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Newbie looking to buy Orion SpaceProbe 130ST Equatorial Reflector Telescope

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#1 Karmy

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 12:07 AM

Hello!

 

I am a total newbie and would like to buy a telescope to view the night skies where I live. I live in Montana on a ridge line so have no light pollution. This would be a stationary scope. We read reviews about the Orion SpaceProbe 130ST Equatorial Reflector Telescope and wanted to get opinions from this group.

 

Background: We wanted to see the Christmas Star of Jupiter and Saturn and dug out an old Tasco that we bought at an auction years ago. Turned out we didn't have an optical lens so it was worthless. Found this forum by accident with someone else's question about Tasco. Since it was so old and not worth paying for a new lens we decided to buy a new telescope since we have a perfect location to view the stars.

 

Any input would be appreciated and if you have any other recommendations. Price is not an issue. Thanks so much, in advance.

 

Karmy


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#2 qswat72

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 12:25 AM

I’d post a wanted ad in the Classifieds section. More people will see it there, plus it was built for these kinds of posts.

#3 cookjaiii

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 12:43 AM

I started with a 130mm f/5 and it was a very good way to start in the hobby.  Mine was on a simple alt-az mount (aka table top Dobsonian).  The Spaceprobe 130 you are considering is on an equatorial mount.  These are a little more difficult for beginners as they are a little less intuitive than the simple up-down, left-right of an alt-az mount, but with practice, you will master it.  Also, the mount doesn't look very sturdy from the picture, but I don't have direct experience with it, so it might be OK.  There is nothing as frustrating in this hobby as a shaky mount.

 

Have you considered a Dobsonian such as the Orion xt6 or the xt8?  The xt6 is about the same amount of money as the Spaceprobe 130 and it it will be much less shaky and better optically, especially on planets and the Moon.  If you can afford it, an xt8 will show you so much more that either the xt6 or the Spaceprobe 130.  

 

Weight, storage space, and portability are important considerations for any scope you choose.

 

Good luck.


Edited by cookjaiii, 07 January 2021 - 01:02 AM.

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#4 DenverNights

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 12:46 AM

A lot of very knowledgeable folks on this site (not me, I’m a newbie) would suggest to you an 8”+ dobsonian.  Since you don’t need to move it around much, many would suggest up to a 12” dob.

 

a great many folks will pitch in here soon with more details.

 

best of luck to you!


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#5 Sky Muse

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 12:48 AM

Hello!

 

I am a total newbie and would like to buy a telescope to view the night skies where I live. I live in Montana on a ridge line so have no light pollution. This would be a stationary scope. We read reviews about the Orion SpaceProbe 130ST Equatorial Reflector Telescope and wanted to get opinions from this group.

 

Background: We wanted to see the Christmas Star of Jupiter and Saturn and dug out an old Tasco that we bought at an auction years ago. Turned out we didn't have an optical lens so it was worthless. Found this forum by accident with someone else's question about Tasco. Since it was so old and not worth paying for a new lens we decided to buy a new telescope since we have a perfect location to view the stars.

 

Any input would be appreciated and if you have any other recommendations. Price is not an issue. Thanks so much, in advance.

 

Karmy

If the Tasco is that old, then it may have come with a .965" focusser; that is, the barrel of an eyepiece that would fit being almost an inch in diameter.  Very few eyepieces are available in that older format.  The present standard is 1.25"; and with 2" being the largest commonly available, and for an even wider view.

 

130mm of aperture is worth the while, and will reveal hundreds if not thousands of objects.  The telescope being a Newtonian will require occasional and regular collimation.  The Orion kit includes an equatorial mount, which has a learning-curve in its own right as well.

 

Shhh, I just heard footsteps.  Someone else, a fellow member, has just replied and probably with a suggestion for a 6" or even an 8" "Dobsonian".  I can't wait to see who it is.  As I type, I just heard another enter the room.


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#6 Tangerman

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 12:49 AM

If you're only interested in visual and not astrophotography, I'd recommend getting something that doesn't use an equatorial mount. Even if you are interested in astrophotography, that should be a different setup entirely. 

