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Bresser Pirsch 8×34 Binoculars: Our Review

A lightweight binocular with a comfortable feel and elegant looks, but with some image imperfections especially at middle and long distances. We ranked it in the Middle Ground in our review.

At A Glance

green and black binoculars
Bresser Pirsch 8×34 binoculars. Photo by Hugh Powell.


  • Elegant, comfortable open-bridge design
  • Large eyepiece lenses good for glasses
  • Lightweight


  • Not especially sharp at middle distances and beyond
  • Edges of image can be fuzzy or distorted
  • Eyepieces have a loose feel
  • Poor close focus


  • Price: $220 MSRP at press time. Prices often fluctuate, so check with retailers
  • Close focus: Listed as 6.6 feet (200 cm). In tests, we could only focus these binoculars to about 10.3 feet (315 cm)
  • Field of view: 7.0° (368 feet at 1,000 yards). More about field of view 
  • Weight: 16.2 oz (458 g)—that’s about 1.6 oz (44 g) lighter than the average for compact binoculars in our review. Compare binocular sizes and weights
  • Eye relief: 15.7 mm

Viewing Experience: The Bresser Pirsch binoculars have an elegant open-hinge design and big, inviting eyepieces, but our testers found the optics didn’t quite deliver. The view was good at close range, but at middle distances and beyond it was less sharp and crisp than several competitors. A slight hazy quality and some warping at the image edges became distracting as we tried to follow a fast-swimming trio of young Hooded Mergansers on a pond in late summer. On a breezy, gray-sky day, the binoculars brought out a tinge of rose-pink on a backlit House Finch, but couldn’t resolve the brown of a Brown-headed Cowbird in similarly harsh lighting. The field of view is narrower than most compact binoculars in our review. We were surprised to find the close focus was more than 10 feet, considerably more than the listed specification. The focus wheel was smooth and easy to use, but stuck just a little at the edges.

Feel and Build: These binoculars are among the most light and comfortable of the compact binoculars we tested—largely due to the slender barrels and the elegant open-hinge design, which left plenty of room to curl our fingers around the entire barrel. The binoculars are covered in a hard rubbery green housing, with no texturing or indents. The focus wheel was wide enough to operate comfortably with two fingers. The eyecups adjusted to three settings, but we found considerable play and friction as we dialed the cups in and out. The diopter adjustment ring was extremely stiff—hard to move but presumably unlikely to drift out of adjustment once set. The neck strap was medium wide and comfortably padded.

Comments From Testers:

  • Dimmish
  • Hard to get in focus
  • Wiggly eyecups

This article is one in a series of mini-reviews. To see how these binoculars compare to others we’ve tested, see our full review of affordable compact binoculars.  

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