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Found 99 results

  1. TS Optics Photoline 90mm Triplet On reflection (or should that be through the lens of reality?) this was overpriced at £800, so is now reduced accordingly In excellent condition, I gave a small writeup about this when I bought it, and it is still an excellent scope. However it has been losing out to the 60 and 76 Tak and now spends all of its time alone, safely flight-cased. Don't leave this scope to suffer a lonely and unused life. Buy it and catch some great views this winter! Payment: PayPal (buyer pays fees) or bank transfer (preferred). Postage: Not included. Collection from Nottingham, UK is free (of course), otherwise you will need to arrange your own courier.
  2. I have already posted my first astrophotographic session report in the telescope review thread: Tecnosky 80/480 APO FPL53 Triplet OWL Series - Review. But since that is more of a general review/diary of my experience with the new telescope, I feel some of the issues I am having are being buried and they will probably get more visibility if I post them - in a more synthetic version - in a dedicated thread. So, a few nights ago (October, the 5th) I took out my new telescope for its first light. All the photos have been taken with the 0.8x flattener/reducer and the Optolong L-Pro 2" filter attached to the reducer. The camera is an astromodified Nikon D5300. The only processing the following pictures have consists in this: - AutomaticBackgroundExtractor - ColorCalibration - Stretch Here we have a 90s shot of M31. And here's a mosaic generated with the AberrationInspector script. What I do like: - tightest, smallest, roundest stars I have gotten since I started doing astrophotography at the end of January. Obviously comparing it to what I have been achieving with a kit 70-300mm zoom lens, these can't be anything else but better by orders of magnitude What I don't like: - star shape not consistent in all areas of the image - residual chromatic aberration, especially on stars that are not round: there's clearly some red and blue edges visible I didn't expect this from an apochromatic refractor, but maybe it's just because the stars are kinda "smeared", so not all light is focused at the same spot? I don't see this around the center of the image (or, at least, the problem is less pronounced). Maybe I have some tilting in my imaging train/sensor? I have been doing some reasoning about it and it seems like a combination of tilting and/or backfocus spacing. According to the following image about backfocus spacing: if the stars are elongated radially, the sensor is too close, if they are elongated tangentially, the sensor is too far. But to me it seems I have a little bit of both: in the top right corner, for example, the stars look radially elongated, in the bottom right, they look tangentially elongated. Top left they look tangentially elongated, bottom left also, but a little less. Seems like there has to be some tilting as well, otherwise they would all have a symmetric shape on all corners, correct? How do I determine - is there even a way - if the issue is due to tilting only, backfocus only, or the combination of the two? Is there a sure proof way of checking for tilting? Like, rotating the camera and taking pictures with, say, the camera at 0°, 90°, 270° and 360°? If there's tilting, the pattern of the star shapes should follow the camera, correct? I also tried splitting the channels in R, G, and B components, doing a star alignment of the blue and red channels with the green as a reference, and recombining the channels. The blue and red edges become a lot less evident, which is good, but obviously the star shapes remain the same. In my Telescopius gallery you can also find two other images, Capella and Capella Mosaic showing pretty much the same issues. Also, one issue with the guide camera: ZWO ASI 224MC. When attached to the guide scope (Artesky UltraGuide 60mm f/4), I can't seem to get a "sharp" focus, I even tried on the Moon, and the best I got was a soft lunar disc, with some major features visible, mainly by change of color/brightness (the maria, for example), but no details. The image still seemed blurred/bloated. Is it because of lack of IR blocking filter? I tried the same camera attached to the main refractor, with the L-Pro filter (which blocks UV and IR, as well) and I could focus perfectly. Do I need an IR block filter for guiding or even if the stars appear a little soft, the camera guides just fine? Matteo
  3. I have been waiting for this telescope for almost five months. Since May, 19th, to be precise. The day I went to the TS Italia store and saw for the first time the SLD model, model now discontinued. I even missed the last available piece just for a few days, once I finally placed my order, June, 25th. It was to be replaced by a newer model, available at the end of the Summer. Boy, am I glad I did miss it. The wait was definitely worth it. The new and improved model is simply beautiful. I fell in love with it as soon as I saw it on the Tecnosky website a few weeks ago, when they posted the product sheet. But in person, it's even more beautiful. So, the people from the store emailed me Friday, October the 2nd, telling me that it was finally available for pickup. I read the message only a whole hour later and it was soon going to be closing time. I started calling at 4:30 PM and I finally managed to get my phone call