The 10 Best Compact Binoculars

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Binoculars are a fantastic invention. Whether you are looking for full-size binoculars or small binoculars the guide to purchasing compact binoculars included with this article will help you find the right ones for your needs.

The problem with binoculars is that there are so many to choose from! Fortunately, we are here to help bridge the gap. If you are after the best compact binoculars on the market then you’re in the right place! This guide reviews the 10 best compact binoculars, it will help you to understand what it is you need and which pair you should be buying.

The great thing about small binoculars is that they are easy to carry anywhere with you. Whether you love bird watching or gazing at the night sky, all of the best compact binoculars can be slipped into your pocket or bag and will be there when you need them.

Small binoculars also have the advantage of being comparatively light; this means you can hold them to your eyes for extended periods of time without suffering from arm ache. This might not seem like an important detail but you will appreciate it when you are watching a bird nesting or a constellation of stars!

Our Selection of the 10 Best Compact Binoculars:

This guide takes a look at the best compact binoculars, including how well they fold, how robust they are and how they compare to each other. If gives you all the information you need to order your mini binoculars today!

Without further ado, let’s get started!

1. Bushnell Powerview

Bushnell Powerview

Magnification: 8×21

Field View: 7.2°

Eye Relief: 10mm

The first contender on our list employs roof prisms to create a powerful magnification of x 8. You will also find a 21mm objective lens to help provide a good view of your surroundings. These binoculars look good, especially if you are trying to hide in the woods. You can buy them in a camouflage look, computer color or simply black. The design is simple yet elegant and functional. They are also coated in non-slip rubber which absorbs shocks and helps to prevent damage to them if you drop them.  The focus wheel is set in the center of the binoculars which make it very easy to adjust it while you are looking through the binoculars.

It is important to note that there is an array of choices if you choose these compact binoculars. This is reflected in the price range which can be as low as the $15 mark or in excess of $200. Magnification choices include x8, x10, x12, and x16. Objective lenses range from 21mm to 32mm and the close focus ranges from 20 feet to 35 feet with a field of view between 180 feet per 1,000 yards and 378 feet per 1,000 yard. Even the exit pupil is variable from 2 to 3.2. The weight of these impressive compact binoculars is between 7 ounces and 12.4 ounces.

The array of choices does mean that you can choose the small binoculars which match your needs and your budget. But this is not the only advantage of the Bushnell Powerview.  All pairs come with fully coated optics which protects your eyes and provides a brighter, clearer view of your chosen subject. The eyecups on these binoculars fold down to protect them and minimize the size when you are carrying them. In addition, they benefit from BK-7 prism glass which is the best currently available. It should be noted that this compact pair is not waterproof, not fog proof and cannot be put on a tripod.

Every pair comes with a soft carry case which helps to protect the binoculars while in transit. They also have a neck strap to ensure the binoculars are always to hand and you cannot accidentally drop them. The great thing about these binoculars and one of the reasons they make the 10 best compact binoculars list is not that they fold up small. It is the fact that you can purchase them in an array of magnifications which makes them perfect for you whether you intend to watch the wildlife or gaze at the stars.

The binoculars have received good feedback from existing customers, 76% of owners have given them 4 stars or more with just 7% offering a 1-star rating. All of the complaints seem to revolve around problems with the optics. These range from the speed of focusing on optical distortion. However, the proportion of bad reviews is incredibly small compared to the number of people who are satisfied with these mini binoculars.  Due to the negative reviews, the binoculars won’t win our best award but they certainly represent value for money and have an excellent array of specifications; depending on what you hope to use them for.

2. Wingspan Optics Spectator

Wingspan Optics Spectator

Magnification: 8×32

Field View: 6.8°

Eye Relief: 14.8mm

This is a sophisticated pair of binoculars! They are finished in black, with matt black anti-slip grips on each side. Despite being compact binoculars the main focusing knob is large enough to easily adjust while you are looking through the lenses. It is set centrally between the eyepieces and helps to create the perfect symmetry which shows you these are high-quality mini binoculars.

