Nikon Prostaff 3S vs 7S Binoculars – Which One is Better For You?

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You might have shortlisted the Nikon brand for buying binoculars. However, within the Nikon lineup, there are numerous models that are enticing, with the Prostaff series being the most well-known. To rescue you and make your buying decision smoother, I am going to provide a detailed guide on the Nikon Prostaff 3S vs 7S binoculars.

Nikon is a well-known brand in the world of optics, and two of its popular models are the Prostaff 3S and Prostaff 7S binoculars. Trust me or not, both of these binoculars have their fan base among the users. The debate about these Nikon products is very common. 

So, which one is better? Nikon Prostaff 7s binoculars are ideal as they offer better optical performance, and durability and provide value at affordable pricing. If you have a very tight budget, then going with Prostaff 3s binos makes sense as they are cheaper options.

It was a brief introduction, but I am going to give more in-depth knowledge about these two Nikon products.  If you’re going to buy, but are confused about these two options, worry not, as an in-depth analysis is coming your way.

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Comparison Table of Nikon Prostaff 3s and 7s Binoculars

Feature Prostaff 3s Prostaff 7s Winner
Weight 22.92 oz 19.40 oz Prostaff 7s
Eye Relief 17 mm 15 mm Prostaff 3s
Image Quality Decent Ideal Prostaff 7s
Build Quality Compromised Strong Prostaff 7s
Value to Money Yes No Prostaff 3s
Prism Roof Phase Corrected Roof Prostaff 7s
Field of View 360 feet 320 feet Prostaff 3s
Lowlight Usability Compromised Ideal Prostaff 7s
Tripod Adaptability No Yes Prostaff 7s
Price / Affordability Check Price Check Price Prostaff 3s

Introduction to Prostaff 3s Series Binoculars

Introduction to Nikon Prostaff 3s

Nikon is a well-known brand, and I am sure that you have used a Nikon camera at some stage in your life. Well, I do have a Nikon camera in my house. But apart from producing cameras, Nikon also produces some top-class binoculars and Prostaff 7s and 3s are examples of their work.

Prostaff 3s binoculars were produced in 2016 after the success of the Nikon Prostaff 7s series. They are actually made to target those customers who have little power to spend on binoculars. No matter what specification you choose in 3s binoculars, the prices will be lower.

The performance of these binoculars is not ideal, but still, the users get a decent viewing experience by spending a small amount of money. Keep in mind that Prostaff 7s is considered the direct competitor of Prostaff 3s series binoculars.

Introduction to Prostaff 7s Series Binoculars

Introduction to Nikon prostaff 7s

Nikon introduced the 7s series in 2014 and they are considered premium products as these binoculars have all the features that an outdoor enthusiast needs. Both of these 7s and 3s have their special value in the market.

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As said earlier, Nikon has been among optics and lenses for years. Their experience helped them to manufacture these binoculars which became famous since their introduction in the optical market. I personally have used Nikon Prostaff 7s 10×42 binoculars, their performance actually impressed me.

Similarities between Nikon Prostaff 3s and 7s binoculars

Before going into details and giving you the differences between these two binoculars, I would like to give you some information about the similarities between these two binos. Knowing about common features will surely help you understand more about these Nikon masterpieces.

  • Both 3s and 7s binoculars have roof prism
  • Nikon Prostaff 3s and 7s binoculars are water and fogproof as both are purged with nitrogen gas.
  • Both of these two binoculars have a lifetime warranty and if you receive a faulty product, the company will replace it.
  • Both 3s and 7s series binoculars come with some useful additional accessories which enhance their value. 
  • Both are versatile in terms of specifications. Different magnification powers and objective lens sizes are available in these two models.

It was a brief introduction about the similarities, and the purpose of writing was to give you some basic know-how about them. No, let’s dive into more depth and explore more about the differences between these two binoculars.

What is the difference between Nikon Prostaff 3s and 7s binoculars?

As said earlier, both binoculars are very famous and their performance has impressed their users. This is the reason that the Nikon Prostaff series are most searched, and many people ask questions about them in online communities. As many people seem to be very curious about these Nikon products, this has forced me to write the complete guide so that my readers don’t remain confused in any way.

