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Ladies and gentleman, 

Thank you for helping me in advance. 

As a kid I've always been fascinated with the sky and what was in it. The nights sky is filled with beautiful stars and nebulae and I want to see them for myself and be amazed how insignificant we really are compared to this vast open space. So let me adress some of the key points that I want for a first scope.

1. Around €1000

2. Big aperture, I want to see as much as possible and as far as possible while not losing a clear image

3. I would like to have a push to or go to system

4. Beginner friendly

5. Size is not a problem 

8. I prefer reflectors since it seems they give more aperture for the money but if you know a better scope that sees more with less aperture let me know :)

9. I have a Canon 550D and maybe I could use this for a bit of astrophotography. This is last on the list tho and can be scrapped if the first 3 points aren't met

Of course build quality is very important when making my choice so keep that in mind as well.

I'm looking forward to you guys advice. 

 Happy stargazing and clear skies! 

Edited by Wavseeker
Adding info

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Welcome to SGL, I can assure you this scope will tick all your boxes and provide you with years upon years of night sky amazement, This is a goto model, considering your budget you may also want to consider the same scope but without the goto feature, this will leave you with money to spare for some more eyepieces. Its a tossup between goto and affording some nice eyepieces which WILL greatly enhance your experience. Having said that, if you were to spring for the goto model then save up and get a few eyepieces one at a time then its a win win situation for you, either way, there are many on this forum who have the same scope and can certainly attest to their versatility and quality. From an aperture for dollar ratio POV, you just cant beat a Dobsonian.

These Skywatcher flex tube scopes are built well, perform, and are easy to use, I have used my friends 250P many times and if I didn't already have a dob, I wouldn't hesitate on one frankly.

 https://www.firstlightoptics.com/dobsonians/skywatcher-skyliner-250px-flextube-goto.html

Edited by Sunshine

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Hi, Wavseeker, and welcome to SGL.

A dob is a good choice for light grasp. Depending on your LP, you will need a light shield (of some sort) to go round the extended tube. The only catch is that you will need to scrap #9 - dobs are next to useless for AP.

If possible, I would advise you to see this sort of scope "in the flesh" before you purchase. Are there any astro societies near you? If so, you may well have the option to visit an observing evening and have the chance to "try before you buy". I once owned a 250mm dob that (in my circumstances) was totally unsuitable.

Enjoy the journey.

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My suggestion would be to advance your requirements in stages. For example, if Astro Photography is
a definite goal of yours, then I would first concentrate on a quality mount for the telescope you will
attach to there  are several good candidates, and you may wish to  do some research to select a suitable 
unit for your budget. AP does not come cheap unfortunately, but the basis of success is always  the Equatorial Mount.
Have a browse of First Light Optics  website, it could help in deciding which way to go.
A Small Apo chromatic Refractor would be desirable as a start, I say small, but brilliant  Deep Sky results are attainable with these instruments.
As their size increase, so does the price, which is why I suggest small to begin with, as your budget would not cover the
suggestions I give here. However, mount requirement would be the priority.
However, please wait for other suggestions, there will be some more attractive to you I reckon.

Goop luck in  your search. it's a great field to  enter into.

Ron.

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First off thank you so much for these responses. I did some research myself and it kinda confirms what I found. You cannot beat a dobsonian in price per aperture.

I found this beauty online and in terms of money it's a little bit less than that skywatcher. How does orion compare to skywatcher? Are they the same quality? 

https://www.astroshop.eu/telescopes/orion-dobson-telescope-n-254-1200-skyquest-xt10i-intelliscope-dob/p,33295

I will also look at that website first light optics. 

Btw I'm from Belgium maybe that plays a role in choosing my online shop? 

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21 minutes ago, Wavseeker said:

I found this beauty online and in terms of money it's a little bit less than that skywatcher. How does orion compare to skywatcher? Are they the same quality

Both Orion (USA) and Skywatcher are Synta brands. The two telescopes are probably built at the same factory and will be the same quality. You should note that the Orion branded version is a push to scope, whilst the Skywatcher branded one is a full go to scope. 

