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Getting Back Into Birding & Nature Viewing! Best Binoculars?

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I'm on a mission to get some new binoculars as I'm getting back into enjoying nature & stopping to smell the roses. Recommendations on best magnification for a set of binoculars? I'm considering either Bushnell, Athlon Optics OR Nikon. I've been reading reviews but hesitant without some guidance. Any help would be appreciated! Until then, I'll continue my homework! Lol! - Sarah

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If you have the money, the 8.5 x 40 Swarovski was a total shocker. Couldn’t believe how good it is. Another birder told me to get the best you can afford.

 

 

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This is a hard question to answer with limited information. Based on the post title "Best" binocular would indicate you're game for premium level where I'd agree with the above post (though I'd go 10x). But all of the glass in that price range are fantastic (can't go wrong with Leica or Zeiss etc.).

I think a more accurate assumption based off your selections you're reading would be what is a good binocular for getting back into birding (correct me if I'm wrong).  The best you can afford like mentioned above is a fairly good way to approach it, but it is a very personal decision and you should ALWAYS test them out before you jump in. Go to an outdoor store Cabela's, LL Bean, something and look through them. I actually asked a clerk once if I could just shop around LL Bean with them for a few hours to get a feel of what it's like to have them around my next for hours on end. 

I personally am a fan of the Nikon Monarch series. For a reasonably priced set of optics I think they perform beyond their price point. I haven't had much experience with the other two brands you mentioned so I won't comment. 

Hope that helps! You just don't want to get some binoculars that have a small annoyance (like weight or ergonomics) such that you won't take them with you often. 

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I second the nikon monarchs.  They were my 2nd set of binoculars, a "step-up"  after a pair of bushnells didn't quite hit my expectations.  

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I bought a pair of Nikon Monarch 5   10x42's  a few months ago and was so impressed with them compared to my other 20+ year old binocs that I ended up also buying a pair of Monarch 7  8x30's which are lighter in weight.  For the price they are very good, but you can spend a lot more if you want to.  The higher end Zeiss, Swaroski, and Leica may be worth it to you.

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