Comes with a tripod and has a great light transmitting coefficient, allowing using it even in dim lighting.
The tripod is easy to tip over as the monocular as the gravity center is closer to the front.
Top-rate monocular, with weather-resistant qualities and a durable body, that shows a bright, crisp picture. A perfect choice for bird watchers and hunters.
82 m / 1000 m
One of the smallest monoculars with a 10x magnification ratio.
Low light transmittance, owing to the small eyepiece diameter.
Celestron 71210 is a compact solution for bird watching or sports events. The body has a great grip and waterproof qualities, making it suitable for use under any weather conditions.
Multi-coated optical glass / BaK-4
101 m / 1000 m
A rich package bundle includes many items at a low price.
This monocular is more suitable for observation of static objects because of its narrow field of view.
Boshile 10X42 monocular comes with many accessories, required for observing static subjects. It boasts a good price/quality ratio that might surprise you.
Multi-coated optical glass / BaK-4
20 m / 1000 m
Amazon's 30-day return policy
Boasts a far-seeing magnification ratio and great light transmittance ratio, thanks to the Fully multi-coated glass.
As it features PORRO prism system, this monocular is bulkier and heavier than many other models.
The BNISE monocular will become an optimal choice for watching distant objects even under faint lighting conditions, owing to great characteristics, superb magnification ratio, and convenient body design.
Fully multi-coated optical glass / BaK-4
108 m / 1000 m
Features a wide angle of view, allowing tracking more objects at once.
The focusing ring is a bit stiff to turn around.
This MAOZUA Monocular is a one-size-fits-all solution for any category of users. It's relatively compact, has decent optic specs, and weather-proof qualities.
Fully multi-coated optical glass / BaK-4
125 m / 1000 m
Amazon's 30-day return policy
What is a Monocular
Without a doubt, one of the most popular portable optic device for looking into the distance is binoculars. However, such field glasses usually have a massive weight and size. The monoculars solve this problem as they share the same working principle but have only one ocular, hence the name. They are lighter, take twice less space but, unlike spy-glass, they don't have a telescopic body. Not to mention the price. At a cost of one pair of binoculars, you can buy two monoculars for different purposes!
If you also need a more powerful optical device for a day-time observation, we recommend you to take a look at our selection of the best binoculars.
Did you know that night vision devices come not only in a form of goggles? Check them out in our review of the best night vision devices.
What Features to Compare
We cannot stress enough that the first thing you should look for in any optical device is optics specs. Monoculars are not an exception. As a rule of thumb, the bigger the outer lens is, the more light it collects. The light refracts into the ocular lens, and compressed, magnified picture can be seen through it. There are different magnifying monoculars that have a small zoom – 2-4x, medium – 5-8x, or large – 10-22x. The higher this value is, the closer and bigger a distant object appears.
Another feature in optics is a coating. This refers to layers of anti-reflective coating on an objective lens. The glass itself reflects a lot of light, but with such coating, more light comes through, meaning you are getting more detailed, brighter view of objects. Multi-coated and fully multi-coated lenses are more preferred than single coated. Monoculars can also be assembled in accordance with different prism systems. For instance, ROOF prisms are more compact than PORRO, plus usually somewhat lighter.
The last but not least is the glass type. Usually, it's BK-7 or BaK-4. Those refer to a form of an eyeglass lens. In the case of monoculars, Bak-4 is a preferable choice as it gives a slightly better picture than the BK-7 type of glass. The latter has a prism glass in the form of a square, what may create a small chromatic aberration. However, BaK-4 has just a slightly higher refractive index than BK-7, so in both cases, you'll get a great result.
Monoculars often come in a body of a tube; therefore they're easy to hold in one hand. Manufacturers come up with different surface materials and finish for even steadier grip: wavy or knurled, dimpled or pimpled, rubber or plastic, you name it. A high-quality monocular should also have waterproof and dirtproof qualities. And in order to protect the inner side of the glass from fogging, special transparent gas is pumped and sealed inside the body. Among other features, there may be adjusting rings with or without dials for better focusing on a target.
The size and weight of a monocular are also critical parameters, especially, if you are going to climb up a mountain or go camping. Monoculars are often chosen because they are smaller and lighter than binoculars. Therefore, look for lightweight, compact models. Monoculars usually come with a case or a carrying pouch for transportation, neck or wrist straps, protection lens caps, a cleaning cloth, etc. What’s more, the eye lens may have a rangefinder reticle, just like a sniper sights, or even a built-in compass that comes in handy if you like camping or fishing on a boat.
Polaris Optics High Powered Monocular
Rediscover the World
The Polaris Explorer monocular will surely show you the world and all its hidden beauty. When travelling, a lot of tiny but important details slip out of our eyespot merely for the natural limitation of the human sight. With the Polaris Explorer monocular, you won't miss a spot and discover them anew. The Polaris Explorer monocular will be of great help for travellers and bird watchers, thanks to its exclusive image specifications and fully multi-coated glass capable of transmitting a great flow of light through it. The monocular boasts 12x magnification power that allows watchers to see clearly the objects 300 m away as if they were located 25 m away from you.
