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Alyssa A.
Writer
Creating experiences, one adventure at a time

PRODUCT REVIEW

Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binoculars

Harsh outdoor conditions and marine environments prove difficult to navigate if you don’t have the right tools. It is nearly impossible to maximize your explorations without the right pair of binoculars at your disposal. A great pair of high-performing and heavy-duty binoculars can go a long way and make the difference.

If you are looking for marine or waterproof binoculars, you have likely heard of or come across the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular. It is one of Bushnell’s leading sports optics, mainly because of its rugged construction that can thrive in challenging, wet environments.

In this comprehensive review, we will discuss the features and specs of the compact H20 Roof Prism binoculars. Hopefully, this review can help you decide whether they can meet your needs out in the wild. Let’s dive in!

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.7

Reasons to buy

  • Excellent light transmission
  • Rugged, waterproof, and fogproof construction suitable for challenging, wet conditions
  • Shock-absorbing chassis
  • Superior eye relief
  • Carry case with belt loop

Reasons NOT to buy

  • May be too heavy for long periods of use on the move
  • Takes longer to focus in challenging conditions leading to some kidney bean effect

Overview

Famous for being waterproof, the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular has pushed the standards for what a pair of waterproof binoculars should be. However, there is more to this pair than its waterproof characteristics.

These binoculars have superior magnification and objective lens diameter. Some would argue that a 10×42 configuration is the best configuration for different applications, which means that you can use these binoculars anywhere. Whether you are hunting or out in the sea, you can count on this reliable Bushnell pair. The multi-coated optics guarantee optimal light transmission, allowing you to see clearly regardless of external conditions.

Moreover, these binoculars are known for their shock-absorbing chassis and firm grip. These qualities are vital in marine or wet environments because they give you a worry-free experience no matter how difficult the situations get. Additionally, they come with a carrying case and a neck strap, making it easier for you to bring your binoculars wherever you go.

The Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular comes in two types— one with a roof prism and another one with a Porro prism. In this article, we will focus on the binoculars with a roof prism glass, a more complicated construction that results in a more compact form.

Let’s dive in to learn more about what these binoculars have to offer aside from being waterproof!

See the complete list of the best Bushnell Binoculars here!

Bushnell H2O 10X42 Overview

Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binoculars: Key Specifications

  • Product weight: 25 oz.
  • Close Focus: 12’
  • Eye Relief: 17 mm
  • Field of View at 1,000 yds: 102 m
  • Tripod Adaptability
  • Exit pupil: 5 mm
  • BaK-4 roof prism glass
  • Multi-Coated Lenses
  • Twist-up eyecups

Where to Buy:

Image Quality

The Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular is made with BaK-4 glass, which is a more costly and higher quality material than the cheaper BaK-7. BaK-4 optics transmit light with as little light loss as possible. Without a doubt, you will see through these H20 binoculars clearly with little chromatic aberration.

Complementing this pair’s BaK-4 is the multi-coated lens protection. This protective lens coating offers multiple coating layers on one or more lens surfaces, essentially improving image quality with better light transmission and minimizing glare.

What isn’t so good though is the way the image lines up. Even with great optics there can be issues syncing both circles of vision to achieve a good field of view without the black blur at the edge. Even though this irks only when trying to focus quickly after getting them back from someone else, it affects the overall image quality when out hiking around fleeting wild-life.

Construction Quality

As its name suggests, the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular is completely waterproof and intended for use in the wet and wild. No matter how rugged the conditions are, these binoculars are guaranteed to perform.

This is really where these shine. They look tough and they feel tough.

Even if it is raining hard and the surroundings are slippery, you won’t have any issues hanging on to this pair of Bushnell binoculars. It comes with textured, non-slip rubber pads that offer a firm grip, allowing you to stay in control at all times. You need not worry about it slipping off your hands when confronted with a challenging environment.

In case you do accidentally drop it, the chassis has shock absorption properties to counter the impact. Thanks to its impeccable engineering, it does not easily break or get damaged. Indeed, it is a reliable pair that you can expect to last for years.

