Best cheap monocular

Best cheap monocular

Last Updated: 23.08.19

Cheap Monocular - Buying guide & Comparison

If you are trying to find the best cheap monocular on the market but you don’t have the time to do the extensive research that this subject requires, we are here to offer you a helping hand. After doing the legwork on your behalf by reading a handful of specialized reviews, we have concluded that the Carson BlackWave 10x25mm (WM-025) is the product that you should have your eyes on. This product stands out thanks to its high magnification ratio as well as because of its waterproof design that makes it safe to use while outdoors. Additionally, this model has a wide field of view of 273 feet at 1,000 yards that you might find appealing. If the Carson BlackWave 10x25mm (WM-025) is out of stock, we recommend that you check out the Orion 10x42 Waterproof as it is a reliable second option.

Comparison table

The Good
The Bad

Because we know that browsing the net in search for the best monocular for the money is not an easy task, we have put together a list of features that you should have on your mind while online shopping. So, read ahead and pick the model you believe to be the most reliable.


One of the most important features that a monocular has, the magnification of a device of this type is a make it or break it factor. Before settling for any model that you can find up for sale, previous buyers of optical instruments from this category recommend that one takes to time to consider how he/ she intends to use the device and then make a purchase.

Therefore, it is usually advisable that people purchase low magnification devices for children who want to have fun using a monocular to see the surrounding sights. This type of model usually has a wide field of view, a reason why using it for detail observation might not be appropriate.

Moreover, all those that do not have experience using and managing an item of this type, as well as hobbyists should buy a unit with a midrange magnification ratio. In fact, these devices are suitable for most outdoor activities that imply the use of an optical device to get a better grip of the environment. Also, most of these models are lightweight and waterproof.


If you are determined to settle for the best budget monocular, another aspect that is worth considering is the model’s durability. Because we are well aware that it is quite tricky to determine this aspect from just looking at the models that you can find online, our recommendation to you is that you read plenty of monocular reviews.

Even more so, it is advisable that, before placing an order, one takes the time to read the reviews and feedback comments left by previous buyers of the product that one likes. The main advantage of doing so is the fact that you’ll be able to see what are the pros and the cons of the unit, from other users’ perspectives. What is more, you’ll be equipped to understand just how reliable the device is.

However, make sure that you look for reviews from people that share the same hobbies like you do. For instance, if you are a hunter, search for comments left by fellow huntsmen. By doing so, you can rest assured that the unit is fit for the purpose that you are buying it for.

Lens coating

Last but not least, be sure to purchase a model that has coatings. As you probably already know, coated optics are more durable and can provide the user with a better viewing. From this point of view, you have the option of purchasing a coated item, a multi-coated model, a fully coated product or a fully multi-coated one.

Generally, the coated models are the least expensive as they have just one lens coated, while the fully multi-coated products have all their glass surfaces covered in one or more different coatings. The latter units are also known to supply the user with brighter, sharper images.

Nonetheless, when considering this aspect, your choice should be based on how you intend to use the product, as it is advisable that you don’t invest in fully multi-coated items unless you plan to make use of them on a regular basis for activities such as hunting and/or bird watching.

Top cheap monoculars reviews in 2019

Because we know that the market is currently overloaded with countless similar products, we have composed a list of top-notch products that you might find appealing. These products have all the features that we have addressed previously and have a great price to value ratios. So, go ahead and pick the unit that you think it will best fit your needs.

Carson BlackWave 10x25mm (WM-025)

If you are looking for a product that is cost-effective and that has great reviews from previous buyers, check out the Carson BlackWave 10x25mm (WM-025). This model has a magnification ratio of 10X and a lens diameter of 25mm that makes it appropriate to use during any outdoor activity.

As a plus, the device was equipped with a rugged waterproof design; so that the changing weather won’t stop you savoring contemplating nature. Additionally, the unit comes provided with a close focus feature of no less than 4 feet as well as with a reliable BK-7 prism.

Easy to carry, this model is only 4.4 oz. and is said to supply its users with nitrogen filled glass lenses for better, clearer viewings. What is more, the product’s field of view is quite large, 273 feet at 1,000 yards. Consequently, those using it will be able to get a good grip of the scenery/object that they are observing.



This model is really easy to carry, weighing just 4.4 oz and it’s compact enough to fit in most pockets.

To make the image better, it provides the viewer with a nitrogen-filled glass lens. This makes for a clear and wide field of view of 273 feet at 1000 yards.

The design is waterproof and rugged and the monocular is covered in a rubber membrane that protects it from accidental drops and makes gripping it easier.

It has a reliable prism and it offers the possibility to watch objects in detail as close as 4 feet.



Although the model is waterproof, there doesn’t appear to be any protection around the zoom mechanism. This means that, in time, water can infiltrate through the spaces in the mechanism and thus make the monocular foggy.

Buy from for ($25)

Orion 10x42 Waterproof

Another model that you might find appealing is the Orion 10x42 Waterproof (Black). Described as compact and portable, this hand-held device is said to be ideal for bird watching and for studying the beauty of wildlife.

The product comes fitted with a rubber-armored construction that ensures that the unit is durable. Also, the product is waterproof; thus, you can use it no matter the weather. However, immersing the model in water for scuba diving or other similar activities is not recommended.

