The Ultimate Guide on Telescope Selection

Are you curious about the minute details of distant objects like birds, stars, and even planets? With your sleeves rolled up to take your first step in practical astronomy, your mind is still overwhelming. Telescope selection is a big step for sure. But don’t rush like so many beginners in their excitement end up buying telescopes that are not practically efficient enough, which ultimately result in nothing but disappointment.

Telescope selection may seem daunting to you at first. Still, once you arm yourself with a basic understanding of each type of telescope and its accessories, the selection of this exciting toll will become a piece of cake. 

This article is the ultimate guide on telescope selection and will take you through the world of astronomical tools in just a few minutes.

starry sky

1. Different Types of Telescopes

“The right first step for telescope selection requires the answer of “HOW and WHERE you will use your telescope.”

The only question popping into your mind, again and again, is how to choose a telescope. First of all, to fully enjoy this thrilling experience, you must know the market trends and role of different kinds of telescopes to pick your suit from the bewildering array of this tool available in the market. There are three major types of telescopes:

(1) Refractor

With its simple design and heart-throbbing qualities, this type catches your attention at first sight.

Pros:

Refractors are:

  • Lightweight
  • Portable
  • Requires very low to no maintenance. 
  • Offer interchangeable eyepieces

Cons:

There are a few downsides of refractors as well:

  • They offer limited availability of aperture. (Deep-space objects appear dim)
  • Large lenses make them relatively heavier.
  • Per inch of aperture adds more to its price, making it expensive.

(2) Reflectors

Reflectors utilize mirrors in their structure instead of lenses. 

Pros:

  • The broadened aperture caused by the mirror enhances the view.
  • With mirrors, lengthened focal length is attained, perfect for viewing deep space objects.
  • They require no wire or batteries and can completely be automated.

Cons:

  • They are bulky.
  • Require disassembly to transport.
  • Take more room when not in use.

(3) Catadioptrics

These are similar to refractors but are particularly famous for their long focal length.

Pros:

  • With Catadioptrics, it is possible to view color bands on various planets.
  • Ideal to view near and far deep sky objects.
  • Require less to no maintenance.

Cons:

  • Due to high magnification, the target object may disappear after some time. (Electronic tracking mounts are bought to overcome this downside).
  • The clarity of the objects is less than that with refractors.

According to the latest study, there will be a huge increase in telescopes’ astronomical scope and market size.

The growth rate of the telescope’s global market size is expected to alleviate from USD 1091 million in 2020 to USD 1155.8 million by 2026.

The major application and end-users involved in the growth of telescope’s market size mainly involve the following:

  • Education
  • Personal
  • Scientific research
  • Others

Main regions focusing on the telescope market in 2021 include the following:

  • America
  • APAC
  • Europe
  • The Middle East and Africa

3. Importance of Choosing the Right Telescope

The actual purpose of buying a telescope will help to choose the right option. Otherwise, you might start questioning the enthusiastic chatter of your astronomer friend. 

  • If you’re not sure about sticking to your stargazing hobby, it’s better to go with binoculars first. It’ll be a good beginning for you to learn about the sky without breaking the bank.
  • However, if you’re interested in viewing the deep-sky celestial objects, you should go with telescopes that are designed for beginners.

4. How to Choose the Best Telescope?

If you don’t want your hard-earned money to be spent over buying a telescope that will be tucked away in the corners of your garage due to its complicated setup and underwhelming views, consider the following points before you get your first telescope:

  1. Budget: Estimate the budget that you can afford. Most of the beginner’s telescopes range from $200 to $400.
  2. Type: Among various types, choose your best pick depending on the view you want to enjoy.
  3. Configuration: Either you’re comfortable with heavy telescopes or buy one for your little astronomer kid, make a wise choice picking the right configuration.
  4. Application: Each telescope has its application, from sharp images of deep-sky objects to observing rings and clouds. Take your time, and select the one matching your needs. 

5. Wrap Up

In the end, whatever choice you make among refractor, reflector, and Cassegrain, to get the answers to all your queries and inevitable questions, get in contact with a specialist optical solution provider, i.e., Apexel, to take your stargazing up a notch.

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