Best Hunting Binoculars Under $250

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The search for the best binoculars can be confusing and frustrating. And if you are looking to make an online purchase, you will agree with us that choosing one pair of binoculars out of the wide array of potentially excellent binoculars is never an easy task. It gets even more challenging when you learn that your budget-friendly options offer more or less the same features. And so, with every brand advertising their products and binoculars models as the best, you may end up buying a less than an ideal piece, or worse, you may find that you spent more something when you could have bought its alternatively for significantly less.

How then do you determine which the best hunting binoculars under $250 is and since you are unable to test the binoculars when making purchases online, how do you ensure that you settle for the very best deal?

Well, all that might be a lot for you to carry, but it doesn’t have to be. In this review, we’ll not only list our best options of hunting binoculars fitting your under $250 budget, but we’ll also take a look at some of the features that make excellent hunting binoculars. We will also answer some of the questions you seek clarity on. So, let’s get started!

Comparison of the Best Hunting Binoculars Under $250

Name of Binoculars
Best For
Magnification Power x Obj. Lens
Exit Pupil
Pricing Information
Vortex Optics Diamondback HD Binoculars
Best Overall Hunting Binoculars
10×42
4.2mm
Athlon Optics Midas Roof Prism 8×42 ED Binoculars
Most Versatile Hunting Binoculars
8x 42
5.25mm
Nikon 16002 PROSTAFF 7S 8×42 Binoculars
Best All-Terrain Binoculars
8×42
5.25mm
Bushnell Trophy 10×42 RealtreeXtra Binoculars
Best Camouflaged Binoculars
10×42
4.2mm
Bushnell Legend Ultra HD 10x 42mm Roof Prism Binoculars
Best High-Powered Binoculars
10×42
4.2mm

 

Reviews of the Best Hunting Binoculars Under $250

Here are some of the binoculars options for you.

  1. Vortex Optics Diamondback HD Binoculars – Best Overall Hunting Binoculars

Boasting a high-definition optical system, fully multi-coated optics, and phase-corrected prisms, Vortex Optics Diamondback HD binoculars is one of the best binoculars for hunting.

It is a high magnification wide objective lens binoculars with a 4.2mm exit pupil, meaning that you get to enjoy a great hunting experience, even in low-light conditions. It’s also quite versatile, with the Vortex GlassPak harness allowing for more comfortable hunting and observation in the wild.

Its HD design allows you to access highly rendered views with a minimum level of chromatic aberrations, exceptional color clarity, optimal light transmission, as well as edge-to-edge sharpness, all thanks to the ultra HD glass and the index-matched configuration for the lens. It also boasts XR Plus lens coatings, as well as the dielectric-coated and phase-corrected roof prisms. Thanks to these features, the lenses would be free from oil, scratches, as well as dust. All these functions are enhanced by the ArmorTek lens coating on the lens’s exterior.

The binoculars also make an excellent hunting option thanks to its sturdy and ruggedly-designed housing is O-Ring sealed and argon-filled for fog and moisture protection. They are also durable thanks to the rubber armoring, which ensures a non-slip design.

You may also like its large focusing knob that allows for easy adjustment and focus, even with gloves on. The twist-down eyecups further enhance its comfort and ease for glass wearers. It also features a long 15mm eye relief, a 5’ close focus distance, and an interpupillary range of between 55mm and 73mm.

Pros

  • Durable design
  • Waterproof and fog-proof design
  • ArmorTek exterior coating for the lens for oil repulsion
  • Large focusing wheel
  • Long eye relief for comfort
  • Excellent light transmission thanks to the dielectric coatings and the fully multi-coated prisms
  • Reduced color aberrations
  • True color images
  • Good image clarity

Cons

  • The case strap could be sturdier.
  1. Athlon Optics Midas Roof Prism 8×42 ED Binoculars – Most Versatile Hunting Binoculars

The binoculars is versatile and designed to deliver some of the sharpest, true, and accurate views. It comes with an array of highly functional features, optical technologies, and materials. Some of these features include the dielectric-coated, phase-corrected prisms as well as fully multi-coated optics lenses. The BAK4 Prisms and the extra-low dispersion objective lenses allow for maximum light transmission and the best image clarity. There’s also the large exit pupil, which ensures the best image clarity in low light, which means that you can use the binoculars for hunting at dawn and at dust, and if you are lucky, you could watch the stars with it too.

The protective exterior lens coatings enhance its use outdoors. The glass, lens and their coatings all work together for maximization of light transmissions while preventing image distortions and color fringing. These features further ensure that the image quality is sharp, bright, and accurate high contrast images with an excellent color resolution and color fidelity.

The comfortable exit pupil distance enhances its usage outdoors, while the 65 degrees apparent angle of view ensures a more enjoyable and almost near perfect panoramic experience.