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1- Build Quality

No one likes to spend money on a product that is not actually strong. It is like putting your money at risk. I always recommend you choose binoculars that are very strong and durable. Now, let’s talk about Nikonrostaff 3s and 7s binoculars.

Both of these binoculars are made with rubber armor material which is considered decently strong. But, When you use a Nikon Prostaff 3s binos, you will feel like you have a fragile and delicate device in your hand. The rubber used in the Prostaff 3s is probably not as good as the rubber armor used in the Prostaff 7s series.

Winner: Nikon Prostaff 7s Binoculars.

2- Image Quality

Nikon Prostaff 7s binoculars have phase coated prism whereas the prism of the prostaff 3s binoculars doesn’t have phase coated prism which helps the 7s series binoculars to give you clearer and sharper images without any distortion. 

In phase-coated prisms, the manufacturer applies a special coating to the surface of the prism, which corrects phase shifts that can occur as light passes through the prism system. This technology increases the visual quality. Unfortunately, Prostaff 3s lacks phase coating.

Winner: Nikon Prostaff 7s Binoculars.

3- Weight & Size

Weight is also an important factor that plays an important role in providing you with a comfortable viewing experience. Nikon Prostaff 3s series binoculars are lightweight as compared to 7s series binoculars. 

Look, when the manufacturer makes a binocular more durable and stronger, the weight of that binocular goes up. Similarly, the 7s series is more durable and strong, and its weight is also high. The weight of Prostaff 3s binoculars is around 550 grams whereas the weight of Prostaff 7s series binoculars is around 650 grams. 

Note: The weight difference of 100 grams has a massive impact on the comfort of using them for an extended duration.

As far as the size of these binoculars is concerned, I don’t see any massive difference in them as both are decently sized and easy to carry in hands. In fact, you won’t get tired by carrying them for an extended duration.

Winner: Prostaff 3s Binoculars.

4- Field of View

The field of view is the area that you see through the barrel of binoculars. How wide a view you get while viewing through binoculars is called FOV. Binoculars having wider FOV are considered ideal for hunting. Prostaff 3s binoculars offer a wider field of view of around 360 feet to 380 feet. 

On the other hand, the Prostaff 7s series is not very good as their offer FOV is around 310 to 320 feet which is considered slightly below par. If you’re trying to buy binoculars for hunting, I don’t recommend you to go with 7s series binoculars. However, both binoculars are good for birding and other outdoor activities.

Winner: Prostaff 3s Binoculars.

5- Eye Relief

Do you wear glasses due to weak vision? If yes then you must care about eye relief and I suggest not buying those optics which have compromised eye relief. The Nikon Prostaff 3s binoculars have an eye relief of 17 mm which is considered ideal.

On the other hand, Nikon 7s series binoculars don’t come with ideal eye relief, however, you will still get decent eye relief of 15 mm. But I don’t recommend you to go with 7s series binoculars as they are not perfect for those who wear glasses. If you don’t wear glasses, then both binoculars are equally good.

Winner: Prostaff 3s Binoculars.

6- Prism type

Both Prostaff 3s and 7s binoculars come with roof prism type which is very good in providing you with ideal optical performance. But still, there is a difference that makes the 7s binoculars a slightly better option than the 3s binoculars.

The roof prism of 7s binoculars phase corrected which enhanced their visual quality and offered images with better contrast. On the other hand, the roof prism of 3s binoculars is not phase-corrected. You will notice the difference in the optical performance when using them in different lighting conditions. 

Winner: 7s binoculars because they have a phase-corrected prism.

7- Performance in low-light conditions

Both of these binoculars offer nice optical performance in daylight conditions. You won’t have any issues using them. However, when it comes to using binoculars in low light conditions, real talk starts about 3s vs. 7s binoculars because they differ.

The 7s binoculars have better lens coating layers on the lenses as compared to the 3s binoculars. Moreover, the roof prism of 7s binoculars is also phase coated which means that you’ll be able to see brighter visuals in low-light binoculars with 7s binoculars.

It is important to note that lowlight usability majorly depends on the size of the objective lens. If you choose a binocular with a bigger-sized objective lens, you tend to see brighter visuals. The reason is that the bigger-sized object captures or gathers more light for processing. 

Winner: 7s binoculars offer better low light usability as compared to the 3s binos.

