In the world of technology and gadgets, it’s easy to spend lots of money on the gear you want. With any sort of equipment there is varying prices and you might be wondering if outlaying the extra money is worth it.
Whether you’re looking for the best hunting binoculars or binoculars for bird watching, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a quality piece of equipment. There is a great range of products that will give you just what you want and need in a set of binoculars without breaking the bank.
I’m going to review the top 10 binoculars under 100 dollars to prove that you don’t need to go into debt to get a great product. I will compare all the features and show you which ones I consider to be the best binoculars for the money.
Table of Contents
- Best Binoculars Under $100 – Comparison Table
- Top 10 Binoculars Under 100 Reviews
- Wingspan Optics Spectator Compact Binoculars
- Nikon 8248 Aculon A211 Binoculars
- Gosky Roof Prism Binoculars
- Bushnell H2O Prism Binoculars
- Celestron 71008 SkyMaster Binoculars
- Nikon Aculon A30 Binoculars
- Apeman BC 100 HD Binoculars
- ZoomX 007 Compact Binoculars
- Aurosports High Powered Folding Binoculars
- Bushnell 130521 Spectator Binoculars
- What to Look for When Choosing the Best Binoculars Under 100 Dollars
Best Binoculars Under $100 – Comparison Table
|Wingspan Optics Spectator||8x||362 ft||32mm|
|Nikon 8248 Aculon A211||22x||341 ft||50mm|
|Gosky Roof Prism Binoculars||10x||307 ft||42mm|
|Bushnell H2O Roof Prism||10x||305 ft||42mm|
|Celestron 71008 Skymaster||25x||141 ft||70mm|
|Nikon Aculon A30 Binoculars||10x||262 ft||25mm|
|Apeman BC100 HD Binoculars||10x||294 ft||50mm|
|ZoomX Binoculars for Adults||10x||305 ft||42mm|
|Aurosports Folding||10x||362 ft||25mm|
|Bushnell Black Spectator||4x||900 ft||30mm|
Top 10 Binoculars Under 100 Reviews
The Wingspan Optic Spectator is a powerful set of binoculars that will suit just about any situation. It will provide amazing detail at sporting events, bird watching, hunting, or music concerts. The Wingspan is lightweight; it’s only 15 ounces. That makes them a great choice if you’re on the go a lot, and perfect for both children and adults.
The Wingspan Optics may be small, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t powerful. These binoculars have a wide field of view (362ft/1000yds) and you’ll feel like you’re right in the action with the 8x magnification. You will get the bright and clear details you want with this pocket sized, portable binoculars. The 32mm objective lens will give you optimal viewing with clarity and vibrancy.
If you want to see something in more detail that is close by, the Wingspan has a Close Focus of 3m making them perfect for viewing birds and butterflies in amazing detail.
These binoculars have a non-slip Ergo-Tank casing making them comfortable and easy to hold for any outdoor activity. They are also waterproof and fog proof. The Wingspan comes with a neck strap, nylon mesh carry case; an eyepiece and lens protection covers. There is a non-abrasive microfiber cleaning cloth to keep your lens in tiptop shape.
Features I like
The Wingspan uses Bak4 prism technology. It uses superior optical glass to make sure whatever you’re viewing is crystal clear. The Bak4 prism promotes better light transition and ensures everything you view is razor sharp and vibrant.
I think the Wingspan is a great set of binoculars and real value for the money. The 8x mm magnification is very powerful while the whole unit is lightweight and transportable. It would make a great gift for someone who has a lot of different interests maybe car racing, bird watching, hiking or concerts. It will provide the user with flexibility in both what they view and where they can take their binoculars. The Wingspan provides such great viewing results, perfect detail and clear imagery for a fraction of what you’d expect to pay for this type of quality.
It also comes with accessories such as a neck strap; carry case, lens covers and cleaning cloth making the Wingspan great value for money.