Its use outdoors is further enhanced by the O-ring sealed and argon-filled optical tubes, which give it its waterproofing and anti-fogging resistance. It’s also lightweight and durable thanks to the magnesium-alloyed chassis that enhances its use outdoors. And for ergonomics, it has a slip-resistant armor for easy handling and textured palm-padded accents for improved grip strength.

Pros

  • Durable and lightweight chassis
  • Non-slip and ergonomic exterior with palm accents
  • Rainguard and caps protect the lenses, allowing you to use the binoculars even when it’s drizzling.
  • Great optical performance and maximum light transmission from the E glass and the phase-corrected prism coatings
  • BAK4 proms for quality images
  • Comfortable eye relief
  • Large field of view

Cons

  • The IPD is small for persons with wide-set eyes.
  1. Nikon 16002 PROSTAFF 7S 8×42 Binoculars – Best All-Terrain Binoculars

Fitted with an eco-glass that is free of arsenic and lead, phase-corrected compact roof proms, the highly-reflective prism coatings, not to mention the fully-multicoated optics, this Nikon Prostaff 7S is easily one of the best binoculars for you if you are looking for binoculars you could use when hunting, even in challenging light conditions and in the harshest conditions.

Its optical features allow for the maximum transmission of light, hence limited light interference and internal diffraction for the brightest and high contrast images. These features also ensure highly accurate color renditions. The long exit pupil increases its light gathering ability for improved image views in dusk, dawn, cloudy, and foggy conditions.

You may also like the long eye relief that ensures maximum comfortable viewing with your glasses on, even for hours. Its optical performance is further enhanced by its robust construction for durability and comfort of use. The lightweight polycarbonate resin chassis is durable and resistant to corrosion, and it’s further reinforced with a black-rubberized armor accented with comfortable and texturized palm pads for that non-slip, secure grip. And to prevent fogging, Its optical tubes are nitrogen-filled and o-ring sealed – these features also make it submersible.

Pros

  • Reliable ocular rainguard for the eyecups
  • Lightweight, durable, and resistant to corrosion
  • Ergonomic and comfort rubberized, and armored palm pads
  • Ideal for low-light hunting
  • Phase-corrected prism coatings for maximum light transmission and reduced internal interference
  • Internal light loss for sharper and brighter views
  • Long FOV
  • Easy center focus wheel for enhanced control even with gloves on
  • Great eye dioptric adjustment collar for eye prescription compensation
  • Long 19.5mm eye relief
  • Temperature resistant chassis

Cons

  • Short interpupillary adjustment range
  1. Bushnell Trophy 10×42 RealtreeXtra Binoculars– Best Camouflaged Binoculars

This Bushnell binocular is one of the best fully-featured multi-coated binoculars that’s made of eco-friendly prism glass free of lead and also the BAK-4 prism. It is a heavy-duty piece made for use outdoors. It features a fog-proof and waterproof construction for use outdoors.

It also features a large focusing (center-focus) knob, which allows for easy control even with the gloves on. There also are twist-up eyecups for enhanced usability and comfort, even with glasses on. You may also like the textured, non-slip, and non-glare rubber armor for shock absorption. The 330 degrees field of view further enhances its efficiency and use outdoors.

Pros

  • Comfortable viewing even with glasses on
  • Durable
  • Lightweight
  • Waterproof design for outdoor use
  • Non-glare optical elements
  • Lead-free glass
  • Maximum light transmission

Cons

  • Eye pulling when hunting for long periods
  1. Bushnell Legend Ultra HD 10x 42mm Roof Prism Binoculars – The Most Powerful Binoculars

Last on our list is thus Legend Bushnell binoculars model that offers ultra HD glassing functions. Some of the features of this binoculars include its lightweight magnesium chassis along with the rain guard HD lens coating, all designed to ensure the best performance and outdoor use.

Its optical performance is enhanced by the ED Prime glass as well as the ultrawideband coatings and the HD rainguard that ensures a water-repellent coating of the lens. The wide diameter objective lens ensures maximum light transmission for excellent image quality and clarity. There is also the ultra-low dispersion glass that allows for visible colors, color resolution, and image contrast while eliminating chromatic aberrations, as well as color-fringing.

Pros

  • Waterproof, rugged binoculars housing
  • Optimum protection from the elements
  • Optimum image clarity
  • HD rainguard technology for protection from oil, fog, and water
  • Excellent image quality and clarity
  • Rubberized grip or coating
  • Diopter locking ring
  • Twist-up eyecups
  • Excellent optics
  • Easy center focusing knob.

Cons

  • The protection eye caps can be lost easily.
  • Control knobs could be smoother.

