Jump to content


Photo

Nightwatch or Backyard Astronomers Guide

  • Please log in to reply
21 replies to this topic

#1 sslcm56

sslcm56

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 189
  • Joined: 20 Jul 2012
  • Loc: Montgomery, Al.

Posted 29 September 2013 - 04:16 PM

I just got back from Books-A-Million and I found both Nightwatch and the Backyard Astronomers Guide. I am leaning more towards Nightwtch but I would love some input on which one to get. I had thought about getting both but.....

#2 FoggyEyes

FoggyEyes

    Ranger 4

  • -----
  • Posts: 342
  • Joined: 01 Jun 2013
  • Loc: Columbus, Ohio

Posted 29 September 2013 - 04:26 PM

They both are excellent books that cover different things. Saying which is best depends on what you're looking for. Nightwatch is a very good observers guide and "Backyard" contains a lot of information on many areas of astronomy. Get both, they really don't overlay much.

#3 Mr Greybush

Mr Greybush

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Moderators
  • Posts: 900
  • Joined: 16 May 2013
  • Loc: Virginia

Posted 29 September 2013 - 04:51 PM

both period !

#4 sslcm56

sslcm56

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 189
  • Joined: 20 Jul 2012
  • Loc: Montgomery, Al.

Posted 29 September 2013 - 08:14 PM

Thanks guys. I decided to get both.

#5 AngryHandyman

AngryHandyman

    Messenger

  • -----
  • Posts: 438
  • Joined: 27 Jun 2013
  • Loc: Nanaimo, BC

Posted 29 September 2013 - 08:34 PM

They're both great books, good choice picking up both. Compared to the money we can and do spend on this hobby, any investment in books is money well spent in my opinion! Enjoy your new books!

#6 AlBoning

AlBoning

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 592
  • Joined: 06 Mar 2011

Posted 29 September 2013 - 09:22 PM

If this thread was asking for the astro book you used most, which in my case would be a toss up between "Objects in the Heavens" and "Pocket Sky Atlas," and the one you used least, BAG would be it. So it's now slated to be donated to the Friends of the Library for their next book sale. Good book, read it once, than I was done with it. Thanks, no seriously, thanks, I need the space.

I think I got my copy (new, previous edition) of BAG online from EdwardRHamilton.com at a very reasonable price. You might check ABEBooks.com too. I got all three volumes of Burnham's Celestial Handbook, hardcover, with dust jackets, in new condition for less than 12 bucks including shipping, from ABEBooks.

#7 sslcm56

sslcm56

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 189
  • Joined: 20 Jul 2012
  • Loc: Montgomery, Al.

Posted 29 September 2013 - 09:29 PM

If this thread was asking for the astro book you used most, which in my case would be a toss up between "Objects in the Heavens" and "Pocket Sky Atlas," and the one you used least, BAG would be it. So it's now slated to be donated to the Friends of the Library for their next book sale. Good book, read it once, than I was done with it. Thanks, no seriously, thanks, I need the space.

I think I got my copy (new, previous edition) of BAG online from EdwardRHamilton.com at a very reasonable price. You might check ABEBooks.com too. I got all three volumes of Burnham's Celestial Handbook, hardcover, with dust jackets, in new condition for less than 12 bucks including shipping, from ABEBooks.


I have looked at Burnham's a few times but I think that they will have to be down the road for me. I really need to learn more about all this first. I have been observing for only a little over a year now. ABEbooks huh?

#8 TexasRed

TexasRed

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 976
  • Joined: 17 May 2011
  • Loc: East Texas

Posted 30 September 2013 - 01:43 AM

Backyard Astronomers Guide is a great investment to make before you start to spend serious money. It will help you decide how to spend it. Once you've read it and decided how you want to spend your money, you'll put it away for awhile.

Nightwatch is one you'll use often after you've your initial investment in gear while you're learning what's up there to see. You'll keep it handy with your eyepieces for awhile.

#9 Theoid

Theoid

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 62
  • Joined: 13 Aug 2013

Posted 30 September 2013 - 01:44 AM

Night watch is incredible!! Changed the way i view the universe!

#10 csa/montana

csa/montana

    Den Mama

  • *****
  • Posts: 86186
  • Joined: 14 May 2005
  • Loc: montana

Posted 30 September 2013 - 09:17 AM

They both are excellent books that cover different things. Saying which is best depends on what you're looking for. Nightwatch is a very good observers guide and "Backyard" contains a lot of information on many areas of astronomy. Get both, they really don't overlay much.


+1. I have both, and thoroughly enjoy both of them.

