Celestron Travel Scope 70

Celestron Travel Scope 70 Review: Not for Astronomy

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Summary Review

Celestron Travel Scope 70 is an 80$ telescope that comes with a backpack. This statement only should give you an idea about the quality of the telescope. In short, it is not good at all.

The backpack and the accessories that come with the telescope make up most of the 80$ that you are paying. What is left is a tiny amount of value that can be spent on the optical tube, and as a result, the optics are mostly plastic and low-quality.

This model is only usable for people who need a lightweight scope for terrestrial viewing.

Optics

This is a telescope that should only be bought for terrestrial viewing purposes. Astronomical observations are, unfortunately, a disappointment.

Rings of Saturn are barely distinguishable from the planets with the 20mm eyepiece. You can see the moons of Jupiter and a single cloud stripe on the surface. This again, is possible with the 20mm eyepiece. The 10mm eyepiece provides too much power. 

Venus and Mars will appear as yellow and red dots as they do with most other budget telescopes.

The Moon looks decent with some detail of mountain ranges and craters.

Deep Space performance is not good at all. Only exceptionally bright objects such as the Andromeda Galaxy look decent. Other than that, most objects appear ghostly.

Below-average performance in all areas is worsened with severe chromatic aberration with most objects due to the short optical tube.

Overall the optical performance is an epic fail. This telescope shouldn’t be bought for astronomy in any circumstance. Meade Infinity 70, at the same price, performs much better optically.  

Mount

This is a telescope that should only be bought for terrestrial viewing purposes. Astronomical observations are, unfortunately, a disappointment.

Rings of Saturn are barely distinguishable from the planets with the 20mm eyepiece. You can see the moons of Jupiter and a single cloud stripe on the surface. This again, is possible with the 20mm eyepiece. The 10mm eyepiece provides too much power. 

Venus and Mars will appear as yellow and red dots as they do with most other budget telescopes.

The Moon looks decent with some detail of mountain ranges and craters.

Deep Space performance is not good at all. Only exceptionally bright objects such as the Andromeda Galaxy look decent. Other than that, most objects appear ghostly.

Below-average performance in all areas is worsened with severe chromatic aberration with most objects due to the short optical tube.

Overall the optical performance is an epic fail. This telescope shouldn’t be bought for astronomy in any circumstance. 

Celestron AstroMaster 90EQ Telescope Review Accessories

Accessories

The eyepiece are the best part of the package. They are decent Kellner’s with 10mm and 20mm apertures.

The 5×24 is not usable at all. It is mostly plastic. This telescope doesn’t need a finder anyway due to its short optical tube.

The diagonal is usable for terrestrial viewing. It lowers the image quality quite a bit.

Drawbacks

Most parts of the telescope are plastic. 

Short optical tube results in severe chromatic aberrations.

The primary lens is lower in quality.

The base is highly unstable.

The 5×24 finder is not usable.

Conclusion

As I’ve said before, this is a budget telescope that comes with a backpack. Therefore it has to be light and cheap. You won’t get any performance in astronomy with this telescope. At this price range, Orion FunScope 76 or Meade Infinity 70 are better choices.

If you are buying this telescope for hunting purposes or any other hobby that involves terrestrial viewing, AND you need a backpack to carry the telescope, by all means, get the Celestron Travel Scope 70.

Celestron Travel Scope 70 Cover 2

In-Depth Review and Technical Specifications

There is not much to discuss in this section since this telescope is not made for astronomy. It is made for people who need a portable scope to view the Earth. 

Focuser

Optics

A short refractor is not preferable, particularly with a budget telescope. You can’t solve the chromatic aberration problem with cheap coatings. This is the case with Travel Scope 70.

The 400mm optical tube, combined with the 70mm aperture, creates an f/5.7 focal ratio. For beginners, we recommend f/6-7 refractors so that they have less chromatic aberrations and not too much power for high-magnification viewing. 

f/5.7 focal ratio is too low with any refractor. Adding to that, the primary lens is cheap and single coated. There are green and purple color defects with almost all bright objects, including the Moon. 

The deep-space performance is not good for a few reasons. The 70mm aperture is too low, the plastic dew lowers the image quality, and the low-quality lenses block the light that would otherwise provide a brighter image.

Mount

The mount is so frustrating for stargazing I can’t put it into words. Plastic is everywhere, and the slightest breeze creates annoying movements. 

To be fair to Celestron, they had to make something that would fit in a backpack, and that is easy to carry. But the base drags down the viewing experience so much the sacrifice is not worth it.

Celestron Travel Scope 70 Backpack (1)

Accessories

The 20mm eyepiece is the best part of the whole telescope. It is a decent Kellner that provides 20x magnification. 

The 10mm eyepiece provides too much power. The optical tube becomes too hard to use at 40x. This says a lot about the optical quality.

The 5×24 finder is a dreadful scope. It is more of a toy for kids than a serious accessory. An f/5.7 refractor doesn’t even require a finder. 

The 45-degree diagonal is usable for terrestrial viewing. But in most cases, the telescope is in an uncomfortable, vertical position. 

Drawbacks

The optical design is not preferable, and the lenses are low in quality. 

The base is mostly plastic.

The finder is useless.

I could go on and on, but you get the point. This is not a telescope that provides good value for the price.

Conclusion

As I’ve said before, this model is for people who need a device for viewing the Earth that is extremely portable. Those people don’t care whether there are chromatic aberrations around the Moon or whether Jupiter’s cloud bending are visible. If you are one of those, Celestron Travel Scope 70 is recommended. Otherwise, you should get a decent model for your hard-earned money. 

Meade Infinity 70, Celestron FirstScope, or SkyWatcher Heritage 76 are some of the models that are better devices for stargazing.

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