Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

First telescope Advice

Tags:
  1. Sep 7, 2014 #1
    I have made up my mind about buying a telescope. The one i will be buying is:
    Right Here

    But i do still have some questions. This is my first telescope, will it be easy for a new comer to use this telescope efficiently and just easy to understand?
    The website also has recommend attachments for the telescope. Are any other attachments really necessary? And if anyone has had one like this i would be glad to see your opinion on it.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 8, 2014 #2

    Bandersnatch

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Hi nick1o2

    The telescope looks good. An upper-middle range newcomer telescope, I'd say.

    Don't bother with the accessories - you'll be well set to start playing with your purchase as it is. Besides, you can always get them later.
    But if you'd like to decide for yourself, here's a short description of what those three listed are:

    -an adjustable eyepiece. You're already supplied with two eyepieces, one for high and one for low magnification(eyepiece focal length is what determines magnification in telescopes). That is, you'll have two magnification settings, achieveable by exchanging eyepieces. The extra accessory could arguably make "zooming in" on some objects a bit more comfortable(the process of swapping eyepieces might make you lose the target from sight).

    -basically a cheap digital camera. Connect it to your laptop and take screenshots. I was never much into astrophotography, but I'd think this here item is just a glorified webcam that's unlikely to let you do much, maybe some shots of the Moon. I'd leave such considerations for when you're more experienced.

    -a collimator helps adjust misaligned optics. Shouldn't be a problem for a fresh-out-of-shop telescope.

    The main thing to learn, will be how to set up the equatorial mount. This is the kind of mount that corrects for the fact that objects in the sky follow angled semi-circular paths, so that(unlike a simpler, altitude-azimuth mount) it lets you track the target just by adjusting a single knob. It's a huge convenience, especially for higher magnifications, as the sky revolves quite fast indeed - as I'm sure you'll come to appreciate in due time.
    Do a google or forum search for "equatorial mount" and you should find plenty of advice, should the user manual prove insufficient.

    Lastly, I'd recomment reading this sticky thread:
    https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=391086
    before you decide on your purchase.
     
  4. Sep 8, 2014 #3

    Drakkith

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    I mostly agree with Bandersnatch. Don't worry too much about accessories at the moment. Focus on learning how to set up and align your mount/scope and how to adjust the optics. Your telescope should come with a manual and in that manual it should explain how to align the optics (called collimation), but if it doesn't then you can google "newtonian collimation", since you have a newtonian reflector.

    The one thing I would suggest is a basic astronomy book to help you find and identify the constellations and possible viewing targets. There should be plenty in the science section of your local bookstore. Browse around, I'm sure you'll find a good one.
     
  5. Sep 8, 2014 #4
    A few things.
    Firstly, a few of the things that telescope comes with are ridiculous. The short focal length eyepiece provided will essentially be worthless. 215x on a 150mm telescope should almost never be used. It is pretty rare to get nights where the seeing allows better than 150x (in any telescope) in my experience. Many nights here in Austin, even 96x can be too high (especially in the summer).
    Also, when they say objects down to magnitude 13 can be seen, they are referring to a site with a naked eye limiting magnitude of 6. Considering that most people live in cities, and that you are probably from Europe (considering the price is in euros), your naked eye limiting magnitude will be not be this good. With my 10" (254mm) Dobsonian, I can see down to about magnitude 12-13 here (naked eye limiting magnitude 4.6-5.2). Just a note: this is for stars! With the level of light pollution here, diffuse objects need to have a surface brightness of around 16-17 to be visible to me (sky brightness about 18.5).
    If you do end up getting this telescope, I strongly suggest buying a Telrad finder. It will make finding objects and polar alignment much easier.

    Also, you should spend time learning the constellations with the naked eye before getting a telescope. It makes your life MUCH easier. Even looking for fainter constellations (like Delphinus) from light polluted areas will improve your observing skills.

    It does seem like a good telescope for the beginner, especially considering the price.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: First telescope Advice
  1. Telescope Advice (Replies: 7)

  2. Telescope Advice (Replies: 21)

  3. Telescope advice (Replies: 14)

Loading...