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What telescope to buy with a £500 budget


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Is this just for visual observations or are you considering doing some imaging?

Peter

Currently just to observe but in the future it would be nice to have the option to do astro photography but that's not a must

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Do you imagine wanting it to be as easy as possible or as straight forward as can be?

Only an eq mount is less straight forward and can place the eyepiece of some telescopes in an awkward position.

Where as a Altaz mount is more plonk and look even if not using anything computerised.

Also computerised mounts need setting up to be able to find stuff so there is always a bit of learning too as you need to align it first each session of use I gather.

There is a thread on imaging with an non EQ mount which might be enough for what you see you might want to do at this stage.

I would keep some budget aside for the other bits and bobs you might want.

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Hello Woodsi and welcome to SGL.

If you want all the bells and whistles of tracking and goto for £500 then you will end up with a small scope.

The goto computer may have thousands of targets in it's database but you will not see them in a small scope.

All astronomical targets are better with larger apertures so you may want to consider getting an 8" Dobsonian first for around £300 and then later adding a computerised goto mount .....

Edited by dweller25
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skywacher 200p on the eq5 mount about £440 ,8inch mirror is really good aperture and you can track and have the option to upgrade to a go to in the future if you wish to and can be used for astrophotographywith DSLR 

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Hello Woodsi and welcome to SGL.

If you want all the bells and whistles of tracking and goto for £500 then you will end up with a small scope.

The goto computer may have thousands of targets in it's database but you will not see them in a small scope.

All astronomical targets are better with larger apertures so you may want to consider getting an 8" Dobsonian first for around £300 and then later adding a computerised goto mo

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I wouldn't touch Amazon with the proverbial.

Go to a proper astro dealer, FLO are better than just about any, cheaper too, and give first class service and advice.

If you have even the slightest inkling that you might get involved with imaging then look to the mount, it's the single most important component in the chain. While you're on the FLO site get yourself a copy of Making Every Photon Count by Steve Richards, here

http://www.firstlightoptics.com/books/making-every-photon-count-steve-richards.html

Read thoroughly and ask yourself again if you want to go down this route. If you do, then regrettably you'll have to forget about dobs, they just don't cut it. A good German equatorial is a must, and a 200P much too big to be starting with, the 130 P-DS is a much better bet on perhaps an EQ5 with GOTO.

Warning! Imaging can be a slippery slope into a money pit!

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Hi Woodsi, I would avoid the toy telescopes that Argos offer and go with FLO, though not sure your second choice is a good one, if you are looking at refractors, go for a full length one and a good aperture, 90mm or more would suit your requirements.

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+1 for Skywatcher 8in reflectors! I LOVE my 200PDS. I can also say with confidence that the Celestron AVX mount is also excellent. Of course, they don't come as a combo package from anywhere I can find but the HEQ5 mount is also highly rated and you can get the 2 together for about £1000:-

http://www.firstlightoptics.com/reflectors/skywatcher-explorer-200pds-heq5-pro.html

I'd also recommend setting some money aside for upgrading your eyepieces as soon as is practical as the one (s) most scopes come with are pretty basic and don't perform that well. Making Every Photon Count is a highly recommended read too...

Hope that helps.

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