Geared towards beginner astronomers, the Bushnell Voyager Telescope line is a disappointment in quality and usability. Read the full review for more.
There are definitely things to appreciate about the Bushnell Voyager Telescope line, but not as many as you’d hope, unfortunately. Billed as a starter telescope for amateur astronomers, the lack of true sophistication isn’t much of a surprise, but the difficulty in usability and the inadequacy of performance certainly is.
Bushnell is the manufacturer of some of the best optics in the industry–their binoculars are true first-rate devices–but they’ve proven here that even kings make mistakes.
It’s not all bad with the Voyager, though. Some people may find this telescope to fill their needs quite nicely, but overall, it leaves much to be desired.
Bushnell Voyager Series Telescope Review
The folks at Bushnell put their heads together and came up with some really interesting ideas for a new telescope. They tried to combine a selection of concepts into one product, the Voyager, in order to create the ultimate amateur star-gazing experience. Unfortunately, while the innovative tricks themselves were intriguing, the sum turned out to be less than the parts.
The Bushnell Voyager telescope is available in a variety of models. The four most popular are:
- Voyager Sky Tour 60mm Telescope
- Voyager Sky Tour 70mm Telescope
- Voyager Sky Tour 700mm x 3′ Telescope
- Voyager Sky Tour 900mm x 4.5′ Telescope
These were each crafted to be big heavy-duty scopes, capable of providing a professional-level experience for novice astronomers. And while there are certainly decent features, their drawbacks outweigh them heavily.
First, the good news:
Though Bushnell’s scopes have never been as expensive as other brands like Meade, the Voyager series was introduced at even lower prices than normal. For right around $100, you can own a Bushnell Voyager, and that’s a pretty good deal considering the size and specs of the devices.
Also unlike Meade telescopes, the Voyager series is relatively portable. While many high-end scopes weigh in between 50-80 pounds, forcing you to have a star-gazing partner to help with set-up, the Voyager scope can be adjusted and mounted by yourself.
One of the interesting features of the Voyager series is the smart scope technology, which allows you to spot celestial bodies by following a red dot that appears on the viewfinder. Though this is somewhat marred by the darkness of the image, letting you see just the brightest stars in the sky.
Now, the bad news:
Even though it’s supposed to be geared towards amateur gazers, operating the Voyager is incredibly difficult to master. The documentation included with the product is barely decipherable and if you haven’t used telescope equipment before, you may never be able to get it to work right.
Also, the Sky Tour technology, which is meant to provide an audio guide for your star-gazing experience, is just about impossible to get working right. It may help you identify a planet, if you were able to operate it by accident, but fully understanding the feature is highly unlikely.
The biggest drawback, however, is the scope’s general construction. This thing breaks, and breaks easily. The knobs break, the tripods malfunction, and the mini-scopes break down, seemingly without provocation.
Usually, the good news tends to outweigh the bad with Bushnell products, but the scales remain tipped toward the negative after a thorough examination.
Bushnell Voyager Telescope: Customer Reviews
Still haven’t made up your mind about the Bushnell Voyager? Hear what actual consumers have had to say about their experiences with the scope–maybe that will sway you one way or the other.
||Consumer don’t like:
Bushnell Voyager Series Telescope: Summary
The Bottom Line — This isn’t a great lineup of telescopes. Even though Bushnell is a master in the optics game, they’ve turned out some pretty sad devices here. If you’re on a budget and looking for a basic starter scope, these just might be all right, but if you have any experience in astronomy at all, these really aren’t worth your time or money.
Head back Home to AllBestBinoculars.com