In this video I explain why I recommend a refractor with an equatorial mount. The PowerSeeker is compared to the AstroMaster – both by Celestron.
Since making this video I discovered a scope that may be better than the ones in this video. It is not equatorial but does have slow motion controls. Check it out.
Meade Instruments Infinity 90mm AZ Refractor Telescope
The best way to decide which telescope to buy is to visit your local astronomy club. The people there will spend a good deal of time talking about what is best for you. You can look through their telescopes too.
Another good source of guidance is http://www.cloudynights.com/ which is a very large astronomical community with people from all over the world. You can get your account for free. The account will allow you to post questions in the different forums. They have a Beginners Forum where you can ask your questions and get answers quickly. Be sure to tell them as much as you know about your situation. How much you are willing to pay, what you expect to see, how dark is it where you live, how willing are you to drive to a dark site, etc.
The people at Cloudy Nights will often direct you towards a Dobsonian telescope. This is a Newtonian style telescope (with a mirror in the base) that is mounted on a cradle mount. This type of telescope gives you the most bang-for-the-buck if you consider light gathering the most important thing. You can find these at Orion Telescopes (see link below).
In this video I recommend a refractor telescope instead. My reasoning is that people in the under $200 price range are not going to spend a lot of time using their telescope. They will look at the Moon and some planets but aren’t willing to drive an hour to a dark site to look at fuzzy blobs of light. They also don’t want to learn how to collimate their Newtonian telescope.
The people on Cloudy Nights (the ones who respond to your questions) are all possibly more dedicated than you might be. For this reason they want you to have more light gathering ability. This won’t be as much value for people who just want to look at the Moon and planets from a parking lot with street lights nearby. They also have already learned how to collimate their Newtonian telescopes (which involves buying a $100 laser) and will tell you it is easy (it is, once you learn how).
To get a feel for the advice you get there read some comments by someone looking for an under $200 scope for an 8 year old.
Your Cloudy Nights membership can get you a discount on things you buy from Astronomics (first link below).
PowerSeeker 80EQ Telescope
AstroMaster 70EQ Telescope
All of the AstroMaster Telescopes
All of the Celestron Telescopes