Telescope Buying Guide

Telescopes are optical instruments used to magnify, observe and monitor distant objects. They are usually used to view the activities of stars and the planets. Though expensive, owning a telescope enables you to get a better view of the earth and the universe at large. It can also be used for educational purposes and as a healthy hobby during leisure and to eliminate boredom. Owning a telescope can also earn you recognition when you make discoveries!

 

Selecting A Good Telescope:

Just like other machines, perfection is impossible to achieve. There is no brand of telescopes that can meet the desires of everybody. It would always come to individual tastes, expectations, and needs. However, there are certain qualities that every good telescope should have. They include:

 

  • Aperture:

This is one of the most important qualities of a telescope. It refers to the size of the lens or mirror that sets the light from far objects. This feature determines the image quality; the larger the aperture, the clearer and more detailed the image. A larger aperture provides more clarity than having to magnify with a smaller lens. It would only create a blurry image.

 

  • Mirror or Lens:

A telescope uses either refracting lenses or reflecting mirrors to focus light on the object. Smaller lenses often use the lenses and are more suitable for viewing celestial and terrestrial objects, but if you desire to see more distant objects, it is advised you opt for telescopes with mirrors.

 

  • Resolution:

Resolution refers to a telescope’s ability to observe details in objects. A telescope with high resolution would see the colors and shapes of distant objects distinctly while one with low resolution would blur the images into one.

 

  • Eye Pieces:

Check that your telescope has comfortable and high-quality eyepieces. This would ensure you get great results when you view the object through them.

 

  • Magnifying Power:

The ability of a telescope to magnify enables its focus on smaller pieces of objects in the sky. Unlike other telescopes, this is quite important for solar telescopes.

 

  • Instrument quality:

Besides the camera, the quality of other instruments would also determine how good a telescope is.

 

 

Telescopes also come in different types. These types also come with different features. Examples are:

  • Meade Polaris 130 Reflector Telescope:

This telescope comes with a great design and excellent machining. It enables you to learn more about the movement of the Earth as you would need to manually adjust its position to locate celestial objects.

 

 

  • Celestron Regal M2 100ED ‘Spotting Scope’:

This tough and lightweight telescope is great for outdoor viewing. It guarantees you an amazing time of observing and capturing.

 

 

  • Orion Star Max 90:

This lightweight telescope is also suitable for grab and goes astronomy. It also includes 3 additional eyepieces that allow you to select the best view. It offers great flexibility, convenient use, and easy operation.

 

 

  • Celestron AstroFi 90 Retractor Wi-Fi:

This telescope, via its network, takes its commands from your smartphone. This is very suitable for observing the planet because it gives you a detailed look into the universe. It is also very portable.

 

  • Orion Starblast 6i ‘Intelliscope’:

This ready-to-work telescope gives a great view of the sky. Its 6-inch mirror enables you to gobble light waves even from centuries of years past or from seconds before. It makes for one awesome source of entertainment.

 

 

  • Astronomers Without Borders One Sky 130 Reflector Telescope:

The features of this telescope include 130mm aperture, good quality glass, two great quality eyepieces, a built-in handle and a compact design. Besides, when buying this telescope, you are contributing to the non-profit organization; Astronomers Without Borders.

 

 

  • Orion 3-inch FunScope:

This compact and lightweight telescope surely deliver the universe into the hands of its owner. It also comes with two eyepieces and a Barlow lens. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another major classification of Telescopes based on qualities are:

  • Refractor Telescopes:

These telescopes are built with lenses that refract light and channel it along a path within the tube of the telescope. The light of this focal point is captured by an eyepiece to create the resultant image.

 

 

  • Achromatic Telescope:

This telescope uses a special lens to achieve very light dimensions to correct the abnormality created by the diverse wavelengths inside the telescopic tube.

 

  • Apochromatic Telescope:

This telescope also corrects wave chromatic abnormality but instead of two wavelengths, its lens can disperse three.

 

  • Superachromat Telescopes:

This telescope also corrects chromatic aberrations but instead of two or three, its lenses are built to be able to disperse four colors at the same time.

 

  • Galileoscopes:

This very affordable telescope was designed to bring the people closer to astronomy. It is suitable and economical for both amateur and kids.

 

  • Keplerian Telescopes:

This telescope was designed with convex lenses that widen the range of view. It enables higher magnification capacity for telescopes.

 

  • Reflector Telescopes:

These telescopes are built with mirrors that lengthen the path of the length that enters it. It enables higher quality and better image clarity.

 

  • Newtonian Reflector:

This is Isaac Newton’s original invention of 1668. It uses mirrors and eliminates the need for lenses. This takes care of the issue of chromatic aberration.

 

  • Cassegrain Reflector Telescopes:

This telescope combines the strength of concave and convex mirrors to modify the light path. This enables greater magnification.

 

  • Liquid Mirror Telescope:

This telescope uses a liquid mirror instead of a glass mirror to reflect light. The reflective liquid is usually Mercury.

 

  • Three Mirror Anastigmat Telescopes:

This telescope is designed with three mirrors that correct different abnormalities to create a clearer image. These abnormalities include coma, astigmatism and spherical.

 

  • Catadioptric Telescopes:

This is a combination of mirrors and lenses to create a clearer view, as well as correct aberrations. 

 

  • Infrared Telescopes:

This telescope is designed to gather information about the Earth and especially its history. Dry altitude climates are more suitable for their functionality.

 

  • Ultra Violet Telescopes:

These telescopes are designed to give more information about other planets using UV light. This information would include the planet’s density and temperature.

 

  • X -Ray Telescopes:

These telescopes were designed to monitor the effects of huge explosions and black holes in the universe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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