Kowa 8x42 BD II XD Wide-Angle Binoculars

Kowa 8x42 BD II XD Wide-Angle Binoculars
Key Features
  • Extra-Low Dispersion PROMINAR Glass
  • Phase-Corrected Schmidt-Pechan Prisms
  • Anti-Reflection Fully Multi-Coated
  • Oil-Resistant KR Exterior Lens Coatings
Engineered with a moderate magnification that contributes to its wide field of view, long eye relief, and wide exit pupil, the Kowa 8x42 BD II XD Wide-Angle Binoculars produce bright high-contrast images with true-to-life color and crisp clarity even when observing in low and challenging light.
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Kowa BDII 8x42 Overview

  • 1Description
  • 2Optical Performance
  • 3Use and Handling
  • 4Construction Details

Engineered with a moderate magnification that contributes to its wide field of view, long eye relief, and wide exit pupil, the Kowa 8x42 BD II XD Wide-Angle Binoculars produce bright high-contrast images with true-to-life color and crisp clarity even when observing in low and challenging light.

To deliver their performance, Kowa binoculars employ complementary technologies, including the use of proprietary PROMINAR extra-low-dispersion fluorite glass, anti-reflection fully multi-coated optics, and highly reflective C3 and phase-correcting prism coatings that work together to produce crisp, clear, and bright high-contrast images with accurate color rendition across the entire spectrum. Added to this performance is a short close-focus distance, an ultra-wide angle of view, and a comfortable eye relief, which produce an immersive observational experience for any user. The expansive field of view also reduces the need to move the head very much and makes viewing through the optic more comfortable.

Designed for extensive outdoor use, the lightweight magnesium alloy chassis is wrapped in a protective rubber armor with a slip-resistant textured grip to provide secure handling in cold and wet conditions. To ensure a compact and highly packable form factor, Kowa utilizes Schmidt-Pechan prisms that allow for slimmer optical tubes but deliver the performance of conventional roof prisms. The optical tubes are nitrogen filled and O-ring sealed to be waterproof and resistant to internal fogging when moving through extreme temperature or humidity changes.

Optical Performance
  • Moderate 8x magnification enables detailed observations of distant subjects like animals, athletes, and architectural details without sacrificing its wide field of view, long eye relief, and wide exit pupil
  • 42mm objective lenses deliver the light-gathering capability required for extended use during the pre-dawn and late dusk hours
  • Schmidt-Pechan prism design corrects the view while allowing for thinner optical tubes versus the more common Abbe-Koenig design
  • PROMINAR XD extra-low dispersion glass reduces chromatic aberration, which causes halos and fringing, for improved color rendition and contrast
  • Proprietary PROMINAR lens glass is made of chemically stable artificial fluorite crystal that is free of impurities, so it will not fluoresce in UV light or have a tint that can impede accurate color fidelity
  • Anti-reflection fully multi-coated optics improve light transmission, color rendition, clarity, and contrast
  • Phase-correcting prism coatings eliminate internal light diffraction to improve clarity and contrast
  • C3 prism coatings improve internal light transmission to higher than 99% across the entire visible spectrum to improve color rendition, clarity, and contrast
  • Short close focus distance of just under 6 feet enables users to make detailed observations of small subjects like bugs and insects or flora and fauna
  • Wide 66° apparent angle of view helps to minimize the appearance of the distracting hand shake often associated with high-power optics while offering an immersive observational experience
  • Spacious 429' field of view at 1000 yards
Use and Handling
  • Closed-bridge configuration provides a solid and stable platform for the internal focusing mechanism
  • Textured center focusing wheel is easy to manipulate, even in cold and wet conditions or when wearing gloves
  • Right-eye dioptric correction allows the user to fine-tune the focusing to their individual eyesight—even if they wear corrective lenses
  • Integrated 1/4"-20 threaded adapter socket on front of bridge hinge allows the optic to be tripod mounted with an optional adapter
  • Twist-up multi-position rubber eyecups for comfortable use and correct eye relief, with or without eyewear
  • Long 17mm eye relief reduces eyestrain and improves overall viewing comfort
  • Large 5.25mm exit pupil will completely cover pupils as the open and fully dilate in low light, ensuring the entire scene remains in view without vignetting
Construction Details
  • Prism design allows for thinner optical tubes, contributing to the overall compact form factor and providing a more comfortable feel in the hand
  • Lightweight and durable magnesium alloy chassis reduces weight without sacrificing strength and stability
  • Nitrogen filled and O-ring sealed to be waterproof and resistant to internal fogging when moving through extreme temperature changes or environmental conditions
  • Protective rubber armor provides a slip-resistant grip
  • Oil-resistant KR exterior lens coatings make it easy for dirt, sap, and oil to be cleaned off without smudges or residue
  • Light 22.5-ounce weight
UPC: 879110002156

