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Maideneer

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Posts posted by Maideneer

  1. 6 hours ago, Shimrod said:

    Your Starsense will take power from the mount, so you will need usb ports for both cameras plus connection to the mount. You could get a USB hub (but it may need to be powered) or you could get the Celestron wifi module for your mount which should mean no need for a hub.

    I think your bigger problem is going to be imaging with the ASI224 on a telescope with a FL of 2350mm - it's a small sensor and it may be difficult to get the target on sensor - most recommendations are to start imaging with a shorter focal length and having started with an EdgeHD 8" and moved to a 80mm refractor I would agree with that!

    You might want to consider getting a camera with a larger sensor to use as your imaging camera and retain the ASI224 as your guide camera. At this FL most would recommend an off axis guider rather than a guidescope - if you want to go down the guidescope route you will need one with a longer focal length (600mm) - to mount this you would get a dovetail and some mounting rings.

    For power I have the Celestron Powertank Pro and that is enough to get me through two or three nights  -although a 'night' for me is around 4 hours. I've not yet had any issues running out of power.

    One thing that confused me here was the wifi module / USB hub thing.  What does one have to do with the other?

    I'm trying to count out how many USB ports I'll need on my PC, I only have two.

    1x external hard drive
    1x mouse (yes I need this lol)
    1x imaging camera
    1x guide camera

    What else? So I'll def need a USB Hub anyway.  I've been thinking about that PowerTank but not sure yet, I kind of want to try my Talentcell first but at the same time hesitant because I don't want to damage anything.  I am CLUELESS about electricity/amps/volts etc - literally cannot absorb what any of that means lol

  2. 4 hours ago, Shimrod said:

    Your Starsense will take power from the mount, so you will need usb ports for both cameras plus connection to the mount. You could get a USB hub (but it may need to be powered) or you could get the Celestron wifi module for your mount which should mean no need for a hub.

    I think your bigger problem is going to be imaging with the ASI224 on a telescope with a FL of 2350mm - it's a small sensor and it may be difficult to get the target on sensor - most recommendations are to start imaging with a shorter focal length and having started with an EdgeHD 8" and moved to a 80mm refractor I would agree with that!

    You might want to consider getting a camera with a larger sensor to use as your imaging camera and retain the ASI224 as your guide camera. At this FL most would recommend an off axis guider rather than a guidescope - if you want to go down the guidescope route you will need one with a longer focal length (600mm) - to mount this you would get a dovetail and some mounting rings.

    For power I have the Celestron Powertank Pro and that is enough to get me through two or three nights  -although a 'night' for me is around 4 hours. I've not yet had any issues running out of power.

    Do I need a guide cam with an OAG? If so, maybe I could use the 224 for that purpose.

    I bought my 224 for my little Travelscope 70 so I definitely have some experience now.

  3. Finally my 9.25 HD is coming after waiting forever because of backorders and whatnot.

    What’s an appropriate accompanying guide scope + cam for this particular scope? I’m expecting to use my ASI224MC as my imaging cam.

    Since I don’t yet have experience with this model scope, does it have the necessary mounting brackets for whatever I choose? I suspect since I only have 2 USB ports on my laptop I’m going to need something that can handle all of these extra inputs so I imagine a USB splitter of some kind is needed here. Power too I’d imagine. I have a Talentcell I’m planning to use but it might not be enough.

    Trial and error I suppose!

  4. My waiting is finally over!  Agena Astroproducts got the C9.25 CGEM EdgeHD in stock (5 of them) today and I secured one along with StarSense Autoalign, focal reducer and a dew shield.  All this waiting and checking stock every single day for over 7 months was driving me insane.  The upside was I got to learn a lot on my little crappy TravelScope 70 which gave me a good foundation for the basics.  And now, I'm going to have new challenges, plenty of them but my saving grace is that I have most of the other good quality accessories I am going to need already and am familiar with their use.

    This is so exciting!

