What Does 10×50 Mean in Binoculars

What Does 10x50 Mean In Binoculars

In this era of fast advancing technology, I sometimes wonder about certain features of some tech devices just as many others also do out there. As we may know, many persons usually find it hard to understand what the two labeled numbers on binoculars mean. So they may go by asking; what does 10×50 mean in binoculars? Funny enough, there is just a simple explanation for that. Try to memorize this formula and it will make your new optics shopping experience much better.


For you to understand better, binocular is a kind of 2 closely mounted telescopes with the 2 telescopes aligned in the same direction. These two telescopes allow a viewer to easily see objects present in a far location. Also, binoculars provide a 3-dimensional (3D) image to the viewer of a particular object. 


Often you will see binoculars that are described as 10×50, 20×60, or others but, what do the numbers on binoculars mean? The binocular numbers are fully explained below.


The first number on binoculars simply means the magnification property of that device. For 10×50 binoculars, observing an object with them will make it appear 10 times closer to the eyes more than when viewing such with the naked eye. That of a 20×60 doubles the magnification of that of the aforementioned.


Note that magnification will always keep the object close to your eyes whenever you observe the binoculars. The lenses of the device work a lot on determining these views, the farthest lens from the eyes of a viewer is the binocular’s largest lens. 

A binocular described as 10-30×50 has a variable zooming ability, and it can also produce a 10 to 30 times magnification. Such a device has a small lever positioned close to the right thumb to help control magnification. As much as you may need to keep in mind, binocular numbers influence the functioning of all binoculars.


However, the second number means the size of the binocular’s objective lens when measured in millimetres. The large lenses located at the far end of every binoculars are the objective lenses. Large objectives do gather more amount of light, therefore doubling the diameter of the lens will resultantly increase the light gathered by four times. This feature is really important when in poor light conditions like when watching a bird at dusk or engaging in astronomy. Even though objective lenses of 100 mm perform excellently, yet their large sizes end up making them being bulky and uneasy to carry. 

Here is the video on what do the numbers on binoculars

How to Choose Binoculars

Out of a large number of available optic devices out there, you need to understand how to choose binoculars that would fit your expectations, and that balls down to make certain considerations. 

You should know that images appear much closer relative to the increase in magnification; just as the magnification increases. The price of binoculars is proportional to its magnifying power. Remember that objective lenses of larger size gather more amount of light to produce great images, hence they are very helpful when under low light conditions and at that time, animals are usually more active as well. Due to the increase in weight and size caused by larger objectives, some optics are sold at higher prices.

Some Other Things You Need to know as Regards Binoculars

There is what is known as an exit pupil in binoculars. The exit pupil is the portion where light passes through to the eyepiece. This serves as the hole from which an object is viewed. The bigger the size of an exit pupil, so also the brighter the kind of image produced.


Another term is eye relief which is the level of distance in mm at which an observer will position his/her eyes from the eyepiece and still be able to capture the total field of view of a binocular. The focal length of a binocular determines an eye relief. Note that the position of lenses found in the eyepiece affects the ability & quality to focus.


Making lenses with specialized glasses are the best choices all because it’s able to always gather light much better. Some binoculars are made of eco-glass. Just as the name implies, eco-glass referred to a type of glass that’s ecologically friendly. This type does not make use of lead compared to some other types of glasses. Also, this kind of glass won’t create any effect on the type of image produced. At the same time, you won’t need to worry about the issue of chemical pollution upon the breakage of this glass. It can be disposed of easily since it’s ecologically friendly. 

Describing Binoculars Further

Normally, the design of binoculars is targeted at providing an upright view in a correctly oriented manner i.e. from left to right. This is because they will allow the natural use of both eyes, and they are even more convenient to use than using single telescopes. They also provide depth perception and improvement of visual acuity through the combined sets of data that are provided to the human visual system for necessary processing.

A typical image of a binoculars

what does 10x50 mean in binoculars

One of the best binoculars for hunting is; Vortex Optics Diamondback 10×42 Binoculars, which is one of the waterproof proof binoculars with fog proof ability that you can commonly find.

One fact as regards the functioning of binoculars is that they provide 3D images to viewers compared to what monoculars or telescopes would do. Particularly the 2 views presented to each eye of the viewer from closer objects do come from little different viewpoints which then produce a merged view to both eyes.

Pictorial explanation of how binoculars work.

Pictorial explanation of how binoculars work

To hit the nail on the head, now, how do binoculars work in making a zoom of an object from afar? For simple understanding I will say that; whenever rays of light gathered from a faraway object trip through a convex shaped lens, they resultantly cross over the lens. This, therefore, provide an explanation as to why far away objects appear upside down when viewed via a magnifying glass. The second glass does not correct this issue still. This is the more reason binoculars have prisms built. Inside them in pairs to help rotate the object’s image through an angle of 900; flipping it onto its side. While the second prism now rotates the image through another angle of 900; which then flips the image again onto its side, and all these end up rotating the object in the correct direction effectively. The arrangement of the prisms may be in a back-to-back order i.e. forming “Roof prisms” or arranged at 900 i.e. forming “Porro prisms”. 

