Does M31 look like a bright star or a grey cloud through a set of bins?

Update:

Thanks for the answers.

I was looking at the right object after all!

Would I be right thinking that the grey smudge is solely light from the centre of the galaxy and not the whole spiraling cloud surrounding it?

3 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    6 years ago

    M31 does not have a stellar appearance but rather a nebulous one. It is enormous!

    I personally never saw dark lanes through binoculars, but one night at a star party I saw a huge oval cloud. I waited for it to drift away but it never did. Then I realized it was the Andromeda Galaxy! I was simply stunned how huge and how bright it was. This was all naked eye.

    For good views of the dark lanes I think a 14-inch telescope or larger is really necessary. They might show up in a pair of comet hunting binoculars in a really dark sky- I never tried.

  • With a 10x50 you can just make out the spiral portion of M31 on a dark night, which is quite wide. But instantly recognizable is the core, which appears as a small elongated fuzzy patch of light.

  • 6 years ago

    It look as a small patch of cloud by naked eye in dark nights.

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