Monday, September 24, 2012

Advice for First Time Telescope Buyers...Contd (5)

Number 5: What Brand Telescope is Good?

In the beginner telescope market, this question has become clouded in the last 15 years or so (the good news is that there are more choices than ever before and plenty of great beginner scopes). Meade and Celestron are two major telescope companies; in years gone by all the telescopes offered by these companies were good to excellent. That has changed today, unfortunately the name Meade or Celestron on a telescope no longer guarantees that the scope is a good one. 

Meade and Celestron have made a much bigger presence in the "consumer" telescope market in the last decade or twos. In the 1970's, if you owned a Celestron telescope, you owned a good telescope (period). Back then, all of their telescopes (about 4 models) were American made. Today, both Meade and Celestron market telescopes that are not ideal choices. Both Meade and Celestron still make some outstanding products; the problem is that people just starting out don't necessarily know which ones to avoid. Another vendor of a number of excellent starter scopes is Orion Telescopes and Binoculars.

"Made In China" For better or worse, this is a fact: nearly all entry level telescopes available today are made in China. Here's the thing to be aware of: China does have the capability to manufacture some pretty decent optics. There are two flavors of Chinese telescopes. The ones you want are ones that are designed and built to American specifications and quality control standards. There are many Chinese telescopes available from many outlets that are manufactured under no particular controls, and these are the ones that are probably best to avoid. Quality control can be an issue so there's some chance you'll get a "dud". Stick with the major brands and you are more likely to get a good scope!

Credit and Source:
Joe Roberts

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