Tested by Nature
The Polaris Optics has created a sophisticated, yet easy-to-use monocular. It’s fully waterproof, while the interior is filled with gas to prevent fogging of glass from the inside. That means the lens will always stay clear and dry when the temperature changes rapidly, and can be used under the rain. At mere 14 oz. the monocular comfortably lies in a hand. Besides, it also comes with a pouch for transportation and a tripod.
The tripod is an awesome inclusion for those of us, who likes bird watching. For example, when you find a beautiful bird sitting in the nest, just mount the monocular on a tripod, point at it and you can share the view with a friend or just gaze at the bird, without tiring your hand by holding a monocular for a long time.
More Products to Consider
You can upgrade your Polaris Explorer monocular to magnifying camera lens for your mobile phone. You might find a universal cell phone adapters for monoculars. After assembling them into one unit, you will be able to not only take photos but also record videos to share them with your friends later.
Vast Possibilities in Compact Body
Сelestron company has more than 50-year experience in the field of optical instruments manufacturing. This pretty monocular is very compact and convenient to hold with both hands, owing to its ergonomic grip. On the outside, the body is covered with rubber for additional protection. The flat bottom part has a rough texture to prevent the device from slipping out of user's hands seeing it's being used in the rain or seized with sweaty hands. Speaking of the weather, the monocular body is waterproof sealed. This also provides the Celestron 71210 anti-fog qualities under the condition of a rapid temperature change. Thus, the monocular can be adapted for hunting or bird watching during rainfall seasons.
The optics here is also decent quality regardless the size and smaller glasses of the monocular. The eyepiece makes 2.5mm in diameter, while the objective lens nevertheless makes 25mm for better light transmission and features a multi-coated BaK-4 glass. Additionally, the monocular delivers a tenfold magnification, making it optimal for shooting ranges or watching sports matches as well.
UrChoiceLtd® Dual Focus Monocular
More Equipment at Less Cost
10X42 Boshile Monocular has several aces up its sleeve to show us all. Firstly, it has quality optic characteristics. A multi-coated glass transmits decent image even under dim conditions or stormy weather. The body is fully waterproof, so neither rain nor seawater sprays may damage it. We also liked the fact the objective glass is installed deep inside the housing and comes in the set with a protective cap. Thus, there are fewer chances it might get scratched or broken even if fallen to the ground.
However, it looks like a wide ring around the objective lens has affected the field of view: at 1000 m distance from a subject, you are getting only 20 m of wide picture. On one hand, you're likely to lose your target more often and spend time searching for it again. On the other hand, the included tripod allows you to fix and lock the device to aim it at a specific object, like for example, birds' nests and feeders, a school of fish, etc. At a slightly narrower viewing angle and 10x magnification, this monocular will work better for observing calm animals in their habitat conditions or watching some static objects rather than sports even. To sum up, the combination of decent optics characteristics, rich package content and a relatively low price make it a safe choice for the beginning wildlife enthusiasts and hikers.
BNISE 13x50 Monocular
Looking Into Details
At first glance, the BNISE monocular may seem quite large and cumbersome, compared to some other models. Nonetheless, it features a convenient body design with the rugged sides for better handling. The major feature here is the optics. This model has a great 13x magnification ratio, allowing you to check out the smallest details of your objects at very long distances. The image quality is absolutely wonderful. At 50mm objective lens and 5mm ocular lens, it has a comparatively wide angle of view: 108 m at 1000 m away. Additionally, a fully multi-coated glass has a great light transmittance ratio. Therefore, you are provided with a crisp picture even in low light. The scope also has a reticle for measuring the distance between the objects. The only downside is that the PORRO lens systems are not too light and can be somewhat bulky. The monocular weighs almost half a kilo and is pretty big. However, its advantageous optic specs make it a great choice for customers who are not averted by its dimensions. As for the intended use, this BNISE monocular is great for all: from sports events to wildlife observations in any conditions.
MAOZUA Monocular Telescope Dual Focus Adjustable
The MAOZUA monocular is suitable for any task: watching birds, concerts, sports events or simply observing nature in the nearest part or forest. Considering its 12x magnification ratio, the device boasts incredible 125 m field of view at 1000 m distance. That way, you can observe many moving objects at once or easily pick up one of them and focus on it.The design is pretty standard for monoculars. The compact metal housing has a rubberized coating for a steadier grip. Furthermore, it has a screw hole at the bottom for the tripod that comes in the set. The package also includes a hand strap, a cleaning cloth, and a carrying pouch. The monocular also has a built-in compass on the top for quick land and sea navigation that may come in handy for fishermen and birds enthusiasts that like to track down things like birds migrations or hunting routes. The waterproof and fogproof qualities are also helpful for harsh weather conditions and sudden temperature drops. On the whole, this is a solid choice for any person who seeks a reliable, multi-purpose monocular.
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