Why do you need a powerful monocular and what exactly are you trying to use it for? These are a couple of questions that you should ask and get clear in your head before you make the commitment to buy one because it may well be that bigger is not necessarily better.

Although using the most powerful possible monocular may seem to be the most logical choice if you want to quickly magnify your surroundings. But not everyone needs a really powerful monocular. For starters, there is a trade-off when you’re using magnification of more than 10x and that comes in the form of a greatly reduced Field of Vision. You can offset that with a larger objective lens, of course, but you’re then getting into the question of whether binoculars are more appropriate.

On the other hand, there are quite a few compact monoculars that also provide plenty of viewing power and are worth taking into consideration.

Listed below is a selection of monoculars that have been designed to deliver power and clarity while also offering a reasonable Field of View to go with it. In this respect, we have determined that a truly powerful monocular not only magnifies but also provides an outstanding user experience too.

Comparison List of the Most Powerful Monoculars

Make / Model

Mag.
10x

Obj. Lens
25mm

Length
4.29"

Weight
3.1oz

MSRP
$399.99

Mag.
12x

Obj. Lens
50mm

Length
6.4"

Weight
14oz

MSRP
$199.99

Mag.
10x

Obj. Lens
36mm

Length
4.9"

Weight
9.7oz

MSRP
$149.99

Mag.
10x

Obj. Lens
42mm

Length
5.4"

Weight
13.2oz

MSRP
$319.99

Mag.
10x

Obj. Lens
42mm

Length
5.6"

Weight
12.3oz

MSRP
$489.00

Mag.
12x

Obj. Lens
50mm

Length
5.31"

Weight
13.85oz

MSRP
$79.99

Mag.
10x

Obj. Lens
42mm

Length
6.25"

Weight
17.6oz

MSRP
$79.99

Mag.
10x

Obj. Lens
42mm

Length
6.1"

Weight
11.2oz

MSRP
$59.99

Mag.
12x

Obj. Lens
40mm

Length
6.6"

Weight
10.7oz

MSRP
$26.99

Mag.
10x

Obj. Lens
25mm

Length
5.0"

Weight
4.3oz

MSRP
$40.00

Detailed Descriptions of Powerful Monoculars

Now that we have had a chance to take a brief side-by-side look at the monoculars that are among the most powerful of those that are commonly available on the market today we will get a more detailed look at each model. Below is a short review of each monocular along with product specifications and listed features. Read through the details of each to get a better understanding of what it is that differentiates each product.

Zeiss 10x25 T* Design Selection Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 10x
  • Objective Diameter: 25mm
  • Field of View: 264 feet / 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 15mm
  • Exit Pupil: 2.5 mm
  • Close Focus: 14.78 feet
  • Dimensions (HxW): 4.29” x 1.3”
  • Weight: 3.1 oz

Not only is this one of the more compact monoculars available but it is also one of the most powerful. It has 10x magnification combined with a 25mm objective lens. This means that the Field of View over 1,000 feet is 264 feet.

The company advises that its best uses are for birdwatching and nature observation, so it is perfect for intensive outdoor use.

It’s big plus is the brightness with which it displays as well was the clarity of the image through the T* lens. This lens is a feature and has a patented T* anti-reflective multi-layer coating for extremely high transmission and low reflex susceptibility. What this means is that it returns images that are particularly high resolution with almost perfect sharpness.

It is sealed for water resistance to the extent of providing protection from heavy rain and it will remain functional through temperatures ranging from -4 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit.

The monocular lives up to the high standards that has made Zeiss a leading producer of quality optical devices for years.

Wingspan Explorer 12X50 High Powered Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 12x
  • Objective Diameter: 50mm
  • Field of View: 246 feet / 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 15mm
  • Exit Pupil: 4.2 mm
  • Close Focus: 2.5 meters
  • Dimensions (HxW): 6.4” x 1.9”
  • Weight: 14 oz

This is a monocular that boasts 12x magnification through a 50mm objective lens. It is touted by the company as the most powerful hand held monocular available and, judging by the competition, they could just about be right.

