5 Great Choices For Mid Priced Binoculars For Birding
Mid-Priced Binoculars For Birding Comparison Table
Mid-Priced Binoculars For Birding
We start this category off with the Zeiss Terra ED 8×42. The Zeiss Terra ED is our choice for the best value in the category. The binoculars are compact in design and light, which makes them comfortable and easy to use in the field. For the lenses, Zeiss uses SCHOTT ED glass with an MC Coating, which is exceptional, giving bright and vivid images while bird watching.
You’ll enjoy the wide fields of view. The binoculars have a close focus of 5.25 feet. This close focus allows you to see details and characteristics you could not see otherwise. We liked the grip and design of the body for steady viewing. Changing the focus is smooth, and they are incredibly light at just 10.9 ounces. You won’t have to worry about fatigue using these binoculars. The eyecups are slightly slanted, giving them a lovely feel when using.
- 88% LIGHT TRANSMISSION - SCHOTT ED glass with a hydrophobic multi-coating provides optical clarity and precision in all situations
- COMFORTABLE, FAST FOCUSING - The large, smooth and easy-to-grip focus wheel makes focusing particularly easy and, most of all, quick on a ZEISS Terra ED
- ZEISS T* COATING - a guarantee of the brilliant, high-contrast images which you will experience above all in adverse light conditions and in the twilight
- COMPACT, LIGHT AND ROBUST - With its waterproof casing reinforced with glass fibers, Terra ED bino satisfies the high standards of nature lovers. Lightweight, easy to fit into any bag and nearly indestructible, ZEISS Terra ED is the perfect companion
- A CLEAR VIEW, WHATEVER THE WEATHER – Features a LotuTec lens coating that enables a clear and unhindered view in all weather conditions
The Nikon Monarch 7 8×42 ATB is the most popular set of binoculars in this category. The price point is good, and not that far from the most budget-friendly pair. While this pair was not chosen as the top pair of binoculars for the category, or the most budget-friendly pair in the category, I would still highly consider this pair of binoculars.
Nikon has an excellent optical system for the ED glass to give you a clear and bright image. You experience a wide field of view that is just right for bird watching. Nikon uses a dielectric multilayer prism coating, which gives a nice, even light transmittance. The result is a bright clear high contrast image where the colors are a true match to the naked eye.
The body of the binoculars is a durable rubber-armored coating. It is just rough enough to prevent slipping, but still comfortable to the touch. The central focus knob is medium in size, so it fits well with the rest of the body, and the focusing wheel is smooth when you turn it.
One of the features we liked about the eyecups is the adjustable click-stop design. Something to note, the close focus capability is 8.2 feet, which is a bit further than some of the other models we compared the Nikon to. It is easy to see why these binoculars are so popular with bird watchers.
- The MONARCH 7 8x42 provides an exceptionally wide field of view that makes it easy to find your subject.
- Dielectric High-Reflective Multilayer Prism Coatings are applied to all lenses and prism coatings to provide high-contrast images and accurate color reproduction.
- Thanks to a durable rubber armored coating, the MONARCH 7 is comfortable to hold and rugged enough to stand up to any conditions.
- Extra-low dispersion glass enhances brightness and color fidelity
- Roof prisms with phase-correction preserve clarity and detail
- Highly reflective dielectric prism coating renders
- Anti-reflective multicoated lens system
- Nitrogen-filled housing for fog proof and waterproof performance
The Vortex Viper HD 8×42 is our second most expensive pair of binoculars in our Mid-Range Category. Although the Vortex Viper is only about $40 more than our best value pair, so well within budget. I am a fan of the green color on the rubberized body, which gives it an attractive outdoor look and feel. They offer a lifetime warranty, promising that if you ever have a problem, regardless of what caused it, they WILL take care of you. I appreciate warranties like that and the companies that stand behind them. They feel compact, even though they are a full-sized binocular.
The Vortex Viper HD 8×42 comes with a premium extra-low dispersion glass, giving excellent resolution, beautiful color fidelity, and high-definition images. Increased light transmission happens as a result of their multiple anti-reflective coatings on all air to glass surfaces. Vortex also applies a dielectric coating in multiple layers on the prism. This coating provides bright, clear images that are true to color. The Viper HD has a phase correction coating on the roof prism design, enhancing the resolution and contrast.
We like the size of the Vortex Viper HD. They are pretty light at 24.5 ounces, and only 4.9 inches in width. The total height comes in at 5.6 inches, which is an appropriate length for an 8×42. Water and fog are not an issue as they come filled with Argon Gas and sealed with o rings. The diopter adjustment stands out as an impressive feature on the Vortex binoculars. This control knob design lets you compensate for the difference between your right eye and left eye, giving the most precise personalized focus. We were impressed by this. When you look at the reviews and comments on the Vortex Optics website, the users are impressed and pleased with them.
