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Hello im new to this site and i have a question, what kind of telescope would you recommend for a first time buyer? i have searched loads of sites but cant seem to find one that would be suitable for me. i found this one that i like, can anyone tell me whether it is good or not,

Sky-Watcher Explorer-200P 8" Parabolic Newtonian Reflector Telescope

or would this one be appropriate for me?

http://www.green-witch.com/acatalog/info_OV_10709.html

i really appreciate anyone who can help me here. :hello2:

Edited by samantha25
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Hello again, I've only heard good things about these scopes - never used one though. I knoe the choice can be bewildering, think about what you want to observe, your budget and your storage space, does it need to be portable?

Take your time to choose as it's easy to buy too hastily.

Clear skies.

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hello samantha welcome to sgl of the 2 scopes you have flagged the 200p is the better scope because it is bigger this scope is also available on a dobsonian base which is not only much cheaper but many beginners find them easier to use Homepage - Skywatcher Skyliner 200P Dobsonian the disadvantage of the 200p is that its less portable than the 1145p. To be fair the best scope is the one you use most. If you have to carry your scope a distance portabilty may be an issue. but visually the 200p is tjhe better. some people find the dob mount more imtuitive and at £285 is significantly cheaper if you wish to get into photography, you cuold always buy tripod and mount seperately because neither of those mounts is good enough for photography hope that helps if it doesn't let us know how you intend to use it eg where from. what you hope to see, if you intend to travel with it, or if you intend to photograph through it. all of this info will give people a better idea of what may be a suitable scope for you. but so far thebest scope of the 2 you have chosen is the 200p but I would have it on a dob base rather than a eq mount. hope this helps

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Hi there! I have the Skyhawk 1145P but on the synscan mount and its a fab little scope, and even got a good view of Saturn using a 5mm BST Explorer eyepiece. It's a compact scope but I've owned mine now for about 2 months and am wondering whether to get a Dob...

End of the day if space is an issue then this should serve you well, if not then treat yourself to something with more light grab.

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Hi Samantha. If it was my choice I would go for the 200P. It's nearly double the aperture of the 1145 and has a sensible mount that I think will last you quite a while. The EQ-5 is a good mount and, I think, is light enough to be quite portable. Ok it's a bit more expensive but IMHO it's worth it.

I have a couple of newts - one 12" (305) and an 8" (200). I use the 8" mainly for imaging but the views through it are astounding.

Also the 200P can be found at FLO (top of the page) for a few quid less. You can click this link which will take you straight there.

Hope this helps. :hello2:

Mark

Edited by mark7331
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ok thanks for your help guys, i will be using it in my back garden, or on the hills behind my house, im not really fussy if it is portable or not. but ive heard great comments about the 200P so i might look into that more.

Edited by samantha25
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For the aperture, I would go for the explorer 200P and yes in the dobsonian format it would be a lot cheaper. However, the one attraction about the EQ5 equatorial mount is that you can always upgrade it by adding a RA motor that will assist in tracking an object once you've found it. This is important because at high magnifications the object will move across the eyepiece very quickly and makes optimizing fine focusing a little more tricky.

The option in the future of being able to attach a motor will not only help secure the object in the eyepiece, but also enables you have a break from the scope to look at star maps etc without having to babysit the object and of course will help you share the view with friends and family. Nothing worse than aunt Maude getting hold of the scope with the fateful words, "....oh dear, it seems to have slipped out of view!":D

Clear skies

James

P.S I would recommned that you buy your scope from FLO or any other reputable astronomy dealer because you will always need advice and it is better to ask retailers who are also astronomers themselves. Service is as important as the scope.

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P.S I would recommned that you buy your scope from FLO or any other reputable astronomy dealer because you will always need advice and it is better to ask retailers who are also astronomers themselves. Service is as important as the scope.

Hi Samantha - couldn't agree more with what James has put.

I have the 200 P - am really enjoying it.

Put it into the 3 parts (tube, mount, weights), you can reasonably move it.

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Seeing that you are in Luton this may be of some interest:

LDAS PUBLIC STAR PARTY on April 9 from 7:30pm

LDAS being Letchworth and District Astronomy Society.

They meet at Standalone Farm.

Thinking that it seems reasonably close and if the weather holds then it may be a chance to peer through a few scopes and get information.

There is (was) a club in Luton, just not sure of the name any longer. May be an alternative for the future, but this is probably the last public night for a while as the nights start to remian ligher for too long from now on.

