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christos nicolaou

Alyssa A.
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Canon 10×30 Image Stabilization II Binoculars

The Canon 10×30 IS II is the world’s most compact ISB. Image-stabilized binoculars (ISBs), powered by batteries, have a mechanism that will correct shakes and tremors with a single push of a button. If you are a casual user of binoculars or just starting, you will be surprised by what these binoculars can do.

ISBs have significantly changed the way we experience glassing. They are so versatile that they can be used for practically all applications, even stargazing and other astronomical viewings. More importantly, they have eliminated the need for additional paraphernalia like tripods.

Canon has many ISBs with different magnifications and objective lens diameters. However, the Canon 10 x 30 IS II is one of the most famous and most trusted pairs of ISBs today. Let’s dive in to find out how its IS system works and what other features give it its reputation!

Our Overall Review

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


Reasons to buy

  • Improved IS technology with faster startup time than its predecessor
  • Suitability for all light conditions and various applications
  • Superior edge-to-edge clarity with doublet field-flattener lenses
  • Compact design
  • Anti-reflective exterior coating ideal for direct sunlight exposure
  • Energy efficient

Reasons NOT to buy

  • The battery case has no additional protective layer
  • Eye relief slightly lower than the recommended eye relief for eyeglass wearers
  • Huge eyecups


One of the leading manufacturers of ISBs today is Canon. For decades, it has been carrying a line of ISBs and a few years ago, it launched updated versions of these binoculars. One of these updated versions is the Canon 10×30 IS II. So what exactly did change about these ISBs?

One of the significant improvements is its IS technology. According to Canon, it has integrated a higher-performing microcomputer with advanced algorithms in these binoculars. Essentially, the result is an IS system that is better than ever. Practically, a noticeable change is the faster startup time. These binoculars, powered by either two AA alkaline batteries or two AA NiMh batteries, also have better energy efficiency and consumption.

The Canon 10×30 IS II is a high-range pair of binoculars that can perform in every application you could think of under any condition. Whether you need ISBs for bird watching, hunting, wildlife observation, or casual activities like watching live events, it can serve you well, especially with its state-of-the-art IS system. It is definitely an all-around pair of binoculars that you can even use for stargazing.

However, if you are a beginner, you might find these binoculars too expensive for a 10×30 pair of binoculars when there are many cheaper alternatives in the market. In this in-depth guide, we will look at what these ISBs can do for you and if it is indeed worth the investment. Let’s dive in!

See the complete list of the best Binoculars here!

Canon 10x30 Image Stabilization II Binoculars Standing

Canon 10×30 Image Stabilization II Binoculars: Key Specifications

  • Product Dimension: 5” x 5.9” x 2.76”
  • Product Weight: 21.16 oz (excluding batteries)
  • Power Source: 2 AA Alkaline Batteries or 2 AA NiMh Batteries
  • Angular Field of View (Real): 6 degrees
  • Angular Field of View (Apparent): 55.3 degrees
  • Exit Pupil Diameter: 3 mm
  • Eye Relief: 14.5 mm
  • Close Focus Distance: 13.78’
  • Porro II Prism
  • Manual Focus System

Where to Buy:

Image Quality

As its name implies, the Canon 10×30 IS II is designed with Canon’s new, state-of-the-art IS technology. This technology significantly optimizes the viewing experience and stabilizes the images you perceive, eliminating your need for a tripod or any additional support.

Canon’s IS technology is innovatively possible because it uses a vari-angle prism (VAP), placed between the front optics and main prism. A VAP addresses and corrects external shaking when the motion sensors detect movement. An updated version of the first Canon 10×30 IS, these binoculars boast an optimized IS technology that comes with a higher-performing microcomputer engineered with advanced algorithms. One of the most noticeable improvements is in the time it takes to engage the IS system once the button is pressed. It only takes a second to stabilize the images after pressing the button, while its predecessor takes three seconds.

The Canon 10 x 30 IS II features a Porro II prism, which works perfectly with a 10x magnification and a 30-mm objective lens diameter to deliver unparalleled brightness and clarity. Together, these specs guarantee as little light loss as possible.

Another vital feature of these binoculars is their double field-flattener lenses. These lenses correct the curvatures that blur images, particularly around the edges. As such, the edge-to-edge clarity of these binoculars is also quite impressive.

