Are you looking for great astronomy equipment at a price that won’t break the bank? Luckily for you, there are several sources of discount new, used, and display-model astronomical gear.
The best place to start your search is on-line.
Oceanside Photo and Telescope Corp., at www.optcorp.com, offers brand name telescopes from Meade, Celestron, Stellarvue, and other well-known makers at discounts of 10-50% off of the manufacturers’ list prices. They also carry all kinds of accessories and goodies such as eyepieces, CCD cameras, mounts, and spotting scopes at similarly deep discounts- check them out for great deals!
Another reliable discount retailer is Pro Telescope.com, at www.protelescope.com, which offers telescopes grouped very handily for the non-expert. For example, you can click on “Best for Beginners,” “Kids Age 6-11,” or “Deep Space Viewing,” depending on the skills, age, and interests of your intended gift recipient. Telescopes and accessories are discounted up to 40% from the list prices. Another handy option is the “Value Bundles”; each one includes a telescope, mount, eyepiece set, star chart, and guide book at 15-20% off the separate purchase price.
Orion Telescopes and Binoculars, at www.telescope.com, offers mainly SkyQuest, SpaceProbe, and StarBlast scopes in a variety of sizes and types, and at very reasonable prices. Reflectors, refractors, Dobsonians, Cassegrains… all are discounted 15-30%. Best of all, Orion offers free technical support and a 30-day money back guarantee, just in case!
If you can’t find what you want on these sites, or just want to do more comparison shopping, the classified ads at the back of science and astronomy magazines can offer great deals from individuals and companies alike. Sky and Telescope Magazine advertises every imaginable type of telescope and gear on-line at http://classifieds.skyandtelescope.com/. Other science magazines, such as Discover and Scientific American, offer general science classifieds at the back of each issue. Usually astronomy equipment is one of the better-represented categories in the ads.
You may also luck out and find local advertisements for astronomy gear in your newspaper’s classifieds, or on the website for a nearby star-gazing club.
If you spend a bit of time searching, you are sure to find some amazing buys on telescopes and other astronomy equipment! Happy shopping!