We humans have been looking up at the sky for as long as history can tell us. Not only because the sky is really beautiful to look at, but also because of the immense wonders that it holds. Astronomy can be a really fun hobby, but many people who live in cities aren’t able to indulge in this hobby thanks to excessive light pollution. Today, we’re going to be looking at the best telescope for city viewing.

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Features

  • This telescope is designed to be packed into a single bag. It‚Äôs incredibly compact.
  • It has a focal length of 400mm and an f/5.71 focal ratio.
  • ‚ÄčHas an aperture of 70mm.
  • ‚ÄčIt can magnify objects 20x and 40x.

Pros

  • ‚ÄčIncredibly portable and lightweight. It‚Äôs great for traveling and use in limited spaces.
  • ‚ÄčComes with a travel backpack and an erect image diagonal.
  • ‚ÄčIts main lens is coated to increase picture quality.

Cons

  • ‚ÄčThe included tripod isn‚Äôt stable.
  • ‚ÄčThe scope‚Äôs ability to view fainter space objects is limited as well.

Contenders For The Best Telescopes For City Viewing in 2019

Features

  • ‚ÄčThis compact and durable telescope is designed for use in city environments.
  • ‚ÄčIt has a focal length of 1250mm and an f/13.9 focal ratio.
  • ‚ÄčHas an aperture of 90mm.
  • ‚ÄčIts magnification ranges from 13x to 180x.

Pros

  • ‚ÄčIt‚Äôs highly portable. You can take it pretty much anywhere with you.
  • ‚ÄčIt comes with a finderscope.
  • ‚ÄčThe telescope‚Äôs base is incredibly stable. The rest of the telescope has superb build quality as well.
  • ‚ÄčThe huge focal length of this telescope makes it ideal for city viewing. It can easily view bright and faint space objects.

Cons

  • ‚ÄčThis telescope is subject to image loss thanks to having a center spot.

Features

  • ‚ÄčA short tube design telescope that packs power in a compact frame.
  • ‚ÄčIts short body makes it optimal for wide field viewing.
  • ‚ÄčHas a 400mm focal length and an f/5 focal ratio.
  • ‚ÄčHas an aperture of 80mm.

Pros

  • ‚ÄčA great option for wide field viewing.
  • ‚ÄčComes with some accessories. It also includes a finderscope.
  • ‚ÄčIts included tripod is very stable and allows for superb control over the telescope thanks to its equatorial mount.

Cons

  • ‚ÄčIt doesn‚Äôt have the best performance in light polluted areas.

Features

  • ‚ÄčHas a 720mm focal length and an f/9 focal ratio. The lens‚Äô size is great for use in light-polluted areas.
  • ‚ÄčHas an aperture of 80mm.
  • ‚ÄčHas a magnification range of 12x to 165x.
  • ‚ÄčIts long body houses a refractor design that helps minimize image distortion.
  • ‚ÄčThe telescope‚Äôs eyepiece has a diameter of 1.25 inches and gets placed at a 90-degree angle.

Pros

  • ‚ÄčThe telescope is simple to use. It‚Äôs a great option for beginners.
  • ‚ÄčIt comes with a finderscope that is attached to the telescope‚Äôs body.
  • ‚ÄčThe telescope and its stand have a durable stainless steel construction.
  • ‚ÄčThe inner tube of the telescope is blackened to reduce light interference.
  • ‚ÄčThe telescope comes with a variety of accessories that increase its versatility.

Cons

  • ‚ÄčThe telescope‚Äôs weight and size make it hard to move around.
  • ‚ÄčIts eyepieces don‚Äôt come with eyecups.

These are some of the best ‚Äčtelescopes that you have for viewing the night sky in a city environment. Keep in mind that there are much more powerful telescopes out there that can perform amazingly well in light polluted areas. However, these telescopes are bulky and expensive. Their size makes them impractical for regular use in city environments.

‚ÄčBuying Guide

One would think that using a telescope to look at the stars or even to view a city’s skyline would be quite easy. High rise buildings provide the perfect place to set up your telescope and look at the world around you. While there are plenty of vantage points in a city, there’s also a lot of light. Light sources in the city wash out the light that comes from the stars and celestial bodies. This results in these fainter sources of light being washed out by stronger ones. This is the biggest obstacle that city-based astronomers have to deal with.

City viewing can be broken down into two categories; terrestrial viewing and extra-terrestrial viewing. The former is quite easy to do in the city since there’s an ample amount of light. All you need is a decent telescope, and you’re good to go. However, this same light becomes a problem when you point your lens towards the sky. Fortunately, certain telescopes have what it takes to view the night sky. These models are capable of viewing celestial object in areas polluted with light. Telescopes such as these will be the focus of our guide.

There’s a lot more to astronomical telescopes than you might think. If you’re new to the world of astronomy, then you may want to learn a bit about astronomical telescopes at first. One of our previous articles discusses telescopes in great depth.

What to Look For in a City Viewing Telescope

Telescopes that are used for astronomical purposes tend to be bulky. They usually come with a bipod on which they are placed when being used. Their size and bulk make space an issue. People who live in apartments or have limited space may have a hard time finding places to set up their telescope. This is why you need to keep the amount of space that you have available in mind when selecting a telescope.

The focal length matters as well. Larger lenses can capture light more effectively. This means that for city viewing, you want a telescope with a larger focal length.

When it comes to city viewing, the size of your telescope is important. However, there are some smaller details that matter as well. One of them being your eyepiece. An eyepiece with a proper eyecup makes sure that there isn’t any light interfering with your vision as you look into the telescope. Some telescopes come with eyepieces while others can be fitted with store bought ones. Speaking of store-bought add-ons, you can also consider buying a Light-Pollution reduction Filter (LPR). These filters can be attached to a telescope’s viewing lens. As their name suggests, they reduce light pollution and make fainter light sources more visible. However, keep in mind that LPRs can’t increase the brightness of far off objects. You cannot expect them to improve your viewing experience significantly.

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