These compact binoculars come with lens covers for the lenses and the eyepieces. They also come with a useful carry case and a neck strap to help keep them safe while you’re moving around. Perhaps more impressively is the fact that these Wingspan binoculars come with a lifetime warranty. The warranty means that your binoculars will be replaced if they become damaged. Alongside this there is a 30-day guarantee; if you are not happy within 30 days of purchasing these small binoculars you can return them and have a full refund; no questions asked! This alone makes them a strong contender for the best compact binoculars on this list. The non-abrasive microfiber cleaning cloth which is provided as part of the deal is simply the icing on the cake. These binoculars can be adapted to mount them on a tripod, or you need is a bracket which can be easily ordered as an optional extra. They are waterproof and fog resistant. However, it should be noted that they are designed to be waterproof in extreme weather; they will not survive if they are fully immersed in water, such as swimming or even falling off your paddle board.

The statistics on these mini binoculars will rival those on any other set. The magnification is x8 and the objective lens is 32mm, allowing you a wide scope of vision which can quickly be narrowed if necessary. The prism is BaK4 which is one of the best currently available and perfectly adequate for the job of bird watching, star gazing or even watching your favorite game. The exit pupil diameter is 4mm with a distance of 14.8. You will certainly appreciate the field of view at 362 feet at 1,000 yards. You can focus on items as close as 3meters and enjoy the impressive magnification. The Wingspan name is written discreetly in white vertically across the top side of these binoculars and just adds to the quality of these mini binoculars. The eyepieces are soft rubber which ensures they are comfortable when being held to your eyes and help to protect the lens if you accidentally drop the binoculars.

Although these are not armored or protected by rubber you don’t need to worry about dropping them as the binoculars are covered by the comprehensive warranty. You can purchase these for between $200 and $250 and they are worth every cent.

The reviews are exceptionally positive; in fact, 92% of users have given these compact binoculars 4 stars or above. This is exceptional when you consider that they have been reviewed by 644 people and just 16 people have rated them with only 1 star. The main complaint seems to be in regard to focus issues. Unfortunately, even the best products will have some issues and the low number of complaints suggests that these are a quality pair of small binoculars in the running for our best compact binoculars award.

3. Nikon 8218 Trailblazer

Nikon 8218 Trailblazer

Magnification: 10×25

Field View: N/A

Eye Relief: N/A

Nikon is a familiar name in the world of cameras and known as one of the best. Of course, much of the technology included in their top of the range digital cameras is directly transferable to the best compact binoculars on the market. After all, cameras are designed to zoom and focus over great distances, just as binoculars are!

There is no doubt that the Nikon Trailblazer is a good looking pair of binoculars. They are finished in a matt black with gloss black on the centerpiece. The name of the binoculars is neatly emblazoned down the side of the centerpiece. The focus wheel is built into the center of the binoculars which makes it discreet, very accessible and adds an almost space-age feel to the binoculars. The way these binoculars curve down at the sides helps to create a futuristic look. Whether you are looking to be a spy, study the sky for alien spacecraft or simply undertake some bird watching, just picking up these binoculars will make you feel good.

The binoculars weigh just 1 pound and measure 4.5 inches by 4.1 inches with a depth of 1.8 inches. These will fit neatly into the palm of your hand.  You should be able to purchase a set of Nikon 8218 for between $90 and $120. They are compact and rugged as well as being waterproof and even fog proof. One of the best features is that they provide long eye relief. This means you can look through the lenses without holding them right up to your eyes, reducing eye strain.

The magnification on these compact binoculars is x10 which is excellent. The objective lens is 25mm and they use eco-glass optics as well as a soft rubber coating on the outside of the binoculars. This adds to the look of the binoculars and helps you to keep hold of them even in bad weather. Your field of vision is 342 feet at 1,000 yards, with an exit pupil of 11.5mm and eye relief of 6.3mm, even the angular field of view is good at 25mm. Most impressively is the fact that Nikon will provide a full lifetime warranty against any defects in workmanship or the materials. They will not cover you breaking them by dropping them; it is advisable to have insurance to cover this. As usual, you will find these binoculars come with a soft carry case, neck strap and a lens cleaning cloth. This will help you to keep your compact binoculars safe and ready to use whenever you need them. Of course, they also have lens caps to protect them while in transit; just don’t forget to remove them before using them!

