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Everything posted by Peter_D

  1. Hi, I'm still plugging away at Mars . This will probably be the last one (but I keep saying this!). I used my Meade 2080, Zwo asi224mc, Baader UV-IR cut filter and a 2x Barlow. 5000 frames, best 15% used. The main features are (from left) the dark Mare Cimmerium, the brighter cut of Hesperia Planum and Syrtis Minor. Clear skies Peter
  2. Another tip if you are just starting (and lucky you, you have dark skies) is just go out with a pair of binoculars and an app on you mobile. A handheld pair like 10x50s or 7x50s can be used comfortably without the need for a mount. A lot of open star clusters and larger, dimmer deep sky objects can be seen really well in binoculars if you have the darker skies.
  3. Hi, I have a Celestron 6SE Goto mount which I like a lot and find the goto works flawlessly (after using an external power supply, leveling the tripod first before adding mount, inputting all parameters carefully). I only use it for visual, lunar and planetary photography. The Alt Az mount is unsuited for long exposure deep sky photography. You can buy an expensive equatorial 'wedge' for it but by all accounts, you are better off with a German Equatorial Mount (GEM) for deep sky photography. What I will say is I use the SE because of the light pollution I suffer from here. It's impo
  4. Hi, Mons Rümker was well placed for me yesterday. It's been on my to do list for a while but I was always frustrated capturing it. Equipment used: Meade 2080, Zwo asi224mc, Baader UV-IR cut filter. 5000 frames captured, best 20% used. Thanks for looking! Clear skies Peter
  5. Hi, Finally, warm, settled weather. Seeing was excellent tonight - probably a 9/10. It would have been perfect conditions but for it being windy. I used my Meade 8 inch 2080 SCT and Zwo asi224mc with a Baader UV/IR cut filter. 5000 frames, best 15%. Pipp, Autostakkert3, Registax6 plus a little tweeking on my Huawei P9 mobile photo editor. Tuesday has a good forecast so I'll try to capture Mons Rümker. Clear skies Peter
  6. I bought a Celestron 6SE a year ago. Initially, I was slightly underwhelmed by it - very nice optics (it arrived in perfect collimation), no focus shift but for the life of me I couldn't get the go-to working and red dot finder was really flimsy. It turned out the problem with go-to was me using internal AA batteries. So the first upgrade was a 12V power supply lead and the second was a finder shoe that allowed me to use a finder scope. I've used it mostly for lunar and planetary but also brighter DSOs as my suburban skies are not great for the fainter objects. The go-to is invalua
  7. I'm really sad to hear about Astronomy & Nature Centre closing. Their videos on You Tube are absolutely superb - really helpful and informative but really watchable. Best wishes to the proprietors!
  8. After imaging Mars a few nights ago with my Celestron 6SE, I tried Uranus the night after - my first time observing the planet. The Go-to works so well - I still marvel at this technology! It was a thrill seeing a new planet at the eyepiece. The image, while not impressive in detail, really brings home how distant the outer planets are. Apropos, I still have to get Neptune First image is original scale, second is 200% Equipment: Celestron 6SE, Zwo asi224mc
  9. Yes, just checked, 7.32"
  10. It was the first fully clear evening in what seemed like weeks so I had the opportunity to try my new asi224mc on Mars. It was bitterly cold so I only took a couple of videos but managed to get some detail. Equipment: Celestron 6SE, Zwo asi224mc, Baader UV IR cut filter, 2x Barlow. c.3000 frames, best 15% used. Sharpcap, Pipp, Registax6
  11. Hi, thanks for the comments. SpaceDave I'm afraid I misled you a bit because my DSLR is the 60D model, not the 6D. Unfortunately, I can't get the settings right now (The ISO was 800 (I think!)). I remember I used a Barlow x2 and the Video Crop mode to record a video. The planetary tracking on the SE was sweet. I do remember that around the time of the opposition, I often had to experiment with the camera settings and focus quite a bit. Mars is a lot smaller now so it might be the case you need to use a x2,5 or x3 Barlow.
