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Hi guys,

I have started to improve my ep's with my scope but obviously would like to start getting some pictures of what im seeing also. I dont really know where to start, would I be able to use a webcam such as the spc880 flashed as i dont have a motor on my mount so dont know if i could attach the webcam and then opperate through the laptop to get images or would I need to go for a DSLR?

Any info would be great as seems such a waste not being able to get of the sights on film.

It would mainly be planetary possibly dso when a bit more experienced.

Any tips would be great.

thanks in advanve.

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manual tracking is relatively easy so yes you can use a webcam and laptop for imaging planets, however it may be a little wobbly so you will need to be gentle as an eq1 doesn't have a lot of wiggle room. A dslr is too big to put on an eq1 mount and to be honest you would only be able to image the moon with it even if it was usable.

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thanks rowan, was thinking I may pick up the flashed spc880 as looks good value for money and good place to start. i seen the kit on morgans which comes with the adaptor, filter and is pre flashed so would i basicaly be able to plug and play with this?

also have seen there is a tracking motor which can be added to the mount which comes with the 130 version of the astromaster and was thinking of adding this also, would this help with the use whilst having the webcam attached?

Im also thinking of getting a dob later this year so would this kit then be useful on that too or not as if i could use on that too then think i will go for it?

thanks.

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you can use a webcam on a dob. you will need to practice for a while though so expect a few dropped frames till you get used to the dob. As to the motor on the 130 yes it may help counteract somre of the wobbles in the mount and the camera should be plug and play once its flashed

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Cheers, think i will get it ordered soon then. Does the adaptor just act as the ep then and slot in to the holder or does it need to be mounted on some how?

Thanks again for the info

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Just to go back to your original question and to further clarify that DSO imaging would only be possible with an equatorial mount that is at least a HEQ5 or above. The objects are faint, requiring tracking that is accurate on a mount that is also accurately polar aligned. The Dob that you're thinking of getting later on this year would still only permit you to webcam the planets and the moon. DSO imaging starts with the mount. May I further recommend Steve Richards, "Making Every Photon Count" (FLO £19.95) as a great guide to all your imaging needs should you want to develop this further.

James

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Thanks James,

Obviously I'm still very new to this and learning all the time, I think at the moment its would just be nice to capture a few of the images that I see which are mainly planetary and lunar anyway to have a recored of them. I'm sure that at some point in the future I will have the desire to get more into the astrophography side of things.

Unfortunately I am not as patient as alot of the newbies I have seen on here and I did not save and research what I needed, I am a very off the cuff person and afer always looking at the stars and thinking WOW I just went online and brought the first telescope I saw that I liked the look of and thought if its a good name then should be good. Now I wish I had come on here first and done that research but I have what I have, which serves a purpose pretty well, but I do hope to improve my setup with time.

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What mount is your Astromaster on currently? If it's equatorial then an RA motor would help a lot and be more effective. But you can use a webcam on planets with ALt/Az or EQ mounts and if you have no motor then all that's needed is a steady hand and a bit of practise. Several folks have tried this with half reasonable results ;)

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Its on the mount that came with it which I belive is a EQ-2??????

I have just ordered the webcam from morgans so as soon as we get some clear skys and its arrived I can try it with manual tracking if not easy enough that way I may pick up the motor at the end of the month as looks easy to install on the mount and will only set me back about £40.

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Sounds good, and eq-2 will be fine. An RA motor is a doddle to install too so no worries there. Did you remember to ask for a pre-flashed webcam for the extra quid or two? You can do it yourself on XP but easier just to let them do it ;)

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Yeah I ordered the pre flashed bundle. Im ok with computers but find it so much easier to let others do it for me. I like to just plug 'N' play....

Just hope for some clear skies now then!!!

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Jana

A couple of things to remember when you use your webcam for the first time which threw me at first.

It might be obvious but worth metioning.

Make sure your object is really centred in your eyepiece and if you are using a barlow with webcam this becomes more important.

Your focus will be at a very different point.

If you are using Sharpcap remember to put the gain and exposure at a high setting to begin with. I thought when I first viewed Saturn via webcam that it was not there till I adjusted everything.

Best of luck and clear skies

Neil

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Hi Jana

A webcam will have a similar field of view as a 6mm eyepiece (or slightly more than a 10mm with a 2x Barlow).

If you have either of these then centre Saturn in one of these first before using the webcam. You will most likely have to alter the focus quite a bit also.

Hope this helps.

Paul

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