Most people who are new in astronomy almost always rush to acquire the first telescope they will see in a store and no one can really blame them for this. Much of the time, they want to have a first hand experience of the wonderful pictures of magnificent celestial objects they have seen in books, TV documentaries and magazines; these normally have a wow effect on most of us. The unfortunate thing is that in most cases, they set up the telescope in their backyard and after taking a single look into the night sky, the magic isn’t there and the anticipated fun ends up to be a frustration.
The easier alternative for this people is to invest their money in an astronomy binocular. This has the advantage of being relatively affordable, easy to use and of course it is very portable. Apart from the fact that the magnification of the binoculars is fixed, the rest of the details can work fine for anyone interested in observing celestial objects. You will be pleased to know that there are zoom models that have variable magnification even though you will be much better with the models that come with fixed power limitations.
For anyone interested in simple astronomy, the binoculars that magnify between 8 and 8 times are simply ideal for scanning the Milky Way, locating different planets, observing bright comets and studying different star clusters such as the Hyades and Pleiades. Most people are amazed to realize the amount of joy and fun that is associated with watching something as commonplace as the moon. Apart from heavenly objects, astronomy binoculars are also perfect for viewing distant mountains and valleys, craters and other physical features because it helps you discover some extremely beautiful features. The good news is that it takes only a few minutes to master the most prominent features and you start enjoying yourself.
If you want to understand how your binoculars work, you only need to refresh your mind on how a telescope works. The truth of the matter is that the working of a binocular is exactly the same as that of a telescope because; the binocular is actually two identical telescopes that are joined together mechanically. At the front of each of those telescopes is a lens that is known as an objective. The role of this lens is to collect light from the object you are looking at before brining it to focus at the eyepiece. This is where the light is formed to create a visible image before it is magnified so that it takes up a big portion of your retina. The magnification of the binocular is normally determined by the focal length of each eyepiece but when it comes to binoculars, the normal range is usually between 5 xs and 10 xs.
Images produced by telescopes are normally upside down and they are also backwards; this is normally not a big deal when it comes to astronomy and it will not cause any inconvenience. The reason for this is that in space there is nothing like left or right, up or down. However, when using astronomy binoculars, you should know that they are fitted with corrective elements called prisms that are fixed between the eyepiece and objective lens, this is why you can comfortably use them for other purposes where right side up pictures are a must.