Which telescope

the_rover Posts: 402
edited January 2019 in The cake stop

I fancy buying a telescope, not to perv the lady over the road but because I’m a bit of a nerd!

I’m going to spend up to £150ish which I know is only going to get me a fairly basic one but I was wondering if anyone on here had any recommendations?

Cheers Stuart.


  • cougie
    cougie Posts: 22,512
    Look up @virtualastro on Twitter. He advises well on telescopes and binoculars. I bought some great binoculars on his advice. The moon is fascinating.

    https://www.meteorwatch.org/equipment/b ... telescope/
  • webboo
    webboo Posts: 6,087
    edited December 2018
    This was recommended on UKBouldering another forum where I lurk.
    Skywatchers Hertage 130p flexitube Dobsonian telescope.
    The guy who recommended it spends his life looking at stars and lecturing on them. Someone took his advise and was suitably impressed.
    However this just what I read, so I no personal knowledge of the above.
    http://ukbouldering.com/board/index.php ... 1063.0html
    This is the link to thread if it works.
  • capt_slog
    capt_slog Posts: 3,943
    The usual advice is make sure you get a good mount. No matter how good the optics are, it all becomes a pain in the bum if you can't position the tube correctly, easily and with some precision. The mount is where a lot of cheap scopes fall down, (and sometimes over!). Look for an equitorial mount, a bit confusing at first to set up, but means you only have to track using one screw once you have the object in the field of view.

    Then you have to choose between refractor or reflector (lenses or mirrors). The idea is to get as wide an aperture as you can afford, to get the most light in, and this usually means that a reflector is the best in terms of bang for buck.

    BTW, most of the astronomers on TV advising people who want to dabble, recommend a good pair of binoculars.

    The older I get, the better I was.

  • laurentian
    laurentian Posts: 2,379
    I was looking into this a few years ago. At the time I had a chap working for me whose father was a very accomplished and respected astronomer (big mates with Patrick Moore among others and curator of the Sussex Observatory). I asked said chap to ask his Dad about the the telescope I was looking at buying (around the same price at £150 but it was 12+ years ago) and the advice that came back was twofold:

    1) Spend three times as much and get ten times the telescope
    2) Get something that's easily portable. Unless you are lucky enough to live in a truly dark site, you'll need to take it places

    He recommended a Meade ETX 90 - just had a look and this is still a model that is available.
    Wilier Izoard XP
  • Thanks for the replies, all good information, I was looking at the skywatchers as well.

    I should have said, that it does need to be easily transportable as we go camping and I’d like to use it then as well.

    Thanks again.

    Cheers Stuart.
  • awavey
    awavey Posts: 2,368
    my advice has always been, buy a decent pair of binoculars first,as you can use them for aviation/maritime/wildlife etc , a telescope can only be used for stargazing, so only think about a telescope after youve decided you really enjoy astronomy because more often than not telescopes end up as the proverbial bike left in a shed, as you start finding the whole setup becomes a faff and its cold outside this time of year which is the best viewing time, yet half the time the UK weather doesnt cooperate, or you are stuffed by light pollution, and actually the stars/galaxies and planets dont really alter that much over time
  • I agree with awavey. I bought a celestron reflector telescope a few years ago. Initially it was great. Although a faff to set up I was soon looking at the moons of jupiter and such wonders but once you've seen what you can see with the quality of telescope you've got then it all becomes a bit boring. That's when you decide whether you want to take it further or not which can only be achieved by spending more and more money. My telescope now? Up in the attic, hasn't been used for a couple of years. When I initially researched the pros and cons of getting a telescope a lot of people recommended a really good quality pair of binoculars instead, which has already been alluded to throughout this thread. That way you could still use them for other things when the attraction of the night sky wears off.
  • Thanks again for the replies, I’m swayed towards some quality binocs now as I think I’ll get more use out of them and the review sites back up what’s been said here.

    Cheers Stuart.
  • Akirasho
    Akirasho Posts: 1,892
    I have no experience with this but am seriously considering one early next year.

    https://shop.astronomerswithoutborders. ... -telescope
  • I’ve ordered some Celestron SkyMaster 15X70 Binoculars which I’m collecting tomorrow and will look for a tripod over Xmas.
    I’ll look to upgrade to a decent telescope “ if “ it becomes my thing!

  • Good choice. If, incidentally, you do decide to go down the perv route, then I think you'll find that binoculars are so much easier to handle....err...that's what I heard anyway!
  • Be careful where you buy. A friend of mine got seriously ripped off by a shop

    They obviously saw him coming a mile away.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Be careful where you buy. A friend of mine got seriously ripped off by a shop

    They obviously saw him coming a mile away.