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  1. #1
    mufc4ever's Avatar
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    Default Amateur Astronomer Celestron vs Bushnell Binoculars?



    Hi, I'm an amateur astronomer and everywhere I look it says that before getting a telescope (especially for someone on a budget like me) you should get bino's.

    So now I am picking between Celestron Skymaster 15x70's

    and

    Bushnell Astralis 15X70 Water Proof Binoculars

    Do any of you guys know which one of these are better, or just the quality of the companies as a whole?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated,

    Thank you

  2. #2
    jrkirkham's Avatar
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    I don't have either, but a lot of the people on the forum talk about the Celestron 15X70's. They have some weaknesses, but most think they are the best bargan for the money. You might want to scan some of the threads in the binocular forum.
    Rob
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    Main Scopes: Orion XT10, Dob / ES ED80T / Orion 90mm Mak-Cass / 50 mm Galileoscope refractor / Celestron 8" SCT / Orion Sirius Mount / Various cameras and lenses

  3. #3
    Joe Lalumia's Avatar
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    You will need a tripod to hold either of those. UNLESS you are Hulk Hogan!
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    The Celestrons are known for their collimation issues. I have a pair that are kind of inconsistent, but when they're on, they're excellent. Some other dude on here bought a pair, had the same problem, and he fixed them himself by playing with the prism alignment screws, which are easily accessible.

    I don't know about the Bushnells. I have heard great reviews about Bushnell Legends though, but I think they're a bit pricy and I don't know if there's a 15x70 in that line.
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  5. #5
    Happyfeet's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mufc4ever View Post
    Hi, I'm an amateur astronomer and everywhere I look it says that before getting a telescope (especially for someone on a budget like me) you should get bino's.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated,

    Thank you
    I believe this to be the wrong advice in many cases as someone who already knows a bit about the night sky needs power, not the ability to see the night sky.

    If I were you I'd start browsing craigslist for telescopes and try to catch a bargain to at least play around with until I have enough money to get a decent scope.

  6. #6
    Joe Lalumia's Avatar
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    Happy, I must say that I do not agree with you. Beginners are much better served by buying a nice pair of binoculars and learning a little bit about the night sky, before they buy their first telescope.

    Magnification (power) is the least important quality of a telescope. Aperture and quality optics are much more important than magnification. Craigslist is just about the worst place for a beginner to search for a telescope. Most of the scopes listed their are junk or what we call "department store" telescopes.

    You must know EXACTLY what you are buying -- NEVER use Ebay, craigslist, Wal Mart, or CostCo as your source for a telescope, unless you know the scope is suitable from your research.

    The Astronomical League awards a pin and a certificate for completing the Binocular Observing Club.

    Here is an example of what you should be able to see with a pair of 10x50mm binoculars in a Yellow or Green light pollution viewing site.

    Binocular Messier Club - Appendix A | The Astronomical League
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  7. #7
    Happyfeet's Avatar
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    Joe, as someone who had a nice telescope before I had a plastic pair of binoculars I can say that sometimes in cases where a noobie has done a ton of research already, they can find themself ready for more power and better served by a lower end scope. The only reason I gave the advice I did, is that I come from an R/C plane community that had a very strict line of steps in what to buy. This sort of thing can sometimes lead to fast learners being pigeon holed and held back from getting into the thick of things.

    As far as craigslist goes, utter nonsense, there are sometimes amazing deals on decent scopes. If you have any knowledge of telescopes, and know how to google, you can see what the bad telescopes are very quickly. Many times I see orion scopes on craigslist that are the very scopes people here recommend as beginner scopes for less than half the price of them new.

  8. #8
    Joe Lalumia's Avatar
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    I guess we need to agree to disagree.
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  9. #9
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    A nice set of bino's is one of best way's for a new person to enter into astronomy! One can see so much more at low power widefields then one can with a telescope with smaller fields and high power.

    The key is to learn how to find objects in sky, which is more easily accomplished with binoculars; then move on to train one's eye! I have seen so many new people pick up a telescope and fight all night just to find one object, then they sell it on Craigslist in frustration.

    After nearly 10 years of viewing I still use my low power EP's 90% to 95% of the time. They offer the best views and most details!

    Just my own thoughts.

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    powervolume's Avatar
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    Binos are great for learning the sky, and even entry level DSO spotting. Hell, my most rewarding views of the Andromeda Galaxy are through binos because it doesn't fit into my widest eyepiece. Also, every object that I've confirmed, I've seen through my binoculars, except for one, which was MARK 421, a 13 mag quazar or blazar or whatever. My binos weren't powerful enough.

    A telescope is obviously more powerful, but binoculars are great in their own way, and not just in a whimpy way. They have some serious umph.

    Also, they're an excellent spotting tool for scope use. A 10x50 bino has more power than an 8x50 spotting scope. Also, something about a bino view's two eyepieces is extra satisfying. etc. etc.
    celestron skymaster 15x70
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