It has been designed to produce a clear image when targeting distant objects and even though the magnification is large, the Field of Vision is very reasonable at 246 feet at 1,000 yards. The lens is fully multi-coated to provide the necessary clarity and the prism type is a Bak-4.

The exterior has been given a tough and durable coating with a non-slip grip to keep it secure in your hand. There is also the ability to attach a tripod stand to allow for more stable hands-free viewing.

This monocular is larger and heavier than most, having been built as a heavy-duty piece of equipment that can be relied upon in all long-distance viewing processes.

Vortex 10x36 Solo Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 10x
  • Objective Diameter: 36mm
  • Field of View: 325 feet / 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 15mm
  • Exit Pupil: 3.6 mm
  • Close Focus: 16.4 feet
  • Dimensions (HxW): 4.9” x 2.6”
  • Weight: 9.7 oz

This is nice and compact and comfortable to use with 10x magnification and an objective lens diameter of 36mm. It is a powerful little monocular that has quite a good sized Field of View which measures 325 feet @ 1,000 yards.

It hits all of the essentials in terms of the features you would expect in a high-performance monocular. The lens is fully multi-coated to allow increased light transmission and there are anti-reflective coatings on air-to-glass surfaces. It is waterproof with o-ring seals to keep out moisture and dust particles. Fogproofing has been included through nitrogen gas purging.

The exterior features a rubber armor non-slip grip that protects it and helps to ensure you don’t drop it. The additional extras that come with the monocular are a neck lanyards, a utility clip and a carrying case.

Bushnell Legend Ultra HD 10x42mm Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 10x
  • Objective Diameter: 42mm
  • Field of View: 340 feet / 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 15.2mm
  • Exit Pupil: 4.2 mm
  • Close Focus: 6.5 feet
  • Dimensions (HxW): 5.4” x 4.0”
  • Weight: 13.2 oz

The Legend Ultra HD monocular has been designed with the purpose of providing the hunter with the ideal piece of equipment that will help to pinpoint anything from a whitetail to a bird. The 10x magnification will bring distant objects into sharp focus and the BaK-4 Prism with fully multi-coated glass will be extremely clear and sharp.

You can expect to maintain optimal clarity out to around 150 yards and the ability to adjust the focus with a single finger by using the dial on top of the unit typifies its ease of use when out in the field.

On top of the clarity of the image, the unit itself is compact and lightweight so it can be slipped straight into any pocket or unobtrusively into a daypack. IT is possible to use this either as a handheld unit or it may be mounted to a tripod.

There are also options available such as a Mil-Hash reticle for tactical applications and it comes with a built-in Picatinny rail which means easy mounting of accessories. This unit is fully waterproof and fogproof and it has a tough durable shell that will ensure it will last in the field.

Opticron DBA Oasis S-Coat 10x42 Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 10x
  • Objective Diameter: 42mm
  • Field of View: 315 feet / 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 19mm
  • Exit Pupil: 4.2 mm
  • Close Focus: 9.0 feet
  • Dimensions (HxW): 5.6” x 2.0”
  • Weight: 12.3 oz

This is a monocular that has been designed for people looking for the highest possible performance and it has been built in a compact roof prism design. It offers magnification of 10x to bring objects up close and with the 42mm objective lens you will get a Field of View of 315 feet at 1,00 yards.

The body of the monocular is fully armoured for greater protection and it has a ribbed focus band to make it easy to bring the image to full clarity. The lens features S-type multi-coating and this will ensure the best possible clarity and contrast no matter what time of day or how bright the external light is.

If you feel you need some help in keeping it steady, the monocular can also be mounted on a tripod using the ¼” thread for a secure connection.

