View Full Version : Question: Whatís the Best Beginner Telescope?

2011-Sep-19, 09:20 PM
We get this question the time. People want to get into astronomy, and they want to get their first telescope. So, to all you experienced astronomers reading Universe Today, what do you suggest people consider for their first starting telescope? We’ve heard lots of horror stories about bad quality department store telescopes, so where should [...]

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2011-Sep-19, 11:16 PM
This should be required reading for anyone considering a telescope: http://scopereviews.com/begin.html

Start out by just getting a star wheel--one that shows the consellations, get outside, and learn the sky. A light polluted site isn't bad for starters because only the brighter stars will be visible, which are usualy the stars that are members of constellations.

Then join a club and/or get out to a star party. Ask lots of questions. Get a decent pair of binoculars as well.

The very worst thing a beginner can do is run into a dept. store and buy the first '500x telescope' they see in a pretty box with cool pictures on it. That's a sure way to failure.

Personally, IMO a 6 or 8 inch dobsonian is the 'best' beginner scope because they're inexpensive, provide enough aperature to show a wide variety of objects, and have an inherently stable mount--the most important aspect of a scope IMO. The best optics in the world won't do anything for you if they're attached to an unstable, rickety mount. Some will find that a dob isn't for them, which is fine. The important thing is to learn the sky, join a club, and learn as much as possible so you can make an informed decision on what scope is 'best' for you--BEFORE you buy something.

2011-Sep-20, 04:30 PM
An 8" GoTo scope the best "Bang" for the buck for a beginner. It will shoot the Moon an Sun (with solar filter) perfectly with 6.3 reducer. It will, with the aid of eyepieces show "Visual" details of Planets at the oppositions.It will not! give you a Hubble telescope view the Universe,No scope on Earth will. That's Astrophototagraphy an that's a whole different ball game! An 8" has just enough ampature (with-out a lot weight) An just enough ampature not to disappoint a beginner using there eyeball. The universe is just hand-controler "Tour" away...prices are $1000-$1500 from all different kinds of companies