The AC 70 telescope:
With its 70mm aperture, this telescope gathers 100X more light than the naked eye and significantly more light than the slightly smaller 60mm aperture typical of a beginner's telescope. This means it also has a higher resolution and, with its maximum magnification of 140X, can show you detail on the large planets Saturn, Jupiter, and Mars. The cratered landscape of the Moon is also well worth observing, and you can watch this changing with the different lighting conditions arising from the different phases. Fascinating nature watching during daylight hours is also made possible by adding an erecting lens or an Amici prism. Focusing is carried out by means of an adjustment knob on the rack and pinion focuser. This allows the focusing sharpness to be always precisely set and for it to remain fixed during observing.
This is also a useful acquisition for advanced astronomers or when changing to a more powerful system as the optics are well suited for use as a guide scope which can be mounted on top of a larger telescope and used to take pictures or to guide with.
The Skywatcher AZ-3 is a practical altazimuth mount, easy-to-use and providing good stability.
It can serve as a base for terrestrial or astronomical observing and support telescopes or spotting scopes up to a maximum weight of 5kg (refractors of up to 120mm aperture and reflectors of up to 150mm diameter).
The AZ-3 has horizontal quick adjustment plus a locking screw, and vertical quick adjustment with a slipper clutch. There is fine adjustment with flexible slow motions available on both axes. The tracking is absolutely smooth and sensitive adjustment and allows fine adjustment even at high magnification.
The vertical angle can be adjusted between 50 and 90 degrees, allowing viewing from the horizon up to nearly the zenith and panning 360°. The AZ-3 mount is hence equally suited for terrestrial and astronomical observing. The telescope/spotting scope is mounted via tube ring clamps.
- altazimuth mount allowing 360° panning and adjustable from the horizon to almost the zenith
- vertical rapid adjustment with slipper clutch
- fine adjustment via flexible slow motions
- aluminium tripod - infinitely adjustable from 70cm to 123cm
- entire weight only approx. 3.9kg, including tripod
Included in delivery:
- AZ-3 altazimuth mount
- height-adjustable tripod
This telescope is quite suitable for the first fun exploration of the night sky. Observing the moon is an impressive experience even in a small instrument such as this. The mount also allows terrestrial observing. But you should not expect high performance from a telescope in this price bracket.
A note regarding magnification: Similar telescopes are advertised in many places with magnifications of over 300X or even 600X. Any telescope can theoretically reach these magnifications, but you will not be able to see anything - everything will be blurred! The maximum useful magnification is that at which objects can still just be sharply imaged.
This telescope in an excellent choice for children, but young people of over 10 years of age and adults will definitely get more pleasure out of a Newtonian telescope such as the Omegon 114/900 EQ-1.
It is a good idea to get some idea of how to orient yourself in the night sky by first reading some books on the subject. There are various books available which tell you how to get better acquainted with the night sky.
Tip: Optimal alignment of AZ-3 mount
The AZ-3 mount is well suited for both terrestrial and astronomical observing.
1. Terrestrial observing
For terrestrial observing, just set the telescope in the AZ-3 in a horizontal position. Slightly loosen the tube ring clamps and push the OTA slightly forwards or backwards so that the tube is balanced and does not tip forwards or backwards. Then re-tighten the clamps.
2. Astronomical observing
- loosen you the large side screw and position the OTA pointing upwards at an angle of about 45°.
- loosen the tube ring clamps slightly and slide the OTA forwards or backwards until optimal balance is achieved. It should not tip forwards or backwards.
- then set the OTA in a horizontal position and tighten the locking screw so that the instrument is just prevented from tipping forwards. This ensures an optimal load distribution on the mount.