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Saturn & Jupiter

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Posted by Bob Sal on August 6, 2001 12:44:46 UTC

Hi Thom;
The moons of Jupiter a visible with almost any optical aid. I can see them in a 6x30 finderscope. The rings of Saturn become visible at about 25 to 30X magnification. They are very clear at 36X. You can use high magnification for the Moon and Planets. Use low magnification when viewing Deep Sky objects. You don't need real high magnification like the 475x magnification many cheap department store telescopes advertise on the box. Remember, it's not about magnification, it's about light gathering power which comes from the aperture (how fat the telescope is). The magnification comes from the eyepiece and since they are interchangable, theoretically, you can put any magnification on any telescope. You just can't focus past a certain point. If you haven't bought a scope yet, stay away from these cheap types. Depending on your budget, get a good 60MM to 102MM (4") or bigger refractor to start with from Celestron, Meade or Orion. There are other good makes, some very expensive, these are reliable and affordable. A good 60MM will run about $175, from there you can go as high as you like. A 60MM will give you good views of the Moon and planets but not much more. An 80MM will show you lots more. If you only have around $100, get a good pair of binoculars instead. 7x50 of 10x50 are great Astronomy. The reflector telescopes are great also, but a refractor is good to start with. You can always move up to a big reflector later. Good Luck.
That's it;

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