Top 10 beginner telescopes for 2024

22 December 2023  |  Admin

Top 10 beginner telescopes for 2024

Whatís the best telescope for beginners? The answer is simple: the best telescope is the one that gets used. 

Choosing a telescope for a beginner means thinking about the person that uses it, their interests and their needs. Never choose a telescope purely on price.

Telescopes for beginners are designed for observing different objects. Generally speaking, refractors are designed for planets and the moon; the longer the telescope tube, the better the views. Reflectors, which are shorter and broader, tend to get the best view of galaxies, star clusters and nebulae. Others integrate smartphones, some are large and heavy and others are designed for travel. 

Here are 10 telescopes for beginners, each with diverse features, to help you see whatís available Ė and get you closer to deciding which one is the best for you.

Best for all-round usability

BEST SELLER
Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 114AZ Smartphone App-Enabled Newtonian Reflector Telescope
£238.99
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

Dock your smartphone on the award winning app-enabled Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 114AZ Newtonian Reflector Telescope and quickly navigate the night sky, ideal for beginners, it includes 25mm & 10mm eyepieces and the Celestron Starry Night software.

Check Smartphone Compatibility - Click Here

£238.99

This popular model is a Newtonian reflector with a 114mm/4.5-inch aperture to collect enough light to resolve galaxies, star clusters and nebulae. As well as being a contender for the best-value all-rounder telescope, itís one of the Celestron StarSense Explorer range, so it can be aligned and targetted using a smartphone app.

Best for great value deep sky views

Celestron StarSense Explorer 8'' Smartphone App-Enabled Dobsonian Telescope
£655.99
Awaiting Stock<span class='category-hidden'> - More Units Expected</span>  Awaiting Stock - More Units Expected

Dock your smartphone on the award-winning app-enabled StarSense Explorer 8" Dobsonian Telescope and quickly navigate the night sky, ideal for beginners, it includes 25mm eyepiece, StarPointer red-dot finderscope and the Celestron Starry Night software.

£655.99

If you want excellent views of the deep sky and donít mind living with a relatively large telescope, consider a Dobsonian reflector (nicknamed a Ďlight bucketí). This 203mm/8 inch Newtonian reflector is large, and its pin-sharp views of galaxies, star clusters and nebulae are impressive. As a bonus, itís also one of the Celestron StarSense Explorer telescopes, so it is easy to aim. 

Best telescope for travel

Bresser Classic 70/350 Refractor Telescope
£108.99
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

The Bresser Classic 70/350 Refractor Telescope is a compact, lightweight, easy to setup and use telescope, it comes with a tripod, an upright view correcting-prism, x3 eyepieces and tripod carry case.  Complete with a 5 year extended warranty.

£108.99

If youíre taking your first steps in astronomy and want to take a telescope on trips and holidays, consider this 70 mm/2.8-inch refractor. A good size for studying the moon and planets, it comes complete with a backpack for easy travel.

Best for tabletops

Dealers
Exclusive
Celestron Royal Observatory Greenwich Firstscope Table Top Telescope
£94.99
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

This Special edition Royal Observatory Greenwich FirstScope Table Top entry-level telescope from Celestron is a superior tabletop Dobsonian optical tube with a 76mm reflector an excellent option for kids and families, this simple portable design is easy to use for of all levels of astronomers and comes with a 2-year warranty.

£94.99

A Dobsonian reflector makes an ideal first telescope because itís easy to use and collects a lot of light. This 70mm/2.8-inch entry-level telescope from Celestron can be stored upright in a cupboard or on a bookshelf and carried outside to a table in the garden when required. 

Best telescope for children

National Geographic 50/360 Refractor Telescope AZ with Table Tripod
£62.69
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

The National Geographic 50/360 Refractor Telescope with table tripod is compact for younger astronomers, with a focal length of 360 mm (up to 60 x magnification) gives excellent views of the moon, planets and distant stars. Includes 5-year warranty offer.

