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Everything posted by pvaz

  1. It's the position you're standing in relation to the scope/focuser. If you stand behind the focuser, then stand beside the focuser and then move in front of it (in relation to the tube) the image seams to rotate as you're standing in diferent places. I have noticed this when testing EPs in day time.
  2. +1 for an i5 (or i7) with 8GB RAM. That will handle pretty much anything you throw at it and give you at least 5 years dealing with any software out there. If you ware doing large video files editing, intense gaming and such then an i7 processor and a good graphics card would be nice too, but not at all necessary for still image processing. If you find you want faster startup, app loading and faster large file handling, any computer will benefit from an SSD disk drive, that's more useful then crazy RAM or too much processing capability. Today the most common bottle neck is the hard disk drive's speed, so I find an SSD makes the most noticeable diference in performance. But again, an SSD is not necessary at all, just makes most common operations faster and smoother.
  3. The low power EP always starts the evening and usually it's the one that stays on the scope for longer periods. The main reason for that is that I'm more into DSOs than solar system objects. When I'm observing solar system objects I use mostly 100x up to 240x magnification (that's roughly 12mm to 5mm on my scope).
  4. I just use a cheap small office chair I had laying around. The only thing I did was to remove the arm rests. It's confortable for long periods and the adjustable hight allows you to find a good position, as you point the scope higher or lower in the sky.
  5. If you don't mind I'll give you something to think about: Get one of this as soon as possible: http://www.firstlightoptics.com/dobsonians/skywatcher-skyliner-200p-dobsonian.html Then get the HEQ5 later this year and move the scope from the dobsonian mount onto the EQ. You'll need to fit it with some mounting rings. You'll be able to learn your way around the sky with the dob, so when you add the EQ later in the year, you won't be starting from scratch. The only inconvenient of this, is that the dob 200p version haves a higher f ratio.
  6. As said above you can. It's bright and easy to spot but it's a summer object. It appears somewhat low in the south so it may be a bit tricky up in the UK but here in Portugal it's an easy object. As any other nebula, it won't show in red like the pictures but you'll notice hints of stucture, specially with the aid of an OIII filter. Maybe with an UHC as well, but I only have the OIII so I can't garantee that.
  7. Personally I would try to get a used 13mm t6 nagler. TV holds its price better and is always on demand, so it's easier to sell if you ever upgrade.
  8. I have to disagree. The thing is the quality products go fast while the bad ones linger on. I have bought most of my EPs from there and they're pretty much top quality products. You just need to know what you're looking for, check the site about once or twice a day and be willing to pay a resonable price for it. For top quality items that's usually 70-80%. If you want to get a major bargain on Televue items and such then you won't have much luck as there's always someone willing to pay a decent value for them.
  9. O bought mine from the US. Hotech would fix it for free but I would have to cover shipping both ways. That's about 65$ and I decided not to waste more money on it. I get good collimation with a Cheshire.
  10. Maybe so, after my experience with the OIII and many reports here confirming the low improvement under dark skies, I never got around to order an UHC. I mean, still courious about trying one but not too eager. I guess it's one of those things you really need to try and make your own mind about it. On excelent nights, with good transperancy I'm able to see mag 6+ stars with direct vision, so that may be the reason for the little improvement. Except for the veil nebula, on that particular object it makes a huge diference! I guess it's because it haves the rich star fields of the milky way behind and the filter cuts that light down allowing you to actually see the nabula.
  11. My personal experience with an OIII filter in good dark skies, is that it makes some barelly visible Nebulas better. The one I found to benefit the most is the veil nebula. On bright nebulas, such as M42, M16, M8 it doesn't really appear to make much of a difference other then the green tint and dimmer star fields around the object. PS-> I do believe they make a lot of difference in light polluted areas, it seams logical as they cut down most light except for the predominant light emited by this nebulas, but I never used it in such conditions.
  12. When you try to average the cost per session they are quite expensive. I've trimmed my collection down to the essential 2 Ethos and a barlow. Last year I sold a 31mm T5 nagler to fund some canon L lenses and recently I postponed getting a 16" dob and got a US made fender bass and a stratocaster for a bit less. In just a few months those have seen more use then all my astro gear over 3 years...