- 8x magnification and 42mm objective lenses, the 2018 Viper HD is a high-end, full-size yet compact binocular that is suited for any hunt. An easy-to-grip, rubber armored chasis with perfectly placed thumb indents provides superior ergonomics.
- A high density optical system delivers exeptional resolution and edge to edge clarity. XR anti-relfective lens coatings give bright, full views even in low light situations.
- A locking, right-eye diopter tailors each barrels' focus to your eyes. The smooth, center focus wheel provides fine focus control and quick sharp views. Twist-up eyecups rest comfortably against the face and provide customized eye relief.
- Argon purging and o-ring seals provide a lifetime of waterproof and fogproof performance. Ultra-hard, scratch resistant armortek protects the exterior lenses from scratches, oil, and dirt.
- In the field, you should have no trouble reaching them at a moment’s notice with the included GlassPak Chest Harness providing comfortable, protected, strain-free, all-day carry.Field of View:409 feet @ 1000 yd / 135.8 m @ 1000 m
Winner: Our Pick Mid-Priced Binoculars for Birding
The Leica 8X42 Trinovid HD is our top pick for the mid-range category. One thing to take into consideration is the price of the Trinovid when comparing to the others in the group. They are at the high-end of the price range and cost several hundred dollars more. The quality of these binoculars certainly earns it the top pick.
The Leica brand has arguably been one of the finest for many years, and they do not disappoint with these binoculars. With the roof prism design, they are compact and light, fitting just right. When you hold the Tinovid HD, you feel the ruggedness and quality design, and yet they only weigh 26 oz. And when you raise them to your eyes and look through them, you understand the high regard with the compelling clarity and sharp views.
The Leica 8×42 Trinovid HD has a 372-foot field of view, falling right in line with this class. When it comes to eye relief, they sport a 15 mm design, making them comfortable for the bird watcher. The prisms are construction with phase-coated Bak4 glass, and the lenses are fully multicoated, reducing the glare and increasing the quality of the view. At this level, you expect a thoroughly waterproof and fog proof system, which is what the Leica delivers. You end up with a beautiful, detail-rich, and high-contrast image that is a joy to use in your outdoor adventures.
Some other things we observed were the adjustable eyecups that twist to extend or retract. They turn and sit into a stable position, which will hold, so you do not have to worry about them coming out of place. There is a diopter adjusting wheel that turns freely and efficiently as a simple ring on the right barrel to help adjust for any difference between your left and right eyes.
We think you will love the Trinovid HD 8×42. While the price seems high compared to the other binoculars in this mid-range category, you will enjoy a lifetime of birding with this high quality, and for much less than the top of the line binoculars that easily exceed $2000 per pair.
- Crafted from the highest quality material
- Perfect for outdoor and even indoor use
- Made in Portugal
The Vanguard Endeavor ED IV 8×42 is the lowest-priced model for the mid-range binoculars we reviewed, making them very attractive for someone who is cost-conscious. If you enjoy being outdoors on an adventure, grab a pair of the Vanguard Endeavor ED IV to go with you, especially considering they won’t break the bank. They feature a HOYA brand Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass with an SK-15 Prism. The roof prism design allows for a comfortable fit when viewing birds. The housing is durable and lightweight magnesium with a textured grip to help prevent slipping when in use. The field of view at 1000 yards is 377 feet, which is a good point for bird watching. The near focus comes in at just under 6 feet (5.9).
The grip wheel is a soft rubber knob, making it easy to turn and bring into focus. The Vanguard Endeavor EDI IV 8×42 comes in a black matte finish with a carrying strap. They are Nitrogengen flushed and sealed with O-rings, making them fog-proof and water-proof. They weigh in at 27.73 ounces, which makes them slightly heavier, by a few ounces, to some of the other models in the category. The brightness and clarity are more than satisfactory. The twist eyecups have three positions to adjust, making for comfortable viewing. Some of the other models we evaluated had five positions, for more granular control, but three will get the job done. If you are cost-conscious but want to be a step up from the budget or entry-level categories, this pair of binoculars make a good choice.
- SK-15 prisms allow for vivid detail and stunning image quality and premium HOYA ED glass provides a true color viewing experience
- New ergonomic open-bridge design ensures easy grip in all weather and advanced multi guard coatings provide superb light transmission
- Relocated center locking diopter for easy adjustment with soft grip center focusing wheel & 3 stage twist eye cups for comfortable viewing
- Strong & lightweight magnesium housing is engineered for ultimate protection & performance and nitrogen purged & O-ring sealed to provide 100% fog proof & waterproof protection
- Magnification: 8x, Objective Lens Diameter: 42mm, Field of View: 377 ft. /1000 yards, View angle: 6. 5 degrees, Near focus: 5. 9 feet, Eye relief: 19 mm, Weight: 27. 7 ounces