Telescope: Learn all about the best 2021 models
With much appreciation we received you again here. Your journey through knowledge – and purchasing a good product – will now reach the heavenly level. You will be introduced to the star spy, the telescope!
The sky is a mystery in shadows, and equipment like this will allow you to unravel it. If we are hypnotized by starry nights, imagine the satisfaction of seeing a planet in the solar system, or surface of the moon!
Telescopes are equipment for observing the universe, and everything residing in it, with the pleasure of looking at the stars as other people cannot with the naked eye. Interested? Continue reading to know models, types and characteristics.
First, the most important
- There is no telescope in the world that can provide you with images as dazzling as those on television or on specific websites, such as NASA. They are overlays of hundreds, thousands of “photographs” of the same place, “stacked”.
- The main function of a telescope is not to enlarge, but to receive the greatest amount of light. It is because of the luminosity that you will be able to see objects in space, more clearly. Even those invisible to the naked eye!
- The telescope focuses on small points in the vast sky. Allow yourself to use other tools together, such as a celestial map or binoculars, to assist you in positioning.
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Best telescopes: Our recommendations
With the telescope we can observe many things that are impossible with the naked eye. If you are looking for the best models, below we will present some of them so that you have excellent options to choose from.
- Very well rated azimuth refractor telescope
- Easy-to-handle azimuth refractor telescope
- Excellent equatorial telescope
When searching for a telescope, you will find a variety of them available. Despite major aesthetic differences, you need to pay close attention to each one. It is not uncommon for different models to deliver different results in the same application.
In this Guide we will present all the information you need to buy your telescope safely.
What is a telescope?
Observing the night skies is a common practice throughout the terrestrial globe, an infinite extension (the limit is the range of vision) of light sources, where, in addition to what you see, several other stars and hiding are waiting to be observed.
A telescope’s main objective is to help you search for these pieces of the celestial puzzle. With the help of a group of lenses and – sometimes – mirrors, they are able to make you see what was previously invisible to the eyes. Have you ever imagined seeing the planets in the solar system? With a telescope it is possible!
However, the telescope is not the only method of observing the stars. According to the intended experience, you will certainly hear phrases such as “start with binoculars”, and it is not entirely untrue.
There is a wide variety of telescopes on the market, and many are not able to deliver what you imagine after purchase.
It is a true statement, but rest assured. You will end the reading knowing much more about this equipment, and being able to make good choices, according to what you intend to accomplish.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of purchasing a telescope?
Among the main advantages of this star watcher, we can highlight that they serve as an extension of our eyes. What we don’t see with the naked eye, the telescope allows for that view.
You can still change the lenses and adjust the view as you prefer, and need it. But equipment like this also has its disadvantages. They can be heavy and expensive, depending on their range.
Another negative point is that they limit the vision to a circular shape, different from the field of vision that our eyes see. Want to know more? We have prepared more advantages and disadvantages for you to make a comparison.
- Vision capability beyond any other equipment
- They see celestial objects up to 14 ° magnitude (more than 2.7 billion km)
- Allow lens change for viewing adjustments
- Tripod positioning
- Finder allows you to aim accurately
- The greater the capacity, the bigger and heavier they are
- Practical for performing quick movements
- Limited view in circular shape
- Difficulty in random searches due to limited vision
Can a good binocular replace a telescope?
Certainly, when starting this hobby, you will hear from many people “instead of using a telescope, start with a good binocular”.
The reason some people say this is that there are telescopes with low quality lenses on the market, not being recommended for stargazing the way you want to: see beyond what we see with the naked eye.
And, in this comparison, a good binocular will be able to make you see more than the other equipment, at a lower cost and with much greater ease, in a widescreen view.
But, when we leave the surface of the celestial exploration, we begin to see the main reasons for the acquisition of a telescope.
In fact, it is not uncommon for professional astronomers to have, in addition to the telescope, binoculars as an observation companion. The best of location with the best of exploration. Compare the main advantages and disadvantages of choosing a binocular:
- Good light capture
- Greater visual field
- Allow lens change for viewing adjustments
- Relatively low cost
- Good portability due to size and weight
- Use with both eyes at the same time
- Tedious support, since you need to hold
- Weight increase according to reach and precision
- Range limit less than a telescope
What types of telescopes are there?
Let’s learn now about the types of telescopes you can find during your search: Reflector, refractor and composite. Knowing what each one is for is essential for the right choice. Let’s look at each of them.
In practical terms, it is the most sought after type (and with good prices). Its cylinder uses a system of mirrors to reflect and concentrate the light that can be seen, considered the most appropriate for astronomical observations.