  13. This reminds me of a quote I read somewhere: "There are 10 kind of people in the world. The ones that understand binary and the ones who don't."
  14. Toke me a little over a year. Mind you, I have very dark skies in my backyard which makes it a lot easier.
  15. As you're just starting, a sturdy mount (HEQ5) and a decent doublet should be more then enough. You can see excelent pictures with this setup. Your next addon should be a guidding setup as it will make a bigger impact on the final results, then a triplet. A small fast newt will require perfect collimation. Usually people end up buying expensive collimation aids for that. Once you know how much time and effort it takes to make an image and if you find it's worth stepping up to a tripplet, you can easily resell the ED80. If you get a used one, you'll probably get all your money back. Olly's advice is great, but keep in mind he runs a lodge in South France where he makes a profit from tourists wanting to spend some relaxing days enjoying the country by day and stargazing at night, so whatever he spends on astro gear is a profitable investment and he probably gets a lot more clear nights there, then you will in the UK.
  16. Yeah, just checked and its only a little over an fstop from f/7 to f/11. For some reason I thought it was closer to 2 full stops.
  17. It's the other way around. The lowest the focal ratio, the fastest it is for a camera to get exposure. Say if you have an f/7 frac and take a 5 min sub with it, you would need to make a 20 min exposure with the f/11 SCT to get the same amount of light. Thus the name "fast" for scopes (or lenses) with low focal ratios. In practice, everytime you move up one fstop you half the mount of light you get. For more details: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F-number#Stops.2C_f-stop_conventions.2C_and_exposure SCTs are better for planetary imaging. Planets are bright so you won't need long exposure and the added focal lenght lets you achive a good magnification for planets without using many barlows. The extra apperture (per €) also gives it better resolution at high magnifications.
  18. BTW the cheapest most popular setup for AP, is a Skywatcher ED80 refractor and an HEQ5 mount. Just to save you some research. You can average the gear used if you browse the deep sky imaging section. Most people post the specs for their shots and most have their gear listed in the signature.
  19. Non APO refractors make diferent colors focus at diferent points and cause a problem known as color aberration (to keep with the acronyms, CA ). This can be avoided with better corrected (Apochromatic) refractors. They are a fair bit more expensive then achromat refractors.
  20. About the boxes, I can't recall but would guess 30 to 35kg total. 1,5 meters long by 25cm square for the OTA box, maybe 40cm square by 20cm height for the base.
  21. Orion is owned by Synta and is mainly focused on the US market. Synta haves SkyWatcher for the rest of the world, so it should be easier to find their 8" dob. I found this after I had bought my XT8 and I could have saved money if I had done my research better and found about SkyWatcher scopes.
  22. The 250px is a great scope, but make sure you see one before you buy. Like any dob it is fast to setup but will need at least 30min cool down time to provide good views at high magnifications. It's big and heavy but most people can easilly carry it in 1 piece. If for some reason (back problems, etc) you can't, then a 8" or 6" might be easier to carry and that will make you use it more often.
  23. Seams a great choice. I been thinking about a Baader Zoom for the same reasons.
  24. If I had an f/7 and was not planning to go bellow f/5 on future purchases, I reckon a full set of SkyWatcher Nirvanas would probably be the wisest option (cost/performance).
  25. A while back I had the same problem I wanted a small set of top quality EPs but I have other hobbies (music and photography) and all of them can be pretty expensive. With that in mind I decided to use a barlow in my set. A good barlow won't affect the views but will add weight. My 1st quality set was: - Antares 1.6x 2" barlow - TV Nagler 31mm (19mm barlowed) - TV Ethos 21mm (13mm barlowed) - TV Ethos 10mm (6mm barlowed) After a year or so I decided to sell the Nagler as the field of view was not that much bigger then the 21mm Ethos and, as I plan to get a 16" f/4.4 dob, it would produce a 7.05mm Exit Pupil. The money went instead to a camera lens that gets much more use. I do mostly DSOs so most nights I only get the 21mm Ethos and the barlow out of the EP case, unless I'm observing bright planetary nebulae or globular clusters, then the 10mm comes handy. For high power I also have a set of Baader Genuine Orthos, which are very good for that job and cheap (at least when compared to Ethos). PS-> Except for 1 of the BGOs and the barlow I got all this 2nd hand in excellent condition.
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