Reviews of the Nikon 8218 Trailblazer are, unsurprisingly, excellent. An impressive 93% of owners have rated them with 4 stars or more.  The 3 people who have rated them with just 1 star have had issues with the optics, specifically the alignment and an issue with double vision. Unfortunately, as with any product, there will be some which are defective. Fortunately, Nikon’s warranty covers issues like this and you can purchase these binoculars with confidence. They are certainly the best value for money in this best compact binoculars review list.

4. Aurosports 10 x 25

Aurosports 10 x 25

Magnification: 10×25

Field View: 6.8°

Eye Relief: 14.8mm

The Aurosport directly competes against the Nikon in terms of magnification but, although being an attractive looking compact binocular it does not have the polished finish which the Nikon offering has. The binoculars will fold enough to fit comfortably into your hand. The finish is matte black with the name ‘Aurosports’ written in white across the top of the binoculars. The design is traditional; it follows the look of much bigger binoculars. Each side of these binoculars has a textured rubber section which is designed to maximize your grip on them while in use. This adds a rugged look and feels to the binoculars. The central focusing knob is discreet and easy to access despite being slightly recessed into the center of the binoculars. Both eyepieces are covered with soft rubber to ensure they are comfortable when being used for long periods of time. Just behind these are two discreet slots where you can attach the neck strap which comes with these mini binoculars.

One feature that is unique to these binoculars is the low light function. This helps you to see things when in poor light. There is no bight vision on these binoculars so it is impossible to see anything when there is no light. If you do need night vision then you should take a look at the best night vision goggles guide.

These binoculars also benefit from an impressive x10 magnification and have a 25mm objective lens. This will help you to see anything clearly with a field of view of 362 feet at 1,000 yards. The field angle is 6.9 degrees with eye relief of 14.8mm and a close focus of 3 meters. The eyepieces can twist to improve focus while the folding nature of these binoculars will ensure they are a comfortable fit over your eyes. You will also be glad to hear that they are waterproof, although they should not be submerged in water and the lenses are fully coated to protect your eyes and improve the visibility of any object you are looking at. It is important to note that these binoculars cannot be adapted to fit onto a tripod.

You will receive a soft carry bag and cleaning cloth with your binoculars and, of course, the neck strap.  The binoculars weigh approximately 10 ounces and measure just 4 inches by 4 inches when folded. The open size will depend on how far you open the binoculars to suit your eyes. These binoculars are much cheaper than the other offerings on the best compact binoculars list. In fact, you should be able to purchase them for between $30 and $50. Yet despite this low price they are well made and have a quality feel.

These binoculars do well in reviews; 89% of users rate them as 4 stars and above with just 10 customers giving them 1 star. The main issue raised by these users seems to be that the binoculars are too small to see through properly when held to your eyes. Considering they are on the best compact binoculars list you might question whether this is a reasonable complaint. After all, if you make them much bigger they won’t be mini binoculars or small binoculars but just regular binoculars. Perhaps these reviewers should consider purchasing larger binoculars next time!

5. SGODDE Compact Binoculars

SGODDE Compact Binoculars

Magnification: 8×25

Field View:

Eye Relief: N/A

These compact binoculars are black and look fantastic. The shape is fairly typical; the eyepieces are slightly narrower than the rest of the binoculars and sit on the top half of the set. They taper into the binoculars with a ribbed effect on each side as the binoculars gradually grow deeper to reach the size of the lenses. In fact, these binoculars almost have an elongated ‘S’ shape. The top of the binoculars features a textured section which adds to the look of these binoculars. This is also where the name is written in white.

They weigh just 3.53 ounces and measure 3.94 inches by 3.94 inches and by 3.94 inches! They incorporate BaK-4 prisms to provide excellent quality vision. These prisms reflect and even boost the light to ensure you have a bright, crisp and high-quality image. The optics are coated to protect your eyes and aid the brightness of the image. The magnification is x8 and the objective lens is 25mm and the field of view is 375 feet at 1,000 yards. You can adjust the width of the binoculars by folding them slightly to ensure they match your eye distance. You will also find that the focus knob is perfectly situated in the center of the binoculars. It is big enough to be felt without needing to take your eyes away from the view. A slight adjustment can make a big difference in the quality of the image. One additional benefit of the optic coating is that you are able to see well in low light conditions, although you can still not see in the dark.

