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This category happens to be the most popular budget for serious hunters and optic users.
Laying down a grand on a pair of glasses might seem absurd to some.
But, to the hunter who needs precision for serious glassing, this is the budget with the best quality for the value.
Save up, look up, and tag it up this hunting season!
QUICK LIST: 7 Best Binoculars Under $1000 In 2022
- Leupold BX-4 Pro Guide HD 10X50
- Maven B1.2 10x42
- Vortex Kaibab 18x56
- Swarovski CL Companion Pocket 10X25
- Sig Sauer KILO3000 BDX 10X42
- Zeiss Conquest HD 10X42
- Vortex Razor HD 12X50
Our 7 Top Binos Less Than $1000
This high end category is more like the premium end of the mid-range binoculars - it's not quite worth selling off an organ for, but it's plenty good enough for a lot of hunters wanting a high-class optic.
Many hunters who are looking for a long-term binocular will pay within this price range. Why? Quality, durability, and brilliant glass is the name of the game, and this is exactly what we used as a standard to filter out the top binoculars for this high budget category.
So, if you're a serious hunter who knows his optics and can really appreciate the differences between $100 and $900 glasses, this reveal is for you.
|Leupold BX-4 Pro Guide HD 10X50||CHECK PRICE|
|Maven B1.2 10x42||CHECK PRICE|
|Vortex Kaibab 18x56||CHECK PRICE|
|Swarovski CL Companion Pocket 10X25||CHECK PRICE|
|Sig Sauer KILO3000 BDX 10X42||CHECK PRICE|
|Zeiss Conquest HD 10X42||CHECK PRICE|
|Vortex Razor HD 12X50||CHECK PRICE|
The Best Hunting Binoculars Under $1000
1. Leupold BX-4 Pro Guide HD 10X50 - Best Value
The Leupold BX-4 series is designed to be your back country hunting binoculars. Several features on the Pro Guide compliment this style of hunting, and if you're gearing up for this season, make this one your go-to pair.
- Open bridge
- ED glass
- HD quality
- Phase coating
- Twilight Max
- Eyecup issues
There has been more than one complaint about how hard the eyecups are, and it's been rumored they may move out of place once they've been set. But, no one has said either issue would be cause to return or pass up on buying the Pro Guide HD binos.
However, here's a feature fact for you: the aluminum eyecups are field-replaceable for when decades after wear and tear you may need to replace them.
The aluminum frame does an excellent job at providing build integrity and keeping weight down to 28 ounces. The open bridge design lends to its light weight and ergonomics for easy grip, comfort, and long glassing sessions.
As a high-end series of binos, it has the works. Leupold uses BaK4 roof prism glass, calcium-fluoride elements for high-def quality at all magnification levels, and a Guardion lens coating to shed all the nasties that may want to stick to your lenses.
Phase coated prisms help to produce edge-to-edge clarity and sharp resolution that works cohesively with the specialized glass elements in the objectives that reduce chromatic aberration.
The Twilight Max Light Management System feature is a genius design move that enhances the benefits of having 50 mm objectives for low-light clarity that you'll need at dusk and dawn.
The diopter is found on the center focus wheel and must be pulled out to set and pushed back in to lock into place. Quality accessories like the Go-Afield case and deluxe shoulder strap are included. And, perhaps the best feature of all is the GORE Optifade Open Country skin.
With this finish option available, ditch the Shadow Gray finish and hunt in camo style.
2. Maven B1.2 10x42
The Maven B1.2 is not a mid-range binocular that barely makes the high-end category. It is a true premium grade hunting binocular!
- Wide-angle SP prisms
- ED glass
- Dielectric coatings
- Magnesium chassis
- Small tripod cap
Having field tested the B1.2 10x42 binoculars, I can say for a fact that they are worth the cost and high-end in every way. New improvements were made to the best-selling B.1 line that has made the B1.2 a true upgrade.
With wide-angle Schmidt-Pechan prisms with dielectric coatings, the Maven bino has a wide FOV and extremely bright seeing. Even when the sun was going down fast, I could still track a gang of elk well beyond 1000 yards.
