I got another chance to view Comet Swan last night (Oct. 18). Being lazy from a day's work, I decided to use my 12X60 binoculars hand-held for the initial hunt. After making two finder charts with Skymap Pro, one with magnitudes and one without, I started scanning my light polluted west. The sky is more transparent tonight at 19:30 and I spot Swan within 5 minutes. It was time to break out the tripod mounted 25X100 binoculars. What a beautiful sight!! The program and map say it's 8.0 mag., but it looks brighter. The green color is somewhat subdued compared with my last observation and tonight a faint fan of gas is visible in the giant binocs. After checking FOV stars with Swan using the out-of-focus method, I estimated the comet's magnitude at 6.8 to 7.0. This isn't the best method for estimating comet magnitude, but it's the fastest when viewing a comet rapidly diving for the northwest horizon.
Final thoughts: This comet is easy to observe, check it out before it dims!
Here are some great photos and observing notes from one of the Skymap Pro forum observers. He can't be beat when it comes to this kind of sky shooting.
Keep looking up!