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Ian_M

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About Ian_M

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    Nebula

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    Male
  • Location
    Perth, Scotland
  1. Hi, Looking at dithering with my Skywatcher Adventurer Mini (SAM) tracker mount. The latest version of the app has a dithering option that requires an angle (in arcmins) to be entered. Seeking advice/confirmation on how to work out that angle. I am using a Canon 650d (pixel size 4.3um) and a 50mm lens. Bit of trigonometry says to me that each pixel subtends angle of ArcTan(4.3/50000) = 0.3 Arcmin. Read somewhere that with a DSLR you should dither 12 pixels which would be approx 4 Arcmin so I am guessing that this is what I should enter into app. Does that make sense? Any thoughts/commnets greatfully received. Sort of starting from first principles - not sure if they are correct, thoug. Thanks, Ian
  2. Hi, Agree with the others - almost. I bought a second hand Canon 650d (body only) for £160 on ebay in December for use with my Star Adventurer Mini tracker. Successfully imaged Barnard's Loop in orion which was my winter project. Main advantage as far as I am concerned of both 600d and 650d is the articulated screen saves your back and neck as you don't have to contort into wierd positions to see the screen. The 650d has the further advantage that the screen is touch sensitive which, again, makes it easier to change things even when your camera is pointing upwards. Next step is to get it astromodified probabaly with baader filter. Clear Skies, Ian
  3. Ian_M

    Hello

    Hi Toby, Don't have much experience with astrophotography on a reflector scope myself but I would start off simple - take pictures of the moon with your DSLR and scope. It's nice and bright so short exposures may still be OK. Maybe a photo of Venus too. It's nice and bright in the evening. You won't be able to see any surface features but you may be able to make out the phase (Venus has phases just like the moon does). It's always a good idea to wait until you outgrow your equipment before splashing out on new kit. That gives you some experience and then you will have a better idea on what you need to move on. Stick to your DSLR for a while - there are lots of other things to upgrade before you do that (IMHO). First obvious upgrade to me is to a tracking mount so that you can take longer exposure shots but there may be some people out there who have experience with AP with non-motorised mounts. Clear Skies, Ian
  4. Hi Gina, I've got the Raspberry Pi - now all I need is a telescope, mount and CCD camera! Seriously, though, great post Ian
  5. Hi Assuming that it is the same polarscope as on the Skywatcher Adventurer Mini, then what Red Dwarf said is true. The viewing end of the polarscope is threaded. Turning this adjusts the focus of both polaris (or at least a very distant house in my test) and the reticule. I manage a pretty good focus of both. Hope this helps, Ian
  6. Hi Gav, Sorry, don't have experience of both but I own the Star Adventurer Mini. I set myself a winter time task of capturing Barnard's Loop in Orion. I did this successfully using the SAM with an unmodified Canon 650d and a 50mm f/2.8 lens. I stacked about 60 x 2 minute exposures. The mount easily handled this exposure time at 50mm and I guess that one could extrapolate to say that 20s exposure with 300mm would be OK. Looking at YouTube videos I think that the star adventurer (not mini) is much more capable when it comes to longer focal lenghts. I have seeen some nice images with SAM with 100mm lens (check out GWalles' gallery). The advantages of the SAM are it's compactness and, in my opinion, the phone app. This allows you to set tihngs running and leave the system to get on with it. Surely the next version of the Star Adventurer will incorporate wifi connection and this app. Probably not much help, but it helped pass some time for me.......... Ian
  7. Hi, I have the skywatcher advebturer mini pro package. It's a great piece of kit, I tihnk, as long as you realise its limitations. I am after some tips on using it from others. for example I have never used the fine tuning mounting assembly. Is there any real advantage to this? I realise that it means you can do your polar alignment with the camera mounted which is obviously a good thing. Does anyone use it and, if so, is it worth the extra hassle? Any other top tips very welcome. Thanks Ian
  8. Hi, I have recently purchased a SkyWatcher SAM tracking mount. I have a Canon 500d DSLR a Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM lens and a Tamron f/2.8 17-50mm lens. I would like suggestions for good targets for me image and any general advice to a novice. Thanks, Ian
  9. Hi, Thanks everyone - definitely all food for thought. I have used an ED80 with HEQ5 pro mount before with a DSLR camera, imaging Andromeda, Pleides, M42 etc. The Atik infinity looks out of my budget, but the Lodestar is not much more than the modified DSLR. First step might be, however, to use DSLR I already have, freeing up more money for mount/scope. What do you think about the choice of scope and mount? I see some people prefer f/4 or so Newtonians to a refractor. Thanks for you input - its great to hear your opinions. Ian
  10. Thanks, good idea. I have a home made solar filter (of the Baader foil type) that I use with my Dobsonian. Must admit, though, that I find the whole "burn out your retina" risk a bit scary for pupil use - have projected the sun's disk before during eclipse and transit of mercury. Not as nice an image, though. By video route, I take it you mean planetary imaging? Would that require a longer focal length scope in order to get decent magnification? Ian
  11. Hi. I am looking to set up an Astro club at the school I work at. Already have a Dob of my own that we can use so am thinking about an imaging setup. Budget about £2000. Was thinking of HEq5 Pro mount with skywatcher Evostar ED80 pro scope and modified dslr. I have used a similar setup at another school. Would be interested to hear if you think this is the best way to spend the money or would you recommend any changes (mount or scope or whatever). Thanks, ian
  12. Hi Billy, I have a pair of the 15x70s and have had them for about 5 years. I think they are great value. Quality is good for the price. The chap who runs it is very helpful and kindly sent me replacement eye cups when I needed one. I am about to buy another pair of binos - either 10x50 or 7x50 and am seriously looking at Strathspey again. Good luck
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