For those who are curious about astronomy or nature observation, a telescope can be a great investment. However, it is important to know all the details of these devices before making any purchase, to make sure you get the right one for your needs.
Telescopes are mainly divided into two types, according to their purpose: astronomical or terrestrial. As the name suggests, astronomical telescopes are designed to observe the sky, planets, the moon, constellations, etc., while terrestrial telescopes are used to observe nature, be it landscapes or animals.
Both types have different characteristics in their design, aperture, manufacture and more, which is essential to take into account when choosing which one to use. Generally speaking, what you should be clear about when buying a telescope is what you want to see, and from there, make your decision.
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ASTRONOMICAL AND GROUND-BASED TELESCOPES
As mentioned before, astronomical telescopes and spotting scopes are available on the market. Astronomical telescopes are mainly used to see everything related to space, and are mainly used at night. For this reason, they have large apertures to let light in, to get a better view even in low light.
However, there are more aspects in which they differ. The main one is magnification: that tool that allows us to see things more closely. Naturally, we are much closer to wild animals than to stellar bodies. Therefore, astronomical telescopes are distinguished by their high magnification.
Another differentiating factor between the two is the ease of transport. As a rule, terrestrial telescopes are much lighter and easier to move. This makes them more practical for wildlife observation.
On the other hand, terrestrial telescopes tend to be more versatile because some of them can also be used to observe planets, although not with the same quality as astronomical telescopes.
This is the opposite of the other type, which due to its general characteristics will not provide you with a good experience when observing nature.
ASPECTS TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT AND MODEL RECOMMENDATIONS
LET’S TALK ABOUT MONEY
Although there are quite expensive telescopes, you can also get excellent quality for a good price. Of course, this point conditions in some cases the quality of the telescope you can find tukif.
Regarding this point, the aperture is one of the key factors. The larger the aperture, the better the quality… and that will come with a much higher price. Ideally, look for the largest aperture within your budget.
However, if you are a beginner, the minimum should be 70-80mm, while a more professional one is 150mm to 300mm.
IF YOU ARE ALREADY A PRO, TAKE THIS INTO ACCOUNT
In this case, you must also decide whether you want a refractor, reflector or catadioptric telescope. The latter are the ones that use both lenses and mirrors, so they generate a much sharper image, but they tend to be the most expensive.
With refracting telescopes, which use lenses to transmit light, you can see close objects (both terrestrial and in the sky, e.g. moon and planets). They are very easy to use, and require no maintenance. Reflectors, which are for viewing distant, deep-sky objects, use mirrors, and do require more maintenance. However, they are usually cheaper.
When buying an astronomical telescope, it is also important to consider a finder, which is a device that helps to search for planets or stars. In that sense, usability is important, i.e. how easily the telescope can be mounted, among other things. Also, an astronomical telescope generally does not need much movement, but a terrestrial telescope should be light and handy to move.
THE BRAND DOES MATTER
Among the astronomical telescopes for beginners that we recommend are: Astronomico Upchase, TNTY telescope, which is ideal for children and young people; the Bresser Solarix, which comes with a solar filter; Seben Star Sheriff, which is more professional. While among the most recommended spotting scopes are: Gosky 20-60×80, Celestron Ultima 65, Svbony SV28 and Vanguard Endeavor HD 65A.
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