Gosky 12x50 High Power Prism Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 12x
  • Objective Diameter: 50mm
  • Field of View: 289 feet / 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 17mm
  • Exit Pupil: 4.2 mm
  • Dimensions (HxW): 5.31” x 2.95”
  • Weight: 13.85 oz

It’s actually in the name of the model so there was no question that the Gosky was going to be included. It has a very healthy 12x magnification and when that is combined with a 50mm objective lens diameter you certainly have a monocular that will bring distant objects closer.

The outside is solid with a rubber armor coating for greater comfort when holding it. The inside features a large Bak-4 prism and a multi-coated green objective lens coating. This means the images will be delivered in bright contrast and will be sharply defined.

The monocular is waterproof and dust-proof thanks to the O-ring seals. It is designed for use either with or without glasses and there is a mount thread that will allow it to be mounted to a tripod. The big draw with this monocular also comes down to price with the MSRP at only $79.99.

Barska 10x42 Level Waterproof Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 10x
  • Objective Diameter: 42mm
  • Field of View: 305 feet / 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 13.6mm
  • Exit Pupil: 4.2 mm
  • Close Focus: 13 feet
  • Dimensions (HxW): 6.25” x 3.0”
  • Weight: 17.6 oz

This is a typically small and portable monocular that has been given a toughened rubber coating for added protection. The body also has a no-slip diamond textured grip to make handling easier, particularly when dealing with it single-handed.

This is a 10x42mm model and offers the kind of power that most hunters, birdwatchers or nature lovers are looking for. The field of view is quite generous at 305 feet at 1,000 yards. Clarity of contrast are maximised through anti-reflection multicoated optics and a BK-7 prism. The focus knob is located in the center of the monocular to make it easy to access with one hand.

Waterproofing and fog-proofing has been provided through the inclusion of O-ring seals at all necessary places. It has a standard ¼” thread tripod mount built in making it possible to use it mounted on a tripod. For added protection it comes with a carry case and a wrist strap.

Orion 10x42 Waterproof Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 10x
  • Objective Diameter: 42mm
  • Field of View: 309 feet / 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 17mm
  • Exit Pupil: 4.2 mm
  • Close Focus: 2 feet
  • Dimensions (HxW): 6.1” x 2.25”
  • Weight: 11.02 oz

This is another good quality compact monocular that has been given the additional feature of being waterproof to the point where it may be used in all types of adverse weather conditions. This comes from the rubber-armored construction that also makes it more comfortable to handle.

The 10x magnification means that it is a good monocular for use when viewing wildlife and landscape over a considerable distance. The 42mm objective lens means that you re offered a substantial field of view through a lens that is multi-coated allowing maximum light through for a bright view.

The eye relief is nice a long at 17mm and this means that eyeglass wearers have been catered to. The unit features a twist-up rubber eyeguard that will allow the eye to be properly positioned.

This is a high power monocular with a tough and durable casing that is protected from the rain and other wet conditions. It comes with a removable carrying strap and has a tripod adapter socket that will be usable by any tripod that has a ¼”-20 threaded post.

Ohuhu 12x40 Mini Waterproof Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 12x
  • Objective Diameter: 40mm
  • Field of View: 62 feet / 1000 yards
  • Dimensions (HxW): 6.6” x 2.5”
  • Weight: 10.7 oz

With the Ohuhu monocular we are getting right into the budget are of the market. This is a high magnification monocular with 12x magnification but is made using materials that are not quite as durable or sturdy as some of the others examined above.

The monocular is suited for all types of long-distance viewing such as bird watching or hunting and also comes with a tripod to help with stability while in use. It has been noted, however, that the monocular is quite heavy for the tripod and this can cause it to overbalance so care must be taken.

This is a monocular that performs quite well over shorter distances out to around 100 meters. It provides a clear picture and the 12x magnification brings objects into good focus. It is constructed from steel and comes with a hard rubber coating for added protection.