My standard recommendation is an 8" Dobsonian telescope for beginning visual use. Dobsonian refers to the mount. This is an easy to use mount. It would hold am 8" reflecting telescope, which is wonderful under dark skies like the ones in Montana. 


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#7 Sky Muse

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 12:56 AM

Actually, if you want to learn about telescopes and mounts, I would suggest this kit instead...

 

https://www.telescop...yCategoryId=339

 

It would be easier to collimate, being longer, but a bit more wobbly on the mount provided.  It would also allow for the higher powers without having to resort to a 3x-barlow; only a 2x, if required.


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#8 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 06:15 AM

Hello!

 

I am a total newbie and would like to buy a telescope to view the night skies where I live. I live in Montana on a ridge line so have no light pollution. This would be a stationary scope. We read reviews about the Orion SpaceProbe 130ST Equatorial Reflector Telescope and wanted to get opinions from this group.

 

Background: We wanted to see the Christmas Star of Jupiter and Saturn and dug out an old Tasco that we bought at an auction years ago. Turned out we didn't have an optical lens so it was worthless. Found this forum by accident with someone else's question about Tasco. Since it was so old and not worth paying for a new lens we decided to buy a new telescope since we have a perfect location to view the stars.

 

Any input would be appreciated and if you have any other recommendations. Price is not an issue. Thanks so much, in advance.

 

Karmy

Karmy:

 

Hello and :welcome: to Cloudy Nights.

 

There are two sides to a telescope, the telescope itself and the mount.  I have owned a few Orion Spaceprobe 130ST's, the telescope is quite good though the focuser has issues.  The difficulty is the mount, it's simply not big enough to provide a steady view, it will jiggle and wobble when you try to focus, in a slight breeze. In fact, in December, I gave an old mount I had to someone with a SpaceProbe 130 ST because of the frustration he was having.  

 

I do not recommend it because of the inadequate mount.  

 

You have a number of choices, these depend on your interests, priorities, and just how much "price is not an issue" is.  Dobsonians offer the most capability for your dollar, a nice refractor can be used terrestrially as well as astronomically.  

 

Some of the older Tascos were actually quite good, some were not so good. Maybe you could post the model and any information on the focuser. 

 

Jon


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#9 GeoffC47

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 10:32 AM

Some of the older Tascos were actually quite good, some were not so good. Maybe you could post the model and any information on the focuser. 

 

Jon

Here is some more background on the variety of Tascos from Ed Ting: 

https://www.scoperev...com/Tasco1.html



#10 rhetfield

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 10:49 AM

Karmy:

 

Hello and welcome.gif to Cloudy Nights.

 

There are two sides to a telescope, the telescope itself and the mount.  I have owned a few Orion Spaceprobe 130ST's, the telescope is quite good though the focuser has issues.  The difficulty is the mount, it's simply not big enough to provide a steady view, it will jiggle and wobble when you try to focus, in a slight breeze. In fact, in December, I gave an old mount I had to someone with a SpaceProbe 130 ST because of the frustration he was having.  

 

I do not recommend it because of the inadequate mount.  

 

You have a number of choices, these depend on your interests, priorities, and just how much "price is not an issue" is.  Dobsonians offer the most capability for your dollar, a nice refractor can be used terrestrially as well as astronomically.  

 

Some of the older Tascos were actually quite good, some were not so good. Maybe you could post the model and any information on the focuser. 

 

Jon

I will second these comments.  My scope is a $200 AWB OneSky (tabletop dob mount) - optically the same scope as the Spaceprobe 130ST.  A neighbor owns the spaceprobe.  As John has pointed out, the focuser is not the best (my opinion is that it might even be worse than the much maligned one on my scope) and the mount is both wobbly and difficult to use.  Additionally, the degree circles included on the spaceprobe are primitive - making alignment and aiming more of a challenge.

