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Binoculars review

Bushnell Nitro 10x42

Bushnell Nitro 10x42
15 April 2019
Optyczne.pl 
In 2018 Bushnell have revamped their binoculars offer almost completely. One of novelties presented that year was the Nitro series, consisting of three roof prism models with the following parameters: 10x25, 10x36 and 10x42.

When it comes to optical construction, the objectives feature low dispersion ED glass along with Schmidt-Pechan prisms and PC3 phase coating. The producer also boasts of the fact that all air-to-glass surfaces are covered by antireflection FMC multilayers and the outer lenses are protected by EXO Protection hydrophobic coatings, repelling water, dust, debris and preventing scratching.

The binoculars are nitrogen-purged and waterproof up to a depth of 1 meter for 30 minutes (IPX7 norm). Buyers get removable objective caps, a rainguard, a comfortable strap and two cases: a hard shell and a soft one. The binoculars come with a lifetime warranty from the producer.

Pictures
  • Lornetka Bushnell Nitro 10x42
  • Lornetka Bushnell Nitro 10x42
  • Lornetka Bushnell Nitro 10x42
  • Lornetka Bushnell Nitro 10x42
Manufacturer data

Manufacturer:

Bushnell
web site

Distribution / Sales:

Militaria
web site

Magnification Lens diameter Angular field of view Prisms Eye relief Weight Price
10 42 113/1000(6.4o) BaK-4/roof 17 mm 691 g 1199 PLN
Results of the review
Real front lens diameter Left:   42+/- 0.05 mm
Right:  42+/- 0.05 mm
8 / 8.0 pkt
Real magnification 9.79+/- 0.05x 3/3.0
Transmission 82.5+/- 1% 10/15.0
Chromatic aberration ED glass performs as it should. In the centre, chromatic aberration is practically imperceptible and it is low on the edge. 8.6/10.0
Astigmatism Corrected in a very sensible way. Point-like images of stars spark just slightly. 7/10.0
Distortion Distance of the first curved line from the field centre compared to the field of view radius: 44.2% ± 5% 4.5/10.0
Coma Appears in a distance of 70-75% of the radius from the field centre and approaches high values on the very edge. 6.3/10.0
Blurring at the edge of the FOV Blur occurs in a distance of 69% ± 4% from the field of view centre. 3/10.0
Darkening at the edge the FOV Noticeable. 3.2/5.0
Whiteness of the image Slight green hue. Transmission curve optimized for the centre of the visual range. 3.8/5.0
Collimation Perfect. 5/5.0
Internal reflections
Left: Right:
Bushnell Nitro 10x42 - Internal reflections - Left Bushnell Nitro 10x42 - Internal reflections - Right
A lot of light areas near tne exit pupil.
2.8/5.0
Housing Sensible when it comes to physical dimensions and quite handy for the 42 mm class. Comfortable to hold and to look through. Nice design. Rubber armour with noticeable texture so it clings to your hands quite well. Rubber eyecups with 4 stops perform as they should. Produced in China. 7.2/8.0
Focusing Huge, ribbed central wheel which moves smoothly and is well damped. Full turn amounts to 580 degrees. Ribbed ring which shifts up and down on the right eyepiece for dioptre correction – it moves the outer lens. 4.5/5.0
Tripod There is a quite comfortable exit. 3/3.0
Interpupilary distance from 54.4 to 73.7mm 4/6.0
Closest focusing distance 1.8 meters. 2/2.0
Eyepieces FOV Apparent field of view of 61.7 degrees. 7/10.0
Field of view Measured by us amounted to 6.30 +\- 0.03 degrees and was by 0.1 of a degree smaller than stated in specifications. A quite wide field of view for this class of parameters. 6.5/8.0
Quality of the interior of the barrels Dark, nicely matted interior of the tubes. Not expecially nice bottom. Not numerous specks of dust. 4.2/5.0
Vignetting
Left: Right:
Bushnell Nitro 10x42 - Vignetting - Left Bushnell Nitro 10x42 - Vignetting - Right
OL: 0.72%, OR: 0.33%
6/8.0
Prisms quality High quality BaK-4. 8/8.0
Antireflection coatings Pink on objective lenses, pink-green-yellow on eyepieces and greenish on the prisms. Medium intensity. 4.5/5.0
Warranty [years] lifetime 6/6.0
Final result
75.4%
128.1 / 170 pkt
Econo result 0pkt.

Summary


Pros:
  • solid, shapely and stylish casing,
  • significant field of view,
  • very good correction of chromatic aberration,
  • slight astigmatism,
  • sensible colour rendering,
  • sharp image already from 1.80 metres,
  • good quality prisms made of BaK-4 glass,
  • good quality antireflection coatings on all air-to-glass surfaces,
  • cleanliness and proper blackening inside the tubes,
  • lifetime warranty.

Cons:
  • huge decrease of sharpness on the edge of the field of view,
  • transmission could have been higher,
  • a bit too light areas near to exit pupils.

In our test the Bushnell Nitro 10x42 got a very solid result which put that pair of binoculars, within the margin of error, right next to more expensive models such as the Meopta MeoPro HD 10x42 and the Kowa BD 10x42 Prominar or, sold for a very similar amount of money, the Delta Optical Chase 10x42 ED. This fact in itself is alread a very good recommendation.


Bushnell Nitro 10x42, Olympus PRO 10x42 and Delta Optical Titanium HD 10x42 ED.

Any significant flaws? There are two things we definitely didn't like. First of them was a sharp decrease of resolution on the edge of the field and the second – too low transmission. For a pair of binoculars which producers boast of high quality coatings covering every air-to-glass surfaces the graph, shown by us below, is placed several percentage points too low.

When it comes to my personal opinion the binoculars impressed me in a very positive way. The result of our test is an important aspect but the handling and comfort of usage is also significant, especially that both are very individual, subjective criteria, hard to reflect in any testing procedures. In my opinion the Bushnell Nitro 10x42 is not only nice to look at; it fitted my hands and eye sockets in a perfect way so I enjoyed using it very much. I would have nothing against taking that piece of equipment for nature trips to the forest.

Finally one more remark. The binoculars are physically lighter than stated in the official specifications – without accessories the model we tested weighed 670 grams.