through at around 5:05 PM. The store closes at 6:00 PM and doesn't reopen until Monday. And it's 40 minutes away from where I live. I made it there in 35. There was no way I was going to have to wait till Monday, knowing my scope was only a few minutes away. So, here's the pre-unboxing picture: - top left, brown box, behind: Vixen clamp for guide-scope - top right, white box: 60mm f/4 guide-scope - top left, white boxes: T2 Nikon ring, 30mm spacer, adjustable spacer - center, behind white boxes: Optolong L-Pro 2" filter - right of filter: spacers mounted and already calibrated for 55mm backfocus, for eventual use of the ZWO ASI 224MC camera with the refractor - top right, Bahtinov mask - underneath the white boxes, top left: Losmandy bar to attach telescope to my NEQ6 Losmandy saddle - big box underneath all of the above: Tecnosky 80mm f/6 FPL-53 OWL Triplet, with carrying case and 0.8x 4 elements flattener/reducer - ZWO black case: ZWO ASI 224MC guide-camera / planetary camera - front left: Talisker 57° North and two glasses (don't mind the shape of the glasses, they are the closest to Whisky suitable glasses that I currently own...) ready for me and my wife to celebrate the end of the wait - front right: box for the aforementioned Whisky I actually waited for yesterday (Saturday, the 3rd) for the unboxing, because I wanted my best friend Omar to be present and help me with filming and taking pictures. We have been friends since we went to kindergarten and we always have had astronomy as a common interest. It just so happens, to my immense surprise, that my telescope is actually SN. 0001, so I own the first telescope ever produced of this new series. The certificate is also very promising, with a Strehl ratio of 0.974 and a Ronchi test that seems very well behaved. I like a little less the red edges on the lenses, but I guess only time and a proper visual - and astrophotographic - session will be able to tell. Obviously the "new equipment curse" didn't help, but we got almost a whole hour with clear sky patches and obviously I couldn't pass up the opportunity. I quickly setup with the bare minimum necessities for a visual observation and me, my wife and my best friend Omar - who helped with the staging, recording and directing of the unboxing event - took a quick look at the Moon, Saturn, Mars, M31 and Perseus Double Cluster. I can definitely understand now, even if the seeing wasn't perfect, and my eyepieces didn't offer enough magnification (25mm and 10mm give me 80x and 200x, with my C8, but with a native focal length of 480mm, even with a Barlow 2x, we could only achieve about 38x and 96x, respectively), what people mean when they say that an apochromatic refractor brings out the objects from the background sky. The contrast was stunning, the stars were absolute points, pinpoint, small and sharp (with my C8 they always have kind of a "blob" feeling), the contrast on the Moon was fantastic and I could see many details, despite it being almost full, and only at 48-96x. I think it passed the visual test with honors. I was also very happy to be able to see the Double Cluster all in the same field of view for the first time. Saturn was well defined, could clearly make out the rings - don't recall, in all the excitement, rush and cycling between me, my wife and my friend, if I saw the Cassini division, but I'll definitely try again next clear sky night. Mars was also beautiful, could clearly see its rusty red color, the polar cap and some darker, black features on the surface. I really can say it's a beautiful telescope, very well made and machined. The attention to details is really of another level, the paint finish is very nice and matte. Also very lovely all the different red and black anodized surfaces, they really give it a nice finish and personality. The focuser is also the best I have ever had on a telescope. Very smooth, precise, with no backlash. Coming from a C8 where every touch of the focuser throws off the image all over the place and the backlash is quite significant, I really appreciated how easy it was to fine tune focusing with a proper focuser, especially with the 10:1 focusing knob. I can't wait to be able to take the first pictures of some star field, to check if even photographically the telescope lives up to my expectations. I hope to get pinpoint stars corner to corner and that the backfocus won't be something too hard to make perfect. Here's some accessories. Optolong L-Pro 2" filter, Bahtinov mask, Losmandy dovetail to replace the Vixen one the telescope comes with, Nikon T2 ring and spacers to use the ASI 224MC with the correct backfocus directly on the telescope, instead of a guide-camera. Here's the 60mm f/4 guide-scome, with Vixen clamp. And the ZWO ASI 224MC guide-camera. Here's the mandatory celebration beer, at Corte dell'Orso (the Bear's Courtyard). It's a Belgian sour beer, lambic style. Oudbeitje by Hanssens Artisanaal, with added strawberries. A very nice beer, sour, tart and fruity. Could definitely taste the strawberries. Cheers! Here's a couple of pictures of the full setup, with everything mounted on my Sky-Watcher NEQ6 Pro. The setup is in its astrophotographic configuration: mount, telescope, guide-scope, guide-camera, filter, flattener/reducer and at the end the Nikon D5300 astromodified. All controlled by Astroberry on my Raspberry Pi 4 4GB, conveniently mounted on a bar across the two telescope rings. And finally a close up of the rig.
