What Type of Telescope Is Best for Viewing Planets?


Did you know that the first record of humans observing the stars dates back to 1000 BC?

Although back then there was no complex technology to assist us, humans have always had a fascination with astronomy. Are you thinking about buying a telescope and joining the millions of people that love looking at the stars?

Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place. We’re here with a simple guide that’ll help you find the best stargazing telescope for your enjoyment and budget.

Read on to find out more.

Large or Small?

The first thing to consider is the size of the main lens. Bear in mind, the larger the diameter, the more light the telescope collects. Therefore, you’ll see more detail.

If you want to view classic stars and solar system objects such as planets or the moon, a 4-5 inch diameter will be sufficient. Plenty of the best telescopes under 500 dollars is 4-5 inches in lens diameter. Buying the biggest telescope available simply isn’t necessary.

Magnification Level

Next, decide what magnification level you need. The magnification is based on the telescope’s focal length and the eyepiece. Eyepieces are interchangeable, so you can adjust the magnification after buying your telescope.

Don’t make the mistake of choosing the highest magnification level for a small telescope; the telescope won’t collect enough light, so you’ll receive a blurry image.

Choose a midrange magnification and adjust your eyepiece if necessary.

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Telescope Mounts

Your mount is what keeps the telescope steady. Even the best telescope will create a blurred image without a good mount.

You can either buy a tripod (altitude-azimuth) or an equatorial mount. Although equatorial mounts are best for tracking objects across the sky, they can be difficult for beginners to use.

Refractor Telescope

Refractor telescopes use the lens to focus on images within the scope of the eyepiece. These telescopes require less maintenance than most, but they can become costly once the lens diameter exceeds 5 inches.

Reflector Telescope

A reflecting telescope uses mirrors to focus an image. Because mirrors are cheaper to make than lenses, you may get more for your money on a reflector telescope.

However, they require lots of maintenance. The mirrors can become misaligned, damaged, or dusty, so you need to be careful with the telescope and be prepared to spend money on maintenance.

Compound Telescope

As the name suggests, the compound telescope uses a combination of lenses and mirrors to return an image.

This is the most expensive type of telescope, but also the highest quality. Additionally, you can buy portable compound telescopes that still have excellent image quality.

Buy Your Stargazing Telescope Today

That’s all the information you need to buy a stargazing telescope. Depending on your experience level, budget, and requirements, there’s something available for everyone!

Which type of telescope will you choose?

If you found this article helpful, please check out our other posts for more related topics.