I decided to go with the Orion 10×50 Binocular Stargazing Kit.
I liked this product for a couple of reason. First, it was the recommended size of binocular. Second, it came with a software program which was nice because I wanted to research astronomy software also. Lastly it had a small red flashlight and a planisphere.
When my package arrived, one of the lens on the binocular wasn’t screwed in all the ways. Orion handled the exchange with great customer service. The replacement binocular worked great. I read through the one-page manual and got them all setup for my eyesight. I did some terrestrial viewing and the results were excellent. I still haven’t looked up at the stars yet.
Overall, I would recommend this product as a great introduction to astronomy.
In my research into the Orion binoculars, I watched some videos on astrophotography. I was aware of the options for SLR adapters and CCD cameras. But what I wasn’t aware of was the concept of afocal photography. This is the process of pointing a camera through the eyepiece. Orion had options for point-and-shot, SLR and iPhone cameras. I went with the point-and-shot option since I had a Canon camera. I selected the Orion SteadyPix Deluxe Camera Mount.
The Celestron FirstScope worked great for the kids. But, one problem they had right away was pointing the telescope at something to look at. It was tough to align for them. I remember there was an accessory kit for the FirstScope. The kit included an finderscope which would help with the alignment. It also included a 12.5mm and 6mm eyepiece. Finally, it included a moon filter and software CD.
I was starting to get re-acquainted with my Meade ETX90. I have had it for some many years but just haven’t made the time to take it outside. At first, I was just pointing it out an open house window to look at the Moon or Jupiter. But, got to start some place.
But, I quickly found out that my two young children wanted to look through it also. I definitely wanted to encourage this but also was a little concern that they might break or stratch something. So, I started looking for an option for them.
I found the Celeston FirstScope telescope. I really liked it because the price was very reasonable and everything was included in the package. The reflector telescope included a small stand and two eyepieces: a 20mm and a 4mm. The telescope has a 76mm aperture which compares similarly to the ETX90 at 90mm. Looks like a good telescope for young kids.