You will also be pleased to discover that the SGODDE compact binoculars are listed as waterproof. In fact, they are certified to IP4 which makes them suitable for use in virtually any weather. It’s not recommended that you immerse them fully. Another useful feature is the fact that the lenses are fog proof; this can be a valuable asset if you have spent hours waiting in the damp for a special bird to appear. The binoculars are able to focus on images as close as 6 meters and should work effectively even in -50 degrees! The outer shell of these binoculars is coated in rubber armor. While this can help you to grip them comfortably it also protects them in case they do end up falling out of your hands.  Included with the binoculars you will find a useful neck strap which can be attached in moments to your new toy. There is also a lens cleaning cloth and a soft carry pouch as well as a comprehensive 12-month warranty and an impressive 60-day money back guarantee!

These binoculars are perhaps the best compact binoculars on the list. 97% of the people who have bought these have provided a 4 or 5-star rating! In fact, the only negative reviews are concerning the low light view no being as good as expected and the product is badly put together. Considering this is the only two negative comments it is fair to say that this is one set of compact binoculars which you will be happy purchasing.

6. BFULL 12×50 Binoculars

BFULL 12x50 Binoculars

Magnification: 12×50

Field View: 8.2°

Eye Relief: 12mm

Although these are compact binoculars they have the look of much larger binoculars. The left and right lenses are clearly separated. They are linked via two solid metal sections which also act as the hinges. Sitting between them is the large focus wheel. This is essential to set your binoculars up properly. All you need to do is close your right eye and look through the left lens with your left eye. Adjust the focus wheel until the picture is clear. You can then open the right eye and adjust the right eyepiece by twiddling the right eye piece. The focus should then be perfect.

The Bfull 12×50 binoculars are black and are on the larger side for compact binoculars but they are still small enough to class as compact binoculars. The finish is more matt then gloss which helps them to be barely visible when you are concealed, waiting for the right bird to appear. The lens has a faint blue coat and the focus wheel is perfectly positioned to be easily adjusted while you are looking through the lenses.

These binoculars are 7.5 inches by 6.8 inches by 3 inches and weigh just 2.32 pounds. The magnification is 12 and the objective lenses are 50mm. You will also find the eyepieces are exceptionally comfortable as they are 20mm wide and can be easily adjusted to fit the width of your eyes. The prisms are BK7, one of the best current available and the MC lens coating ensures you can see images clearly without any reflective issues. The exit pupil diameter is 5mm and you will enjoy a field of view of 328 feet at 1,000 yards. These are impressive statistics for any compact binocular but you will also receive a free pouch to keep them safe when not in use. There is also a convenient neck strap, a cleaning cloth, lens caps and a comprehensive set of instructions.

The size of the objective lens allows the maximum possible light into the binoculars which will enable you to see objects even in low light. Of course, without a night vision scope, you won’t be able to see in the dark! One of the best things about these Bfull binoculars is the price; you should be able to purchase them for under $50. As an added bonus it is easy to adapt these binoculars to fit a tripod. You will also benefit from a lifetime service warranty and a 30-day money back guarantee. The fact is that these binoculars are the best compact binoculars on this list. This is confirmed by the fact that 94% of users have rated them with 4 or 5 stars. In fact, 90% of them have given them 5 stars! The interesting thing is that three of the four reviews which give 1 star had a problem with focusing of the binoculars; a problem which was subsequently resolved.

Whether you are hoping to watch sports, gaze at the stars or enjoy some hiking and bird watching, these are the best compact binoculars available an should be a serious contender on your shortlist.

