This is my first time here. I somehow got the urge to buy myself a telescope a couple of days ago. I've been looking into getting one ever since and i've started saving. The problem is, I'm clueless as to what to get. I'm pretty sure though that i want a telescope instead of trying to start off with binoculars.
After some looking into it, I figured that I should get a goto telescope. I realize that having a goto telescope is not the best way to go about learning the night sky, but the truth of the matter is, I'm not sure I have the time/patience/desire to learn the night sky. I just want to be able to enjoy the scenery. Therefore, I DO want to be able to see the scenery. That is, I don't want a telescope where the only thing i'll be seeing are planets and their moons. I want, hopefully, to see some deep sky stuff. But, I'm assuming that since I've never actually looked into a telescope before, that anything I see (including the crators on the moon) will be spectacular - it's just that i don't want to be bored after the first two weeks of having my telescope seeing the same things over and over again.
That is why I'm thinking that having a goto telescope (to both find and track objects) seems cool. I was really interested in bushnell's telescopes because they provide real voice output (RVO) and although it may be a it tacky, I think it would be perfect for me: it's a goto telescope (so it finds and tracks objects) and it tells me what I'm looking at (ok so I'm lazy, what can i say?).
However, although the telescope didn't get great reviews from folks at amazon.com. Ok, so I'm not an expert at researching, but I find customer reviews at least very persuasive in a purchase decision - b/c all the companies tells you their telescopes are the best.
I've read several do's and don'ts about buying a telescope (like not getting any from a department store and the bigger the aperture the better). But, I can't make up my mind. I was considering the orion's Skyquest XT8 Dobsonian Reflector Telescope but I don't think that is a goto telescope - presumably I would get the object locator with any orion telescope if it doesn't automatically come with it.
Of course, I'm concerned about ease of setup and portability like anyone else. Like I said, I really want to spend most of my time viewing the sky. I don't expect to take many excursions (probably put a dent into trying to view deep sky stuff). I just want a reliable telescope (ie, I don't waste my money) that can provide me with bright colorful imagery and that i can probably keep for a while (at least a couple of years).
I will gladly take suggestions.
By the way, sometimes my head hurts just thinking about astronomical lingo. But, I do have a quick question: if a telescope has 150mm aperture, how can I tell if that's like 3.1, 4.5, 6, 8, or 10 aperture presumably in inches. Is that a straight forward calculation such that a 150 mm aperture would have a 5.9 aperture measured in inches? It's just a 6 or an 8 aperture would allow me to see more stuff but won't be too bulky or too expensive.
As far as price range, I don't want to go over $500, but will be willing to bite an extra $100 or so if the equipment I'm getting won't be a disappointment.
So, I guess my questions are (since i've done enough rambling):
1. What goto computer (if any) would you recommend for a better?
2. In your opinion, how reliable, dependable, and enjoyable is the bushnell RVO series?
3. What are your otherwise recommendations or considerations for me in my quest to get a good, reliable computer where I can finally enjoy the heavens?
Thanks for your help.
FYI, I wear glasses - in case that makes a difference, and like I said before, I'm a noob to this.
Lastly (and i'll shut up now), it's 2:16 a.m. in the morning and I just found your site. So, if this is a topic that's discussed frequently, I'm sorry. I'll do some searches tomorrow, but i figured I'll post here first.