  5. See my sig for equipment, admittedly my scope is ultra-weak but I've managed decent stuff of Saturn so no reason I can't get humble shots of Jupiter.  Problem is, I cannot for the life of me find good settings on my ZWO to even get to the point of processing it.  It either looks way too bright like the attached or way too low so you can barely see anything.  The lower my gain and/or exposure goes, so go the moons too.

    Any tips for how to at least get some workable data?

    Capture_00057.jpg

  6. Lots of people put their signatures on the photos they take like "John Smith Astronomy" or initials or a logo or whatever.  Is there a certain program that creates that for you and inserts it onto pics or is it a case of typing something out in Photoshop and merging it onto your pics every time?

  7. Welp, I managed my first real planetary shot from this little old starter scope and just a couple months experience.  The extender made its way to my house and after a week of nonstop rain, it cleared out last night so off I went to the yard.  Finding the target is the easy bit, it's the rest that is challenging.  I didn't even align my mount or have any sort of guiding help (I won't know how to do that until I get a better scope), I just pointed at the planet and snap snap 1000 frames here and there with Sharpcap.  I took Jupiter too but it didn't come out so good, at least not yet I haven't processed it.

    Having almost no clue how to do much of anything, I processed my source file in PiPP then Autostakkert which I think I sort of understand how to use now.  I didn't do any color correction and I didn't use my ADC (forgot) so there's probably a greenish tint to this.  From this processed file, what's a good option to use to color correct?  I've seen people mention Registax.

    207340037_10159698393121942_8391933136218672442_n.jpg

    • Like 7
  8. The trade offs for not getting a go-to mount will be your time. Time to learn how to make up for the things you don’t have. Time to learn how to do AP without the necessities, and time to find your way around the difficulties.

    A Skywatcher AZ-GTi mount is a go-to Alt-Az, but the firmware update allows for it to be converted into an EQ. You’ll need to pick up a few extra accessories for that switch but it’s possible at your price point. Now that mount isn’t meant or advertised to be used for AP so you get what you get.

    That’s the only mount I have experience with, maybe someone else can chime in to help out too.

  9. First off, I love Finland...visited there many years ago and it's beautiful.

    Now then, you're going to get a lot of different opinions on what to do, what not to do, what to get and what not to get.  It's all so very confusing, and as a newcomer to this hobby myself I will offer you some beginner advice.

    1) The majority of people will tell you that it's not the telescope but the mount which will be your most important purchase.  Here is the thing with that - I'm not saying they are wrong but if ALL you are interested in is sun, moon and planets then you don't need a go-to mount.  You just have to know visually what to look for in the sky for planetary purposes and what time they rise and set.  The moon and sun are obviously easy to find.  A simple ALT-AZ mount should work for you.  If you want to go deeper into the hobby for stars, galaxies, etc then a go-to mount would be a wise purchase.

    2) Get a good tripod.  The ones that come with these bundles are usually junk but the Skymax-102 I *think* comes with an AZ-GTi mount and decent tripod so I'd recommend that one.  If you do get that mount be aware you have to power it so there's more money to be spent on either batteries or a portable power source which adds to the budget (welcome to Astronomy!).

    3) Get a solar filter to look at the sun, do NOT look at it directly with the scope.  That's another expense (welcome to Astronomy!).

    4) You're now going to want to consider eyepieces which adds to the budget (welcome to Astronomy!).  The scope bundles you purchase also usually come with some basic eyepieces which aren't the greatest but they are usable of course.  I believe the Skywatcher 102 is a 1300mm scope, so a 10mm eyepiece would give you 130x magnification and a 25x eyepiece will give you 52x mag.  That's quite powerful so consider getting a lower powered eyepiece for decent wide-field viewing.  My scope isn't as big so I'll leave it to more experienced people here to answer how to achieve that.

