tasco lumina 450X

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  • Member since
    May, 2005
tasco lumina 450X
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 4:24 AM
Hi,

I've been reading most of your messages about buying a new telescope and I myself are about to buy one, but I'm just as confused as when I started researching telescopes.
I was wondering if anyone could help advice me on one I've found.
Judging from some people's comments, Tasco aren't a good make, is that right?
I live in Australia and it's from the National Geographical shop (not sure if anyone's heard of the store)
And there's a Tasco Lumina 450X that caught my eye, it's a refractor, 60mm, focal length 900mm with an equatorial mount.
it has 3 interchangable 31.7mm diameter (1.25") eyepiece (20mm, 12.5mm, 4mm focal lengths) 2x Barlow lens
I would be really grateful if anyone can tell me if this is a good invertment or not.
Thanks Blush [:I]
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 6:44 AM
To be perfectly blatant, a wood stick would be a better telescope than that. Honestly!
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 7:50 AM
Your better off going to Orion or Hardin Optical

www.telescope.com
www.hardinoptical.com
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 8:49 AM
It's tough and expensive to purchase a good Scope in Austrulia, from what i read. The 60mm is really too small to see anything. 90mm is as small as i would purchase. Set a budjet and look around for a better scope. Import dutieas and tax could hurt from a another Country. Maybe some of the Aussies in these Forum's will respond with some local Dealers.
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 9:40 AM
Its a terrible piece of garbage.

Now for other stuff, look around and try to find a store the specializes in astronomy near you that you could even order online through them. The national geographic store isnt a good place to buy one. The typical minimum size telescope to buy that will last for a long time is an 8" and usually a reflector. Let us know what kind of prices you can afford on the dobsonian telescopes and any other large ones.
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 9:59 AM
As the veteran astronomers here will tell you, the 450x is meaningless. Makers of inferior telescopes will attempt to attract newbies, like you and me, with outrageous claims of power. One of the true measures of a telescope is its aperature, and 60mm is'nt much. For most of us, price is an issue. That's why many of us choose to go with the Newtonion design. You get more aperature for the price. Having said all that, I believe that any telescope is probably better than no telescope. Binoculars might even be a nice option.
  • Member since
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 10:26 AM
theres a fine line here, most 60mm,s divide between junk and starter scopes- look for the one,s that have -coated optics, 1.25 EP,s - NOT the hybrid diagonal, and an EQ mount instead of really cheap alt/az- if your funds are really limited, your probably better off with 4-1/2" newt to start with-
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 10:32 AM
Exactly, a 4.5" newt would be good, but don't get the ones with the corrector lenses in the focuser!
  • Member since
    January, 2004
Posted by tkerr on Sunday, August 15, 2004 11:00 AM
To be blunt they are using false claims to catch your attention there is no way yo can get 450X magnification with that amount of aperture.You can typically count o a maximum of 50x per inch of aperture. 60mm is approximately 2 1/2 inches. so the most you could get is 150x magnification. theoretically you could go up to 60x per inch of aperture. But you would have to be somewhere that the air is totaly dry and stable. Even at 150x magnification you would still need ideal seeing conditions.

There are a few telescope companies that make the same type of false claims with their introduction telescopes. they advertise unrealistic magnifications and have nice pictures of Deep space objects and planets. But those pictures are also false claims. They are usually images from a professional telescope or something like the Hubble.

Also if you check around here on this forum and others you will find that the national geographic science store is no better than a department store when it comes to purchasing a telescope.

Didn't mean to be so negative about it, or burst your bubble and hopes with that telescope. but I think you would be better off with out that telescope and the line of BS they are feeding you with it. Shop around and be patient, you will find something of better quality that will be just what you really want.

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  • Member since
    August, 2004
Posted by astronc on Sunday, August 15, 2004 12:42 PM
Being new to astronomy and not knowing any better, I bought a 60mm Tasco scope at
a yard sale a couple of months ago. After about three weeks of trying to focus on some-
thing, anything, I started shopping around. I have since purchased an Orion 70mm
refractor scope. But, thanks to Bonnie and Charley, it's been cloudy and raining since
the day that I received it and I haven't been able to try it out yet. I hope that I've made the
right choice of product for a beginner scope. Could anybody give me some input about
this scope, and what I can expect to see with it. Thanks


  • Member since
    November, 2003
Posted by Ripps1 on Sunday, August 15, 2004 1:13 PM
I've had some experience with the Orion 70mm model. The scope optics were good and the 1.25" eyepieces fair. Switching from Kellners to Plossles made a noticable improvement. For the usable magnification of a 70mm ( around 135x ) the tripod is adequate for visual use. The scope was built much better than the typical "department store" variety. Overall I would say it was a good buy.

