A beauty to behold

 

In these modern times manufacturers are constantly striving to improve short focal length APO refractors, to increase the sensitivity of CCDs/webcams and taking new approaches to GoTo mounts. So it’s refreshing to see that there are still a few hardy souls producing hand crafted equipment for the discerning amateur or collector of astronomical equipment.

One such company is Moonraker Telescopes ,whose Nebula Class 4-inch f/12 refractor features in this month's reviews. They're not just attractive to behold however. They are fully functional instruments in their own right and can deliver crisp views of the night sky as our latest addition to the reviews team, Steve Collingwood, can attest to.

Each scope is hand crafted, allowing for a lot of customisation if the purchaser desires, something many commercially made instruments can't really offer. But looking at the sleek lines of the Moonraker, I would fancy setting it up in my living room just to show off its elegant lines! Of course that's if the better half would let me... or if we had room for it.

Meanwhile for those who like everything nice and tidy, Atik have been busy producing a new cooled CCD with its own integrated filter wheel, showing innovation is still rife. Steve Richards enjoyed putting it through his tests imaging sky in his review.

I had an enjoyable time testing the Bresser EXOS 2 GoTo mount but after the review was done it came to light Bresser had changed to a newer hand controller. Neither Telescope House nor ourselves were aware at the time but I have to say the mount worked very well, so see how I got on with the original version when you buy or take out a subscription to Sky at Night magazine.

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