Best Monocular for 2019- Top Monocular(buying guide and Review)

BY James Brown​, 7 Minutes

Just like a binocular or a spotting scope, monocular makes your viewing experience a lot easier by picking out an object from the distance hasslefree.

Getting the best monocular is not an easy task considering that there are a plethora of options out there. And you might come across a point where you you have seen so many monoculars and you are just as blank as you first started looking.

It's a tough task to pick one product if you are listening to everybody's advice. Don't do the mistake which i did years ago. Just listen to one person and go with it.
Also do your own research, compare each of the monocular so you will get a clear idea, which best suits you. 

So with that said, I have done ten's of hours of research on each monocular that are available in the market right now to know which one is the undisputed champion out of all the options. This list of 5 best monocular will not only help you with choosing the right one but it will also make you a mini specialist in Monoculars.

Make sure to read this article till the end, there is a buying guide in the end which helps you with all the important aspect of the of monocular you need in making a buying decision, which will save you a lot of time and money.


best moocular Zeiss Carl Optical Victory PRF

Zeiss Carl Optical Victory PRF Monocular

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best monoular

Leica monovid Monocular

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best Monocular

Bushnell legend ultra hd monocular

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The Firefield Nightfall 2 is a compact mid range monocular that comes at around $100.

The best thing about this monocular is its ability to produce better images even in low light at such price point. 

Best monocular Firefield 5×50 Nightfall 2

Bigger is not always better, this is what we have learned after using Nightfall 2. Comparatively, nightfall 2 looks and feels a bit tiny which helps it in making a compact profile.

The quality of optics with this one works just fine, one can call it flawless. Which is to me feels a bit underpriced as it delivers some noteworthy performance.

One of its highlighted features, its body, is compact in size than any other night vision monocular on the market today as mentioned above.

Its ergonomic design and comfortable grip make the device suitable for prolonged use. The device is not too heavy nor too light. The 50mm lens size enhances the viewing experience promoting greater light transmission.

Nightfall 2 is one of the best monocular we have used for around $100 so far. The easy to hold grip design is convenient. In addition, the power saving PULSE IR illuminator only adds in with a plethora of other features.

One great feature of this device is its objective lens, which is one of the largest on the market. The fire field Nightfall 2 comes with a weather resistance design housing a rubber- armor design for superior durability.

Another great feature of this monocular is its weight of just 15.2 oz without batteries or a couple of more ounce with them.

The padded carrying case feels comfortable and natural to hold, which also prevents your monocular from wear and tear.

In short, Nightfall 2 is great for lots of activities such as night hunting, surveillance or just general sightseeing.

The Good Stuff:

  • The ergonomic design makes it much more compact than similar monoculars
  • It comes with high power infrared illumination built-in with power saving feature
  • A battery life of about twenty hour
  • Easy to grip design
  • Fully weather resistant
  • Objective lens is relatively large
  • Durable rubber-armored housing
  • The device is easy to operate and lightweight
  • The uses AA batteries makes it economical than the use of more exotic and expensive battery types

The Bad Stuff:

  • Infrared Light is visible to observers from the right angle
  • Doesn't come with the batteries

Over the years Vortex has come up with such great optics, And, Vortex Solo R/T Ranging Monocular is no exception. Especially for hunters.

The best feature of this monocular is the field of view, which is one of the best we have ever seen in a monocular.

Vortex Solo R/T Ranging Monocular

Vortex solo is a powerful mid-level tactical monocular that is not only compact in design but it also is extremely light which makes it very convenient for various occasions.

This device is 5.3 inches in length and 2.3 inches wide and weighing only 10.2 ounce makes it easy to handle. Due to its accurate estimation for your calling shot, makes this device best for hunting and wild trips.

This monocular comes with an objective lens of 36mm featuring a close focus of approximately 16.4 feet with 8X magnification to reach a broad as well as a close view. While this feature is useful for a broad view, it makes it a bit difficult to focus on nearby objects as it is designed to be compact, it cannot resonate with everyone.

The field of view with this monocular is one of the widest we have seen with 393 feet at 1000 feet. The eye relief feels natural with 18mm with or without glasses. One great thing about the eyecups with this monocular is that it is easy to rotate and fold up & down.

In addition, the lens is covered with layers of chemical to reduce chromatic aberration, which makes it is great for producing good quality images. The roof prism design with Bak-4 prism on this monocular is compact providing extra durability.

Another good feature of this monocular is its ability to work in low light conditions, which is the best in class we have seen. Vortex goes all out with one as it features both a target image focus wheel and a reticle focus wheel. It helps in eliminating parallax problem and allows you to get the reticle function flawlessly.

If we talk about the built of this monocular, it comes with a rubber armor body, which provides a non-slip grip, and a shockproof body. This device is backed up with a VIP lifetime warranty so do not doubt its ability.