  4. Hi. I am looking for some advice for my cousin who is looking at getting a new telescope. He is not the type to go for a cheaper option and is looking at the 120 esprit, as i said not cheap. I believe that his intended use for this scope is lunar/planatary viewing and possibly some astrophotography of the moon/planets, he has a unmodified canon 5d mk iv DSLR. I instead recommended the skywatcher 120 evostar ED since it's a lot cheaper, but still supposed to have good optics. Would there be much difference in visual between these two scopes? e.g more chromatic aberation in the doublet, or in pictures. I have no idea on what mount to recommend either. Would appreciate some direction and recommendations on these two scopes, or possibly other scope/mount combinations. As a dob owner, i have no idea on the photography side, or mount types.
  5. Hello! I have been really inactive here, so apologies. Here are a few images of the Solar Eclipse, happened on 21 June 2020. It was annular, but partial from Mumbai region (around 60% covered). Maximum phase of the eclipse was at around 11:30 a.m. IST. This is actually onset of our 4-5 months of monsoon season, so getting decent skies was a tough part. Luckily got decent cleared patches here and there with occasional rains. I had to use whatever I had to make a comfortable view of the eclipse, thanks to the lockdown. I simply took a box, made a whole of the size of the eyepiece on one end, cut the opposite side and attached a paper. I had to do little bit here and there attachments for perfect angle. But was really happy with the results. One of the best experience was when I was seeing the Sun while it was drizzling at the same time. Thanks! -Rhushikesh Deshpande.
  6. Hi everyone, about a month ago i got my first telescope. Wasn't sure what to get but i wanted something portable and easy to setup and use. After some internet "research" i decided to go for a refractor on a manual alt/az mount. The telescope was on a 50% sale so i decided to go for it , the Meade infinity 90. The package: The scope came in one big box, everything was inside. Included was the optical tube, the mount, 3 eyepieces (6.3mm, 9mm and 26mm), a 2x barlow lens, 90 degree diagonal, red dot finder, an eyepiece holder for the mount and a few manuals. The optical tube: The tube has a 90mm (3.5in) aperture and 600mm focal length. It looks and feels as a quality instrument, it has a small dew shield and the focuser is smooth when you move it back and forward. As expected the lens looks to be coated. It has a dovetail bar on it with 3 holes for screws. The mount: Light but stable, made of aluminium. It has 3 extendable legs, and 2 slow motion cables (alt/az). One screw to mount the tube on on top (adjustable back and forward). The eyepieces and barlow: All 3 are modified achromat eyepieces, the lenses are made of glass and are OK for the beginner, but i would suggest upgrading if you can. The barlow is bad i even think that the optics are plastic (not sure), it is usable if you don't have other options but this should be the first upgrade in my opinion. Observing: First light: The telescope arrived in the morning so the first thing i did after a quick setup was to adjust the red dot finder. I looked at some mountains about 20km away, the view was nice and very detailed using all eyepieces. Combining the 6.3mm with the barlow got me a bit blurry view, but the barlow in combination with the other eyepieces was ok. Night came and it was a moonless and clear night (only light pollution from the city i live in). I saw orion right infront of me, "marked" it with the red dot finder where i thought M42 should be and looked through the 26mm eyepiece. It was a bit blurry but after adjusting the focus i could see some nice pinpoint stars and also something fuzzy, i realized it was the orion nebula. After letting my eyes adjust to the view for a few minutes i started seeing 2 faint "wings" on both sides and in the center were 4 very tiny stars, i didn't expect to see that on my first night. I followed my target for about 15 minutes using the slow motion controls , it was easy to do. Also tried the 9mm eyepiece and with it the 4 stars were more easily seen but the faint clouds got fainter so i moved back to the 26mm. Next target was venus, i tried all eyepieces + with combination with the barlow. It looked like a very bright half moon without any details. When using the barlow the view was ok but purple glow was showing around the planet, without the barlow the purple wasn't noticeable. I also looked at the star Sirius which looked nice, bright and much bigger then any other star i could see that night. After Venus went down i decided it was enough for day one. Moon: I expected it to look good, but not this good. I was observing the moon for a couple of nights until it got full. I could see a lot of details at the terminator , with low and high magnification. When the moon was full it was very very bright and it looked best with the smallest magnification using the 26mm eyepiece. Jupiter and