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to all those who have a telescope. i am looking to purchase one (advice)

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posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 06:14 PM
Hi all, i am looking to purchase a telescope and i have no idea what specs to look for or what differentiates a good one from a bad one. What kinds of scopes do you use, and what price range should i be looking in for a good star gazing. I figure this is about the only place i can get a honest review of equipment.

posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 06:41 PM
reply to post by lcbjr1979

This same question has been posted many times before, please use the search function in future

Here are some previous posts foryou to browse...

Happy hunting

edit on 20-3-2011 by Mythkiller because: Spelling

posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 07:02 PM
You dont see what you think youll see but go for it.

posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 07:08 PM
reply to post by lcbjr1979

Try Very good advice here my friend. I got a celestron 5 se 18 months ago and just upgraded to a celestron cpc800. If you get a reflector scope, bigger is better so really its down to your budget.


posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 07:13 PM

off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 07:20 PM
reply to post by paperface

I agree with your post!!!!

When i set out to get my first scope it was quite daunting as i dont have an astronomy background. Having to trawl endless threads would have just made it more complicated. I dont see anything wrong in a fellow member asking for advice to help them further their knowledge. Too many smart alecs on here now!

The site i posted in my last thread was very helpful to me. Its great some members are so great at using the search thing, its a pity they aren't so quick to help out fellow members with advice relating to the original question??? Like i say, no one likes a clever dick!
edit on 20-3-2011 by albertfothergill because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 07:29 PM

Originally posted by lcbjr1979
Hi all, i am looking to purchase a telescope and i have no idea what specs to look for or what differentiates a good one from a bad one. What kinds of scopes do you use, and what price range should i be looking in for a good star gazing. I figure this is about the only place i can get a honest review of equipment.

First, you need to determine exactly what would be your prime interest in the heavens. Will it be Moon, planets, stars, galaxies, comets, asteroids, a scope for looking also at the neighbors or landscapes or what. How serious are you going to be? How much money are you willing to spend?

These all will have a bearing on what would be the best choice. Also, you can consider your local weather, typical atmospheric conditions, light pollution and how much time you can give to the hobby. It is not exactly a family activity. Most importnt is your personal style. Can you spend cold and chilly minutes or hours staring through a lense at all hours of the night waiting for just the opportunity that you seek?

You can do this? Good! the pleasures can be self-satisfying. Now all you have to do is do some legitimate research via the internet, astronomy books from a used-book store, and you will be about ready to find a scope that will best suit you needs. Or you can just go to Walmart. (joke!)

posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 07:29 PM
you're probably looking at at least a $300 venture.
Reflectors are best for noobs in my opinion, as you can get more aperture (light gathering capabilities) for less money.

While reflectors usually require a little more upkeep than a refractor, and are slightly more difficult to clean, collimate, and carry around..
They allow you to see the "most stuff" for the amount of money you pay.

and really, the upkeep, cleaning, and collimation of reflectors is not all that difficult,
just a little more so than a refracting scope.

Refracting telescope~ Long thin tube, with lenses at the front and rear.

Reflecting scope~ shorter, wider tube, with 2 mirrors and a lens in the eyepiece. (open at the top/front)

There are also other types of scopes also, but for beginners, its usually a reflector or a refractor.

Today, "GoTo" scopes are pretty affordable. ( handheld remote control for slewing and controlling the scope digitally), also comes with huge star databases that find and track objects automatically for you.

Many astronomers will say that "GoTo" scopes are not great for beginners because they don;t allow the beginner to use their brains as much as they would without it.

They feel that one can learn more if they are not given a computer built into their scopes, telling them what everything is.

I agree somewhat,
But I have found that having a goto scope is an amazing thing!
and one can learn tons from them!

You may be learning less from books and the like..
but the built in computer teaches you a lot also!

Buying a "GoTo" scope will cost more...
and it can also take away from your aperture.... (if spending more money on GoTo, and less on actual aperture.)

So, You could buy a 5" reflector scope, with GoTo capabilities, that might cost around $300...
Or, you could take that same $300, and do without the "GoTo" computer, and gain a few more inches in aperture. (mirror size), and possibly get an 8" reflector instead.

Which would allow you to see quite a bit more, but you would be guiding the scope and learning by yourself, without the aid of the scope teaching you.

cloudynights forum is a great place for beginners and pros alike.
And all the pros will be more than happy to help you pick a good scope for your needs.

Im sure Im leaving out a lot,
but if you have any specific questions/requests/whatever..
Feel free to ask.
I'll answer what I can.

Im excited for you!

I remember when I got my first real scope..
and it was one of the most exciting times ever!

Clear Skies!

posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 07:47 PM
reply to post by lcbjr1979

It all depends on what you wanna see or do, if you wanna see the planets and moon ect. you need high magnification, if you wanna see deep sky objects like other galaxys etc. you need wide field eyepiece and 6" or larger objective lens. For Astrophotography forget about it unless you have at least $2,000 - $3,000 laying around and thats on a strict budget. Best bang for the buck is a Dobsonian telescope, only drawback is there is no automatic "Go-To" like some of the other telescopes some do have Manual Go-To though, for a beginner though a Dobsonian Telescope is the way to go and get a decent laser collimator as well to calibrate the optics because you will bump it and that is enough to throw the lens alignment out of whack. Think of a telescope as a light bucket the larger the diameter bucket the more light its able to collect, the larger the bucket the further into space you'll be able to see. Another important tip that you should keep in mind before purchasing a telescope is that you wanna be able to transport it with relative ease, if you get one thats too large its much harder to store and transport and also needs more time to adjust to outside temperature differences. Another good thing would to maybe check and see if your communtiy has a stargazing group and see if you can tag along and peer through there scopes, talk with people and soak up as much information as you can.
edit on 20/3/11 by Aliensdoexist because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 07:53 PM
Best advice , join a telescope club first . Get out and try a few out before you but !
A telescope club should be easy enough to find if you are I a city and it will be to your benifit .
There is a lot to learn when it comes to a good telescope and you may be surprised to find out just how hard they are to use .

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