Spotting Scopes vs. Telescopes for Astronomical Observing

Since spotting scopes seem to fill an apparent gap between binoculars and large astronomical telescopes, can they make viable alternatives to regular astronomical telescopes, especially in light of the fact that spotting scopes are essentially small, compact refracting telescopes that do not deliver upside-down images? The answers to this question are both yes, and no, and much of either answer depends on the intended use of the spotting scope, as well as the observer’s expectations. Let us look at some of the issues-

Why buy a spotting scope?

Spotting scopes are designed primarily for observing terrestrial targets that are at most a few hundred feet away, such as birds, hornet’s nests, and sometimes the names of ships a little way out to sea, while astronomical telescopes are by definition, intended to be used for observing celestial objects. However, this is not to say that spotting scopes cannot be used for stargazing- far from it. In fact, many astronomers routinely use spotting scopes to observe the heavens, but if you are new to the hobby of stargazing, and have other, ground-based interests as well, there are some important considerations to keep in mind before you purchase a spotting scope for astronomical observations, such as-

Ease of use

“Ease of use” refers to both the fact that even the biggest spotting scope is smaller and lighter than almost any small astronomical telescope, and that any spotting scope is easier to set up and use than almost any astronomical telescope, with the possible exception of small Dobsonian reflectors.

Image credit: Eurooptic

Image credit: Eurooptic

In the first instance, high quality spotting scopes often come with dedicated carry-case that is smaller than most brief cases, as shown in the image above. Therefore, their compactness makes them ultra portable, which means you can take it anywhere, even if you use a spotting scope with a collapsible astronomical-standard tripod.

Image credit: Optics Den

Image credit: Optics Den

In the second instance, there is no complicated setting-up procedure with a spotting scope; you simply attach the scope to the tripod, and you are ready to start observing. This a great advantage over conventional telescopes, especially for novice observers who often experience difficulty in getting the polar alignment right on tracking telescopes.

Spotting scopes (can) deliver great views

Of course, how great the views are depends largely on the quality of the spotting scopes’ optics in general, and the quality of the erecting prisms in particular. Erecting prisms are optical elements that turn images upright, but the problem with many of these prisms is that much of the light that passes through them is often absorbed, or scattered by the prisms themselves. This undesirable trait is the main reason why conventional telescopes mostly do not use prisms, except in cases where the viewing angle becomes a consideration.

Image credit: Optics Planet

Image credit: Optics Planet

Nonetheless, prisms are required in spotting scopes to keep the image the observer sees consistent with what is actually happening on the ground, so to speak. While high-end spotting scopes generally have excellent optics (including the prisms) this is not always the case with budget instruments. In practice, this means that some astronomical images can be degraded by poor optics, meaning that the price of a spotting scope is often directly related to the quality of the astronomical images it delivers. To put this into perspective, consider the image of the Moon above taken through a smart phone with an 80mm Celestron Ultima 80 spotting scope.

As a rule though, a high-end spotting scope with an aperture of 70-80mm will deliver great views of star clusters, double stars (Albireo with its high colour contrast comes to mind), the inner planets, the Moon, and even some bright nebulae, such as for instance, the Orion Nebula. However, as with all small telescopes, faint objects can be difficult if not impossible to spot with a spotting scope, because of all small instruments’ limited light-gathering ability.

Many spotting scopes accept astronomical eyepieces and cameras

While many spotting scopes come with a zoom-able eyepiece, the added optical elements in these eyepieces often make them unsuitable for astronomical observations. The good news is however that many manufacturers of spotting scopes also supply single-magnification eyepieces that usually range between 20×, and 60×, which is the magnification range that many observers with conventional astronomical telescopes use to view some of the objects listed above.

Image credit: Space.com

Image credit: Space.com

Moreover, many spotting scopes accept adapters with which to fit digital cameras and even smart phones directly onto the scope for basic level astrophotography and digiscoping. However, it must be noted that astrophotography requires a telescope with the ability to track objects to get the best results.

Spotting scopes are (sometimes) cheaper than conventional ‘scopes’

Of course, this depends on many factors, such as the design of the astronomical instrument, the intended use of the spotting scope, the amount of money you want to spend on a telescope, and many others, such as where you want to observe the sky with a spotting scope.

It must be remembered that the lion’s share of the price of a conventional telescope goes toward the quality of the optics, with the remainder accounted for by the cost of the tripod and the tube. By way of contrast, much of the price of spotting scope goes toward making it rugged and waterproof, while keeping the overall weight down. The trade-off is often that the quality of the optics suffers.

In practice, this means that a spotting scope that incorporates advanced features such as low dispersion glass in the optics, fully multi-coated lenses, phase-corrected prisms, and interchangeable eyepieces can be more expensive than a larger astronomical instrument that will likely provide better views because it gathers more light.

