View Full Version : Asking for a good telescope

Angelic Soska
2008-Mar-16, 08:51 PM
it is really wonderful to find such an amazing website. im new here and my name is Sara. im interested in Astronomy but i cant really find a good telescope and the special equipments to watch the wonders of the space, i dont have any experience in this, any help please???

2008-Mar-16, 10:05 PM
This will get moved to the equipment section by the moderator.

First get started with 10x50 binoculars and a good book and charts for them. That way you can learn the sky. Until you do the telescope is mostly useless as you don't know where to point it or what it can and can't do.

In the equipment section read Dave's sticky note (2nd from the top) about binocular astronomy for help here.

Next I'd normally say to look up your local astronomy club. There is one listed for Dubai but its website seems far more interested in fanatic religious causes than astronomy so I'm not sure how useful it is. Check it out if you wish.

Dubai Astronomy Group
P.O.Box:692, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Hasan Ahmad Al Hariri
Phone # 97150 6246172
Email hasan@dubaiastronomy.com
URL http://www.dubaiastronomy.com
They claim 500 members. I much prefer smaller clubs but that's all I see listed for your town. Two small ones apparently exist in Abu Dhabi

If it really is a useful club they'll hold star parties where you can learn about telescopes first hand (far better than reading about them) and and start to get an idea why there are so many different ones and which does what you are most interested in.

There are many threads in that section about getting started. Pay particular attention to the moderator's (Dave Mitsky) links in these threads for good information. That's not to say others don't have good information too, just that without any knowledge you don't know which few (very few) are poor. Once you've digested those then go on to the others.


2008-Mar-16, 10:42 PM
I started with a telescope and am very happy for that decision. 6in Dobsonians are excellent. 8in are better if you have the money.

They are easy to setup and very cheap. Someone can learn so much by using this telescope and then upgrade later on with more confidence and knowledge. My recommendation.

Angelic Soska
2008-Mar-17, 01:20 PM
Thanks alot for the valuable information, Rick..unfortunatly, the Dubai Astronomy Club is not that much helpful, so i'll try to ask my teacher maybe he can help in giving some information about that.

Cross, thanks alot too, i'll try to look for this telescope here in Dubai..the problem is that we have a lack in such field..i'll do my best..


2008-Mar-17, 01:56 PM
Here is a link (http://www.telescope.com/control/product/~category_id=classicdobs/~product_id=09707) to what I would recommend. It is a very good product and with it you can see and learn so much.

Good luck.

Angelic Soska
2008-Mar-17, 04:51 PM
i know it might be a stupid question but can i astropgotograph with the two telescopes you recommended or they are just for observation?

2008-Mar-17, 05:01 PM
Sara, mostly these are for observation with your eyes. I have been successful in taking photos of the moon because it requires short exposures and doesn't move noticeably during that time.

Planets and some comets are almost bright enough to get a good photo. Most other things are out of reach.

If you have more money you can buy an equatorial mount for the same telescope. It is more difficult to setup and learn for beginners. I think you will enjoy much more having the dobsonian mount. I still use mine very often even after 4.5 years.

Angelic Soska
2008-Mar-17, 05:24 PM
yeah, i think that too, specially that i dont know much about telescopes and astrophotography..anyways, the information i got from you is really helpful and i appreciate your efforts..thanks alot


2008-Mar-17, 05:26 PM
you are very welcome.

2008-Mar-17, 07:46 PM
Hi Sara, you definitely need to read this link: http://scopereviews.com/begin.html

A dob is a great beginners scope, and may end up being the only scope you ever own. I started with binocs, then the Orion 8" dob, and have since upgraded to the Orion 10" dob. I have no plans for further upgrades currently.

Dobs make great beginners scopes because they are inexpensive, easy to use and set up, and the dobsonian mount makes them very stable - this is every bit as important as quality optics in a scope. The best optics in the world won't matter if the mount is unstable.

Angelic Soska
2008-Mar-19, 10:35 AM
i think you are right. i will try to look for the Orion 8" dobsonian..but i have another question, if i want to take photographs of what i see through this telescope, is it possible to use a normal camera or there are special kinds of cameras like the CCD?

Dave Mitsky
2008-Mar-19, 12:59 PM
A point and shoot digital or DSLR camera allows one to take afocal photographs of bright celestial objects rather easily through a telescope eyepiece. Astronomical CCD cameras are a whole different ballgame, however.



