Barlow Lens: What, How To and The Best

First I will explain the benefits and uses of the Barlow Lens. Later in the article, I will provide a list of best Barlow lenses based on price points. Note that there are other devices called focal extenders that provide a similar function but their optics are somewhat different. However, from a practical point of … Read more

SkyWatcher FlexTube 200P (8″ Collapsible) Review

The Optical (Flex)Tube Assembly The SkyWatcher FlexTube 200P or Sky-Watcher’s 8″ Collapsible Dobsonian is an 8” f/6 Newtonian (203mm Aperture, 1200mm Focal Length), with the same optics as those found in Orion, Apertura, Zhumell, SkyWatcher classic, and GSO dobsonians. The main difference between this telescope and others of its size is the collapsible “FlexTube” functionality. … Read more

Goldline Eyepieces – The Definitive Guide

Often in our reviews and buyer’s guides, as well as scattered in literature throughout the internet on Reddit, Instagram, and Cloudy Nights, recommendations abound for the “gold-line” eyepieces or their numerous rebrands, as well as the newer “red-line” eyepieces. However, very little is devoted to actually reviewing these eyepieces in a quantitative manner. In this … Read more

Celestron 127EQ PowerSeeker Review (Don’t Buy!)

Celestron’s PowerSeeker 127EQ is the perfect example of why our website exists, and why some Amazon reviewers are not knowledgeable enough to review complicated telescopes. The PowerSeeker 127EQ is possibly the worst telescope I’ve seen amateurs recommend frequently, probably because they see its specs and think it’s a great deal. But specs aren’t everything, and … Read more

Celestron’s PowerSeeker 50AZ Reviewed (Unbiased)

Celestron’s PowerSeeker 50AZ is possibly one of the most deplorable telescopes the company offers in its current lineup. Most experienced astronomers would tell you to stay away from Celestron’s PowerSeeker series, and in this case, with the 50AZ they are once again correct. The PowerSeeker 50AZ is little more than a cheap toy designed to … Read more

Meade Lightbridge Mini (82, 114, 130) Reviewed

Meade’s Lightbridge Minis are some of the best beginner telescopes available for under $200. Unlike many cheap instruments which include complicated and wobbly equatorial mounts, poor optics, unusable finderscopes and plastic eyepieces, the Lightbridge Mini telescopes all come with easy-to-use and stable tabletop Dobsonian mounts, decent red dot finders, and good MA eyepieces with glass … Read more

Meade Infinity 90AZ Review

Meade’s Infinity 90AZ is my favorite of the three larger Infinity AZ scopes. It has enough aperture to show you a fair amount of things, but its slightly longer focal ratio makes for lower chromatic aberration and thus better planetary performance. It seems to be the least-purchased of the “big” three Infinity refractors, a pity … Read more

Orion SkyQuest XT4.5 Telescope Review

Orion’s SkyQuest XT4.5 is the smallest of their XT-series Dobsonians. While arguably my least-favorite scope in the XT line, the XT4.5 has a number of features that make it appealing, particularly to children. Unlike most other tabletop scopes the XT4.5 is tall/long enough that it doesn’t necessarily need a table, per se. Small children can … Read more

Orion 7” Maksutov-Cassegrain Telescope Review

The Orion 7” Maksuov-Cassegrain is a telescope manufactured and sold by Orion telescopes in the USA. It is not very commonly known amongst dedicated astronomers, but it may be interesting for a few looking for a specific purpose telescope. It is based on the unusual Maksutov-Cassegrain telescope design typically only seen in smaller telescopes due … Read more