near/far-sighted people), Waterproof and shockproof.

Base on your purpose and personal preferences to determine suitable ranges of specs, and find the binoculars have specs fit in these ranges.

Which Brands Make The Best Binoculars Under 200?

Bushnell

  • With more than 65 years in the sports optics industry, Bushnell has built its reputation as the provider of the highest quality, most reliable and affordable sports optics products on the market.
  • They have a wide range of optics sports products, from binoculars, riflescopes, red dots, to night vision, cameras, and telescopes. They always integrate new technology and innovation to their products to satisfy the savviest customers.

Celestron

  • Another traditional telescope maker, Celestron was founded in 1960 and now has become one of the leaders in the market. They are well-known for their patented, one-of-a-kind innovations. They have some of the most popular models when it comes to astronomical telescopes.

Nikon

  • No need to introduce Nikon since they are one of the biggest optics and imaging brands in the world. They headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, and make from binoculars, lenses, to cameras, even microscopes and rifle scopes. You are assured of the best quality when it comes to Nikkon’s products.

FAQs

Isn't it true that the larger the magnification, the better the binoculars?

It is not true. Too high magnification binoculars (above 15x) are not suitable for some purposes like hunting. A good pair of binoculars is the one that has enough magnification power that fits your initial purpose.

Can I use my binoculars to observe the moon and planets?

Yes. But the binoculars should have a high magnification - at least 20x, and big objective lenses to obtain more light.

Why does only one eyepiece can be adjusted for my binoculars?

It is called the right eye diopter. It is used to adjust the focusing for the right eye when your eyes have different sights (farsighted people or nearsighted people).

What is the best way to clean binoculars?

It is a bad idea to rub the lenses as the dust can scratch the glass. First, you need to remove all the dust from the lenses using a lens cleaning brush. You can moisten the tip with water or lens cleaning solution. Then, you can gently rub the lenses with a soft cloth (nonwovens is recommended).

Will I need to use a tripod with my new binocular?

For low magnification binoculars, you don’t need to use a tripod. But when using a high magnification pair (20x), if the binocular doesn’t have image stabilization, you’ll need a tripod.

Conclusion

$200 is a small number for a pair of binoculars, but you can still find a very good one. My list above has some of the best binoculars under $200 on the market.

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