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Newbie from Darlington


justbuggin
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Hi guys

I've been interested in astronomy since I was a kid, but finally been spurred into buying my first telescope now that I've got my hands on a decent DSLR. I've always fancied photographing deep space objects, but I realise that will depend on a mix of equipment and experience. I have a lot of experience in photography, on a professional basis, so I'm looking forward to learning a new apsect of that.

I live in a village a few miles outside of Darlington, so light pollution isn't as bad as it could be. Luckily I work on the Isle of Wight, so I get to spend every other week on the island, with it's lovely dark skies.

I'm about to embark on the hunt for a reasonable "starter" scope, so would welcome any advice offered. While I'm tempted to dive in and get a Skyliner 150P, I really want something with tracking and possibly a larger aperture if I can afford it, so I can take photographs. Budget would be up to £500, less if possible.

I look forward to reading previous posts and picking your collective brains!

Rob

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Welcome to the SGL.

It may sound counter intuitive but aperture is not the crucial factor when it comes to capturing deep sky objects like Nebula and galaxies, the tracking accuracy and stability of the mount is. Might I suggest that if astrophotography is your goal, you purchase the book "Making Every Photon Count." It is a fantastic introductory guide to the "dark art" of astrophotography and will help you to better understand all the challenges involved and allow you to better select equipment that is fit for the desired purpose.

http://www.firstlightoptics.com/books/making-every-photon-count-steve-richards.html

The demands of visual astronomy are somewhat different where tracking is nice luxury but not necessity (hence the popularity of the Dobsonian mount) and larger apertures will reveal more of the universe to you.

Clear skies,

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Hello Rob and welcome to SGL!! Another vote for Steve's book. With Astrophotography the mount is the all important bit of kit. If you have some good camera lenses you could use them rather than buy a telescope. Something around 200-400mm will take good images of deep sky objects. Aparture is not so important as you can simply keep the shutter open longer if you want to capture the faint stuff!

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Hi There,

Warm welcome to SGL...And another vote for 'making every photon count'...If you are intent on doing some imaging, then do invest in the book as it will save your hard earned cash in the long run :smiley: ..You mention getting a larger apperture scope for imaging, this does not always the way with maging, larger scope = beefier mount = more cash !. If you have a look at some of the images posted here, there are some excellent images produced with smaller apo refractors. However you are going to need a substantial mount and guiding gear.

Good luck with your choice.

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Hi Rob,

Welcome to SGL. I would suggest going for a scope on an equatorial mount with motor drive or GOTO. Depending on scope size you will need an EQ3 or EQ5 to fit your budget.

A Skywatcher 150p on GOTO mount is right at the top of your budget

http://www.firstlightoptics.com/reflectors/skywatcher-explorer-150pl-eq-3-pro-goto.html

Or you could look around for an ex-demo or second hand scope, that would save some money.

Robin

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Hi,

There is a second hand 200p on EQ5 GOTO on this site, but you need 50 posts to see it. It is also on Astrobuysell

http://astrobuysell.....php?view=70813

It is at the top of your budget, but would be a cracking scope for astrophotography. It is in Middlesboro so not far to go and see it, save on the postage too.

Robin

Edited by DrRobin
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