The Wingspan is incredibly durable; it’s high tech and affordable. The only concern that I’d suggest is that serious bird watchers may require higher magnification. But these binoculars are a great “all-rounder” for a wide range of activities.
These binoculars have been engineered to be lightweight as well very ergonomic in their design. This means they are extremely comfortable to use as well as being portable. The have “turn-and-slide” eyecups which can be adjusted and customized allowing you to view for long periods of time in comfort.
The Nikon 8248 has a triad of optical technology within these binoculars. The zoom feature is unique to Nikon and allows the user to tailor the wide range of magnifications to specific situations. The Nikon Eco-Glass lenses also give amazing clarity and incredible precision. With the large field of view at 341ft/1000yds you’re unlikely to miss a thing.
The Aculon A211 binoculars have 10x magnification and the smooth focus knob allows you to set the focus quickly and easily. The zoom lever is on the eyepiece and allows for quick changes in magnification ensuring you don’t miss a thing. The 50mm objective lens allows more light to enter the binoculars and provides great results even in low light.
The Nikon Aculon binoculars have also been built to last with a durable rubber armored coating that will handle the bumps that will naturally come with use. The non-slip grips provide added safety against damp conditions and rain.
The Bak4 prism system that is integrated into the Nikon 8248 binoculars will provide vibrant images and great clarity in most types of lighting.
Features I like
The multi-coated Eco-Glass lenses are what make these binoculars so lightweight. They are made using a composition that is free from lead and arsenic.
I also really like where the focus knob is located on these binoculars. It makes these binoculars really easy to operate and simple to use. The central focus knob allows you to adjust the focus quickly and easily. The ‘turn-and-slide’ eyecups are very soft and they can be adjusted quickly to custom fit the user. You can tell that these eyecups would make a positive impact on your comfort during long periods of use.
Nikon has a great reputation when it comes to optical equipment such as binoculars and cameras. Some people may prefer to purchase from this reputable brand as opposed to one they are unfamiliar with.
Despite the Nikon 8248 Aculon A211 being very durable and tough, this model is not waterproof or water resistant. If you are regularly around water or live in a rainy climate, this may not be the best choice for you.
The Gosky features 10x magnification and has a large field of view 307ft/1000yds. It has been specifically design for use in the great outdoors and would be a great pair of binoculars for the nature lover. The 42mm objective lens bring in the right amount of light to give you extremely good images that are precise and sharp.
The powerful magnification and the large field of view makes the Gosky great for hunters, hikers, wildlife watching and viewing scenery. They are lightweight, measuring just over 24 ounces and will be easy to transport.
These binoculars have quality internal optics with multi-layer coatings in green and blue. These will make your view bright and vibrant, and all imagery will be crystal clear and crisp. The Gosky will enable you to view your target through the Bak4 prism, in high definition and with true to life detail.
Durability has also been a consideration when constructing these binoculars and the Gosky Roof Prism has a tough framework that has been coated in rubber armor. This coating will protect your binoculars from most weather conditions and provide shock-absorbing protection from minor bumps.
I also like that the adjustable eyecups twist up and down easily. You can view easily and comfortably even if you wear glasses.
Features I like
I absolutely love all the accessories that come with the Gosky binoculars. In addition to getting a great set of binoculars, you will also receive a safety strap so that you can carry it around your neck and be able to access your binoculars at a moments notice. It can also eliminate the likelihood that your binoculars are accidently dropped.
You also get a carry bag for easy and safe transportation, and eyepiece and lens covers to protect your equipment when not in use. A cleaning cloth is also included to keep your binoculars clean and in great shape.
I have saved the absolute best for last. For me personally, the smart phone adapter is a game changer. I enjoy hiking in the outdoors and I love to take photographs of wildlife and landscapes. What I don’t like about photographing on my hikes is lugging all my heavy camera gear with me. The smart phone adaptor that comes with the Gosky allows you to attach your smartphone to the binoculars and take photos through the viewer.
