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Everything posted by upahill

  1. I think I would want more clarity on what updates are being provided. If I buy version x today for $149 and opt out of subcribing will I still get bug fixes, minor updates etc or am I stuck forever more at that state? What grace period is there to opt in to the subscription if in 6 months I decide I want to stick to SGP for a significant amount of time. I must admit I thought it was two concurrent payments, eg $210 for year 1, have just seen that the $59 is first payable on the second year of ownership which isn't as bad but still unplanned for and a sizeable chunk out of the astro toy budget each year. But.... At the end of the day its less than a latte and slice of cake each month. Maybe sacrifices have to be made 🙄🍰 hopefully the developers make it worthwhile and retain their userbase.
  2. I was planning on switching to SGP this winter as I wanted a little more than my current set up could give me (including the dome automation stuff for when I get around to it) but I think im going to pass now and try my hand with EKOS again. I think SGP would be the easier and arguably better option but I have come to dislike subscription models lately. A recent cull of "small subscriptions" has saved me hundreds of pounds a year, and whilst this would be less than say Netflix or Amazon prime I just can't see it as being worth it when combined with a rather steep entry price for a new user too. To switch to a subscription model is understandable, and if they can justify the ongoing fees to the user base then good on them - but to build a large upfront cost in as well seems a little steep and I think will seriously limit the number of new users that come their way.
  3. upahill


