"SkyScout" Planetarium? Maksutov or Acromatic?

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toothferry

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WOW! has anyone seen this nifty gadget. I think its something I seriously need to learn the constellations. My major obstacle in trying to get a foothold into armature astronomy is that I don't know most of the stars.<br /><br />What do you think?<br /><br />http://www.telescope.com/shopping/product/detailmain.jsp?itemID=168388&itemType=PRODUCT&iMainCat=6&iSubCat=32&iProductID=168388<br /><br />PS- I'm thinking of buying a small highly portable telescope for planetary and bright nighttime object observations, and was considering either an f8.3 achromatic synta refractor, or a 127mm Maksutov-Cassegrain (probably a synta too- Orion) Which would give higher resolution and an overall better image, do you think? Thanks for the comments<br />
 
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tfwthom

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Save your money. Why spend the $400 on a toy. Add it to a good scope and get some good star charts. (Bright Star Atlas comes to mind)<br /><br />Here same thing you just have to buy a book and read about the object yourself. http://www.telescope.com/shopping/product/detailmain.jsp?itemID=144760&itemType=PRODUCT&iMainCat=6&iSubCat=32&iProductID=144760<br /><br />My LX90 does about the same thing (identify objects) <br /><br />Don't like Meade go with the Celestron CPC 800XLT about the same price. Only $2k and you already saved $400 towards it. (I don't like the NexStar 8i single arn design) <br /><br />edit<br /><br />Heading out the door to Lowell Obs for some astronomy. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font size="1" color="#3366ff">www.siriuslookers.org</font> </div>
 
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toothferry

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Thom, thanks for the insight and recommendations. The Meade brand does carry a lot of clout with me, and so I'd definitely consider their products. <br /><br />are you going to be using the "1.8-meter Perkins Telescope" WOW!! have fun <img src="/images/icons/cool.gif" />
 
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tfwthom

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First take this as great reasons to join an astronomy club.<br /><br /><br /><br />I played around with the 24" Clark before they opened it to the public.<br /><br /> The Coconino Astronomical Society (CAS) in Flagstaff is our sister club. We are both small clubs so each club member belongs to the other club just so you get enough people at observing sessions. CAS meets on Mars Hill in the Lowell Observatory's Steele Visitor Center and then sets up scopes in front of the Rotunda. I wanted to talk to them about some event planning so drove up for their meeting. I live on the far north side of Phoenix so it's just a 2hr drive to Flagstaff. It takes me 1hr to drive south to any of the Phoenix clubs (3 astronomy clubs) meetings so I joined the Sedona club since it's only 1.5hrs north anyway. Darker skies up north.<br /><br />CAS is a fun group, a bunch of them work at Lowell USGS or USNO so the inside info that they share is worth the trip. (can't swing a dead cat without hitting a PhD) Our club has permission to set up at Lowell's Anderson Mesa complex but since we can't camp there we don't use it. Besides all the really good observing spots have a dome on them. lol. Nice thing is getting the private tours of Lowell, the USGS, or USNO. I got to meet Carolyn Shoemaker on a tour given by Brent Archinal co-author of <br /> Star Clusters I have set up with Brent for years and all I knew about him was he said he worked at the USGS.....hell I thought he was a janitor.<br /><br />Arizona has many clubs to choose from and once you join one you pretty much join them all. I belong to the Sirius Looker <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font size="1" color="#3366ff">www.siriuslookers.org</font> </div>
 
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toothferry

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The "Clark" scope sounds like quite a nice one. its great you have an assortment of astronomy clubs to belong to, plus and arid environment with darker skies and decent elevations. <br /><br />I've been thinking about joining a club myself, but dealing with poorer seeing conditions here. Every time I see the stars here, I will envy you guys there! <img src="/images/icons/cool.gif" />
 
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toothferry

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LOL.. I've gotten the moon down to pat, and I've figured out how to find Venus-Saturn.. <img src="/images/icons/laugh.gif" /> But I'm hoping for more success finding brighter nighttime object like M13 and such. <br /><br />I like the 80apo, and I could use it as a spotting scope on vacation as well, which is a big plus, but the down side is its tiny aperture... I dont think it will do the job for me light gathering wise, which is the reason I mentioned the 120mm achromatic, although its probably tooo bulky unless I carry along a simply alt-az mount and pocket a blue-violet filter all the time. it seems to me that something like the mak-127mm would be a good all around compromise if it would make a decent terrestrial scope too. <br /><br />What about that ??<br /><br />also, Eddie, what do you think about the SkyScout Planetarium thingagig? I know, it's a big laugh on first thought.. but..<br /><br />...I guess in another decade they will come out with zero aperture computerized telescopes that works day/night, in cloudy weather, even the rain.. and even inside too!! ..and I've figured out how they will do it: just bring the "niftyscope" anywhere anytime, pop in the zipcode and time into the keypad, set the setting circles and point (even indoors) towards the sky, look through the "eyepiece" and view an LCD video image of the target though a classic refractor-like "optical tube". ..type away on the keypad to change eyepiece focal length, type in variety of eyepiece like kellner, plossl or orthoscopic naglar etc.. type in for refractor/reflector etc.. type in for size of objective.. works anytime day or night.. LOL! <img src="/images/icons/crazy.gif" /> that would be absolutely horrible in a funny way. <br /><br />Anyhow, I am actually interested in getting the skyscout because I think I can learn the constellations with it, and then I can use a REAL telescope for REAL objects other than just the moon. <img src="/images/icons/rolleyes.gif" /><br /><br />thanks everyone f
 
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