A Complete Buying Guide To Finding The Best Bird Watching Binoculars Under $100

Home » Accessories » Birdwatching Binoculars Under $100

When I first got into birding, I wanted to find the best bird watching binoculars under $100. I did a lot of research and checked out a bunch of birding binoculars in the under $100 price point.

There were a few things I took into consideration such as…

  • Did I want them easily accessible, for instance, was I going to keep them in the car for any time I spotted an interesting bird?
  • Or, were these going to be in a single location, like my favorite birding room at home?
  • How heavy are they going to be?
  • How easy to focus are they?
  • How strong of a magnification power would they have?

I found that identifying the best bird watching binoculars under $100 for my birding goals proved to be a bit tricky.

In this article, I lay out the top 7 binoculars that I found, taking into consideration:

  • Durability
  • Magnification
  • Weight
  • Field of view
  • Amount of light allowed to pass

Let’s get on with it, shall we?…

Top 7 Best Sellers: Best Bird Watching Binoculars Under $100

SaleBirdInformer BESTSELLER # 1
12x42 Binoculars for Adults with Universal Phone Adapter - Super Bright and Large View Binoculars for Bird Watching, Hunting, Sports (Waterproof)
  • 【18mm Large Eyepiece Binoculars, Larger Image, Clearer Details】2.25 times the image size of 12mm eyepiece (e.g. 10x25, 12x25, 10x21 binoculars), 1.28 times of 16mm eyepiece (e.g. Ordinary 10x42, 12x42 binoculars). Large eyepiece binoculars make full use of 12x magnification, deliver larger image, ensure clearer details
  • 【16.5mm Big BAK4 Prism Lens Binoculars, Super Bright, Crisp View】Collect 32% more light than 12.5mm prism lens (e.g. 10x25, 12x25, 10x21 binoculars), 13.7% of 14.5mm prism lens (e.g. Ordinary 10x42, 12x42 binoculars). 16.5mm Prism lens take 100% advantage of 42mm objective lens, collect more lights, deliver brighter view
  • 【Powerful 12x42 Binoculars for Adults with only 1.25lbs.】With only 560g weight, Adasion 12x42mm binoculars deliver 367ft/1000yds large field of view. Perfect binoculars for bird watching, hunting, sports events. Binoculars with adjustable eye cups, suitable for glasses wearers.
  • 【Binoculars with New Phone Adapter, Enjoy Photographing】Quick alignment, compatible with phone case, portable and stable. Suitable for iPhone X, 8P, 8, 7P, 7, 6, 6s, 6P, 5, 5s, Samsung GALAXY S8, S7, S6, S6 Edge, S5, Note, Huawei, LG, HTC, Sony, Etc.
  • 【Quality Binoculars, Order without Risk】With 100% thorough Quality Control, Adasion provides High Quality Binoculars. Contact us if you encounter any issues, we will solve it in 24 hours.
SaleBirdInformer BESTSELLER # 2
Binoculars for Adults and Kids, 10x25 Compact Binoculars for Bird Watching, Theater and Concerts, Hunting and Sport Games
  • 10 magnification with 25mm objective lens provides high definition without a color-changed or blurred image. The 10 magnification boasts a viewing field of 362ft at 1000 yds, so you'll be able to observe a great deal without actually adjusting their position.
  • Fully multi-coated optics provide for a brighter view and sharp images. All glass surfaces have multiple coatings, resulting in light transmission of 96.48% for bright, sharp and contrast images, and non-chromatic aberration. Based on this these binoculars also provide low light night vision.
  • Lightweight, small, compact binoculars. The foldable design and only 0.6lb lightweight make them can be folded into palm-size, so it's ideal for an even broader range of long-distance pursuits. You wish there were binoculars set in your backpack. No need to keep regretting about your trips when get these affordable and compact binoculars.
  • The rubber armor ergonomic design and steady grip allows for accurate focusing, and have shock-resistance, anti-skid features while the design is slim and simple. Rugged construction rubber eye relief provides comfort for spectacle wearers, as do a dioptric adjustment ring and the strap mount.
  • Binoculars for adults and kids. These binoculars are fully competent and able to work for bird watching, hunting, hiking, travel, sports events, theater and concert. Also ideal great gifts for Chrismas, Father's Day and boys girls gifts.
SaleBirdInformer BESTSELLER # 3
12x42 Powerful Binoculars for Adults with Clear Low Light Vision - Large View Eyepiece Binoculars for Birds Watching Hunting Travel
  • 【Powerful 12x42 Binoculars, but Lightweight Enough, Weight only 1.1 pounds】 Equipped with 12x powerful magnification 42mm large objective lens and 367ft/1000yds large field of view. Capable of delivering a clear face from more than 650 feet away. 0.6 Pounds lighter than 10x50 full size binoculars.
  • 【18mm Large Eyepiece Binoculars, Larger Image, Clearer Details】 2.25 times the image size of 12mm eyepiece binoculars (e.g. 10x25 12x25 10x21 compact binoculars). Large eyepiece makes full use of 12x magnification, delivers larger image ensure clearer details.
  • 【HD Vision with Quality Optics】 Large 16.5mm BAK4 Prism and Fully Multi-coated lens guarantee the key elements of an HD vision brighter view and crisp images. Perfect for birds watching, hunting, Concerts and Sports.
  • 【Clear Low Light Vision】 Adorrgon Binoculars deliver clear vision in weak light condition but not in not completely darkness. Perfect for Hunting or Concerts at night. Comes with Carrying Case*1, Eyepiece *1, Lens Protection Covers*1, Cleaning Cloth*1 and Neck Strap*1.
  • 【Waterproof, Lightweight, Durable and Anti-slip Grip Binoculars】 Perfect for traveling or hunting. Durable structure with odorless rubber armor for shock-resistance and Anti-slip grip.
SaleBirdInformer BESTSELLER # 4
occer 12x25 Compact Binoculars with Clear Low Light Vision, Large Eyepiece Waterproof Binocular for Adults Kids,High Power Easy Focus Binoculars for Bird Watching,Outdoor Hunting,Travel,Sightseeing
