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Mr niall

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Everything posted by Mr niall

  1. You'll get fab results all the way up to 200mm with the star adventurer - the 50mm lens is perfect. If its the one I'm thinking of it works better at about f2 than wide open though. The SLT102 is great for lunar and planets but the focal length is much too long for general purpose deep sky photography so it doesnt mean you are doing anything wrong its just not the best scope for that sort of application. There's a thread in the imaging section for users of the star adventurer that showcases what you can do. But yes - you can achieve some great results with just the dslr and lenses you have already.
  2. Hello there Omegon Minitrack - bought about 6 weeks ago for my son as he expressed an interest in getting into astrophotography, so thought it would be nice for us both to have a setup we could use. He has now decided that "it's a bit complicated" and didnt realise the work involved, so we'll stick with visual for now! Essentially new - used in anger twice. Quite impressive actually - heavier than it looks and was banging out 90 second subs at 50mm with only the vaguest of polar alignments (that was LP limited - no doubt it could go much longer) All original parts and original packaging included. £65 plus postage - about £5 tracked I'd guess, its a small box but a surprisingly heavy unit as its all metal.
  3. That’s handy - but I think you’d still want a Barlow for the moon, I’ve shot it at 1200mm through a small mak and it’s still relatively small...
  4. That would certainly work well for lunar - yes you just remove lens and fit the t2 ring as if it’s a lens. Then screw the Barlow into the inside of the t2 lens. Dead easy.
  5. While I agree with the posts above I'd have to say that the best instructional tool I used was the book Turn Left At Orion - as it provides more advice for star hopping and using visual references than anything else I've seen. In fact, I don't think there's very many things out there that do a really good job of teaching you how to get around as well as that book.
  6. That's a great shot - I actually don't think I've ever seen Bode's galaxy this close up before - usually used to it being a teeny teeny grey smudge through my eyepiece (also a pleasant experience of course!)
  7. No its sold its in the teeny tiny bit under "edited" haha
  8. I used that exact setup for a while! I managed to get 60sec at 300mm with a good polar alignment. Generally speaking though you should be aiming for at least 90 to 120 secs to start picking up dust lanes on M45; M42 I've never actually imaged but I think (others may need to verify this) is that you want to take two separate sets of exposures - one as long as possible, and another of reasonably short (15 to 20 secs) to fill in the inevitably blown out core that you get from a long exposure times. General advice for anything is aim for at least an hour of data if possible. ISO - I find ISO 1600 still very low on noise, but unless conditions are really good I don't often use it as light pollution around my house totally obliterates anything above 60 secs more often than not so I generally use 800. But, as with all these things; you just have to play and find what works for you.
  9. Oh, well thats put a spanner to my plans then! I had high hopes for the "comet registration" mode in DSS. Looks like its done something though. I suppose a composite is possible? But then you'd have a big smear where your comet was supposed to be on your star layer and your comet layer would obviously be too small to overlay over the top. This challenge could be one for the sketchers!
  10. Hi Peter thanks for the link. My goal at the moment is 60 secs at 50mm, if I can get that to work then will think about 60 secs at 100 which I’m led to believe is plausible but perhaps pushing the envelope. Maybe 30 secs would be a more realistic target! I’m plagued with terrible LP to the south and west so 30 secs may be the max either way!
  11. No I reckon at least 45 minute exposures. May have to step the ISO down from 800 to 400
  12. Its arrived.... Came via UPS in a box easily big enough for a HEQ5 head... And it was nicely packaged in a slightly smaller box inside that. Comes with a drinking straw (or polar finding sight tube, I cant decide) and a rather substantial piece of metal that serves only as an adaptor for swapping over the 1/4 or 3/8 head. Its a little bit bigger than I expected and feels really substantial and heavy in the hand. All nice metal construction and certainly looks the business. But doesn't really come with any literature or instructions - had to download these from the omegon website (although in fairness there is an excellent suite of supporting literature that is generally very engaging and useful) I still have absolutely no idea how the little tension spring thingies at the bottom work, despite the diagrams. Hopefully it'll be clearer in practise. And yes, the little timer really does sound exactly like an egg timer and yes it really really does have a little egg timer buzzer thing when it runs out. Cracking! (pun intented). Obviously with it being Britain, first light will no doubt be sometime around March.... But I am determined to catch 46p even if it means hiring a helicopter to get above the perma clouds. More to follow
  13. I’ve watched that a few times. It’s really good. But having said that I don’t really agree with the point he’s making about accuracy. If your aim is simply finding stuff then I think they work great. I was using a skymax 90 on a tabletop EQ1 in this fashion for about 8 months and saw M13, M2, M11, M15, the double cluster and many others for the first time just using this method - so it cant be that bad!
  14. Yeah, they can be a bit vague on an eq1 or 2 but for brighter stuff it’s actually quite fun zooming around with just a piece of paper and some numbers to direct you (if you like that sort of thing!)
  15. Mr niall