Saturn: I got 2 opportunities to look at these 2, the first time i think the "seeing" was bad. I could only see Jupiters 4 moons and the planet was a bright disc without any details at any magnification i tried. Saturn also wasn't very good, i could see the rings but they were blurry and "dancing" around. But the next time i had the chance to look at these planets the conditions were much better, first target was again Jupiter. With the 26mm eyepiece i could see a white disc with 4 moons.With the 9mm i could see the moons again but now the disc had very faint 2 bands without any color. The view was best with the 6.3mm eyepiece, the 2 bands were clearly visible and on the upper belt on the right side there was a small dark dot, i am not sure if it was anything . Next target was Saturn, event with the 26mm eyepiece i could see that it has rings, i switched to the 6.3mm right away and wow there it was, Saturn and its rings clearly visible, i even think i could spot the cassini devision, but it might have been my eyes playing tricks. I tried using the barlow on both targets but it was making the image blurry, but at this point i had purchased a higher quality barlow and the views were very nice with it , but the max magnification i could use that night was 133x, anything higher and the image was getting wobbly (probably that was due to the atmosphere that night). After that some clouds came in and it was time to get back to bed (got up just to see the planets in 4am). Conclusion: I think i got what i wanted, a small and very portable telescope for some basic amateur observing. I do recommend this telescope to anyone as a first telescope or even to an experienced astronomer who is looking for something light, portable and being able to set it up and start observing in 2 minutes. Also i would recommend you replace all of the eyepieces and the barlow. I got me a few plossl eyepieces and a nice barlow, it was worth it. Feel free to ask me anything regarding this telescope i will be more than happy to answer. Sorry for any spelling mistakes this review probably contains Also i am attaching a few images i took directly off the eyepiece using my smartphone (handheld). The Telescope The Moon: The Moon: Venus: Saturn: Jupiter:
  7. I saw the StellaMira shown off at IAS, and it's incredibly exciting. They're a bit a lot out of budget for me so I'm thinking I may save for one of them in the future. Wondering if any owners of the 85 or 104 have had any hands on time with one yet? Just to wet the whistle. I wonder how they'll compare against the Esprit 80 or 100? I put it on Twitter and got a few comments about how it'll have to out-perform the Sky-Watcher.
  8. Hello all, New to the hobby and eager to learn information about where to start. Mostly interested in planet viewing, especially the moon. Looking to start out and need the portability as i may have to get out of town a ways to really get a good look at the heavens. I'm considering either a set of 20x50 or 20x80 binoculars (tripod mounted) or getting a Meade StarPro AZ 90mm telescope. Both are within 50$ of each other online. Wondering what would be my best bet for starting out, I will be staying focused on the moon for now, and thats my #1 priority (seeing the moon in extreme detail) but may soon get into farther planets/galaxy observation. I greatly appreciate any advise. thank you.
  9. Skywatcher skymax 90mm mak or Skywatcher evostar 90mm. which one is better for planetary?
  10. Who knew renovating a house could take so long - and it's still a long way from being finished (maybe I shouldn't have tried to tackle it all myself...) But having finally uncovered some of the boxes containing my kit, and with a bit more free time than normal, I decided to have another go, starting with one of the top targets this time of year. (I am working from home, honestly). I felt like I was learning again from scratch. But at least I've discovered the masked stretch. This image might be over-saturated for some tastes, but what can I say, it's the first time I've managed to get any colour in my stars! 20x10 mins L 10x300s RGB Altair Astro Wave 115 refractor, SBIG STF8300M, GM1000HPS (never managed to get it to track unguided, but at least it can be guided now)
  11. It figures! First clear night in ages and the pollen is as thick as..well, something really thick. Up to now, I have been fairly careful to avoid dust getting down the tube, but pollen is going to be unavoidable for the next several weeks. So...what does one do? Are there some do and don't things I should be aware of? It looks like my mirror comes out fairly easy (SkyWatcher 10" ). I'm guessing "chuck into the dish washer on the pot scrubber setting" is probably a really bad idea. What then, is the plan? What chemicals/detergents should be used...or maybe all chemicals should be avoided? Is it a no-touch surface? Is there perhaps some magic spray that one uses? I do have a can of electronics air that I plan to use from a safe distance to persuade away loose pollen, and that may be enough for the present.
