Finding the perfect gift for an astronomy fanatic is not an elusive dream although it may seem that way at times. One simply needs to assess the intended recipient's stargazing expertise, the buyer's budget, what type of stargazing the astronomer is interested in and where they usually do their observation. Gifts can range from minimal costs to thousands of dollars. Doing a little research into the recipient's true likes and dislikes will be highly beneficial. Why? Because one needs to be aware of the fact that some astronomer fanatics can be very finicky about the equipment they use. You may need to engage them in a conversation about their astronomy needs and so forth. Never spend a fortune on a specific brand of telescope or any astronomy equipment unless you are absolutely certain that the recipient will be delighted with your choice. The following list of gift ideas are the most popular for gift giving. But as mentioned above, a little undercover investigating will have you giving a gift which will be well received instead of sitting in its gift box for years to come.
Telescopes are undoubtedly the most expensive gifts a person can give. The recipient will no doubt have their own personal brand preference. If not, one should read reviews and do some serious research and brand comparison prior to making their gift choice. Many novice astronomers are overwhelmed by the host of telescopes on the market. Your friend or loved one, may be an urban stargazer or a rural stargazer. Therefore their needs will differ. The city dweller has to content with light pollution. With that in mind one could purchase a telescope which is more recommended for urban stargazing. Telescopes with automatic light filters will be greatly received. Reflector telescopes which also incorporate a refractor are highly popular. But one needs to know exactly what the astronomy fanatic is truly wishing to view. Catadioptic telescopes are a great option, these optical telescopes combine specifically shaped mirrors and lenses that have all spherical surfaces. They have a much better degree of error correction and have a wonderful wide field of view.
Astronomy fanatics will be highly appreciative of a good pair of binoculars. Even the amateur astronomy fanatic will need at least one pair of binoculars at the ready. One can make good use of binoculars to learn the star constellations. And one will be utterly amazed at how many more stars they can see through binoculars than they can see with the naked eye. Binoculars are ideal for viewing large open star clusters and huge extended nebulae. In this scenario, binoculars are far better than telescopes.
Planetary Astrophotography Cameras:
Highly popular for gift giving are the Skynyx Planetary Astrophotography cameras. Highlights of these are the Sony CCD sensors which offer excellent sensitivity and extremely rapid frame rates at full resolution with no compression whatsoever. These cameras have been specifically designed with amateur and professional astronomers in mind. They offer 8 0r 12-bits per pixel, low noise for crisp imaging and are ROI and binning supported. The ROI (region of interest feature) make these the ideal gift for astronomy fanatics. The recipient will be in seventh heaven when they view the high quality images these offer. One will capture the most crisp, clear, planetary, lunar and solar images. For more information about planetary Astrophotography cameras please visit www.lumenera.com .
Nothing pleases astronomy fanatics more than a good astronomy book to read in bed. There are a myriad of books available in bookstores, on the Internet and through book clubs. The author highly recommends 'Beyond Earth' for adults. This specific book will help the astronomy fanatic to complete their knowledge and add to their astronomy library. 'Beyond Earth’ is the top astronomy book recommendation. The book is stunningly presented and illustrated, it will take their breath away. This book presents 5,000 years of space exploration. For children, 'Kingdom Of The Sun. A Book of Planets' is the number one option.Children who are astronomy fanatics will love this astronomy book as it will take them on a magical and fun tour of our solar system.
Astronomy Magazine Subscription:
The astronomy fanatic will be grinning like a Cheshire cat when they find that you have given them the gift of a subscription to their favourite astronomy magazine. These can end up becoming collector items and passed on to the recipient’s children down the track. Astronomy magazine subscriptions can be relatively inexpensive but a great option for gift giving.
When one is viewing the magical wonders of the night sky time can certainly pass quickly. Yet one can soon become uncomfortable standing for too long. An observation chair which is easily transported, lightweight and comfortable, will be a very appreciated gift. Provide your friend or loved one with comfort while they enjoy the stars and so forth and they’ll be smiling wide. Ensure that the observation chair is strong and adjustable if possible. Some observation chairs which are specifically designed for stargazing come with very small reflectors on them so that one can find them easily in the dark.
There is a vast array of astronomy software on the market. One of the most popular is the Deepsky software. One can purchase DVD version and down-loadable versions of software which includes up to 410,000 stunning images of deep sky objects. CD versions area available and these offer 10,000 images of deep sky objects as well. One can find out what is visible in the sky right now as well as make good use of an observation planner. But that’s not all, with the Deepsky software the recipient of the astronomy gift will be able to record their observations in a logbook or journal. Software includes a database with well over 726,000 galaxies, Nebula and other space objects. The astronomy fanatic will enjoy the image processing enhancement, viewing, printing and conversion. With interactive star charts, 18 million stars from the Hubble Guide Star catalogue and so much more, Deepsky software will have the astronomy fanatic in stargazer’s heaven.
Astronomy prints will be well received and a very interesting conversation piece. The astronomy fanatic will love to be surrounded by prints of the moon, planets, stars and so forth. These can be relatively inexpensive or extremely expensive. There are a myriad of astronomy prints to suit all budgets. ‘Sky At Night’ is one of the most popular astronomy magazines available these days.
Construct An Observation Platform:
As you can see, there is no end to the vast array of gifts available for the astronomy fanatic. If you have the incentive, you could even construct an observation platform for a gift. Have friends take the astronomy fanatic out for the day. Gather a host of other friends together and construct an observation platform for them in their own backyard. This doesn’t need to be overly expensive. In a sense this can be somewhat like a small lifeguard’s tower. Ensure you have council permission to do so and that the construction is sturdy and safe.