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Are these any good for starting astronomy?
on 13 December 2012
Maybe, like me, you're looking for binoculars for astronomy but don't know much about astronomy yet and are just starting out? You might also be wondering "if I buy them what will I actually see"? I've written this review to try and tell you (wish someone had done this for me).
You, like me, probably keep reading that you should buy the best you can afford and people talk about spending at least £75 on anything "worthwhile". Maybe I'm a cheapskate but, I thought, for this price, I'd try these first and upgrade if I had to. If this sounds like the decision you're trying to make then I'd say these are great value for money and "good enough" for a rank amateur astronomy starter like me.
Look, I don't know about barrel distortion or chromatic aberration or what have you. I was just trying to work out if I should pay £100 for 10x50 bins or get these low price ones and figure you (the reader) might be making that decision too. No doubt people more expert than I would complain about them and they don't instill too much confidence when they arrive, perhaps, but I can see crisp images of moon craters and if I mount them on a tripod (see bottom of review) I can even convince myself I've seen Jupiter's moon's. I can definitely see the Orion nebula (hey, look, it really isn't just a star) and the Pleiades simply pop out at you (so many stars in one place). OK, so the Andromeda galaxy is still just a smudge but it's a definite "something that looks like an oval mini-cloud" not a "have I seen it or not" averted gaze "wisp".
Am I pleased with them? Yes I am. Would I recommend them to you? Yes I would.
Do I think I'll grow out of them and want something more in 3 to 6 months? No, don't think I will.
Will I grow out of them and want more in a year or so? Yes, I'll probably get a telescope if I've still "got the astronomy bug", but I'll have seen loads of stuff by then for much less than spending £100+ and, if I don't "get the astronomy bug" then I've not spent a fortune and can use them for bird-watching and sports (also impressive for that too)...
Footnote on tripod mounting: You will need to buy an L-adaptor but they do have a tripod mounting screw socket to use one with - wasn't clear from the pictures so thought I'd pass that on