 

Unless you really need the equatorial mount, a 6" dob will be more telescope for the money and will transport/setup much easier.  DIY degree circles can be added which will far outperform what the spaceprobe has.

https://www.cloudyni...degree-circles/

 

Whatever you end up getting, plan on spending $200 for accessories.  Scopes come with a low power eyepiece and a mid power eyepiece.  To get the most out of the scope, you will want a 2x barlow, a high power eyepiece, a UHC filter for nebula, and a variable polarizer for glare on moon and planets.

 

If you end up getting a 6" or larger scope, make sure you get a 2" focuser.  This will allow you to get much more field of view at lower magnification.  You would then want one wide field 2" eyepiece - usually around $150 or so.


Edited by rhetfield, 07 January 2021 - 10:52 AM.

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#11 vtornado

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 01:32 PM

telescope warehouse has a .965 to 1.25 inch mirror diagonal that works well.

 

I had a similar issue with an vintage telescope with good optics and crummy eyepieces.

The adapter allowed me to use modern eyepieces (even plossls) that were a huge jump

up in quality.


Edited by vtornado, 07 January 2021 - 01:33 PM.

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#12 Sheol

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 03:12 PM

                      Get an Orion Starblast  instead. I have owned a couple of GEQ mounts. They were headaches. And even the heaviest still had vibration any time you moved the FOV. Its why Dobs have won me over for Life. But then, I have no interest in photography. That is where GEQ mounts are best.

                      

                     Clear Skies,

                           Matt.


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#13 kjkrum

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Posted 08 January 2021 - 11:51 PM

I read something the other day that resonated because of recent frustration with tight tube rings. Never buy a Newtonian that has a dovetail screwed to the side of the tube, at least not with an EQ mount. I've seen some 130s like this on auction sites. You need to be able to rotate the tube so the eyepiece is accessible.

#14 Bistromath

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Posted 09 January 2021 - 12:02 AM

The telescopicwatch.com site is a good place to do research for a new telescope. It has reviews of many different scopes, including the Orion SpaceProbe 130 you are considering.  There is also a nice discussion on the different types of mounts that can help you with the considerations of EQ mounts and Dobsonian mounts that are mentioned in other posts on this thread.


Edited by Bistromath, 09 January 2021 - 12:04 AM.

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#15 Karmy

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Posted 16 January 2021 - 12:07 AM

Thank you all for your recommendations! I had no idea the things to consider but do know now to get a dobsonian mount vs equatorial.  Clear skies!



#16 DouglasPaul

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Posted 16 January 2021 - 06:38 AM

Thank you all for your recommendations! I had no idea the things to consider but do know now to get a dobsonian mount vs equatorial.  Clear skies!

That Tasco might be a good telescope depending on how old it is. With Tasco generally the older the better. At least try to research the model you have here before giving up on it.



#17 AWESOMEGAMER183546 Gaming

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Posted 21 April 2021 - 09:35 PM

The only problem I have with this scope is that the focuser only accenpts 1.25 eyepieces and it's a fast scope and short focal length, so field curvature is probably gonna start showing up as well as coma ( from my research done), so no paracorrs can be used due to lack of 1.25 paracorrs unlike back then, but other than that, great scope for beginners or intermediate stargazers! Well worth the money 😀!

Edited by AWESOMEGAMER183546 Gaming, 21 April 2021 - 09:36 PM.


#18 Tony Flanders

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Posted 22 April 2021 - 05:48 AM

The only problem I have with this scope is that the focuser only accenpts 1.25 eyepieces and it's a fast scope and short focal length, so field curvature is probably gonna start showing up as well as coma ( from my research done), so no paracorrs can be used due to lack of 1.25 paracorrs unlike back then, but other than that, great scope for beginners or intermediate stargazers! Well worth the money !

It's hard to imagine anybody wanting to use a coma corrector in a 130-mm f/5 Newtonian; the corrector would cost more than the scope. In any case, coma is a very minor problem at f/5, and it is mainly an isuue for low-power wide-field eyepieces, which are only available in the 2-inch format. Likewise, I've never particularly noticed field curvature in my 130-mm f/5 scope. No doubt I could detect it if I looked for it carefully, but why go looking for trouble?


