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Next Scope


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What are you hoping / planning to do with it?

Visual? If so do you want to hunt down faint fuzzies or study the moon / planets?

Imaging? Again DSO? Or lunar / planetary?

All will have very different requirements, getting the wrong 'scope / mount could be an expensive frustration.

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recceranger - I'd love to buy that scope but its a little out of my price range! The cheapest I could find was £1300

 DaveS - I'm hoping to use the new scope for a bit of everything really. Planetary viewing and imaging is my main objective but I'd also like to view some DSO's.  I've only every really looked at Newtonian reflectors so I know nothing about refractors. As far I understand refractors are a lot more expensive hence me not looking at them at all! 

I've heard a lot of good things about the Skywatcher Explorer 200p but i'd like to know peoples opinions on here and any recommendation would be greatly appreciated

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First off, no one scope will do everything, however:

Since you mention imaging I'll say first, get a copy of Making Every Photon Count by Steve Richards (Our own steppenwolf) from FLO, and see how far you want to go. Second get the heaviest mount you can afford, I would say HEQ5 *minimum*

Generally, to get started with imaging you'd be looking at a short FL ED refractor, one of the ubiquitous 80mm ED semi-apo jobbies on a HEQ5 Syntrek mount

This mount will also do for lunar / planetary imaging and observing, for both of which something like a Mak 127 might be a good start. The mount will also keep your target centered in the eyepiece / webcam depending on what you're doing. Don't be put off by people telling you equatorial mounts are difficult to understand, they're not in reality.

DSO observing (Unlike imaging) will need a real light bucket, the usual beginers choice being the (Equally ubiquitous) 200mm Newt on a Dobsonian base,as it gives the most apperture for the money though you'll have to push / nudge (Same thing really) it around two axes instead of one. They're no good for DSO (And IMHO planetary) imaging.

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