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Panda Alvin

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  1. I think budget will be very important in this case. There are used APS-C DSLRs that starts from £20, up to £3,000 new for Full Frame format on the market. For wide angle shooting getting a DSLR is only half the battle as well. You need to consider what lens you want on top of that. There is no point getting a very good lens with a sub par DSLR and vice versa. Faster lens dedicated for AP can also cost £££, again ranging from £20 - £1,500. When I started out the hobby 6 months ago and looking for cameras, I found the best site was the list provided by wikipedia which offered base facts. I then picked a few within my reasonable price range, and looked at the reviews individually. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_Canon_EOS_digital_cameras https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_Nikon_DSLR_cameras It may take a while to get around a bunch of numbers but it becomes more easier to understand the more you research into it. For deciding where to start, whilst the number of megapixel isn't always the rule of law, I would suggest looking no lower than 15MP if you want quality night photos. You may also want to pick one that can shoot videos if you want to capture planets via a telescope. Articulated screen is optional but its nice to have if you camera ends up pointing at or near zenith (your neck will really thank you for it). As for camera lens, I found https://www.the-digital-picture.com/ to be a good site to base / start my research. Its got detailed reviews on most of the lenses out there, and what I love about it is that it sometimes offers a table which shows similar lens out there with brief comparison. As for what I have, I brought a Canon 550D from https://www.mpb.com/en-uk/, and took a gamble on ebay and brought a Tokina 11mm - 20mm lens. It costed around £450 in total but I enjoyed every penny spent on it. You can see some of my time laps results below if you want to judge on the quality. It has also been edited through Lightroom just to bear that in mind.
  2. Tom Scott had made a video about these sound mirrors 5 months ago, I found it an interesting watch if anyone is intrigued. If I remeber correctly, his team demonstrated by putting a microphone in the middle of the dish in Romney marsh, which picked up birds tweeting across the lake. They also flown a drone nearby (with permission from the local airport) to demonstrate what it would be like picking an aircraft miles off the coast back in the day.
  3. New camera mount arrived today. Putting it on a 24 hours test spin at the moment. Cant wait to do some lovely time-lapses and exposures with this
  4. There are no focal reducers dedicated for Maks that I am aware of. Their internal baffle restrictions (27mm field stop) makes less suitable for adapting wide field. If you really need one, what you probably want to look for is a 1.25" low cost FR that screws onto the bottom your eyepiece. Eg something like this - https://www.firstlightoptics.com/reducersflatteners/astro-essentials-05x-1-25-focal-reducer.html You will often see 0.63x Meade / Celestron SCT FRs floating around but as name suggests its for SCTs. While these can be screwed on with a help of a "Mak - Sct adapter", I wouldn't advocate going through that route, even with second hand as it can be quite expensive for something that may not improve your view much (and you could get a used 130p heritage dob for around that price anyway) If you are not aware of mak's limit with focal reducers already, depending on your power and EP's FOV, there will be vignetting. Sometimes you will see it (especially wide angle terrestrial viewing), sometimes you won't under very dark skies, but it's still there so something to keep in mind before purchasing. Edit: Also bear in mind that a 0.5x focal reducer will reduce your telescope speed down to f/5.9 .... So make sure the eyepieces you have are able to handle at that speed, or you may have issues with coma.
  5. Can't comment on this specific can as I have my own one. Optimal time is normally around 6 months, between the two solstice to capture the full range of sun trails. Great item to have for people who are into artistic photography or produce one with minimal effort.
  6. The moon is also below the horizon next weekend (30 Nov - 2 Dec), from afternoon till midnight if anyone interested to know.
  7. Can confirm tonight is looking up to be an amazing night for stargazing. Leonids also peaked this morning, so should still be able to see a few flying across by then. Hope you guys enjoy it out there. (Ingore the pointer, that's for me) Also to note - its an easterly wind so the cloud on the left isn't coming towards us. Looking forward to your reports
  8. I'll pass on this one due to distance. Plus its also my town's Christmas light switch on / fireworks day. Fingers cross for you on clear skies though! Could do with some good weather by then. Alvin
  9. It's more expensive but if you do buy the Barlow from FLO, you could do without the 1.25" nosepiece. The Barlow sold by FLO comes with T thread so it could fit directly on the T ring. eg like Geoff Listers's image
  10. Panda Alvin

    Skymax 127

  11. You pretty much got the right one, what Peter is saying is that you don't really need the extra tube between the T-ring and the nosepiece in this image. The item is still OK because it is removable and you just fit T ring directly to nosepiece instead. Most basic telescope accessories have an industry standard threads so will fit each other unless physically buy a different size or item. So to visualise this will be your image train - Nikon D90 >> Nikon T adaptor >> T2 to1.25" Nosepiece >> 1.25" Barlow >> Telescope
  12. Very good read, all the points are pretty much very relatable to what I am experiencing right now. I have recently started and sometimes struggle to find objects both in Sky and through telescope in my fairly light polluted back yard. When I eventually find the object, it feels like you have overcome a challenge which feels like a reward in itself, even if the view you get is not so great or faint. I do also sometimes feel pressured to observe at clear nights, like tonight when the forecast is looking good in my area. I feel like I need to go out and learning more, but I have work tomorrow and god knows when the next good day will be. Wife will also make a passing comment that I spend too long outside but then again also make another comment when I haven't t touch the scope for a while! Since started on this journey, I quickly realised this hobby has very very bad influence on my wallet. The initial budget I had set at the very beginning is now 4x over that limit.
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