However, the trick in buying the right spotting scope lies in not comparing apples with oranges. For instance, when comparing an 80mm spotting scope with an 80mm refracting astronomical telescope, it must be remembered that if the astronomical instrument provides better views, it is not because it gathers more light (both instruments have the same aperture), but because it has fewer optical elements than the spotting scope. In this case, and assuming you have interests other than stargazing, the 80mm spotting scope might be the better deal, simply because it can be used for terrestrial observing as well, where the quality of the optics is not as important.

When reflecting telescopes with apertures larger than 8mm enter the picture, the comparison becomes invalid. Spotting scopes are simply not intended for, or designed to compete with larger reflecting telescopes, which means that if your primary interest is astronomical observing, you can buy a good-to-excellent reflector for the price of an average-to-middling quality spotting scope.

How much do spotting scopes cost?

While price comparisons fall outside the scope of this article, it must be remembered that as with all optical instruments, the price of any instrument is directly proportional to its quality. Thus, in terms of price, a good starting point would be around £300 – £350, which amount will give you a good, solid scope that will provide years of excellent service.

Prices on the other end of the scale can easily run to £2000 or more, which can be too steep for most people. However, as with anything else in life there comes point of diminishing returns, and in the world of telescopes, this means that the small improvements made to average, or even good instruments are often not worth the higher price.

This is especially true of spotting scopes, whose inherent light-gathering limits cannot be improved beyond certain accepted standards- standards that are defined by any spotting scopes’ primary function, which is to view terrestrial targets. Nonetheless, more information on current prices and specifications of spotting scopes for sale in the UK are available online.

Spotting scopes are great for children

One of the main advantages spotting scopes have over conventional telescopes is the fact that they make great, affordable first telescopes for children. The comfortable viewing angle, combined with the fact that images are delivered “right-side-up”, means that children often learn the sky faster than they would normally have done using a conventional instrument that delivers upside-down, or mirror-reversed images.

Image credit: Optics Planet

Image credit: Optics Planet

The mental gymnastics required to match a star chart to an “upside-down” sky often discourages newcomers to the hobby of stargazing, which problem is eliminated with a spotting scope. Children are often not much interested in completing Messier marathons; all they want is a reasonable view of say, the Moon or the Pleiades, and if a good spotting scope can give a child that view, that child will probably remain a stargazer for life. This, when all things are considered, makes a good-quality spotting scope (irrespective of its design) an effective, affordable astronomical telescope.

The 4 Forms Of Creative Digital Agency

If you have been thinking about appointing a creative digital agency for your business – be ware, because the concept of a digital agency ready to help you can take several forms.

First of all, what is a digital agency in the broad term?

It’s basically a company ready to assist you with any of the digital changes your business needs in order to rank better against the competition and earn you visitors converting to customers.

When it comes to establishing a strong brand, the concept of leveraging the power of a creative digital agency has been popular – simply because it plays an important role and is effective. Making your business profitable and successful from the scratch demands a collaboration with a creative digital agency that suits your company best.

As a throwback to what we previously mentioned, for you to know what kind of agency suits you best – you must know the types of digital agencies:

  1. Integrated Marketing Agency – This concept of a creative digital agency uses data, analytics and marketing automation platforms to rank you better in organic search, mobile views, email and display/paid search. The advantage of this company is that it efficiently converts every data to a strategy.
  2. Digital Campaign Agency – This type of agency creates emotional campaigns, and usually spreads them to social media or traditional advertising. The great side is that it helps you build an authoritative brand through new fans and followers.
  3. DX Agency – Closing operational gaps, leveraging analytics and creating strong solutions and campaigns is what this combination of creative digital agency will do for your business – activating strong buying decisions to the target group.
  4. Digital Solutions Agency – The last type of creative digital agency takes pride in also being the most recent one. This concept allows you to operate with greater efficiency and flexibility, while finding great competition with big consulting groups. This way creates a digital experience that outperforms the customer experience and kind of ‘hypnotizes’ the users to your brand.

To wrap things up, the best way for you to hire a digital creative agency in Kent is to use a combination/mixture of all the types we mentioned.

After all, only a creative digital agency knowing all of the aspects is ready to take your business to new heights, right?

Watch Sky TV in Netherlands: Sit, Relax and Enjoy

Be one of the most satisfied customers once you subscribe to any local satellite and watch Sky TV in Netherlands. You can get the best TV deals once you add your subscription with the Blade IPTV set top box, which you can purchase from Amazon. This device would allow you to connect your Internet subscription; therefore, you should also get a UK bundle in order to enter the virtual web.

With your premium package in accessing the 200+ channels in Netherlands, there is also an additional of 80+ HD channels that are free to air. This can kill your boredom during weekends and make your time worth the spending once you decide to turn your television whole day. This would give you the best entertainment with trusted channels you subscribed plus the online streaming from the web you can expect to get.

