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Skywatcher 200p and Jupiter ... What's my mistake


kroy
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Hello Kroy I have the same scope as you and have had some terrific views of Jupiter this week. Banding was easily seen and I could just make out the great spot. My EPs were the BST series and 12 15 and 5 mm all gave good views, so it is possible for you to see Jupiter. Good luck for future viewing. Give it some time and practice and you will be well rewarded. If you can increase your EP collection it would help

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Similar setup to Sirius Starwatcher, and similar results when viewing Jupiter. The telescopes mirrors need to cool to ambient temperatures, be properly collimated and the atmospheric conditions overhead have to be good too. You need time, patience and conditions to get the better results. Sometimes, conditions change right before your eyes, as did when I last observed a Moon shadow transit across the face of Jupiter. That image will stay with me for ever. To be honest, the scale of Jupiter in Johns image above is about the size I visually see from my 8" scope, only Jupiter is sharper than portrayed above, but being so small requires you to observe for longer to see the Great Red Spot and any other details. Its been a long time since I used my standard 10mm EP. Maybe I should try again to see what I was missing before?

Keep trying, dont give up.

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So I should think. The standard lenses are not great its true but they are easily good enough to give perfectly satisfactory planetary views. 

I heartily endorse this, I think the constant harping about the standard SW lenses is much overdone and only encourages new comers in the view that this hobby is a never ending money pit. It doesn't have to be this way, I persevered with the standard lenses for some while and had a great time.

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Kory,

You mentioned '- Whats best for astrophotography?'

- that's an interesting question given you are talking about planets but from my experience (limited as it is) your scope is best suited to DSO (Dark Sky Objects), I have a Skywatcher 150 PDS and have found the following, (happy to provide more info on what I have tried),

Planets,

Get a cheap web cam and a laptop.

The best, well - cheapest and quick way - is to take some avi video via your scope (a cheap webcam will suffice, modified to remove the lens) and then stack the frames via Registax - you will be amazed by how much more you have. I'm still messing with this but the results so far are really good.

DSO,

You need an adapter and a DSLR camera, but again you replace the lens with a camera. The Cannon 450D seems to be the best shot for basic intro stuff. You still need to stack images (remember that this time you need to take them all individually, but also darks and flats etc.) and then stack them again via DSS (Deep Sky Stacker) or something similar.

If you have a laptop then I would suggest the web cam and Registax for planets, also check out the 'embarrassing Jupiter Webcam' forum at http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/76963-embarrassing-jupiters-webcam-clinic/

They are really helpful.

Good luck and let us know how you get on.

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I also use a 8 inch Newtonian scope. I find the planetary veiws to be outstanding. Yes I know I have a nice mirror set and its fl6 rather than fl5 but I still don't see why a 200p would give anything other than a cracking veiws of Jupiter, seeing permitting

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So I should think. The standard lenses are not great its true but they are easily good enough to give perfectly satisfactory planetary views.

I got my first scope, Heritage 130p, in the afternoon. By the time I'd set it up, adjusted RDF etc it was twilight and only 5-6 things visible naked eye. I pointed the scope at the brightest with the 25mm (26x) standard EP and it was obvious it was Jupiter in the NW part of the sky, and the sky was still quite light blue through the scope. Then popped in the standard 10mm (65x) EP (these were all I had) and had hints of banding although better with averted vision, and four moons all in a convenient line. I watched that planet for a long while only calling my wife to have a look once it was really dark (I really thought this Astronomy lark would be easy lol) .

If your image was small it sounds like the focussing was OK (it would get bigger de-focussed). But you say it was brown whereas Jupiter is quite bright. I would say you were focussed on something else, it wouldn't be Mars by any chance would it? That can often be said to be small and brown.

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You should be able to see Jupiter as a small dic with at least two bands plus the Galilean moons as bright points (may appear as tiny disks if the viewing is good)

Take a look at my review of the 130PM and about halfway down there is a sketch of Jupiter - that was seen with a 10mm or thereabouts EP in a smaller scope than yours ( review is here http://www.astro-baby.com/reviews/Sky-Watcher%20130PM/Sky-Watcher%20130PM%20Review.htm ).

I can only imagine viewing was bad OR your tracking was off - sometimes GoTo messes up on planets and misses the target - I have found this to be true with GoTo - the reasons are pretty complex but GoTo is not 100% reliable and doubly so with planets in my experience (though it can often get you pretty close).

