- Spiral-bound: 264 pages
- Publisher: Cambridge University Press; Field ed. edition (February 9, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1107503396
- ISBN-13: 978-1107503397
- Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 1.1 x 11.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 26 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #103,382 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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interstellarum Deep Sky Atlas: Field Edition Field ed. Edition
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"... if you enjoy a detailed, well-thought-out paper atlas, I urge you to consider the interstellarum Deep Sky Atlas. It combines all the best attributes of the three most popular atlases already available in our hobby, all the while eliminating many negatives. It's compact and lightweight. It has a substantial number of objects and catalogs plotted, and it's geared towards observers of all levels. It brings a novel method of categorizing deep-sky objects that proves quite effective, and it has the durability and indestructibility of an M1 tank and will last forever. What's not to love?"
Dragan Nikin, Astronomy Technology Today
This revolutionary deep sky atlas, designed with the practical observer in mind, shows all deep sky objects according to their actual telescopic visibility, in 4-, 8- and 12-inch telescopes. Spiral-bound and printed in color on fully waterproof material, this innovative atlas is the only star atlas you'll ever need.
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Although computerized star atlases are fast replacing their paper predecessors, there is still a place for a printed star atlas, which is why the German language version of this one sold out in Europe.
It seems to have just the right amount of detail, includes constellation lines, which I find very helpful, spiral bound, so will lay flat when open, or you can even fold it back on itself so it only takes up the space of one open page. None of the color codes are in red, so they will all show up under a red light (if you elect to take it outdoors, although there is a field edition for that use). There is a bit of overlap between the pages making it easier to follow from one page to the connecting page.
Deep sky objects are shaded according to how visible they should appear in various aperture telescopes - 4 inch, 8 inch, 12 inch, and greater than 12 inch. I would take these classifications with a grain (or two) of salt. The author states that the classifications are based on what can be seen under a reasonably dark rural sky. For example, the California Nebula, NGC 1499, is shown as visible in a 4 inch telescope. Perhaps. Yet in consulting the "Night Sky Observer's Guide Volume 1" it states that NGC 1499, even for 8 to 10 inch scopes, "...is very disappointing and difficult to detect visually." (There is not even an entry for 4 to 6 inch scopes, as there is for other deep sky objects when appropriate).
This is not to say that the classification provided by this Atlas is not valuable. It is, and it is the first time a star atlas has provided any such aid for deep sky objects. I am just saying that it is always wise to consult another source when in doubt.
The Atlas has numerous other useful features as well. A number of nebulas have a small symbol attached which indicates which filter you should use for best viewing. The size of the deep sky object is proportional to the visual size of the object in the sky. Double stars are indicated by symbols showing the separation, position angle, and magnitude (brightness) difference between the two stars. All of this is valuable information for observers. A reviewer in one of the astronomy forums went out with the atlas for a night of observations and found all of the double stars that he checked to be correct in the Atlas.
So, without a doubt, the very best star atlas to become available in years. Highly recommended.
As I write this review the Sky & Telescope Pocket Sky Atlas Jumbo Edition sits next to my copy of Interstellarum's Deep Sky Atlas: Field Edition. The S&T book, for the price, has very similar star charts and I think for those of you looking for a more affordable option you might want to consider saving well over $100 on something less pricey. Does S&T's book have the same depth of information? No but for those of you wanting decent charts you can view with a red light in the field then there are more affordable options. If you want a really detailed deep sky atlas that covers a lot more then Interstellarum's DSA is what you want. I use the book both inside for detailed planning so my nights outdoors are used efficiently. I do feel that both books provide anyone really good information in a nice, easy to use format. I will also say that the water resistant print of DSA is much nicer and will certainly last longer than S&T's cheaper alternative.
So again great item I just feel it is a bit over priced. I would have gladly shelled out half the cost but regardless I'm still very pleased with it. I would also encourage you to go to their website and see the couple example star charts so you know what to expect.
It has been more pleasing to me looking at star charts on paper than trying to use star-map type apps on the phone or iPad when not actively looking at the sky. I can't imagine needing a more sophisticated star atlas at my level and from the looks of the more comprehensive on the market (and there are only a few) this was the most pleasing to look at and the most current.