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About pbyrne

  • Rank
    Proto Star
  • Birthday 30/12/65

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Dun Laoghaire Ireland
  1. First Light Optics

    Just had my first experience of dealing with First Light Optics. Put the order in Sunday, got an email Tuesday, one item not available, I made an alternative purchase, the package arrived at my door on Thursdsay. Forgot to mention, I live in Ireland, how is that for service? I now where my next purchase will be made. Paul
  2. Binoculars 150 quid budget

    I would always go for the 10x50s, light, no tripod needed and easy to hold. The views they offer are expansive and take in a good chunk of sky. Next up are the 15x70s, just about hand held, especially for short periods of time. Once mounted on a tripod they provide a narrower field, though they will go deeper than the 10s. I also have a pair of 20x90s, though they get used least of all three, heavy, narrow field of view and needing a sturdy tripod, good for fainter objects.
  3. Returning!

    Astronomy, it's like a magnet and keeps dragging your back.
  4. In the end I saw two deals I could not turn down, a 127 Skymax pro and a Celestron 8 inch Newtonian on a Celestron CG-5 mount with powertank. The budget is blown for the time being and the camera will have to wait. Still, plenty of time for observing.
  5. A few eyepieces

    PM sent.
  6. Many thanks for the replies, and I have to say, stunning images, gentlemen. I am thinking I might have to change my stance when it comes to getting an SCT, a 200mm SCT will offer greater resolution than a 127mm mak, right?
  7. I was thinking of a camera such as a ZWO ASI120MC, nightfisher. Looking at Michael's stunning images, this is something I am aiming for. I take what you are saying about the mount and it makes total sense. What camera do you emp!oy?
  8. Hi all OK, I've been bitten by the desire to begin to take photographs of the moon, inspired by images seen on SGL and various other sites. I am a visual observer, binoculars being my thing, dipping my toe into the imaging scene brings with it it's own set of questions as regards the scope, mount, etc. After much trolling of the net, hours of Youtube videos, I have decided that the weapon of choice is the Mak. I have narrowed the choice down to two potential candidates, both of which have their strong points, and some drawbacks. The Skywatcher, Skymax 127 Synscan: I am really impressed by the reviews this mak gets online, the samples of lunar images using this scope have been really bobbling and another attractive feature is the price, £389 at FLO. The downside is that with mount there is very little room for improvement, the range of scopes that can be attached is limited, if I wanted to branch out into serious deep sky imaging I am limited. Also, I would like to attach a R&P focusser and I'm not sure if this can be done. Skywatcher Skymax PRO 150. A serious instrument, great resolution, ability to get really deep into the lunar surface and the producer of outstanding photographs. This scope can be modified to take a R&P focusser. The downside is that this scope is a lot more expensive than the 127, £527 at FLO for the OTA alone. For a scope such as this a mount such as the HEQ-5 or NEQ-6 would be required, adding another £1000 to the budget, and that's before I add cameras, etc. For the addition of another thousand pounds+, will the images I obtain be worth the extra lay out? Here's my final thoughts. The 127 is a great instrument, grab and go, inexpensive and has the ability to take great photos. Also, I can afford it now, the difference in costs will pay for the camera, power source, etc. The 150 is another stunning performer, for the jump in price it had better be, it can be modified with better add ons, the additional costs for the mount are high, however, with regards the mount, the improved mount has the ability to take on a range of heavier scopes, if I should decide to upgrade in the future, I am not limited to smaller instruments. This set up will have to wait until I can cobble together the funds. I am not in a crazy rush to rush out and by the first scope I see, I am more than happy to continue with my binocular observations. One final note, I know that people will be advocating the SCT route, and I understand that, but I want to step down the Mak road, though it doesn't have to be Skywatcher brand. Any and all advice gratefully accepted. Paul
  9. Messier 35

    Lovely details, nice capture. Paul
  10. My Best Clavius and Rutherfurd

    Man, what stunning images, who needs orbiting spacecraft?
  11. CG5 Hand Controller Problem

    Got the necessary cable from ebay and upgraded the hand controller, everything now in working order, happy days.
  12. The Moon and Saturn

    I was looking forward to viewing the trio, Mars is also close by, typical Irish weather and heavy cloud covered the south. Good catch.
  13. Hi guys Down in south Kerry over the weekend, it's the only Gold Tier reserve in the northern hemisphere, as you can imagine, on Friday night the skies were crystal clear, set up the scope, attached all the cables to the CG5 and the message Transmit Data comes up on the hand controller, the mount is effectively dead. I checked out online forums and attempted their solutions, cycling the power, pressing undo repeatedly, nothing, I'm hoping that some of the good folk on this site can offer a solution, especially if you have experienced the same problem. Thanks Paul
  14. Lunar crater Copernicus

    Hi Achim, beautifully rendered. Have you any advice to give to someone who wants to attempt lunar sketching?