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How to Choose Binoculars for Astronomy

Gazing at the stars through a pair of binoculars can expand your perception far beyond your naked eye, but it is important to know what features to look for when choosing a pair of binoculars.


  • Step 1: Find the right pair of binoculars for your astronomy needs. Try the binoculars out before you purchase them. Your pair of binoculars will last you a long time, so make sure you are comfortable with them before making your purchase.
  • FACT: The system of valleys on Mars known as Valles Marineris stretch for 2,500 miles east to west on the planet, which is roughly the width of Australia.
  • Step 2: Prevent damage from dew or unexpected rainfall by choosing binoculars that are waterproof or water resistant. With waterproof or water resistant binoculars, you can stargaze without worrying about rain.
  • Step 3: Check to make sure the lens quality of your binoculars is high. The better the lens quality on your binoculars, the sharper the image will be.
  • Step 4: Use binoculars with a front lens that has a large diameter. The second number binoculars are classified by is the size in millimeters of their front lenses. For astronomy, your binoculars should have at least a 50 millimeter front lens.
  • TIP: Get a tripod for binoculars that have a 70 millimeter front lens or larger to keep them steady.
  • Step 5: Magnify the image. Binoculars are classified by numbers, the first of which indicates magnification strength. The magnification refers to how much bigger the image looks than with the naked eye. The best choice for astronomy are binoculars with seven-times or 10-times magnification.

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