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Celestron 15x70 - First Light

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#1 Photobud

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 11:57 PM

Actually got out, finally, tonight for a VERY brief look with my new binocs. 18° and light snow on the ground. Slight, thin cloud cover at the zenith. No chair and just a tripod that is too short to look toward the zenith. But what little I saw was GREAT! :D
Saw Jupiter and I believe 3 moons but that may have been wishful thinking. The moon was bright, sharp, and big. :)
All in all, a portent of wonderful times ahead. :jump:

#2 BobinKy

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:01 AM

Thank you for sharing your report with us. Did you receive a good sample of the Celestron 15x70? Yes, seems that you did. Congratulations.

#3 Photobud

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:28 AM

Thank you for sharing your report with us. Did you receive a good sample of the Celestron 15x70? Yes, seems that you did. Congratulations.

Thanks, tbey appear to be very good!

#4 hallelujah

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 01:29 AM

Bud,

Is a taller tripod next on your list?

Stan

#5 Photobud

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 08:29 AM

Bud,

Is a taller tripod next on your list?

Stan

Oh yeah! :lol:

#6 CuriousOne

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 11:35 AM

There's magnacraft 15x70 on amazon for even lower price:

http://www.amazon.co...013XDTPQ/ref...

visually, this and celestron look exactly the same, what about the performance?

#7 Photobud

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:20 PM

As I've never looked at nor used the Magnacraft, I can't compare the two but I am VERY happy with the Celestrons.

#8 Binojunky

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:56 PM

My local store has the Celestron Skymaster 15x70 on for $50 Canadian,if and it can be a big if, you get a pair thats well collimated and are prepared to treat them gently they can give a lot of pleasure,DA.

#9 krebs

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 06:18 PM

I too got a pair of the Celestron Skymaster 15x70's (Christmas) and been freezing my behind on the occasional clear nights. They seem to be collimated OK and so far I really like them. As with Photobud, my tripod is way too short for Binoculars but I am looking to build one of those Sky Mirror thingies instead of a big tripod and mount.

#10 KennyJ

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 06:47 PM

A few years ago, when the Celestron Skymaster 15x70s became available here in the UK through the catalogue retailer Argos,the situation provided a work colleague the opportunity to purchase with the optional safeguard of being able to return for a full refund within 28 days if not fully satisfied.

I'm still not sure which was the more worrying aspect, the fact that HE thought each of the three specimens he ended up taking back "seemed OK" to him before passing them on to me for MY opinion, or that all three REALLY WERE so badly out of alignment straight from the box.

One previously contemplated theory of mine which THAT experience blew right out of the water, was that there must be some kind of mystical force at work whereby somehow,for some unfathomable reason, anyone buying a Skymaster as a first ever 15x binocular, always seemed to get one PERFECTLY collimated, whereas anyone who had ever looked through a considerably more expensive 15x model beforehand, NEVER did.

Kenny

#11 ronharper

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 12:06 AM

Just goes to show, looking through binoculars too much is bad for your eyes!

#12 CuriousOne

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 01:10 AM

..and for budget, too :)

#13 nicknacknock

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 04:40 AM

Got one of these lovely binoculars as well and fortunately they are well collimated :)

I paired them with a nice Manfrotto head and tripod. Tripod has an extendible column so I can raise these babies waaaaay up!

Oh so perfect for clusters :)

#14 rydberg

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 08:59 AM

I'll give my take: these Celestron, if anywhere near collimation, are decent enough optically (that is the cheap part) but the mechanical issues (that is where the costs are) doom them. I will confess to a hearth skipping moment:
A few months ago, in the backyard, I dropped my 12x50 Pentax WP II. They did not land well: they ended up hitting the left eyecup on one of the walk "stones" (good old KY limestone about 3'x4')we have there :scared: . The eyecup was now oval but I was able to bend back the metal(yes, METAL) so that now is usable.
Collimation? still fine. Can you imagine doing that on a Celestron 15x70?
My two cents, and worth every penny.
Marco

#15 BillC

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 05:37 PM

“One previously contemplated theory of mine which THAT experience blew right out of the water, was that there must be some kind of mystical force at work whereby somehow, for some unfathomable reason, anyone buying a Skymaster as a first ever 15x binocular, always seemed to get one PERFECTLY collimated, whereas anyone who had ever looked through a considerably more expensive 15x model beforehand, NEVER did. — Kenny”

KennyJ:

And how many times have I pointed that out, only to be followed by someone who swears he’s had his for years and the collimation is “perfect”? There is no doubt that is a possibility. However, what I know to be true makes such claims suspect. Do I believe those people to be lying? ABSOLUTELY NOT! In addition, they have the right to believe and say what they want. Yet, experience makes me wonder on what criteria they base their claims and to what are they comparing it.

Having to return so many from one shipment — and finding similar collimation problems with 20 units from the next — I felt obligated to return the lot. As a retailer, would it be smart business to stop selling such a popular product without good reason? Did I do it because I wanted to be different? Celestron is trying to hit a price point and thousands of consumers a year will never recognize the problem, take the time to return defective products or compare notes as we do here.

Not all, but most of the folks who testify of the good to great binocular they just bought have very low post counts and often admit that the 15x70 is their first foray into the world of binoculars. That, of course, is no indictment. However, I have seen many dozen customers tell me their collimation is “perfect” or “spot on” or the like, only to have the collimator reveal errors in alignment considerably beyond the human capacity to compensate for those errors. I have had customers tell me their SIGHT is better the Fujinon U.B.M.M. Collimaton — usually not knowing what a “collimation machine” is supposed to do. Some have thought binos were supposed to give you that figure 8 seen in movies and on TV. Still others insist on blaming their vision for a double image (“I’ve never been able to use binoculars.) — some not even knowing binoculars need to be aligned.

The object of the game is to gain ENJOYMENT with the instrument you have, and IF the SkyMaster is really close, it can do that, big time! I only pipe up to be a stabilizing voice to take the edge off many of the grand hurrahs from those who lead others to think all binoculars are created equal, and the cheapest MUST be the best buy — notice CuriousOne’s post #5640491. Truly, a sow’s ear does not become a silk purse simply because one doesn’t want to spend the money for a silk purse.

I posted the above message last night and then removed it because I didn’t want to offend anyone. Thinking about it more, I came to the conclusion that straight talk from a quantifiable source may not be as offensive as the words of those who would vaunt the OPINIONS of the novice bino buff over the many experiences of seasoned observers and professional opticians, whose views congeal toward FACTS.

Every opinion expressed on CN is EQUAL IN WORTH TO THE PURPOSE OF CLOUDY NIGHTS. They are not, however, EQUAL IN TECHNICAL ACCURACY. You Choose.

Cheers, :jump:

BillC

#16 Erix

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 06:03 PM

...I only pipe up to be a stabilizing voice to take the edge off many of the grand hurrahs from those who lead others to think all binoculars are created equal, and the cheapest MUST be the best buy — notice CuriousOne’s post #5640491. Truly, a sow’s ear does not become a silk purse simply because one doesn’t want to spend the money for a silk purse.


Just to be clear, CuriousOne's post didn't say the cheapest was the best buy, he asked "visually, this and celestron look exactly the same, what about the performance?"

#17 BillC

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 06:13 PM

Hi Erix:

When I saw your name, I thought "Here I go; in trouble again."

I wasn't pickin' on CuriousOne; I was just referencing his:

"There's magnacraft 15x70 on amazon for even lower price:"

That seems to indicate that price point tells the most import story. As the song went . . . "How LOW can you GO."

Cheers,

BillC

#18 Erix

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 06:25 PM

Me thinks you need a hug. :poke: Anyone willing to give Bill a hug?

Not everyone's budget is the same. I think a good rule of thumb is asking someone what their price range is, what their needs are, and then helping them find the best bang for the buck for that price.

Photobud, congrats on your successful first light. Here's to many more good sessions.

#19 Joad

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 06:32 PM

Jupiter and three moons is definitely not wishful thinking with a 15X70 Porro binocular. My 8X42 roof prism binocular shows Jupiter and three moons (the 4th moon is definitely wishful thinking with the 8X42, though I think that I've seen it at least with averted imagination).

#20 BillC

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:03 PM

Post deleted by BillC

#21 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:20 PM

Not all, but most of the folks who testify of the good to great binocular they just bought have very low post counts



Last year I purchased a pair of Brunton compact binoculars via Craigslist at a very good price. I gave them a cursory evaluation, they seemed to work fine. It was only when I got them home that I realized that the right side did not focus, only the left.

I gave them to a my friend Rick who just loves them, best binoculars he has ever owned. Rick is blind in his right eye..

Jon

#22 Photobud

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:30 PM

Wow, all this commotion when all I did was post how happy I was with my new binocs after an extremely short, cold trip outside. I didn't even make this a review or comparison.
Guess I'll just enjoy my new toy.

#23 wky46

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:38 PM

Enjoy away Photobud! Hope those comets are all what they say they're going to be later this year, as the views of them through your "new toy" ought to be awesome.... Phil

#24 Mike Cook

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:56 PM

I've been using my doomed, conditionally aligned enough for me 15x70 Skymasters for almost 6 years and I'm enjoying them. No, they are not made of Quintessence, but for $50.00 they beat any 560x trash refractor. :)

#25 Joad

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:58 PM

Wow, all this commotion when all I did was post how happy I was with my new binocs after an extremely short, cold trip outside. I didn't even make this a review or comparison.
Guess I'll just enjoy my new toy.


Alas, Photobud, as someone who has served two stints as a Moderator on the Cloudy Nights Binoculars forum (without benefit of combat pay, I might add), I can tell you that there are two subjects that cannot be addressed without peril here:

1. Celestron 15X70 binoculars

and

2. Collimation


So I hope you do not take anything said in this thread personally. If Galileo himself was to report on his fun experience with a Celestron 15X70, there would be turbulence.






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