  • 【HIGH-POWERED LARGE EYEPIECE BINOCULARS】 This binoculars has 12x magnification, 25mm objective lens and wide field of view, 273ft/1000yds, letting you look farther and see wider. Coating with FMC Broadband coating and premium BAK4 prism, it ensure imaging verisimilar.
  • 【ADJUSTABLE EYE CUPS FIT EYEGLASS WEARERS OR NOT】The binocs can be pull down the rubber eyepieces and more fit the glasses wearer, getting close to lens and see easily. The long eye relief combined with large eyepiece give you a comfortable viewing while wearing sunglasses or eye glasses. For those who do not wear glasses, will gain more focused slight and feel more easeful through rising eye cups. The compact binoculars has 15mm large eyepieces, can see more clear image than other binoculars.
  • 【FMC BROADBAND COATING TECHNOLOGY】The lightweight cruise binoculars is cover with BAK4 prism texture. The objective lens use optical FMC multilayer broadband green film, and the eyepiece-optical is made of blue FMC coating. All design ensure to provide a good image and make you have a amazing experience.
  • 【PORTABLE, COMPACT AND SMALL BINOCULARS DESIGN】 One hand can be mastered when you use the birding binoculars for opera,bird watching camping, traveling,wildlife watching,football games,cruise or other outside activity, the low light night vision goggles(Not for completely dark night) is more convenient for using and carrying.
  • 【DURABLE AND LIFE WATERPROOF, COMFORTABLE TOUCH】 The binoculars are made of ABS plastic and it also come with a cruise binocular strap, you can use this item in different situations. And rubber armor is made for secure grip.The pocket size binoculars is not only suitable for men and women,but also suitable for kids.It is wonderful to be a gift on Father's Day and Children's Day.
BirdInformer BESTSELLER # 5
Gosky 10x42 Roof Prism Binoculars for Adults, HD Professional Binoculars for Bird Watching Travel Stargazing Hunting Concerts Sports-BAK4 Prism FMC Lens-with Phone Mount Strap Carrying Bag
  • 【Compact Roof Prism 10x42 Binocular】 10X power magnification and large field of view, specially designed for outdoor activities such as climbing, hiking, driving, watching wildlife and scenery. This power also can be used for watching large stage play, vocal concert, a football game, etc.
  • 【HD Superior Optics】 Best 42mm fully multi-layer coatings green film objective lens and 18mm blue film eyepiece, Large smart phrase BAK4 prism, guarantee the key elements of an optical device, make your view brighter, clearer and deliver crisp images.
  • 【Durable Framework and Rubber Armor】 Its tight fitting protection makes it usable to withstand the toughest weather conditions. The shock-absorbing rubber armor for maximum protection.
  • 【Complete Binocular Accessories】 Comes with Newest Smartphone Mount compatible with Smartphone 11, 11 Pro, Xs, X, 8p, 8, 7p, 7, 6, 6p, Samsung S10/S10p, S9/S9p, S8/S8 Edge, S6/S6 Edge, Note, LG, HTC,Sony, and more. Also comes with Carrying Case, Rubber Lens Covers, Cleaning Cloth, Neck Strap.
  • 【Lifetime Warranty And Lifetime Technical Support】 Shop with confidence, you have it covered by Gosky lifetime warranty and a full money-back and replacement guarantee, on all orders to allow you to test the suitability of our product.
BirdInformer BESTSELLER # 6
Maylehare 12X42 Bird Watching Binoculars for Adults
  • 🔭【12x golden magnification】Both magnification and clear field of vision are taken into account. 12x magnification can see farther without eye discomfort due to blurred field of vision.
  • 🔭【Full multi-coated green lens】 FMC and BAK4 roof prism glass increases the transmittance of lens, makes the scene brighter and improves the color restoration.
  • 🔭【Binoculars with New Phone Adapter】Quick alignment, compatible with phone case, portable and stable. Suitable for most smart mobile phone models.
  • 🔭【20 mm exit pupil distance】 The longer exit pupil distance, even if you wear glasses, does not affect the observation effect, so that you can capture wonderful moments anytime and anywhere.
  • 🔭【A suitable gift for family】Our birding binoculars would be a great gift.You can give it to your friends, family and lover.Military quality, for you we offer the best! If you have any problems, please feel free to contact us anytime, we will be very happy to help you!
SaleBirdInformer BESTSELLER # 7
SkyGenius 10 x 50 Powerful Binoculars for Adults Durable Full-Size Clear Binoculars for Bird Watching Travel Sightseeing Hunting Wildlife Watching Outdoor Sports Games and Concerts
  • [ Professional Powerful Binoculars ] Designed with 10X power magnification, 50mm large objective lens and 367ft/1000yds large field of view good for fast moving subject, are ideal for bird watching, hunting, driving, sports events.
  • [ Weak Light Vision with Quality Optics ] Design of Aspherical lenses and multi-layer coating guarantee excellent light transmission and well improve image brightness, contrast and quality. It can be used at night, but not in complete darkness. Suitable for concerts, opera, sightseeing and astronomical viewing.
  • [ Durable, Solid and Anti-slip Grip ] Durable structure with odorless rubber armor for shock-resistance and Anti-slip grip, making it not only in decent appearance of more wear-resistant and moisture-proof, but also perfect for outdoor activities such as climbing, hiking, travelling, watching wildlife and scenery.
  • [ Easy to Focus ] Corrective optical coating are good for color fidelity and minimize distortion. Diopter System adjusting the imbalance vision of both eyes. The smooth and large center focus knob makes it simple to operate and easy to focus. ( Adaptable to tripod )
  • [ Adjustable Eye Cups ] The rubber covered eyepiece can be twisted up and down for different people adjusting a proper eye relief. The eyeglass wearers can adjust the eye relief through rising eye cups and feel more comfortable.

