2018 Edition Viper HD Binoculars: Re-tooled and Venerable


Vortex Optics has taken its venerable Viper HD binocular line and re-tooled three of the most popular models for improved performance in key categories. The 10x42 model gets upgraded with a wider field of view and longer eye relief. The 10x50 binocular and more powerful 12x50 version get a significantly wider field of view and angle of view in a slightly smaller form factor, while also getting a broader interpupillary distance for easier use by those with narrower faces. Regardless of the model, they all benefit from a wider field and angle of view to make views more spacious, and viewing through them easier and more comfortable, while extending their use to more people.

Vortex 12x50 Viper HD Binocular

All Viper HD models share the same performance and construction features. Optically, this binocular benefits from proprietary XR anti-reflection fully multi-coated optics that maximize light transmission through the light path and improve contrast and color rendition across the entire visual spectrum. The compact roof prisms have dielectric and phase-correcting coatings that limit internal interference, light loss, and diffraction while maximizing light transmission through the prism system. These features work together to produce bright, sharp, and clear high-contrast views with accurate color fidelity and crisp resolution—all with wide fields of view, which help to limit the appearance of the distracting hand shake that is common with high-power optics, and provide an immersive observational experience.

Complementing the optical performance are construction details that allow the Viper HD to withstand the rigors of the trail. The optical tubes are argon filled and O-ring sealed to be waterproof and resistant to internal fogging if the weather turns or they take an accidental spill in a stream or puddle. Protecting the optical components is a polycarbonate chassis that is lightweight and durable, as well as resistant to the expansion and contraction that metal suffers from and which can lead to fuzzy views over time. Vortex includes a GlassPak binocular harness case that protects the optic when not in use, while keeping it close to your body, preventing swinging and swaying as you move or climb over rough and rocky terrain. Objective lens caps and a one-piece ocular rainguard protect the exterior lens surfaces. To keep the caps and rainguard safe during use, they are tethered to the body and strap, respectively.