There won't be a large gap in performance between the two, but both should be mounted on a tripod due to their magnifications and physical size, though the 15x70 could be used in a pinch without a tripod.
If you are looking for something that does not need a tripod, I would recommend scaling back to a 7x50, such as the the Nikon Action extreme 7x50, http://www.opticsplanet.com/nikon-7x50- ... -7239.html or 10x50, http://www.opticsplanet.com/nikon-10x50 ... -7245.html With either of these, you can still do a great deal of astronomy and also have something quite useable for other applications. Optics and construction (waterproof) are excellent.
Having a waterproof bino is not an essential feature in an astronomy binocular, but it is still a good feature to have, especially on those cool, dewy and frostty nights.
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