Main technical features
Perfect for the serious beginner and intermediate astronomer, the Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130ST comes equipped with a parabolic 130mm primary mirror. It also features a 24-inch long optical tube design referred to ironically as a Short Tube. The scope also boasts a fast f/5 focal ratio. The optical tube assembly (OTA) comprises a 1.25-inch 25mm Sirius Plossl Eyepiece with 26-power view when used with the scope. The supplied 10mm Sirius Plossl Eyepiece delivers a powerful 65X magnification along with a wide 52-degree apparent field of view.
The sturdy mount consists of an EQ-2 equatorial telescope mount plus an adjustable tripod. The mount is engineered for precision with its slow-motion hand controls and dual setting circles. The mount is also geared to be lightweight yet strong and to provide remarkable height adjustability. If you want a scope that will enable you to track objects in the sky as they move, this is the one to get.
This telescope ships with everything needed for you to start your own celestial observing adventure. Weighing just 27 pounds when fully assembled, the telescope comes with a 6×30 finder scope to assist you with aiming the device accurately at objects in the sky. This model even allows you to explore the skies on a cloudy evening because of the free Special Edition of Starry Night astronomy software. The software comes with natural-looking sky simulations and contains information on telescope control. It is designed for use on PCs running Windows 7, 8 or 10, as well as Mac running OS X 10.4 or later.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($299.99)
Designed for use by the mid-level astronomer as well as the novice stargazer, this model is able to collect an adequate quantity of light with its parabolic reflector design so you can get great views of the moon and the planets, along with the more brilliant star clusters, nebulae and galaxies. Enjoy incredible wide-field functionality and easy portability with this versatile telescope that comes with a 25mm 1.25-inch barrel diameter Sirius Plossl Eyepiece. Providing medium magnification at 26X, this eyepiece provides 52 degrees of apparent field of view for exceptionally high contrasts and remarkably sharp images. The 10mm Sirius Plossl Eyepiece provides greater magnification at 65X, also with an apparent field of view of 52 degrees for closer inspection of objects. The lens surfaces are treated with aluminum and silicon dioxide mirror coatings to enhance the scope’s astro-imaging capability. The 130mm aperture on the diffraction-limited parabolic mirror is used on larger reflectors that cost many times as much. It is necessary for focusing the incoming light to a point while reducing diffraction spikes along with loss of light.
The equatorial mount is sturdy and precise and is supplemented with slow-motion hand controls plus dual setting circles. The EQ-2 mount enables effortless tracking of celestial targets as they move across the night sky. This can be facilitated after a simple northern/ southern hemisphere alignment procedure, after which you can observe them in fantastic detail. The aluminum tripod provides height adjustability while being rigid, so you can have a reliable platform on which to view the sky. The tripod includes an accessory tray to hold flashlights, eyepieces and other items within easy reach.
The scope comes with a collimation or alignment cap, and a center-marked primary mirror to enable problem-free alignment. This relatively compact yet performance-driven device is equipped with a 6×30 Finder Scope that lets you accurately aim the telescope at targets in the night sky. After alignment, just look through the finder scope and adjust the scope till you see the crosshairs perfectly centered on the target. When you peer through the telescope, that object is guaranteed to be right there. The included Starry Night SE Software is user-friendly and allows you to get guidance on telescope controls, along with realistic sky simulations so you can understand what you are viewing. It also enables you to plan your nighttime observations accordingly.
Adjusting the height of the tripod with the telescope already in place can be challenging and can become a two-person task. One customer suggests that the tripod and mount be set up properly prior to attaching the telescope tube. Adjusting the legs can be difficult once you’ve already mounted the tube. You may need a spirit level since the tripod doesn’t have an integrated one. This is especially essential if you want to do some serious astronomy work but is not a necessity for casual viewing.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($299.99)