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Everything posted by Arushin

  1. Hello all, I am trying to get my head around how I can align both my scopes onto a single object at the same time. I have an ED80 for DSO A.P. and my Mak 180 for planetary imaging but I don't want to have to keep realigning the Go-to mount from one scope to the other. I figure that if I can align both scopes to the same object, then I should be able to choose whether to image planets etc or do some DSO work without having to realign the mount each time. I am just about to have my obsy built so the mount will be on a pillar going forward and permanently set up. I want to be able to start from the 'Park' position and image Jupiter (for instance) with the Mak and ASI camera on one night and then next night be able to send the ED80 and DSLR to the whirlpool galaxy (or other DSO) without messing around with the alignment of the mount. In theory, if both scopes are initially aligned to the same object then I should be able to achieve this, but as both scopes are currently mounted on a dual saddle bar I am not able to adjust the ALT/AZ of either scope independently so can't get a single object into the center of both scopes at the same time. I am hoping the following... 1 - that all the above is not a complete load of waffle and that people can understand what I am trying to achieve, 2 - that there is maybe some sort of commercially available gizmo that will fit into a standard vixen dovetail that will allow me to adjust one of the scopes up/down/left/right, 3 - that someone has already done this and that it is actually possible. Here's hoping Thanks in advance
  2. Just seems that older versions of Sharpcap hang with the ASI. Managed to get Fire capture up and running instead but now need a clear night to test it.
  3. Had a DMK 21 and now have an ASI. Camera is brilliant for the money and gives far better results that the DMK (I didn't pay any import duty either) but I can't get on with the new version of Sharpcap which you need to use with it and I couldn't get it to work with 'wcctrl' either. I am going to try with 'Firecapture' which seems to be a bit more user friendly. I'd recommend the ASI which only took 4 working days to arrive.
  4. Right.... ASI120MC landed with me on Tuesday 2nd, exactly 1 week from placing the order. I have to say how impressed I am with the shipping because that is none too shabby especially considering it was the Easter weekend in the UK. China to UK in 3-4 working days and NO import duty. The Camera itself came assembled as a high end webcam but the package contained everything needed to convert it to a planetary cam. To unscrew the lens and replace with the supplied IR filter and 1.25 barrel took about 40 seconds. My only problem was that I could not get the supplied driver/software disc to work in either of my 2 laptops or my desktop PC, so I simply opted to download them from the suppliers website. Another problem solved in just a couple of minutes. As luck would have it, Tuesday night was nice and clear so I thought I would give it a quick trial and see how it held up against my previous Philips 900 webcam and DFK21 AU04. Baring in mind that I now have to use the new version of Sharpcap which is a bit harder to get my hopeless head around (older versions seemed to crash with the camera) I took a couple of shots of Jupiter just to try and get an idea of which settings I should use. Upon finding that my 2X barlow had decided to self destruct and was unusable I realized that a direct comparison was not possible at this stage so gave up for the night. Upon stacking the resulting AVI's with just the camera (no barlow) for the sheer hell of it, I found myself very pleasantly surprised. This was taken with the DFK in my SW 180pro Mak with 2X barlow and is probably the best Jupiter I had ever got ...this is about 800 frames with the ASI120MC in the same scope but without a barlow I can see a fair bit more clarity with the new camera already and this is after just 20 minutes of messing around (and without the barlow). I would like to thank everyone who helped me out in this thread and in particular those who pointed me in the direction of this camera. I think the ASI and I are going to have a very long and happy relationship. I am definitely going to have to invest in a good quality 2X barlow. Thanks again everyone
  5. Thanks to everyone for your replies and input. I decided to go for the ASI120MC and see how I get on for a while. Placed the order on Monday night and it arrived in the UK this morning' so far so good. I will do a report on my thoughts and findings once I have been able to give it a decent work out. I am intrigued to see how it shapes up with the Mak 180 compared to the DFK21 AU04. Watch this space....