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Hi Sam - another vote for the 200P OTA. How you mount it (EQ or Alt/Az/ Dob) is a matter of personal choice and what you intend to do with it. But as a first scope - you will be spolied (nay totally ruined) with a 200P.

Word of advice - get to a scope shop at the weekend and have a good look at how big these things are. Two boxes the size of a wardrobe turning up on your doorstep after placing the order often takes newbies by surprise lol

You may be interested in a day visit to a star party for a look around. Loads of scopes of all types and sizes, astronomy talks, trade stands, boot sales etc all very interesting.

There are two major ones over the end of the month - SGL6 in Hereford, and Kelling Heath in Norfolk. It's a day out for the whole familly and if you hang around after dark you'll find most folk only to happy to give you a look through their scope and offer advice. PM me for details of either event if you're interested :hello2:

Edited by brantuk
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thanks everyone, have jus checked and there is a club in luton, not far from me, will have to try and get there, and you do get a chance to look through some scopes, so i will be able to have a go and see what kind of scope would be comfortable for me. but trying to find a dealer in my area is not that easy. but i will not give up :-)

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Interested in the Letchworth club. I'm also a member of Bedford Astronomical Society, but I spend nearly all of my time now at my girlfriends in Ashwell, so I'd be interested in coming along......

(If anyone from Bedford is reading, don't worry, you haven't lost me yet!)

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+1 for FLO as a great dealer. I have recently had an issue with a mount bought from them and they have been fantastic.

As someone who didn't look at size before buying I thoroughly recommend you do as has been advised in other posts.

Unless you intend to mount the scope permanently make sure you can lift it, put it together and take it apart before you shell out the cash.

I bought a 300p without looking at it and though it is in the usable weight range it is a BIG UN and I use it less because of that. I also have a 70mm refractor which I take out when the weather is not so great.

A word of caution on dobsonian mounts, if you have any thoughts of astro photography these are not the best option.

GOOD LUCK

One look at Saturn through a 200mm scope and you will know you did the right thing.

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I have owned the Skywatcher 130p on a GOTO mount for about 3 months now as my second scope up from a cheapo refractor, and I'm beyond impressed with it. Its a few sreps down from the 200 you're looking at but will be half the price which might suit you better if you're just starting off. I've seen amazing views of Jupiter and its largest moons, Saturn and its rings, even deep space awesomeness like galaxies, star clusters and nebula, The 200 will offer even better views but for 250 quid, I'd recommend the 130p GOTO to anyone. The GOTO mount is handy at helping find the trickier objects too.

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thanks again, i would really love to see Titan, that is my favorite, would i be able to see that with a 200P ? i love Saturn and Titan, and Betelgeuse.

I know i would be able to see Betelgeuse with ease and Saturn too, but im not sure about Titan.

Edited by samantha25
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thanks again, i would really love to see Titan, that is my favorite, would i be able to see that with a 200P ? i love Saturn and Titan, and Betelgeuse.

I know i would be able to see Betelgeuse with ease and

Saturn too, but im not sure about Titan.

yes you should see titan no problem

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Titan is magnitude 8 - you can see it with a 75mm scope in good conditions. It's an easy target in a100mm scope like mine. I guess a larger scope might show a bit of orange color but it will always look like a dot.

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I've had my 130 for about six weeks now and it was seeing the moons that blew me away.

Seeing four in a line around Jupiter is still my favourite thing I have seen. Saw Titan the other night too and that was awesome because I've seen the progs on what it's like.

Being able to see it and imagine what's going on there as I do was pretty awe-inspiring.

If you are anything like me you are gonna have an exciting few months ahoy :-)

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Over the past couple of nights I havr been amazed to see not just Titan but also other smaller fainter moons of Saturn - Tethys, Dione, and even Iapetus. With a 130P these should be much easier to see, especially at higher magnifications.

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Hi Samantha,

A warm welcom to SGL. I can vouch for the SW Skyliner 200p, i had mine in December. Its been superb, had great views of Jupiter could see lots of detail including GRS and and both North and South belts. All moons were easily visible too. Also had great views of Saturn, was lucky enough to see the Cassinin division last week for the first time, Titan isnt a problem either!..I chose this scope after weeks and weeks of research. Wanted a scope purely for observation, never going to get into the imaging side of things. Very good scope for finding Galaxies and Nebula too. Good luck with your choice, hope this helps..:hello2:

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