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10×42 VS 12×50 Binoculars | Optics Trade Debates

Hello and welcome to another Optics Trade debate. Today, we are going to be comparing two configurations of binoculars, namely 10×42 and 12×50.

Check out 10×42 VS 12×50 binoculars video

Before we move on to the differences, let us begin with some general features of the 10×42.

What are 10×42 Binoculars good for?

10×42 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 12×50 Binoculars good for?

12×50 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 10×42 versus 12×50 binoculars, we would like to point out the only noticeable similarity we found: these two configurations provide similar low-light performance. 8×42 binos provide a 4.2 mm exit pupil, and the 12×50 almost do as well.

What is the Difference Between 10×42 and 12×50 Binoculars?

The first difference between 10×42 and 12×50 binoculars is the magnification:

  • 10×42 binoculars feature 10x magnification and
  • 12×50 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 10×42 binoculars have a smaller objective lens. This means that these binoculars weigh less, are usually smaller, and the comfort is better. With 12×50 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 10×42 or 12×50?

The 10×42 is an extremely popular configuration – second in line to 8×42. It is more universal, thus suitable for beginners, as well as more experienced users, whereas the 12×50 is a configuration not as suitable for beginners.

Products mentioned in the 10×42 VS 12×50 Binoculars debate:


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