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philhas

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Everything posted by philhas

  1. I have to agree with this (I am guilty as well), I just got a new tripod for my camera which I am told is made in Italy at the Manfrotto factory. The quality is unbelievable, fit and finish is perfect and its CNC machined out of aluminium alloy billet, everything just works as it should. If I put this up against the AZ4-2 I bought this year there is absolutely no comparison, one of the legs on the AZ4 just sticks when pulling it out (slightly oval), it was supplied with a southern hemisphere degrees dial so as much use as a chocolate teapot and if you loosen the clutches it feels a bit lumpy and sticks, the fit and finish is just adequate with its ready chipped paintwork flaking off and its poor quality leg locking screws. Okay I doubt I could mount the Evostar 120 on the photo tripod however I have mounted the 15x70 Helios no problem and suspect it will take my 80mm F5 Refractor easily as its limit is 8Kg. It even comes with a sprung loaded hook for adding extra weight underneath, this quality product costs £69.95 against the £177 I paid for the AZ4....is the AZ4 worth £100 more? I am not sure it is.....Its not a direct comparison but really to illustrate the point that we do seem to be getting sub-standard quality in the astronomy market for the money and worse still some people appear to except this as the norm. I don't have an EQ8 but have a number of Skywatcher products and only one of them has lived up to expectations for the money and that was the ST-80 (the Evostar 120 came complete with tube blackening flaked off and stuck to the optics internally) I suspect all this acceptance boils down to the fix it and fettle nature of amateur astronomers which in a way is part of the enjoyment of the hobby however a point must come were this is unacceptable and the enjoyment starts to leave. P
  2. Thanks for the Xmas present! Installed and working lovely. Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  3. Purchase a 4 CH DVR to free my PC from video capture duties....That might spur me on to get a couple more cameras to fill the capacity :-)
  4. Living in North Tyneside we have had LED lights for at least a year and it is a vast improvement. The council are now looking to dim them after midnight and turn off some as well to save money. I still see an orange glow from Newcastle so I guess the council there hasn't got with the program yet. Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  5. That's Cumbria for you Ron, mind you its not much better over here. I tend to just use bino's now in-between the breaks in the cloud.
  6. A common theme on Achro versus APO is when you start chucking magnification at them. My Evostar 120 is a good scope however when I up the mag it slowly but surely loses definition and contrast, from reports on here the APO's just keep delivering at high magnifiction conditions permitting of course.
  7. At least you gave it your best shot James. Walking back from a night out the sky up here is clear however everything is sopping wet with dew Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  8. I have a set of Quantum 4's, not used the scopes since I got them in fact I am thinking of selling both the scopes as I just don't get the time to set them up. The view thought the Quant's are superb for the money and you can just about hand hold them although on a monopod with trigger grip they are great Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  9. I doubt there was no light pollution, did they get away from the main tourist areas? A friend of mine goes to Tilos (small greek island) which is much less well known than kefalonia and he says the views are stunning.
  10. Off South America South of the Falklands apparantly
  11. Last time I went it was snowing however it was still a great night with a talk and slide show. Luckily for me it only 45 miles away although its a interesting drive in poor weather! Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  12. You could use a PIR connected to a buzzer in the house. That combined with a 3 Wood and the dog should solve your problem without needing the light!Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  13. And I forgot to say thanks for the replies! Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  14. I have a metal dovetail setup which I made myself as the scope came on an EQ1. I use it on an AZ4 which isn't portable so would like to attach it to a Velbon photo tripod for grab and go so I guess I need the oblong block with rings to secure it to the tripod? Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  15. The SLT controller supports EQ North or South Alignment so technically you could put it on a wedge and polar align it. Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk now Free
  16. Any one know where I can get a tripod mount for my ST80? I just need a bar which I can screw to the tripod. Thanks Phil Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk now Free
  17. One things for sure they had a lucky escape.
  18. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-24551407
  19. Can't stand Linux and I have a Canon! :-) Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk now Free
  20. 20 for me Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk now Free
  21. Its a Sony CCD board camera, was £30 off eBay a year or so ago. Came with a dome housing and x1024 integration if required. Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk now Free
  22. Fully agree, I have two refractors and use the Helios 15x70 bino's the most. No setup time, easy to transport and fantastic views, idea for dodging the clouds and on those rare clear nights I have the scopes.Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk now Free
  23. Just received a shiny 2.1mm lens from Hong Kong for my sky cam, seems to give a nice wide angle. Might need to adjust the focus a bit later if I get some clear skies.
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