Differences Between Binocular And Monocular Microscope

Out of many differences, the obvious difference between a monocular microscope and a binocular is the physical look. The way of using both is also a factor.

Binocular microscopes consist of two eyepieces and great for a long time. Meanwhile a monocular shape like a telescope. It contains a single lens. If you aim to hunt or view objects longer, read on to discover the differences between the two and which is best suited for you.

What is monocular?

What is monocular

The monocular microscope definition is simple; a compound microscope with a single eyepiece. It's a set of binoculars cut in half and somehow similar to the one viewing tube. Its magnification is limited to a maximum of 10x. Monoculars are ideal to view large microbes and small particles like lead veins, insects, algae, and more.

Monocular Features

Let’s have a look at some of the features of monoculars that proves more than a one-eyed binocular:


Monoculars are quite lightweight. They come with straps that make it a lot easier to wear them around your neck. If you are going out hunting or trekking, monoculars are a much better option.

Magnification of Monocular

Monocular is just half the size of binoculars and it comes with different sizes to fulfill different needs. For instance, you can get 8x25, 8x36, 10x42, 16x50, or any other, depending on your needs. The higher the number, the brighter the image will be. It indicates that you can view images even in low-light situations. 

Lens and prism

The monoculars mostly use the Porro prism design that Ignatio Porro develops. It works on the principle of a curved lens that acts with a prism. Its lens is designed in such a way that captures light from distances and amplifies it. Meanwhile, the prism takes the image and inverts it. The image processes when the light is amplified because of the lens shape. 

Field of view

Monocular microscopes offer a distinct edge in night visions. Also, they won’t ruin your natural night sight at all. These microscopes offer the same field of view as a telescope. They are well-known for providing a true field of view.

The field of view is less of a concern as they are best for the target spot. That is why the result is better in monocular microscopes.

What is binocular?

What is binocular

If you are looking for a real general-purpose optic, a good set of binoculars is all you need. They are compatible to use in almost every condition. Besides that, they are best to use for optic enhancement. These microscopes are convenient to use even for an extended time. Binoculars are best to use while sporting events and tracking the moving object.

Binocular Features

Let’s have a look at some of the features of binoculars:

Prism and lenses

The binoculars mostly work off three systems i.e. Porro, Roof Prisms, and Galilean. The Porro and roof prism styles are later evolved with Galilean binoculars, and it makes modern binoculars.  The most expensive part of the entire optic is a prism, and lens and binoculars have two of them so that it can be costly. 

Magnification of Binocular

The magnification of digital monocular microscopes and binoculars is the same as they come with the same amplification levels. They tend to provide a clearer image by amplifying but don’t quite boost it enough for distant objects. You can get compact, mid-size, or full-size binoculars according to your needs. If you want something lightweight, then you should get compact binoculars. 

Field of view 

The best thing about binoculars microscope is that they offer the biggest field of view even if you buy the cheapest quality. The twin viewing tubes allow you a wider vision range. That’s why it is ideal for scanning, watching, scouting, and scanning. 

What is the difference between monocular and binocular? 

What is the difference between monocular and binocular?

As mentioned earlier, a monocular microscope has one lens, and it looks like a telescope. On the other hand, binoculars consist of two lenses that make it easy to use for a long time.

Here are some of the key differences between both these optical instruments:

Weight and size

Monoculars and binoculars are not the same in size and weight. If you are looking for something small that fits into your pocket, then you should choose monoculars. Binoculars are heavy and hard to wear in your neck for long journeys. Moreover, it occupies more space even in your traveling bag. 

Viewing and quality 

Monocular offers the best and magnified view, and you may find it a bit flat compared to binoculars. But, in terms of a more clear and 3-dimensional view, you should opt for binoculars. Binocular also allows you to adjust it to enjoy a better focus. But, the monocular has a single lens, and you can hardly adjust it. 

Monocular vs. binocular microscope - What to choose?

Monocular vs. binocular microscope - What to choose?

Both of these products come with different perks. You should buy one according to your preferences and needs. 

You should go for a Monocular only if:

  • If you intend to use optimal instruments for a long time, it would be very difficult for you to carry or wear binoculars. So, you need something lightweight and portable. Binoculars are quite smaller and lighter as compared to binoculars, so you can easily carry them around. 
  • It is the most suitable option if your budget is a little bit tight. If we compare it with monoculars, you will know that monoculars are available at much lower prices.
  • It is best to be used for hunting, birding, reading, and even for stargazing. Its history is linked to other magnifying objects.  

You should go for a Binocular only if:

  • You need to use binoculars for a long time, so it can get hectic to use one eye to view objects. So, in that case, choose binocular instead of monocular to give your eye some relief.
  • If you prefer a quality image and a better field of view, then binocular is the best choice. As you will be using both eyes, it will offer a more clear view, overall depth, distance, and 3-dimensional view. 
  • It is best to use for hiking, birding, hunting, golf, and other sports events. 

Wrapping up

There are different types of binocular and monocular microscopes available in the market. But, you need to be specific about your requirements before you opt for one of them. Monoculars seem like the ideal option to choose if you are traveling or hiking. Moreover, it is highly recommended if you are planning to view objects that are too far.