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About crcooney

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  • Birthday 30/06/91

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  • Interests
    Science, Astronomy, Outdoors, Computers, Learning.
  • Location
    Sicily, Italy
  1. Yeah. Luckily, I was able to see the 3 stars that surround the nebula, and could barely see the nebula visible to my naked eye. This made the difference because the "go-to" on the scope was not targeting well, and after scanning through the ep I came across a huge, bright cluster. I was scanning and thinking "how will I know that I found it?" and then there were many bright points and I said out loud "Oh Ok! there it is" haha. I can't put a number on it but there were "lots" of points (stars). I've heard that you can see a "grey-ish cloud", being the nebula dust itself (under perfect conditions I'm assuming) but I didn't see that. Just a large cluster.
  2. Just got in from my second time out with my scope and successfully found the Rosette nebula, NGC 2237. I'm trying to better my navigation so I spent some of the night gazing but I found that finding the nebula was fairly easy once I got the stars right. Low light pollution where I was at allowed me to see some fairly dim stars and I got to it within a few minutes. Being the first one that I've seen, I couldn't help but think "How will I know that I found it?" but the nice, bright cluster was quite obvious haha. I have a nexstar 8se and was using the 25mm ep that came with it, and I feel that this was fine, but I've read about some people going up to 40mm; what is your preference? I'm looking out for my next ep.
  3. All, Just wanted to see what you guys thought about the Starry Night 7 software. It came with my scope and I thought it would be great. I considered getting the Pro Plus before I found out Celestron gives a copy of 7se with their scopes, but I'm not very impressed with the version that I have, so it makes me wonder if the pricey pro plus would be about the same. I have a Surface pro 4 tablet that I love but after hours of trying to getting the software to install, I gave up and blew the dust off of my old laptop because I knew it would have the proper drivers. SN7 installed and I've been playing around with the program (don't yet have the scope to pc cable for control) but honestly I'm not impressed. My surface has StarWalk 2 that I use as a guide when I'm out observing which I feel is decent (constant compass cal issues). Also, if you can't get microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 on your pc/tablet, know that starry night and the ASCOM control won't install. I would have had to reinstall windows 10 on the surface (among other things) to get the .NET 3.5 drivers to install, which I felt was just too much. I'm very computer literate and it doesn't scare me, but I knew that my 6 year old, falling apart laptop could run it because it has windows 7. It agitates me that the almost $1,000 Surface can't install the older 3.5 driver, but thats the first problem that I've had out of it. What's your thoughts on the software? Any others that you prefer? Also, what other chart & control software is out there? I know of a few, just want to see what the opinions are.
  4. Yeah, it was honestly the best thing that I read haha. Got to peer through the 8se last night and was not disappointed. I got it set it up, looked up and thought "What should be first?" I look over and see Jupiter shining bright, and got it lined up. I was honestly blown away. I also got the cheap celestron 8-24mm zoom ep (a good starter for now until I can get some funds built up for better ep's) that made things a little better. Later on in the night the Moon made a late appearance and I got to see the difference in views from the zoom ep and the 25mm Plods that came with the scope. I definitely saw the plossol difference. Jupiter looked amazing and I saw the 4 moons shining brilliantly. I had the wife with me and she also was amazed.
  5. I looked and looked at countless reviews, forums and "Best Of..." articles every single night for 3 MONTHS, not exaggerating. I wanted to make the best decision and not experience buyer's remorse or wish I would have gotten "that other one" after my purchase. I changed my mind several times; I thought I wanted a refractor...I thought I wanted a Newt...I thought I wanted a dob...I didn't think I wanted a go-to mount...The list goes on. So many choices, so many opinions. And then the light came unexpectedly in the form of yet another random article called "So You Wanna Buy a Telescope... Advice for Beginners". The part that got me says, "Finally, avoid "paralysis-by-analysis." If you spend more than an hour a day reading telescope catalogs, you are probably in this category. Just get something; you'll feel a lot better." After reading that I sat back and thought, "You know what? He's right". So I did. even though I went over my budget I still felt GREAT. My seemingly never-ending search was finally over. Do yourself a favor and JUST GET SOMETHING!! Of course, always do your homework on what your buying first! I settled on the Celestron 8se (not even close to what I originally had in mind). It came in today, and best of all...0 cloud cover predicted tonight! I'm itching for the Sun to hit the horizon as I type this so I can test it out. Best of luck to you all.
