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Is the SupaTrak AUTO worth the extra cost?


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Hey all! My first post here.

I've been interested in astronomy for as long as I can remember and am only now able to buy a 'scope. After trawling through so many websites, articles and forums I've come to the conclusion that the Skywatcher Explorer 130p is probably best for me to start with. My main goals to start are to look at planets and if possible, bright galaxies/nebulae. Maybe some fine details on the moon too. I initially wanted a refractor, but after reading I think a reflector is a better choice?

So, if the 130p is the right choice, what about the SupaTrak AUTO version? It's an extra £50, and I can't decide if I should go for it or not. Having the ability to point at an object and not have to worry too much about re-aligning every few minutes would be handy, but is it worth the extra £50? Having never used a proper telescope at all I'm clueless.

Any advice appreciated! :)

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The multi speed ra drive for the EQ2 http://www.firstlightoptics.com/skywatcher-mounts/skywatcher-ra-motor-drive-for-eq2.html cost £62 (you will eventually decide to get one) so the Supatrak mount will cost less in the end. The ability to let the mount track automatically whilst observing or allowing someone else view through the eyepiece or doing a little basic imaging shouldn't be underrated. The Supatrak mount is also easier to use if you haven't used an EQ mount.

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Thanks to both! Is the GOTO really worth the extra straight away, as my first 'scope? I'm torn because I really didn't want to spend more than £200 right now. I could probably stretch to £217 for the supatrak, but I'm not sure if I could go all the way to £285 for the GOTO model right now. Is it a waste of money to go for anything less than goto?

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.... Is it a waste of money to go for anything less than goto?

Many folks on here manage just fine without GOTO or a motorised mount. £200 will get you into 6" aperture territory if you don't mind "driving" the scope yourself  :smiley:

I did have an SuperTrak Auto with the maksutov-cassegrain 127mm on it. The mount "did what it says on the tin" but the tripod legs are really thin and spindly and did not do the scope justice really. If the GOTO version has better tripod legs then that would be an improvement in stability at least.

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