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Best budget Spotting Scope?

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Old Saturday 12th January 2019, 19:56   #1
Chilt
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Best budget Spotting Scope?

As the title says, Anyone used or got a budget scope which has turned out to be quite okay?

Thanks

Chilt
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Old Saturday 12th January 2019, 20:23   #2
JerryLogan
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Not sure where budget starts. If you watch closely it’s possible to get a Pentax 65mm for $400 and 80mm for $650. That’s amazing quality for the money.

Best,
Jerry
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Old Sunday 13th January 2019, 19:45   #3
Boogieshrew
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I’m using a Helios Fieldmaster 85mm scope with a 30x sw Swarovski eyepiece. The Swarovski ATS/ATM eyepieces fit the scope without an adaptor and make the scope really very good indeed.
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Old Sunday 13th January 2019, 22:41   #4
karjak
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chilt View Post
As the title says, Anyone used or got a budget scope which has turned out to be quite okay?

Thanks

Chilt
I purchased a Celestron Ultima 80 for $101 usd on Amazon in 2017 that I have been quite happy with. Currently it's $169.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I cuurently moved up to a Regal 100 which costs quite a bit more because of ED glass. Quite frankly the difference in clearness of view is not huge. I think the Ultima is a good value.

I have some YouTube links of Bird vids you might want to view. This is done with a $30 Lightdow action camera attached to the Ultima using digital zoom on camera to lessen vignetting. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PjayXsq3PE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTRMHcL6OR8
Attached also are some pictures from still frames of videos taken this way.
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Last edited by karjak : Sunday 13th January 2019 at 23:11.
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Old Monday 14th January 2019, 08:54   #5
Chilt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karjak View Post
I purchased a Celestron Ultima 80 for $101 usd on Amazon in 2017 that I have been quite happy with. Currently it's $169.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I cuurently moved up to a Regal 100 which costs quite a bit more because of ED glass. Quite frankly the difference in clearness of view is not huge. I think the Ultima is a good value.

I have some YouTube links of Bird vids you might want to view. This is done with a $30 Lightdow action camera attached to the Ultima using digital zoom on camera to lessen vignetting. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PjayXsq3PE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTRMHcL6OR8
Attached also are some pictures from still frames of videos taken this way.
Ive been able to up my budget and Ive been looking at the Ultima 80! Looks like a great budget scope, I shall also take a look at the link you sent me when I get home! Thanks for the input!

Chilt
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Old Monday 14th January 2019, 08:56   #6
Chilt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karjak View Post
I purchased a Celestron Ultima 80 for $101 usd on Amazon in 2017 that I have been quite happy with. Currently it's $169.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I cuurently moved up to a Regal 100 which costs quite a bit more because of ED glass. Quite frankly the difference in clearness of view is not huge. I think the Ultima is a good value.

I have some YouTube links of Bird vids you might want to view. This is done with a $30 Lightdow action camera attached to the Ultima using digital zoom on camera to lessen vignetting. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PjayXsq3PE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTRMHcL6OR8
Attached also are some pictures from still frames of videos taken this way.
Also! Im gunna need a tripod! Ive seen one called the Zomei q666, just wondering if you know of any cheap but alright tripod?

Thanks

Chilt
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Old Monday 14th January 2019, 12:16   #7
cefnlad
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I have one of these :- https://www.rothervalleyoptics.co.uk...ing-scope.html

It's decent enough for my needs. Many budget scopes really close down at the top end of the magnification. One of the advantages of this scope is that you can change the eyepiece (it's a 1.25", push in) which gives some flexibility.
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Old Monday 14th January 2019, 17:57   #8
gr8fuldoug
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Konus, Hawke, Athlon.
Please give us a call, 516-217-1000, to discuss what would be best for you
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Please visit our website @ www.cameralandny.com
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Old Monday 14th January 2019, 20:40   #9
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Konus, not sure about that.

B.
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Old Tuesday 15th January 2019, 13:26   #10
jring
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Hi,

my old Kowa TSN-3 and a modern Opticron SDLv2 EP plus used carbon tripod, head and mulepack was around 800 quid total and still offers great views even when compared to current alphas.

Same goes for other former alphas like Kowa ED or Fluorite scopes (model ending in 3 for angled or 4 for straight - current small bayonet EPs fit), Nikon Fieldscope ED (EPs are getting a bit rare, try to get a package with the EP of your choice or be prepared to shop around a bit), Pentax PF65ED OR 80ED (great choice of astro 1.25" EPs), Leica APO Televid 62 or 77, Swaro AT80HD or ATS/ATM 80...

As usual, used optics should be bought in person or from a reputable online store with a no questions asked return policy...

Joachim
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Old Tuesday 15th January 2019, 14:14   #11
PYRTLE
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Budget for scope and tripod is between 150 - 200. Pretty basic stuff for new units, get more if you can find a second hand deal. Try some well known independent UK optics specialists such as CleySpy, South West Optics, Ace Optics or InFocus.
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Old Tuesday 15th January 2019, 14:15   #12
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https://www.cleyspy.co.uk/opticron-hr66-ref-74459.html As an example.
Couple that with say a Velbon 450 tripod with 3 way pan and tilt head incl. handle you've got a good little set up. Also Benro. tripods are popular.
Total, under 200.

P

Last edited by PYRTLE : Tuesday 15th January 2019 at 14:21.
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Old Tuesday 15th January 2019, 15:03   #13
Chilt
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Thanks for all the great response and help people have given so far! So I think I’ve decided to go for the Celestron ultima80 and good things have been said about it and I really like the look of it! It’s just finding a tripod now! I’ve seen a zomei q666 tripod with a ball head at a decent price of 53 looks like a solid tripod to start with but not 100% like

Thanks

Chilt
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Old Tuesday 15th January 2019, 17:13   #14
jring
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Hi,

you will not like the tripod - it is quite unsuitable for a full size scope. First of all, it has 5 leg sections which means 4 joints (which decrease stability) and very thin lower leg sections (which also decrease stability). Its maximum height is 153 cm (including head) which means you will have to extend the column all the way (again not good for stability) and it might be still fairly low with the eyepiece roughly 10cm higher... depends on your height of course...

Also a ballhead is not very usable for birding except for maybe a light 50mm scope.

I would look at sth like this on a budget:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Velbon-Vide...lbon+Videomate

or even better:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Velbon-DV-7...elbon+DV-7000N

They have only 3 leg sections, a greater max height (so you can leave the column down or mostly so) and a usable fluid head.

Joachim

Last edited by jring : Tuesday 15th January 2019 at 17:26. Reason: added 2nd link
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Old Wednesday 16th January 2019, 11:06   #15
Chilt
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Okay! So after some hard research and very helpful people, I think I’m going with the

Celestron Ultima80 with a velbon Sherpa 200R, then if I enjoy it that much I may upgrade the head to a fluid one!

Thanks for everyone help

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