The monocular is sealed with O-ring and purged with nitrogen gas to make the device waterproof and fog proof. By the way, the image quality with fantastic in different weather conditions.  

The Good Stuff:

  • Comfortable range while finding reticles.
  • High quality optics
  • Lifetime service
  • Durability is off the charts
  • Fairly good weight

The Bad Stuff:

  • Doesn't Include lens cap
  • Case is poorly manufactured 

The Bushnell legend ultra HD works flawlessly for both tactical and hunting purpose while maintaining affordability.

The great thing about this monocular is its ability to produce high resolution and crisp images even during dusk.

best Monocular

The legend ultra HD monocular is a handy easy to carry monocular which comes with a 10X magnification with a 42 mm objective lens having an ergonomics and tactical use in mind.

What’s in the box? Bushnell legend ultra HD, Monocular strap and a carrying case. The tripod is built right in the monocular but the tripod socket is removable. The only flaw with this monocular is its carrying case. It is quite large and does not fit the device inside it completely.

The Legend Ultra HD is designed with Bak-4 roof prism providing outstanding image quality even from a mile away. The multi-coating on the lens prevents the glaring and fogging of the lens.

The monocular is completely waterproof, thanks to RainGuard HD coating which provides permanent water repellent capabilities preventing it from fog and glare.

Bushnell Ultra HD monocular offers an ED prime glass to reduce color dispersion featuring terrific color detail even at the longest range of the monocular. Another good feature with this monocular is its eye relief, setting at 15.2mm and the twist up design can be used with or without eyeglasses.

It comes with a 42mm objective lens, which provides enough light transmission for an impressive low light image. I have used this monocular early in the morning and later in the evening, and every time it exceeded my expectations.

The field of view of this monocular, an impressive 340 feet at 1000 feet with 10X magnification. A quick note about the focus wheel, it is designed in a way, which feels natural, allowing easy one-handed operation.

Now that we are done with all the nitty-gritty things, let’s talk about the body and durability of Ultra HD. First off, it comes in two colors, matte black, and tactical sand. Since the body is rubber armored, it provides the device from excessive shock resistance which can damage the glass of the monocular. I have dropped it about 9-10 times and it still works like a charm.

There is a stainless steel belt clip to the sides of the monocular to attach it to your belt.

Legend Ultra HD is nitrogen purged, so fogging is not an issue and Bushnell is so confident about their product that they have a 100% money back guarantee just in case you don’t like the monocular.  

There are just some minor problems with this device otherwise, this device is excellent.

The Good Stuff:

  • The monocular is Lightweight and it comes with a carrying case and strap.
  • Featuring Rainguard HD casing which makes the binoculars waterproof and fogproof.
  • Comes in two design, black and camo casing.
  • Eye relief settings is remarkable.
  • Ultra Wide field of view.
  • Manufacturer’s warranty.

The Bad Stuff:

  • The eye relief is not satisfactory.
  • Not designed for astronomy viewing.

The Leica monovid  is a high end monocular manufactured for hunting, long range precision shooting and tactical purpose.

This monocular offers one of the best image quality out there for monocular under $500 and certainly one of the best we've come across.

best monoular

Lecia monovid monocular is a small but a powerful monocular. Leica is known for its quality optics, so the challenge is for Monovid to live up to its reputation.

One great feature this monocular has is its size, the monocular is tiny and it can easily fit in the pocket of your shirt. Size matters, always!

So as the monocular is a bit expensive and as tiny as it may seem, the monocular measures just about 1-13/32 inches by 3-27/32 inches in diameter and length. With the close-up lens, the length of the monocular is 4-1/8 inches.

The Leica monovid is not too heavy or too light with or without the close-up lens. It varies from a quarter of a pound to about a bit more than the pound.

This monocular features a 20mm objective lens providing an 8X magnification producing images that are nothing but crystal clear. The contrast was right in the sweet spot, giving out remarkable images be it during a bright day or during low light.

Another great feature of this device is its field of view of 330 feet at 1000 yards. In addition, the close focusing distance of this device is great as well with just 6’11. However, if you configure the screw on the close-up lens, you will attain a macro effect and you will be able to focus on as close as 12 inches.

Leica Monovid utilizes a roof prism design with a Bak-4 prism glass using phase correction coating. This phase correction coating combines with Leica High lux system, to provide flawless resolution, contrast, and light transmission through the prism.

Since the lens is fully multi-coated with a water-repellent Aqua-Dura coating on the outer side of the lens to repel dirt and water. The only beef I have with this device is its hefty price tag but the quality of the optics will melt your heart.

At first, I was expecting the focus ring to not work with gloves, but I was wrong as the focus ring is designed with perfection providing the solid grip. This monocular will make your viewing experience nothing but effortless.

