Author Topic: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope  (Read 233 times)

Rob Stevens

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ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« on: December 24, 2017, 04:00:35 PM »
Any suggestions?

 for a newbie



gausinoleac

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2017, 11:09:59 PM »
Costco has a Celestron 80mm on an alt/az for $99....the tripod had tubular steel legs, but still looks too thin and wobbly. . .under a hundred, and perhaps remount the scope down the road for a grabngo if they catch the insect...

Ethan Gechem

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2017, 11:37:47 PM »
Celestron Travel Scope 70mm isn't bad

canreosenbi

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2017, 02:54:25 AM »
If you're in a reasonably populated region, check your craigslist. People are always getting rid of small telescopes, often cheaply. Celestron astromasters and powerseekers are the most common of the ones that aren't junk.

Eric Castro

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2017, 05:18:07 AM »
Binoculars. Along with a planisphere, a book or two and a membership to the local astro club.

acbacema

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2017, 07:59:03 PM »
You know, I don't think binoculars are good for most beginners these days. Binoculars are only useful on DSOs, generally. Which requires a dark site trip for most people... which beginners are unlikely to take.

cieledrore

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2018, 11:49:25 PM »
Celestron and Orion both make good 15x70 binoculars that you can get for about $65 or $75. Under 100 that's the best you will do. You can see a ton with them including Orion Nebula, Andromada Galaxy, Lagoon, Eagle, Hercules cluster, Beehive cluster, etc. It's a much more natural and intuitive experiance than learning a scope. Holding steady may be an issue but sitting in a reclining chair or lying on your back can make it much easier. If needed a cheap simple photography tripod or monopod can give the stability you need. Getting a poor scope will be less likely to get someone hooked in my opinion.

selfjomargast

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2018, 04:02:10 PM »
Can you tell us anything about the intended recipient? That would certainly affect the choice of telescope.
Have you read the review Josh Roth and I did at skyandtelescope.com/$100scopes?

fronenfiten

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2018, 10:18:29 PM »
Low cost Telescopes

http://www.skyandtel...ost-telescopes/
http://www.scoperevi.../page1af.html#2

Starblast 70 - Not a bad choice - I would not mind having one of these.
http://www.telescope...28/p/103110.uts

Close - I considered buying this one at one time.
http://www.telescope...28/p/102008.utsCelestron Travel Scope - Not a bad choice if you want portability.I wouldn't mind having one of these.
http://www.telescope...pe-70-telescope

Teflon Mayorga

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2018, 06:03:00 AM »
Quote
Celestron and Orion both make good 15x70 binoculars that you can get for about $65 or $75. Under 100 that's the best you will do. You can see a ton with them including Orion Nebula, Andromada Galaxy, Lagoon, Eagle, Hercules cluster, Beehive cluster, etc.  It's a much more natural and intuitive experiance than learning a scope. Holding steady may be an issue but sitting in a reclining chair or lying on your back can make it much easier. If needed a cheap simple photography tripod or monopod can give the stability you need. Getting a poor scope will be less likely to get someone hooked in my opinion.
I started with 15x70 binos, and I'm not a fan. With that focal length, it's too tough to keep them steady - the image dances around too much. If I were recommending binos to a beginner today, I'd go 8x50 or something similar.
Sent from my D6603 using Tapatalk

kahrorisupp

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2018, 08:41:32 AM »
For use at home, for mostly lunar and planetary and the brightest of deep-sky targets, and in an area of moderate to heavy light pollution...

http://www.telescope...yCategoryId=331

It comes equipped with a 90° star-diagonal for astronomical use, and could be taken along on trips with ease to darker sites as well.Or, for darker home sites in addition to travel, this would also be worthwhile per dollar spent, and ideal for the Moon and brighter deep-sky observations...