With regards the astrophotography, this has wildly different requirements and will require a different set up to visual observing (a Dobsonian is not suitable). It is also not a simple point and click exercise like daytime photography. The book "Making every photon count" is the first purchase you should buy if this is a serious consideration. 

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One possible benefit of a solid tube dob over a flexi tube one is, if you decide to get into AP, you would be able to use the tube on a decent EQ mount - although a big reflector may not be the best AP instrument!

+1 for MEPC

Edited by Demonperformer

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hmmm interesting. if i abandon AF completely and just focus on seeing as much as i can and as deep into the sky as i can with my eyes, what scope should i get? push to being the minimum requirement since go to systems are more expensive.

would the orion skyquest xt10i be the best option or are there scopes with push to systems that can see deeper into the nights skies?

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7 hours ago, Wavseeker said:

First off thank you so much for these responses. I did some research myself and it kinda confirms what I found. You cannot beat a dobsonian in price per aperture.

I found this beauty online and in terms of money it's a little bit less than that skywatcher. How does orion compare to skywatcher? Are they the same quality? 

https://www.astroshop.eu/telescopes/orion-dobson-telescope-n-254-1200-skyquest-xt10i-intelliscope-dob/p,33295

I will also look at that website first light optics. 

Btw I'm from Belgium maybe that plays a role in choosing my online shop? 

Note that this is a Push to and not a GoTo, a goto track the object, while a Push to shows vertical and horizontal arrows pointing to the object for you to find.

 

For your budget I would go for the scope in the below quote (250 Dob) , or maybe the 200 Dob with savings for other accessories. If this is your first scope, visit a shop or local society to try. Maybe consider a small scope to try before spending this budget.

 

Best of luck

15 hours ago, Sunshine said:

Welcome to SGL, I can assure you this scope will tick all your boxes and provide you with years upon years of night sky amazement, This is a goto model, considering your budget you may also want to consider the same scope but without the goto feature, this will leave you with money to spare for some more eyepieces. Its a tossup between goto and affording some nice eyepieces which WILL greatly enhance your experience. Having said that, if you were to spring for the goto model then save up and get a few eyepieces one at a time then its a win win situation for you, either way, there are many on this forum who have the same scope and can certainly attest to their versatility and quality. From an aperture for dollar ratio POV, you just cant beat a Dobsonian.

These Skywatcher flex tube scopes are built well, perform, and are easy to use, I have used my friends 250P many times and if I didn't already have a dob, I wouldn't hesitate on one frankly.

 https://www.firstlightoptics.com/dobsonians/skywatcher-skyliner-250px-flextube-goto.html

 

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is there alot of difference between the xt8 and the xt10 in terms of what you see?

ive asked this question to a salesperson at astroshop.eu and he told me this "no, there is not that much difference, and the 10 inch is not so easy to handle as the 8 inch."

but i cant seem to choose between push to or a Go To system

im either buying this one

https://www.astroshop.eu/telescopes/orion-dobson-telescope-n-254-1200-skyquest-xt10i-intelliscope-dob/p,33295

or this one

https://www.astroshop.eu/telescopes/orion-dobson-telescope-n-203-1200-skyquest-xt8g-dob-goto/p,20126

also i want to point out that there is a 1:10 fine movement focuser on the XT8 and not on the XT10. does this matter alot?

Edited by Wavseeker

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A 10 (250mm) has about 50% more light grasp than an 8 (200mm). The greater the light-grasp, the brighter an object will appear at the same magnification. Bright is good (think about reading a newspaper as it starts to get dark - when it is light you can see the small print, as it gets dark you can only read bigger and bigger print) as you will see more detail.

Both of the scopes you link to are GOTO models, which will make finding an object easy, but are more expensive than the standard dob models. Do you want to just observe, or is "hunting down" your object part of the fun for you? If the former, GOTO is the way to go, if the latter go for a standard dob model.