These binoculars are also fogproof, thanks to their nitrogen filling and O-ring sealing. You can confidently use them even at the highest peaks without moisture getting in the way. No matter how sudden or significant the drops in temperatures are, the optics will remain clear as day.

Bushnell H2O 10X42 Close Up

Ergonomics and Comfort

With an eye relief of 17 mm, the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular is comfortable to use even for those wearing eyeglasses. The eye-cups turn to adjust to your liking for those with spectacles on or for those who prefer a little more space between eye and lens.

It also has a huge center-focus wheel, located right at your fingertips between the eye-cups to make it easy to turn without changing up your grip.

These Bushnell binoculars can be mounted on a tripod. With their tripod adaptability, you may conveniently use them even when you are hunting or shooting. This feature also comes in handy during prolonged hours of use, keeping your binoculars secure and stable while using them.

When you purchase a pair, you get a carrying case, neck strap, and rubber lens covers. The carrying case has a belt loop, allowing you to bring your binoculars with you wherever you go without any hassle. This case also serves as an excellent storage bag, keeping your binoculars safe and in good condition when you are not using them. On the other hand, the neck strap provides additional comfort and convenience. With this strap, there are little to no chances of accidentally dropping your binoculars.

Completing the set are the rubber lens covers, which protect your optics from scratches and other forms of damages. These covers are useful whenever you are not using your binoculars.

Bushnell H2O 10X42 Comfort

The Good

When it comes to binoculars, one of the most critical factors you have to consider is light transmission. Whatever additional features that come with a pair of binoculars and no matter how rugged the chassis is, none of those things matter if you are unable to see clearly through the optics. With the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular, you have nothing to worry about because it boasts a BaK-4 roof prism system and multi-coated lenses. Together, these features deliver improved light transmission, allowing you to see images clearly even when there is low light.

These binoculars were engineered to meet your needs in harsh environments, particularly in wet conditions. The textured, non-slip rubber armor guarantees a firm grip, which means it is almost impossible for you to accidentally drop your binoculars. Further, they come with nitrogen purging and O-ring sealing that makes them fogproof and waterproof.

In the worst case that you drop these binoculars, you need not worry too much. They have shock-absorbing qualities that can counter the impact. The Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular won’t easily break, no matter the challenges that the environment presents. These binoculars can withstand the test of time, thanks to the top-quality chassis.

Eye relief is another vital factor to consider when choosing binoculars. To have a comfortable experience using your binoculars, you would want an eye relief of at least 16 mm. If you are wearing eyeglasses, you would definitely want optics with an eye relief of 16 mm. With adjustable eye-cups, these Bushnell binoculars are perfect for you whether you are wearing eyeglasses or not. The H20 roof prisms are comfortable to use for hours.

Another good thing about the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular is that you can conveniently carry it wherever you go because of their compact design. Roof prism technology is a little more complex than the zig-zag of porro prisms, but the straight lens design means they can fit in your cargo pockets.

Whether you are climbing the highest mountains or exploring the vast sea, you won’t have difficulties bringing it around. It comes with a durable carrying case with a belt loop, and a neck strap. These accessories also give you peace of mind, providing additional protection to your binoculars when you are not using them.

Bushnell H2O 10X42 Accessories

What We Didn’t Like

You may find the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular too bulky after continuous hours of use, as it weighs 25 oz. Depending on your strength and endurance, and how you carry these binoculars, you might eventually find them too heavy. Wearing them around your neck might cause strain after a couple of hours, too. However, the good news is that they have a carry case you can easily strap on you, thanks to the belt loop.

Another issue encountered with these binoculars is that the focus may need to be adjusted frequently, especially in harsh environments. If you are wearing gloves, you may likely experience difficulties adjusting the central knob to focus on your subject.

Lining up the two fields of view into one circle can be tedious when on the move. Comparing this with more expensive roof prism binoculars like the Nikon Prostaff 7S, it’s evident how the experience focusing is better. Whether that’s enough to justify the jump in price is up to the individual.

