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About IanC70

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  1. Looks very nice! The main thing to bear in mind for imaging is that long exposures aren't possible through any alt-az mount - even if it tracked perfectly smoothly, the image will rotate within the field of view. But that doesn't mean you won't be able to get some decent shots though - this was taken using my phone against the eyepiece: https://www.flickr.com/photos/77612978@N08/8672687679/in/set-72157629265855410/lightbox/ And this one was taken with my DSLR at prime focus: https://www.flickr.com/photos/77612978@N08/11297801086/in/set-72157629265855410/lightbox/ Neither are as good as I've seen other people produce, but that's more down to me than the equipment Ian
  2. I was in much the same position about 2 years ago - a roughly £500 budget, wavering between various options & with a slight hankering to do some astrophotography as well. After a lot of reading on sites like this what I discovered was: Don't bother making astrophotography a priority on this budget, it just isn't going to work. That's not to say you have to forget astrophotography altogether, but whatever you buy at this point isn't going to be geared to it.Equatorial mounts are things of beauty, but they're take time to set up properly & can be a pain to use with a newtonian. If you're not going down the astrophotography route, you don't need one. And if you are, the type you need is about double your budget. I was strongly tempted by the same EQ5/200p setup you mention above until I realised the mount is barely up to holding the telescope steady.It's all too easy to forget the extras, like a good selection of eyepieces.Classifieds & Ebay make your budget go so much further if you're prepared to be patient.On the basis of that, and once I'd moved astrophotography out of the equation, the decision was fairly easy: a dob with as wide an aperture as my budget would allow. New, that would have been an 8" or 10" to allow enough cash left over for accessories, but I soon discovered a 12" monster for sale complete with a telrad finder, good selection of eyepieces and sundry extras, at right around my budget. I was sold on it pretty much instantly Two years later I'm happy that was the right decision for me. Set up takes minutes so I can concentrate on viewing (though I sometimes wish I'd gone slightly smaller when I'm lugging it out the garage, the views make it worthwhile!) I'm glad also I didn't get something with a goto system - I enjoy the challenge of navigating to a target unaided. My astrophotography needs meanwhile are being met by a combination of widefield shots using the camera alone, eyepiece shots and the odd prime focus shot (lunar and the odd planet). The results aren't amazing, but getting started this way has made me realise that good results require a serious investment of time and acquiring a lot of skill. Getting up to speed with using tools like Deep Sky Stacker & learning the best techniques for bringing out the best in your images via Photoshop has been fun in itself, but has also made me realise I'd have been wasting my money investing in specific equipment. Once I've learnt more then I may reconsider, assuming I ever have enough spare cash. Anyway, best of luck in what you choose, whatever happens you're going to end up with good new toy
  3. But the point is: Science isn't the set of laws, it's the endeavour of trying to formulate which laws apply & understanding what the implications of them are. If your original laws are found to vary, then you need to expand science to include the invariant law that governs the variation. Until you discover it, then you know the science is incomplete, but you also know that if the invariant law can be determined, then it can be incorporated within the framework of science. In other words - while our understanding of Physics will probably always be incomplete, we can also be sure that any new discoveries about the physical universe can be included in it.
  4. Back to the original question: What if the laws of physics vary across the universe? What you'd then be trying to understand is: How do they vary? What governs how they vary? Can you determine the set of laws the describes the variation? Can you predict the variations for a given location in space or time? Are you able to predict or create a variation locally? And so on... Pretty soon you've expanded physics to include a new set of laws that describe the variation. While our understanding of physics may always be incomplete, it will always encompass what we're able to observe.
  5. If I'm not in the room: the room gets warmer. If I'm in the room: the room gets warmer & most of what was in the fridge mysteriously disappears.
  6. Thanks Raga But if I go for the neq6 my wallet gets punished twice over - once for the mount & again to buy Mrs C something expensive
  7. Hi all, I'm soon to take the plunge with my first scope, but like many I'm struggling to nail down exactly what is I want... Of course what I really want is the mythical scope that'll do everything & for under £1000... But I guess I may be waiting a while for that beast to turn up so in the meantime: I want good visual performance but also to do some basic astrophotography (lunar, planets, perhaps M31, M42 etc. but I don't want to get heavily into DSO - don't have the time or budget to do it justice). Most of my viewing will be from my back garden, which has moderate light pollution. Occasional portability might be nice, but isn't hugely important (my car has a big boot anyway & I'm reasonably fit so unless we're talking something seriously massive this shouldn't be a big issue). I'm gravitating towards either the Skywatcher 150p DS or the 200p DS - my reasoning being that they should offer decent visual performance but will also allow me to attach a DSLR. The 200 was my first choice - but Martin at FLO has pointed me in the direction of the 150 since it'll be easier/cheaper to mount it stably than the 200. To be honest, choosing the mount is giving me a bigger headache than choosing the scope. Buying an NEQ6 would mean I'm pretty much bullet proof against future upgrades, but I'm having difficulty in justifying the cost to myself (let alone trying to justify it to my wife ). An HEQ5 is more within my budget (just) - but although the 150 would be quite happy on it, as I understand it the 200 wouldn't be quite as stable. OTOH if I'm not trying to do long exposure DSO work, that may not matter so much. Finally I think either scope would just about work on an EQ5, but I suspect that would mean that even short exposure work would end up being compromised by stability problems. So it essentially comes down to: The budget choice: a 150p ds (or even the 200?) on an EQ5 & have stability issues The mid range AP choice: a 150p ds on an HEQ5 & have a solid mount but compromise on aperture. The mid range visual choice: a 200p ds on an HEQ5 & have the aperture I'd like but also have some stability issues for imaging. The blow-the-budget choice: a 200p ds on an NEQ6 & hope Mrs C never finds out how much I just spent... Any advice gratefully received! Ian
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