    5) It's assumed you have a laptop or desktop to take care of processing the image using software, yes?  Most people like to "stack" images and process them to give a better overall quality to them.  It's very rare to achieve one-shot images that are great, especially for planets.  Moon and sun you can do though in easy one-snaps.

    6) You'll want a neutral density moon filter to decrease the brightness when observing.  Looking at the moon won't damage anything on your scope or eyesight, but the glare is very noticeable especially with full moons and it can get quite annoying. That's another expense (welcome to Astronomy!).


    As much as you think I've said here, I've probably simplified it but believe me when I say, the overwhelming feeling comes and goes in waves...I often go through this too.  Being confused and feeling uncertain doesn't stop as soon as you order a telescope.  But I will say always come back here for more help, the people here are top-notch and there are no dumb questions.  I promise you'll feel comfortable here.

    • Like 1
  10. I am about ready to purchase this item which is a no brainer but here's my question.
    https://agenaastro.com/zwo-1-25-inch-ir-cut-filter.html

    Am I ok to buy the filter on its own or do I need the following to go in tandem with it?
    https://agenaastro.com/zwo-t2-1-25-filter-adapter-t2-1-25-3.html

    I will be using the following in the chain - ASI224, IR Filter, Nose Piece, Extension tube, ADC, Barlow (optional)

    What I am trying to figure out is a few things:
    1) There is nowhere to attach the filter by itself to the actual sensor area so I *assume* I need the adapter too
    2) Assuming I have the adapter + filter in place, I then need to know if I will still have the ability to thread the nose piece in

    Once I figure these two items out, all the rest will work itself out down the chain.

  11. The diagonal idea worked, it worked and I'm stunned!  I got a picture on my screen of some tree leaves in focus!  Wow this is liberating lol. Tonight is the last clear night for a week so Jupiter and Saturn here I come! *fingers crossed*

    P.S. - all of you people are amazing and never made me feel stupid.  This is such a quality message board and I'm proud to be here.

    • Like 5
  12. Right, so I am looking around and apparently an extension tube like this one - https://www.amazon.com/Orion-5123-1-25-Inch-Telescope-Extension/dp/B0000XMUH8 - might be what I need.  In the customer reviews, there's even a guy who has the exact scope I have and others who regard it as helpful for additional back focus with a camera.  So that's my next step here, aaaaaaaaand it's going to rain all this week so I guess that leaves me a while to do some reading.

    • Like 1
  13. I just got done for the night and I didn’t try for the moon but visually got myself seeing Jupiter and Saturn for an hour. I had a massive headache so wasn’t up for much.

    Here’s my issue with the more back focus thing. Wouldn’t similar but far better scopes need the same thing? A nice Redcat or Zenithstar, those are somewhat similarly sized in focal length, wouldn’t that call for the exact same thing? Or is there something I’m missing.

    I know the cam isn’t defective, I popped on the fisheye inside the house and it works just fine so I’m glad about that at least.

    i do have my diagonal yes but I just realized I also have my new ADC…maybe I can try that tomorrow night. If that’s not enough, I can search around for an extender but no idea what that looks like yet until I shop around (I am NOT a handy DIY person).

    What a pain lol!

    • Like 1
  14. 3 minutes ago, neil phillips said:

    I am also unsure but will bet its a light levels, and focusing issue, you need the right settings to see when it starts coming into focus. Keep checking the moon isnt moving away from the chip. By removing the camera and putting in the eyepiece. if its still visible in the eyepice put the camera carefully back in. not jog it too much. also try putting zoom at 50% and make sure your resolution is set at maximum meaning your capture area is set to its largest size

    I will do my best friend! Your help is greatly appreciated…another report back in the AM.

    oh and to OP, I just realized I hijacked your great thread, I’m sorry about that…I didn’t intend to.

    • Like 2
  15. 4 minutes ago, neil phillips said:

    When you look through the main telescope is the chimney also centered  in a eyepiece ? Are you saying the slider controls on sharpcap have no effect on the pc screen ?

