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Telescope that can easily be connected to a laptop

  1. Apr 25, 2014 #1
    Greetings! I have read every post in this thread and I'm suitably impressed with the variety and quality of posters so I think I may get a good answer here. Although I have only minimal to moderate knowledge of where things are in the sky, I do see the value in Dobson's and respect the recommendations. If I was buying a 1st scope for me that's what I'd do. However, I'm on a mission.

    Recently I bought an $80US microscope that connects to a PC and displays on the screen for the purpose of making it easier for my 9 year old granddaughter to "get right to it" and have fun so that she would become enthused about Science and the diversity of the world around her, including the normally unseen parts. It has been a huge success and I would like to repeat that on the Macro scale with a telescope.

    With just one 2 hour session, and no real tutorial (just her inquisitive mind watching) the next time she could set it up all by herself and dial up whatever she pleased. She seems to respect that it is an instrument and not a toy and treats it with respect and care. So I'm looking for a telescope, perhaps even one that like her microscope that can easily be connected to a laptop for viewing if there aren't serious shortcomings to that. I would like it to have a fairly clear view of at least some details for Jupiter, Mars, and Saturn and at least a glimmer of sights like Andromeda. I doubt I can achieve all of this for less than $300 but I'd prefer not to spend more than $700-800.

    So, is it possible with some considerable convenience in mind (I don't want to start off making it a job to learn the skies just yet so Go To seems a must) to fulfill this quest or must I wait until I can spend more? Considering my budget and what accessories I will likely need right away I had considered http://www.highpointscientific.com/...n-nexstar-90-slt-computerized-telescope-22087 this one as an example of what I suppose would just barely fulfill my/our minimal requirements. Am I on the right track?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 30, 2014 #2
  4. May 2, 2014 #3
    Thank you very much, Neumeric. I was unaware of Meade and I'm now curious as to why google results for the Celestron vs/ the Meade are so heavily weighted in favor of the Meade in terms of the number of (excellent) images included in results. Is the Meade brand more highly regarded by more serious devotees?

    Oh geez! I haven't even placed an order yet and already I'm infected with Aperture Lust. Man! 130's get some amazing pics, even very clear Red Spot images. Whew! :biggrin:
  5. May 2, 2014 #4


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    Meade and Celestron have been competing fiercely for decades. Both have a loyal following and both make high quality instruments. There are frequent arguments extoling the virtue of one brand over the other, but, in reality are both superb. Aperture lust is easily cured by a session or two of hog wrestling a big scope. Anything over about 8" diameter is nearly as much fun as a blind date with your sister.
  6. May 9, 2014 #5


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    As Chronos said
    there's not really any difference between Meade and Celestron
    I have owned a 10" f4.5 Meade German Equatorial in the past
    and own a Celestron CPC9.25" GOTO scope now. Both have been great scopes

    A decent GOTO scope is going to set you back LOTS of money
    There's a huge range of digital cameras for telescopes on the market with a huge price range and quality
    NOTE it is VERY important to get a camera suitable for your particular scope

    As suggested, you can play around with cheap web cams and get some surprising results

    The only thing I would have against buying a Meade instrument is that the company isn't doing so well any more
    specially since being relocated from California to Mexico ... customer support is severely lacking and the company's future isn't looking good.

    It was the main reason why I went to Celestron for my latest scope

    Last edited: May 9, 2014
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