Dave Mitsky

2008-Mar-19, 07:23 PM
If I were you Sara, I'd forget about astrophotos for a while, as discussed in the link I supplied. Just get to know your scope and the sky, and if you're so inclined, tackle astrophotography later on, perhaps with a dedicated setup.

2008-Mar-19, 07:29 PM
I would make the same recommendation. Astrophotography can be very rewarding, but you should first know what you are looking at.

I had to teach some fellow students how to take photos with a ccd, but they had never used a telescope before. The hard (and most enjoyable) part is learning the sky.

Angelic Soska
2008-Mar-20, 09:23 AM
thanks guys..i believe i'll leave astrophotography till after i get to know the sky and the scope as well..i appreciate your help..
this is a wonderful forum..thanks :clap:

2008-Mar-20, 01:58 PM
Good luck. Tell us what you see!

2008-Mar-21, 05:49 AM
Unfortunately, good as the Orion is, it could be hard to find in Dubai; Orion doesn't ship internationally.

Dave Mitsky
2008-Mar-21, 07:39 AM
The Orion SkyQuest Dobs are manufactured by the Chinese company Synta. Synta sells the Sky-Watcher (http://www.astroshop.de/en/telescopes/skywatcher) line elsewhere. Perhaps one of its vendors ships to Dubai.

Guan Sheng Optical (http://www.gs-telescope.com/content.asp?id=82) in Taiwan is another possible source of an 8" f/6 Dob. They supply Zhumell (http://www.zhumell.com/telescopes.html) and other companies.

Dave Mitsky

2008-Mar-21, 06:30 PM
The Orion SkyQuest Dobs are manufactured by the Chinese company Synta. Synta sells the Sky-Watcher (http://www.astroshop.de/en/telescopes/skywatcher) line elsewhere.


I love the description of the telescopes from the link you provided Dave:

Dobson telescopes by Skywatcher - cannons of light

What kind of paper-work does one need to fill-out to ship cannons?


2008-Mar-21, 08:32 PM
Heck, that's what they ought to call those annoying green lasers some use to point out objects in the sky.

2008-Mar-24, 03:11 PM
Heck, that's what they ought to call those annoying green lasers some use to point out objects in the sky.

they sure work great for pointing.

MANY times I've tried fruitlessly to point to an object in the sky with my hand or broom stick. That laser pointer is my friend.

2008-Mar-24, 07:11 PM
If you have more money you can buy an equatorial mount for the same telescope. It is more difficult to setup and learn for beginners. I think you will enjoy much more having the dobsonian mount. I still use mine very often even after 4.5 years.

I also like the simple Dob mount. All you have to do is give it a small push to follow objects and you can see most of the major objects.

I got my idea from a man named John Dobson who invented this. He has for decades driven a van up and down the west coast of USA with his "sidewalk astronomer" van and just stops, sets up his scope, and shows anyone who shows up sun (in day WITH A SPECIAL FILTER) and nighttime most objects.
I am so impressed how all common folks can greatly enjoy this simple settup without any fancy equipment. Dobson says that the best experience is in "soft warm eyes" looking into the eyepiece.

Madam Captain
2008-Apr-01, 01:08 PM
Hello Sara,

Do you have a local astronomy club in your area? I would recommend joining one so you can meet other amatuer astronomers and get to learn how to use a telescope. You will also be able to see lots of different types of scopes and this will help you decide which one you want to buy. I started out this way and honestly, I had never used a telescope before I joined. The people at my astro club were very helpful and the first scope I ever used was an 8" dob. This also got me very interested in buying my own scope and after using dobs, I bought a 6". I think dobs are the easiest scopes to use and like others in this thread have mentioned, they are easy to assemble and quite cheap.

If you maintain an interest in astronomy, you will probably eventually upgrade to a bigger scope, as I have done. I recently purchased a 10" Meade Lightbridge and I love it! I have to agree with the other posters here, leave astrophotography for a while because its a bit complicated. You need special equipment, suitable optics, appropriate mounts etc - although I used my ordinary digital camera and took photos of the moon through my 6" dob. It was a challenge but I managed to get some superb photos of the moon!! Its a good idea to get to know the sky first and how to use a telescope.