That being said, behold the soapbox:

Even with good equipment, most beginners get frustrated because they "can't find anything". With it's moderately long focal length, that scope will have a narrow field of view and finding targets will be difficult for the beginner. A scope with a focal ratio of f8 or less would help tremendously. Here's the rub - good fast scopes cost more to make - period .

The other problem is it will invert the image. The sky will not correspond to the map or planispere you just looked at. The brain takes a little while to get used to this.

This is why binoculars are the starting tool of choice and why a lot of us on this forum will make that recommendation to the newbie. They have a wide field of view, do not invert the image and are relatively inexpensive. Since both eyes are being fed the same information, the effective aperture appears greater than the diameter of the glass would lead you to believe and contrast is seemingly enhanced (ie. you've got a brain - let it do the work) I've spotted objects in my 10x50 binos that took me a while to "see" in my 102mm refractor even though my scope has a much greater light gathering capability. IMHO, they are truly the best way to learn the night sky. Besides, they have all sorts of daytime uses, too. -Rip


GATEWAY ASTRO - a boring but worthwhile site for St. Louis area amateurs. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/gag_astro 15x70 Oberwerk 4.25" StarBlast TV102 C8 18" Obsession w/Sky Commander
  • Member since
    May, 2005
thanks!
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 6:06 PM
Wow, I really appreciate all the advice and help from everyone.
Well, I guess that telescope won't be bought!
To be honest, I don't have a price range, well, unless it's thousands of dollars! But I don't mind spending hundreds on one.
It's for my birthday and I really want to invest in a really good telescope.
I was even looking on this astronomy website in their section of telescopes and their best buy was the Meade, but then someone in the forum mentioned to never buy a Meade because the motor has a habit of breaking down.

If you guys don't mind I'll shop around some more taking in everyone's advice and let you know what I find and perhaps ask you lot again?

Thanks heaps!
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 6:27 PM
That's not true- Meades are great, as long as you stay away from their low-end DS models.
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 7:09 PM
Here are a few links for you to go to on deciding on a telescope. www.telescope.com www.meade.com www.discovery-telescopes.com www.optcorp.com www.forthenightsky.com www.celestron.com
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 15, 2004 7:29 PM
that being the case, id i only had one scope- id have an SCT (in your budget an 8") new or used mounted on something like a CG5- being in AU though, you may find a deal on a used super polaris
  • Member since
    January, 2004
Posted by tkerr on Sunday, August 15, 2004 8:15 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by astronc

Being new to astronomy and not knowing any better, I bought a 60mm Tasco scope at
a yard sale a couple of months ago. After about three weeks of trying to focus on some-
thing, anything, I started shopping around. I have since purchased an Orion 70mm
refractor scope. But, thanks to Bonnie and Charley, it's been cloudy and raining since
the day that I received it and I haven't been able to try it out yet. I hope that I've made the
right choice of product for a beginner scope. Could anybody give me some input about
this scope, and what I can expect to see with it. Thanks





No one told you about the weather that you purchased along with the telescope did they. Actually it is the new telescope curse. It is a common occurance with the arrival of a new telescope. You will be very lucky to get use of it with in the first few days. It is mother natures way of testing your anxiety levels..

Have A Nice ...
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  • Member since
    January, 2004
Posted by tkerr on Sunday, August 15, 2004 8:28 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by fran80

Wow, I really appreciate all the advice and help from everyone.
Well, I guess that telescope won't be bought!
To be honest, I don't have a price range, well, unless it's thousands of dollars! But I don't mind spending hundreds on one.
It's for my birthday and I really want to invest in a really good telescope.
I was even looking on this astronomy website in their section of telescopes and their best buy was the Meade, but then someone in the forum mentioned to never buy a Meade because the motor has a habit of breaking down.

If you guys don't mind I'll shop around some more taking in everyone's advice and let you know what I find and perhaps ask you lot again?

Thanks heaps!