  12. Hi, want to get a new telescope, SkyWatcher Evostar 90 EQ2 or SkyWatcher heritage 130p? i saw many suggested refractor is good for planets, i mostly target planets, moon and some star only, live in city. need some advice. thanks.
  13. Hi, i have a Celestron ExploraScope 70AZ, when i look at the saturn or jupiter (low or high magnification) the picture is clear if the object is at middle of my viewing but blurry and color mismatch if the object is at left side of the viewing.
  14. Patbloke

    IMAG1343

    From the album: The Great White

    This is a Skywatcher 150mm Frac that I bought slightly battered and bruised... she was old school blue but she's had a make over and is now the pride of my fleet :-)
  15. Hello all! I have been using my Skywatcher 8” Dobsonian for some time now, and decided I wanted a good refractor with an EQ mount as my next scope. I chose the Skywatcher Evostar Pro 80mm with an LX70 EQ5 mount. This seems to be a great scope to compliment my Dob, but I'm still getting used to the EQ mount! Found some good Youtube videos and am hoping for a clear night soon to really give it a workout! Any advice is appreciated!
  16. I bought this second hand, but it was almost untouched, and a relative bargain to boot. New it costs 1199 EUR from TS (approx. £1035 as of 08/03/2019 but who has any idea how this might fluctuate). Highlights: Apo air-spaced triplet with FPL53 Multiple focus positions thanks to removable tube segments 2.5” rack and pinion focuser, rotatable, dual speed controls, 6kg payload, with printed scale CNC tube rings and dovetail supplied Retractable dew shield First impressions: It’s a really nice box. Whilst it’s described as a ‘transport case’ the supplied storage box is sturdy and well made. Inside, the foam fit is precise bordering on tight. It’s actually mildly difficult to get the scope out of the box. Things get a little easier if you loosen the tube rights slightly, allowing for some tube rotation, and a longer term fix will be some straps to aid lifting the scope out vertically. The scope itself feels very well made, and is what I’m choosing to refer to as ‘reassuringly weighty’. At just over 4kg (without diagonal, eyepiece, or finder) there are definitely lighter options available, but it’s hardly a heavyweight. The finish is powered coat white, which looks and feels very nice. The focuser is very smooth (compared to my SW ED80) and feels pleasingly solid. I’m not going to be testing the stated 6kg payload any time soon, but I can easily believe it will be able to handle it. The dew shield is held in position with a single thumbscrew, and whilst it’s retractable credentials are clearly warranted, it only seems to extend a couple of centimetres. As it happens, this takes the overall length down to 450mm which was the very top end of my acceptable range in order to meet my ‘travel’ requirement. The focuser body also incorporates a finder shoe, but if you wanna finder then you have to supply your own as there’s nothing included. The idea of having additional tube segments is that you don’t have to rack out the focuser so far, and so improves stability. This also allows for multiple reducer/flattener options for imaging use. The TS website details the specific configurations using their recommended equipment which provide a faster f/4.9 option for sensors up to 36mm, or a full frame flat image at the standard f/6.6. I might be exploring these options later, but for now, this is going to be for visual use. First light: OK - this barely counts, but I was impatient. Predictably enough, first evening with a new telescope and it’s raining. But I did manage a pretty decent look at my neighbours TV aerial and chimney stack. They need some re-pointing. … The following evening (9th March 2019) was less rainy, but much the same for cloud, all but for about 30 minutes of relatively clear sky, interrupted regularly by patchy cloud. So still not great. However, my ambitious setup to allow for cooling paid off and I did manage a few minutes of actual use with a SW 28mm eyepiece. The Baader Zoom I also treated myself to for my travel use is frustratingly still not dispatched. And when I say set-up, I mean just carrying everything outside. I’m using this on the SW AZ-Gti mount, and a Manfrotto tripod I had already, so it’s very easy to pick up and take outside. I was using the scope with one of the two removable sections in place (this is how it is stored in the supplied case) and was able to achieve focus with a 2" diagonal without having to rack out excessively. Sirius was an obvious target to the south, and an easy hit. Brilliantly bright, as expected, and a blue-ish white colour. The upper half (the rest was below my sightline from home) of Canis Major was easy to see, with several of the background stars also visible. Despite the less than great seeing, the view was impressive. Stars were tight and there was no obvious chromatic aberration. Moving up to Betelgeuse, it’s orange-red brilliance was very pleasing, and again I was able to make out some of the fainter surrounding stars. Overall the view was very impressive, and bright. My only real comparison is with my SW80, and of course I now have over 25% more light, so that’s to be expected. But still, it makes an obvious difference. I wasn’t able to note any CA or distortion, and a quick full visible spectrum (no filters) star test reflected spot on collimation and no apparent astigmatism. Alas, the break in the patchy clouds did not last long, and I was soon packing up for the night and heading out for a beer. I’m looking forward to getting some more quality time with this kit, and who knows, I might even align the AZ-Gti next time and write a brief review for that too.
