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Everything posted by JulianFR

  1. Apologies in advance... I realise this question has been asked several times before, but I would appreciate thoughts on budget 10×50 binoculars for astronomy, for portability and to keep in a car. Specifically, which of these would you recommend... Or an alternative?: * Helios Naturesport Plus * Strathspey Marine * Olympus DPS1 Also, is the fact that some binoculars are nitrogen-purged significant beyond keeping the damp out? For instance does it imply better optics or manufacture and is it worth having if there is no intention of being somewhere wet? Many thanks.
  2. Too much cloud here. Again. I had hoped to get some observing in tonight but no chance so off to bed. Should have got out last night (before the clouds rolled in) when I had half a chance.
  3. It's a buzz getting those two isn't it? I found them a couple of times when the supernova was visible. Must admit I did struggle to find them though. Must try again very soon (clouds allowing) ... After I dig out the neck-brace!
  4. I've also found TLAO so helpful. I really appreciate the 'honest' blurry, sometimes tiny, grey sketches. They show me what I WILL see with my Dob, not what I would see if I had access to Hubble and imaging software as so many other guides do. I also really like the S&T Sky Atlas and (as a general reference rather than a sky guide) The Backyard Astronomer.
  5. Thanks for that link... Will take a close look at it for future reference. As an update I looked for the NA nebula again last night through my 15x70s and my ST120 with a 34mm EP. But no joy. I was looking at some black, seemingly starless patches and I 'sense' it was around there... At least part of it. I will carry on with my quest! I did have nice, though very small, views of M3, M13, a very faint (in my 24mm) M51 and an incredibly faint M101. Isn't it strange how the tiny faint smudge of a DSO like M101 or M51 suddenly becomes apparent, almost subliminally?
  6. I need to get a UHC filter by the sound of it. Excuse the dumb question, but could you name some other deep-sky objects it would (or would not) be useful for? I still get confused about what's what in nebulae in terms of viewing ... Ie emission nebulae v other kinds. Incidentally I tried to see the North America last night in clear skies, but nothing. I will persevere.
  7. I've found M4 fairly easily, though its position low in the south is a bit of a challenge from where I observe usually. I haven't managed to make out much detail though. I need to spend more time, and patience, at the eyepiece.
  8. Maybe my ST 120 and a low power EP might show me something. Otherwise my 15 x 70s. Can't wait for the next clear night.
  9. Whoa, that is huge. And a bit like one of those Magic Pictures trying to make it out. Not at all what I would have been looking for. Thanks for the guidance all.
  10. Steve... Wrote before I saw your answer. So binoculars and dark sky. Thanks.
  11. Thanks Rik. What equipment would be better out of interest? My Stargazing for Dummies says it is "... easy to find under dark skies using binoculars or telescope with a wide FOV." Maybe I better stick to my other guides for astronomical info! (Although I wasn't at a really dark sky site, as I said).
  12. The clouds finally cleared in the early hours and I had pretty good views of Cygnus and the Milky Way through my 300 Dob from a not totally dark site. I was hoping to locate the North America nebula using my 34 and 24mm EPs but I wasn't sure what to look for (not the pictures in the mags of course!) and probably gave up too quickly in frustration. Can anyone tell me. What I should expect to see (if anything) through a low power EP ... A grey smudge of some kind, but anything more... Any structure? Thanks in advance.
  13. I've just come back in after a couple of hours outside with the ST 120... It didn't get properly dark till after 11.30 so no real point, for me at least, in taking out the Dob. I also love looking at Lyra and especially M57, even though it's just a tiny grey Cheerio for me in the 120. Nearby Cygnus is a lovely target too, with the Milky Way running through it and Albireo. Pity it's a work day (later) this morning.
  14. I heard it too. Amazing how many professional astronomers like him were helped/encouraged by Sir Patrick Moore.
  15. Just to follow up on Ronin's reply, the Maxvisions from Explore Scientific are super quality/value (I have the 24mm, which I use with the Mak and also the 34mm 2") and also the 18mm BST/Starguider ... BSTs are an excellent upgrade from the stock SW eyepieces that came with the scope. Both Maxvision and BST were highly recommended on SGL by a number of people when I was looking to upgrade my eyepieces.
  16. Hi Daz ... The type of telescope you have (I have the same one) is less well suited to deep sky viewing than, say, a Newtonian reflector/Dobsonian. It gives quite a narrow view and is well suited to planetary observation. Therefore for DSOs you will want lower power eyepieces to give you a wider view. Currently my 24mm and the stock SW 25mm that came with your scope fit that bill. I'm not sure to what extent even lower power eyepieces are also suitable with your Mak (ie 28mm or 30mm-plus) ... More experienced people than I will know. Re what you see, the photos taken with a 127 Mak will have had significant exposure time with sensitive camera sensors and multiple images supported by clever computer processing. Sadly you will never see that just by looking through your telescope ... Your eye just isn't sensitive enough. I have learned (and taken advice from this forum) that it is important to spend time looking at an object to start to pick out detail. lt might be worthwhile to select what DSOs you want to see carefully to suit your scope... So maybe the denser globular clusters such as M3 and M13 ... When you have located these in your low-power eyepiece you can then 'zoom' in with higher powers such as 18mm and 15mm to reveal more of the stellar detail. Just a thought...
  17. Yes, I spent some time looking at Cassiopeia and the environs tonight ... Beautiful, especially the Double Cluster. After I packed up it was higher over the trees around my house so I popped back out quickly with binoculars and used it to find the Andromeda Galaxy ... First time for some while I've seen Andromeda so very welcome.
  18. Last night was clear here but as the moon was very bright I took the ST 120 out instead of the 300 Flextube, which I would have preferred. But it was so good to get out! I didn't find anything (for me) new: concentrated on M3, M13, M57, Albireo etc (planets not so hot in the ST 120 so just cursory glances at Mars and Saturn). Failed miserably again trying to see M51... Too much moon maybe. I did purposely go out at 11.00 to see the ISS through binoculars... Only my second planned viewing. Wow; so graceful and spectacular. I can't think why I have never bothered to watch it before. Must look for an Iridium flare next.
  19. Pondus... It was being able to follow the ISS in my Mak 127 the other night that gave me a real thrill... Brilliant to be able to see the tiny, bright H shape. Isn't it permanent daytime up there with you at the moment?
  20. Thanks both. I also looked for online preferences and found very little info beyond a Cloudy Nights review a couple of years ago (with the comment that the 35mm was better than the 30mm). Robin Wilkey commented that the exit pupil would be significant, so I'm going cold on it. Russell, I am now thinking about the 34mm Maxvision (you pointed out in the other thread I started that the MV 28mm would be too close to my existing 24mm to notice a difference). So as long as the 34/35mm class EPs will be ok with the Flextube I might go for that one (it's a birthday present).
  21. Got it... Thanks Robin. Very helpful as always. I hope to be at June's Swindon Stargazer's meeting so maybe I can corner you there for more tips ;-)
  22. I know NOTHING about the techniques of astro-photography but I love M57 and I really like your image. Wish I could do that. Thanks for sharing.
  23. It's repeated several times this week (just FYI)
  24. Hi... Apologies, I did ask this question elsewhere on SGL but I haven't had an answer so thought I would re-post it on the EP-specific forum (hope that doesn't break any rules!): I'm interested in a low-power EP (ie 30-38mm) for my f4.9 300mm Flextube, but I know that scope is unforgiving of eyepieces. Price is a factor for me. There is a 2" Baader Scopos 35mm for sale on SGL ... But does anyone know if that (quite huge) EP would be ok with an f4.9 Dob viewing-wise? Thanks in advance, Julian
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