Perfect Magnification Power for Different Kinds of Situations

As many would be looking for which binocular magnification is better of, I would rather say there is no particular perfect magnification for all types of situations. Even though several types of binoculars are dedicated to being used for different kinds of outdoor activities, yet magnification powers happen to vary relatively. Sometimes you may wish to zoom in your objects under observation as much as possible just like when bird watching or hunting but, zooming in those objects’ view isn’t as crucial as how clear the image looks.

Under varying situations, many often think of which binocular magnification is better among the hundreds of binoculars on the market. To get binoculars you should look that will fit into the most situation, you should try to look for those with magnification power that fall in the range of 7x to 10x. For hunters, best binoculars for hunting would be preferably those with 10x magnification, especially when it comes to large game hunting. This will simply enable them to even observe how the prey behaves from a far distance. Whereas 7x magnification would be useful for the audience of a particular sports match in one arena. Also, 3x to 5x magnification would be more beneficial to viewers in a cinema house. 

Arithmetically, diving the object size by magnification power, for instance, would be:

10×50 giving; 50/10=5, 

7×50 giving 50/7=7.14,  

20×50 giving 50/20=2.5 and 

8×40; 40/8=5.

These numbers have gotten above, do they stand for the exit pupil? Or does it provide a perfect answer to what does 10×50 mean in binoculars? But, note that whenever you position your binoculars right towards a bright light source excluding the sun, the small circular light hovering before the eyepiece happens to be the exit pupil. The larger the size of the exit pupil of a binocular the brighter the image produced, and vice versa.

Just as you may need to know, how far can you see with 10×50 binoculars? A binoculars lens will focus your vision to permit seeing up to a distance of about 12 miles away. Whereas the normal human eye can only be able to see up to a distance of 3 miles from your position, that’s even on a clear day.

Before taking the bold step to purchase binoculars, people often ask what is the strongest magnification for binoculars. Since the essence of getting binoculars is to magnify objects under view. Even though it may sound unbelievable, yet no doubt, Sunagor’s mega-zoom binoculars are known to be the most powerful binoculars you can find on the market. Also, they possess a magnification ranging from 30x to 160x. It comes with a 170-mm diameter lens. Consequently, they provide a wider field of view having much brightness. Hence, you can zoom in your binocular from incredible distances & see the objects as if you are very close to them. Beneficially, you can easily watch the stars, the moon as well as the planets. So, astronomers will find great pleasure in this. There are many other powerful binoculars on the market, you can just check around to make a choice. 

Wondering how to get the best binoculars under 300 dollars? In case you answered ‘yes’, then you don’t need to worry as there are lots of models on the market that fall in this price range. It’s quite vital to analyze every aspect & features before you go on to make the final decision of which particular model to buy. Below are enlisted few among many of the best binoculars for the money that you can buy upon thoughtful considerations, all available at amazon.

• Steiner Model 575 Marine 7x50 Binoculars

Steiner Model 575 Marine 7x50 Binoculars

Item Dimensions: 7.4 x 3.19 x 8.19 in

Item Weight: 2.3 lbs

Magnification Maximum: 7x

Objective Lens Diameter: 50 millimeters

• Vanguard Endeavor ED 10x42 Binoculars

Vanguard Endeavor ED 10x42 Binoculars

Item Dimensions: 5.7 x 5.1 x 2.4 in

Item Weight: 1.3 lbs

Magnification Maximum: 8x

Objective Lens Diameter: 42 millimeters

• Wingspan Optics Thunderbird 8x32 Binoculars

Wingspan Optics Thunderbird 8x32 Binoculars

Item Dimensions: 5.3 x 2 x 4.9 in

Item Weight: 1.75 lbs

Magnification Maximum: 8x

Objective Lens Diameter: 32 millimeters

• Carson 3D Series TD-842ED 8x42 Binoculars

Carson 3D Series TD-842ED 8x42 Binoculars

Item Dimensions: 5.7 x 5.1 x 2.4 in

Item Weight: 1.3 lbs

Magnification Maximum: 8x

Objective Lens Diameter: 42

• Leupold BX-2 Alpine 10x42 Binoculars

Leupold BX-2 Alpine 10x42 Binoculars

Item Dimensions: 2.53 x 6.44 x 6.96 in

Item Weight: 2.35 lbs

Magnification Maximum: 10x

Objective Lens Diameter: 42 millimeters

Among others, best binoculars for wildlife include NIKON PROSTAFF 3S 10X42, CELESTRON NATURE DX 10X56, and HAWKE FRONTIER HD X 10X42.

To have better ideas of how users feel about many of the 10×50 binoculars out there, you can check sites like Amazon for 10×50 binoculars reviews.

Final Words

I believe this article must have explicitly opened your understanding of what do binocular numbers mean in every sense. And in this context, binoculars 10×50 have been well discussed with some enlisted examples that can guide your purchases. Above all, it’s pleasing that the bogus questioning headline; what does 10×50 mean in binoculars has answered.

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