It has a fully rubber armored body that covers a magnesium frame. It’s nitrogen-purged and completely waterproof. This is a pair that can withstand the conditions of a Winter hunt, and you will want to take these on a hunt with the edge-to-edge clarity and impressively sharp images you’ll have.
This pair has proven itself well-suited to birdwatching, tactical use, and recreational purposes like hiking. Its compact size, weatherproof body, and optical performance is that of a high-end binocular worth more than $1000.
3. Vortex Kaibab 18x56 – Best for Long Range
While not a Vortex Razor UHD, the Kaibab HD is certainly considered next-level-best in optical quality but at half the cost. Quite a few things are different in this 18x56 model compared to the Razor, so here’s where the lower cost comes from and why it’s still a high-end binocular at the same time.
- Schmidt-Pechan prisms
- Excellent optics
- Locking diopter
- Argon gas
- Made in China
Finding the Kaibab HD with 18x magnification of this quality under $1000 is a tough act to follow for competing manufacturers. Perhaps the one cost saver is that it’s made in China. The Maven B5 and Vortex Razor UHD are made in Japan, but they are at least 50% more in cost for comparable configurations.
At this price point, it’s fantastic to see APO optics that are exceptionally expensive to produce and HD Lens Elements (i.e., ED glass) to make the Schmidt-Pechan (SP) prisms. Although cheaper and less complex than the Abbe-Koenig (AK) prisms in the previously mentioned B5 and Razors, they are decked out with XR Plus FMC, Dielectric/Phase Correction, and Plasma Tech coatings, some of which are must-haves for maximum optical performance in a Dach-based (roof) prism.
As you can see, it’s clear where the cost savings come from, but it’s by no means a “cheap” binocular. With 18x magnification, it’s excellent for seeing small caliber groupings beyond 100 yards at the range if you’d rather not trudge out a spotting scope. It’s made for big country and mountain (alpine) hunting where long-distance shots are likely. Don’t forget the tripod.
If the budget is maxed out at $1000 but you want big 56mm lenses and high power for extreme hunting conditions or range and competition work out to 1000 yards, the Vortex Kaibabs come highly recommended.
4. Swarovski CL Companion Pocket 10X25
I've thrown in the CL Companion Pocket 10X25 binocular because it's a Swarovski that comes in at less than $1000!
Optically, it's every part an equal to its siblings with SwaroBright, Schmidt-Pechan prisms, locking mechanisms, and submersible to 13 feet!
This 10X25 CL is the best-of-the-best when it comes to compact optics, not only is it small enough to fit into your pocket but also to keep you glassing in comfort for hours on end.
If Swarovski glass is on your shopping list, you better check out our review of this sweet little pocket rocket!
5. Sig Sauer Kilo3000BDX 10X42
This binocular is new and more advanced than any other binocular Sig has pumped out in the past. And yes, you can sometimes snag it for under a thousand bucks!
- LRF feature
- BDX compatible
- 5000 yard range
- Angle compensation
- Reticle size
The Kilo3000BDX is a rangefinder binocular. The technology is difficult for even the best brands to perfect, but the Kilo has done it well - 5,000 yards well. That's right. It has a max reflectivity target range of 5,000 yards, 4,000 yards to trees, and 2,000 yards to deer.
It also provides angle compensated distances for those steep inclines and declines over those long distances. Talk about extreme!
But, to really get the most accurate readings to these distances, it would require mounting it to a tripod - good thing you can. However, few users have said it would be a design improvement to make the reticle circle smaller for better target acquisition.
For a binocular rangefinder, it's not too bad in the weight department with 31 oz under its belt - still heavy, but you have two technologies in one unit on your hip or around your neck. With 18 mm of eye relief, glasses-wearers shouldn't have any complaints.
Being a BDX compatible unit means you can sync up your bino rangefinder with your BDX riflescope for an automatic illuminated holdover point seen through your scope. With the BDX app, even more is possible.
For a binocular with these capabilities, it really is impressive that it comes in around $1000. This Sig deal is hard to beat.
6. Zeiss Conquest HD 10x42 Binoculars - Best Overall
There's no way a Zeiss doesn't make it into the top picks of this budget category.
