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General Astronomy >> Beginners Forum

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pugliano
super member


Reged: 06/16/11

Loc: Michigan
Book of The Finest Objects To Observe??
      #6227227 - 12/01/13 02:29 PM

Is there a book that is devoted exclusively to the gems of the Heavens? Something that describes the object and has charts (hopefully with telrad circles!) that show where to find the most impressive and easiest to view objects? For example, the top 10 most beautiful double stars, the top 10 most stunning open clusters, the top ten best galaxies, 10 finest globular clusters, and the top 10 best nebula?

These should all be easy to see and find with a small scope, like a 4" refractor or a 6" dob.

You know....one book that compiles the best objects for amateurs with small scopes to see!


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rdandrea
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 06/13/10

Loc: Colorado, USA DM59ra
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: pugliano]
      #6227256 - 12/01/13 02:43 PM

I'm kind of partial to Objects In The Heavens in that regard. No telrad circles, but that doesn't mean you can't print your own on a piece of acetate.

If you order it from the Author's website instead of Amazon, he'll probably autograph it for you.


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steveward53
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Reged: 05/14/12

Loc: Newmarket,UK
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: pugliano]
      #6227259 - 12/01/13 02:44 PM

I like this one very much ... http://www.amazon.com/001-Celestial-Wonders-See-Before-ebook/dp/B003VYC8UW

Edited by steveward53 (12/01/13 02:47 PM)


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esd726
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 09/30/04

Loc: Rochester, IN
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: steveward53]
      #6227271 - 12/01/13 02:55 PM

For a "basic" book with all this Norton's list of objects (at least Deep Sky) fits this but Cambridge Star Atlas atlas I like better than Norton's.
Objects In The Heavens is really good but might have too many objects for the OP.
I looked through all my books but these are the only ones that even come close to what the OP wanted. They are either too detailed, not enough charts, etc.
If you could combine Norton's "list" with Cambridge's atlas with a basic list of double stars...That would be just about what you are looking for, minus the Telrad stuff.
What's this like? www.astronomics.com/night-sky-atlas-the-moon-planets-stars-and-deep-sky-objec...

Edited by esd726 (12/01/13 02:59 PM)


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Odell
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Reged: 04/29/12

Loc: Florida
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: esd726]
      #6227730 - 12/01/13 06:56 PM

This may not be the most relevant answer but, Skytools 3 has the ability to set up an observation list nightly that has the evenings showpieces as one of the lists it can generate. It also has "Interesting Deep Sky", "NGC/IC", "Off the Beaten Path", "Interesting Stars", and "Double Stars". That might be something that would be helpful and would create concise lists out of several sources. Also, it can suggest the best placed objects for your location and season. The other plus may be for the price of the program you would have a significant cost savings over buying the books to glean all that information. I'm sure there are other observation planning programs that are similar, ST3 is what I use.

Maybe a little off topic (OP asked for a book) but I couldn't find anything that really fits the OP's bill.

HTH


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pugliano
super member


Reged: 06/16/11

Loc: Michigan
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: Odell]
      #6227786 - 12/01/13 07:32 PM

Thanks for all your responses! I just looked at SkyTools and saw it's only available for Windows (I have a Mac). But I do already have Sky Safari, which can probably do something similar.

I was just hoping there might be a book that listed the top 100 best astronomical sights for a small telescope or something.


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Sean Wood
super member


Reged: 04/19/11

Loc: North Carolina
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: pugliano]
      #6227884 - 12/01/13 08:22 PM

I suggest Turn Left At Orion as a good "beginner" book. It has tons of general observational tips as well as info on decent variety of specific targets including how to find them and pretty dead on sketches of what to realistically expect at the eyepiece in both a 90mm Mak and a 8"newt. This book is spiral bound and the pages are coated so it is built for field use.

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StrangeDejavu
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Reged: 03/20/13

Loc: Florida
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: Sean Wood]
      #6227901 - 12/01/13 08:30 PM

Quote:

I suggest Turn Left At Orion as a good "beginner" book. It has tons of general observational tips as well as info on decent variety of specific targets including how to find them and pretty dead on sketches of what to realistically expect at the eyepiece in both a 90mm Mak and a 8"newt. This book is spiral bound and the pages are coated so it is built for field use.




+1 for Turn Left at Orion. No Telrad charts, but it does sort objects by the seasons and months. The sketches on what to expect helped greatly as it brought my expectations down to a reasonable level. This way, I was jumping for joy when I first saw M42, rather than "ugh... why is it black and white? and dim? what the heck?". I don't use the book much these days, but it was invaluable when I first started.


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Paco_Grande
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Reged: 07/14/12

Loc: Banana Republic of California
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: StrangeDejavu]
      #6227920 - 12/01/13 08:42 PM

"My favorite planet is the Sun"

http://youtu.be/vrFUBKCONfs



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izar187
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Reged: 09/02/06

Loc: 43N
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: pugliano]
      #6227939 - 12/01/13 08:54 PM

Quote:

Is there a book that is devoted exclusively to the gems of the Heavens? Something that describes the object and has charts (hopefully with telrad circles!) that show where to find the most impressive and easiest to view objects? For example, the top 10 most beautiful double stars, the top 10 most stunning open clusters, the top ten best galaxies, 10 finest globular clusters, and the top 10 best nebula?

These should all be easy to see and find with a small scope, like a 4" refractor or a 6" dob.

You know....one book that compiles the best objects for amateurs with small scopes to see!





Some of this depends sky conditions. And somewhat on the available widest field in the 4".

Both scopes are pretty portable, so taking them out to darker darkness could yield breathtaking results.