If you love the idea of the smart phone adapter as much as I do, be sure to check that the adapter is compatible with your smartphone. The Gosky adapter will suit:
- iPhone models ranging from X to 5s including Plus models
- Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, S5 and Note
- Other brands such as LG, HTV and Sony are compatible also
The Bushnell H2O binoculars are made with 100% quality materials that were put under rigorous testing during the development phase. This has resulted in Bushnell’s creating one the of the best value binoculars on the market.
The Bushnell H2O has a large field of view, 305ft/1000yds that will give you great range of visibility. These binoculars have Bak-4 prisms for crisp and bright viewing. The optics are multi-coated to more effectively transmit light. These binoculars have a 10x magnification to zoom in and show the details you want to see, while to 42mm objective delivers those details clearly and precisely.
As the name suggest, these binoculars are 100% waterproof. It has been O-ring sealed to make it safe for use around water and on boats. The Bushnell H2O has also been nitrogen purged which ensures superior fog-free performance when temperatures are rapidly changing or in humid conditions.
The Bushnell is covered in a durable rubber coating that can absorb minor shock and bumps. The coating is also non-slip for added safety in wet conditions. The H2O also features twist up eyecups that can retract when not in use.
The focus knob is centered on the top of these binoculars for easy adjusting. It also has a 12ft close focus distance and 17mm eye relief.
Features I like
Anyone that enjoys being out on the water, looking for sea life and water birds would find the Bushnell H2O a great addition to their kit. When Bushnell says that these binoculars are 100% waterproof, they aren’t just talking about a few splashes or heavy rain. These binoculars will survive being fully immersed in water. That’s great piece of mind if you’re by the river or out fishing.
In addition to waterproofing, the Bushnell H2O has been set up to achieve great fog-free results in humid or rainy conditions. So what does “nitrogen purge” or “optical purge” mean? Lots of optical equipment such as binoculars, cameras and telescopes use nitrogen for the process of purging. This process makes sure that lenses remain fog-proof on the outside and also waterproof on the inside of the device too. When optical gear is filled with nitrogen, it replaces the oxygen that naturally contains moisture.
This really is a great value choice if you require the waterproof and fog free features that the Bushnell H2O can provide. The only concern that I could find with this model was small, and it’s that the glass used in these binoculars contains lead.
The Celestron 71008 SkyMaster has a large objective lens of 70mm, which is the largest in the group. The bigger the objective lens, the more light that the lens can capture. Binoculars that have large objective lens are better able to cope with dim conditions and also nighttime stargazing.
An objective lens measuring 70mm will be able to provide maximum image brightness in low light and is a favorite with those that use binoculars in dim conditions.
The SkyMaster has 25x magnification porro prism and a field of view at 141ft/1000yds. You can expect super sharp focus and clarity across the full range of view. The optics are multi-coated and combined with the Bak-4 prisms you will get bright, vibrant imagery and crystal clear viewing.
The Celestron SkyMaster is covered in a protective rubber coating and has a non-slip firm grip. A carry case is included for storage and safe travel. It has an adaptor where you can attach a tripod if required and the long eye relief is ideal for those who wear glasses.
Features I like
The 70mm objective lens is the standout feature of these binoculars. A lot of people might assume that binoculars are just for day use, but some people will use their binoculars predominantly in low light. Some will need them for hunting at dawn and dusk and others will use them at night for looking at the starts.
The Celestron SkyMaster has serious light capturing power in low light conditions. For people that like to look at the stars and are interested in astronomy, these binoculars offer great quality at a reasonable price. It is also priced well below what you’d expect to pay for a larger telescope.
If you do decide to ramp up your interest in stargazing, The Celestron SkyMaster has a range of accessories including tripods and binocular adapters.
The Celestron SkyMaster is not waterproof or splash resistant. Any contact with water could potentially damage the integrity of these binoculars.