Canon 10x30 Image Stabilization II Binoculars Vision Quality

Construction Quality

Binoculars with a 10×30 configuration belong to the compact category, and that is exactly what these binoculars are— compact and lightweight. That comes at a cost though, with the electronics being a little more susceptible to damage when dropped than analog binos.

But Canon’s IS IIs have better external construction than their predecessor, fitted with a matte front cover and an anti-reflective exterior coating. These features make them suitable for use even when exposed to direct sunlight.

Further, the Canon 10 x 30 IS II’s focus knob has a rubber coating, making it easier to adjust. Having a smooth focus wheel is an expected complement to IS technology and a pair of binoculars at this price. Many buyers too have noted this ease of adjustment, especially given the reality that many binoculars have sticky focus wheels.

These binoculars are also said to be more energy-efficient than their predecessor. Powered by either AA alkaline batteries or NiMh batteries, they come with advanced power-saving technology. According to Canon’s testing standards, the IS system lasts for up to nine hours before you need to replace the batteries. We can say that–despite notable improvements on the predecessor–on colder days this doesn’t hold true.

But the improved energy efficiency is not the only sustainable aspect worth noting about the Canon 10 x 30 IS II. Its lenses are made of lead-free glass, which has little to no carbon footprint. That being said, you can trust that it would not have harmful effects on the environment.

Canon 10x30 Image Stabilization II Binoculars Quality

Ergonomics and Comfort

These binoculars have a pretty decent eye relief, especially for those who are not wearing eyeglasses. With an eye relief of 14.5 mm, they can be used for prolonged hours without causing discomfort or obstructing the entire field of view.

As we have already mentioned, the Canon 10 x 30 IS II is a compact pair of binoculars. This compact construction makes it portable and easy to carry wherever you go, even when hiking to the highest peaks. They are a little heavier and less comfortable than analog pirro prism binoculars with the same magnification and that’s to be expected.

Canon 10x30 Image Stabilization II Binoculars Ergonomics And Comfort

The Good

Of course, it is impossible to talk about all the good qualities of these binoculars without their IS system coming up first. The main selling point of ISBs is that they stabilize images with a single press of a button, which comes in handy during prolonged hours of use, when you deal with hand tremors, and when the surroundings make it difficult to enjoy stable glassing.

However, what makes these binoculars stand out from many ISBs and different from their predecessors is the speedy startup time of their IS function. Once you press the button, it only takes one second for the IS system to activate completely.

Its predecessor is perfect for all applications given its compact size, magnification, objective lens diameter, and IS technology. The same pretty much goes for the Canon 10×30 IS II, working perfectly fine in all lighting conditions. With its enhanced IS system, it can be used for bird watching, wildlife observation, and even stargazing. Relatively, the IS technology gives it a significant edge over most 10×30 binoculars.

An exceptional IS system is no good if the images blur nonetheless. Canon has made sure that these binoculars have superior edge-to-edge clarity, equipping them with doublet field-flattener lenses. With these lenses, you can enjoy the sight of crisp images with the entire field of view clearly visible through your binoculars.

The Canon 10×30 IS II is also known for its lightweight construction. Without the batteries, it only weighs less than 22 oz., making it totally convenient for you to carry. It can be the perfect companion as you climb the highest of peaks or as you hunt in the wild.

Another significant feature that can be easily overlooked is the anti-reflective exterior coating, which minimizes reflection and prevents light loss. Even direct sunlight exposure will not compromise image quality.

Lastly, the Canon 10 x 30 IS II comes with better energy efficiency than its predecessor. Its IS function will last as long as probably 8 hours before you have to change the batteries. If you only need your ISBs casually, you will find this improved energy efficiency and consumption advantageous since you won’t have to change batteries frequently.

What We Didn’t Like

These binoculars are battery-operated, which, in a way, means that they require extra care. They are waterproof, but the battery case does not come with an additional layer of protection to give you 100% confidence in extreme situations. Of course, having battery-operated binoculars also means that you always need to carry a few extra batteries during long hours or days of excursions. Otherwise, the IS function will be of no use.

The Canon 10 x 30 IS II only has an eye relief of 14.5 mm, which is slightly lower than the recommended eye relief for eyeglass wearers to have a comfortable viewing experience for hours. It might do for a while but after some time, it may cause some discomfort. If you are not experienced using different types of binoculars and practically a beginner in this arena, it might not be the best option for you yet.

