Best Binoculars for Turkey Hunting of 2019 | Reviews
Turkey hunting, like deer hunting, involves some scouting and locating. You may be looking to get a better look at the turkeys early in the morning as these roost in the trees, or, even get one eye on them as they come down for their morning feed on the ground. Either way, you’ll want a good view of your potential turkey targets for hunting. A good pair of binoculars is essential to any level of turkey hunter and should be a part of any checklist when hunting these birds.
Binoculars are not cheap, therefore, you should look at your purchase as an investment that will assist you through many seasons worth of turkey hunts. We’ve done our research and compiled the best 5 binoculars for turkey hunting this season, with everything you should consider when making the purchase. Let us help you get a better view of these birds with the right pair below.
Min Focus Distance
Reviews of the Best Binoculars for Turkey Hunting
#1. Upland Optics Perception HD 10x42mm Hunting Binoculars
If you want to shell out a bit more money for the best in the price range, these HD hunting binoculars from Upland Optics are a prime choice. They boast a 10x magnification and 42mm lens objective, with a roughly 370-foot field of view at 1000 meters; that’s very impressive. The 17.2mm eye relief means they easy and comfortable to use, and they have an 8-foot close focus.
Optics and build quality are both great; they feature extra-low dispersion (ED) glass to minimize chromatic aberration and produce the clearest image possible. They’re also waterproof and fogproof, made from a tough, rubberized body with grip for wet conditions. They weigh less than 1.5 pounds, and you can feel comfortable throwing them into your pack. Upland Optics backs them up with a lifetime warranty, too.
With all that said, these binoculars do seem to suffer from the same problem as many others in the price range: quality control. When QC is on point, these are tough, waterproof and super-clear binoculars. When it’s not, however, they can be blurry, and knobs can be loose and fragile.
Otherwise, these are yet another excellent pair of optics for the money, with good magnification, lens size and clarity. They’re waterproof, fogproof and durable; just be sure to inspect your model for quality control. Thankfully, Upland Optics offers that lifetime warranty.
- Fogproof, waterproof, durable.
- 10x magnification, 42mm objective lens
- 8-foot close focus distance
- ED glass lens
- Lifetime Warranty
- Excellent Optics
Verdict: Best Overall
#2. Bushnell Legend Ultra HD
Bushnell is a top name in hunting equipment, and for good reason. These Legend Ultra HD binoculars pack excellent quality optics into a durable package. They use their ED Prime Extra-Low Dispersion fluorite glass to create perfectly-clear images free of chromatic aberration and fringing. It also features their RainGaurd HD waterproof coating, which helps water bead up and roll off, scattering less light for a clearer image. An ultra-wide band coating eliminates reflections and allows more light in for clearer, more detailed images.
The Legend Ultra HD boasts a 10x magnification and 42mm objective size, as well as a close focus of 6.5 feet, so it’s useful for hunting at all distances. Field of view is 340 feet at 100 yards. It uses a roof prism system and is cased in a lightweight magnesium chassis for durability.
Now, several people have complained about the binocular’s quality, despite Bushnell’s trusted name and warranty. Some find that certain components – such as the focusing knob – are too flimsy and loose and break easily. Others have found it difficult to control and focus the otherwise exceptional-quality optics. Quality control is an issue.
Still, Bushnell offers a warranty on these binoculars, and a proper pair offers fantastic optics and should last years. If you’re willing to deal with potential returns, they can be an excellent pair for the price.
- Excellent optics quality
- Close focus distance, wide FOV
- Waterproof glass and build
- Lightweight chassis
- 10x magnification, 42mm objective size
- Poor quality control, flimsy knobs, etc
- Difficult to focus on some models
#3. Vortex Optics Diamondback
With 10x magnification and 42mm objective, the Diamondback Roof Prism binoculars from Vortex Optics are a high-quality, reliable and reasonably-priced pair of the binoculars. They offer 15mm eye relief, an exit pupil of 4.2mm, and a field-of-view of 330 feet at 1000 yards. With a minimum focusing distance of only 6 feet, they’re also usable at very close range.
A dielectric, fully multi-coated lens means it performs excellently in low light, too. Build quality and durability on these binoculars is fantastic, too. They’re slim and sleek and rugged, unlike a lot of similar-looking models, with argon purging and a rubber armor for wateproofness and fogproofness, is almost any weather. They also have adjustable eyecups and IPD. Vortex also has fantastic customer support, so you’re set for life when you buy a pair of their binoculars.
A couple of problems relate to image quality and quality control. Many people have noticed blurring around the edges of the image, and purple fringes; this is a sign of a bad zoom optics.
Otherwise, these are a reasonably priced set of binoculars with good focus distance, magnification and field-of-view, as well as a sleek, very durable build.
