Author Topic: Beginner looking for help with planetary and lunar observing telescope  (Read 642 times)

subliliva

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Re: Beginner looking for help with planetary and lunar observing telescope
« Reply #30 on: February 08, 2018, 07:04:01 PM »
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Oh yes .. a mount.An alt-az mount is almost essential for this kind of observation. Forget about goto but digital setting circles can be helpful.
I would definitely consider a go-to mount. Know that if you don't get a go-to mount, you will be burning large amounts of time finding things. Whole nights could go to waste because you couldn't find what you wanted. If you have that kind of time to spare, and sufficient dedication, then yeah forget about go-to.

For me, I've found that the "stars need to align" to have a good night of observing - a clear sky, no Moon, no other life activities, reasonable temps etc. This doesn't happen often, so I can't afford to waste those nights. Go-to is a clutch player in that regard.

Cesar Rojas

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Re: Beginner looking for help with planetary and lunar observing telescope
« Reply #31 on: February 08, 2018, 07:27:36 PM »
Nice! 8x56 Binos are perfect for sweeping the Milky Way or wide field views or the sky. These are a great low power observing tool and always go with me on a night of star gazing. Spend some nights with these and a starfinder app to learn your way around a bit. Soon enough you will get the itch to go deeper and will have a better idea of where your interest lies.

Gandza Startley

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Re: Beginner looking for help with planetary and lunar observing telescope
« Reply #32 on: February 09, 2018, 09:23:25 AM »
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So my husband surprised me with binoculars to start with until we decide on the telescope-Celstron SkyMaster DX 8x56.
It is an excellent way to learn about the sky!
Even though it was cloudy we could see many stars that couldn't be seen with the naked eye.
Tonight was clear and the same thing-the sky just popped with the binoculars!
We used an app to just identify some of what we were seeing-definitely on the 'manual' mode!

Would the same type of experience happen with an SCT or larger refractor telescope?

Observing with binoculars can be super comfortable. Especially if you have a reclining lawn chair or one of those zero gravity chairs. Wide field of view, both eyes are open, and you can just cruise along the night sky. If you wind up with a second pair of binoculars*, grab a green laser pointer so you two can easily point objects to each other. That's one of my favorite ways to view the night sky with friends and family.

As for finding that same level of comfort at a telescope... maybe. Having the right chair would help. Some use adjustable height shop chairs / drummers chairs, others buy or build purpose build astronomy chairs. For me tracking helps (or at least a slow motion control or motor drive on the RA axis) so you can just enjoy the view without continually adjusting the scope, The right eyepiece helps with comfort too. Over the years I found I prefer 20mm of eye relief and large eye lenses, so I started looking into the Orion Stratus / TV Delite types of EPs.

*or 3rd or 4th pair, since in my experience binoculars tend to multiply.