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#19 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 22 April 2021 - 02:06 PM

It's hard to imagine anybody wanting to use a coma corrector in a 130-mm f/5 Newtonian; the corrector would cost more than the scope. In any case, coma is a very minor problem at f/5, and it is mainly an isuue for low-power wide-field eyepieces, which are only available in the 2-inch format. Likewise, I've never particularly noticed field curvature in my 130-mm f/5 scope. No doubt I could detect it if I looked for it carefully, but why go looking for trouble?

 

I believe there's not much field curvature but there is some coma visible..

 

My 130 SP had a two inch focuser added, I had a Paracorr as well as some rather nice 2 inch eyepieces.. 

 

It made sense to use them and the views were quite amazing.. but it only made sense because I already had them..

 

Jon


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#20 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 23 April 2021 - 12:50 AM

I'll add to the chorus of "get a Dob".  An alt-azimuth Dobsonian mount is far easier to use in many respects than a German equatorial.

 

There is a currently shortage of astronomy gear due to the pandemic but keep your eyes out for a Sky-Watcher, Apertura, or Orion 6" or 8" Dob. 


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#21 Deep13

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Posted 23 April 2021 - 01:02 AM

If you go with a 6" Dob, get the Skywatcher, not the Orion. The Orion model has an unforgivable, cheap, plastic focuser. SW's 6" focuser, and both companies' 8" models are fine.

Also, you need not go crazy with accessories. These Dobs come with everything you need to get started.

Edited by Deep13, 23 April 2021 - 01:04 AM.


#22 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 23 April 2021 - 01:28 AM

If you go with a 6" Dob, get the Skywatcher, not the Orion. The Orion model has an unforgivable, cheap, plastic focuser. SW's 6" focuser, and both companies' 8" models are fine.

Also, you need not go crazy with accessories. These Dobs come with everything you need to get started.

I also recommend the 6" Sky-Watcher Classic 150P over the 6" Orion SkyQuest XT6.  Another advantage is that it accepts 2" eyepieces.

 

Cloudy Nights members get a discount from Astronomics.

 

https://www.astronom...ope-s11600.html

 


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#23 EricSi

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Posted 29 April 2021 - 06:26 AM

Equatorial mounts are counterintuitive at first and might not be a good choice for beginners. Alt-azimuth mounts like Dobs are a lot simpler to use, and it's not that hard to move the scope as the object you're looking at starts to drift out of the field of view. 



#24 CarolinaBanker

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Posted 29 April 2021 - 07:04 AM

Hello!

I am a total newbie and would like to buy a telescope to view the night skies where I live. I live in Montana on a ridge line so have no light pollution. This would be a stationary scope. We read reviews about the Orion SpaceProbe 130ST Equatorial Reflector Telescope and wanted to get opinions from this group.

Background: We wanted to see the Christmas Star of Jupiter and Saturn and dug out an old Tasco that we bought at an auction years ago. Turned out we didn't have an optical lens so it was worthless. Found this forum by accident with someone else's question about Tasco. Since it was so old and not worth paying for a new lens we decided to buy a new telescope since we have a perfect location to view the stars.

Any input would be appreciated and if you have any other recommendations. Price is not an issue. Thanks so much, in advance.

Karmy


Karmy, when you say price isn’t an issue would you be willing to spend 2 or 3k? I’d be thinking about a nice go to. There are some go to dobs, but the 8 inch is $1,400. Push to options are cheaper. You could also get a 4 to 6 inch go to refractor ideally on an alt az mount. Potentially you could be looking at an SCT or Mak Cass if you decide you really want to look at planets.

As a companion to your telescope I also recommend a pair of binoculars.

What do you want to see? The moon? Planets? Star clusters? Split double stars? Deep sky objects?

#25 BFaucett

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Posted 29 April 2021 - 07:25 AM

I think the OP has lost interest.

 

karmy.jpg

 

Bob F.

 




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