As one of the most bought-out Zeiss binoculars in the market, it has every right to be featured as a premium and high quality binocular. It literally has everything you could want in a binocular priced under $1000: stunning glass, superb coatings, and a prism system that's fit for any lighting challenges you dare hunt in.
It's refreshing to see Zeiss come down a notch in price to cater to most hunters who can't stretch the dollar into the triple zero digit range. As a high quality binocular that technically shouldn't be in this price category, it's a steal!
7. Vortex Razor HD 12X50
The Vortex Razor HD 12X50 technically disqualifies from this price bracket because it has a price tag of around $1100, but since I can tell you that it won't make the high-end list of binoculars,
I'm giving it a mention here - besides, you can get if for barely over $1000 on sale so I think that is close enough to fit this price range.
It's loaded with an APO system, Plasma Tech, XR Plus Fully Multi-Coated lenses, and a whole mouthful more, including a True Open Hinge design and lightweight magnesium chassis.
Now, if you don't know what all of that means and how it is going to benefit your hunt, you will have to check out the detailed review of the Razor HD.
What to Look for in a Binocular in this Price Range
This price range is the ideal category for buying a binocular - if you know what you're looking for.
High-powered might seem to be the way to go, but in this quality range, you'll have much further distance with premium glass versus a cheaper, high-powered bino with mediocre or poor glass.
|Binocular||Power||Eye Relief||Exit Pupil|
|Leupold BX-4||10x50||18.8 mm||5 mm|
|Maven B1.2||10x42||17.8 mm||4.2 mm|
|Vortex Kaibab||18x56||16.4 mm||3.1 mm|
|Swarovski CL Companion Pocket||10x25||17 mm||2.5 mm|
|Sig Sauer KILO3000 BDX||10x42||18 mm||4.2 mm|
|Zeiss Conquest HD||10x42||17 mm||4.2 mm|
|Vortex Razor HD||12x50||15.5 mm||4.2 mm|
Tip number one: always look for quality glass!
Some binoculars are too overpriced with little quality, and the quality of other binos in this range almost seem too good to be true. So, what do you look for? Let us give you a jump start in narrowing down on the vitals.
|Binocular||Power||Rangefinder||Field of View|
|Leupold BX-4||10x50||No||283 feet @ 1000 yards|
|Maven B1.2||10x42||No||362 feet @ 1000 yards|
|Vortex Kaibab||18x56||No||194 feet @ 1000 yards|
|Swarovski CL Companion Pocket||10x25||No||294 feet @ 1000 yards|
|Sig Sauer KILO3000 BDX||10x42||Yes||Undisclosed|
|Zeiss Conquest HD||10x42||No||345 feet @ 1000 yards|
|Vortex Razor HD||12x50||No||285 feet @ 1000 yards|
- Quality glass: This should include premium glass elements. Ex. ED, HD, etc. Look for world-renown glass sources.
- Quality coatings: This should include layered, weatherproof, debris-proof, and scratch-proof coatings. Additionally, look for any corrective or mirror coatings for roof-type prism binos.
- High-end focus system: Top dollar focus systems should include IF or dual focus systems.
- Tripod adaptable: Expensive can mean high-powered. Mount for those times the 10X mag proves to be too much.
- Quality Warranties: Protect your investment with the best available warranty.
Premium Prices Without Selling a Kidney!
We all know those types of optics that are worth selling off an organ or two for, but you can keep your kidneys intact with these high quality binoculars. You're looking at high-class, premium, and luxury features for the best value in the market, and we're not just saying that either.
Without spending a penny over a grand, you'll be surprised to find that most hunters are willing to drop down several hundred bucks for a dependable optic. Yes - several hundred bucks. Sometimes you gotta give some to get some!
You might be pleasantly surprised that you get more quality than what you anticipated for the price.
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Tina is a naturalized citizen of the United States. Clearly, she immediately became attached to executing her newly earned freedoms and rights. Today, she’s crazy about hunting, shooting, and learning all that she can about the tools that make her hobbies possible. Tina hopes to impart her knowledge, especially that about optics, with anyone that wants to hear it.