As it is a more affordable category, it ends up providing a good amount of options within a certain price range. In this video, published on Victor Goiano’s channel, you can see some images obtained by a reflecting telescope:
However, there is a very specific detail: due to the use of mirrors, the visualized image will be turned upside down, although this is not a problem in astronomical observations, there are optional lenses that correct the condition.
It uses a lens system, without any use of mirroring, focusing the light rays at the bottom of the telescope. A very common and well-known system, applied to most terrestrial telescopes and binoculars.
Want to see how the moon looks at one of these? Jadson Diego posted a demo on his YouTube channel, check out:
An interesting aspect is the fact that the image is not viewed inverted, nor undergoes changes in its coloring, due to the characteristics of the system. For this reason, they are considered more sophisticated than reflectors, with achromatic or apochromatic lens options.
What can also happen in refractors is an effect that is called chromatic aberration, where the light rays undergo changes through the mirror and distort the real colors. There are options that come with the problem fixed, but it’s always good to know.
We know how much tables can help, especially when comparing. And as our goal is to increase the brightness of your knowledge, let’s go to it:
They use mirrors and lenses, in order to combine the best capabilities of each device. They have greater portability and convenience, in their size and magnification ratios, being smaller than reflectors and refractors of the same comparison.
However, even in their best form, they will not have the image as sharp as that of a good reflector with the same opening, due to the characteristics of the device. Situation that will be felt basically in the observation of planets.
High precision equipment and a relatively fragile set, are products that start from a few hundred reais.
In fact, stargazing is not so cheap, but it is not expensive. Many equipment, with the correct maintenance and necessary care, can last for decades.
Good telescopes can be found with prices starting at R $ 100. Others, more professional, can go over R $ 8,000.
Where to buy?
Despite the restriction that some observers have for purchasing the telescope in department stores, you can find excellent products there.
Of course, you need to be careful with some features and specifications, as they are different and provide visualization according to the purpose you have.
An excellent option is the online purchase, allowing the choice and comparison between models in different places of purchase, in addition to safe delivery. Stores like Amazon are great for shopping.
Purchasing criteria: Factors for purchasing telescope models
Excited to see “beyond what you see” in the night sky? You already know a lot about the great spies of the stars, but it is important to also pay attention to the details when buying one.
Significant details, the more demanding your person is, and the more you dive into the subject. When researching a telescope, keep in mind the following:
- Focal distance
Below, we will clarify the importance of observing with one of these criteria.
First clarification is that despite the name, it does not represent the act itself of assembling the telescope. Mounting is the name of the part that connects the telescope to the support tripod, being of two types: azimuth or equatorial.
Also known by the acronym (AZ), it allows the equipment to move in two directions: up-down and right-left. Moving the telescope is necessary to move it according to the location you want to observe.
Not only that, you need to move the telescope as well while making the observation (the earth rotates, right?). Therefore, the assembly serves mainly to correct the viewing point when the star moves.
The handling system is simple and easy to use. With few elements, it combines practicality and ease, being the preferred and most recommended by users of the equipment.
Unlike the previous simple system, the acronym model (EQ) brings with it a set of systems and gears that move simultaneously, in the same directions as the azimuth. So, what’s the advantage?
After finding the star to be observed, just a simple move of the gear to accompany it. Unlike azimuth, this system moves in the same direction as the stars, and not in a straight way.
With motion correction made easy, it is a good option for those who already have some knowledge of astronomy, and want to dedicate as much time as possible looking at the stars, and not at the equipment. Learn more with this explanatory video published on Michel Arruda’s channel:
Key and fundamental aspect for a telescope. Represents the width of the end that will be pointed towards the stars.
As the function of a telescope to capture light and enlarge images, the relationship between aperture, light and image is proportional. That is, the larger the aperture, the more light captured and the image displayed. As long as the lenses are good!
Caution! Never point a telescope at the sun without proper lens protection. By enlarging the image and amplifying the light reception, by pointing a telescope at the sun, you will be enhancing its brightness in a small space. If it is already difficult to look at it naturally, doing so can leave you blind (irreparably).
We can control many things with the lenses, which in several telescopes can be changed to ensure greater magnification, for example, but we do not control focal length.
This name is given for the distance between the eyepiece – the lens where we observe – and the aperture. A telescope with a longer focal length will give you greater magnification.
However, don’t just focus on this information. A telescope works with all its parts at the same time, in a perfect set of functioning.
Having a high focal length with a small focal aperture, say less than 70 mm (there are classifications for apertures), will bring a large, blurry image. The distance will depend on what you want to observe.
This is where we see the image provided by the telescope. It is a small accessory with an even smaller lens. But its size does not represent its importance.
They are small magnifying glasses for you to see where your celestial spy is positioned. The most important tip: you discover the magnification of a telescope by dividing the focal length by the aperture size of the eyepiece.
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