If you are looking for a superior quality monocular that will provide the highest possible resolution you should be looking at the higher priced options. This Ohuhu monocular provides amateur hikers and recreational users with a handy device that provides good clear magnification that is easy to use and quick to store away.

Carson Blackwave 10x25 Waterproof Monocular

Product Specifications

  • Magnification: 10x
  • Objective Diameter: 25mm
  • Field of View: 273 feet / 1000 yards
  • Dimensions (HxW): 5.0” x 1.5”
  • Weight: 4.3 oz

The Blackwave monocular has been designed to withstand the harsh conditions that are commonly experienced by hunters who forge out on day long expeditions in the middle of winter. It is streamlined and compact and features a rippled rubber grip to ensure it can be handled properly when in use.

It boasts 10x magnification which will bring distant objects into good focus , however the Objective Lens is not as large as some of the comparable models and this provides a Field of View of 273 feet at 1,000 yards. The glass clarity is quite good thanks to the BK-7 Prism and it has been nitrogen-filled to ensure it remains fog proof.

The monocular comes with a pouch, strap and lens cloth and it is backed by a No Fault Warranty that will ensure the monocular will be repaired or replaced by Carson should it be damaged for a cost of only 15 dollars.

Glossary - Understanding the Monocular Jargon

When browsing through the specifications provided for each of the monoculars that are examined on this page you will notice a few terms that may be a little unclear. The following guide is designed to clarify what is meant by the terms and will help to make the numbers more meaningful.

The first thing we will go through is the numbers that are often used to describe the monocular itself. As an example we can take a look at the Vortex 10x36 Solo Monocular.

The 10x36 part of this refers to the magnification power and the size of the objective lens, or front lens, of the monocular. You can use these numbers to get a quick idea of the power and likely performance of the monocular.

Magnification Power

In this example, the stated magnification of the Vortex Solo is 10x. This means that an object viewed through the lens will appear 10 times closer than if you were to look at with an unassisted eye. A deer that you spot standing 60 yards away will appear to be only 6 yards away when viewed through a lens that provides 10x magnification. As the number before the ‘x’ gets higher the more power it has and this means you will be able to view distant objects in greater detail.

Objective Lens

The 36 in our example describes the diameter of the front lens, in millimeters, of the monocular. This front lens, which is held the furthest away from the eye, is also known as the Objective Lens.

The wider the Objective Lens the more light that it is able to gather and the more light that enters the lens of the monocular, the better the view. This is particularly helpful if you are using it in low light conditions.

Hunters who want to get a wide view that is particularly sharp and are likely to be operating at either dawn or dusk will want to opt for a monocular with a larger objective lens, basically anything over 35mm.

Field of View (FOV)

The Field of View is a common measurement that is used to describe the amount of view you will be able to see through the lens from left to right. It is usually described as the number of feet you will see when an object is 1000 yards away.

The more powerful the magnification is of a monocular, the smaller the Field of View will be. Simply stated, a 8x monocular will have a larger Field of View than a 12x monocular.

This time we’ll use the Bushnell Legend Ultra Monocular and the Opticron DBA Oasis Monocular as examples. You might note that both of them have magnification and objective lenses of 10x42 but the Bushnell has a stated Field of View of 340 ft @ 1000 yards while the Opticron’s FOV is 315 ft @ 1000. As you can see, the objective lens does not determine the size of the Field of View. Instead it comes down to the way the eyepiece is constructed.

Many people prefer to have a wider Field of View over higher magnification power. Of course, the preference is up to the individual and will depend on how you wish to use your monocular.

There are many different applications for a good quality high power monocular and they are built with a range of options and features that take some careful consideration. Sometimes it is helpful to be pointed in one direction over another with specific suggestions.

Best Monocular For Hunting

When it comes to determining what might be the best monocular for hunting there are a number of important factors that should be considered. Simply buying a high power monocular will not necessarily solve the problem for you.

