Best Guide on Choosing Your First Astronomy Telescopes [2022]


Okay, let’s get some education on astronomy telescopes, shall we? You think you’re ready to purchase your first telescope, which is fantastic. First, there are several things you need to figure out about yourself or about whoever will be utilising that telescope the majority of the time.

It is important to have answers to these issues even before attempting to create a budget.

Who will be making the most frequent use of the telescope. Is it an infant or a toddler? If this is the case, you will likely require a more durable scope to shield it from knocks and shocks. Because they are precise optical instruments, telescopes require special care and attention.

Who is responsible for taking care of things, you or the end user? Telescopes used for astronomy tend to carry a hefty price tag. You want to make sure that it will serve you well for at least a few years before you decide to upgrade to something better. Take this into great consideration, particularly if you are purchasing something for a child. Because to your carelessness, you do not want to be forced to purchase a new scope.

Where will you find the greatest demand for the scope? Do you have a special place that you like to go? Is it simple to go to where you’re going to be watching? Will you have to first load the scope into your car, then drive to a location, and set it up when you are there?

Or are you going to be able to attach the scope and have it at the ready all the time? How much weight are you able to carry about without feeling uncomfortable?

Keep in mind that the telescope that is utilised the most effectively for astronomy is the best one. It’s likely that you won’t use it as often or like it as much if it’s too cumbersome to set up and transfer to your viewing position due to its weight or complexity.

The next step is to consider how the scope will be utilised. What exactly are you going to be focusing on? If you have a good scope, you’ll be able to get clear views of a variety of celestial objects. However, different types of scopes each have their own advantages and disadvantages, and some are more suited to certain aspects of stargazing than others.

Decide what your primary objectives will be, particularly for smaller children, and use that information to select a telescope that fits your financial constraints while also catering to your primary area of interest.

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Choosing Your Astronomy Telescope

Now would be a good moment to discuss the scopes, wouldn’t it? Magnification or power is something that a lot of people think about, and it’s something that a lot of sales copy emphasises.

This is not the beginning of where you should start. The aperture size of an astronomy telescope is the most crucial feature it can have. For a telescope to be useful, it must be able to gather light, and the aperture or lens size determines how much light it can gather. The ability to gather more light is directly proportional to the aperture size. Therefore, it is recommended that you choose the lens with the biggest aperture size that you can afford.

The focal length of the telescope tube divided by the focal length of the eyepiece that is being used is what determines the power of the telescope, also known as the magnification. If the eyepiece has a focal length of 4 millimetres and the scope has a focal length of 300 millimetres, then the power is 75 times (300 divided by 4 equals 75).

Just keep in mind that as the power of the magnifier or the magnification grows, the image will become less sharp and bright. When you want to magnify something, you take the same quantity of light and spread it out across a greater area. This makes the object appear larger.

In most cases, when the magnification is doubled, the image will be one-fourth as bright and one-half as sharp.

It is recommended that the maximum power be around fifty times the aperture size measured in inches, or two times the aperture size measured in millimetres. This indicates that a magnification of no more than 300 should be used for a 6 inch aperture.

The quality of your “seeing” as well as the turbulence in the environment are both factors that influence how clearly you can make out individual things. Loss of sight can occur when there is turbulence in the air as a result of heat radiating from the ground when it and the surrounding surroundings cool down from the sun during the day.

When you try to look at an object, it will appear to be swimming and shimmering because of the turbulence in the air. Some nights are going to be more difficult than others. By decreasing the magnification of the image, you can lessen the effect of the distortion.

If you want to test the “seeing,” gaze at the stars; a lot of twinkling indicates that there is more distortion in the air.

Determine how much may be seen that night by looking at the star Megrez, which has a magnitude of 3.4. In the asterism known as the Big Dipper, the star Megrez serves as the link between the handle and the actual dipper.

Also, once you’ve arrived at your destination and gotten everything organised, give your eyes around half an hour to acclimatise to the low light levels.

This will cause the pupils to widen, which will result in improved vision as your eyes will be able to take in more light.

Use a red light or a flashlight coated in red cellophane whenever you need light to see something, whether it be star charts or anything else. This will prevent your night vision from being impaired.

Don’t Forget The Mount

You are going to need a mount or tripod of a high quality. The alt-azimuth kind is the most affordable, and most of the ones that come with scopes are adequate for their intended use; nonetheless, you should check to make sure that they are not of poor quality.

In order to track objects with the alt-azimuth mount, you will need to move the scope both left and right, as well as up and down.

As your skills improve, you could find that you need a motorised mount. At some point in time, you are going to realise that you need a dobsonian or equatorial type mount.

Now, let’s have a look at the various configurations of astronomical telescopes.

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