Accessible accessories

No matter what astronomy kit you buy, there’s a good chance that there’ll be something you can add to it to enhance its usefulness and performance. Many manufacturers and suppliers offer equipment and associated accessories as packages, but what constitutes a package is largely up to them. Fortunately, most packages have been put together using common sense.

So, for example, if want to buy a telescope on its own you might find you have a choice between just the tube or a package including a finder, tube rings and an eyepiece adapter. The finder might be surplus to requirements but the tube rings and eyepiece adapter might be essential, so do you buy the OTA and then the accessories separately or the OTA package?

A few retailers do allow you to pick and choose which accessories you’d like along with your OTA giving you the opportunity to buy what you really need, and I applaud that approach, to a limit. For people just starting out in astronomy, this mix and match ordering can be a tad confusing as it’s often far simpler to buy a complete system, so it is not for everyone. However it’s good to see such a broad mix of options out there.

This month a finder wasn't included for my review of Takahashi's FC-76DS doublet refractor! But that didn't stop me enjoying it at all. Meanwhile, Pete Lawrence got to play with the ZWO ASI120mm camera and Steve Richards gave the Vixen SD2 mount a workout. Find out how we got on in the July issue of Sky at Night Magazine, out now.


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