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Everything posted by Piero

  1. Not just older graphic cards, but also not necessarily powerful. My netbook ran Stellarium 12.0 pretty well, but doesn't even want to hear about starting Stellarium 13.0.. But yeah, you are right about the requirements of OpenGL2.. although they should have worked out a solution for backward compatibility instead of just removing the code compatible for older machines
  2. I never used the Tele Vue Pronto, but here are two links you might find useful: http://scopeviews.co.uk/TV%20Pronto.htm http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/134560-unloved-televue-pronto/ Having a short FL, you can get wide field views also with 1.25" eyepieces (e.g. Panoptic 24 or Plossl 32). Tele Vue sells premium products, so I would be surprised it is not good. Piero
  3. Sorry to hear this sad story and for commenting a bit late. I don't know whether my comment may help you, but, unless planets are important for you, have you ever considered a pair of 15x70 binoculars? They are very light and can be easily mounted on a relative cheap light tripod. Using them is extremely easy and you can take them around basically everywhere. What can you see with them? The beauty of a wide field sky! There are plenty of large-medium DSOs that can be seen with them. Sometimes I just enjoy looking at the sky without a specific target in mind and admiring star colours and th
  4. I have a question related to eyepieces combined with short focal (such as the one in this post). Is it better an eyepiece with slightly higher magnification but larger FOV or a bit lower magnification but smaller FOV? For instance, in an F5 telescope 1. A Televue Panoptic 27mm (68 degrees) has magnification=28x, FOV=2.45, exit pupil=5.4mm, eye-relief 19mm, and weight=~500g 2. An Explore Scientific 24mm (82 degrees) has magnification=31x, FOV=2.62, exit pupil=4.8mm and eye-relief 17mm, weight=700g The ES is cheaper than the Televue and, judging from the exit pupil, I'd be tempted to say that t
  5. I use the Deep-Sky Hunter Star Atlas ( http://www.deepskywatch.com/deep-sky-hunter-atlas.html ). You can download it for free and is accurate for my use. As the website reports " 'Deep Sky hunter' is a printable deep sky atlas, designed for serious deep sky observers. It features stars down to 10.2m and DSO down to 14.0m." Otherwise, I guess you need a software. Stellarium is open source and does a good job and if you download the "extra stars", you can see stars down to 18m, I think. Carte du Ciel also offers a nice (deep) view of the sky and its beauties. Piero
  6. I created these star charts which I find useful for navigating between constellations. The place (lat:10 N, long: 0 E) were chosen for representing the most important star links across the northern and southern hemisperes. The time is 12am at equinoxes and solstices. To limit the complexity of the charts. I preferred to only report the names of the brightest stars and the constellation lines, but not the constellation names. The main sky asterisms (winter hexagon, great diamond, summer triangle, and Pegasus square) are also reported. Hope you find useful too. Piero
  7. Thanks for your comment. Slightly off topic: Can I ask you why did you go back to a dobson?
  8. mm.. I think the question should be 'What is your favourite target?' If you can only afford one telescope, I would probably say a dobson 8'' f/6 is a great workaround for both bright and dim targets. Plus, it is portable, easy to use, well-constructed and cheap.
  9. Thanks for your comment. What you said is true about the price, although: AltairSabre = £230 SkyTee2 = £280 Ercole = £319 (discounted, see post above) and all require clamps (or clamps upgrading for the skytee2), tripod, counterweight bar/counterweigths. So, eventually the price can be high! what is surprising to me is that you can get an EQ5 with tripod and 10kg weights for £230, but you have to spend much much more for one of these mounts when their design is simpler...
  10. thanks for your advise, I will consider it and see whether I find a second-hand skytee 2
  11. As far as I read, the SkyTee weights ~5kg, possibly not much, but still 2kgs more than the giros. How did you find the tracking with the ercole at high magnification?
  12. To be honest, I think I would also prefer to have the knobs/cables , but I don't consider fair that a person buys something and then has to replace some part of it because inadequate (saddles). I wouldn't buy a car if I know that I have to change the seats later as they might detaches from the car when driving!