  6. Thanks for this.. is there one in particular on this page that would be a good choice?
  7. Hi all, does anyone know if there is, or what would be, an improvement over a DFK21 AU04 for planetary imaging with a Mak 180 with a budget of around £300 2nd hand?
  8. Hi, VERY similar setup to mine. I have a SW180pro with a SWED80 along with an ST80 as a guidescope on an EQ6pro. You should be able to get a very good balance between the 2 OTA's if you work in one axis at a time and I strongly advise that you do. The strain you would be putting on the motors and in particular the gears would probably strip them in a very short space of time if you don't. Lock the weights about half way up the shaft for the moment and mount your OTA's on the dual saddle. Unlock the RA and carefully move the dual saddle left & right in the mount until neither of the 2 OTA's 'pulls' the other down. Now load up with a typical eyepiece/camera/barlow etc and fine tune. This takes a fair amount of trial and error but needs to be done well. Once Neither of the 2 tubes is too dominant weight wise you can use the counterweights to get the balance for the Dec by unlocking that and adjusting the weight up or down. Be aware that I had to get an extra 5kg weight to get my balance spot on. Once happy you can mark the positions on the Dual Saddle and the weight bar. Getting the balance right will make all the difference! It improves tracking, guiding, goto accuracy and stops you having to get your mount repaired every few months. You will be able to tell when you have it right as the motors should be noticeably smoother sounding and quieter. Hope I haven't confused you. There are some great videos on Youtube etc about how to balance. Good luck
  9. Hi, I used to have one of these so I'll try and help. First, choose one of the tripod legs and mark a little 'N' on it so it can act as North and point this as close as you can in the direction of North. Extend the legs to a comfortable viewing height but NOT all the way up. With the head of the mount 'off'... put a spirit level across the top in both directions and level the mount as best you can. Do not rely on the bubble. Now put the mount head on with the dovetail to the right and pointing north. Carefully add the OTA and balance it in the dovetail taking into account tha additional weight of eyepieces etc.(this can be adjusted as you go to fine tune so just start roughly in the centre of the dovetail). It seems that you have the handset pretty much sussed so at this point you should do at least a 2 star alignment (the 2 stars should be as far seperated in the sky as possible) Once aligned and balanced, park the scope to the 'Home' position (DO NOT POWER OFF) and mark a line on the mount head and base and also where your balance point is on the dovetail with a white or silver paint pen. Everytime you set up in future use the same leg as North and put the mount head on aligning your marks and you should be able to either 'Start from park' position or at least align pretty quickly. Hope this helps
  10. Hi and welcome back... Firstly I think you have a great scope and camera, but I am not sure how they will work as a combination... if at all. Typically this type of scope is more suited to Planetary & lunar imaging using a CCD camera or webcam and the DSLR camera is more often used for Deep Sky Object imaging. Both types of imaging involve the stacking of multiple images to achieve a final result but D.S.O's tend to use long exposure multiple still frames which require a guided EQ type mount and planetary/lunar imaging tends to use software to separate, sort and stack the best frames of a 'captured' AVI (video file). As an example, Andromeda is the result of about 45 mins worth of stacked images from a DSLR and Jupiter is about 1100 frames stacked from a webcam AVI You have a cracking lunar/planetary scope but will probably need a different kind of scope for DSO's. If you are serious about getting into imaging then the best place to start is to get a copy of 'Making Every Photon Count' which is available from the sponsor FLO. This is a MUST read for anyone looking at getting into imaging and is regarded as the Astrophotography beginners bible. Honestly, it's that good I have recommended it 3 times already today. Good luck Tony
  11. Hi and welcome, Get a copy of 'Making Every Photon Count' available from FLO. It will explain everything you need to know. When I first started out I contacted Ian King who is a well respected astrophotographer and he advised me to get a Sky-Watcher ED80 refractor and DSLR...so I did. Brilliant advice in my opinion. very affordable little APO with excellent optics. I can't see me needing to upgrade for a while yet. Regards Tony
  12. as long as camera is set to manual...yes. You set your exposure time and ISO through the software.