How Binoculars Work

The prism inside your binoculars is what magnifies the image and turns it right side up. There are two basic formats of prism, or the coming together of magnifying glass: Porro and Roof Prism.

Porro Vs. Roof Prism

The Porro prism is configured by two offset pieces of glass. These binoculars are wider and tend to be water-resistant, not waterproof. For birding, you really want to invest in the roof prism design. These Bird Watching Binoculars will be narrower, easier to adjust, and better protected against the elements.

Field of Vision

Now that the magnification method has been decided, it’s time to talk about field of view. A larger lens will allow you to take in a bigger field of view. However, these binoculars will be heavier. While this weight may not seem like a big deal in the store or just out the box, at the end of a three-mile hike, it will matter.

If you choose the best bird watching binoculars under $100 with a larger lens, consider getting a pair that has a tripod attachment as well. You can load up your gear in a backpack, head out to the birding site, and line your binoculars up on a tripod for steady viewing that doesn’t put pressure on your hands and wrists.

This is particularly important if you’re watching birds in the wild. If you want binoculars to watch the finches at your feeder, a narrow field of vision may be a better option.

Magnification

When shopping for the best bird watching binoculars under $100, keep an eye on the dimensional numbers listed in the description. For example, an 8×32 pair of Wingspan binoculars offers a magnification of 8 with a lens of 32 millimeters at the viewing end of the binoculars. They offer decent magnification with a good field of view and are quite lightweight at 15.2 ounces.

The Pentax SP 12×50 Binoculars offer a magnification of 12 and a 50 ml lens. This pair of binoculars also weighs in at 1.9 pounds, so make sure you get the heft of any 50 ml or larger lenses before you buy.

Electronics

You can purchase binoculars that come with a camera to record everything you’re viewing while on the birding trail. While these binoculars are quite small and lightweight at less than 9 ounces, it’s important to note that they are inherently fragile if you’re planning to be out in all weathers.

For example, they probably won’t handle rain well and may be susceptible to damage from humidity. If video is critical, or if you really want great night vision take the steps necessary to protect them. If it isn’t, invest in binoculars that aren’t quite so delicate.

Cases and Straps

You may want a case for your binoculars, particularly if they’re going to live in your vehicle so you can grab them at a moment’s notice while traveling. However, if you want to hike to a particular birding spot or enjoy birding on the trail, consider the expertise of hunters.

