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  1. The "No EQ" DSO Challenge!

    100 pages and counting
  2. I didn't say all "Bird-Jones" telescopes are bad, but a lot of them are. They include a spherical mirror and a barlow lens to help with focusing. If you're enjoying your telescope, great! More power to you, and by all means don't take my word as labeling all these scopes as bad. It is a fact however, that they are known for providing bad views,hard to collimate and are generally to be avoided.
  3. What is a "department-store" type telescope? These are cheap telescopes usually sold in toy shops and department stores. They are sold as entry-level telescopes at affordable prices, and seem like a good bargain. Should I get one? It seems like a good deal! Absolutely not! These telescopes are to be avoided at all costs. What seems like the beginning of a life-long hobby may just discourage you from astronomy. You will probably end up fighting the scope more than enjoying it. At this price point, you are better off buying good binoculars. How do I spot them? We will use this telescope as an example : (Please note that I do not condemn National Geographic/Bresser as bad brands, just using this as an example) 1 - Advertising magnification(18X-60X) This is an instant red flag. Any serious astronomy brand NEVER advertises magnification. Although it is important, this is not how we measure a telescope's power. Every telescope has a limit in magnification, beyond that objects look fuzzy and very blurry. 2 - Small/Cheap Mounts This is a bit harder to spot, but usually the mount shown is small and made out of cheap materials. It will be uncomfortable to use, as they tend to be very wobbly. Mounts are very important in astronomy, they can make the difference between a good and a bad telescope. 3 - Advertising Views of the telescope(Jupiter/Moon) Again, any serious astronomy brand NEVER advertises these views. Most of the time, they do NOT accurately represent what you can really expect to see with this scope. Here is a picture of the moon as seen by a Celestron Powerseeker 50az: The picture shown in the box art represents more what you could see from a telescope with a much bigger aperture. 4 - Very small aperture Aperture is key.To get to that price point, retailers usually cut corners where they can. One thing you could also avoid is small aperture (below 76mm) in this example, we see 50mm as the main aperture. It is very small and can only be used to see the moon,Jupiter and maybe Saturn. To fully enjoy astronomy, you are better off with at least something like a Celestron Firstscope or an Orion Funscope. I don't like binoculars,which brand can I trust for a starter scope? I would usually recommend looking for telescopes from these brands: - Orion Telescopes - SkyWatcher - Meade -Explore Scientific -Bresser(But not the one demonstrated here) I would have included Celestron in the list, but they have a lot of "Bird Jones"(Cheap telescopes with spherical mirrors/bad optics) type telescopes which are also to be avoided. There we go! this should be enough for you to get a proper beginner telescope, and hopefully kick start a life-long passion for astronomy! Clear Skies!
  4. So I've recently purchased this little gem. It is so good! Surprisingly showing me Venus and Mars in great detail. The scope boasts a 4" aperture with a 400mm focal length(quite short tbh) but gets the job done with messier objects. it has this beautiful red finish which I shouldn't include as a feature but it sure does look gorgeous. Unfortunately it has only seen the sky once due to the bad weather here but the views were worth it.
  5. Observation in the cold?

    Best way I could describe it: just wear the proper clothes and you should be fine. Wind is a major problem tho, so be careful it might just lead to a frustrating night. I've been out when it was like -5 but never went past that. And be sure to wear Gloves. I can't stress this enough
  6. What to get next

    For a dslr, you could get this excellent Canon EOS 1300D - great entrly-level in my opinion http://www.photographyblog.com/reviews/canon_eos_1300d_review/
  7. What to get next

    Depends on where you live,but you could get something like this http://www.astroshop.eu/omegon-2x-barlow-lense-achromatic-1-25-/p,2289
  8. What to get next

    You could buy a filter to make lunar observation more comfortable You could get a solar filter to observe the sun You could get a DSLR to get started in astrophotography You could buy a 2x barlow You could buy a star map and the list goes on and on....
  9. I haven't bought it yet, but I'm surprised - I've seen some decent photos shot with bridge cameras in the past. I'll keep looking
  10. right now I'm with my 3" dob, but I'm going to upgrade to a bigger scope nonetheless. I'm going for everything, whether it be Planetary or DSOs. I don't like to use the second hand market But I can if no other solution comes up, and I don't mind paying 150 euros. But as I browsed I searched for brand new and it came up starting at 999.- . Of course,when I thought of a webcam,it was mainly because I could stack it and get better results. I know these don't produce the best pictures but I thought sacking could help with that. Anyways Thanks for the help! I'll try and search for second hand DSLRs and such and surely I'll find a reasonable deal. Edit : Found a Nikon CoolPix P600 sealed for 300$ // Thanks for everyone who helped me!
  11. Thank you but I don't consider 999$ as cheap It is true I didn't realise but I can't take long exposures with webcams... Anyways any other suggestions that are wallet-friendly?
  12. So up until now I have been doing moderate astrophotography with anything but dedicated equipment. I thought I might step up my game and actually buy a dedicated camera, but I'm not really into the idea of spending upwards of 600$ for a DSLR which I'm basically only going to use for this(Maybe Later) So I thought maybe a webcam could do,like a microsoft lifecam hd-3000 or something like that. Any suggestions for something that doesn't take too much tinkering and is wallet-friendly?
  13. Hello SGL, As a follow up to my previous thread, I did indeed find the objects I was looking for Here's Mars : And Here's Saturn : Of course these Images were edited,Mostly zoomed in. It was very exciting for me to see them for the first time, and now I know how planets look compared to stars in my eyepiece, that is why I failed the last times.... I almost felt like a child getting a birthday present, it's wonderful