    I centered the chimney first with an EP, removed the EP and inserted the cam w/nose piece into the focuser back.  The sliders do SOMETHING to be sure, basically just alternating between white, black, an occasional bluish or tan or whatever - but it's so sensitive and fleeting that it's virtually meaningless to what extent I leverage the sliders.  So something IS happening, but no picture or anything.  My scope focuser knobs do next to nothing when the cam is in.

    I read somewhere that having this cam is nearly equivalent to having a 5mm EP, so I wonder if I'm pointing at things that are too close but then again, pointing at the moon last night produced nothing either.  I'm still going to try your moon tactics later on tonight to see if something works but I'm just lost at this point.

    I don't think Sharpcap in 32 or 64 version matters, I know I have USB 3.0 ports so I really am at a loss.

  16. Daytime problems arising for me too, which was unexpected.

    pic 1 is what I see through my finder scope which is a chimney top

    pic 2 is the actual chimney top, about 100 some odd yards away

    pic 3 just shows the cam attached to the focuser in back

    pic 4 is just an example of the settings in sharpcap

    no slider I adjust works, from exposure to gain to capture area etc etc, the PC screen just goes from white to black and every shade in between depending on movement.

    quite literally can’t get a picture and don’t know how to proceed. This isn’t much fun🙁

    0DD19A41-7874-4226-9FF9-EB56A2F7B9C5.jpeg

    BE18CBBD-08A4-4B07-BF9D-672627BA8426.jpeg

    E56B8CF8-9809-43F2-887B-678A876D5002.jpeg

    CD8E3C1B-EBFC-4D75-9F39-A3D6D5DEFCD2.jpeg

  17. 4 hours ago, neil phillips said:

    Ok here is what you do. First make sure your finder scope is working in tandem with the telescope. At a tv ariel. or chimney or some such, in the distance. make sure the view through the big scope, is the same as the finder scope. If you put the chimney in the middle of the big scope. just adjust the finder untill the chimney is also in the centre of that. Keep checking both finder scope, And the main scope are showing the same image in the same position (the centre)

    Now point the finder at the moon. View it through the main scope with eyepiece. start your motor running the moon should now be tracking.

    Start sharpcap. Attach camera lead. under exposure there is a bar that says  quick picks set the setting that says 1/60s. with the scope now  tracking the moon from the previous step.  with the zwo all sky lens removed carefully insert the camera. If its all dark raise the gain slowly untill you see light if its all white  start focussing and keep looking for signs its coming into focus. You may have to try one way. Or the other (focuser ) in or out you should at this point  start to see  the moon coming into focus.. if you do not. check the finder scope is still showing the moon  right in  the centre if yes try dropping the gain down to about 25% and keep focusing  one way or  the other untill you start to see the moon come into focus. Theres more to it but that should get you with the moon in focus on screen. Trust me its not the telescope. Hope this is useful

    Cheers for the response sir.  Ok, so on this Travelscope the finderscope is fixed to the OTA with two thumbscrews at the base.  The tube rings do allow for some movement forward and back but that's about it.  So in essence, whatever I see through the finder will be slightly off from what appears in the EP, and that is a constant due to the construction of the piece.

    What I did was find the moon and other objects through my EP and then removed the EP and diagonal and inserted the cam.  By doing so, it always causes some shift since let's face it, the TS70 isn't going into the Astronomy Hall of Fame of good Scope Construction and so when I engage Sharpcap, I never really know if what I centered in the EP is still there or if it is off.  And if it is off, going about finding it again with the cam proved fruitless - I assumed I would see at least something as the moon for example is rather large and doesn't move too fast.  Whenever I move the focuser wheel on the scope it always slightly shifts everything left or right (again, see construction) so it isn't the most stable of wheels.

    I'm going to try again tonight, it's another clear sky later on but I will make sure to do some daytime work first and follow your instructions.