Sky TV service is already tested by time because they have been serving people of Netherlands for years and all are indeed satisfied with what they are getting. Addition to this is the Blade IPTV set top box, which can make your TV watching experience more interesting and at the same time a whole lot more entertaining.

Depending on your specific location in the said country, you should coordinate with your local satellite installer because the dish size would matter depending on where you reside. This is very important because the satellite provider maintains the high quality of the HD channels that they are promising to you. In addition, your Internet connections need to have the fastest speed, to ensure that there would be no lagging moments as you enjoy the online streaming of your favorite football game or movie series perhaps.

Additional to this are the amazing features that the Blade IPTV set top box has. When you live in Netherlands and subscribe to Sky TV, it can make your life more exciting in a way that if you are fanatic of a TV show, yet because of your very busy schedule, you tend to skip some episodes. With the Blade IPTV set top box, it is never a problem if you have missed the live show because you can just save it in your flash drive and replay it the moment that you have all the time in the world to watch it.

Even if you got only the star-up package of your Sky TV subscription, with the device that would allow you to be connected online, it seems that you can already have the premium package with the unlimited exploration you do via surfing the Internet. Above all these, you can watch the HD videos and high-resolution images on the wide screen of your TV and even in your computer.

Therefore, you can share your amazing TV adventure with your family as you watch Sky TV in Netherlands.

British TV Abroad: The Changing Face of Sports Broadcasting

Do you remember those days when you used to miss out watching your favorite sports games because of one of these two reasons?:

  1. You haven’t bought the tickets or unable to visit the sports venue.
  2. Your cable operator is not providing the sports channel to your location and when broadcasting of a sports event live is not possible, it is practically useless to watch it afterwards as you know the result.

This is quite annoying and frustrating for any sports fan. Even today, when we have a host of sports broadcasting networks and various DTH (Direct To Home) services, there are still many things that prohibit you from wacthing your favorite sport event live.

One of the major reasons behind this is that the sports events are broadcasted differently in every country. You may be a fan of formula 1 car racing, but unfortunately you are traveling to a country where Formula1 is not a popular sport and thus the local broadcasting network doesn’t transmit the Live F1 race in that particular country. Hence you miss out watching the live F1 race. This happens often to many people who travel abroad, especially those who need to travel regularly.

But now, you don’t need to worry anymore, because IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) is here to help you. There are so many things that make IPTV a very popular mode of watching international sports channels live all over the world. You can simply watch any international sports event live with an IPTV set top box and it doesn’t matter if this event is being broadcasted in your region or not. All you need is an IPTV set top box and a high bandwidth internet connection to watch the game or event.

If you think that IPTV can only help you watch the live sport games and events, then hold on – IPTV offers much more than that. You can browse through the IPTV interactive programming guide and check the schedule of various sports events and their broadcasting times in your region. Not only this, you can even watch the sports programs or events that you have missed watching live anytime with IPTV. This brings you in the whole new world of sports entertainment. Watching sports is now more interactive and entertaining than ever before. All credit goes to IPTV.

British TV Abroad

Enjoy hassle free television outside the UK

Television viewing all over the world has changed a lot since the introduction of set top boxes. Gone are the days when you were bound to watch those boring television shows over and over again. Now, things have changed drastically. Today, you can get a wide range of television channels to watch on your television sets or even on other devices, such as smartphones and tablets. There are certainly no limits to how much you TV you can watch! Television channels are simply providing complete entertainment 24/7, 365 days a year. But, sometimes what is more frustrating for the person is to miss out his/her favorite TV shows when they are traveling abroad. Now, people don’t have to face this situation again because there are various options available today to watch TV anywhere and anytime. People can now watch their favorite TV channels anywhere in the world on VPN.

What is VPN and how does it work

For those people who are not aware of VPN, it is an acronym for Virtual Private Network. Basically we are talking of virtual networks that offer seamless connectivity to various television viewers all over the world. Any person living in any corner of the world can watch British television overseas on the VPN. Whenever you access the television channels through VPN, you are connected to a virtual server that will provide you with your favorite TV channels. Since, the launch of the VPN service, watching television has changed drastically. People who used to miss out watching their favorite TV shows can now watch them with the help of VPN.

How you select a trusted VPN service?

Selecting a VPN provider might have been a rather tough task for some people. There are many VPN service providers available today offering an array of packages to watch television abroad. The selection of the VPN service provider mostly depends on the price. Every VPN service provider offers different packages. Some of these packages start from just $100 to as much as $500. It is always better to compare the rates of the various VPN operators based on their packages. Once have shortlisted the packages that suit your budget, you can then look for the number of channels available in your location. This is a very important point to consider since, you may be getting a cheaper rate, but you might not be getting the desired channels to watch. So make sure you do not focus solely on the price.