The Best Telescope In Australia For 2020

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A telescope is an amazing piece of equipment that will get you and your loved ones looking up at the sky enjoying mesmerising magic that often goes by unnoticed by the naked eye.

Whatever your inspiration for buying a telescope, choosing your first scope is always a challenge simply because there are so many options and it can be difficult to know which kind of telescope does what.

If you’re not sure where to start, use the reviews and buyers guide below to narrow down your options to find the very best telescope for your needs.


1. Best Overall: Celestron PowerSeeker 80mm EQ Refractor Telescope


Celestron 21048 Power Seeker Telescope, Refractor, Black


There are a number of things that make the Celestron PowerSeeker a great choice of telescope. This is perfectly suited to beginner astronomers as it is simple to set up and produces amazing results.

The PowerSeeker 80mm is a great option for terrestrial and astronomical use, the set up is easy and it has slow-motion controls that make tracking smooth. The coated glass optical components enhance image brightness and clarity to truly open up the view and allow you to experience it fully.

This high-quality telescope comes with two eyepieces (20mm and 4mm), a 3x Barlow lens that triples the magnifying power of the eyepieces and an accessory tray. This telescope is a great first-time scope as it is excellent quality and requires minimal maintenance.


What We Like:

Perfect for beginners
High clarity and image brightness
Easy to use

What We Don’t Like:

The finder and focuser are made from plastic


2. Best Telescope For Kids And Beginners: SVBONY SV25 Refractor Telescope


SVBONY SV25 Refractor Telescopes 60mm Travel Scope 420mm Focal Length for Kids Children Educational Astronomy Beginners with Aluminum Tripod and Optical Finder Scope

The SV25 is a perfect first-time telescope for kids and beginners. This entry-level astronomical refractor telescope has a 420mm focal length and a 60mm objective lens that creates crisp, clear and enhanced images.

The set comes with a stable aluminium tripod that is quick to put up and disassemble, the tripod is 115cm which is a comfortable height for children. The low price and portability of this model are definite advantages too.

It doesn’t take long to set up and no tools are needed at all, making it a perfect telescope for beginners. This is also a great gift for children and will encourage them to learn about astronomy. This telescope comes with a lifetime warranty.


What We Like:

Simple set up beginner telescope
Value for money
Perfect for amateur astronomy
Lifetime warranty

What We Don’t Like:

Ideal for gazing at the night skies and moon but viewing deeper space requires a stronger scope


3. Best Computerised (GoTo) Telescope: Celestron Nexstar 4SE Telescope


This Celestron telescope is a lightweight, high-quality, computerised scope perfect for enjoying and photographing astronomy. It is fantastic for anyone looking for an easy way to enjoy the stars. The total weight of this telescope is just 21lbs so it is amazing for travel and taking it to different areas.

The precision optical system has a 1,325mm focal length and has StarBright XLT coatings. There is a camera control feature that allows you to remotely take timed photos with a digital SLR camera.

One of the amazing things about this model is that it has all the features of Celestron’s advanced computerised telescopes including SkyAlign alignment technology and a database of close to 40,000 celestial objects. These state-of-the-art features are user-friendly and make sure you get the most out of your astronomy experiences.


What We Like:

High-quality
Access to a database of almost 40,000 objects
Great for astrophotography

What We Don’t Like:

Advanced astronomers may find they need more accessories to optimise the experience


4. Best Telescope For Travel: Celestron Travel Scope 70mm AZ Refractor Telescope


CELESTRON 21035 Celestron Travel Scope 70mm f/5.7 AZ Refractor Telescope Kit, Black


If you do a lot of travelling and are looking for an option to take with you on the go this is a perfect telescope for just that. This set even comes with its own backpack as well as a selection of features.

The coated glass optical elements all produce clear, crisp images and the erect image diagonal ensures the view is correctly orientated. The mount is smooth functioning for easy pointing to objects and there is a full-size aluminium photographic tripod that gives a stable platform for your stargazing.

This telescope is great for beginners and intermediate astronomers as it is quick and easy to set up and use but also gives you the opportunity to refine your skills. The custom backpack makes this kit easy to store and travel with. You also have access to TheSkyX – First Light Edition software which has a database of 10,000 objects as well as printable sky maps and enhanced images.


