Hawke Frontier ED X • 8x32 • $429
Tight and balanced, this is a priced-right, versatile binocular that has the good looks to accompany a traveler. But it also has enough durability to handle most of a hunter’s field duty.
Athlon Midas • 10x25 • $170
The Midas was the double-hinge runt of the binocular test. It would be right at home in a turkey vest, a treestand, or a shirt pocket. The glass is pretty good, but the controls, as you might expect, are tiny.
Vanguard Vesta • 8x42 • $130
Positioned as an entry-level binocular, the Vesta feels plasticky and is crudely finished. But the relatively low price, decent glass, and the lifetime warranty earned it high value scores.
Steiner Predator AF • 8x30 • $350
The auto-focus capability and porro-prism design are both a little dated, but the Steiner’s lightweight polymer chassis and good glass and coatings give it enough field cred to live up to its name.