telescope aperture comparison

Telescope Aperture Comparison: Know the Differences!


Buying a telescope is a hectic job. There are many things to compare before making a final call. And one such thing is the aperture of the telescope. 

So, what’s the difference in various telescope aperture comparisons?

The light-gathering capacity changes with the change in aperture size. Different apertures gather different amounts of light. The 3.5-inch telescope capturing power is very low. At the same time, the 16-inch telescope can collect an enormous amount of light. This makes a great difference in the final image.

To compare different apertures, you must have enough knowledge. I have talked about the details of different apertures below. Please give it a read to understand the topic!

Different Types of Telescope Aperture Comparison 

Aperture sizes are not a constant thing. From Lunt to Coronado telescopes, the aperture varies a lot. Different models offer a great range of aperture sizes for telescopes. Below I have talked about some common sizes to help you.

3.5 Inches Aperture 

This is a very small aperture for a telescope. It can not capture much light, and thus the magnification power decreases simultaneously. 

This type of aperture is used in entry-level telescopes. But they are practically useless.

You can see some planets and moons with a 3.5-inch aperture. Stars and nebulas are completely untraceable by these telescopes

The price of these telescopes is quite low. But due to its incapability, you can lose your interest in astronomy. 

So spending money on such a small aperture telescope is not wise. It will be better to save money and go for a bigger size. 

8 Inches Aperture 

The telescopes with 8 inches apertures fall in the medium-sized group. This group ranges from 4 inches in aperture to 10 inches. The 8 inches is a sweet spot for the telescope aperture.

This size enables the telescope to capture enough light for a decent image. The size of the telescope is also small, and you can move with it. It is very easy to control. So an 8-inch aperture scope is very useful for amateur astronomers.

These products perform very well in taking pictures of the space. You will surely love them.

The price of the telescope increases because of the 8-inch aperture. But the money is completely worth it. If you are new to astronomy, you can go for this telescope.

12 Inches Aperture 

This is another popular aperture size for telescopes. They can magnify any object 610 times more than the human eye. They generate images with excellent resolution compared to the size.

You can disassemble the telescope or fit the entire telescope in your car. The price of 16-inch telescopes also varies, like different ZWO cameras. The prices are around $1200. The price is a little higher than the 8-inch telescopes.

But the cost is quite less than the next version, the 16-inch aperture telescope. So please let me know what you think about this aspect. 

16 Inches Aperture

The 16-inch telescopes have twice the aperture size as the 8-inch telescopes. The light-gathering power increases four times because of this. The magnification power also increases with the increased light-gathering power. 

With this size aperture, the telescope becomes professional. The images have more details. You can observe more far objects in the sky with this scope. This telescope can be moved in a small car without disassembling it. 

The prices are quite high for 16-inch telescopes. For a decent telescope, you will have to pay more than $1500. However, there are cheaper models, but the performance can decrease. 

33, 94, 256 & 410 Inches Aperture 

These telescopes are not for normal uses. They are not sold in the market like the other aperture sizes. Rather they are made specially in different factories. Because of the big size of the aperture, the size increases significantly.

The large aperture telescopes are used for research purposes. Scientists use them to gather data and information about various objects from space. The Spitzer Telescope was launched into space with a 33-inch aperture in 2003.

The Hubble Space Telescope has a big aperture of 94 inches. It was launched in 1990. The James Webb telescope was established in 2021 with a 256-inch aperture. Built-in 2000, the Gran Telescopio Canarias has a whooping 410 inches aperture.

These are some common telescope apertures available for astronomers. There are other varieties too. You can easily make your decision based on the above discussion. 

Could you tell me why Telescope Aperture Comparison is necessary? 

The aperture is important in any telescope-like Celestron Nexstar Evolution 8 and 8HD. Telescope aperture refers to the size of the area through which light enters. This light is used to make the image of the viewing object inside the telescope.

The primary work of the telescope is to observe distant celestial objects. It enables us to view any star or other objects in space. These objects are not completely visible to the human eyes. Telescopes are very useful in making them eye-catching. 

It magnifies the celestial objects. Sufficient light is necessary for this magnification. And this light is captured through the aperture of the telescope. The more the size of the aperture, the more light will enter it. 

And as a result, the magnification power of the telescope also increases. The details of the image also increase significantly. If you are into astrophotography, large apertures will help you to capture high-resolution images.

So a telescope with the biggest aperture will be the best telescope. But that is only sometimes the case. Large apertures can cause some trouble too. You have to consider the problems, too, while comparing apertures.

The size of the telescope increases because of its large aperture. This will make the telescopes immovable. You won’t be able to take your scope on camping trips. This can be a key point for many people. 

Now you can understand the significance of the aperture sizes. You can realize that aperture comparison is very important before buying your first telescope. Only then will you get the best value for money?


Question: Is the 80MM aperture telescope the best?

Answer: No, there are better options than an 80MM aperture telescope. It’s a beginner-level telescope. 80 MM telescopes are good for viewing not-so-distant objects. But they come at low prices. So they are affordable.

Question: What can you see with a 100mm telescope?

Answer: You can see some closer celestial objects with a 100mm telescope. It has a magnitude of 13.6. Several planets from our solar system are visible with it. The moon can be observed too.

Question: How powerful does a telescope have to be to see the rings of Saturn?

Answer: The telescope should be powerful enough to do 25x magnification to see the rings of Saturn. Otherwise, the rings will be partially visible. However, a 3.5-inch telescope can do this magnification. 


This is all I have on telescope aperture comparison. Now you can compare the apertures on your own. Also, you can tell the differences that different apertures bring.

When buying a telescope, don’t focus on the aperture only. There are other important factors too. Could you ensure that the complete telescope package can produce decent images?

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