7. Emarth 10 x 26 Compact Binoculars

Emarth 10 x 26 Compact Binoculars

Magnification: 10×26

Field View:

Eye Relief: 8mm

Hold your hand out flat and these Emarth binoculars should fit snuggly into them. They are small enough and light enough to be used by adults or children and can even make a great gift for that special occasion. The binoculars are the customary black, although the name is written discreetly in a yellow gold. The name tag is shiny, smooth lack while the rest of the binoculars have a matte finish that makes them look and feel professional. They weigh just 450 grams and measure 3.54 inches by 4.33 inches with a diameter of 1.46mm. They don’t just fit snugly in your hand they feel good too! The focus wheel is large enough to feel and turn without looking for it; you can even manipulate it with gloves on! The eyepieces are soft and manage to appear a slightly different shade of black to the rest of the binoculars. Down each side, you’ll find a ribbed effect which helps you to maintain your grip even in cold or wet weather. There are also convenient hooks built into the sides, just below the eyepieces. These allow you to add the neck strap and carry the binoculars comfortably while exploring.

The specs on these binoculars are excellent. You will appreciate the x10 magnification and the detail it gives you even when your target object is a considerable distance away. The objective lens is an impressive 26mm giving you plenty of light even in low light settings. This should help you to see animals, birds and other objects even at dusk or dawn.  The magnification is handled by a BAK4 prism glass system which is one of the best currently on the market. The lens is coated to reduce reflections and improve the quality of the image. The viewing field is 316 feet at 1,000 yards with an exit pupil distance of 8mm and the ability to see items as close as 1.2 meters. This is the best of all the mini binoculars on this 10 best compact binoculars list. You might also be interested to note that the exit pupil diameter is 2.5mm and that the eyecups can twist to improve the focus on a specific item. This and the fact that the binoculars fold in the middle will also help you to make them comfortable when setting them for your own eye width. The soft eyepieces ensure these are comfortable even if you wear glasses and you will benefit from long eye relief which helps to reduce fatigue when using these compact binoculars for an extended period of time.

The binoculars come with a soft carry bag which can be used with the neck strap to ensure the binoculars are safe and with you at all times. This helps to protect them as you walk. You will also find a lens cloth and a set of instructions to ensure you know how to set the focus and get the most out of your new binoculars. There is a lifetime warranty to help you deal with any issues in respect of materials and a money back guarantee to give you peace of mind. The fact that they are fog proof and water resistant will help to convince you that these are one of the best compact binoculars currently available. The fact that you can get them for under $50 helps!

Although not the best rating you will be pleased to see that 89% of users have rated these binoculars with 4 or 5 stars. This is a good result and the fact that the two 1 star ratings which have been offered both simply say that the binoculars are cheap and not worth the money. Without any real knowledge of the issues, these people have faced it is impossible to determine whether you should pay any attention to these responses. However, the fact that there are just two comments and a host of positive reviews suggest that these binoculars are worth investing in.

8. SkyGenius 8 x 21 Small Compact Binoculars

SkyGenius 8 x 21 Small Compact Binoculars

Magnification: 8×21

Field View: 6.8°

Eye Relief: 16mm

The fact that these compact binoculars need to state that they are small binoculars shows that these are some of the smallest binoculars you can buy, even in the compact range! The binoculars measure just 4.1 inches by 3.6 inches by 2.4 inches. They weigh a reasonable 6.24 ounces and you can pick them up for less than $30. This is quite impressive considering the spec of these stylish binoculars. Closed the binoculars are just 2.4 inches wide, when fully opened they are still only 4.14 making them potentially the smallest binoculars on the best compact binoculars list. They weigh just .38 pounds.

The SkyGenius binoculars are well designed. Of course, they are black; each eyepiece is hinged to the center panel and folds under it to make them very compact and easy to carry. The center panel is broken into two sections. The larger piece holds the main hinges and has the focus wheel in the center while the smaller bridges the gap and adds a gentle curve to improve the style of the binoculars. Although the whole finish is more matte than gloss it does have a gentle shine which gives them a professional feel.

They might be small and light but the specifications are excellent. Your field of view is 369 feet at 1,000 yards. This is enough to rival the best on this list. The magnification is 8and the objective lens is 21mm. This might not be the highest number on the list but it is impressive enough to provide plenty of light and ensure you have a clear view of an object. The optical prism is top of the range; they use BK7 glass which is coated to ensure reflections will not disturb your image. The eyepiece diameter is 13mm with an angle of the vision set at 6 degrees. Perhaps most importantly is the fact that you can focus on objects as close as 2 meters with the eye relief set at 16mm. Whether you want to use it every weekend or are just keen to get the kids into the garden this is a powerful pair of compact binoculars. You will get a neck strap and cleaning cloth with these binoculars. However, if you want a carry bag you’ll need to find your own; you can expect everything for the price you’re paying!