The Nikon A30 is a very portable set of binoculars. They are extremely lightweight weighing less than 10 ounces, which makes the A30 a great travelling companion.
Nikon’s 25mm lenses are multi-coated to enhance the vibrancy of images and their brightness. The quality optics delivers remarkable clarity and precision. These lenses are produced with lead and arsenic free glass.
The field of view measures 262ft/1000yds. These binoculars have a 10x magnification capability that means you will be close up to the action whether you’re viewing wildlife in the outdoors or watching sport in an arena.
The central focus knob is easy to use, and glides smoothly to adjust the focus. The body of the Nikon A30 binoculars are ergonomically designed to ensure your comfort, even during long periods of use.
All Nikon binoculars are built using the highest quality materials and strict quality control. They ensure quality products that will last and provide after sale service and support. Nikon has a long history of producing quality optics and designs; and you can expect high resolution and crystal clear images.
Features I like
The A30 binoculars from Nikon are designed really well. Although it’s extremely lightweight, it still feels like a quality product. Even with long periods of use, I don’t think there is a possibility for arm strain or a sore wrist given that these binoculars weigh less than 10 ounces.
In addition to the minimal weight of these binoculars, Nikon appears to have spent quite a bit of time getting the body design right too. They are extremely comfortable to hold, fitting securely in your palms due to the ergonomic design.
You also know that the optics will be superior quality, given Nikon’s reputation for manufacturing quality cameras and binoculars. While this product doesn’t have a big price tag, it doesn’t mean you have to skimp on quality.
The Nikon Aculon A30 binoculars are not waterproof and have not been nitrogen purged. This might result in minimal fogging in humid climates or damp conditions.
Apeman has put together these high definition professional binoculars for the outdoor explorer. Features include a wide field of view (294ft/1000yds) and 10x magnification. The objective lens is 42mm and is perfect for hunting, bird watching, concerts and sporting events.
The lenses are fully multi-coated will make sure you get the brightest and most vibrant view. The Apeman is splash proof and will resist water, although it should not be completely submerged in water or used in heavy rain conditions.
The Apeman BC 100 is solid in its construction with a durable framework. It is coated in protective rubber amour that can withstand minor bumps. This will keep your binoculars safe and provides comfort for the user.
The rotating eye shield ensures convenience for those who wear glasses and is easy to use for all people. The eyecups twist up and down and are simple to operate. There are two ways to focus the Apeman binoculars. There is a conveniently located center focus ring and also one on the right eye ring.
Features I like
The Apeman BC 100 comes with a range of handy accessories that aims to improve safety, ease of use and enhance your overall experience. The neck strap connects easily making the binoculars a breeze to carry when you’re on the go. The carry bag will ensure your binoculars will be stored safely when they are not in use, or when travelling.
The eyepiece covers and lens protection covers safeguard against scratches and breakages. Apeman also provides a full user manual so that you can get all the benefits from your new binoculars.
The Apeman BC 100 can be mounted on a tripod if required, to give you stationary hands free viewing. You will also be able to take great photographs as the Apeman has an adaptor so that you can attach your smart phone to capture special moments.
You can use these binoculars in low light, but they will be ineffective at night. I wouldn’t recommend the Apeman BC 100 for those who use binoculars primarily for stargazing. I would also mention that the smart phone adapter and tripod are not included as a package and need to be purchased separately.
These binoculars have a 10x magnification and a 42mm objective lens. Combine these features with the Bak-4 prism technology and the ZoomX will enable you to view razor sharp images with superior clarity and brightness. The lenses have been multi-coated to improve vibrancy and the wide objective lens means you will get great results even in low light. The field of view is 305ft/1000yds enabling a wide scope of vision which literally broadens your horizons.
The body is unique in its design, and steers away from the more traditional round look. The entire body is coated in rubber, so that it is comfortable and will not slip even in damp or wet conditions. The ZoomX are also 100% waterproof and fog proof.
