Best 10×42 Binoculars: Add Clarity to Your Outdoor Adventures

These top 10x42 binoculars offer excellent magnification

Entering our 7th season of /DRIVE on NBC Sports, and with millions of YouTube and Facebook followers, The Drive is a leading authority of all things automotive.

The Drive on NBCThe Drive on YouTubeThe Drive on Facebook

  • Product Network

    13 Products

  • Clock

    8 Hours

  • Reviews

    11 Reviews

How We Decided

The Drive and its partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.Read more.

PUBLISHED ON November 27, 2019

Both outdoor and wildlife lovers find 10x42 binoculars to be an excellent choice when viewing distant objects. While the 10x zoom provides the right amount of magnification, the 42-millimeter diameter of the objective lens ensures brighter images. Most units with this specification are compact and lightweight, which makes them portable and easy to handle. In this buying guide, we discuss the three best options from a wide variety of products.

  • Best Overall
    Nikon MONARCH 7 10x42 Binocular
    The Monarch 7 delivers a crisp and bright image even during twilight hours. It offers a wide field of view at 6.7 degrees. The good ergonomics ensures ease of use.
    The high-quality prism coatings deliver great images free from distortion. The effective 17.1-millimeter eye relief is sufficient for eyeglass wearers. It also has a waterproof and fog- proof construction.
    The weight is on the higher side, making it a heavier option for backpackers. The diopter does not have a locking mechanism.
  • Best Value
    Gosky 10x42 Roof Prism Binoculars
    This compact binocular is an ideal choice for any excursion. The lens is coated with multiple green film layers for better image clarity. The design is weatherproof with effective O-ring sealing.
    The dielectric coated BAK4 prism offers good image clarity. A rubber armor provides additional durability. There is also a smartphone adapter to use the phone screen for viewing through the binoculars.
    The smartphone adapter may not be compatible with all phones. The viewing angle is not wide enough. The unit is not ideal for people with smaller faces.
  • Honorable Mention
    Maven C1 10X42mm Binoculars
    The extra-low dispersion glass allows these binoculars to deliver a crystal-clear image. The color rendition and contrast are also impressive through a Schmidt-Pechan prism system.
    The multi-coated lenses offer great light transmission and are also scratch-resistant. The polymer frame is lightweight but durable. The unit comes with an absolute lifetime warranty.
    The rubber caps on the eyepieces can come off. The polymer chassis may not be durable in all conditions. The diopter locking feature is absent.

Why Trust Us

All of our reviews are based on market research, expert input, and practical experience with each product we include. This way, we offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.

Learn more


  • Binoculars with a 10x level of magnification magnify the subject by a factor of 10. Higher levels of magnification are available, but anything above 12x will need the help of a tripod or image stabilization to produce a clear image.
  • Make sure that the binoculars have a sufficient amount of eye relief so that you can use them comfortably. If you use eyeglasses, retract the binocular eye caps to their minimum position and check for adequate eye relief.
  • The lens coating on the glasses is very important as it prevents the reflection of light and produces a sharper image. The multi-coated and fully multi-coated lenses are the best options for better image clarity and contrast.


Q: What is the best prism type to choose when buying binoculars?

A: The two basic prism types that are used in binoculars are roof prisms and Porro prisms. The roof prisms offer better light transmission, but they are relatively expensive. For budget-conscious buyers, binoculars with Porro prisms are a better option.

Q: Are binoculars with a large field of view a better choice?

A: Binoculars with the largest field of view are always a better choice as they open up a larger area in your field of vision. A large objective lens provides a bigger field of view, whereas higher magnifications reduce it. For the same magnification levels, binoculars with a bigger lens will offer a larger field of view.

Q: How do I keep the binoculars clean after a trip?

A: A binocular’s casing can be cleaned with a piece of cloth. The lenses need careful handling as the coating may get damaged by the rough edges. Wiping with a microfibre cloth in gentle, circular motions is a good way of cleaning the lenses. In some cases, you may need to use a special cleaning fluid recommended by the manufacturer.

Final Thoughts

With its superior image quality and spot-on ergonomics, the Nikon MONARCH 7 10x42 Binocular is our top pick. The wider depth of view and a good close focus distance makes it a good choice from all aspects. With a compact design and solid construction, the Gosky 10x42 Roof Prism Binocular is a good choice at a low price.