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This week was the first time I have had chance to head out with my setup for a few weeks, and I thought i'd try to connect up my 1100D for the first time and get some pictures however they didn't come out as expected and I think it's a focus problem.

I have a NEQ6 mount and a Skywatcher ED 80 scope attached to this connected directly to a laptop and controlled via stellarium, i started out doing some visual work on a few targets before deciding to put the T ring on my camera and try some imaging. I did put the camera into the diagonal which I think may impact to a degree but I don't think it's the problem, I took some shots and decided to put them on my ipad rather than view on the camera viewer due to size but basically they are mostly just dark images where a couple of them have dot's of coloured light.

When i viewed them on my desktop I could see different shades of darkness for lack of a better term, so I am under the assumption that my focus is out and is why i got a few coloured dots but mostly black. Now as right now I don't have backyard EOS to control the camera from my laptop, is there an easy way to try and get things focused correctly as I don't have the angle from my garden to try and pick out a distant object on the ground.

Question has been probably asked loads of times so apologies, but I have struggled to find an answer through my searching.

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The moon is a perfect target for trial focusing because you can't miss it!  Otherwise use a bright star such as Vega in liveview.

The diagonal will add quite a distance to the optical path and is the likely source of your problem.


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An example of it would be helpful here. Using the moon at first before the stars is a good start. Will get you close. I'd lose the diagonal myself. The less in in between the sensor and objective lenses the better at prime focus.

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I think the ED80 is designed to be used at prime focus with the focal reducer / field flattener otherwise you'll need an extension tube. I'm sure someone here can confirm.


Depends whether its an Evostar or Equinox, the former yes, I believe you are right.

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It is the evostar tube I have, I'll have to weigh up an extension tube or focal reducer as I'd rather not spend much more right now.

Moon wasn't visible when I tried so will have to try vega next time I get chance to break it out depending on the weather

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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  • 2 weeks later...

I agree that a Bahtinov mask is helpful, especially when combined with sending liveview to a laptop screen (one can see the spikes easier). The other solution is a bit more time consuming: You take a picture of a star, look at the maximum zoom of the picture on a camera's LCD (or a laptop screen) and evaluate its diameter, then take another one after SLIGHTLY changing the focus and evaluate again until it seems the diameter is the smallest. Clear skies!

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