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Binocular Astronomy 2nd Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0943396880
ISBN-10: 0943396883
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 190 pages
  • Publisher: Willmann-Bell; 2 edition (June 30, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0943396883
  • ISBN-13: 978-0943396880
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 8.5 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,585,849 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I'm not a huge fan of binocular astronomy, but I bought this to learn more about it. I'm still not a huge fan of binocular astronomy--but this book has added very considerably to my telescope-based observing. The reason is that many of the targets discussed (beautifully) in this book are tough for binoculars esp. in suburban skies such as mine, but are easy and extremely rewarding through a small telescope (e.g. my 5 inch reflector). Yet these very rewarding objects are largely omitted from telescope gudebooks (perhaps since they're too easy!). Thus, this book provides a huge collection of great targets for a small scope. And it is far more than a mere list (though convenient lists are provided). The astronomical and astrophysical context of the objects described is provided very nicely--but learning this is optional, so the user of this book can create the desired balance between "theory" and pretty observations. There are only a few things I don't like about the book--no index (but the organizatin and table of contents are excellent, so essentially make up for this), no discussion of the moon, which is a great binocular object, and nothing about sketching your observations. Nevertheless it is a tour de force, filled with great information, organized well, and with very high production quality. I would strongly recommend this to all amateurs with telescopes (and maybe binoculars,too!).
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Format: Hardcover
If you're serious about binocular astronomy you'll want to get this book and probably Harrington's Touring the Universe Through Binoculars too (see my review of that book too). You may want to consider buying this book directly from Willman-Bell, since Amazon claims a 4-6 week wait time. Binocular Astronomy gives a good narrative account of the best binocular sights in the sky, well illustrated with beautiful black and white photos and excellent sky maps. In fact, the book contains the entire Tirion Bright Star Atlas, which sells for around $11 itself. One can easily photocopy that (oops, I hope that's not a copyright violation) and take it with him/her observing. Coupling these objects' descriptions with a sky map just makes it easier to find them.
Binocular Astronomy excels in its organization of the constellations by seasons (as opposed to alphabetically), choosing to discuss a limited number of objects (but discussing them thoroughly), including key statistics (magnitude, stellar type, distance, etc.) without overdoing it. The book is also hardbound and printed on thick durable paper, another plus.
Owning Binocular Astronomy is like having an experienced buddy, helping point you towards all the interesting things in our sky.
All in all, an incredible value.
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By A Customer on January 7, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This high quality and well written book will certainly join Burnhams three volume set as a long term classic, for those wanting to explore the sky with binocs. The numerous drawings and charts are priceless in locating interesting objects. It's a pity this excellent book is listed as "buy it used" by Amazon, with none shown as available used, since mine arrived spanking new in three days from Richmond to Maine via UPS in a highly professionally wrapped box for only a... handling fee and zero shipping charges from Willman-Bell the publisher. The inclusion of the outstanding Tirion Star Atlas is a huge plus, highly useful with only the naked eye, as well as with binocs and small telescopes. A Best Buy for anyones library. When you or the children in the family are ready to go beyond Rey's priceless "The Stars-A New Way to See Them", this book should come next.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is INCREDIBLE. It covers many deep sky objects for binoculars and also increases your understanding of our galaxy. The writer does not only explain deep sky objects for binoculars by season but also explains why some kinds of objects are very dense at some constellations and rare at some other part of sky. Also this book explains what actually happens in the objects that we look. Also this book includes Bright Star Atlas. So you don't need any other atlas to follow the book. This book is for both beginners and intermediate level observers.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This 2nd edition was edited and published without the consent of the original author (Crossen), because of a dispute with the publisher over an unrelated work published elsewhere. According to Crossen, the updates were sloppy added with other parts altered, in any case done without the author's consent.

If you plan to buy this book, get the original first edition.
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Format: Hardcover
Wow, this one has all the information you want or need for binocular observation, and maybe more. If you enjoy astronomy and want one book for binocular astronomy, get this one. It will keep you busy with your binoculars for a long time.

The first chapter introduces the basics of star-watching: constellations, the celestial sphere, seasonal changes, and so on. It also includes a short discussion about choosing and using binoculars. The technical information is a little dated (the optics world has changed in the past 15 years!), but the rest is good solid information.

The next four chapters cover the sky by season. They each introduce the seasonal constellations, and the move straight to the good stuff. And what good stuff it is. Terrificly detailed descriptions of hundreds and hundreds of targets for you to look at, with drawings, charts, and photographs to help you find and identify them.

But be forewarned, this book is by and for amateur astronomers. If your interest in the night sky is very casual, a "twice-a-summer" affair, this book may overwhelm you. For example, it uses the Bayer and Flamsteed IDs for stars (Greek letters and numbers, respectively), and gives directions using degree measurements. You will need and use the star atlas at the rear of the book. Most of this can be quickly learned, but it does demand that you pay attention. This is a good thing. :-)

Chapter 6 describes and illustrates the structure of our own galaxy. It's interesting and very instructive.

Chapter 7 sends you out looking for galaxies. Galaxies, my friends, and with binoculars no less! But with a decent pair of household 10x50 binoculars and a dark sky, you'll be amazed at how the universe unfolds before you.
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