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About pacificdiver

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  1. I'm putting together a beginner setup for AP and had decided on the Sirius EQ-G (HEQ5). I see that Orion makes a hybrid version, the Sirius Pro Az/EQ-G. I know the Sirius EQ-G is a good beginner mount, as I see it referenced everywhere as a good place to start for just about anyone beginning in AP, but is the hybrid mount equally stable? Does anyone have the Pro Az/EQ-G who can comment on stability for AP? I'd really like to have the Alt/Az functionality for quicker visual setup, but if it will interfere with stability for AP, I'd have to consider buying a separate setup for visual use. Thanks in advance for any input.
  2. Thanks for the response. I'm leaning toward the Evo 8, mainly because of the ease of setup and weight advantages over a solid GEM or Advanced VX mount. I was thinking I could start with say, the Advanced VX 8, and then switch the OTA for a small APO refractor when I want to start imaging, but the added complexity/weight/setup time of the EQ mounts seems to make the Evo an attractive option, even if it's going to cost me more in the long run. I have so much to learn about this amazing hobby! Thank you for your advice.
  3. I'm very new to the hobby, having played around with a Meade ETX125 about 20 years ago, and getting out of the hobby because I had to sell the unit. I'm hoping for a little guidance on a first kit to purchase. My budget is about $2.5K. My goals are: 1) I'd like something that my kids and I can enjoy, easy setup, not too heavy/bulky, etc - mainly for planets, moon, and bright DSOs for visual viewing. 2) I am also interested in video right away though, and I know virtually nothing about it. I'd like to begin long-exposure imaging in a year or so, once I have a more firm grasp of the hobby. The two choices I narrowed down to are either the Evolution 8, or a small APO refractor, such as the Explore Scientific 80ED or 102ED with a solid GEM. What I'm unclear on is whether I risk having a large piece of furniture that won't get used much, if the 8 inch SCT can't do much more for me than the refractor, given the light pollution in my area and the fact that I'm probably going to be using it for relatively bright targets. For those with some astronomy "mileage," am I wrong in assuming that a solid 4 inch refractor could be used for of my overall needs, than the 8 inch SCT, if I have the right mount, especially if i want to get into DSO imaging later on? I know the Evo series is not suited to imaging DSOs. I live in a moderately polluted area in northern Michgan (US), not horrible, but definitely not like being 4 hours from nowhere. Thanks for any input.
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