These are the classic shape telescopes that you would expect to see standing impressively in a shop window.

A refractor is a telescope that uses glass lenses only to magnify objects. It is an advanced version of the early astronomical Telescopes employed by Galileo. The large front lens (Objective) lens gathers light from an object in the night sky and transfers this through to the eyepiece, the lens or group of lenses at the rear of the tube.

The Eyepiece focuses the image onto your eye. If the image is correctly focused and the optics are properly lined-up, you will see a bright and clear image of a celestial object.

With a Refractor Telescope you can see details on the larger Planets, get exceptionally good views of the Moon, and find hundreds of deep-sky objects such as star clusters, nebulae (gas clouds) and galaxies. The views may not be wonderful, but there is a lot of fun to have with a good 60 mm Refractor.

However, many small refractors are sub-standard and disappointing for the user. Price is not always a good guide either, so it’s best to source your telescope buy from a reputable dealer.

The larger-sized models, such as the 150 mm Refractor, takes you into the area of professional telescopes. The sort that lots of amateur astronomers dream of. Their prices could set you back as much as a new car, as the manufacturing cost for a large lens is remarkably high.

Refractors are noted for their sharp views of good contrast and their lack of required maintenance. It is worth noting, refractor telescopes can be prone to generating false colour i.e. unwanted coloured fringes around objects.


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