    Devon Newbie

    Hello there, and welcome.
  16. Oh... that’s how they work! Well that’s embarrassing, I’ve been putting them on that other swingy thing.
  17. It’s probably easiest to check YouTube for alignment tips - it’s easier to watch than explain! Setting circles; Not quite, you need to know a few of the brighter stars in the sky and learn their coordinates. Then you find one of them through the scope, adjust the rings to match the coordinates, and then you can move your scope around to whatever target you are looking for.
  18. Nothing really pal - the fundamentals are the same. You’ll get field rotation but DSS will fix that. I find the images aren’t quite as sharp looking - and you need to crop at least 10% off the edges but with some practice and dedication you’ll get cracking results. honestly, I’ve said it before but “astrophotography on the go” is an absolute belter book and would suit your needs perfectly.
  19. Just pulled the trigger on one of these. Determined to get some shots of 46p, especially after the 21p debarcle... Details to follow. If my calculations are right should get at least 45mins unguided at 1200mm. Or something
  20. If it were me, I'd probably try and steer you away from GOTO telescopes for the following reasons: 1. Price - they're squeezing your budget a little too far. 2. They can require a bit of setup (I'd call this faff, but some would call this fun, your mileage may vary haha), that may be offputting to a younger observer. With your budget I would suggest the biggest bang for your buck is probably a skywatcher heritage 130p or a skywatcher skyliner 150p. Both are crazy value for money and very easy to setup. The 150 is much bigger - but the 130p is a great compromise as it is super portable and quick to setup. https://www.firstlightoptics.com/beginner-telescopes/skywatcher-heritage-130p-flextube.html https://www.firstlightoptics.com/beginner-telescopes/skywatcher-skyliner-150p-dobsonian.html Or another option completely is: https://www.firstlightoptics.com/heritage/skywatcher-heritage-90-virtuoso.html This is quite cool as it is very compact and sort of has tracking but if you invest another £59 you can get the synscan wifi dongle that gives you full goto through your lenovo tablet. The scope itself has a smaller aperture (so you'll see less) but the maksutov design is super compact and a bit of a lunar / planetary specialist. Thie thing you have to consider too is that the planets have no pretty much disappeared until about June / July so you may need to concentrate on other things in the interim anyway! In terms of software there is loads - Stellarium is free and works on a pc. Sky Safari is available at various price points and is great for tablets. Its way outside your budget but something like the Skywatcher AZGTI with a 130p reflector is very cool because it allows complete control with your tablet and can actually be interfaced with Sky Safari to kind of "drive round" the sky (but yes is over budget and does require a bit of setup). Photography - no not off piste at all; but getting good photo's from pointing a camera down an eyepiece is notoriously difficult and often disappointing with the exception of the moon. You may need to limit your expectations slightly with your budget. Books - get a copy of Turn Left at Orion - the best best best all round beginners astronomy book without exception.
  21. Yes I'd considered that - luckily though I'm getting my hands on a personal laptop this week rather than using the familyone so that should cause a few less arguments! Do you not find you have rogue copies of stuff floating around though? Like file uploads and that sort of thing? Or maybe thats just me!
  22. Hello there i was wondering if anyone had any top tips for keeping all your data organised? I wouldn’t describe myself as particularly untidy but by the time I’ve got from memory card to laptop to DSS to photoshop to Lightroom to online storage(!) Im getting a bit lost! one thing that particularly annoys is the new adobe creative cloud seems to be backing up and saving things I don’t want it to. I think one of the biggest issues is I’m not very disciplined (or brave??) and am ending up with multiple incarnations of a slightly tweaked finished product and not knowing which one is which! Also I haven’t really landed on a naming convention I’m happy with for files - something succinct but still detailed and useful. Anybody use the big photo sharing sites - Flickr... that sort of thing? A.N
  23. Very cool - ive been trying too but unfortunately it’s sitting right over an industrial estate and a brand new 400 acre floodlit car storage yard so there’s absolutely no chance for me! Might point the camera in that area next clear night.
  24. Hmm I don’t know about that - I’m more of a point and hope kind of astrophotographer . Although I have had 20 x 90 seconds at 300mm (and no discarded subs) on my star adventurer with a good polar alignment so I reckon with a bit of luck you may be in the right territory.
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