A telescope is an optical instrument utilized for stargazing, but not only. There are terrestrial models that are widely utilized for surveillance purposes. Such a device makes a great present for someone interested in finding out more about space, in general, but also about phenomena dealing with astrophysics.
This article will tell you about some of the essential factors that you ought to have in mind if you’ve ever thought of purchasing a telescope. There are a wide variety of units available out there, and doing a bit more research before making up your mind is a great idea so as to make sure that you don’t end up spending your precious pennies on something that isn’t worth it.
What do you need it for?
First off, the simplest categorization when it comes to telescopes is that they are either terrestrial or astronomical. Land-viewing units rarely excel if what you want the device for is stargazing. Start by estimating your own needs and preferences and only then move on to the actual features that the product needs to come equipped with.
The aperture is crucial
The main optical component of such an optical device, whether it’s a lens or a mirror has a diameter. This diameter is known as the aperture of the telescope. The bigger the size of the lens or mirror, the greater the amount of light that the telescope is capable of capturing. But why is that important?
More light is synonymous with more clarity, so the bigger the aperture, the better you’re going to see the celestial objects you are interested in visualizing.
Keep in mind that the device will end up being hefty if you want to get a model with the biggest aperture you can afford. Bigger isn’t necessarily better, especially in those situations when what you actually need is a portable telescope.
The magnification shouldn’t be your sole decision-making factor
The clarity of the images you’re going to look at is far more important compared to the magnification. Here’s an analogy, if it might make you better understand the point that we are trying to make.
If you’ve ever used a digital camera before, you probably know that it comes with optical and digital zoom. The optical one is way better than the digital one, which means that the image is fuzzy and grainy once you start using the second.
With telescopes, the magnification is determined by the eyepiece you will utilize. Thus, if you want to make sure that you can use the same device for looking at closer and more distant celestial objects, it might be better to purchase an extra eyepiece than to choose a telescope that comes with powerful magnification right from the beginning.
Refractors, reflectors, catadioptric telescopes, and computerized variants
Each of these comes with advantages and cons, so you’re going to have to assess your requirements. The pros of refractors range from the fact that they have a simple design and as such, they’re easy to use. They can be employed for lunar stargazing, and they’re somewhat rugged.
Reflectors are typically unsuitable for terrestrial applications, but they’re great if what you want to look at distant nebulae and galaxies. Cassegrain telescopes are compact, durable, and versatile. Many of the models available out there are computerized, and telescopes like these ones can be used conveniently and efficiently and without too much effort on the part of the user.
So, which telescope do you need?