  12. I've started doing more Astrophotography in the last year - one advantage is you can revisit your data and reprocess images during periods of bad weather.
  13. I finally had a break in the weather. Seeing was still quite bad with high cloud drifting continuously past the Moon. It was my first time using my new Zwo asi224mc camera. Very easy to set up and use (I used Sharpcap to control the camera). Definitely looking forward to using it on more lunar targets in better seeing. I had a good view of the crater Stadius and its satellite craters. It's an area that I haven't looked at in detail before. Equipment: Meade 2080, Zwo asi224mc 215 frames, best 25% used. Pipp, Autostakkert!3, Registax, Gimp.
  14. Hi, I've found this webpage to be invaluable: https://astronomy.tools/ It will give you a simulated field of view of lots of astronomical objects in binoculars, telescopes and cameras. What's clear using it is no one telescope can be expected to be used on the full range of celestial objects. With the Mak 180, I'd use it as a planetary and lunar detail scope, double stars as well as smaller, compact DSO objects. The Mak 127 would be used for similar but would be an ideal grab and go set up. For larger objects (eg. M31, M45 etc) these Maks will offer too much magnification i
  15. I installed SharpCap and I'm getting a live image - really happy - thanks again everyone (in previous thread also).
  16. Thank you for the detailed explanation. I see it now in Device Manager! Sorry, for some reason, I had expected it to appear in the Windows Explorer. And I see it in the documentation now too! Maybe I need some fresh air. Ok, feeling a bit foolish now, thanks so much!
  17. Hi, I'm not having the greatest of experiences with Zwo today! Thanks to some friendly help here, I was finally able to access the Asi camera drivers and installed them. I have also installed the Ascom drivers. I shutdown and restarted the laptop. When I connect the supplied Usb3 cable from the Camera to the laptop, I hear the little 'connection jingle' but am seeing no update. The laptop is not recognising the camera. I have a Dell Latitude E6440 running Windows 10. Carried out an update this morning. I would really appreciate any pointers. I would be tearing my hair
  18. It works using your link! Excellent, thanks a million for sending it.
  19. Thanks for the feedback. I just tried on my mobile also and I get the same error so it's not machine specific my end. I've sent them a mail too. It's frustrating - I'm all for getting rid of download CDs but at least make sure your (new) customers can access the online files. PS I'm in Germany. Would my location have any bearing on why I can't gain access?
  20. Hi, Can anyone confirm if they can access the Software and Manuals sections from the homepage? I get an access denied message (since yesterday) and just wondering if it's the same for everyone. I bought a new asi224mc and I'm a little disappointed I can't set it up Clear skies Peter
  21. Hi, I've been dipping my toes into DS imaging - because I don't have Goto and quite bad LP, I've concentrated on M42 for now. Yesterday was my third attempt. (I'm using a Celestron 6SE Ota (f10), unguided Vixen GP mount with SW upgrade motors and an unmodded Canon Eos 60D.) Yesterday, I did 110 10s lights and 20 darks@ ISO 1600. I didn't do bias frames (a mistake!). For processing, I used DSS and then Gimp. As you can see, the first image didn't work out well. Today, I created 25 bias frames inside in my dark basement and reprocessed the images. It made a big difference. I'm m
  22. If you have ruled out doing visual, and are more interested in Deep Sky than Planetary, I would choose a refractor. Next, you have to think about how heavy you want the mount to be - will you be travelling to a dark site or not. If you can observe from home, I would actually advise you to spend more than half your budget on your mount and less on your telescope. You can always upgrade the telescope later. Having a good mount is key for Deep Sky. If you want to do a mix of Planetary and Deep Sky, I would choose a SCT.
  23. Hi, Has anyone noticed really large price discrepancies between astro suppliers at the moment? I was just looking at ZWO Asi224mc astro camera (both USB3) and the price difference between the two big astro shops in Germany is 70€! They are both marked as being in stock and deliverable. Peter
  24. Sorry Moderators - didn't mean to repost this, please delete
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