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What can i see with this? (astronomy on a budget)

by jehan60188
Tags: astronomy, budget
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jehan60188
#1
Apr7-12, 09:30 AM
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http://www.sciplus.com/singleItem.cfm/terms/16809

I want to get this, since the price is right, and I'm a constantly-broke student- I figure this will provide more hours of entertainment/mental stimulation/social interaction/etc than the same amount of money spent at a bar/video game/amusement park/etc.

If I point this at saturn (is that even viewable these days?), will I see a bright point, a squished point, or a proper ring?
what about jupiter and its moons? points, or... something better?

thanks!
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chemisttree
#2
Apr7-12, 12:48 PM
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You will see brighter open clusters, globular clusters and some of the larger faint fuzzies like the Andromeda Galaxy. The Double Double Cluster is a great target with this little scope. You can see many of the double stars if their separation is sufficient. The Moon will be OK but not great. The planets will be OK but not great either. You will be able to tell that the planets are disks but you won't see much detail with the supplied eyepieces. You will see two bands on Jupiter, you will see the phases of Venus and you will be able to tell that Saturn has a ring... a lot better than an elongated blob! Near the edge of field the stars and anything you look at will be distorted and a bit out of focus but the images near the center are 'fair'. The focuser is a bit rough and you might have a little difficulty finding the exact focus point but with practice it will be a minor problem. The eyepieces are really horrible and I would replace them with a couple of inexpensive plossls.

This is a wide-field scope so don't expect much from it at higher magnification. With the examples (3) that I've owned the only eyepiece that worked well with it was the 25mm plossl. You can buy them used for as little as $10-$15 online. Reviewed here.
Nabeshin
#3
Apr7-12, 09:17 PM
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General advice, if you're only capable of spending this amount of money on astronomical equipment, I advocate first buying a decent pair of binoculars.

Creator
#4
Apr7-12, 10:00 PM
P: 547
What can i see with this? (astronomy on a budget)

Quote Quote by jehan60188 View Post
http://www.sciplus.com/singleItem.cfm/terms/16809

I want to get this, since the price is right, and I'm a constantly-broke student- I figure this will provide more hours of entertainment/mental stimulation/social interaction/etc than the same amount of money spent at a bar/video game/amusement park/etc.

!
Well; I think for a college student it has limited utility....like maybe checking out the women's dormitory from a safe distance... :)
Well; you did say entertainment and amusement. :)

..
davenn
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Apr8-12, 12:21 AM
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Quote Quote by jehan60188 View Post
http://www.sciplus.com/singleItem.cfm/terms/16809
I want to get this, since the price is right, and I'm a constantly-broke student- I figure this will provide more hours of entertainment/mental stimulation/social interaction/etc than the same amount of money spent at a bar/video game/amusement park/etc.
If I point this at saturn (is that even viewable these days?), will I see a bright point, a squished point, or a proper ring?
what about jupiter and its moons? points, or... something better?
thanks!
Hi Jehan

having recently having got one of those scopes, its was a freebee giveaway with the much larger Celestron scope I bought. Its a nice wee scope but dont expect too much from it.

Yes it will give you a better view of star clusters and some of the bright nebulae and galaxies.
I could make out the 4 Galilean moons of Jupiter, Mars and Saturn are now coming up into
so will have a look at them over the next week and let you know :)

cheers
Dave
davenn
#6
Apr10-12, 06:49 AM
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Hi Jehan

sorry about the delayed response
The weather has been a bit crappy here over the last few days, finally a clear nite tonite

The scope comes with 2 eyepieces a 20mm and a 4 mm

The 20mm eyepiece is not overly brilliant, in fact produces a lousey flarey image
Mars was NOT discernable as a disc Saturn was oval shaped.
With the 4mm eyepiece, Mars was an obvious small disc, and Saturns rings were easily discernable and could make out the gap between the inner ring and the planet.
The seeing wasnt brilliant tonite and couldnt pick out the Cassini Division

I may yet try several of my Plossel eyepieces in it and see how it looks :)
It may prove to be a much more useful scope with a respectable 25mm and a ~ 10mm Plossel :)

cheers
Dave
Chronos
#7
Apr11-12, 12:41 AM
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I hate to burst your bubble, but, this is a waste of money. A good binocular is a better investment.
davenn
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Apr11-12, 05:46 AM
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Quote Quote by Chronos View Post
I hate to burst your bubble, but, this is a waste of money. A good binocular is a better investment.
I assume you were referring to the OP and not me ?

Dave
jehan60188
#9
Apr12-12, 08:54 AM
P: 204
thanks for all the responses!

I ended up getting this, and used it at a park on a second date. It went well- I saw jupiter as a bright point, with 3 dim points next to it (the moons, I assume)
I also looked at venus, and mars, but couldn't get much from them.
If I used my imagination, I could see the rings on Saturn.

Will a plossel eyepiece improve what i see? Will "any" eyepiece work with this? Should I just check on ebay for one? Or is the receptacle for eyepieces non-standardized?
davenn
#10
Apr12-12, 03:59 PM
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I didnt get a chance to try my plossel eyepieces last nite, I was just too unwell to go outside.

With the 4mm eyepiece supplied you should easily see the rings of Saturn, as I commented in my earlier post. Just confirm that you got a 20mm and a 4 mm eyepiece with your scope ?

If Im well enough, I will try my good quality eyepieces tonite and report back to you :)
DONT buy anything till I try them out OK !

Dave
jehan60188
#11
Apr12-12, 05:52 PM
P: 204
there is a 4 mm and 20 mm eyepiece. I use one for finding things, and then the other to zoom in more.
When I change out eyepieces, I get better magnification, but it's no deep space, ultra field telescope! I have to squint a little to convince myself that saturn has rings.
Jupiter looks like a point.
Am I doing something wrong? There aren't a lot of adjustments to make on this- just the focus knob at the eye piece.
Nabeshin
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Apr12-12, 06:18 PM
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Quote Quote by jehan60188 View Post
there is a 4 mm and 20 mm eyepiece. I use one for finding things, and then the other to zoom in more.
When I change out eyepieces, I get better magnification, but it's no deep space, ultra field telescope! I have to squint a little to convince myself that saturn has rings.
Jupiter looks like a point.
Am I doing something wrong? There aren't a lot of adjustments to make on this- just the focus knob at the eye piece.
Here's a nice tool to simulate what you should 'expect' to see in terms of magnitication:
http://www.telescope-simulator.com/i...=article&id=45

You can adjust things to the settings of your telescope. When I do it and look at Saturn, it barely is resolved as a slightly bulged disk. Add in the difficulties of actual astronomy, and it might be a tough spot.

Tips: Venus is never really much to look at, in my opinion. Seeing the phase can be interesting about once, but other than that it's featureless. Your main targets should be globular and open clusters, as these objects are generally big and don't require much magnification to enjoy. Depending on how dark the sky is, you might also be able to get some decent views of Andromeda and the orion nebula.


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