About the Company

Bushnell is a reputable industry leader when it comes to sports optics, providing high-quality and reliable products at affordable prices. For over 60 years, it has been making every outdoor activity more enjoyable, be it birding, fishing, hunting, spectator sports, or stargazing. It also has products dedicated to indoor activities, allowing you to have the time of your life watching concerts and fast-moving sports in crowded arenas.

Many of Bushnell’s products have bagged design and performance awards. With the company’s cutting-edge engineering and commitment to innovation, its products are some of the most trusted sports optics products in the market today.

Besides developing innovative sports optics gear, Bushnell also recognizes its social responsibility as an industry leader. Since 2011, it has been a partner of Folds of Honor, an organization empowering soldiers’ families with educational support. Each time you purchase a Bushnell product, a portion of the revenue goes to the organization.

Bushnell H2O 10X42 Front View

Summary

Boasting Bushnell’s award-winning engineering, the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular is surely an excellent choice for use in marine or wet environments. They are an affordable and compact pair with a mid-range performance profile that will impress you if you don’t have a high-end binoculars with which to compare.

You’ll want this if you’re looking for something smaller than porro prism binos that can take a beating and provide a decent image at an affordable price.

With its 10x magnification and 42-mm objective diameter, it is more than just a waterproof pair of binoculars. It can also be used for hunting, thanks to its impressive light transmission that delivers great image quality even when there is little light.

These binoculars have impeccable construction. With a shock-absorbing chassis and a non-slip grip, they can give you the confidence you need to thrive in the wild outdoors. It does not matter how tough the situations get— these Bushnell binoculars got you covered.

See the complete list of the best Bushnell Binoculars here!

What We Like

  • Excellent light transmission
  • Rugged, waterproof, and fogproof construction suitable for challenging, wet conditions
  • Shock-absorbing chassis
  • Superior eye relief
  • Carry case with belt loop

What We Don’t Like

  • May be too heavy for long periods of use on the move
  • Takes longer to focus in challenging conditions leading to some kidney bean effect

Where to Buy:

Where to Buy:

FAQ – Frequently asked questions about Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binoculars

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    What is the best pair of Bushnell binoculars for marine or wet environments?

    Bushnell has a couple of binoculars that are intended for marine or wet environments. However, one of the hottest models in the market today is the Bushnell H2O 10×42 Waterproof Binocular. Besides being fogproof and waterproof, it also comes with a non-slip grip and a chassis with shock-absorbing properties. Check out this comprehensive review to learn more about different Bushnell binoculars.

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    What features and qualities should I look for in waterproof binoculars?

    When buying waterproof binoculars, you need to look for those with O-ring sealing and heavy-duty body construction that can withstand the test of challenging environments. While these are not the only important features that waterproof binoculars should have, these two features set them apart from general-use binoculars.

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    What are the benefits of nitrogen filling and O-ring sealing?

    Nitrogen filling prevents moisture from entering the optics. With this purging, moist will not trouble you while using your binoculars even when the temperatures suddenly drop. It is what allows you to see clearly even when the conditions get foggy. Meanwhile, O-ring sealing protects your binoculars from debris, dust, and moisture that may damage them over time.

  • image/svg+xmlimage/svg+xml
    What is the minimum eye relief that I should look for in binoculars if I’m wearing eyeglasses?

    If you are wearing eyeglasses, you need binoculars that have at least 16 mm of eye relief. Otherwise, you will not be comfortable using your binoculars at all. Of course, you can still use binoculars with an eye relief of less than 16 mm, but you will only find it difficult and uncomfortable. If you are not wearing eyeglasses, binoculars with at least 12 mm will suffice.

  • image/svg+xmlimage/svg+xml
    What is the difference between roof prism and porro prism optics?

    Porro prism optics have an offset construction where the objective lens is not aligned with the eye-glass. The light gets pinballed around creating a crisper ímage with a better depth perception. Generally, a wider field of view too. Roof prism design has gotten increasingly better and can compete with porro prisms, but it’s in their compact construction that makes their application appealing for some. Like the Bushnell H20s and the Nikon Prostaff 7S, compact doesn’t need to mean inferior.

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