What We Like:

Portable
Great value
Durable

What We Don’t Like:

Some users may find the light tripod is not as strong as required


5. Best Telescope For Deep Space: Skywatcher 8 Dobsonian Telescope

SKYWATCHER SWDOB200 Skywatcher 8 Dobsonian Telescope,

If you’re looking for large-aperture at an affordable price the Skywatcher 8″ Dobsonian Telescope is the best available. This telescope gathers enough light for detailed viewing of the deep sky.

Setup time is minimal so you can be viewing prominent deep space objects such as star clusters and nebulae in next to no time. The large aperture of this reflector telescope is perfect for wide-field observation as a larger aperture means more light-gathering power so you can see more. The set comes with 25mm and 10mm eyepieces.

The Tension Control Handle will provide stability so the telescope remains in the desired position for viewing and will remain in that position even if the mount is rotated. No matter what your experience, this is a simple to use option that will show you so much more of the sky and solar system than you ever imagined.


What We Like:

Value for money
Perfect for enjoying the details of the distant night sky
Suitable for beginners and more advanced users

What We Don’t Like:

Large size


Telescope Buyer’s Guide


A telescope is an amazing way to enjoy the night sky and stargazing. Buying your first telescope, however, can be daunting as there are a few important things to consider. The best telescopes allow you to observe the finer details of the universe and see things many people will never see. Use this guide to make sure you get the best telescope for you.

Types of Telescopes

There are three main types of telescope, each one differs from the next and it is important to be aware of these differences when you are selecting your telescope. You’ve probably heard of each type but you might not be sure what they do or which is best for your needs so we’ve summarised each of the telescope types below:

1. Refractor

A refractor telescope is the most popular type. They tend to be lightweight, simple to use and intuitive. On top of that, they produce excellent views and require little to no maintenance. However, refractor telescopes are limited as large lenses are extremely expensive and often unmanageable.

2. Reflector

A reflector telescope generally offers more aperture for your money and the larger sizes are more manageable. A reflector telescope is great for looking at faint objects in the night sky. The colour is not impacted by this type of telescope as the light is not being refracted. Reflector telescopes do require more care and maintenance than refractors so keep this in mind.

Many scopes of this variety (including the Dobsonian, or Dob) are considered a Newtonian reflectors, which is the type invented by Sir Isaac Newton. They utilise a concave primary mirror in combination with a flat diagonal secondary mirror.

3. Catadioptric

These telescopes are generally compact while offering amazing optical performance. They are robust and versatile but also tend to be heavy compared to refractors. Catadioptric telescopes are best for astrophotography and viewing faint objects but they are expensive.

A refractor or reflector is recommended if you’re just getting started with stargazing or even wildlife viewing.

Telescope Size

Bigger is usually better as you want the telescope to be able to gather light (and lots of it) which means having a big aperture. The telescope with the larger aperture will be able to give you better image quality and will make it easier to see the fainter objects.

  • Small scope – up to 4 inch aperture.
  • Medium scope – 4 – 10 inch aperture. Great for amateurs and often available at affordable prices.
  • Large scope – 10 inch aperture. Best for more advanced astronomers.

Features

There are several important features that make up a telescope. Sometimes these features are overlooked but each plays a pivotal role in the final product so take them into consideration when comparing scopes.

  • Eyepieces – the eyepiece should be comfortable and large enough that you can see through it without having to squint.
  • Mount – the telescope mount is a very important part of the device as it provides a stable surface and support structure. Heavier mounts are better as they provide more stability but of course, this extra weight can impact the portability of your scope. Many sets will come with a mount but if it is not good quality you may want to upgrade it. Consider also an equatorial mount or tracking mount.
  • Finder – a telescope finder will help amateur astronomers point the telescope in the right direction. They are especially useful when it comes to looking at fainter objects in the solar system. There are a few types of finder available including the basic peep sight which is perfect for beginners and the slightly more advanced reflect sight which points a red dot/ laser into the sky.
  • Focal Ratio – focal ratio is the focal length of the telescope divided by the aperture, it is usually written as f(number). f4 is good for wide-field and deep space photography while f/15 is better for higher power observing and astrophotography.

Price

You don’t need to break the bank in order to enjoy the night sky, the price of a telescope varies hugely so you should be able to find one within your budget. You should be able to find a good quality telescope for a few hundred dollars and this price will rise as you look at larger apertures and more advanced options.