- Rugged, durable, sleek build
- Waterproof and fogproof construction
- 6-foot minimum focusing distance
- 10x magnification, 42mm objective lens
- Wide field-of-view
- Excellent customer support and warranty
- Blurred edges, purple fringes
- Poor quality control
#4. Nikon 8252 ACULON
Another quality pair of binoculars at an even cheaper price, the Nikon ACULON offer 10x-22x magnification, as well as a 50mm lens objective. Zoom is easily adjusted with the Fingertip Zoom Control Knob, so you can customize your view without losing focus on the target. The multi-coated Eco Glass lenses help deliver very bright and clear images in all lighting conditions.
The whole construction is tight and high-quality, with a durable rubber-armored coating for non-slip grip and protection from drops and falls. And the Multi-Click rubber eyecups are adjustable to fit your face; simply turn and slide them to your liking. It uses a Porro prism design.
Cons? For one, it’s not very waterproof; we’d like to see a waterproof coating for the lens and seals for the chassis. Second, they have a very far minimum focusing range – about 49 feet. That’s much, much longer than the 6-foot focusing range found on other binoculars. They’re also tough to focus at certain levels of zoom.
The Nikon ACULON is another good option for high-quality, clear binoculars from a trusted brand. They’re quite durable, though not very waterproof or fogproof, which is a downer. But if you want adjustable focus, these will do the job.
- Excellent optics
- Easy, adjustable zoom
- Eco-Glass lenses
- Adjustable eyecups
- Not waterproof
- Long minimum focusing distance
- Difficult to focus at long distances
#5. Bushnell Trophy Binoculars
A good budget option from Bushnell, the Trophy binoculars offer 10x magnification and a 42mm lens objective. They use a roof prism, have a close focus of 10 feet, a field-of-view of 330 feet at 1000 meters, and an eye relief of 15.2 mm. On the top, there’s an easy-adjust focus knob so you can adjust images quickly and easily.
The Bushnell trophy are small, lightweight and tough, at 1.5 pounds. For the price, they offer pretty good image quality and zoom, and you can use them for most turkey hunting without any problems.
With that said, keep in mind they are not waterproof, and they tend to fog up pretty badly in humid or wet weather. Once water gets in on a rainy day, you won’t be doing much spotting with these; even the heat and sweat from your face and cause them to fog up. If you’re hunting in wet or humid environments, you might want to invest in something better and more waterproof.
- Lightweight, compact, tough. 1.5 pounds.
- 10x magnification, 42mm lens objective
- 330-foot field of view
- Easy-adjust focus knob
- Cheap and excellent value
- Lifetime guarantee from Bushnell
- Not waterproof
- Fog up badly
What to Look For in A Good Pair of Turkey Hunting Binoculars
This should be your first consideration. How much magnification do the binoculars have, and how far can you effectively see? Generally, a magnification of 7x or 10x is more than enough for most hunting, especially turkey hunting, which tends to be at close range. And remember, the more magnified the binoculars, the shakier the image will be.
Objective size is different from magnification, and is the second number you usually see paired with the magnification, e.g. 4x32, 7x10, etc. The objective size is the actual physical size of the lens – the diameter in millimeters. When a lens is 4x32, it has a 4x magnification, and a 32mm diameter lens. The larger the objective, the larger the image and the more detail you’ll be able to see. You’ll want to look for an objective size of at least 32 for hunting, but 40 or 42mm is generally better.
Minimum Focusing Distance
The minimum distance at which your binoculars can focus is also an important consideration; the higher the magnification, the generally higher the minimum focusing distance. And the further the distance, the more difficult it can be when a target runs in at short range. A focusing distance of 6-10 feet is the best you’ll probably find, but cheaper models will likely have much longer minimums.
Simply put, how much area can the binoculars see effectively from a specified distance (usually 1000 feet or 1000 meters). There’s no real standard for field-of-view – you just want to choose one that suits your hunting style and target. For turkey hunting, a mid-size field-of-view will probably work fine. Those hunting at longer range and with faster targets (say, deer) will likely want more.
The Final Say
All in all, we recommend the Upland Optics Perception HD binoculars as our top pick for a pair of turkey hunting binoculars. They rock a 10x42 lens, with ED glass, as well as 370-foot FOV at 1000 meters. They are durable, waterproof and fogproof, and built for hardcore turkey hunting in virtually weather. They are a bit pricey, but with a lifetime warranty, well worth the extra quality for a reliable pair of binoculars.
If you’re looking to save a bit of money, you could also go with the Bushnell Legend Ultra HD or Vortex Diamondbacks Optics, which both offer 10x42 lenses, durable construction, wide FOV and comfortable eye relief. Either will serve you well.
See a pair you think you’ll like? Go ahead and pick one up for yourself – your hunts will get that much easier.