Kowa BDII 8x42 Specs

Prism TypeSchmidt-Pechan
Objective Lens Diameter42 mm
Angle of View8.2° (Actual)
Field of View429' @ 1000 yd / 142.43 m @ 1000 m
Minimum Focus Distance5.9' / 1.8 m
Exit Pupil Diameter5.25 mm
Eye Relief17 mm
Diopter AdjustmentYes
Focus TypeCenter
FogproofYes, Nitrogen Filled
Water ResistanceWaterproof
Dimensions5.5 x 5 x 2" / 13.97 x 12.7 x 5.08 cm
Weight22.5 oz / 638 g
Packaging Info
Package Weight2.13 lb
Box Dimensions (LxWxH)8.5 x 6.5 x 3.2"

Kowa BDII 8x42 Reviews

Huge bang for the buck.

By Roger
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-11-29

I received these a few weeks ago, and I continue to be amazed at how good they are. Super wide, clear views with great contrast. Great eyecups. The size and weight are perfect, and I can hand hold them quite still. I doubt you can find anything better for $300 more. I own many binoculars and have viewed through many more. These are a steal.

Wow! Outstanding Binoculars!

By Jose
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2020-10-03

I've had my Kowa 8x42 BD II Wide Angle Binoculars for less than a month now and am already amazed at the optical quality. The Extra Low Dispersion Prominar Fluorite Glass, Anti Reflection Fully Multi Coated Optics, the highly reflective C3 and Phase Correcting Coatings on the Schmidt-Pechan Prisms really and truly produce bright, high contrast images. When you look through these binoculars, it's almost as if someone has turned on a light to illuminate the landscape. They're that bright! Needless to say, the impressive line-up of the aforementioned features also produces accurate, true to life color, even when observing in low and challenging light. The wide angle with its expansive 8.2 Field of View is terrific, making viewing that much more pleasant. The 17mm Eye Relief is very comfortable, too, and the Diopter Adjustment is very solid as are the twist-up eye cups. I also really like the large focusing knob. Focusing is quick and easy. Another big plus with these great binoculars is how lightweight they are. I can easily hold them for long periods at a time. Overall, they are superb binoculars in every way at a great price! With these Kowas, you more than get your money's worth. Again, thank you B&H for getting these to me so quickly!

Very nice binoculars

By Warren
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2020-09-08

I've had these for about a month and find them to be a great value for the price, easy to focus and good visibility in low-light situations

Terrible Neck Strap Attachment Design

By Michael
Rated 1 out of 5
Date: 2022-04-03

The binoculars are quite good, optically, but I refuse to give a high rating to ANY company who insists on using an antiquated, screwed-up neck strap design. This is the 21st Century, for G-d'S sake, and binocular companies should be able to come up with simpler means of attaching the neck strap to the binocular. If Kowa's engineers are incapable of doing this themselves, they should just copy the attachment design of companies like Swarovski, Steiner, et al. Because of Kowa's refusal to improve their attachment design, I'm going to rate their 8x42 BD II XD binoculars ONE star!

Nice binoculars

By Lisa
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2021-06-22

These are nice, clear, easy-to-use binoculars. They are lightweight and close focus. I have been using Leica 10 x 32 which are awesome but when I got progressive glasses, I needed something with a wider field of view. I wasn't able to afford super high-end binoculars again and these are perfect.

See any errors on this page? Let us know


Country of manufacture?

Country of manufacture?
Asked by: Mike
China. I received conflicting information but confirmed on my unit that they are made in China.
Answered by: Hang
Date published: 2023-01-17

Specs for this compare favorably to the Vortex ...

Specs for this compare favorably to the Vortex Viper, which I'm also considering. How does the view and build quality compare?
Asked by: Jim
Here is a link comparing the two field of view and build quality. https://bhpho.to/3oj77nu
Answered by: Reuben
Date published: 2021-11-07

These look like they are lighter and have a wider ...

These look like they are lighter and have a wider view angle than the Vortex Viper HD. How does the build and image quality compare?
Asked by: Jim
The image quality is outstanding. They are as bright as my Swarovski ELs and approach them, to some degree, in contrast and definition (sharpness), but, obviously, are not at that level. Theyre certainly not bad, though. I take my Kowas hiking a little more often than my Celestron & Swarovski binoculars.
Answered by: Jose
Date published: 2022-10-16

what kind of warranty?

what kind of warranty?
Asked by: Warren
Limited Lifetime Warranty
Answered by: Shalom
Date published: 2020-08-21
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