The model’s design is quite portable; in fact, this product is 6.1-Inches long and only weighs 11 ounces. So, carrying it around all day won’t pose a problem. Lastly, we have to point out that the device comes supplied with fully multi-coated 42mm diameter optics that have anti-reflection coatings that guarantee that the user is provided with high-quality images. The product also has a 20 inches close focus feature that makes it even more feasible.



One of the first aspects that you’ll observe at this model is how sturdy solid it is. Because it’s covered in a resistant rubber, you don’t have to worry about dropping it.

The rubber offers a good grip too. The eye guard also has rubber over it so it will fit well and soft around your eye.

This model is very good for looking at the details of near objects. It works well starting from distances of 20 inches.

The eye relief is long enough so this monocular can be used by people that wear glasses too.



This model is quite sturdy, but that comes with some drawbacks - some users would prefer a smaller monocular, something that they can carry around easier.

In addition, there have been complaints that the model doesn’t hold water out well enough and it can become foggy.

Buy from for ($59.99)

Alpen Optics 8x25 Waterproof Fogproof

With overwhelmingly positive reviews from both previous buyers and specialists, the Alpen Optics 8x25 Waterproof Fogproof is another model you might want to check out. This compact monocular is capable to magnify the image up to eight times and has an objective lens of no less than 25mm.

What is more, the product was constructed using a BaK-4 prism and optics that have been fully multi-coated. Thus, by taking into account the technical aspects, it is safe to say that the image that it produces is of high-quality. Moreover, the unit is covered in rubber, so that it won’t slip from your hand during use.

In order to make it suitable to use in any type of weather, the manufacturer designed it so that the product is waterproof and fogproof. Besides, the unit features long eye relief and comes shipped with a practical wrist strap and a nylon carrying case where you can store the model in between uses.



Although it’s not a large model, it offers an eye relief that is long enough to suit those wearing glasses. It also makes it more comfortable for everybody to use the monocular.

You will observe that it has indentations on the rubber surface; they are made for fitting the shape of the fingers gripping the model and making the grip better.

The small size makes it convenient to carry, maybe even in a pocket, ready for action.

The technical aspects are also very pleasant - the monocular offers an 8x magnifying power and the prism used ensures a good image clarity.



If you really want to keep it safe and protected, you need to use its case. However, the case is large and it makes this compact model a bit too big. So you either give up on the case or on the portability aspect.

Click to see the price on Amazon!

Brunton Echo Pocket Scope 7x18

If you intend to purchase a quality model but you don’t want to make a big investment, we suggest that you check out the Brunton Echo Pocket Scope. According to its manufacturer, this product is great for camping and other activities.

The model has an objective diameter of 18 m and a magnification ratio of 7 x.  Furthermore, this unit has a near focus of just 13 inches and a consistent field of view of 181 foot at 1000 yards. Differently, from the previous models that we have discussed, this optical device is a little bit smaller in size, reason why it is more transportable.

Last but not least, when shipped, the product includes a polymer frame as well as a lanyard case where you can safely keep the model when you are not using it. As its current users point out, the device is ideal to carry in your car, pocket or go bag.



Very efficient multi-coated optics will help minimize the reflected light and will make this monocular’s images clearer.

The prism that is incorporated in it offers exceptional light transmission.

To protect the optical elements, the monocular is covered in rubber that will save it from drops or scratches.

It’s a very light model, weighing 1.8 ounces and the dimensions are also very small. That makes it highly portable.

Another advantage is that it has a field of view of about 181 feet at 1000 yards.



It’s a good monocular for short distances but it has some issues when trying to look at objects further away. That is because the focus is sensitive and it is quite hard to make the device focus properly.

Additionally, it requires both hands to use it, which is not something that some users appreciate.

Click to see the price on Amazon!

Opticron Trailfinder II 10x25

We couldn’t have ended this top without mentioning the Opticron Trailfinder II 10x25 Green. With a beautiful design, this model stands out thanks to the fact that it is compact. The main reason why the device is so small in size is linked to it being constructed using a BAK-4 roof prism.

As a plus, this model has a nitrogen gas filled waterproof structure and a quite easy to use slide focusing bar that can be utilized whenever one feels the need to adjust the clarity of the image. Besides, all glasses wearers should be aware of the fact that this monocular has a long eye relief eyepiece that makes using the model comfortable. What is more, all the product’s lenses have been fully multi-coated.

Previous buyers of the product point out that this device has a magnificent FOV and that it supplies the user with a clear image that has minimal optical distortion at the edges.



With a simple design, this monocular is built with the purpose of being compact.

The BAK-4 roof prism is the main reason why the manufacturers were able to fit great quality optics in such a small model. It is thus very portable and offers good quality.

The focusing can be done with one hand, using the external focus ring.

Clear images are provided by the nitrogen gas-filled body that is also resistant to water.

Also, the multi-coated lenses help with providing great images.

The eyepiece is covered in rubber and is very comfortable, while the eye relief is relatively long, which means that this model can be used by people who wear glasses.



When you want to focus the monocular, you can do it with one hand, however, it has the bad habit of sticking. What that means is that you need to move it back and forth a bit before you can actually start focusing with it.

Click to see the price on Amazon!
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