LUCID’s B-8 8×42 binoculars came packed in a waterproof hard-plastic box – which is similar to a Pelican case – cushioned with foam and protected by a silicone O-ring. It’s rugged as hell, and already solved one of the problems I’ve had with other binoculars, which got beat up and damaged in my bugout and range bags. LUCID’s hard case solves that problem.
Once out of the box, the first thing I noticed was the weight, or lack thereof. The B-8s only weigh a mere 24 ounces – that’s less than two pounds. Compared to other binoculars I’ve used, they’re almost weightless. For someone who has spent a lot of time wearing and holding binoculars, this is a major achievement.
The open-frame B-8s come with two neoprene covers, which are attached to the neck strap. These covers protect the binoculars very well, can’t get lost or misplaced, are quick to doff and don, and are infinitely better than the normal lens caps most binoculars ship with.
The neck strap is big, padded and breathable, a far cry from the thin straps that bite into your neck, which I was accustomed to putting up with. It’s got quick-release clips in both sides, and it’s fast to adjust.
I took the B-8s to the rifle range, kayaking and hiking through the high desert, from sunup to sundown. Temperatures ranged from 88 to 111-degrees. There was no humidity. I wore the binoculars constantly, throughout all of the tests.
At the range, the binoculars were perfect. I no longer need a spotting scope to check targets at distance.
I drug the B-8s through the sand and then dunked them in the river. The sand and water had no effect whatsoever. The lenses didn’t fog after they were dunked in the 65-degree water.
As expected, due to the B-8s light weight, I soon forgot I had them on, and they were small enough to tuck into my shirt when not in use. It’s an old habit. I’m not trying to avoid enemy snipers, I just don’t like binoculars bouncing around when I’m walking, and in my shirt, they won’t snag in thick brush.
The 8x magnification coupled with the 42mm objective were perfect for all of these pursuits. They gather light better than higher magnification; the clarity is simply amazing, and I like the wider field of view. The B-8’s twist-up eye cups are simple, quick and make them easy to use with or without glasses. The B-8s are incredibly ergonomic and very pointable, kind of like a good AR.