So an under powered atlas so to speak, could be hiding things you can see, but don't know are within your reach.

Anyway, here is a short list of printed atlases, with descriptive tables for their targets included on their pages.

From least detailed, toward more detailed.

https://www.astronomics.com/celestron-sky-maps-seasonal-star-charts_p19489.aspx

http://www.willbell.com/atlas/atlas1.htm

https://www.astronomics.com/the-cambridge-star-atlas-4th-edition_p12247.aspx


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Kraus
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 03/10/12

Loc: Georgia.
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: izar187]
      #6228606 - 12/02/13 09:01 AM


Yes there is a book of the top ten finest, top ten best, etc. You just haven't written it yet.


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Fred Garvin
member


Reged: 09/08/13

Loc: DFW Metroplex
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: Kraus]
      #6228928 - 12/02/13 11:38 AM

Here's 1001 of them:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008BA63MU/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_ttl?_encoding=UTF8&a...


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AngryHandyman
sage


Reged: 06/28/13

Loc: Nanaimo, BC
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: Fred Garvin]
      #6230410 - 12/02/13 10:11 PM

These are my go to observing books:

Cambridge Star Atlas - a nice and comfortably scaled star atlas, may not go deep enough for difficult areas or objects but I enjoy using it.

Deep Sky Wonders - collection of targets and how to find them with full colour images; bite size articles collected from S&T's Sue French articles.

Objects in the Heavens - an essential field guide, tells me what the various objects are and where to find them by constellation.

Pocket Sky Atlas - recommended first atlas and perfectly sized for use at the scope.

Turn Left at Orion - recommended first object viewing book for everyone; gives fantastic star hopping instructions and sketches of what to realistically see at the eye piece.


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mark8888
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 09/24/10

Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: AngryHandyman]
      #6230577 - 12/03/13 12:11 AM

I agree that Left Turn At Orion is a great book, and Pocket Sky Atlas is a great map.

If you have an ipad or similar, Sky Safari is amazing. It shows you exactly where all the objects are that are visible from your location and at your level of light pollution, and it also has a wealth of information when you click on the objects. To get different levels of mag you simply zoom in or out, and you can set circles however you want. I've stopped using both Left Turn and the Pocket Sky Atlas as a result of this program. I use the Nexus: http://www.astrodevices.com/products/Nexus/Nexus.html with Sky Safari, and ipad and my alt/az mount and its an unbelievable combination.


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Mike E.
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Reged: 01/26/10

Loc: Moonstone Observatory
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: mark8888]
      #6230764 - 12/03/13 04:39 AM Attachment (4 downloads)

"Deep Sky Companions: Hidden Treasures" by Stephen James O'Meara
ISBN-10 0-521-83704-9

About 600 pages covering 109 hidden treasures of the night sky, with photos, sketches and individual star charts for each object. No Telrad circles, however the printed magnitude scales appear to be about the same size as those in the Pocket Sky Atlas.


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ensign
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/16/08

Loc: Southwestern Ontario
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: Mike E.]
      #6231304 - 12/03/13 12:13 PM

There's a difference between the questions "What's out there?" and "What's worth looking at?" the latter being somewhat more subjective. Star atlases and software typically deal more with the former.

The latter question is covered by a whole host of books. I find O'Meara's books good for this. Also the three volumes of Burnham's Celestial Handbook. "Deep Sky Wonders" (both the one by Walter Scott Houston and the one by Sue French) are definitely worth a read. My favorite (although some say it has a large scope bias) is Volumes 1 and 2 of Kepple and Sanner's Night Sky Observer's Guide.


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Sonomajfk
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Reged: 06/30/12

Loc: northern CA, USA
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: ensign]
      #6232028 - 12/03/13 07:32 PM

Birren's "Objects in the Heavens" is great to use to plan a session at the telescope. I like to take one constellation in the book, and use the list to find the "best" doubles and deep-sky objects in that constellation. Pocket Sky Atlas can help with the specifics of finding them. The bold type objects in Birren's are the "easiest" and there's enough material in that book to keep you going for a long time...

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WOBentleyModerator
Deep Sky Denizen
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Reged: 09/16/09

Loc: Pacific Northwest USA
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: Sonomajfk]
      #6232560 - 12/04/13 01:08 AM

While not exactly what you are looking for I am a huge fan of Sue French's books such as:
Celestial Sampler: 60 Small-Scope Tours for Starlit Nights
And my personal favorite:
Deep-Sky Wonders: A Tour of the Universe with Sky and Telescope's Sue French
I am also a fan of Stephen James O'Meara's books as mentioned above.


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GaryJCarter
sage
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Reged: 06/06/09

Loc: Fairview, Texas
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: WOBentley]
      #6232959 - 12/04/13 10:08 AM

Since you have Sky Safari, you may want to sign in on the Southern Stars yahoo group and download a selection of the finest objects that have been submitted there by other observers. There are lists of all descriptions, for example Globular Clusters, Open Clusters, Planetary Nebulea, and other organized by season and/or constellation. It's a terrific resource that will keep you busy for many, many moons!

Not all will have extensive descriptions linked in the info page, but many of them do.

Edited by GaryJCarter (12/04/13 10:10 AM)


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lagagnon
member


Reged: 05/15/13

Loc: Vancouver Island
Re: Book of The Finest Objects To Observe?? new [Re: GaryJCarter]
      #6233113 - 12/04/13 11:37 AM

The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada's (RASC) Observer's Handbook has some excellent lists of the finest NGCs, Messiers, Double, Variable and Carbon stars. Plus you get all the other goodies this amazing handbook offers.

Edited by lagagnon (12/05/13 01:24 AM)


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