dealscelestron astromaster 114 eq reflector telescope…

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Promo code: look
for additional $10 off.

Get the model with the motor, which ends up being about $10 cheaper than buying the motor separately.

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prepare for facepalm when some people will say to you "oh yea i also like astrology"

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While this may be an excellent deal, beginners should NEVER buy a telescope first.
Grab a binocular and go outside.
You'll thank me in the end.

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@maldito: I was really excited to buy one but now I feel like I'd be an idiot to make the purchase.

Why is a binocular so much better? Why will I thank you?

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I'm not the person who wrote that comment, but perhaps I can help explain in case he doesn't return.
Binoculars are good for a beginning astronomer since they have several advantages...They have low magnification and a wide field of view, which allows you to see many more stars than the naked eye, without having to set-up or orient a telescope with its motor drive. The wide field of binoculars easily shows interesting and attractive sights such as the Pleiades, Orion's belt of stars and nebulae, the 4 brightest moons of Jupiter, attractive pairs of stars which seem to be very close to each other, and of course some craters and shadows on the Moon.

A telescope, on the other hand, has high magnification with a very narrow field of view. While you could easily see the entire surface of the moon using binoculars, a telescope would show you a much smaller area in greater magnification.

Which is preferable is up to you, but using binoculars to begin is a pleasant way to start.

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To continue my comment, there are a few disadvantages to binoculars. A good pair tends to be expensive, and the blurry or off color image of a cheap pair may be poor enough to put you off the hobby. They can get heavy if you pick a pair with decent power, and you might end up buying a stand or tripod to support them. The low magnification limits what you can do to some extent, and a telescope has more power and therefore more ability to search out sights that are invisible in binoculars.

Buying and using a telescope takes some research, reading and perhaps experience to get the most out of it. Binoculars are more of a 'point and shoot' experience which is easier to handle, but somewhat limited in the long run. If you think that you'd be interested in astronomy as a long term hobby rather than just a few quick hours of looking at the sky, then a telescope would be a better investment. The advice to start with binocs is intended to help you avoid the learning curve and frustration

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Another advantage of binoculars - you use both eyes - much more comfortable for the beginner.

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Got this exact same model off of Woot (via Hayneedle) a year ago for $99. Pretty impressive looking piece and is a lot of fun to look at the moon with. Otherwise, its pretty difficult to find the smaller planets and stars and zero in on them. If you have the patience to fiddle with the controls you could have a lot of fun with it.

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Hobby Killer!!!! Join a local Astronomy Group, then decide on a telescope. Get a pair of Binoculars and learn the night sky first.

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This is a fantastic beginner telescope - great for moon and planet viewing. And in these winter months, the Orion Nebula is so easy to find and very easy to see in this telescope.

The motor drive option will allow you to track objects, so you dont have to continue to move the telescopes with the manual controls. This makes viewing so much more enjoyable. Once you have located your object for viewing, the motor drive keeps it there for you.

This is a great starter telescope.

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ok.... so what's a good deal on a high power binocular? :)

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The idea with binoculars is to learn your way around the night sky. I didn't have the patients to look at charts and then find it in the sky. With the gps Celestron SkyScout ($150), I point it at a star and it tells me the name, audio description, and text description including the constellation it's in. Most of the star names are in Arabic so the audio pronunciation is nice. This gadget made all the difference in the world to me. Before I'd be bored after an hour. Now I lay out in a cheap $10 life boat for hours, identifying and watch the planets and stars move. I finally get what others find so cool... now I'm ready for binoculars.

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Didn't know redneck was a constellation. Couldn't it just have been a welfare recipients as well? where's their constellation?

really stupid tag line there Woot. Get another writer.

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Astronomy is a hobby that tends to attract the socially inept... people who also like to quote the hobby's most prolific authors. Having spent a large number of hours looking at the nighttime sky myself, my recommendation is to skip buying a telescope or binoculars altogether. Join your local astronomy club and you will have access to instruments far better than this one and will meet a lot of people willing to let you look through their $5,000 telescopes. The daily deal you are looking at will be gathering dust in your garage after you look at the moon a couple times.

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Found it for less!

You can get this for $125 with free shipping at TheFoundary.com, which is owned by the same company as Telescopes.com, a Hayneedle company.

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@cowboydann: I won't reiterate what anyone4tennis said, but he's right.
One other thing worth mentioning is grabbing a binocular and going outside is much easier (and faster) than setting up a telescope each and every time you want to use it. Frustration may eventually set in when starting out with a telescope.
Imagine setting up a telescope each time you want to look at the moon (or jupiter!) when you can simply run into your house and grab your binocular to have a 'quick stargazing session'.

IMO, any beginner telescope with a motor drive really takes the learning experience out of astronomy.
Learn HOW to find a constellation (declination, azimuth, ascencion, etc etc..) then buy the motor drive.

Here's a link to a great celestron binocular that I recently ordered:

http://deals.woot.com/deals/details/c3990875-f5cf-4559-ab5e-8f5b85c20008/celestron-skymaster-giant-15x70-binoculars-with-tripod-adapter#0

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@maldito: Thanks for the link. I am going to buy a pair. I am glad i read everyone's input before i bought a telescope. Granted i still will someday buy a telescope the binoculars make sense.