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    Default Need help choosing binoculars



    Hello everyone!
    I hope this is the right place to post a beginners' question.

    I'm new to deep sky observation. Until now I've been viewing the sky with un-aided eyes using a star map.
    I started using my father's 6X30 army binoculars, but now I want a more serious pair with which I can observe deep sky objects (Andromeda, Orion nebula, Pleiades and more star clusters, Jupiters and its 4 large moons, etc.)
    I did some research, but still find I have many questions. I would appreciate any help and advice.

    My questions are:

    1. I learned that for astronomy, a diameter-to-magnification ratio of 7 is preferable. Should I be strict about that? does that mean a 7X50 is better than a 10X50?

    2. As for magnification: I understand that for beginners a lower magnification is preferable, due to its wider FOV. On the other hand, I'd really like to get a significantly higher magnification than the 6X I've been using. Someone offered me a 15X70, but I feel that might have a too low FOV (not to mention much heavier). What would you recommend?

    3. A more concrete question: one of the possible candidates I found is a Meade 9X63, so two questions here:
    a. If anyone knows the specific binocular: what was their impression of it? (I think it's the Travel View model...)
    b. In general, is a 9X63 binocular a good idea?

    4. Maybe I should have stated it earlier, but I live in a light polluted area and observations in darker places might be rare (maybe twice or 3 times a year). I get a bit of darkness in my backyard (no street light reaches it) and on moonless nights I see even more.
    Does that mean the 9X63 binoculars' 7mm exit pupil and high light gathering ability will be a disadvantage? should I get smaller binoculars?
    Are there different things to considerate, knowing I'll be using it mainly in light polluted area?

    Even after a long research, I'm still really confused about the subject, and would be grateful for any recommendations, advice or tips you guys might have for me.
    It's a real treat to have this community here, and all the people willing to share their knowledge and help newcomers is a really wonderful thing.

    Thank you very much in advance!

    skywalker1 (was I surprised to find the username wasn't already taken ...)

    I hope that wasn't too long, and that my writing is clear. English isn't my first language, so I'm sorry for any mistake I made.

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    One of the first questions I asked myself before I got my 15 X 70 was, "Do you plan on using a tri/mono pod or free hold it?"
    Last edited by Braingasim; 12-01-2014 at 03:44 PM.

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    - 70° FOV - 1.25" and 2" barrel size; Meade Series 4000 filter ND96(0.9); Seben Laser Collimator LK1 31.7mm (1.25")
    ; TS Optics 15x70 LE Series Binoculars; Orion SteadyPix Deluxe Camera Mount & Home made LYBAR chair!

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    Oh, also, Welcome to the forums!

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    - 70° FOV - 1.25" and 2" barrel size; Meade Series 4000 filter ND96(0.9); Seben Laser Collimator LK1 31.7mm (1.25")
    ; TS Optics 15x70 LE Series Binoculars; Orion SteadyPix Deluxe Camera Mount & Home made LYBAR chair!

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    Thank you very much For the quick reply and the welcome!
    I think for now I'd prefer binoculars that are hand-hold-able.
    I think it will be more comfortable and mobile...

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    Welcome to the forum !! I am not qualified to answer your questions, but I will say that your English is very good. Glad you are here, I'm sure good advice will be forthcomming very soon.
    andro-mike-eda likes this.

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    Welcome! I would suggest 10x50. Pentax makes really good optics for a reasonable price.

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    Thank you all for the greetings! What a great, welcoming community!
    And thank you for the advice, Ahab1.
    10X50 really is what I see recommended most... might just go with that .
    I'll look up Pentax binoculars, although there are no binoculars of this brand in the telescope shops close to where I live.
    (They import Meade, Orion, Bresser, William Optics, Vanguard, Sky Master...)
    If I want a Pentax I'll have to buy it online.
    Thanks so much!

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    Hi Skywalker and welcome to the forum. Let me give you my own experience. I too live in a LP area about 40 miles north of San Diego. I've owned 7x50 binos for some time but have always been underwhelmed by their performance under the night sky. They work fine, but I always thought I wasn't seeing as much as I should have. The 'Awe" factor wasn't there and I think the LP had a significant impact on that. Recently I bought the Celestron Cometron 12x70s. Wow, what a difference!! These really open up the night sky in a way I wasn't expecting. So much so, I would rather go out with these instead of my scope. Seriously! The "fun" and "awe" factors have both come together to bring a very refreshing aspect to my stargazing. Even though they weigh 3 lbs. I find they are hand hold-able for short periods of time, they're not too bad in that regard. I do own a monopod though and it helps. I can't believe the detail that can be seen on the Moon with this pair.

    Anyway, I think 10x50s would be better than 7x50s in a heavily light-polluted area. But something a little bigger would probably be even better. 9x63, 12x60, 12x70, 15x70 are all viable options with reasonable prices and are manageable hand held more than you might think. Also, I think the 7mm exit pupil is an overstated "rule" that gets thrown out there. Everyone is different and the 7mm thing is a generalization that doesn't necessarily apply all the time.
    -Don-
    Orion StarBlast 4.5 mounted on an Orion Tritech II Field Tripod

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    Welcome to the forum. Don't get too wrapped up in exit pupil. The more magnification (the first number on binoculars ) and aperture (the second number on binoculars ) you have, the more you will see.

    My 15x70's have been great! The field of view is almost as wide as a smaller pair, 4.4°. Field of view depends on more than magnification, and varies with different designs.

    If someone has offered to loan you a pair of 15x70's, (or offer for purchase?) definitely take them up on that offer. They are a bit big, but I handhold them.

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    Default Re: Need help choosing binoculars

    Thank you' everyone for your help!
    I had a test on Thursday, so I studied all last week and didn't get to enter the forum, let alone do some more research on the binoculars subject...
    I'll take everything you guys said into consideration when I look it up.
    someone suggested I buy a 15X70 from an importer he knows, but it's still pretty expensive... we'll see.
    Thank you all!
    clear skies!

 

 
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