£62.69

Donít make the mistake of buying a telescope for your children that is too small to leave any impression on them. This 50 mm/2 inch refractor is not the most ambitious telescope, but has two eyepieces capable of wide-angle and close-up views of the moon and planets. 

Best for occasional use

Celestron StarSense Explorer 130mm Smartphone App-Enabled Tabletop Dobsonian Telescope
£389.99
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

Dock your smartphone on the award-winning app-enabled Celestron StarSense Explorer 130 mm Dobsonian Tabletop Telescope and quickly navigate the night sky, ideal for beginners, it includes 25 & 10 mm eyepiece, StarPointer red-dot finderscope, the Celestron Starry Night software and comes with a 2-year warranty.

£389.99

Tabletop telescopes are so convenient, but their typically small size limits what youíll see. If you like the concept but donít want to sacrifice quality, consider this 130mm/5.1-inch aperture Dobsonian reflector. An excellent all-rounder thatís larger than most while still being easy to store, it can be used on a tabletop or a tripod and also comes with the. Celestron StarSense Explorer app for added simplicity.

Best telescope the moon and planets

Celestron Astromaster 102AZ Refractor Telescope
£252.99
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

If you're looking for a dual-purpose telescope appropriate for both terrestrial and celestial viewing, then the Celestron Astromaster 102AZ Refractor Telescope is for you.  A finderscope, an upright image diagonal, two eyepieces (20mm and 10mm) and Celestron Starry Night Software are all included.

£252.99

If the moon and planets are your primary targets, opt for a refractor with an aperture of 100-125 mm (4-5 inches). This manual telescope from Celestron adds a generous 660mm focal length that helps get a magnified image of solar system objects thanks to its smaller field of view.

Best telescope for smartphones

Celestron Inspire 100AZ Refractor Telescope
£269.99
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

The Celestron Inspire 100AZ Refractor Telescope is the ultimate telescope for the novice to intermediate astronomer, and has the easiest setup of any entry level scope. Comes with two eyepieces (20mm and 10mm), erect image star diagonal, a red LED flashlight, StarPointer Pro red dot finderscope, and an integrated smartphone adapter.

£269.99

This 100mm/4 inch refractor is designed to get the best from the moon and planets and comes with a lens cap that cleverly transforms into a smartphone adapter. It ensures your smartphone is perfectly positioned over the eyepiece to snap images of the lunar surface. Itís also got a nifty red LED flashlight that illuminates the eyepiece holder.

Best solar telescope for beginners

Bresser Solarix Telescope 76/350 with Solar Filter
£100.39
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

The Bresser Solarix Telescope 76/350 is a Newtonian reflector telescope with an alt-azimuth mount for lunar, planetary and solar observation. Offering up to 175x magnification with the included eyepieces and Barlow lens, also take photos with this telescope using the included smartphone adapter, all this and much more plus a 5-year warranty.

£100.39

With the sun predicted to reach solar maximum in 2024 or 2025, now is a great time for seeing sunspots on its surface. This 76 mm/3-inch Newtonian reflector telescope has a solar filter for observing the sun and a smartphone adapter for taking basic images. However, it could last well beyond the current solar maximum, with partial solar eclipses visible from every year between 2025 and 2030. 

Best for deek sky views

Celestron StarSense Explorer 12'' Smartphone App-Enabled Dobsonian Telescope
£1,259.99
In stock<span class='category-hidden'>, immediate despatch</span>  In stock, immediate despatch

Dock your smartphone on the award-winning app-enabled Celestron StarSense Explorer 12" Dobsonian Telescope and quickly navigate the night sky, ideal for beginners, it includes 32 mm eyepiece, StarPointer red-dot finderscope, the Celestron Starry Night software and comes with a 2-year warranty.

£1,259.99

Although it comes at a higher price than most telescopes designed for beginners, this 304mm/12-inch aperture Dobsonian reflector is ideal for anyone with deep pockets who wants to begin their journey observing and learning about the night sky. Its huge aperture means impressive views of galaxies, star clusters and nebulae, while its Celestron StarSense Explorer app makes it incredibly easy to use.

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