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Skywatcher 200p / EQ5 Upgrade


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Hi,

I would like some advice on 2 things, bit of a newbee.

1. I am looking at upgrade the Eye lens and would like to know what experts think of the Revelation Photo Visual Eypiece Kit and also opinions on 8mm 58 degree BST wide andle eyepice. Would it also be worth change the lens holder to the Skywatcher Crayford 10:1 that I have also seen on line?

2. The EQ5 tripod is non motorised. I am a bit confused / undecided wether to upgarde to Dual motor or a full Synscan full pro upgrade. This sounds a bit daft but does the Dual motor upgrade move scope on its own, ie do you tell it what to track or do you control it by the handeset buttons?, Can the Telescope still be controlled manually with either of this upgrades?

Thats about it. Thanks in advance for anybody that helps.

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Hi

In an effort to help, I have the Revelation Eyepiece and filter kit, I purchased this while possible still in a similar position to yourself. The items in this kit are of good quality, but some are of much more use than others... Whilst this kit appears to contain a wide variety of different magnification eyepieces, in use there is some question if the magnifications included are all required, from my experience the 32mm is outstanding for wide views, and the 20mm one gets a battering for general viewing, some of the higher magnification ones have limited use depending on "seeing conditions", the included filters are OK for trying out, but in use in the real world in my opinion is limited.

With regard to the EQ5 mount, the duel motors will allow you to move your mount via RA and DEC buttons via a handset, and will track at sideral rate, on whatever object you choose to view, but will not give you "GOTO" control of your mount, there are options with extra kit and a "mod" of the handset to allow control via a PC / Laptop.

Hope this helps a bit

Steve

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I would suggest that you avoid kit as you might not need them all. Buy separate plossls that suit your needs. I would suggest a 2x barlow, 8mm plossl, 15mm and 25mm.

A 58 degree is not quite wide field. You may want to invest in a Baader Hyperion 8mm 68 degree EP.

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The noob angle: I am within budgetary constraints so the idea of a couple of decent eyepieces plus a decent barlow is seeming like the best investment for me rather than a kit. The kits come with stuff you might otherwise not have purchased now and overall quality is bound to be lower.

I was fortunate enough to get a fairly decent barlow (which was very favourably reviewed by the Sky at night magazine) with my scope. If I choose carefully I can get the equivalent of twice as many eyepieces using it to halve the focal length of each.

It's worth calculating what the maximum magnification for your scope is in average to good seeing conditions. In my opinion there's not much point getting an eyepiece that gives you more magnification if you're not likely to be able to use it effectively.

I think mine gives a theoretical maximum with a 4mm eyepiece although I would have to double check that. Because of this I will go for a 10mm which is great for detail, with the barlow this covers the 5mm as well. A 40mm would then give me a total of 5mm, 10mm, 20mm and 40mm with the barlow for just the cost of 2 eyepieces. The BST ones on ebay have been highly recommended here so for about £80 to £90 it seems a good investment.

Don't take this as gospel though. Someone may come along and point out some more complex flaws in this thinking, as I said I am new to this and this is only my understanding so far!!!

cheers

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Hi sonof007. I suggest you read the pinned topic in this part of the forum 'Eyepieces - the very least you need'. Makes a lot of sense and covers most of the issues. I believe the actual FOV of a 40mm EP is restricted to the same as 32mm in a 1.25 inch focus tube so no particlar advantage in buying one! I learned that from another excellent thread on the website of the Swindon Astronomy Group. Sorry I don't seem to be able to copy and paste links at the moment. By the way it's not such a bad idea to buy an EP kit if you buy well second hand :-) My Celestron kit in mint condition was £80 very well spent! I'm finding uses for all the EPs and the Barlow.

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I believe the actual FOV of a 40mm EP is restricted to the same as 32mm in a 1.25 inch focus tube so no particlar advantage in buying one!

I did not know that. See, no idea what I'm talking about. :)

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2. The EQ5 tripod is non motorised.

The EQ5 and the tripod are different things. One is the mount, one is a tripod.

Regarding the mount. The dual axis motors will simply turn the mount at a factory set speed. You can speed it up and forward though to catch up with objects that may be leaving your view due to polar alignment etc. It wont turn to different things like a goto.

I have read that it is not worth upgrading the EQ5 to a goto because of the cost ot it against the cost of the actual mount, although, i believe opinion matters when it comes to moneys worth of stuff.

Why do you want to upgrade, is it so you can just have the goto functionality of the mount to help find things, or are you wanting to try Astrophotography. I only ask this, because if it is AP you are looking at, the EQ5 may not suffice.

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I have the EQ5 with the dual axis motors. the motors are very good but with hindsight I would have just bought the single axis RA drive, because as long as you have good polar alignment the dec motor is never really used, and in fact the motor gets in the way when polar aligning, so I took mine off and now just use the RA motor and tweak the dec axis by hand if needed. I would personally not get the goto upgrade for the mount if you were wanting this feature I would go for a HEQ5 Pro or maybe look for a second hand one.

Also I bought the revalation plossl kit, it's good for the money (the 32mm being very useful) but again with hindsight just as emadmoussa says I found I was only using a few of them, and have sold on most of them as I've upgraded my EP collection. I would if starting out again buy individual plossls with FL's I know I would use.

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with hindsight I would have just bought the single axis RA drive

+1 from me. It's the RA motor that is useful. It's great to be able to find something and then show your friends without it disappearing out of the eyepiece. For finding an object in the first place it's easier to unlock the drive and move the scope around using the RA and DEC knobs. The EQ5 with RA motor is a good entry-level imaging platform, provided you are happy staying with 60 second unguided exposures (which works great for me but it really depends what your eventual expectations are).

If you really want Goto then the Goto upgrade kit is your cheapest route, but others have suggested that you might, in time, have wished that you had saved the money and put it towards a more substantial mount instead.

The eyepiece question is much simpler, don't buy a kit, buy BST Explorer / Starguider EPs as you find them necessary. I have four and they are excellent for the money. I was tempted to get the full set of six but that's just nerdy completism and i could spend that £100 on something more useful.

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The Baader Hyperions are a bit soft on the 200P f/5 scope. I would suggest the BST Explorer/StarGuider already mentioned, very good on the 200P, also it is 60 degrees, not 58, I think it is the TMB clones (also called BST's in some quarters, just to confuse) that are 58 degrees.

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