To help you even more if you could tell us what your budget would be we could help more. Now when you consider your telescope budget it also helps to think about accessories. Such as more eye pieces. Also it would help if we knew what your primary interest in observations would be. Would you eventually want to do some astrophotography. Are you interested primarily in observing the planets. Do you want to hunt down deep space objects such as far away galaxies and nebula. Or something that could be used for all around purposes. Choices like these would help. Those are just a few of the things to consider. Also think about the future of your interest in astronomy. If you start out to small you may get aperture fever quikly and want something larger.

When you are looking around and you check out places like http://www.celestron.com they do not sell directly. But they do have a large list of authorized dealers. Check them out. A lot of them deal in many different brands of telescopes. Also to remain competative some of them have sales and may offer something you want at a lower price then another does.. So shop around and you can find a good deal.

Have A Nice ...
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  • Member since
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, August 16, 2004 12:00 PM
here is a web site giving basic info for picking a telescope and also some telescope dealers in Aus.:

http://astronomy.trilobytes.com.au/scope.htm
  • Member since
    April, 2002
Posted by DougDob on Monday, August 16, 2004 12:11 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by walterhayes1

here is a web site giving basic info for picking a telescope and also some telescope dealers in Aus.:

http://astronomy.trilobytes.com.au/scope.htm
Great post, walterhayes1!!! Bookmark that one fran80! Lots of good advice from a site down under!!
Big Smile DougDob Big Smile If at first you don't succeed, keep on sucking until you do succeed! - Curly Howard
  • Member since
    May, 2005
budget limit
Posted by Anonymous on Monday, August 16, 2004 6:06 PM
To answer your question tkerr, I want to use the telscope to see as far out as possible, i want to see the planets, the galaxies, nebular etc. I've seen enough on this earth and want to just have this as a hobby.
My budget is a few hundred australian dollars, I'm not too sure on the exchange rate with the american dollars.
im checking out all the recommended websites that everyone suggested.
adrienrick, tkerr, walterhayes1, thanks for the sites, I'll let you know what I find....Big Smile [:D]
  • Member since
    January, 2004
Posted by tkerr on Monday, August 16, 2004 6:20 PM
You basically want the same thing I do. I like a little.... scratch that.. A lot of everything. Look into getting a good sized dob. More aperture for the dollar. I have the Orion XT10 and it does a very good job on everything.

What ever you find and choose good luck then have fun. Be prepaired for for some of the worst weather as soon as you get a new telescope. There happens to be a curse with a new telescope. Something that just happens. Mother natures way of testing your patience and level of anxiety.

Have A Nice ...
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  • Member since
    May, 2005
Meade DS-2070AT: 70mm/Meade DS-2114ATS:114mm
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, August 17, 2004 10:42 PM
I looked through the websites and then went into a telescope shop, one of the only ones in Sydney and it came down to a couple of telescopes.
Meade DS-2070AT:70mm Altazimuth Refractor, Meade DS-2114ATS: 114mm, or Meade DS-2130ATS: 130mm
do you recommend any other those. I was looking at the Orions too, but for some reason they were in the thousands range which I can't afford.
And you're right, the weather has turned nasty in austrlia it's been raining for about 3days straight and it hardly ever rains here!
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, August 17, 2004 11:58 PM
NO! Dont get a meade DS. The meade DS series are pretty junky scopes, and all i hear is the motor breaks on them when loaded a little. Keep looking, you'd be better off looking more then wasting your money on the DS.
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, August 18, 2004 1:01 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by fran80

I was even looking on this astronomy website in their section of telescopes and their best buy was the Meade, but then someone in the forum mentioned to never buy a Meade because the motor has a habit of breaking down.

I wouldn't put much stock in a glossy magazine's recommendations for any product of its biggest advertiser. I refer specifically to the July 2004 review of the Meade 10" SCT with its glossing over of the telescope with vague generalities and colored pictures. This wasn't always the case. I have a copy of the December 1989 Astronomy magazine, which has a review of a Meade 10" SCT. That review is technical and highly critical, but seems honest and fair. The July 2004 article is nothing more than a cleverly-disguised ad. I no longer buy the magazine. And Al Nagler no longer advertises in it. Back when the tests were real tests, Astronomy magazine would print letters from Al Nagler, TeleVue, and Roland Christen, Astro-physics, which were critical of their telescope tests. (Incidentally, Roland endorsed Meade eyepieces in that same issue.)

