Telescopes For Beginners

Here at OPT one of our primary missions is to make the universe easy to access for beginners, which is why we offer so many ideal telescopes for those just getting started or for those shopping for kids. These telescopes are ideal for learning the ropes of exploring the night sky and are designed to be fun and easy to use. So, if you're looking to take your first steps into the wonderful hobby of astronomy, look no further- you've come to the right place to find your first tool for that journey! There's a lot to learn, but OPT will be by your side at every step of the way. We'll even buy back your first telescope once you're ready to move on to the next step, so you can look at that first telescope as an investment in your future enjoyment. Below you will find an information video on the basic types of telescopes to get a better idea of what you want to do with your own!

Be sure to check out our Top Ten Best Beginner Telescopes as well!

Here at OPT one of our primary missions is to make the universe easy to access for beginners, which is why we offer so many ideal telescopes for those just getting started or for those shopping for kids. These telescopes are ideal for learning the ropes of exploring the night sky and are designed to be fun and easy to use. So, if you're looking to take your first steps into the wonderful hobby of astronomy, look no further- you've come to the right place to find your first tool for that journey! There's a lot to learn, but OPT will be by your side at every step of the way. We'll even buy back your first telescope once you're ready to move on to the next step, so you can look at that first telescope as an investment in your future enjoyment. Below you will find an information video on the basic types of telescopes to get a better idea of what you want to do with your own!

Be sure to check out our Top Ten Best Beginner Telescopes as well!




 When starting out in this hobby, it all can be a little daunting and confusing with terms like Alt-Az, EQ, Catadioptric, Focal Length, and much more terminology common in the industry. Thankfully, none of this need be very complicated and your telescopic goals can be easily fulfilled with a couple of basic categories.

Choosing for your Purposes

This is the primary distinction to make when it comes to selecting your first telescope. Certainly, you can take part in both visual astronomy (looking at the planets, the moon, and more through an eyepiece) and imaging (taking pictures aforementioned objects, nebulae, galaxies, and more) with the same telescope, but imaging will require a few more pieces.

Visual Astronomy

One of the most common words you'll hear when it comes to visual astronomy is "Dobsonian." This is the classic telescope we've all probably seen at some point in our lives. It basically looks like a long time, potentially as tall or taller than you, with a sturdy, swiveling base. These are a type of reflecting telescopes which means they function using mirrors to reflect and focus the light coming into the eyepiece. Generally, these are less expensive than refracting telescopes due to mirrors being cheaper to manufacture, but the lower price does not have to mean lower quality. No matter what you choose for visual astronomy, set up and use will be easy enough. Simply put the scope together--which can be a less than 10-minute process, attach your eyepiece, and take a look at the wonders above!

Astronomy Imaging

This is where cameras and more specific details come into play, but it can still be a simple process that our experts at OPT are happy to guide you through! Imaging all comes down to a few items, which are the camera, the mount, and the tripod--and the telescope itself, of course. When it comes to imaging, refracting telescopes are the most commonly used due to their visual fidelity and because they are much more portable than Dobsonians. Imaging can be as complicated or as simple as you want it to be, and we will assist you every step of the way whether you're looking for the perfect eyepiece or an upgraded imaging system. We encourage you to check out our guide on Astrophotography Setups for Beginners and to contact the OPTeam if you have any further questions on this or anything else astronomy related.

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