Even if the only thing you ever want to point at a bird is a camera, hunting gear is a great choice for protecting your binoculars. Hunters need their binoculars to

  • fit close to the body, to avoid distracting prey
  • survive percussive shock, such as from a rifle
  • keep the binoculars free of rain and condensation

Again, when trying on carrying cases and straps, consider how you’ll feel at the end of the hike. A shoulder harness may feel like overkill to carry your binoculars until you’ve been on the trail a couple of hours and the strap around your neck is digging a trench into your skin.

Most of these harnesses are quite lightweight, adjustable to your height and girth, and will keep the best bird watching binoculars under $100 protected.

Start Simple

If you’re looking for the best bird watching binoculars under $100 to make your morning walks or weekend hikes more enjoyable, don’t overbuy. Treat yourself to a lightweight pair of binoculars with at least 7 degrees of magnification and at least a 42-millimeter lens diameter. Take care to get a pair that is waterproof, and if you tend to walk in the morning, consider investing in a pair with a glare coating.

Play with your new toy. Get it outside and practice focusing, changing your position, and altering your view as you sweep from side to side. You may want to start playing while seated on a park bench until you’re familiar with the sense of movement as you turn your head. Practice focusing quickly so you don’t miss anything.

Bird Watching Binocular FAQs

Do I need InstaFocus?

Honestly, no. You can learn to focus your binoculars, and intensely studying and figuring out all the features of this remarkable tool are worth your time. That being said, InstaFocus is pretty nice, particularly if you’re using a high magnification product. To make sure you get what’s promised, check out the Bushnell line.

Does Waterproof Matter?

The first time you drop them in a puddle, yes. Waterproof will also matter if you leave them in your vehicle after a hike because the cooling process can lead to condensation and you want to avoid fog.

Carefully review the manufacturer’s recommendations for conditions when storing and using your binoculars. Fogged lenses may clear up with desiccants, or the view may always be less impactful after the binoculars get cold in your car. For long-term storage, try to keep them temperate.

Is a Tripod Worth It?

Yes, especially if you’re observing a particular nest. Especially if the magnification on your binoculars is very high, having a tripod to set up and hold the lenses stable while you study the nest of an eagle or any endangered creature. Set up the tripod, settle down, and get still. Your target will hopefully ignore you and return to normal behavior.

Also, once you have good binoculars you may start wanting to look at other things.

  • Are you viewing the night sky on the Darkness Trail in New Mexico? Binoculars and a tripod will definitely enhance your experience.
  • Do you have an interest in wolf conservation or grizzly bears? With a tripod, you can set up and get still so predators will ignore you as they live out their lives.

For consistent observation, having your binoculars lined up on a den or a nest can make your viewing much more enjoyable.

What About My Eye Glasses?

If you can see well up-close without your glasses on because you’re near-sighted, you can purchase binoculars that can be adjusted to serve your vision limitations. However, if you are far-sighted, you’ll want binoculars that will work over your glasses.

You will need to choose binoculars with adjustable eyecups to avoid scratching the lenses of your glasses. You’ll also need to get into the habit of holding your binoculars away from your face, at least far enough to keep them away from the lens of your glasses. This may lead to shakiness, so make sure to find a pair of binoculars that’s large enough to fit your hand well. Oddly enough, if they’re too small or too light, they’ll be harder to manage.

Does Night Vision Matter?

It depends on what you’re looking at. There are many creatures that spend the day in bed, or at least indoors and get active when the sun goes down. While night vision goggles aren’t a great option for birding, low light binoculars are a great choice for bird watching and can work from the grey light of early dawn to moonrise.

Be aware that most low light binoculars offer at least 12 degrees of magnification. You will want to learn to focus quickly to use anything with this magnification or higher, so again, be prepared to practice. However, low light binoculars are a great investment if you’re at all interested in predatory birds or nocturnal animal observation.

Start with a basic pair of binoculars that offer a magnification of at least 8. Consider a 50-millimeter lens for a broad field of vision. Get a pair that fits well in your hands, and take the time to turn focusing into a habit before you get on the trail. You’ll enjoy your birding expeditions a lot more if the action of the binoculars is automatic for you.

Best Bird Watching Binoculars Under $100 Wrapup

I enjoyed writing this article on the best bird watching binoculars under $100. I use these 12×42 Binoculars for Adults for my bird and nature watching. I especially like the smartphone adapter to allow me to take some great pics!

Related Articles:

Amazon Best Rated Products - Last Updated on 2021-05-12.

DISCLAIMER: Some or all of the product links on this page are affiliate links. The operator of this website received a small commission if you purchase products through these links, HOWEVER, there is no added cost to you. These commissions help to fund the operation of this BirdInformer.com