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Thread: Help! (Buying Telescopes)

  1. #1 Help! (Buying Telescopes) 
    Forum Freshman e_atom's Avatar
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    Hi,

    I've been getting into astronomy as of the past few months. I started with trying to look for stars with my eye, then I invested in a nice pair of binoculars and joined my Astronomy club, but I think it's time for a new telescope -- problem is, I have no clue where to start. I've been looking at this one, (Telescope)but i'm not sure. I know the basics in buying a telescope, but nothing more. I hope someone here can help me, thanks!


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  3. #2  
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    Stick to a good pair of 10*50 for about 12 months until you are fully familiar with the night sky, give yourself plenty of time to choose a telescope. If you must buy one now make sure you go for an 'equatorial mount. what is your budget? - your astronomy club should be able to help.


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  4. #3  
    Forum Freshman e_atom's Avatar
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    I don't want to go any higher than $850 as of now, and buy 10x50 you're talking about binoculars (Pretty sure you are) I have a 7x50 pair and they suit me fine. I've been getting situated with the night sky for about 5 months now, gazing almost every night, so I have a pretty good understanding as of now.
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  5. #4  
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    Can you see the milky way or are you in a built up area with a lot of light pollution?

    If you are in a city you might want to buy a high power compact telescope which you can chuck in the car and drive to 'light free zone' just something else to take into account.
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  6. #5  
    Forum Freshman e_atom's Avatar
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    I live in a small town in upstate NY, in other words, yeah, I can, no pollution or even lots of light.
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  7. #6  
    Forum Freshman e_atom's Avatar
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    bump, what are some good telescopes?
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  8. #7  
    Forum Professor captaincaveman's Avatar
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    i got one for my wife recently which was an 8" dobsonian, make is skywatch skyliner, with these types you get alot of tube for your money and with your price range could probably go to 10"
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  9. #8  
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    You'll get more light for your bucks with a dobsonian it's true, as they have a very simple mount, If you are thinking of photography now or later though a dob is not the one to for. An Equatorial mount will 'follow' a star using only one control, A dob will not. Dob's are also good for prtability, you sacrifice ease of use, and and ability to take good long time exposure piccies. As with any purchase, the more think about it, the more likely you are to get what you want.
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  10. #9  
    Forum Professor captaincaveman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billco
    You'll get more light for your bucks with a dobsonian it's true, as they have a very simple mount, If you are thinking of photography now or later though a dob is not the one to for. An Equatorial mount will 'follow' a star using only one control, A dob will not. Dob's are also good for prtability, you sacrifice ease of use, and and ability to take good long time exposure piccies. As with any purchase, the more think about it, the more likely you are to get what you want.

    thats very true billco, we got a dob for mainly deep space and will probably fit an equitoral mount at a later date :-D
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by captaincaveman
    Quote Originally Posted by billco
    You'll get more light for your bucks with a dobsonian it's true, as they have a very simple mount, If you are thinking of photography now or later though a dob is not the one to for. An Equatorial mount will 'follow' a star using only one control, A dob will not. Dob's are also good for prtability, you sacrifice ease of use, and and ability to take good long time exposure piccies. As with any purchase, the more think about it, the more likely you are to get what you want.

    thats very true billco, we got a dob for mainly deep space and will probably fit an equitoral mount at a later date :-D
    You can get an extra three or four inches for your money, in the dark of night that's very important... :wink:
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  12. #11 Re: Help! (Buying Telescopes) 
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    Quote Originally Posted by e_atom
    Hi,

    I've been getting into astronomy as of the past few months. I started with trying to look for stars with my eye, then I invested in a nice pair of binoculars and joined my Astronomy club, but I think it's time for a new telescope -- problem is, I have no clue where to start. I've been looking at this one, (Telescope)but i'm not sure. I know the basics in buying a telescope, but nothing more. I hope someone here can help me, thanks!
    Since I am primarily a theoretical astronomer, I cannot give you much advice but the basics as I know them.

    You made the right step in joining an astronomy club. Especially if there are members that have built their own telescopes. That is the best way to go if you do not have much money to spend,
    The Newtonian scopes are the cheapest to buy and you can also make your own.

    What do you plan to observe mostly?
    I understand that refractors are best for planetary observing. The bigger, the more costly.
    If you are planning on going into deep space like the Virgo galaxies, then you need bigger and better scopes like the Matsukovs or Cassegrains that are the costliest. So it is a matter of dollars.
    Being fully equipped can cost you thousands of dollars.

    NS
    Real science is objective, not subjective
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  13. #12  
    Forum Senior miomaz's Avatar
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    Ok, what can I do with ~200$(acctually euros) , so a low budget telescope, what will I able to see with it? I have seldomly worked with real telescopes (more with pictures of the web)
    would be nice if some one could help me out (din't want to double post a topic so...)
    I haven't come to fight my word, but to find the truth.
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  14. #13  
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    If it's your first go at astronomy I'd recommend you buy a pair of astronimical binoculars, they will let you see the craters on the moon, the moons of jupiter, and possibly an indication of the rings of saturn, the andromenda galaxy and other items. Also you can use them for other things. Get to know the night sky first and where everything is. If you buy a telescope for that sort of money you won't get much, and it's quality is likely to be poor, and if you do not know your way around the sky you'll be dissappointed. Binoculars will also let you see many more stars.

    The first figure is the magnification factor, the second is the lens diameter. The higher the second figure the more light you will let in.

    10x50 MIN for astro. - hand held most astronomers choice.
    12x70 medium for astro - heavy
    20x80 excellent. - but need a tripod

    If you buy something like 20x40 the magnification is too high for the object lens and youll be dissappointed. go for the highest second figure.
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  15. #14  
    Forum Senior miomaz's Avatar
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    would somthing like 20 to 80 x70 work? thanks for you're help.
    I haven't come to fight my word, but to find the truth.
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