  17. Hi all, I am thinking of adding one of these to my Christmas list. I want it primarily for astrophotography with my aps-c Canon on the Star adventurer mount, with a sturdy photo tripod (I have all of those already). For £399 it seems like the best combination of value and performance to me, but what's your opinion? https://www.altairastro.com/starwave-70ed-f6-travel-refractor-telescope-with-2-crayford-focuser-finder-diagonal-eyepiece.html thanks Mike
  18. found a $40 refractor at a goodwill today. will include some pictures, is it worth the money? has a EQ mount included, and for just 40 I'm seriously considering it. tips? it has no eyepeices included, but the mount looks sturdy and the i don't yet have a refractor so i really want it.. if its worth it. pretty sure its worth over $200 but idk 4 sure. remember that i know so little about refractors that i had to google how they worked.. again. but that mount alone would be worth it, even if the optical tube isn't. please feel free to tell me its not worth it, i don NOT want to waste money on this.
  19. A new (old) 'frac added to my wee family of scopes. From an Astromedia kit of a slightly smaller copy of one of Galileo's refractors. Not had a chance to view the night sky yet, but get a 12x magnification, so should be able to see the moon in a little more detail. Field of view is small, but as one of the first kind of telescopes made this was cutting edge back in the day I guess! Hope for a chance tonight to observe something if the clouds permit!
  20. Hello guys, I may have found exactly the forum I need here I would be really glad if you could help me a bit please : I love stargazing on the mountain next to home (low light pollution), but now I want to level up. I mean, I'd like to use a device that is better than my eye to see the night sky. The problem is I am quite lost between telescopes, lenses, reflectors, refractors, and hybrids devices etc. So here I am, coming for your advice that will be, I am sure, of great help. Here's my question : what device is best suited for my use ? I'd like to see constellations and close deep sky like big galaxies (andromeda M31 for example). I am aware that refractor lenses are less bright than reflexion telescopes but I'm not certain which one to buy. > The main purpose would be a looking through device, but ideally if I can plug my Canon DSLR it would be fantastic. What are best brands for an amateur ? I prefer to pay more but once than cheap but twice and have a budget of around 250-300 € (if one is a bit above but really effective I can go a higher). Thank you a lot in advance for your time and advice ! Golfox2
  21. Hey everyone ! I am new to this site , don't know how to properly use it , but hope someone will help me As the topic says , I am trying to buy my first telescope , and am quite excited for it. I have been reading wuite a lot about astronomy , so I know most of the basics , but have many many unanswered questions ... xD I was originally looking for a scope for viewing the planets , but well , after learning more , I thought that maybe a scope that can show only planets will eventually get a BIT boring , and will not be used much (although I still admire the planets and still will want to observe them). Just a quick info on me : I live in a city , have no place to go / or car to transport my scope to a darker place , live in a building , hope to observe from the rooftop. My ONLY CONCERN about this is that from my balcony I can see Vega at night , and as depressing as it may sound , nothing more .It may be because there are buildings covering my view (I at least hope so that's the case) or light pollution , although the place I live is in the orange to red zone in many light pollution maps. So originally I stumbled upon the Orion Starseeker IV 80mm GoTo refractor. http://www.telescope.com/Telescopes/GoTo-Computerized-Telescopes/Orion-StarSeeker-IV-80mm-GoTo-Refractor-Telescope/c/1/sc/15/p/113919.uts Thought it was good for the GoTo and stuff , but after doing some research , got concerned about the sturdyness of the mount.Some said it was too shaky (I have almost constant winds of about 10mph at night here) . Plus after some while I discovered DeepSpace and got even more interested in it than the planets . So I started to seek for reflectors. After a while I discarded Dobsonians as an option , cause I do want to do astrophotography ( just amateur , not gonna spend money on expensive DSLR s or sth) . And maybe in the future I will want to do some more serious astrophotography , so it will be very sad , if I have to change the scope later , if I want to... So after doing some research I am currently watching these scopes . 1. Orion 9827 AstroView 6 Equatorial Reflector Telescope . https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0000XMSR0/ref=psdc_499154_t1_B01N2HJBQC 2. SkyWatcher Explorer-150P EQ3-2 Reflector. https://www.firstlightoptics.com/reflectors/skywatcher-explorer-150p-eq3-2.html The only downside of these is that they're not GoTo (The second one has an option , but it's out of my price range) , but I think an additional RA motor drive will do the thing. At lease if I will be able to find anything in my sky ... That's it ! If you own/have used any of these scopes tell me more about them ! What you like/dont like etc. ANY GENERAL ADVICE IS APPERCIATED . Thanks !
