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I'm just about to start.

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18 years 1 month ago #27892 by voyager
Replied by voyager on topic Re: I'm just about to start.
I'm also gonna agree with the Binoculars suggestion.

There are two reasons why I'd recomend Binoculars first:
1) They are much better value for money than a cheap telescope. They will last a lifetime and you will always get pleasure out of them were as a cheap telescope will not do you long.
2) You won't be able to use a telescope immediately. The sky is very very big and when you look at it through a telescope you only see a very very small part of it. The vast vast majority of the sky is empty so the chances of seeing anything interesting by just swining a small telescope skyward randomly are tiny. In order to see anything interesting you need to develop the skills to navigate your way round the sky using techniques like "star hopping". Binoculars are the ideal tool for learning your way round the sky. Once you get good at knowing the sky and finding your way round it with binocular then you are ready to get a telescope, but not before then. If you start off with a telescope you won't be able to find anything but the moon and perhaps Jupiter and Saturn and you'll probably get discouraged and perhaps even pack it in all together.

Good binoculars are the ideal first telescope!

My Home Page - www.bartbusschots.ie

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18 years 1 month ago #27902 by martinastro
Replied by martinastro on topic Re: I'm just about to start.
Hi Ryan

Welcome onboard. Be wary of any telescope that advertise's magnification without a mention of its aperture! As said before aperture is the most important quality of any telesope and this alone will determine how many deep sky objects you will see. Do you have a pic of this scope or website we can visit to check it out?

Binoculars would be a great way to start, you wont have much magnification but you will have a large field of view which will help you locate objects more easily and celestial objects like star clusters, Orion nebula and M31 will look a treat, the darker your sky the more you will see....i wish you the best of luck and make sure to let us know how you get on!

Clear skies

Martin Mc Kenna

coruscations attending the whole length of the luminosity, giving to the phenomena the aspect of a wrathful messenger, and not that of a tranquil body pursuing a harmless course..comet of 1680

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  • DaveGrennan
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  • IFAS Astronomer of the Year 2010
  • IFAS Astronomer of the Year 2010
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18 years 1 month ago #27904 by DaveGrennan
Replied by DaveGrennan on topic Re: I'm just about to start.
I would also agree with what has been said above and add.

The spec mentions a spherical mirror. Thats usually VERY bad. Proper astronomical telescopes normally use a mirror with a parabolic shape. Generally a spherical shape will not allow all the colours of the spectrum to be focussed together. This means you end with with nasty ghost blue fringes around bright objects. These scopes tend to come on very unsteady mounts which makes the job of finding something and keeping it in the field of view very difficult and frustrating.

Do you have a model and make for this telescope?

Also what is your budget? Unfortunately good quality telescopes do not come cheap but the good news is you can get very high quality binoculars for the same sort of money as a small cheap telescope and you WILL see much more stuff like some galaxies and nebulae and beautiful star clusters etc. As the guys said you will not be able to see surface detail on planets.

Couple a good pair of binoculars with a decent book, for example, 'Exploring the Night Sky with Binoculars' by Patrick Moore, or 'Turn Left at Orion' is good too. You will get the maximum value for money this way.

Also look out in the 'For Sale' forum here often you will find decent used telescopes going for far less than you would pay in the shops.

Regards and Clear Skies,

Dave.
J41 - Raheny Observatory.
www.webtreatz.com
Equipment List here

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  • DaveGrennan
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  • IFAS Astronomer of the Year 2010
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18 years 1 month ago #27907 by DaveGrennan
Replied by DaveGrennan on topic Re: I'm just about to start.

Also, the pictures that I have seen here. Is the special equipment I need to capture and image? I mean I can just place the lens of my camera to the telescope :lol:


Ryan I guess from the :lol: you already know the answer to that one!

However astroimaging can be as easy or as complex as you want it to be.
If you mean the high resolution images of galaxies and nebulae etc you are talking about quite complex setups involving often multiple cameras and computer software. However even some of the very detailed planetary photos can be taken with reasonably modest equipment.
(Have a look at the end of this post, and other users posts, for a link to he equipment I use for this)

When considering a telescope try and stretch the budget to include a mounting which has an electronic drive system to track the stars or at least be upgradeable in the future.

Remember even putting your camera on a tripod and taking a shot of the Moon against the foreground can be very rewarding.

Regards and Clear Skies,

Dave.
J41 - Raheny Observatory.
www.webtreatz.com
Equipment List here

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18 years 1 month ago #27916 by ftodonoghue
Replied by ftodonoghue on topic Re: I'm just about to start.

I would also agree with what has been said above and add.

Couple a good pair of binoculars with a decent book, for example, 'Exploring the Night Sky with Binoculars' by Patrick Moore, or 'Turn Left at Orion' is good too. You will get the maximum value for money this way.


dont forget to take a look at the three free handbooks on this site. One for the beginner, one for binocular users and one for deep sky objects for telescopes or large binoculars. All are excellent publications
You will find them all on the link below and they are called observing challenges
www.irishastronomy.org/observers/challenges/index.php

Cheers
Trevor

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18 years 1 month ago #27935 by Macros42
Replied by Macros42 on topic Re: I'm just about to start.

The spec mentions a spherical mirror. Thats usually VERY bad. Proper astronomical telescopes normally use a mirror with a parabolic shape.


Consider the blurb also mentions the "focus length of the mirror" I wouldn't put too much faith in the description (for the OP it should be focal length of the scope not the mirror). I agree with Bart - it's the blurb of a camera shop or Aldi telescope. It might even be good for astrology :D

I second the lads - get some binos. Lidl might have some of their Bresser ones left for the next couple of days. After that I recommend not getting a GoTo. I took Albert's advice on that and I'm glad I did - I learn more from manual scanning that I ever would just pushing buttons.

Steve
--
"Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen" -- Albert Einstein

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