The reviews of these binoculars are excellent, making it possibly the best value of all the best compact binoculars on this list. 93% of users have given them a 4 or 5-star rating. The main issue with these binoculars seems to revolve around an inability to focus and a lack of instructions. These two issues may actually be connected as with instructions most consumers would learn that you need to focus one eye first and then fine tune the binoculars to add the second eye. The fact that there are just 13 1-star ratings from over 450 reviews would suggest that these binoculars are worth investing in. The light might not be the best on the market but they are certainly the best value compact binoculars.

9. Occer 12 x 25 Compact Binoculars

Occer 12 x 25 Compact Binoculars

Magnification: 12×25

Field View: 7.5°

Eye Relief: 15mm

These high powered binoculars fold into your hand, while you won’t be able to completely conceal them, in reality, they are little bigger than a modern iPhone. The Occer are black, a common feature for most high-quality compact binoculars. They look like something that James Bond could pull out of his pocket; of course, then they would be more than just binoculars.

The style is discreet yet shapely. The sides join via a hinge which seamlessly allows movement to adjust the width of the binoculars and ensure they are comfortable to your eyes. The name ‘Occer’ is embossed into the middle of the binoculars but is discreet enough to look good. Just in front of this and behind the eyepieces is the focus wheel. It is large enough to be moved smoothly even with gloves on. Each eyepiece rotates to allow you to fine-tune the focus and get just the image you want. The finish is matte black and there is a good reason for this; it reduces the reflection of the sun which gives away your position. This is very important if you are watching birds, hunting or simply being James Bond…

The magnification is set at x12 which is very good for even the best compact binoculars. You will also note an objective lens of 25mm and the eyepieces are 15mm, large enough to be comfortable even if you wear glasses. The flexible rubber coatings also help to provide maximum comfort when you are using these binoculars. You will be impressed with the field of view; it is 273 feet at 1,000 yards. Although this is not the best on this list of best compact binoculars it is good enough for most uses and the wide lenses ensure the quality of the image remains high even in low light. You can focus on objects as close as 5 meters and the BAK 4 prisms will help to ensure the image is clear. The coating on the lenses is also beneficial to reduce or even eliminate reflections. The exit pupil diameter is an impressive 20mm.

You will also be pleased to note that these small binoculars are waterproof against rain showers and even splashes. They should not be immersed in water as this is likely to cause internal damage to your binoculars.  They measure 4.5 inches by 4 inches and are just 1.9 inches wide; making them a comfortable option for children as well as adults. To ensure you look after them they are equipped with a neck strap. This clips effortlessly onto each side of the binoculars and will keep them securely around your neck. Also included is a soft carry bag, a lens cleaning cloth and a ‘skid-proof’ rope. This is pretty impressive for a pair of mini binoculars which are worth under $50.

The star ratings from users confirm just how good these binoculars are. 93% of users have given these binoculars a 5-star rating! That’s a pretty impressive statistic. Perhaps even better is the fact that no users have rated them with 1 star. The main negative comments seem to be that you get what you pay for. Perhaps there is some truth in that a more expensive pair will provide a clearer view of distant objects. But, for the money, you are unlikely to find a better pair of binoculars and that is why these mini binoculars win the best compact binoculars title for best binoculars!

10. G4Free 12 x25 Compact Binoculars

G4Free 12 x25 Compact Binoculars

Magnification: 12×25

Field View: 6.5°

Eye Relief: N/A

Put simply these look good, as in they look like they mean business. Considering they are priced around $50 – $75 they could be one of the best investments you have ever made! The smooth black lines of these binoculars are broken only by the large anti-slip rubber grips on each side of the binoculars. These are embedded into these mini binoculars and are useful as well as feeling good. The eyepieces are incorporated into the binoculars. Their soft rubber sleeves helping to provide you with comfort. These can be rolled down to allow for when you are wearing glasses. The name is written in white on the top and looks a little bright compared to the matt black finish. However, it is fairly discreet. The focus wheel is set between the eyepieces to ensure you can easily access it while the sides of the binoculars move to accommodate different widths between eyes. They measure 4.4 inches by 4.4 inches by 1.77 inches, small enough to be comfortable in your hand but large enough to be effective. You might be surprised that they weigh just 0.9 pounds.