  6. Saying a field is a little far. More like on the side of an extremely quiet road next to a field, so very uneven. It would be much easier with a tripod. In a few years yeah, I'll be in my own backyard, then I can get a big ol' dob. My budget is $500-1000. I'll be using my car to transport. From the suggestions and comments on it, I think I've settled on the reflector.
  7. Thanks everyone. What's stopping me from a dob is that I'm not going to be on level ground, I'll be out in a field, so I'm leaning towards a scope with a tripod mount. From what I've gathered, a refractor is for extreme magnification? like viewing specific parts of the moon? while the reflector is for getting smaller views of DSOs?
  8. Good evening everyone, I'm looking into buying my first telescope. Interested in planets and DSOs. I've narrowed it down to 2 scopes: the Orion SkyView Pro 8" reflector and the Celestron Omni XLT 150 refractor. A few people on here highly suggest the SkyView pro 8", but I'm curious as to how much maintenance is going to come with it? I'm American living in Sicily, so it's not easy for me to go to a shop and ask for help! From the price and high ratings of it, it's very appealing. But on the other hand I understand the refractors require almost nothing, just keep the lens clean. Any comments?? Thanks
  9. Thanks for the replies everyone. All the dobsonians I've seen looked like they were only for sitting on a table, So I figured that they would be sort of hard to carry out into a field and use! I'll look into it some more. In the back of my mind, I guessed that about the filter/eyepiece kit. No different than a tool kit in that there's usually only 10 out of 50 tools that you use.
  10. Good morning everyone, Just to start out, a little about me: I'm US Navy stationed in Sicily, Italy, originally from lower Alabama. I've always been an Astronomy geek, pointing out the stars and planets to friends at night....nothing beats a calm, windless, clean night out in the middle of the ocean. Other than what I've picked up over the years sky watching and reading, I've recently finished up my second semester of Astronomy so I have a decent understanding of the sky....but I know bare minimum about telescopes. I never owned my own telescope and it's been a while since I've looked through one. I did some research and almost bought an entry model celestron a few years bac, but didn't. I like to consider myself beyond beginner, so I'm looking for an intermediate level scope. I've done several telescope finders and seen several reviews. On a budget of under $1,000, but would rather stay closer to $500. I want to see the moon yes, but more interested in the planets and deep sky objects. I will be traveling with traveling, I mean driving about an hour or more to get to a nice dark field. With that I've eliminated a dob, as an option. I'm looking for something that will fit in my car, and a grab n' go/no hassle. My main question is does a newtonion/reflector type require much maintenance? like if I pack it up and drive to spot am I going to be fumbling with it in the dark, trying to get a clear picture? I really want something no-hassle and spend more time viewing than aligning. The reflectors get more aperture for the money over refraction type. Astrophotography is possible, once I get more comfortable and can afford it, ill get a mount, but other than that a simple iPhone snap will suffice. That brings me to my next point, I'd like to explore and would rather spend the money for a good view, than the motorized mounts. Are the motorized mounts really worth it? I also planned on getting a eye-piece/filter kit. So, I've narrowed it down to the Celestron Omni XLT 120mm- the entire Omni line keeps popping up best reviewed/high rated lists; The Orion SkyView Pro 8". Like I said I also plan on getting a filter/eyepiece kit. Any other options or are these good?: no-hassle, decent deep sky/good planet view, $500-$1000 budget (including eye-piece kit), fit in a car. It's my first telescope, so I want the best bang for the buck, not a beginner scope. I'm an adept learner so I'm not scared off by non-computerized mounts (and I want to learn to use without it). Thank you for the help!