  13. Hi James and welcome. In my limited experience I will say that the SW 127 Mak is a cracking little scope for planetary viewing and webcam imaging. I owned one for quite a while and now have its big brother the 180. The only DSO I personally ever saw through it was the ring nebula (that's not to say that others are not viewable) but it was very feint. If you are serious about DSO imaging later on down the line you should read 'Making Every Photon Count' as it is the imagers bible and available through FLO. Read this before you buy anything. The book will give you a realistic idea of what you can and cannot acheive and what equipment you would need. Astrophotography can be an absolute money pit, but there is no reason it can't be done on a reasonable budget. If you want great views from a planetary/lunar scope then I would definately recommend the SW127, but if you want something which will work as a reasonable all-rounder, I would go with the 200P. As stated, there is no scope that will be great at everything. Hope this helps a bit Regards Tony
  14. Hmm.... some people love them and others won't go near them. I have to say that I can see the advantage of learning the sky by star-hopping but when I am doing A.P. having goto is a godsend. I get to spend more time imaging and less time hunting for what I am trying to photograph. Every second counts in this country 'cos you never know when the next bank of cloud is going to park right above your head. Tony
  15. I have to agree. Once you have sussed collimation this will be worth every penny...and some.
  16. Hi I used to have the 12" version and NO... they don't stay collimated very well at all. Unfortunately in order to move and store it I had to dissassemble it to go in and out of the house. I managed to improve things a bit by marking up which truss was attached to what part, so that eveytime it went together it was identical but collimation was still a bit of an issue. Investing in a Hotech laser collimater sorted the problem as I could check/adjust collimation everytime I set it up in just a couple of minutes. If you are tempted by this price go for it! Make sure you find an easy way to collimate though. Tony
  17. It does indeed... I used it for ages until I started using BYEOS, which I think is brilliant for the money.
  18. Would love to see a side by side comparison on these two cameras myself having just sold my SPC900 and bought a 2nd hand DFK21AU04. Have I just blown £200?
  19. Cracking Camera this and definitely worth shopping around. I managed to get mine from Amazon when it was on a special offer as a complete kit for under £300. My wife manged to get a second hand 1000D in perfect condition with 2 lenses, 3 batteries, all the software etc and carry case for £250. There are bargains to be had out there! Only real difference I can see is that the 1100D has Live-view, but I haven't needed to use that feature for AP. Good luck
  20. Hi matey, I have bought so much Sky-Watcher stuff in the last year or two that I have 2X barlows coming out of my ears. I have at least 2 boxed unused ones... if you want, I'll stick one in the post to you. Sorry if I appeared to misinform you regarding the FPS. Obviously my best was only at 10 FPS regardless of what type of USB port. The camera IS good... remember that these images where all done with it. A lot is down to focus and atmosphere at the time. I have used both 2X and 3X barlows (when the seeing permits) but I have never been able to use my 4x Imagemate, regardles of scope. Tony
  21. Arushin


    Hi Cracking photo msh1! I am dying to give this one a go myself and hope I can get somewhere close to this. If I can, I will be very happy.
  22. Yep! I don't seem to be able to bring it to focus without the diagonal. i wonder if it's possible....
  23. Celestron 9.25 Mak. Very popular with planetary imagers, but I couldn't find one at the right price at the time. They don't seem to come up very often on the2nd hand market which is testiment to how popular they are.
  24. I agree! Fantastic image with this kit. Well done.
  25. Hi, this only the 2nd time I have managed to use the 180 for capturing, but a definate improvement over the127 which I used to have and loved. I would definately recommend the 180pro for planetary and luner obs & imaging if you can't get your hands on a C9.25 for the right price. I did manage a reasonable Mars earlier in the year which, although way past its best, I still got the best shot that I have ever got of it. I will post it up if I can work out how to add a picture from a file to a reply...... Ahhh...there you go!
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