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Old Friday 5th August 2005, 20:34   #1
dave1956
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Spotting Scope Review - Celestron Ultima 80 ED vs Swarovski 80 HD

The Celestron model is made in China. It arrived in 2004 and is billed in some web reviews as comparable to the highly rated Swarovski 80 HD scope at about 25% of the price.

So I ordered one. I had to wait a few weeks as the model is sold out, backordered on almost every web site I visited. The 2 sites that had them in stock were asking about a $100 premium. I purchased at $466 which included S&H.

After it arrived, I took it down to a local outfitters where they have a dozen spotting scopes set up near a large window, including a Swarovski 80 HD.

The salesman allowed me to install my scope on the tripod next to the Swarovski 80 HD and do a side-by-side comparison, looking at various objects at various distances. Both scopes were equipped with 20-60 zoom lenses.

To my eye, the Swarovski performed slightly better at the extreme zoom (60) and distance. At most settings I felt the Celestron ED was very comparable in image clarity and color. The Celestron produced very sharp, clear, colorful images and after the side-by-side I remained satisfied with my purchase.

The salesman checked out my scope and told me he plans to add the Celestron 80 ED model to his lineup of scopes.
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Old Friday 5th August 2005, 20:45   #2
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Hi!

Thanks for that. I have been wondering how the Celestron ED stacks up against the higher-end competition.

Michael.
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Old Saturday 6th August 2005, 00:57   #3
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Smile Thanks

I am just getting back into birding after more than 20 years. I have never used a scope and had the feeling a few weeks ago that I never would since the 'only' sensible choices where way too expensive - Swaro, Zeiss, Kowa & Leica.

The more I read about people having success with 'lesser' scopes - Pentax, Celestron, Opticron (dont know much about this scope) - the more I think I need to take my time and read as many reviews and personal experiences as possible.

Would be very interested to read more views on the Celestron.
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Old Saturday 6th August 2005, 12:25   #4
salty
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interesting review.

this sounds like a fantastic scope for beginners or the experts, just shows you that you dont have to spend a fortune to get a great performing optic.

although i still expect people to pay double or more for optics even though the difference is marginal........that will always be the case.
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Old Sunday 7th August 2005, 00:48   #5
raymondjohn
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Dear Dave1956

Made a comparison between celstron 80 and zeiss 65 in an astro shop about a week ago. The shop assistant was genuinely surprised by the smaller scope ( they didn't sell zeiss). I was surprised by the performance of the celestron.

I believe you get what you pay for but whether the the more expensive scopes are worth the extra dollars is up to your pocket,needs and how much weight your willing to carry in the field. ENJOY!

bestwishes

raymondjohn
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Old Monday 29th August 2005, 02:14   #6
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I wonder how the cheaper scope will compare after 5+ years of heavy-duty use? (My Nikon Fieldscope-3ED is still as good as the day I bought it.)

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Old Monday 29th August 2005, 03:45   #7
Bill Atwood
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rb_stern
I wonder how the cheaper scope will compare after 5+ years of heavy-duty use? (My Nikon Fieldscope-3ED is still as good as the day I bought it.)
Good question, but on the other hand you can buy 3-4 Celestrons for the price of the premium scopes.

Hope to see a Celestron in the future, would be nice to have a pretty decent beginner scope that I can refer newbies to.
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Old Friday 28th April 2006, 01:39   #8
Marc lefebvre
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celestron 80 not ed

Quote:
Originally Posted by birdeast
I am just getting back into birding after more than 20 years. I have never used a scope and had the feeling a few weeks ago that I never would since the 'only' sensible choices where way too expensive - Swaro, Zeiss, Kowa & Leica.

The more I read about people having success with 'lesser' scopes - Pentax, Celestron, Opticron (dont know much about this scope) - the more I think I need to take my time and read as many reviews and personal experiences as possible.

Would be very interested to read more views on the Celestron.
Hi i just buy a celestron 80mm ultima (not ED), standart one.Before buying i have compared side by side the ultima , ziess diascope 85mm, kowa 82mm,and pentax 80mm ed . I found the celestron very very competitve at low magnification (at 50 to 60 the light decrease too much and everything folows it), BUT at a 45 and less ,wow , if you dont want to do top noch digiscoping , and dont have thousands dollars , dont miss it , at this price you cant be wrong,you cant loose more then the hole price of it,but with a swaro or ziess or leica, you will have more then the entire price of the celestron in depeciation in the next week!!!
Marc.
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Old Tuesday 10th August 2010, 14:09   #9
Wildbobcat89
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Thumbs up Celestron Ultima 80 Angled Scope

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc lefebvre View Post
Hi i just buy a celestron 80mm ultima (not ED), standart one.Before buying i have compared side by side the ultima , ziess diascope 85mm, kowa 82mm,and pentax 80mm ed . I found the celestron very very competitve at low magnification (at 50 to 60 the light decrease too much and everything folows it), BUT at a 45 and less ,wow , if you dont want to do top noch digiscoping , and dont have thousands dollars , dont miss it , at this price you cant be wrong,you cant loose more then the hole price of it,but with a swaro or ziess or leica, you will have more then the entire price of the celestron in depeciation in the next week!!!
Marc.
Hi Marc

I've just purchased the Celestron Ultima 80 Angled (not ED). Are you still happy with it's performance? do you have any images taken through it?

Regards

Rob
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