Clay Johnson Asks:I would like to buy a telescope. How would you describe a good telescope? What are the specs I should be looking for?

Thank you for contacting us. This is actually the “13.8 Billion” dolar question. There isn’t anything anyone can describe as a Good Telescope. If we talk quality well there are several well known brands out there that have a great reputation for building scopes and mounts such as Ioptron, Meade, Celestron, Takahashi,  Losmandy, Orion, Explore Scientific just to name a few. Within those brands there are many types of telescopes. Newtonians, Maksutovs, Schmidt Cassegrains, Refractors, Dobsonians etc. Someone very wise said “the best telescope is the one you use” If your $20.000 C14 with CGEM DX mount weighing over 140 lbs sits in your 4th floor condo because you dont have an elevator and your sky is obstructed plus you have to drive 30 minutes to the nearest place to setup and you are over 50 and your back is in bad shape….the answer is clear. As amazing as it is it is not a good telescope for you! What we alwasy say is. Think in what you are interested. Observing planets? Observing Galaxies? Taking pictures of planets? Pictures of galaxies? scopes are like tools. You need the right one for the specific job. Our recomendation is dont buy in a retail store where the advertisement says “XX Magnification”. Maybe binoculars are the place to start. Come over to Markham Park on a Saturday night. We have several telescopes you can see. Lots of friendly people to ask questions too. Also several members always sitting outside with their own telescopes and with all sorts of models so you can ask them questions. You are always welcome especially with the 13.8 billion dolar question. Keep looking up.!!

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