If you could see the Galilean moons for sure then you must have been on target - if you couldn't see them then chances are you werent looking at Jupiter.

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It's a while since Kroy has replied, maybe he's succeeded! :D

200p and 6mm EP, fab.

However, I did have a particularly rough patch last winter when seeing was poop and no EP of any focal length would deliver a crisp image of Jupiter.

You just move on and enjoy something else instead. :)

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hello and welcome to the forum :smiley:

I've got the same scope (200p)really struggling to focus on some objects most things look like clusters,don't know if it's vibration from the tracking motors ? Upgraded most of my eyepieces to TV Plossils got me beat like.[emoji37]


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

The scope should provide sharp pinpoint focus on stars in the center of the view, even with the standard eyepieces supplied with the scope. Can you get sharp focus on anything, eg: the Moon, Jupiter, a single star ?

The tracking motors don't introduce vibrations, at least if the scope is balanced properly. 

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Hello to be fair it may well be the fact that I've never been out in the ideal conditions yet . I'm pretty new to this and all self taught though this forum,videos and books but the larger objects the moon are amazing planets like Saturn and Jupiter are a bit shimmery.

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"Shimmery" could just be the seeing conditions.

I re-acquainted myself with Jupiter for the first time since he's been back up a couple of nights ago.

The conditions weren't great, but it was still fab to see him again.

Plenty of detail through an 8" 'scope.

I used an 8mm, 7mm and 6mm EPs.

The 7mm gave the best views of the night at 171x.

I could clearly make out the 2 main bands with evidence of festoons and plumes.

The north and south temperate bands were more of a mush and blended together, but were still a subtly different shade towards each pole.

Oh and 3 moons too.

:)

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Seeing is a big problem with jupiter. Atleast in finland. I have a 200p on an equatorial. When I was starting, I could see banding on jupiter easily, problem was getting enough magnification to see soemthing interesting. Seeing will make the image sharpness flow and and flow  out. On very good nights you might have a good picture all the time. 200p is good enough that one night I saw this "broken pixel" in jupiter and wondered if my eyes are playing tricks on me. Then I checked stellarium and noticed that it had been io's shadow. This was with a collimated stock 200p with cheap non-stock eyepieces. I think a 12mm TS-ED. 

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  • 2 months later...

Oops.. Yes I finally got to see Jupiter - the problem was collimation of the scope... Next to image it... Working for with my cam

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I'm new to observing with a telescope in my case the Sywatcher 250px and get great views of Jupiter and can clearly see the bands, I have found it to be if anything too bright and have noticed others suggesting a blue filter which might be worth a try. However the thing I discovered last night was that by very gently pushing against the scope in the opposite direction to the movement across the eyepiece I was able effectively to manually track it and thus improve the sharpness of the image but quite a bit....I saw no Great Red Spot but it wasn't viewable but feel sure I could have seen it well with this technique. I was viewing with my stock 10mm EP and a 2x Barlow so my max magnification for now..... :)

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I'm new too, I have just got the Celestron C8N, which is 8"/200.   Have to say I was pretty amazed how good Jupiter was on Saturday when i looked through this scope at it for the first time, certainly not a brown dot. I had previously looked at it through a 130eq and couldn't make out the bands, this may have been to to it not being good seeing (I have no idea what is or isn't at the moment, not much to compare), it may have been windy or possibly not collimated (Not sure about this either!!). The bands were instantly visible and clear. Didn't see the GRS either, hopefully following the link from the GRS thread with times I can have a better go next time!

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All new for me too. Went for the 250px, just now only have the stock eye pieces. Using the 10mm towards the end of last month. Managed to loose a couple of hours tracking Jupiter. Got to see two moon shadows and the GRS cross the disc, and all from the back garden. Brilliant.

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I recently brought my skywatcher Evostar 120 and I know allot of people seem to think the standard eyepieces are okay, but my 10mm was absolute junk and changed it immediately for an 8mm BST Starguider eyepiece. The difference and clarity of Jupiter was totally mind blowing, I highly recommend that you change your eyepieces to the BST range as a starting point. These eyepieces will compliment your scope beautifully, if you get a variable polar filter, this also helps to take the shimmer off Jupiter and pull out more clarity of the rings.

Good luck and clear skies.

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