8- Value to Money

Well, it’s hard to announce a value-to-money product as both offer excellent performance. But I am going a bit different way. For me, value to money means that binoculars offer decent visuals and save buyers some bucks. You take that as I am just trying to convey a message.

The 3s binoculars are inexpensive and offer decent performance in different outdoor conditions. I know their optical performance is not ideal – but still, by using them, you’ll be able to see everything clearly which fulfills your needs. 

On the opposite side, the 7s binoculars offer ideal optical performance, and you won’t find any issues while using them. But the issue is that the 7s binoculars are expensive and make it hard for the common man to afford. So, I consider 3s binoculars pure value to money binoculars.

Winner: Nikon 3s binoculars are better as they are available at affordable prices.

9- Tripod Adaptability

Tripodadapability is important for those people who have shaky hands or spend too much time using binoculars. When you choose a binocular with tripod adaptability, then you won’t have to carry a binocular in your hands, instead, you will be able to fit them in the tripod stand and start using them.

Nikon Prostaff 7s series binoculars can be fit on the tripod stand. In fact, they can be used by fitting them on the car mount. On the contrary, Nikon binoculars 3s series binoculars don’t have tripod adaptability and you will have to carry them in your hands while using them.

Winner: Nikon Prostaff 7s Binoculars.

10- Pricing and affordability

Budget is one of the most important factors that control the buying decisions of people. Nikon Prostaff 3s binoculars are cheaper and anyone having a very small budget can buy them. However, the performance of 3s binos is not ideal.

Nikon Prostaff 7s binoculars are expensive and you will have to increase your budget size to buy them. When you spend more, you always get more features and better performance. In terms of providing value, Nikon Prostaff 7s binoculars have no match.

Winner: Nikon 3s Binoculars.

Which one is the Ultimate Winner?

I love Nikon Prostaff 7s series binoculars due to their ideal optical performance and count them as the winner of the Nikon Prostaff 3s vs 7s binoculars battle.

End of the day, the choice is yours: however, my aim is to give you clear details of things so that it becomes easier for you to make your final decision. Nikon Prostaff 3s binoculars are very good but they are not perfect. 

One thing that I would say is that these 3s series binoculars fall in the budget category and you should not expect too many fancy features in them. In case you have got a tight budget, I recommend you to go with 3s series binoculars and which specification you need depends on your needs.

On the other hand, Nikon Prostaff 7s binoculars are premium and they do have many features that will enhance your viewing experience. However, keep in mind that these 7s series binoculars require a handsome budget.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which one is better in low light conditions – Prostaff 3s or 7s?

The Nikon Prostaff 7s binoculars are better suited for low light conditions compared to the Prostaff 3s. This is because the ProStaff 7s typically has a better optical system, plus their prism is also phase coated which enhances their visual quality. If low light performance is a priority, the Prostaff 7s is the better choice.

What are the main differences between the Nikon Prostaff 3s and 7s binoculars?

The main differences between the Nikon Prostaff 3s and 7s binoculars lie in optical performance and pricing. The 7s binoculars offer better optical performance, but they are expensive pairs. Prostaff 3s binos are cheap but offer slightly compromised performance.

Which one is better for hunting – Prostaff 3s or 7s?

The choice between the Nikon Prostaff 3s and 7s for hunting depends on your specific needs. I consider 7s binos a better option for hunting due to their better optical performance, they provide you with a wider field of view which is a must for hunting.

Are Nikon Prostaff 7s binoculars worth the higher price compared to Prostaff 3s?

Yes, If you prioritize superior optical performance, especially in low light conditions, then 7s binos are a suitable option for you as they offer ideal optical performance. However, for budget-conscious users or those with less demanding requirements, the Prostaff 3s can still offer good value and performance.

Do Nikon Prostaff binoculars come with a warranty?

Yes, Nikon provides a limited warranty for their Prostaff binoculars, including the Prostaff 3s and 7s models.


Both Nikon Prostaff 7s and 3s binoculars are excellent binoculars and you will get pure value in both of them. However, there are some differences that make them set apart from each other. In this guide, I have gone into the details and given you complete information about these two binos. I hope that my words will be useful for you in making your decision-making process a lot easier.

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