All the scopes here seem to have pretty small apertures, which essentially makes them all toys. The exception is the Explore AR102, which can be found for $100 cheaper on Amazon.
[MOD: Ours includes the tripod]
It appears to me that the $499 price doesn’t include the tripod mount. The Amazon price with tripod is actually $100 more.
If Im reading it right, its $40 cheaper with no tax (for me) on BH.
That’s the one I was seeing. I don’t see it on amazon anymore, but B&H still has it for that price on their own website.
Also, if you look at the $499 listing without the mount, you can get it from Explore Scientific for $399 and free shipping, leaving you $200 to buy a mount separately. You might even be able to get a cheap equatorial mount with that.
I know they have the same part number, but different shipping weights. Are you sure they’re the same “in the box”?
Our Explore AR102 includes a tripod. The others that have been linked do not.
The one from bh did, but it’s shipping weight was 12 lbs, just wondering if it was missing something else.
A 10" Dobsonian can be had for the price of the AR102 and would be a much, much better choice.
you can get buy a 20" mirror blank and grind it yourself, and then build the whole mount for that price.
I’d recommend a large aperture reflector over this for almost all people. I do have a friend that moves quite often. He wanted something that travels well, meaning smaller and doesn’t require frequent collimation. The AR102, wouldn’t be a bad choice for him, but that’s such a specific case. I think the vast majority of people are better off buying a big dobsonian.
The Aurora reflector sold here doesn’t look that bad. $100 with plossol eyepieces and an equatorial mount? 114mm just seems to be on the small side, and there’s no indication if the mirror is parabolic or spherical. It might be a decent deal (if it’s a parabolic mirror) for a small travel scope, for those times you don’t want to set up a 10" dob.
It’s also interesting to see that the 80mm scope is sold out. I’m wondering if people just bought it for the motorized mount.
Ours includes the tripod.