#11 panhard

panhard

    It's All Good

  • *****
  • Moderators
  • Posts: 13641
  • Joined: 20 Jan 2008
  • Loc: Markham Ontario Canada

Posted 30 September 2013 - 10:43 AM

+2 Both of them are great books to read more than once.

#12 SteveG

SteveG

    Skylab

  • *****
  • Posts: 4268
  • Joined: 27 Sep 2006
  • Loc: Seattle, WA

Posted 30 September 2013 - 02:28 PM

After 25 years I still use Nightwatch.

#13 esd726

esd726

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1041
  • Joined: 30 Sep 2004
  • Loc: Rochester, IN

Posted 30 September 2013 - 03:36 PM

Have both but never look at either one really anymore. Thinking of giving them to my boys, my youngest is really starting to like this stuff :grin:.

#14 shortbread13

shortbread13

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 146
  • Joined: 05 Sep 2013
  • Loc: Los Angeles County, CA

Posted 30 September 2013 - 05:59 PM

Bought Nightwatch first, then Backyard Astronomers Guide. Both books are great...I like the charts in Nightwatch.

#15 wavecloud

wavecloud

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 278
  • Joined: 22 Sep 2013

Posted 30 September 2013 - 06:09 PM

I found that there was always something new to learn from BAG. For a begginner's guide, Nightwatch in conjunction with the RASC's Begginers Observing Guide can't be beat. You definiteley made the right choice getting both.
If you're just starting out, get the Begginers Observing Guide, too.
Those are the books I started out on, I've never regretted the purchase of any of them.



Hey, looks like my 100'th post!
(In just over a week. I post to much... :lol:

#16 Lancem

Lancem

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 151
  • Joined: 17 Mar 2011
  • Loc: Ontario, Canada

Posted 30 September 2013 - 08:00 PM

Night watch got me hooked on astronomy 27 years ago. I still love those sky charts. I purchased the Backyard Astronomers Guide many years later when I was serious about purchasing a nice scope. It is an excellent resource.

#17 Rick M.

Rick M.

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 177
  • Joined: 16 Mar 2013

Posted 01 October 2013 - 08:58 AM

Both nicely complement each other and they contain very good guides to further reading so you can spend even more money--usefully--in the future!

#18 LDW47

LDW47

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1056
  • Joined: 04 Mar 2012
  • Loc: North Bay,Ontario,Canada

Posted 01 October 2013 - 09:22 AM

When you buy make sure they are the latest editions ( a couple of years old ) as they have been updated for today's new products / technologies !

#19 BigC

BigC

    Gemini

  • *****
  • Posts: 3151
  • Joined: 29 Sep 2010
  • Loc: SE Indiana

Posted 01 October 2013 - 10:13 AM

You can buy the latest editions that cover the newer technologies OR you can often buy the older editions very cheaply from Amazon or other sellers.Spend $50 or spend $5 for a book. Matter of fact,you might find even late editions significantly discounted online.

When searching online ,don't depend on just one search program;the results vary based on their business models(some accept pay to promote certain results) and even ideological biases(some exclude results from sites based on stated or perceived politics) of the search site owners and programmers.

The basics of the heavens hasn't changed that much from edition to edition and any new telescope should come with instructions specific to its own goto system if it has such. Non-goto scopes work now as they did 30 years ago,using eq and alt-az mounts, so for anyone using a non-goto scope visually the "white cover" Backyard Astronomer's Guide for $5 and an older Nightwatch for another $5 will do quite well.Spend yet one more $5 on one of the Stars and Planets guides by Paschoff or the Nature Skywatching and Advanced Skywatching.

For $20 (and a bit of online time finding them)a visual observer can have an excellent basic library.

Celestron and Meade also allow free downloads of many manuals and observibg guides to get one started without spending a dime!

#20 LDW47

LDW47

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1056
  • Joined: 04 Mar 2012
  • Loc: North Bay,Ontario,Canada

Posted 01 October 2013 - 10:26 AM

I have both editions ! Personally I would want to spend the extra and have the latest as there is some new info that may be of value in the long run !! Why would you want something that is at least 12 yrs out of date ?

#21 LDW47

LDW47

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1056
  • Joined: 04 Mar 2012
  • Loc: North Bay,Ontario,Canada

Posted 01 October 2013 - 10:37 AM

If the new cost is an issue then definitely by the older edition ! These books are not just about stars etc., they are also about new products, techniques,soft ware etc. ! If you just want to talk stars, planets etc.there are less comprehensive books with more specific details out there for less cost ! These books will last you a life time so why not get the latest ??

#22 Rick M.

Rick M.

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 177
  • Joined: 16 Mar 2013

Posted 01 October 2013 - 01:22 PM

For BAG updates, look here:

http://www.backyarda...onomers_Guid...






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics