Celestron Skymaster 12×60 Binoculars Review Are They Worth Buying?

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Celestron has been a revered manufacturer and competitor in the astronomy market since 1960. They produce telescopes, microscopes, and, most importantly, binoculars.

They had only focused on entry-level binoculars until recently, but by using their extensive knowledge in telescopes, they have broken into a higher quality market.

Their SkyMaster 12x60 Binoculars are a popular choice for entry-level astronomers and the like. They come in at an entry-level price point but have high-quality features. They have large 60mm objective lenses and powerful 12x magnification.

If preferred, you can buy a tripod for more comfortable viewing or a smartphone adapter to permanently capture amazing sights. By default, the SkyMaster 12×60 Binoculars come with a carrying case, strap, microfiber cleaning cloth, and covers for the eyepiece and lenses.

Bright Images in Dim Conditions

Multi-coated optics and high index BaK-4 prisms enable powerful light-gathering capabilities. Standard binoculars magnifications fall between 7x and 10x, while these SkyMasters go up to 12x.

BaK-4 prisms stand for Baritleichkron, which is a Barium Crown glass. BaK-4 prisms are superior to other types of optical glass as they produce more exact images. The decision to use BaK-4 prisms in the SkyMaster 12x60s allows less peripheral light to be lost through the internal reflection, decreasing light bleeding around the edges and allowing for a higher contrast image.

An objective lens diameter of 60mm means that it has an exit pupil size of 5mm. The exit pupil size determines the amount of light available to your eye. A 5mm exit pupil is sufficient for daytime and twilight use.

Eyeglass Friendly Design

Anyone who has worn glasses is familiar with the frustration and discomfort of looking through viewfinders, telescopes, and binoculars. All of the binoculars in the SkyMaster series feature folding eyecups, which means that they can be easily manipulated to the user’s preference.

Eye relief refers to the distance between your eyes and the lens. While standard binoculars may have folding eyecups that allow users with eyeglasses to get closer. You still can’t get within the eye relief range required to observe a clear image. A longer eye relief of 17mm on the SkyMaster 12x60s allows you to see the entire image easily without any vignetting or obstruction.

In addition to the low-light capabilities and eyeglass friendly design, Celestron's SkyMaster 12x60 Binoculars have many other features.

Celestron’s SkyMaster 12×60 Binoculars Features

  • Multi-coated optics for sharp, clear views
  • A protective rubber covering for a firm and secure grip
  • A large center focus knob
  • A water-resistant exterior
  • A 5.3° or 278 feet field of view
  • A 59 feet close focus distance
  • A -4 to +8 diopter range

Celestron is devoted to giving a pristine image at an entry-level price, and their SkyMaster specifications reflect this. Multi-coated optics mean that more light can be passed through the lenses, and it reflects less light at the surface; this increases the brightness, contrast, and color reproduction of images.

Another interesting detail about these binoculars is the location of the focus wheel and right eye diopter adjustment. The diopter adjustment is a knob that you can calibrate in order to compensate for the differences between your eyes.

Many standard binoculars only have a diopter range up to +4, but Celestron’s design goes up to +8, allowing for stronger adjustment. Since many individuals have a strength difference between each eye, especially those who wear eyeglasses regularly, this is an important feature.

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A centrically located focus wheel is also an exception to the norm. Instead of a diopter adjustment wheel on each eyepiece, there is only one on the right eye. After adjusting the diopter to the preferred strength, all you have to do is adjust the central focus wheel as you move from object to object.

Many of the features are ideal for astronomy but can be used in other environments as well. The SkyMaster 12×60 model is more than capable of long-range terrestrial viewing in regular lighting conditions. Moreover, the aluminum chassis is both water and fog proof, which is beneficial for anyone exploring a humid area or moving through various elevations with different temperatures.

Sky-High Rating by Other Buyers

We scoured the internet and found lots of different reviews on the Celestron's SkyMaster 12x60 Binoculars ultimately the overall majority was over the moon with these binoculars with only a few people having little niggles.

Some users reported difficulties collimating the binoculars correctly, as they don’t arrive pre-calibrated. Collimating is the process of aligning all components in a telescope or binoculars to bring light into its best focus, which can be difficult for beginners. You can easily collimate the binoculars yourself by following internet guides or by visiting a local hobby shop.

The other most frequently reported downside by reviewers is the weight of the binoculars. They weigh approximately 2.5 pounds, which can be uncomfortable for long periods of viewing, especially for stargazing.

Luckily, this can easily be corrected with the purchase of a tripod or sitting in a reclining chair to reduce the strain on your arms. The recommended tripod produced by Celestron can be found here on Amazon.

Despite the heavy weight and lack of pre-collimation, buyers frequently remarked the sharp image amongst low-light conditions. Some even stated they enjoyed the SkyMaster Binoculars much more than amateur telescopes for observing the moon, planets, and other extraterrestrial sights up-close and in extreme detail.

Are the Celestron Skymaster 12×60 Binoculars a Good Buy?

For beginning astronomers, birdwatcher enthusiasts, and everyone in between, Celestron's Skymaster 12x60 Binoculars are an excellent choice. Many reviewers were thrilled by the high quality provided at such a reasonable price.

It’s difficult for individuals with glasses to find binoculars that aren’t uncomfortable or have a shorter-than-average eye relief distance. The folding eyecups, dynamic diopter adjustment, and long eye relief distance are all ideal for overcoming optical difficulties.

By using their deep-rooted expertise in telescopes, Celestron has produced a series of high-quality binoculars suitable for both stargazing and terrestrial viewing. If you’re interested in all of the features discussed above but are looking for more magnification, the SkyMaster 12x60s are only the beginning of the series, with the highest magnification of them all being 25x.

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