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Dodgy scopes


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For some people its all they can afford, and a poor scope is better than no scope, these might not be all that good but should show Luna craters, planets and things like M42, M31 and such, part of me is tempted to get one of these cheap reflectors just to see what it can do

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I'm not so sure Jules.

My nephew had one of the little refractors and called me to try and get something out of it. Even the moon was impossible to see anything more than a fuzzy blob.

It would have put anyone off, and I beleive that the price was about the same as the refractor above.

Luckily I loaned him a skymax127 on an eq1 (not a perfect match but worked ok), I'd like to think that sparked his interest - but that may have been there all along. He is now studying Physics at Cambridge.

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To be fair at least they don't make the usual outrageous claims to magnification and if you don't use the barlow then the supplied EP's are sensible.

TSED70Q, iOptron Smart EQ pro, ASI-120MM, Finepix S5 pro.

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Someone lent us a dodgy scope when we were little. My dad wasn't new to astronomy - they had a large 12 or 15" scope in their garden as kids and he did astronomy at Cambridge, using the observatory many times. He knew the scope was poor but he was there to ground us in what to expect. Seeing sunspots, Jupiter and a few other items fired up a passion which would led me to buy a telescope in 2007. This same dodgy scope went out with is 1999 to see the total eclipse. Not bad for a cheap piece of rubbish! Had we of had no scope at all, I suspect there would be no passion whatsoever. I bugged him throughout my teen years for a better scope, but we never got around to it.

As long as someone is there to guide you and you ignore the sales spiel, seeing something is better than nothing, in my opinion. Yes, there are better scopes out there, but not everyone can afford to spend £150 - 200!

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Nobody in their right mind would pay £250 for a scope slightly better than a Pringles tube.

The Daily Star is ripping off their readers, but who cares as long as they make a profit.

The eBay sellers are great....

A number of them are trying to off load and cut their loses.

Surprised that three of the current listings are moving house!!

One guy only wants £75 for a used model.

I cannot remember seeing so many of the same models for sale on eBay with such a wide price range.

I was wondering if the eyepieces are the 0.965 inch diameter. The 0.965 inch is now a sure sign of inferior quality.

Amazon have them as well


The best comment is from an Amazon customer who reviewed it....

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful

Would you trust a manafacturer...

By Steve J. on 18 Jun 2014

....that doesn't know the difference between a refractor telescope and a reflector?

This telescope is a REFLECTOR (its a Newtonian that uses mirrors). A REFRACTOR uses lenses to bend the light.

One to avoid!

According to the advert ........ This telescope is equally suited to use in the daytime, making it a great option for wildlife enthusiasts and keen birdwatchers as well. .......

What utter Rubbish!!!



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Not seen a Zennox in the flesh but they appeared regularly on home shopping channels a few years ago. I remember them practically bouncing up and down when the presenter walked around them. Didn't seem to bode well, despite the exhortations of the host that this was a top quality brand used by professional astronomers.

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To repeat a comment on CN: these scopes are not the best to start with but are very often where so many do start.

Another way to look on it is Galileo and Newton would have killed for one like either of these and I suspect Messier would have as well.

I have been presented at meeting with similar, maybe even worse. Last time I was sat on damp cold grass trying to get something out of one. I eventually managed and the young lad was immensly happy when he saw the moon. Then I pointed him at other easy bits.

I tend to look upon it that if there is an objective (of some description) at one end and a eyepiece (of some description) at the other then I will try to get an image. And if I cannot then I want to know why.

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My first scope was the Zennox 50x600. It was/is poorly designed, a nightmare to line up, had very poor optics with a rubbish field. The tripod shakes in Plymouth if a car passes by in Exeter. Positives were we got to see banding on Jupiter / moons and Saturn was a tiny speck but visible rings. Here it is...aju9y6en.jpg

My kids got it for me at Xmas with their pocket money and while I probably won't use it again as I upgraded, it won't be junked either. Don't buy one.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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the problem for me is  even spending £69 so much better can be done, I have a Tal 1 115mm in my shed that is superb, eyepieces are a good match and it cost me the princely sum of £43 from fleabay, they are there nearly  all the time and short of it being run over or left open to the rain they are bullet proof.  It is lovelly and crisp on jupiter, and cassini is visable with saturn ,the mount is rock steady and comfy seated, slow motions are smooth etc, etc. 

Edited by LeeB
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At least they don't come with a so-called sun-filter you're supposed to screw into the EP of diagonal. Those invitations to needing a long, white cane are still floating around. Fortunately they tend to shatter if one manages to actually get the "scope" pointed at the sun. Oh - I loved the Amazon ad showing that cheesy "reflector" being advertised as a refractor. Brilliant!

Clear & Dark Skies,


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Back when I first got interested in astronomy, my late Dad got me a 30x40mm scope on a tabletop tripod. Metal tube, slide focuser, no finder. It was good optically, with good views of the Moon, wide doubles, and could show the discs of Jupiter and Venus, and the rings of Saturn (just!). But I wanted more, and got a 50x50mm refractor which was probably as rubbish as these Zennox ones.

Funny thing was, I upgraded the damn thing! Replaced the plate(!) of glass that was the "objective" with a proper 50mm lens from a company called Astro Systems, complete with metal dew cap that fit onto the plastic tube. Replaced the gun site "finder" with a proper 6x30mm finder, modified the diagonal by losing the plastic lensed eyepiece and making an adaptor to accept proper 0.965-inch eyepieces! (remember them anyone?). That telescope, on a friends wooden full height tripod that I modified to take the 50mm tube, did me a good few years along with my friends 60mm refractor, till I got my C8 in 1990! Even got a few reports of Jupiter made by it published in the Society for Popular Astronomy's News Circulars.

Small scopes if well made CAN show the basics. But probably not these ones!

(Aye, aye, 100th post here. Woohoo!)


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I think if you are interested in astronomy, its worth saving up for a good quality scope. When I first joined my local astronomy club, I borrowed scopes from the club so I could figure out which scope I liked, before I bought one. I tried out their 6 " and 8 " dobs and a Schmidt Cassegrain (which was very nice too) but I decided to go for the dob. My first dob was a 6 " Celestron but then I upgraded to a 10 " Meade Lightbridge around 2007. 

Those scopes look like Rubbish, the bigger one looks like it would fall over in a slight breeze. That mount looks cheap and nasty too. 

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