If you’ve spent more than 30 seconds checking out different types of telescopes online then you’ll have come across at least a few Orion telescopes. In fact when it comes to telescopes Orion are known for producing some of the very best in the world, with a nice balance of innovation and reliability built into each one. Orion also aren’t a newcomer to the game of producing telescopes for amateur astronomers and have been in the telescope business since 1975, when the company was first founded by Tim Gieseler. Orion as a company has built a successful brand name on a foundation of high-quality optical products, such as a telescopes, and also making sure their customers are happy with their purchase at all times.
Orion understand that astronomers come in all shapes and sizes so they specifically manufacture a range of telescopes which can be easily classified as “Beginner”, “Intermediate” and “Advanced” models, in both their manual and computerized range of telescopes. You’ll also find that Orion telescopes are very diverse in the type of optics they use and their product range includes reflectors, Maksutov-Cassegrain, Schmidt-Cassegrain, refractor and Dobsonian telescopes; they do also manufacture their own range of computerized telescopes. In addition to all of the usual telescope accessories you might need Orion also supply a range of astrophotography accessories so you can capture those breathtaking images forever.
The company remained under the control of Tim Gieseler until 2005 when the brand was sold to the US company Imaginova, although the Orion brand name still exists as an independent company. Basically you can rest assured that any Orion telescope you buy today will perform just as well as those manufactured under the Orion brand name in the past.
Here’s a quick breakdown of some of the most popular Orion telescopes you can purchase right now:
This telescope is a reflector/Newtonian model with a 4.5-inch aperture, so it has a very respectable level of light grasp from the very start. The EQ mount makes accurate tracking of celestial objects very easy and the slow motion controls work very well. In terms of magnification the supplied eyepieces provide a realistic magnification level of 30x – 75x, although the theoretical maximum is around 220x. One of the best, and most affordable, telescopes in the Orion range – you get an awful lot for your money with the StarBlast 4.5.
If you’ve always wanted to own a Dobsonian mount telescope then the SkyQuest XT6 can provide you with a very cost effective way to do just that. The 6-inch reflector on this telescope provides for plenty of light gathering ability and the 25mm Plossl eyepiece supplied with it provides crisp and clear images up to a 48x level of magnification. Dobsonian telescopes are ideal family telescopes because they’re so stable and so easy to use almost regardless of what age you are.
The SpaceProbe is another in the Orion range of reflecting telescopes and has a pretty large 5.1-inch aperture, so you’ll be treated to some very clear images due to the amount of light being focused into the Kellner eyepieces. A major benefit with this telescope is that it performs very well in areas even where there are very high levels of light pollution, meaning the performance in areas without light pollution is literally stellar – no pun intended.
If you’re looking for a reflecting telescope with a very accurate and easy-to-use equatorial mount then the SpaceProbe 130ST probably deserves a spot on your shopping or wish list. This is another of the Orion telescopes with a 5.1-inch aperture, so you’ll have a lot of fun checking out both local solar and deep-sky objects too. The SpaceProbe gives you a view of the planets in our solar system which you always wanted but just never got with cheaper telescopes.
This is another of the Dobsonians in the extensive range of Orion telescopes but, by Dobsonian standards, is pretty small. With an aperture of just 4.5-inches you might think you’re going to get shortchanged on what you can see with this telescope but you won’t be disappointed. The smaller aperture also means this particular Dobsonian is far more portable and is a great telescope for anyone just starting off in the exciting world of astronomy.
In A Nutshell
When you invest in Orion telescopes you’re investing in a brand name which cares about not only the quality of their products but the customers who buy them too.