Celestron Astromaster 76 EQ Review

Celestron Astromaster 76 EQ Review
  • 80%
    Performance - 80%
  • 88%
    Ease of Use - 88%
  • 90%
    Value for Money - 90%


The low price of the Astromaster 76 EQ makes it an easy purchase decision for beginners who don’t want to spend a lot of money on an expensive telescope they might not make full use of.

The Celestron Astromaster 76 EQ is one of the best starter telescopes for the money. The 76mm (3”) aperture is on the lower side, but it’s perfect for lunar and planetary observations.

The equatorial mount, hard to find in a beginner telescope, makes it easy to track objects with the help of the attached red dot finderscope.

If you are just starting out in amateur astronomy, the Astromaster 76 EQ is a great (and pocket-friendly) choice. It also makes for a great gift for your astronomy-loving loved one or child. Read on learn more in my full review.

Celestron Astromaster 76 EQ review

Celestron Astromaster 76 EQ review

What are you buying?

1. 76mm Reflector Telescope

I’m going to be honest here; 76mm is not a lot of aperture. It’s a step up from basic 70mm telescope, but check your expectations in terms of what you can observe.

If you are hoping to see deep space objects like stars, cluster and galaxies in detail, invest in a telescope with a bigger aperture.

Where the Astromaster 76 EQ excels is in planetary and lunar observations. You’ll be able to see the moon and, with the right eyepiece, even observe craters on the moon’s surface.

You’ll also be able to observe Saturn and its rings and see Jupiter. For most beginners, that’s enough to get them excited about the night sky.

Kids will also love views of nearby objects. So if you are looking for a decent and affordable telescope for your kiddo, the Astromaster 76 EQ is perfect.

2. German Equatorial Mount

One of the features that makes the Astromaster 76 EQ a good value for money is the German equatorial mount.

Most low priced telescopes have an Alt-Az mount. It’s good but you may have some difficult tracking objects across the night sky.

The equatorial mount on the Astromaster 76 EQ gives you more flexibility, allowing you to maintain focus as the earth rotates and objects drift in the sky.

3. Steel Tripod

The equatorial mount sits on a stainless steel tripod to ensure it stays sturdy when you operate the mount.

You can adjust the tripod anywhere between 32” and 51” depending on your height and preferred viewing position.

4. Sky and Terrestrial Viewing Telescope

You don’t have to put away the Astromaster 76 EQ when the sun comes up; it’s also great for terrestrial viewing.

The 20mm eyepiece has a built-in erecting prism that flips inverted images so you can view land objects the right way up.

How easy is it to use?

A telescope with a computerized (GoTo) mount is easier to operate for beginners, but don’t be scared by the manual equatorial mount on the Astromaster 76 EQ.

Celestron has made it as easy as possible for beginners to get started.

A red dot finderscope attached to the telescope allows you to easily find and track object.

The equatorial mount also comes with setting circles that allow you to find objects using their coordinates. If you have a sky chart, you can move the telescope to the right spot in the sky.

Don’t worry if you don’t have a star chart or have no idea where to get one. Celestron gives you “The Sky” Level 1 software along with the Astromaster 76 EQ telescope.

The software has a database of over 10,000 objects plus sky maps and images.

You’ll need some practice working the knobs and slow motion cable, but it doesn’t take long to get the hang of it.

The Astromaster 76 EQ scores highly on ease of portability. The major parts including the tube, EQ mount and tripod come apart for easier storage and carrying.

If you are thinking of carrying the Astromaster 76 EQ when going camping, on road trips or for watch parties in the garden, it’s perfect.

What accessories are included?

  • Sky Pointer finderscope (attached to telescope)
  • Counterweight
  • Slow motion cable
  • Two 1.25” eyepieces: 10mm and 20mm
  • Erecting prism (built into the 20mm eyepiece)
  • Accessory tray
  • Software CD (you can also download the software from Celestron’s website)

Celestron Astromaster 76 EQ: Pros + Cons


  • Low price.
  • Easy to use – perfect for beginners.
  • Great views of the moon and planets.
  • Includes eyepieces, finderscope and other accessories.
  • Easy to travel with.


  • Carry case not included.
  • Not ideal for deep space observations.

Anything else you should know?

The Astromaster 76 EQ is by no means a high-end telescope. You can’t compare it to a 100+ mm refractor telescope.

But I think it is the perfect choice for beginners on a budget. You can observe some of the most interesting objects in the night sky with good detail and even do some terrestrial viewing.

Think of the 76 EQ as the learning telescope. Use it to introduce your eyes (or your kid’s eyes) to the night sky. As you develop your astronomy hobby, upgrade to a bigger telescope that can peer deeper in space.


The low price of the Astromaster 76 EQ makes it an easy purchase decision for beginners who don’t want to spend a lot of money on an expensive telescope they might not make full use of.

Where to buy?

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