  22. I'm considering to build a nice all-round wide field 150mm binoscope, mainly to observe DSOs and, why not, some planet observations. The priority is wide field observation with good contrast at 5 pupil exit, and also good contrast on smaller DSOs at 2-3 exit pupil, so I guess the focal length should be 900mm at maximum. I don't mind too much some chromatic aberration observing the moon and planets at 100 X, I'm not aiming higher than 100-150 X for planets. I want this binoscope to be a keeper for life. I'm considering these refractors, and I would like to hear your suggestions and recommendations based on your expertise: (1) TS 152mm F5.9 http://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/language/en/info/p2229_TS-152mm-f-5-9-Gro-feld-Refraktor-mit-3--Crayford-Auszug.html (2) iStar WFX 150mm F5 http://www.istar-optical.com/refractors-ii.html (3) Celestron Omni 150mm F5 http://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p4010_Celestron-Omni-XLT-1590R-Rich-field-Refractor---Optical-Tube-Assembly.html I plan to use high end 2" barrel eyepieces, like Ethos 13 for the 2-3 exit pupil views, and other eyepieces suited for binoscopes (less that 6.2 cm diameter) for the 5 exit pupil range. Which pair of refractors do you think will do the job better and more cost-effectively? I'll consider other refractors you may suggest. Thanks in advance
  23. I just bought an Istar 150mm F12 lens and cell and will be building the telescope to hold it. The guy I bought it from has generously given me some excellent advice, so I know where I will get the aluminium tube and how I will cut it, how I will plan the light path and baffles, and how I will flock it internally. He also suggested a couple of focusers that he has used and likes. I think I will probably go for a Moonlite focuser as I have one on a newtonian and I really like the smoothness and precision of it, but I am also considering a couple of others. Do any of you have either the TS Monorail or the Baader Steeltrack? What do you like and dislike about them? I will be using the scope for visual observing only and the heaviest eyepiece I will use on it will be my Explore Scientific 30mm 82° at 1.4kg. Thanks.
  24. Another day another Takahashi ......... when will I ever escape this vicious circle ??? Just when I had resolved not to buy any more astro gear, someone advertised this scope at a very, very tempting price.... here we go again, my dear wife just shook her head when I told her I would be away for a couple of days picking up another telescope. Enter the Takahashi FSQ106ED build # 89 of 2014, in immaculate condition with a genuine Takahashi FSQ case, Extender-Q 1.6X, Clamshell and a pair of LE eyepieces. How could I say no? To say that I was happy driving the 700 alms back home would be an understatement ..... Thanks for viewing
  25. Hi all. Considering a new scope, and specifically a new refractor scope specifically for lunar and planetary work. Seen the Altair Starwave F11 102mm achromatic OTA which doesn't break the bank too much. With the longer focul length CA shouldn't be too noticible, and as I have no intention of doing any imaging with it then an APO scope seems a little expensive just for visual use. Anyone have one of these for visual use at all? Any feedback (good/bad) would be welcome. http://www.rothervalleyoptics.co.uk/altair-starwave-102mm-f11-achromat-refractor-telescope-with-2-crayford-focuser.html
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