  13. Thanks for your useful comments Chris. And many thanks for pointing out the article on Astronomy Now too! I will get a copy this weekend. How did you find the tracking with the Sabre at high magnifications using the apo 130 (or your N200mm if you tried)? Many thanks again, Piero
  14. Thanks very much Brantuk for your comment. As far as I can see, the Altair Astro seems an excellent mount of quality similar to the Ercole. The skytee-2 with the slow motions is very attractive, although I read mixed reviews about it, mainly about the weak saddles and the grease used which make the mount stiff at mild-cold temperatures. For this reason I am evaluating the giro-mounts, although, I have to say, I wonder how easy tracking is at high magnifications.
  15. I have been studying the features of these two mounts: GIRO- Ercole Weight : 3kg Fixing tripod: (GP/Syntha- D-60mm) Thread M10 and 3/8“ Vertical-Bearing : Polymer Bearing Radial (lubrication free) Horizontal-Bearing : Polymer Bearing Radial and Axial (lubrication free) Material: High strength aluminum alloy on CNC machines Carrying Capacity : Max.10 KG without counterweight bar // Max. 18 KG with counterweight bar // Max.36 KG (2x Telescopes) Price : 379 GBP (Sources: http://www.tele-optic-tecnica.de/mounts.html , http://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/Mounts-Tripods/Alt-Azimuth-Mounts/Tele-Optic
  16. I see now, that's very very nice! Thanks for posting it. How did you find the tracking with that type of mount?
  17. I admit that I like this option too. That was the main reason why I considered the EQ5 rigorously UNPRO: no hassle, no cables, no batteries, but simple observing. The only two reasons why I would select the EQ5 are that 1) allows easier tracking, 2) I found more reviews, 3) as far as I noticed it is cheaper than an equivalent Alt-Azimuth solution. Despite this, I would like to know more about those mounts and tripods, since I think they are a nice solution for pure observation. Can I ask you which model do you have? I read mixed reviews for the SW SkyTee 2 and none for the Altair Sabre AA v2 m
  18. http://www.opticstar.com/Run/Astronomy/Astro-Mounts-Skywatcher.asp?p=0_10_2_0_1 but there are other sources. In any case, I considered that it was over-estimated, and assumed 15kg, as you said.
  19. Since the declared payload capacity for the HEQ5 is 18kg, and assuming that Skywatcher added 3kg for selling more, this would mean that the effective payload capacity is at least 15kg for visual (under-estimation). So 8-9kg for OTA+AP equipment is 50-60% of the maximum payload capacity for that mount. As far as I know, 50-60% is the max for AP. Is it maybe due to the fact that a long OTA (such as the 120ED) needs a heavier mount? Shouldn't be enought to replace the plate supporting the dovetail and potentially the tripod (again, assuming 8-9kg for OTA+AP equipment)?
  20. Just a curiosity I haven't ever done AP in my life, so I apologise if this is a silly question. Did you suggest to consider an EQ6 for imaging, due to the weight of the 120ED or for the additional weight of a heavy (I suppose) AP equipment? I did not specify in the first post, but when I talked about AP, I meant to use a standard DSLR (something like a Canon EOS 350D) and a finderscope 8x50 as autoguider for long exposure. IF one day this additional hobby evolves furthermore, I might consider a CCD (< £1200 current currency, which I think is a light CCD). I guess the total weight would stay
  21. Thank you for your answers. Glad to know that the EQ5 is OK for visual from your point of view. For imaging, the HEQ5 is an option. Have you ever tried the ioptron iE45 for imaging? What do you think of the Giro-type Alt-Azimuth mount with the ED120 Pro? Many thanks again
  22. Hi Everybody, First of all, I thank you all for this forum. There are really many nice discussions to read. This is my first one, and I apologise if it is possibly a trivial question. For years I have own a Newtonian 114mm and I am seriously considering to upgrade it. After months of research, I ended up with the conclusion that the SW Equinox 120ED will give me the type of view that I want to see. Beside this, it is also a great tool for astrophotography, which is something that I would like to try one day. The idea would be to use an EQ5 mount for visual, and buy a second mount (probably the
  23. Piero

    Piero's equipment

    Some photo of my current equipment.
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