These small binoculars offer a magnification of x12, as good as any other offering on this best compact binoculars list. You will also appreciate the 25mm objective lens to ensure the image you see is clear, even in low light levels. It is important to note that the green tint on the lenses does prevent reflections and help you to see in low light but it does not give you night vision! The binoculars are water resistant. You shouldn’t have any issues in most weather but you should not immerse them in water.  The optical system is BAK4 and the lenses are designed not to fog, regardless of when you use them.  You might also want to know that the exit pupil diameter is 2.08mm, the exit pupil distance is 9.6mm and you can use them in conditions as cold as -50°! The minimum distance you will be able to focus is 3 meters.

Included with your purchase is the standard carry bag, neck strap, and a lens cleaning cloth. This will help to ensure your binoculars stay in tip-top condition and give you the best experience every time you use them. You also get instructions and a comprehensive warranty. The instructions are important if you have not used binoculars before. They will guide you through the setup process which will ensure you have good focus. This involves focusing first with one eye closed and then fine-tuning the adjustment with the other eye. It’s worth taking a few moments to complete this properly as it will make a huge difference to your enjoyment of the binoculars.

86% of users have given these mini binoculars a 4 or 5-star rating. While not the best in the best compact binoculars review this is a good figure and one which emphasizes just how good these binoculars really are. There are a few 1-star ratings which all seem to center on focusing issues; these could be operator issues or a flaw with the binoculars. The other issue relates to them fogging despite being sold as anti-fog binoculars. Unfortunately, this is likely to be a manufacturing error but the fact that there are so few negative comments means that you should not concern yourself with them. They are a good pair of binoculars otherwise they wouldn’t have made the 10 best compact binoculars list!

Compact Binoculars – Your Ultimate Buying Guide

Now that you know the best 10 compact binoculars it’s time to consider which the right one for your needs is. This might not be an easy decision as every one of these best 10 compact binoculars has the potential to be the perfect partner for you; regardless of your intended use. This is why it is essential to take a look at this guide; it will help you to choose the right mini binoculars. It is important to note that while many of the binoculars on this list will provide good visibility in low light levels they are not equipped to deal with no light. For that, you need to take a look at the 10 best night vision goggles.

Intended Use

A good pair of binoculars should be usable in a wide variety of different situations. Whether you are looking to go hunting or bird watching a pair of mini binoculars should do the job very effectively.

However, some activities, such as marine-based sports will need you to have larger objective lenses. In these instances, the larger lenses will help you to spot items on the water over a great distance. This is one instance when the compact binocular might not be your best choice. It is important to consider what you are using your binoculars for as this will ensure they are capable of the task. It will also help to narrow your search field and that you purchase the right binoculars for your needs.


The price of compact binoculars varies according to the quality of their build and their abilities. Obviously, it would be nice to simply buy the most expensive one on offer. However, this is not always a practical solution.

It is essential to consider how much money you can afford to spend on your small binoculars. You should only spend money which is spare; there is little point in purchasing binoculars on credit. Instead, choose a budget range and use this to help guide you to the right purchase.


You have probably already noticed an abundance of terms included in this compact binoculars review guide. You may already know what some of them are referring to but it is important to be sure before you start making your decision. While not all will be important for your intended use the terminology might pass on useful information.

There are many guides on the internet but the following basic terms should help you to understand what you are buying:

  • Magnification – this is simply how much bigger an item will appear when looking through the binoculars. For example, x2 means that the image will be twice as big as it is under normal eyesight. Obviously, x8, x10, and x12 as used by the binoculars in this best compact binoculars review will provide a significant improvement over your normal eyesight.
  • Objective lens – this is the lens at the opposite end of the binoculars to where you look. The larger this lens is the better its ability to draw in light and create an accurate image of the subject. It should also have a coating to reduce reflection and maximize the brightness and clarity of the image.
  • Field of view – The field of view is how wide a distance you can see at long distances. It is usually described as so many feet per 1,000 yards. The greater the field of view the more likely it is you will see things in the distance before they disappear out of view. However, larger fields of view will generally offer lower levels of magnification although t can help to prevent eye fatigue!
  • Exit pupil diameter – this is a figure which describes the number of light rays which enter the objective lens and make it right the way through to the eyepiece, also known as the ocular lens. The higher the exit pupil diameter the better your binoculars will work at night. It is useful to know that human eyes generally dilate to approximately 3mm in bright light so a good exit pupil diameter should be similar to this.
  • Eyepiece size – this is just a measurement of the size of the eyepiece and will give you an idea of how comfortable they’ll feel when you are using the mini binoculars. The more comfortable they are the easier it will be to use them for long periods of time.
  • Prism – The objective lens and eyepiece lens in your mini binoculars actually invert the picture. This might not make sense to your brain and is the reason why most binoculars use prisms. These return the image to the right way up, allowing you to see something much closer than it actually is.

There are many other terms which can be applied to binoculars but these should be enough to help you find the perfect pair!


The major manufacturers have built themselves reputations for first class service and products. This might be enough to persuade you to purchase a specific brand of compact binoculars. For some people this is all they need to know, they are extremely brand loyal.

However, it is advisable to verify the quality of the specific product. Even the best manufacturers can get it wrong sometimes! The easiest way to verify a particular product is to look at the reviews online. There are two places which are worth looking at. The first is Amazon to gauge the response from people who have used the binoculars already. You will always find some negative comments but a look at the overall trend will help you to establish how good a specific pair of compact binoculars is.

The second way is to check online forums where people will discuss their various purchases. This will allow you to assess whether the binoculars are as good as they appear to be. They certainly should be if they have made this best compact binoculars list!

Magnification and Closeness

It is also important to look at the magnification that each pair offers. The greater the magnification the further you will be able to see. Of course, there are other elements to consider such as objective lens size but understanding the basic terminology will help you to choose the right magnification for your intended use.

Likewise, you may find it useful to know how close you can be to an object and still magnify it. This is a feature that photographers often look for as it can make a big difference to the quality of a close image. You never know when this might be useful.


You need to take a look at the warranty on offer. Some of the manufacturers offer lifetime warranties against any defect in their product. Others simply offer a money back guarantee for a set period of days.

The better the warranty the safer you can feel purchasing your new compact binoculars. Of course, any item bought over the internet should have a default return period but you might be charged postage and restocking charges. If the product does not live up to your expectations you need to be able to return it without losing money.


Finally, it is not easy to test any binoculars when they are online, although you could order several pairs and test them all before returning the ones you don’t want. However, a simpler approach is to take a look at what your friends are using and try them for yourself. You can also visit a local store to test out the look and feel of each pair.

You will almost certainly need to order them online to get them at the best possible price.


Choosing the best compact binoculars for your intended use is not an easy process. There are many terms which need to be understood before you can really commit to the right pair. But, that is what this guide is for. You should now understand or be able to refer to this short glossary to help you understand exactly what each pair of mini binoculars is offering. This means you will be able to make an informed choice and can choose a pair which should give you years of service.

In my opinion, the Nikon 8218 represent the best value for money; they combine an attractive price with big brand backing and a host of useful features.

The Occer 12 x 25 wins the best compact binoculars award. While they might not be as well known they are the best specification for your money and worth considering for your next binoculars.

One additional point you need to consider is how long you will spend looking through the binoculars in one sitting. The longer the time period the more likely it is that you will develop eye fatigue and possible even strain your eyes. To avoid this you need to choose a pair of compact binoculars which allows you to look through the binoculars without having them held right up to your eyes. This can also be more comfortable for long time periods.

Of course, before picking your compact binoculars it is a good idea to take a look at the guide to buying and review your favorite products yourself. The important thing is to consider what you need from your binoculars; this will help to ensure you choose a pair that is reliable, practical and actually useful in the short and the long term. A good pair of compact binoculars and a feature of any that appear on the 10 best compact binoculars list is that they are lightweight; you will be able to carry them everywhere with you. This means you’ll never miss the action, no matter what your favorite action is!

David Harris
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David Harris
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