If you are worried about longevity, your worrying is legit if you are spending that much on a monocular but the device is 10/10 for durability as the body is made out of aluminum with a rubber shell that makes it rugged to work in harsh weather conditions. On top of that, the Leica 8X20 is shockproof, waterproof (up to 3 meters) and fog proof.

Due to its ruggedness, it is most suitable for hunting, hiking, and camping.

Leica Monovid is a top quality monocular with crisp and bright images and one of the best monocular I have ever used. Definitely get one if you have a budget. Nevertheless, wait for our top pick, it’s even better.

The Good Stuff:

  • Remarkable resolution of image
  • Close up lens turns the monocular into a macro-monocular reducing the close range
  • Accessories comes with the monocular
  • Can be used in a variety of occasions

The Bad Stuff:

  • Quite expensive 
  • Too bulky when in the case

Our Top Pick

The Victory PRF is monocular and a pocket rangefinder in a single design and is packed with features. Zeiss Carl is already popular amongst hunters for the quality of optics they manufacture.

With one of the best-contrasted, crisp and sharp images, I have seen in a monocular, Victory PRF deserve to be on top without any hesitation. The biggest advantage of this monocular over other monocular is its ranging capabilities.

This monocular is designed in a way, which feels comfortable to hold, the optics are clear, and reading accuracy is spot on. The compact size of this device is one of its best features measuring in at 1.88 inches (H) x 3.85 inches (W) which makes it very handy.

The monocular has a powerful 8X magnification, with clear 1200 yards of distance measurement. Not to mention the image quality is the best we have seen.

The 330 field of view complements the 26mm lens, which makes for a wide eyepiece.

The robust design and construction of this monocular accommodate a rubber armor over its body to give you a firm grip. In addition, single or both hands can hold the comfortable design, which makes it easier to hold it steady.

Victory PRF shows high performance during the day as well as during night. Moreover, it shows exceptional performance during bad weather conditions making it a good option for all the hunters out there.

One unexpected feature this device has is its ability to get precise and accurate reading of small game in unpleasant/bad weather conditions. Try getting the reading during a storm?

The readout takes about 1.5 seconds to measure accurate readings, which could be faster but it still works fine for me.

The thing Zeiss victory PRF lacks is its ability to calculate slope, which is still forgivable considering the other features it includes like the binocular design, LED display, extremely accurate readings. So, if it's in your budget, that’s the one you should go for.

The Good Stuff:

  • The Self-illuminating LED display works perfectly
  • Ballistic data
  • Can be used with both hands
  • Lotu-Tec Coating
  • Compact in size

The Bad Stuff:

  • Cannot read slopes (No angle compensation) 

#1 Top Pick

best moocular Zeiss Carl Optical Victory PRF

Zeiss Carl Optical Victory PRF Monocular

Why wait? Get this Monocular now!

Monocular buying guide

What to look for when buying the best Monocular

This buying guide will not only help you choose the best monocular for your budget but it will also make you a mini-expert of monocular, so you can speak with authority if you consider buying it from a shop.

If size is your concern, monocular is only half the size of binocular. Moreover, its significantly lighter, compact and more portable.

If you are unsure whether to buy a monocular, spotting scope or a binocular, this guide will smash all your doubts to help you make an informed decision.

What is a good monocular power?

Make sure the first thing you check in the monocular is its power of magnification. Typically, a monocular will have a magnification of 6X to 10X. Higher magnification will allow you to see further with rich details. One great thing about monocular over binocular is that it offers similar power as a binocular with half the size.

Right lens size?

If you carefully look at a typical specification of a monocular, you will see some numbers like 10X25 or 8X24. These numbers are nothing but magnification (10X) and lens size (25).

The bigger the lens size, the wider you will see. A monocular will typically have a lens size of 20mm to 42mm. In addition, a bigger lens enhance the quality of the image, making them look brighter. However, a bigger lens will also result in a bulkier and heavier monocular.

Size and weight of the monocular

Generally, a monocular comes in a carrying case. And these types of monocular are compact in size that can fit into your pocket and be very portable. A pocket monocular is easy to carry around everywhere especially during hiking and hunting.

Due to their size, the monocular with an 8X25 or a 10X25 specification has a limited view. Also, they can be a bit challenging to use. For better, brighter and crisper images go for a monocular with an objective lens of 30mm to 42mm.

Monocular Vs Binocular

With binoculars, you are able to view images in 3D as you can use both eyes while in a monocular; the images are more of a 2D view. Depth perception is the most significant functional difference between a monocular and a binocular.

Monocular Vs Spotting Scope

A large monocular with higher magnification, wider field of view and the large objective lens are called spotting scopes. Monocular is smaller in size, a small objective lens, and less power.

A monocular will be less heavy and compact in size so they are much easier to carry. Spotting scopes are typically used for hunting, bird watching, sightseeing or spotting target from a fixed location.

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