A 1:10 focusser makes sooo much difference. I didn't believe how much easier it was to achieve proper focus until I upgraded to one. But this can be upgraded later if you don't have one initially.

I really would reiterate the advice given above that you track down a local astro society and have a look through various options before you buy.

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The xt10i that I linked is a push to model. So it won't track like a goto model.

If I buy the goto Xt8 I will spend more money on a power supply while also giving up a bigger aperture. But I can track objects so astrophotography is an option and people say on alot of forums it's amazing to use. Also it has the 1:10 fine tune. 

If I choose for the xt10 I get a push to system and bigger aperture but I can't track anymore so astrophotography is going to be limited. It's cheaper because I don't need an expensive powersource. No 1:10 fine tune. 

It's a difficult choice

I'm going to my local astronomy club next week

Edited by Wavseeker

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3 hours ago, Wavseeker said:

But I can track objects so astrophotography is an option

You should get expert advice about that. I'd say that the OTA is not first choice for astrophotography (except maybe planetary astrophotography), and a mount designed with visual use in mind may turn out to be horrid when used for imaging.  Like the Celestron SE mount - fine for visual use,  useless or a pain for imaging.  Serious imagers use German equatorial mounts - big, heavy and expensive ones.

I usually advise beginners to start with a small scope of good quality, rather than trying to buy their ultimate scope. That way, if matters turn out different from what you expected, (e.g you can't get on with GoTo at all) or your interests turn to a different area of astronomy, you have not spent too much money and you were intending to upgrade the first instrument anyway...

Edited by Cosmic Geoff
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To be fairly honest I just want to see as deep as possible and I'm more than happy to leave AP behind. The choice is between the ones I mentioned above I guess. Will a push to give me as much pleasure as a go to system? 

Edited by Wavseeker

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24 minutes ago, Wavseeker said:

To be fairly honest I just want to see as deep as possible and I'm more than happy to leave AP behind. The choice is between the ones I mentioned above I guess. Will a push to give me as much pleasure as a go to system? 

if i want the deepest view for my money, should i go with a pushto, Goto or even without a pushto system and navigate with a starmap?

like this one

https://www.astroshop.eu/telescopes/orion-dobson-telescope-n-254-1200-skyquest-xt10-plus-dob/p,55405

Edited by Wavseeker

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10 minutes ago, Wavseeker said:

if i want the deepest view for my money, should i go with a pushto or even without a pushto system and navigate with a starmap?

That's a personal choice. And if you had experience of using one of the systems you'd know if it was what you wanted or not.  Some people like relying on a star-map, others consider this an annoying and frustrating waste of valuable observing time.

Edited by Cosmic Geoff

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hmm the only way to find out is to go to a store and try it out for myself then.

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10 hours ago, Wavseeker said:

hmm the only way to find out is to go to a store and try it out for myself then.

No, the only way is to try it out under the stars while you try to find your target. I would go nuts without GoTo, but I'm also an imager.

For AP, the setups you are looking will only work for planetary. Don't even begin to think about using them for deep sky objects if you want to retain your sanity.

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After reading your latest comments, I can assume you are facing 2 dilemmas:

1. is 10 inch v 8 Inch,

2. having a classical, push to , push to + or a GoTo.

 

I just faced it a week ago and I took my decision. it will come down to the following:

For choosing between 8 inch v 10, it'll come down to portability and your ability to carry the 10 inch easily or sticking to the easier 8 inch , the best telescope is the one you most use. As for the technical difference in terms of light gathering, theoretically the 10 inch collects 56% more, yet a lot of members report that the difference is noticeable only for deep sky and faint objects. Not to mention that the 10 inch is a fast focal ratio (F4.7) so will require better eyepieces (EP), while the 8 inch (F6) is more forgiving on EPs, though some members mentioned that you can always mask the 10 inch down. Also collimation is more required in the 10 inch.

