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10x42 VS 12x50 Binoculars | Optics Trade Debates

Hello and welcome to another Optics Trade debate. Today, we are going to be comparing two configurations of binoculars, namely 10x42 and 12x50.

Check out 10x42 VS 12x50 binoculars video

Before we move on to the differences, let us begin with some general features of the 10x42.

What are 10x42 Binoculars good for?

10x42 is a standard configuration of binoculars, which is extremely popular – all manufacturers produce such binoculars. These can be used for all types of observations, such as birdwatching, hunting, even travelling and hiking, observing wildlife, etc.

What are 12x50 Binoculars good for?

12x50 is a much rarer configuration to come across. It can also be used for hunting, birdwatching, hiking and traveling, but it is not as popular. For this reason, only a few manufacturers produce them. In Europe, they are also not as popular as in the US.

Before we move on to the differences between 10x42 versus 12x50 binoculars, we would like to point out the only noticeable similarity we found: these two configurations provide similar low-light performance. 8x42 binos provide a 4.2 mm exit pupil, and the 12x50 almost do as well.

What is the Difference Between 10x42 and 12x50 Binoculars?

The first difference between 10x42 and 12x50 binoculars is the magnification:

  • 10x42 binoculars feature 10x magnification and
  • 12x50 binoculars feature 12x magnification.

The 10x magnification provides the user with a wider field of view compared to the 12x magnification. This also means that you get a more detailed image with the 12x and less handshaking when observing for longer periods of time with the 10x.

When it comes to the lens diameter, the 10x42 binoculars have a smaller objective lens. This means that these binoculars weigh less, are usually smaller, and the comfort is better. With 12x50 binoculars, it is more difficult to observe for longer periods of time if you are not leaning against something or mounting them on a tripod, which helps you to stabilize the image.

What is better 10x42 or 12x50?

The 10x42 is an extremely popular configuration – second in line to 8x42. It is more universal, thus suitable for beginners, as well as more experienced users, whereas the 12x50 is a configuration not as suitable for beginners.

Products mentioned in the 10x42 VS 12x50 Binoculars debate:


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