http://www.telescope...40/p/102007.uts

Mario Carpenter

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2018, 10:34:40 PM »
<sup>I am a big fan of binoculars. Suggest 10X50s to start. If you have a photo tripod you can buy an adapter that will allow most binos to be mounted on the tripod for a steadier view. Anything above 10X can be very hard to hold steady. Even the 10X will show jiggle in the viewfinder but I use my 10X50s a LOT, always by hand. I also have 15X70s that I use by hand too. Takes a little technique to hole them steady but I will be getting a ball head for a tripod for them.</sup>

leypelepha

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #12 on: January 11, 2018, 12:36:36 PM »
Quote
Celestron and Orion both make good 15x70 binoculars that you can get for about $65 or $75. Under 100 that's the best you will do. You can see a ton with them including Orion Nebula, Andromada Galaxy, Lagoon, Eagle, Hercules cluster, Beehive cluster, etc. It's a much more natural and intuitive experiance than learning a scope. Holding steady may be an issue but sitting in a reclining chair or lying on your back can make it much easier. If needed a cheap simple photography tripod or monopod can give the stability you need. Getting a poor scope will be less likely to get someone hooked in my opinion.


I actually have a pair of those. I remain skeptical. It's the beginner's problem with small scopes and DSOs again; you need deep skies for them to be really interesting, you need to know where to look, and you need to know what you're looking for. I lend them to beginners all of the time. They are generally not enamored; most of the time, they cannot find anything. When they can, they're not swept away - it takes experience seeing to enjoy faint DSOs with small aperture. They don't know how to do averted vision and such and have trouble appreciating the view.

It just doesn't make sense to get beginners a starter instrument that can't do the very easiest and best targets there are; planets and the moon.

Also, cheap photography tripods are totally useless with them. I have one and tried that. They're incredibly awkward in general and can't be pointed anywhere near the zenith

vertcalnorsdef

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2018, 11:47:34 PM »
Quote
Celestron and Orion both make good 15x70 binoculars that you can get for about $65 or $75. Under 100 that's the best you will do. You can see a ton with them including Orion Nebula, Andromada Galaxy, Lagoon, Eagle, Hercules cluster, Beehive cluster, etc. It's a much more natural and intuitive experiance than learning a scope. Holding steady may be an issue but sitting in a reclining chair or lying on your back can make it much easier. If needed a cheap simple photography tripod or monopod can give the stability you need. Getting a poor scope will be less likely to get someone hooked in my opinion.


A few comments:

- Binoculars are most useful if the skies are dark. From an urban or suburban site, there is not so much to see. With a telescope, even a modest telescope, the planets and double stars can keep one occupied and interested.

- The Celestron and Orion (and other inexpensive) 15x70 Binoculars are a frequent topic of discussion in the binocular forum. Collimation is a big problem with them, if you are lucky enough to receive a pair that is collimated, sooner or later, usually sooner, the collimation will shift and the observer will be unable to merge the image. It is possible for a more experienced user to tweak some screws so the binoculars will be "conditionally aligned", that means usable for one particular eye spacing. But true collimation, that is not feasible.

Whether or not an experienced amateur wants to take on the challenges of these particular binoculars, I would not recommend them as a gift for someone just starting out. There are just too many corners that have to be cut to sell 15x70 binoculars for $75. One of the corners they cut is in the mounting of the prisms. A first timer may not even realize the binoculars are out of collimation, they just end up with an eye strain headache.

"Good" 15 x 70's that can be trusted, they cost several hundred dollars..

Jon

swarfestmatvo

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Re: ultimate sub 100$ gift telescope
« Reply #14 on: January 13, 2018, 08:19:47 AM »
Quote
It just doesn't make sense to get beginners a starter instrument that can't do the very easiest and best targets there are; planets and the moon.

I *strongly* agree with this.Beginners need some early wins if they're going to stay in this. Nothing delivers those wins like the moon and planets, and a 70mm refractor or 100mm reflector beats 15x70 binos easily on those targets.

And I say this as a committed bino observer who has given the "binoculars and a planisphere" advice to many, many people over the years. But how many people are in this hobby because that first view of Saturn or the moon through a telescope really knocked their socks off? And how many are in it because they saw Mwhatever in binoculars? I'm guessing the former outnumber the latter by a wide margin.

Fact is, there are more and better options for inexpensive telescopes right now than there have ever been. For around $100 you can get a stable scope with good optics that will show you tons of stuff, and for around $200 you can get a serious instrument that could keep you busy for years. It's a really great time to be an amateur astronomer.