As for the guiding systems, it's purely personal, if you think you will enjoy learning your way around the sky with maps, you can always save up and choose the manual Dobs, however if you feel that you want to make life easier to get you into this hobby, then you may choose between the three types (Push to, Push + and GoTo)

A push to may help you with learning your way around the sky, since it's partly manual. A Push plus requires the use of your phone and is cheaper than a GoTo. A GoTo is fully automated and has the advantage of tracking (not suitable for AP).

these are the links for the posts that helped me decide:

 

 

 

I hope this helps when deciding what to buy. Good Luck

Edited by PlanetGazer

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i think im going for the XT10i based on following statements

- biggest aperture

- push to system will help me learn the sky so ideal for beginners (no need for external power source and cheaper)

- i can always spend more money on eyepieces

- i can easily lift 24 kilos if my scope is in a bag

- i can always upgrade to a 1:10 ratio focus

https://www.astromarket.org/cart

anything else i need to start stargazing?

Edited by Wavseeker

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I think you will enjoys the views you get with it.

There are no doubt people who will advise you to stock up with extra eyepieces (and other things), but I would advise patience. One of the greatest skills you can develop is to learn to "see" rather than just "look at". This takes time and patience. The longer you observe an object at the eyepiece, the more you will see. Start with the EPs provided and upgrade when you know why you are doing it. What do you expect your new purchase to achieve that your current gear doesn't? If you don't have an answer to that question, you can find yourself spending a lot of money to very little advantage (I speak as one who did exactly that!).

The only other thing you really need are clear skies (yeah, like that's going to happen!) and a dark site from which to observe. One thing you might find useful, however, is a planisphere. Some (including me) find this easier than a standard star atlas. Dial in the date and time, hold it over your head oriented to the north, and it matches the sky perfectly.

You are in for some fun nights with that scope ... enjoy!

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4 hours ago, Demonperformer said:

I think you will enjoys the views you get with it.

There are no doubt people who will advise you to stock up with extra eyepieces (and other things), but I would advise patience. One of the greatest skills you can develop is to learn to "see" rather than just "look at". This takes time and patience. The longer you observe an object at the eyepiece, the more you will see. Start with the EPs provided and upgrade when you know why you are doing it. What do you expect your new purchase to achieve that your current gear doesn't? If you don't have an answer to that question, you can find yourself spending a lot of money to very little advantage (I speak as one who did exactly that!).

The only other thing you really need are clear skies (yeah, like that's going to happen!) and a dark site from which to observe. One thing you might find useful, however, is a planisphere. Some (including me) find this easier than a standard star atlas. Dial in the date and time, hold it over your head oriented to the north, and it matches the sky perfectly.

You are in for some fun nights with that scope ... enjoy!

Very good advice! Couldn't agree more!

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7 hours ago, Demonperformer said:

I think you will enjoys the views you get with it.

There are no doubt people who will advise you to stock up with extra eyepieces (and other things), but I would advise patience. One of the greatest skills you can develop is to learn to "see" rather than just "look at". This takes time and patience. The longer you observe an object at the eyepiece, the more you will see. Start with the EPs provided and upgrade when you know why you are doing it. What do you expect your new purchase to achieve that your current gear doesn't? If you don't have an answer to that question, you can find yourself spending a lot of money to very little advantage (I speak as one who did exactly that!).

The only other thing you really need are clear skies (yeah, like that's going to happen!) and a dark site from which to observe. One thing you might find useful, however, is a planisphere. Some (including me) find this easier than a standard star atlas. Dial in the date and time, hold it over your head oriented to the north, and it matches the sky perfectly.

You are in for some fun nights with that scope ... enjoy!

exactly my thoughts :) maybe a barlow lense might be useful or a laser collimator but ill see what i get with the telescope and go from there :)

a planishere i already have on my phone called skysafari so i can search up any DSO or planet and its location :)

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