 

Buying Guide for Hunting Binoculars Under $250

The budget might be in the way of you buying a gadget with the most advanced features, but this doesn’t mean that you cannot find binoculars with amazing design and functional features on a budget. Even with the slightly constrained budget, there are several options of binoculars that would fit your needs. Here are the features you need to look out for in your search for the best binoculars.

  • Size

The size of the binoculars is a critical factor that determines how the gadget feels in your hands, the types of hunting you can take it to, and most importantly, the optical elements of the binoculars (that is, the magnification power, and how far/ well you can spot objects).

There are three main binocular sizes – compact, mid-sized, and full-size binoculars. The compact is often the 8×25, or the 10×25 binoculars build for portability. They are lightweight and often fit into pockets, which is why they are the preferred option for hunters, along with hiking enthusiasts and birdwatchers.

The mid-size binoculars include the 7×35 and the 10x32s. These weigh more than the compact ones, and they also offer better light transmission, all thanks to the built in heavy optics. These binoculars are suitable for sports and wildlife hunting.

Lastly, you have the full-size binoculars. These are high-performance binoculars that include the 8x42s and the 10x50s. They boast excellent light transmission qualities and can be used in low-light conditions.  The only issue is that they are heavy, meaning that you may need to mount it on a tripod, especially if hunting for hours.

  • Magnification and Objective Lens Diameter

These are the two critical features that determine the actual power and performance of the binoculars. These two functions are determined by the numbers on the binoculars. An 8×42 binoculars, for example, has an 8X magnification and an objective lens diameter of 42mm. Most hunters choose this binoculars magnification, especially because it offers the best image quality and easy spotting of game, and also, you could hunt under dim conditions because of the wide diameter of the objective lens. The other preferred specification is the 10x42s binoculars that allow for hunting at dawn and dusk.

  • Field of View (FOV)

The FOV is the area in view when looking through the binoculars and without moving it. FOV is measured in feet, and it gives the view of the object standing 1000 yards from your position. Note that higher magnifications result in the reduction of the FOV, and for the best hunting experiences, you’d need a relatively high FOV.

  • Close and Central Focus

The focus elements determine how good your hunting experience will be. For easy adjustment, look for binoculars with the diopter adjustment for easy right focus and viewing. And since most binoculars come with the central focus ring, focusing shouldn’t trouble you.

  • Exit Pupil

Measured in mm, this function represents the level of brightness and the size of the object when you look through the eyepiece. A larger exit pupil means more light and better clarity, especially in low light. For daylight use, an exit pupil of 5mm or below is ideal.

  • Eye Relief

Eye relief is the distance between your eye and the eyepiece. It determines the binoculars’ comfort level, especially if you wear glasses, and you will need binoculars with a long eye relief for easy hunting with your glasses on.

  • Prism System

While binoculars are designed with the older Porro prisms and the modern roof prisms, the best hunting binoculars feature the roof prism systems. Notably, these two prism systems are bulky and lightweight, respectively.

  • Prism Coating

The lens and prism coating is crucial to binoculars and weighs in on the performance of the device. The best prism coatings reduce the reflection of light, increasing the transmission of light while improving the contrast and the brightness of the images. For the best light transmission, get hunting binoculars made with a dielectric coating for the prism.

The lens coating is also important because it determines the total non-reflective layers on the lens. You need more lens layers for improved light transmission to your eyes, hence higher clarity images. Essentially, the best lens coating is the fully multi-coated design.

  • Build and Durability

Look for binoculars with fog-proof and waterproof features, a slip-resistant housing, and a rugged body.

FAQs

Should I buy 10×42 binoculars for hunting?

Yes, the 10x magnification power of the binoculars makes it an ideal option for hunting as it gives you more than adequate viewing for the wild game like elks or deer that could be hiding.

What do the numbers on the binoculars mean?

The numbers represent the magnification power and the diameter of the objective lens, respectively. Together they determine how close the object is magnified while also allowing you to spot game accurately and easily.

Which are the best binoculars for hunting under low light conditions?

Generally, your best options would include any binoculars with a bigger exit pupil size, for example, 5mm and above. The exit pupil is obtained by dividing the diameter of the objective lens by the magnification power. Most 8x42s and 10x42s would work under low light, although 10x50s would offer better clarity in dimmer conditions.

Conclusion

If you are looking for the best hunting binoculars below $250, then the options above might be the best option for you.

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Terrence Miller
Terrence Miller is a hunter by birth, picking it up from a lineage of hunters and will probably hand the skill down to his son. He has been hunting since he was a young boy and has knowledge of both the new and old hunting equipment. This goes to say that the information provided is very reliable and conclusive. Using the hunting rifles and getting the right hunting gear seems to be a challenge for many individuals who want to learn the skill of hunting. And the reason why the information presented by Miller has detailed coverage on the different types of rifles, and rifle scopes. When not in the wild hunting, Miller loves horseback riding.

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