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Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD Review

A good pair of binoculars, but is easily outdone by other models in the same price range
Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD
Credit: Athlon
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Price:  $290 List | $272.96 at Amazon
Pros:  Good clarity, easy to focus
Cons:  Dimmer than competing models
Manufacturer:   Athlon Optics
By Max Mutter ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Jan 11, 2022
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
77
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#10 of 15
  • Clarity - 25% 7.0
  • Brightness - 20% 8.0
  • Ease of Adjustment - 15% 8.0
  • Construction Quality - 15% 8.0
  • Comfort - 10% 7.0
  • Close Focus Range - 7.5% 8.0
  • Field of View - 7.5% 9.0

Our Verdict

The Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD hits a slightly precarious balance point between price and performance. It costs more than a budget pair of binoculars and manages to perform significantly better than said budget pairs but falls substantially short of some of the other models in its price range. While we have no significant complaints about this model, it’s possible to get better performance while spending the same amount. If you manage to find these binoculars on sale, by all means, go for it, you’ll be getting a good deal. However, if you’re shopping at retail prices, we’d suggest looking at some of the other binoculars we tested.

Editor's Note: This review, initially published in November 2021, was updated on January 11, 2022 with additional product comparison info and recommendations.

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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Good clarity, easy to focusExcellent brightness, great clarity, comfortableGood clarity and brightness, smooth focus knobInexpensive, good clarity and brightnessGood clarity, small and lightweight, relatively comfortable
Cons Dimmer than competing modelsSlightly heavy for backpackingMediocre close focus range, mediocre field of viewAverage construction quality, mediocre low-light performancePoor low-light performance
Bottom Line A good pair of binoculars, but is easily outdone by other models in the same price rangeAn excellent balance of price and all-around performance with particularly impressive brightnessThese perform well for the price, offering a smooth focus knob and decent brightness and clarityThe most budget-friendly option we've found that offers a good introduction to birdwatchingAn inexpensive, small, and packable model that offers surprisingly good optics
Rating Categories Athlon Midas G2 8x4... Vortex Diamondback... Nikon Monarch 5 8x42 Celestron Nature DX... Vortex Diamondback...
Clarity (25%)
7.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
8.0
Brightness (20%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
6.0
5.0
Ease of Adjustment (15%)
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
Construction Quality (15%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
6.0
8.0
Comfort (10%)
7.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
7.0
Close Focus Range (7.5%)
8.0
9.0
7.0
8.0
8.0
Field of View (7.5%)
9.0
8.0
5.0
8.0
5.0
Specs Athlon Midas G2 8x4... Vortex Diamondback... Nikon Monarch 5 8x42 Celestron Nature DX... Vortex Diamondback...
Glass Type UHD HD ED ED HD
Multi - Coating XPL FMC FMC FMC FMC
Magnification 8 8 8 8 8
Field of View (at 1000 yards) 426 ft 393 ft 335 ft 388 ft 332 ft
Close Focus 6.5 ft 5.0 ft 8.2 ft 6.5 ft 6.0 ft
Eye Relief 17.2 mm 17 mm 19.5 mm 17.5 mm 18 mm
Prism Roof Roof Roof Roof Roof
Waterproof/Fogproof? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Size (Length x Width) 5.7 x 5.2 in 5.7 x 5.1 in 5.7 x 5.1 in 5.3 x 4.9 in 4.6 x 4.5 in
Weight 23.3 oz 21.8 oz 22.2 oz 22.2 oz 14.0 oz

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD is a good pair of binoculars that gets a bit lost in a price range that has a number of slightly better options.

Performance Comparison


Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD binoculars
Credit: Max Mutter

Clarity


The Midas G2 8x42 UHD provides a level of clarity that feels fair given the price, but other models that cost the same manage to outshine that price point.

The clarity of these binoculars is good — we had no trouble picking up small details in birds 30 feet away. However, the clarity fades a bit towards the edges of the image. While this didn't prevent us from identifying any species, it did make the image feel a bit flatter. Because of this, looking at a bird through these bins feels a bit like looking at a nature coffee table book. In contrast, some other products in this price range offered a slightly more immersive image that was more akin to watching a nature documentary.

Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD binoculars - the athlon midas g2 provides good clarity and brightness, but some...
The Athlon Midas G2 provides good clarity and brightness, but some models in the same price range manage to outdo it in both regards.
Credit: Max Mutter

Brightness


This is where the Midas G2 8x42 UHD falls a bit further behind other competitors in the price range. The brightness is good but falls well short of top-notch.

In normal lighting conditions, the Midas G2 8x42 UHD provides a bright image that allowed us to appreciate all the subtle colors of a bird's plumage. However, in low light conditions, those details quickly faded. At dawn and dusk and on particularly cloudy days, we were disappointed by dark bird silhouettes where other bins in this price range could still display an ample color palette.

Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD binoculars - the glass of the athlon midas g2 is good, but doesn't let in as much...
The glass of the Athlon Midas G2 is good, but doesn't let in as much light as that of some other models.
Credit: Max Mutter

Ease of Adjustment


The Midas G2 8x42 UHD provides a fairly standard experience when it comes to ease of adjustment. We had no specific complaints in terms of adjusting the focus knob and adjusting the diopter. Some models offer slightly more supple adjustment knobs, but we don't think anyone will be disappointed with nor have trouble adjusting the Midas.

Comfort


The Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD feels relatively good in the hand but lacks a few touches that make other models more comfortable to hold.

The rubber coating of these binoculars feels grippy but avoids feeling overly sticky, a problem we've run into with some other models. The barrels are relatively comfortable to hold, depending on your hand size. We really wish they had thumb indents on the underside, however. This would have made them more ergonomic and friendlier to a wider range of hand sizes.

Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD binoculars - the lack of thumb indents on these bins is slightly disappointing...
The lack of thumb indents on these bins is slightly disappointing, but we didn't find them uncomfortable to use.
Credit: Max Mutter

Close Focus Range and Field of View


With a close focus range of 6.5 feet, these binoculars are likely to allow you to get everything you'd like in focus. If you're lucky enough to get a butterfly to land on your shoe, that will likely be too close to get into focus, but otherwise, you should be good. If beautiful creatures have a tendency to land on your feet, other models in this price range can handle such a situation.


Offering a field of view of 426 feet at 1000 yards, the Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD has one of the widest fields of view on the market. However, even the models that it bests in this manner aren't that far behind, and you might be pressed to notice the difference outside of a direct, side-by-side comparison.

Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD binoculars
Credit: Max Mutter

Should You Buy the Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD?


In a price range where many manufacturers are aggressively competing to provide the best value per dollar, the Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD falls towards the middle of the pack. These binoculars aren't a particularly bad value, but we feel there are significantly better options available at similar price points.

What Other Binoculars Should You Consider?


The Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD is a good overall pair of binoculars, but they fail to offer a good enough performance to price ratio to rise above their many competitors. In a similar price range, we'd recommend the Vortex Diamondback HD 8x42, which bests the Midas in almost every test metric. For those on a budget looking for an intro pair for birding or viewing far-off scenery, the Celestron Nature DX 8x42 is sure to please. And if you have a bit more money to throw at a pair of binoculars, the Vortex Viper HD 8x42 offers top-of-the-line brightness and clarity.

Athlon Midas G2 8x42 UHD binoculars
Credit: Max Mutter

Max Mutter
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