Another thing to be wary of about these binoculars is their relatively huge eyecups. Specifically, if you are a first-time user, you will likely find these eyecups overwhelming and to an extent, uncomfortable.

About the Company

A proud US company, Canon is an award-winning global leader in the imaging technology industry. It has always been at the forefront of product development since its foundation in 1955. Guided by its corporate philosophy, Kyosei, the company understands its environmental and social responsibility, and translates this understanding into action through its commitment to innovation.

It has earned several recognitions over the years for its outstanding contributions to the global industry. In 2019, Canon was named as one of the World’s Most Admired Companies by FORTUNE Magazine. In 2018, Ethisphere recognized it as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies, and that says a lot about its corporate integrity.

Canon has a wide range of product categories, including calculators, fax machines, printers, scanners, projectors, network video solutions, digital radiography, eye care, and many more. However, it is mostly famous for its cameras, and among outdoor enthusiasts, for its binoculars.

Canon 10x30 Image Stabilization II Binoculars Accessories


If you are looking for versatile binoculars that are practically perfect for all casual applications, the Canon 10×30 IS II is an excellent choice. It can be pricey for a pair of 10×30 binoculars, but it compensates with its cutting-edge IS technology, which is significantly better than its predecessor’s.

You will appreciate its superior performance in all light conditions, especially when you intend to use it for some casual stargazing. During the day, you won’t have difficulties perceiving images out in the wild even with direct sunlight exposure. It comes with an anti-reflective exterior coating that minimizes glare. Aside from having Canon’s improved IS system, it also boasts exceptional edge-to-edge clarity with its doublet field-flattener lenses. Whether you are a beginner or upgrading from your Canon 10×30 IS, these binoculars are definitely worth considering.

See the complete list of the best Binoculars here!

What We Like

  • Improved IS technology with faster startup time than its predecessor
  • Suitability for all light conditions and various applications
  • Superior edge-to-edge clarity with doublet field-flattener lenses
  • Compact design
  • Anti-reflective exterior coating ideal for direct sunlight exposure
  • Energy efficient

What We Don’t Like

  • The battery case has no additional protective layer
  • Eye relief slightly lower than the recommended eye relief for eyeglass wearers
  • Huge eyecups

Where to Buy:

Where to Buy:

FAQ – Frequently asked questions about Canon 10×30 Image Stabilization II Binoculars

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    What is the best pair of Canon image-stabilized binoculars (ISBs)?

    Canon is renowned for its ISBs, but our current favorite is the Canon 10 x 30 IS II. It comes with an all-new and improved IS system that engages faster than its predecessor’s upon pressing the button. It also has an improved energy consumption and efficiency. You can learn more about it in this comprehensive guide we have created for you here.

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    What are ISBs and how do they work?

    Image stabilization binoculars cut down on shakiness in the viewer. One of the most common problems with binoculars is that the images tend to get shaky, especially with higher magnifications. The longer you use them, the shakier the images get, too, particularly if you have hand tremors. You will likely have to use additional support like a tripod to obtain stable images.

    ISBs have an image stabilization mechanism that eliminates the need for additional support. Powered by batteries, they come with sensors that detect movement, which the IS system then corrects.

    The good thing about ISBs is that they are versatile and can perform in any terrain for any application. They are suitable for all kinds of activities, such as bird watching, boating, hunting, wildlife observation, and even stargazing. Check out this review of different binoculars to find out what binoculars are highly recommended for certain outdoor activities.

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    What is a vari-angle prism (VAP) in binoculars?

    VAP is Canon’s image stabilization technology initially developed for its camcorders. Today, it is widely used in its ISBs. So how exactly does it work?

    VAP comes with two sensors that detect horizontal and vertical motions. Once movement is detected, it is addressed by microprocessors to stabilize the images coming through the optics.

    There are various image stabilization technologies, such as gyro and mechanical. Canon’s VAP has many advantages over these other technologies. For one, it is compact and lighter. It also engages faster than other types of IS mechanisms.

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    What are doublet field-flattener lenses?

    When it comes to binoculars, rendered images tend to blur around the edges. Doublet field-flattener lenses help correct this problem, allowing you to see the entire field of view clearly without the curvatures blurring the images.


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