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TopTenREVIEWS - Silver Award - Awarded for excellence in design, usability and feature set

The optics and viewing on the Pentax are almost the best we reviewed. The light width is enough to make these ideal for low-light conditions, the linear field of view is wide enough to give you plenty of space in expansive viewing areas, and you can easily adjust them to fit your eyes. This is the most balanced pair of binoculars that we have researched when looking at the features, price and portability, and they earn our Top Ten Reviews Silver Award.

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Optics & Viewing
Compare
9.4/10
Celestron SkyMaster
Pentax
Bushnell Excursion HD
Bushnell Elite
Leupold Acadia
Leupold Rogue
Nikon Monarch ATB
Spirit XF
Bushnell Bear Grylls
Steiner Safari
10
9.4
8.8
7.5
6.3
6.3
5.6
5
6.9
6.3

The biggest benefit of the Pentax DCF is the large field of view. At a thousand meters, the linear field of view is 131 meters. When you are researching how to buy binoculars, the more the better when it comes to what you can see, and these are some of the best birding binoculars. You can compare the extra space to watching a widescreen movie versus a standard-sized one that has chopped the sides off.

A unique feature the Pentax DCF CS 8x42 binoculars offer is the lengthy eyepieces. You can be 21 millimeters away from the eyepieces and still get the full field of view. A few millimeters matters to anyone with glasses. The Pentax also has an anti-reflective coating on the lenses that's silver. The coating improves the efficiency of the binoculars and prevents extra loss of light. This attribute is a nice addition that is in some of the best binoculars.

Build & Design
Compare
10/10
Celestron SkyMaster
Pentax
Bushnell Excursion HD
Bushnell Elite
Leupold Acadia
Leupold Rogue
Nikon Monarch ATB
Spirit XF
Bushnell Bear Grylls
Steiner Safari
8.1
10
8.1
8.1
10
7.5
10
10
8.1
7.5

The housing of the Pentax binoculars is made with fiber-reinforced polycarbonate. Polycarbonate is a thermoplastic commonly used for binoculars because it's lightweight but strong. Even though it is more resistant to temperature fluctuation than regular plastic, it still expands and contracts more than aluminum and magnesium, which are the other main materials used for binoculars. The fiber reinforcement adds strength to the frame of the binoculars’ body. If the lenses or prisms move, it could potentially throw the picture out of focus. No one wants to look through blurry binoculars.

Portability
Compare
8.1/10
Celestron SkyMaster
Pentax
Bushnell Excursion HD
Bushnell Elite
Leupold Acadia
Leupold Rogue
Nikon Monarch ATB
Spirit XF
Bushnell Bear Grylls
Steiner Safari
9.4
8.1
8.1
7.5
7.5
9.4
8.8
8.8
7.5
5

Like most binoculars, this Pentax set comes with a carrying strap so you don't have to carry it by hand. Even with that advantage, being lightweight is still important. The Pentax DCF CS 8x42 binoculars aren't the lightest binoculars we reviewed as they come in at 22.5 ounces. A few extra ounces hanging from your neck won't go unnoticed after a few hours of hiking.

Help & Support
Compare
7.5/10
Celestron SkyMaster
Pentax
Bushnell Excursion HD
Bushnell Elite
Leupold Acadia
Leupold Rogue
Nikon Monarch ATB
Spirit XF
Bushnell Bear Grylls
Steiner Safari
10
7.5
10
10
10
10
6.9
10
6.9
10

Pentax provides plenty of online information as well as email and phone support. The email support team responded to our question the next business day. However, it falters with its short warranty. Most all of the other binoculars that we reviewed have at least a 10-year warranty except the Pentax, which has a disappointing one-year warranty. The best birding binoculars come with a lifetime warranty.

 
 

Pentax Summary:
9.2/10

The Pentax DCF CS 8x42 binoculars have many high-end features such as wide field of view. It comes with the essentials such as a case and covers for the eyepieces and front lenses. Although price wasn't a determining factor, this pair is affordable. All binoculars in this review are fewer than $500, which we wanted to maintain due to the newer and pricier HD binoculars. The field of view and sturdy frame make them competitive binoculars.

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Pentax DCF CS 8x42

Pros
The optical features such as the field of view and anti-reflective coating are exceptional.

Cons
It doesn't have a lifetime warranty.

The Verdict
: 9.15/10

The wide field of view makes these one of the best sets of birding binoculars.