Talk to others who have experience with the very telescope which you intend to buy. Forget what some magazine is paid to say. Sky and Telescope is not as blatant, but. . .

Dark skies,

Laird
  • Member since
    January, 2004
Posted by tkerr on Wednesday, August 18, 2004 2:26 PM
Trust the above comments and do your own research. There are reviews posted all over the internet by people who are not getting paid to do the reviews and advertise for the manufacture. There are plenty reviews right here in the telescope forums. Go to the top of the page and use the search. Just type in the name of the telescope you are looking at. It should give you a list of all the threds pertaining to that telescope.

You will find a few concerning the Meade DS series telescope. And you will come to the conclusion to stay away from them.

If you are looking for a good telescope with GOTO capabilities then you are going to have to save some money. But I would recomend against a goto for a first telesope. A good manual telescope will teach you more of what you need to learn. And that is to learn how to find your way around the night sky on your own. Even with a goto telescope youwill still need to know your way around and know some of the named stars. If you don't you will have a hard time setting it up and getting it aligned and ready to be used as a goto.
That is why a descent sized dob is commonly recomended. This way you can get a good size telescope for your money. At the same time you will learn your way around the night sky. Learning how to locate and identify objects on your own is much better than letting a machine do it for you. You will learn and remember more at the same time you will get a more rewarding experience out of it.

Have A Nice ...
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  • Member since
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, September 06, 2004 8:27 AM
>>It's tough and expensive to purchase a good Scope in Austrulia
I am finding this out.
Why wont the big dealers in the US ship to Australia?
The import tax and shipping alone does not account for the price difference.

>>That's not true- Meades are great, as long as you stay away from their low-end DS models.
I was interested to hear a member pan just the DS range.
After a lot of thinking I had recently decided on an ETX-70AT.
I wanted something small flexible and portable and something with GOTO.
I figure the reduced optical performance will be compensated by being able to take it out of the city on camping trips to the mountains where the sky is darker.
I spoke to a dealer in Sydney recently and they panned the ETX-70AT saying it was pure junk and that the DS-2070AT was far superior.
The ETX retails for about 600 AUD (~400 USD).
The DS-2070AT is about 500 AUD (330 USD)

Does anybody have any opinion on comparison of these 2 scopes.
I know nether is considered a serious scope for astronomy but I want something flexible and portable.

I cant understand the daft prices in Australia.
Did the dealers forget to adjust the prices after the aussie dollar made its big comeback a year ago?
Prices on EBAY are OK and a few EBAY sellers ship worldwide.
  • Member since
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, September 06, 2004 10:05 AM
The DS series ARE junk! Stay away from them at all costs.

The little ETX70 isnt that good from the ETX series. The ETX90 would be a better choice, as i think the 70 is a short tube refractor, so the 90 being a mak would have much better optics. Dont get an ebay scope, as you can get ripped off pretty easily on junky scopes. Personally, if you can chalk up the extra money for the even larger ETXs, you wouldnt be disappointed with them. Dont expect much at all for DSOs with them, as the aperture is too small to do well. The bright ones look decent. The planets/moon will be great in the 90 and up though.

The ETX 70 being a short tube refractor and all will suffer from false color and cant do well on the planets/moon. Being 70mm it'll suck on DSOs. The ETX90 is a much better choice. Some people use the ETX70 OTA as a finder on their telescope, because its not much better then a large finder.
  • Member since
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, September 06, 2004 1:00 PM
My advice: save up some more, until you can afford to buy, for GOTO, in at least the LXD75/Advanced Series range, or for manual the 8-10 dob.

Reason: With a cheap, junky scope, you'll catch aperture fever within a month of getting it, and you'll have to spend even more to get a bigger scope.
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Monday, September 06, 2004 2:20 PM
Kisses [:X] Hi! I own a Tesco 60MM Telescope & It doesn't work that great. First of all, there's the shakey mount & when you get the item you want in focus, on slight bump or jult & you lose focus & have mess & ajust the knobs to get it back in focus. I thinking of getting a new & better telescope & turn my Tesco 60MM into a solar scope, but in a safe manner.Kisses [:X]
  • Member since
    May, 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Monday, September 06, 2004 2:27 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by superstronomer

Exactly, a 4.5" newt would be good, but don't get the ones with the corrector lenses in the focuser!


Hey, i believe mine's got a correcting lens in the focuser! What's wrong with that?

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