Buying a telescope is a decision that will not disappoint. As a passionate astronomy fan who has quite the collection of telescopes, I can easily tell you that the experience of having your own star analyzing device is amazing. Just imagine how mind-blowing is the idea that you can be able to watch the always awe-inspiring Universe from the comfort of your home! So, because I still remember the difficulties I experienced when I first had to decide what kind of telescope I wanted to buy, today I am sharing with you some tips and tricks about what you should have in mind when buying a beginner’s telescope.
One of the first features you should check is the model’s aperture or how large is the telescope’s front lens is. The reason you have to pay attention to this element is the fact that the size of the lens matters because it controls the quantity of light captured by the telescope. In other words, the size of the aperture reflects on the quality of the view you will have of the objects placed at a great distance; a big lens means more clearly viewed remote objects.
Then, be sure to check the size of the `f-number`. Also known as the focal ratio, or speed of the telescope, this feature controls the magnification capacity of your device. To keep things simple, let me put it this way: if you want a telescope that allows you to see small details on the moon, buy one with a high focal ratio, if you want to have a wide eyepiece view, settle for a model with a small `f-number`.
Stability is the key when making this kind of acquisition! What I mean by this is that a great telescope is that one that has a stable mount. As a result, you will be capable to easily follow moving elements in the sky, such as stars. For greater stability, I suggest you opt for a model with the Equatorial Mount, as it is easier to use. However, if you don’t want to invest too much on this kind of device, an altazimuth mount should work just as well once you get the hang of it. A further detail that you should know is the fact that the models with the altazimuth mount feature are usually lighter. So, if you want to take your new acquisition on stargazing trips, this type of model is probably better fitted for your needs.
Well, I think that this entry covers the basics. Before making your decision try not buy a model that is too expensive. Keep in mind that you are a beginner in the field and that this first telescope that you are buying should just teach you the basics. Have fun shopping!