Most helpful critical review
62 of 66 people found the following review helpful
on April 5, 2005
I gave it only 3 stars because the focus is just a marketing gimmick that creates a cheap focusing mechanism. A decent traditional wheel for focusing is superior. You can't easily get a good focus, pressing your eyes against the eyepiece can force them out of focus, and it's easy to bump the rocker bar. At 16x power, you have to carefully adjust focus and a rocker bar is an awful design. You have to use both hands to focus: you can press down on one side of the rocker bar, but not up, so to go in and out of focus to get good sharpness, you have to press down with one hand's finger and then press down with the other hand's finger. The rocker bar is terrible idea, especially for 16x! To make matter's worse, there is a fair amount of play in the rocker bar. The rocker bar seems to be the limiting factor on short distances. 40 feet seemed to be the shortest distance they would focus. Stars come into focus well before the limit of the long-distance focus is reached, possibly indicating questionable workmanship, or maybe it makes it better for those who are really-bad near-sighted.
The moons of jupiter were clear and sharp even under city lights. Since it was the brightest "star" in the sky I thuoght i was looking at venus, but when i saw the 3 sharp dots surrounding the round disk, i knew it had to be jupiter. You have to rest them on a chair to see the moons.
The price here at Amazon (with free shipping) is $20 less than my local Walmart after our 10% taxes.
16x requires a fence or car or window to provide the stability needed to make full use of 16x. Even without a prop, it's good, but if your not going to use a prop, 12x50 is better because the amount of light is greater and the field of view is larger.