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Astronomy - Telescope for Teenager

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Re: Astronomy - Telescope for Teenager


Postby monabri » October 16th, 2021, 3:44 pm

AsleepInYorkshire wrote:
May I ask if your good ladies DSLR has one of the long lenses attached to it by which she gains magnification and aperture please?

Thank you


My wife bought a Canon EOS250D package from John Lewis which came with two 18-55mm focal length and a bigger 75-300mm lens. With this camera, they would be classed as "normal" and "medium telefocal" lengths, used for street photography (18-55) and landscape/wildlife/sport (75-300).

For astrophotography, she bought an additional, smaller lens (in terms of physical length) fact it was this one ... -a-budget/

The article provides a good explanation as to what she is trying to achieve in terms of photos (aperture control)

As you can see , it is not what you isn't one of those massively long long lenses that you see photographers using at sports matches or "on safari" in Africa....quite the opposite in fact....but see below.

The Samyang 14mm falls into the "wide angle" category when used with the Canon EOS250D - which is a cropped sensor DLSR camera (the same lens might be classed "Ultra Wide angle/almost fish eye" if used with a full frame professional/more expensive camera).

The lens wasn't too expensive when we bought it last year but it seems to have ramped up in price.

Here's a useful table... :o ... op-factor/

You can see though that the table indicates "telescopes with camera attachment" (text on the top right of the linked item) with super long focal lengths of 600+ (no doubt these would be quite large...and very expensive).

As you can see, a long length lens is actually at the opposite end of the spectrum for her requirement, she's not trying to zoom into the hell holes of Uranus (!). Using long lenses must be a nightmare, requiring a camera mount and shielding from the wind.

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Re: Astronomy - Telescope for Teenager


Postby vrdiver » October 18th, 2021, 6:55 pm

Just reading through this thread, the best advice given was (imho) to join a local astronomy club.

It will give both of you the chance to talk with people in your area and to have local astronomers guide you through the sky, demo starting different bits of kit. You don't need to buy anything to begin with, and the local club can help you with loan kit and recommended sources and decent 2nd hand kit as well

Astronomy is like many other subjects, a big topic with lots of specialist and niche areas within it. Depending on your daughter's interests, different kit will be recommended. They will also have meetups at good "dark sky" sights, so help you get the best viewing for miles around, rather than maybe suffer light pollution every night.

A few questions to consider:
Does she like the challenge of hunting and finding stuff, or will she lose interest/get frustrated if she can't see her target quite quickly? That may dictate whether manual or automated "go to" mounts are a better choice.

Does she want to learn star lore and to be able to navigate her way around the sky, or does she want to investigate specific stars? Does she want to take photos, or is she happy to do visual astronomy and use the internet for any images?

Does her GCSE in astronomy recommend anything, or does the syllabus have any segments where specific kit would be more useful?

Re kit itself, as others have said, a wobbly mount is bad news for viewing, and a disaster for photography. You were looking at the Celestron SLT and SE ranges. Check the maximum weight of kit for the tripod, and remember that eyepieces can weigh several hundred grammes, as well as adding a spotter scope or camera back, and you don't want to get anywhere close to the maximum weight, as that is only feasible in perfect conditions, not on a breezy Yorkshire evening!

Seeking of Yorkshire evenings, will she put up with cold nights (you can buy heated jackets etc.) or will it be better to do "remote" astronomy from the PC?

I'd recommend reading, including kit reviews to get a feel for the choices and compromises that different kit configurations offer. Forum websites like are also pretty good for getting more experienced astronomers' viewpoints.

Not sure how far away they are from you, but have a good reputation for customer service.

Hope it goes well. It's a great hobby.


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