  18. 5 hours ago, badhex said:

    I'm not sure that the scope would cause any issues here, not the issues you describe anyway! A couple of things to try:

    • I believe that model comes with a wide-angle lens which won't be needed for imaging through a scope - is this still attached? I believe there's a nose piece included with no lens inside, so you should make sure the standard nosepiece is attached, not the lens
    • You may eventually also need an IR cut filter as don't believe this model has one, but this won't stop you taking pictures in the first instance
    • It's possible that may not be able to reach focus without an extender of some kinda although there is quite a bit of focus travel so I'm not sure this will be an issue
    • Try taking some basic images/videos through the scope in the daytime, TV aerials, lamp posts etc - something easy to find

    I did take the fisheye lens off and attached the nose piece, so check.

    I turned that not too stable focus wheel every which way I could think of.  Basically I went to the moon, or a star, or a planet, found it and centered in my 32mm EP, unscrewed the EP and diagonal and then inserted the camera and connected to Sharpcap.  When that didn't produce anything I figured what the heck and popped in a 3x Barlow just to try it out and again, zero. Focusing manually all ways I could think of.

    I think I will try the daytime thing first, that's probably the smartest thing I could do at this point.

  19. 17 hours ago, Stu1smartcookie said:

    I'm going to sound a bit "agricultural " here but isn't it a case of putting the camera into the focuser and plugging the usb into the laptop , opening sharpcap and then pressing connect . It will invariably be out of focus at that point and you may have to mess with the exposure ( on the panel to the right ) . I use a QHY camera and do the same as i've described to you  :) 

     

    This was a frustrating night I must admit. It wasn’t a simple as plugging in and playing with exposure. I literally saw a black screen the whole time, no stars, no star fields, nothing. I pointed at the moon and it got brighter but still couldn’t make out a thing no matter the setting.

    I ended up doing visuals only for the rest of the night and snapped a Jupiter + 4 moons from my iPhone. Quality stinks so I can’t post it here because it’s not up to any standard really lol.

    My Travelscope is really proving its limitations…I suspect I can’t see a thing w/the ZWO because it’s just too much for the scope to handle. That is, unless I’m doing something outrageously wrong then I can’t imagine it could be anything else.

    I’ll have to keep playing with it but have to be honest…got a bit disappointed tonight.

  20. 6 minutes ago, Stu1smartcookie said:

    I'm going to sound a bit "agricultural " here but isn't it a case of putting the camera into the focuser and plugging the usb into the laptop , opening sharpcap and then pressing connect . It will invariably be out of focus at that point and you may have to mess with the exposure ( on the panel to the right ) . I use a QHY camera and do the same as i've described to you  :) 

     

    I guess that's true, I just don't want to screw anything up.  When you don't know you don't know!

    • Like 2
  21. 8 hours ago, Stu1smartcookie said:

    Hi , how about starting just looking through your scope . It’s 70mm objective lends itself to wide field views so a 25mm eyepiece will let you see objects like the Beehive cluster , double stars , and of course the moon . The Az-gti is a fantastic bit of kit that , when used correctly will take you to many objects that will be visible in your scope. The camera you have will show the moon in great detail via your pc when connected . I do understand your point though .. although I love watching reviews , it’s easy to get confused . Buy the book “Turn left at Orion”. Most people swear by it . It will help you see the capabilities of your scope . Sometimes reading is better than watching videos . 
     

    Ordered the book the other day and shipment is en route!  I am halfway decent with the scope itself and know the basics of SynScan and north-aligning, so I'm ok there.  And I've gotten up to speed with all my eyepieces and their limitations and abilities so comfortable with that.

    I suppose it's the camera and software that is clogging my head now.  I have no background in photography whatsoever, and here I am looking at people talking about ISO and exposure time and flats and darks and gain, binning and histograms and polar aligning and hydrogen filters processed through Autostakkert and Registax...and I'm sitting here wondering how to take a color picture🤣

    • Like 2
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