  4. upahill


    From the album: Neowise

  5. Finally back in the saddle after too long away from astro and projects. Looks like I have some catching up to do!

  6. After quite a long break this year from astro I decided to get the kit dusted off and the obsy cleaned out again. The project has been delayed whilst other projects took priority and whilst I still have a few of those to finish off I can start thinking about the dome automation again and finishing up with the fibreglass repairs to the walls. But before all of that the wheels are the next project I think. Will post some photos of the improvements tonight after the last few have been replaced. I did however manage to get what I think is probably the first "proper" shot from the obsy last night though - just a quick test run on Andromeda. So feeling like im getting back on the horse a bit.
  7. I have been having a lot of Huel lately for various reasons. It's a great meal alternative for me, but I have zero interested in them finding a way to package it to look like a MacDonalds... I think becoming less obssesed about what the food looks like will be better overall, less fancy packaging, less food wastage due to imperfections etc. Might even shift the focus to whats actually important such as the contents of the food.
  8. We are fortunately quite high up, so other than the rains washing away the lane and leaving all vehicles bar the 4x4 stranded its not been too bad for us, the mobile homes by that bridge came within a few cm of flooding though and a lot of the lower down properties did get washed out. With the bridge closed for 48 hours I didnt go via Tintern for any trips but I imagine it was pretty bad, Ross, whitchurch etc were all flooding at one stage, only been here 8 years but havent seen that before.
  9. I too was thinking about Lucksall. The river at Monmouth hit 7.14m, the previous record (200 years) was 6.4m. Stood on the A40 inches from the water, when usually there are usually two fields between the A40 and the river reminded me of being on the bank at the last star party 😬 It's still freakishly high now, but receding at least. Hopefully lucksall recover well, but Im sure they are well prepared for it now.
  10. I can highly recommend the silicone socks too for keeping the heatblocks/nozzles fairly clean externally. Got mine included with the E3D kit, but available for a variety of hotends on eBay.
  11. I have been going over the same decision back and forth for most of the summer. Everything I read seems to point me towards the 1600, and it does seem the most popular by far but the 183 is a much more attractive price. Adam mentioning the filter sizes is reassuring to me as I went for 36mm just in case (I have the filters and ZWO wheel ready, just havent got the camera) I could be wrong, but I think the imaging scale is slightly different, with the 183 being better suited to shorter focal lengths - but im tired and might have that backwards. This swayed me toward the 183 for some time as im shooting at 420mm but if I wanted to switch to a different scope I felt it would limit me. Edit: To check suitability with various potential future scopes I used this tool - https://astronomy.tools/calculators/ccd_suitability
  12. Mostly funds and not being able to buy x/y/z to fix a problem or improve something. Add in UK weather, work schedules, depression (especially during winter when its so bloomin' grey out), family commitments etc and im amazed im still at it. My obsy has helped, my setup time is now 10 minutes, no carrying anything around, no more polar aligning every night. But the real winner is when the clouds come in, instead of knowing I have an hours worth of packing up it takes a few minutes to close the shutter and im doing something else instead of dwelling on the lost night 👍
  13. I have 14tb of spinning rust at the moment, unraid parity protection is the only backup strategy I have - critical stuff is backed up to a seperate spinning drive, and offsite storage though. A critical failure, fire etc would lose me about half of it 😐 Have been tempted to switch it all to SSD but still not quite cheap enough. Since none of it is accessed often (and when it is I can wait) the speed isn't really an advantage worth the premium yet. I was contemplating a NAS in the Amazon Black Friday sale - purely to rip the drives out of but 24TB was £390! About the same price I paid for my first 500MB hard drive.
  14. It would depend on what he wants to get from the hobby really. If he is interested in learning his way around the night sky and astronomy in general then a manual scope could be a good move, if he just wants to see some cool stuff then a GOTO takes some of the pain out of the initial learning curve. Out of the two the Meade would be my choice, its computerised so more likely to be usable "out of the box" so to speak. The Helios looks a little undermounted to me and whilst would work, might introduce more frustration than necessary. That said if you want most aperture for your money, along with simplicity then something like a Skyliner 150P dobsonian telescope would give good results. Buying second hand could get you a 200P for similar money. No computers involved as its a manual 'push around' type. Easy to use and great for learning the sky. Hopefully more experienced people will make some more specific reccomendations
  15. Out of curiosity do these suffer from the same delay problems as mentioned earlier?
  16. I went down the 36mm route because of the same concerns. Didn't want to buy something too small, but couldnt quite justify the 2" filters. I now have a ZWO 7x36 with Baader 36mm Unmounted filters - can't comment on them as haven't used them yet, but from what I could gather they would give me a wide range of scope/cam combinations in the future if I wanted to change setup. The most likely candidate for my camera is the ASI1600 so it made sense to get the ZWO stuff too. Weirdly I had never considered hooking up the slr to that combo though - or even if its possible. 🤔 The quadband DSLR filter is a good idea though if it will be a while before getting a dedicated astro camera. I have heard some pretty high praise for the AltairAstro ones.
  17. If it was me I would go for guiding. Makes life so much easier and polar alignment is rarely perfect so if you are setting up each time, having guiding can really help. You could maybe get a clip in light polution filter for the dslr. The path I chose was Mount -> OTA -> DSLR -> Guiding -> Focus -> Filter Wheel -> Filters -------> Next step is a decent camera.
  18. Scary, does sound like a damaged strap though. I have been wondering about my DIY one and thinking it has little protection so will be ordering some inline fuse holders I think. Something like this maybe? In a perfect world I guess the controllers would have fuses built in, but no harm in adding one between the controller and strap, especially if it saves other stuff connected.
  19. Small job struck off the list. Took advantage of the Black Friday sale to grab some more alexa devices. Including a Echo Show 5 for the bedroom and 8 for the lounge. One of which came bundled with one of the NEOS cams I wanted to try out. Now, "Alexa, show me the observatory" brings this up on the displays. I also get cloud storage of events and push notifications. There is a software switch for the night vision IR so I can disable them when imaging too. Fairly happy with the angle and brightness given it is pitch black in there right now. Im not a big fan of the integrated mount it came with as I just cant seem to get the right angle on it, but its propped up for now and ill print a new one. One downside is the camera seems to be streaming to the NEOS website, and then back down to the alexa devices - on a slow connection this is a bit of a pain and can give some buffering issues. The app is a little laggy to load as it forms this connection too which is making me want to reconsider other (much more expensive options) but as a quick "is it on the floor?" check this is perfect.
  20. They are, although I confess I never finished mine, ended up going down the OXCNC route using OpenBuilds hardware. Almost finished the build and get a larger 4'x4' area to play with Although the RootCNC can get pretty big if you want to.
  21. Probably not the answer you are looking for but I would steer clear unless it was 100% for fun project use. The rigidity needed for CNC is overkill for 3D printing, the dust/debris from CNC will not to a 3D printer/laser any good. The movement from a CNC will throw a laser out of alignment. It's a pain - I have all three in various states of disrepair at the moment and the thought of combining them all into one machine is appealing - but having used all three I just can't see the interoperability ever being ideal. However..... Machines like the Snapmaker are kind of strictly hobby only. The CNC is more of a carving module so im assuming you wont be trying to mill alluminium, the 3D print head appears to be a single nozzle and the laser is engraving light duty only so not really going to be cutting anything much thicker than card. Get yourself a good air compressor for cleaning out between jobs and you will probably be fine. If you are happy to limit what you make to the sort of projects shown on their website then they are a great space saver. And they probably come with a custom software to make the whole process a bit easier than trying to learn how to use three different machines. If it was me though I would get a 3D printer, and build something like the RootCNC or MPCNC to complement it, this could also have a 4W laser diode or similar strapped to it. This would be slightly cheaper, allow you to do more but have a much steeper learning curve. Just my thoughts. My wife values the alone time when im pottering in the barn, so actively encourages 🤣 Maybe show her all the amazing, practical things that can be made on Pinterest...... works for me (sometimes)
  22. Maybe this is the solution.... Stylish and practical 🤣
  23. I had contemplated gravel but since the path has to cross the lawn it will make mowing a pain. I need something I can drive the mower straight over so its likely to be sunken stepping stones. Good point with the deck though, I will probably do something just outside the door, and on the future step to help provide a bit of grip. #80 sandpaper strips glued to it perhaps
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