The focus system is conveniently located in two places. There is one on the right eye ring, and the other in the center. The eyecups also twist up and down and are simple to use.
The ZoomX is compact and lightweight, weighing just 1.2lbs. It will tuck away easily in a small bag and is easy to carry. It comes with it’s own carry case, neck strap, cleaning cloth, lens caps and smartphone adaptor.
Features I like
The ZoomX 007 binoculars have superior waterproof capabilities. They would be great for people who love to get out on the water, viewing water birds or dolphin and whale watching. The ZoomX can be confidently taken in and around the water and used in heavy rain conditions. The body has been fully sealed and they are 100% waterproof to a depth of 1.5m for a total of 30 minutes.
They have also been nitrogen purged which provids the best protection against all types of moisture, so you know that they will not fog up even in the most humid climates or rainy conditions.
The ZoomX 007 is really great quality for an affordable price, proving that a lower price tag doesn’t mean you have to compromise on quality.
I love the idea of being able to take a photo of something that would normally be out of my reach and out of focus. Be sure to check that the adapter is compatible with your smart phone. The ZoomX adapter will suit:
- iPhone models ranging from X to 6s including Plus models
- Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, S7, S8, S8Plus, S9 and Note
- Other brands such as LG, HTV and Sony are compatible also
The Aurosports binoculars are great for bird watching, sporting events and music concerts. They can be used during the day and also for low lighting conditions like dusk and dawn. They have a large field of view at 362ft/1000yds and provide brilliant focus. With 10x magnification with 25mm objective lens you will be able to view your target with incredible clarity and brightness.
The objective lenses have a full HD green film that has superior light transmittance, making the Aurosport effective in low light conditions.
The Bak-4 prism and multi-coated lenses gives the user great precision and razor sharp images. You can adjust the focus in two handy locations, either on the right eye ring or in the center.
The Aurosports binoculars are water resistant and can handle being subjected to light splashing and light rain. You should avoid use in heavy rain conditions or full submersion in liquid.
These binoculars are covered in an ABS plastic that is durable and non-slip. The coating provides protection from minor bumps and scratches. It’s also skid-proof and can withstand tough environments and weather conditions.
Features I like
The Aurosports binoculars are incredibly lightweight enabling you to carry them with you wherever you want to go. While they are lightweight, they are also incredibly tough with the ABS protective rubber coating. These two factors make the Aurosports binoculars a great choice for both adults and children.
The Aurosports binoculars come with an anti-slip strap to give the user added peace of mind and guards against accidently dropping it. It comes with a portable bag for safe storage and travelling as well as a dust cover. There is a specialized cleaning cloth that will help to keep your lenses clear and in great shape.
These binoculars have a close focus range of 3 meters, which will allow you to view great detail on targets that may be closer.
The Aurosports binoculars have not been nitrogen purged. This may result in some fogging and/or condensation in humid climates or extremely temperatures.
The Bushnell 130521 Spectator is made of the highest quality materials and represents great value for money. These binoculars have an extra wide objective lens measuring 30mm with 4 x magnification capabilities.
The fields of view is 900ft/1000yds giving the user an amazingly wide scope. The optics are multi-coated for great light transmission which results in bright images that are vibrant and clear. The eyecups fold down and the focus-free system means no manual focusing so you can stay glued to any quick moving action.
Weighing just 14.5 ounces the Bushnell 130521 Spectator is portable and easy to maneuver. It comes with a neck strap to give added safety and protection against dropping and potential breakage. The Bushnell 130521 Spectator also comes with a carry case for storage when not in use and for travelling.
The Bak-4 prisim technology insures your view is crystal clear and razor sharp. Bushnell 130521 Spectator is built to be taken out and about and to a variety of events.
Features I like
The stand out feature of these Bushnell binoculars is the incredibly wide field of view. At 900ft/1000yrds the Bushnell is nearly three times wider than most other binoculars.
