If you want to ogle wildlife on the cheap, get the Raven: This 8×26 binocular let our tester study the velvety antlers of a moose she spotted in Maine from a distance that kept her from spooking the animal. The waterproof housing also proved its worth in that rainy climate; she sailed through a soaking rainstorm without the Ravens showing a hint of a leak. And its light weight and petite size (4.5 x 4.25 inches) make these binocs worth packing, even for hikers who only reach for them occasionally. Bonus: The Raven comes with a useful microfiber lens cloth. $79; 10 oz.; carsonoptical.com
Gear Review: Carson Raven RV-826 BinocularThis 8x26 Raven binocular comes with a waterproof housing.