Power. That being said, a high powered monocular that is capable of providing magnification ranging from somewhere around the 8x to 10x magnifying power range is a great start. Viewing objects through lenses that provide this kind of magnification will bring distant objects into clear focus and will provide you with a great starting point.

Clarity. The optical clarity is the next factor that must be considered. Most lenses are now available multi-coated to enhance light transmission and improve clarity. A large objective lens will also mean more light will enter for an even better picture.

Weight. Another factor that plays an important role is the weight of the monocular. Weight will always play a role in determining which piece of equipment a hunter will use because whatever they use will have to be carried around all day. The weightier the devices, the more tired you will become as the day progresses. A good lightweight monocular that is also made from materials that will provide strength and durability is a great combination.

So, what is the monocular that provides all of the ideal factors that makes up the best monocular for hunting?

Vortex 10x36mm Solo Monocular

For its ease of use and the fact that it meets the three main criteria attributed to a good quality hunting monocular - power, clarity and weight - we can’t go past recommending the Vortex Solo as a great hunting monocular. When you consider the light weight and the clarity of the glass out to a reasonable distance and add to that the fact that it is very reasonably priced there is a lot to like about this unit. It is compact at under 5 inches in length and exhibits a wide field of view that will provide you with a great opportunity to bring game into sharp focus.

Best Value For Money Monocular

Once again we urge a little bit of caution with this category. Just because a monocular is cheap doesn’t mean that it is necessarily good value for money. You certainly don’t want to take that low-cost device out into the field and then find that you can barely see a thing through it!

So, the best monocular for the money is going to be one that provides you with a great deal of features, will be simple to use and will provide you with startling clarity, wide field of view and give you no trouble after repeated use.

And that great value monocular is…

Bushnell Legend Ultra HD

This monocular has been priced very well, and it is regularly available for far less than the company’s MSRP. It is powerful with 10x magnification and a capability of providing clear and sharp images out to 150 yards. In fact, you can scope out to 300 yards with slightly reduced clarity.

The device is nice and compact and very light so it can be placed in the pocket and picked up quickly when needed. It is also very easy to use with the focus knob accessible with a single finger.

No matter whether you are a hunter, a nature lover or simply out for a hike and need to identify distant objects, this is an affordable monocular that will provide you with a solid and reliable piece of equipment.

Top Rated Monocular

We have scouted around through as many customer reviews as we possibly could to get a feel for the monocular that most closely meets the needs of hunters. What we have come up with is the top rated monocular and the one that has come out on top is the Bushnell Legend Ultra HD, not surprisingly I guess seeing as how it is also considered to be the best value for money monocular.

It was a closely contested exercise with the Polaris Optics Explorer and the Gosky High Power Prism Monocular barely falling behind.

Bushnell Legend Ultra HD 10x42 Monocular

Reasons why this is the top rated monocular have been listed below based on what customers have noted as their reasons for giving it a positive rating.

  • Able to use it one-handed while carrying a compound bow in the other hand

  • Very easy to operate, particularly when it comes to focussing

  • Sturdy and durable because of the rubberized outer casing

  • Impressive clarity and brightness with no fog or fuzziness at the edges

  • It has an attached lens cover which is very convenient

  • Accessories such as the carry case, lanyard, lens cover are all greatly appreciated

For balance there are a few areas where customers believed the unit falls a little short and they have been listed below

  • It is a little larger and heavier than expected when compared to other makes and models

  • The lanyard assembly feels a little flimsy when the monocular has been attached

  • A few customers have marked it down on the basis of price, believing that it costs too much compared to the quality of the unit

Regardless of the type of activity you will be engaging in, whether it be in the outdoors and you are hunting, birdwatching or simply appreciating the landscape around you, or require indoor application such as at a concert or at the target range, a good quality monocular is going to come in very useful. Matching the model that is appropriate for your needs is part of the process and carefully considering how you plan to use it is significant.


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