The wide field of view on these binoculars would really shine in situations where high magnification is not required. Imagine viewing large sporting fields and racecar tracks. You would see more of the action in one frame than you would with a smaller field of view. At music concerts or theatre shows, you would be able to view the entire stage within the one frame.
I also love the convenience that the automatic free focus provides. In situations where you don’t require impeccable details, manually focusing can be a pain. This also provides the user with the freedom to be in the moment, and enjoy the stage show, concert or sporting event without having to worry about the focus.
Of all the binoculars on this list, the Bushnell Spectator has the lowest magnification. This is purely because it is not designed to provide incredible detail of one target in particular. It is designed to provide a wider scope within the view. These binoculars will certainly suit someone who regularly attends large sporting events or music concerts, however if you require more magnification for bird watching or hunting wildlife, this may not be the product for you.
What to Look for When Choosing the Best Binoculars Under 100 Dollars
Lens Coating & Quality
The coating on the lenses is important as this directly affects the quality of images you see. The lens coating reduces the amount of lighted reflected, and allows the maximum amount of light to enter. A higher quality lens will ensure the image is free from irregularities and has good contrast. The highest quality lenses will give you better results in dim conditions such as dawn and dusk. The will ensure that your images are bright and vibrant.
This refers to how far you will be able to “zoom in.” The higher the number of magnification is the more powerful zoom. Magnification is express as a X and if binoculars have a 10x, it means that your binoculars will be able to increase the size of your target by ten.
Objective Lens Diameter
This is the lens that allows light to enter the binoculars. The bigger the objective lens, the more light that will filter through into the binoculars. Again you should be considering how you plan to use your binoculars. If you hunt or bird watch during the day, the len size will be less important to someone who uses binoculars in low light conditions. Generally speaking, if you plan on using your binoculars in low light, you should be choosing the binoculars whose objective lens is on the larger end of the scale.
Field of View
Field of view refers to the diameter of the area that you will see through the binoculars. The larger the field of view, the more you will see in the frame. You should consider what you primarily use your binoculars for. The field of view will make little difference to an avid bird watcher who wishes to view small targets at one time. While a sports fan might prefer to sacrifice some of the detail, to have the capability of viewing the entire field in one frame. If you only use your binoculars for viewing in large arenas or stages, go for the binoculars that have the largest field of view.
You should consider the weight of your binoculars before making your purchase. Think about how you use your binoculars and how do they travel with you. If you normally hike with a lot of gear, getting a model that is lightweight might be important to you. If you’re not normally carrying them a lot, weight might not be a consideration. Do think about how you hold your binoculars also. If you are watching a long sporting match, your arms and wrist may get tired from holding a heavier set of binoculars. Lighter models will also be more comfortable and suitable for children.
Even if your binoculars are under 100 dollars that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be looked after. Despite the budget price tags, the binoculars on my list are of high quality and should be treated as such. Look for binoculars that have lens caps to protect the glass from minor damage and scratches. Scratches can seriously obstruct you view and can become really annoying. A neck strap will ensure that if you do accidently drop your binoculars, they wont have far to fall, and you can avoid potential breakages.
Should I spend over $100 on binoculars?
There really is no need to spend more than 100 dollars. You will be able to find the combination of quality and technology without spending a fortune. You really need to identify your plans for your binoculars, and how and when they will be primarily used. This will ensure that you get the right model and features for your needs, for less than 100 of course.
When choosing the best binoculars under 100 dollars, it can get a little confusing. There is a lot of specifications and technology jargon to understand. However you can keep it relative simple.
- Magnification equals zoom ability.
- The larger the objective lens, the better it will preform in low light.
- Sports and music fans should look for a large field of view.
- Water lovers should look at waterproof models too.
Last but not least, stick to your budget. You don’t have to spend over 100 dollars to get a great quality product. Any one of these models listed here in my review will provide you with great binoculars and value for money.