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What is the experience using the Sky-Watcher Skyhawk 1145P SynScan AZ GOTO telescope and can it be recommended for a new astronomer? Is it any good?

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  • $\begingroup$ It depends on what are you going to do with $\endgroup$ – Oleg Dok Jan 12 '12 at 6:25
  • $\begingroup$ Star gazing and looking at planets etc this will be our first telescope $\endgroup$ – Diana Brown Jan 12 '12 at 9:26
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    $\begingroup$ Goto mount is one of those things that sounds really good on paper, until you get some experience and learn what it really means. Unless you're completely unable to read a simple map, a goto mount will more likely get in the way, rather than help. Get a dobsonian instead, it's more bang for the buck. Install Stellarium on an iPhone or laptop. Get the "Turn left at Orion" book. $\endgroup$ – Florin Andrei Feb 29 '12 at 0:47
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No, I would not recommend this telescope. It has several counts against it:

  1. Small aperture: 150 mm aperture is a recommended minimum.

  2. Short focal ratio: Good mainly for low power wide field views, not suitable for planets.

  3. Most of the money goes into the computer, very little into the optics.

Instead, I recommend a manual telescope with a large enough aperture to give satisfying views of both planets and deep sky objects. For the same money you can get a larger and more solidly mounted Dobsonian like Skywatcher Dobsonian Telescopes - Dobsonian Telescopes by OVL.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks all, i really like the idea of a goto mount, i realise that this is not the best scope and optics are below minium recomendations. So i have found another one that i think might do the trick. I am limited for physical space to store the telescope so i have found a small scope with a larger Focal length SKYWATCHER SKYMAX 102 MAKSUTOV-CASSEGRAIN. Magnifications (with eyepieces supplied): x52 & x130 Highest Practical Power (Potential): x204 Diameter of Primary Mirror: 102mm Telescope Focal Length: 1300mm (f/12.74) Thanks for all your responces $\endgroup$ – Diana Brown Jan 14 '12 at 23:37
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I don't have much personal experience of the cheaper goto mounts but I would be suspicious of any goto mount under £300 (thats just the mount! telescope would be extra.) I would recommend spending more on optics and solid mount rather than motorised systems for that budget.

A brief look finds this telescope of similar design but better spec, and a fairly trusty mount.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks all, i really like the idea of a goto mount, i realise that this is not the best scope and optics are below minium recomendations. So i have found another one that i think might do the trick. I am limited for physical space to store the telescope so i have found a small scope with a larger Focal length SKYWATCHER SKYMAX 102 MAKSUTOV-CASSEGRAIN. Magnifications (with eyepieces supplied): x52 & x130 Highest Practical Power (Potential): x204 Diameter of Primary Mirror: 102mm Telescope Focal Length: 1300mm (f/12.74) Thanks for all your responces $\endgroup$ – Diana Brown Jan 14 '12 at 23:36
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It is not very suitable for planets. Actually it's best for the Moon and large diffuse objects like nebulae, clusters and galaxies. It is suitable for backyard pleasure.

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