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Beginner's camera buying advice


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Hi all,

I'd like some advice on buying a camera as a beginner, in order to do lunar/planetary imaging, and perhaps more. 

I have a SkyWatcher Explorer 130p on an EQ2 mount and I've practiced with eyepiece projection using a standard 2MP webcam as well as an SLR camera, but was looking into investing in a more suitable and practical camera.

My question is, should I invest in a camera that may be overkill for this size of telescope, but could be a good investment for the future, looking along the lines of a ZWO ASI120MC? Or would I be better off getting something cheaper for now, such as an Orion StarShoot Solar System? Or thirdly, just sticking with the SLR and simply get a  shutter cable release?

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I've just got the ASI120mm model for lunar imaging. Damian Peach amongst others really rates it. Build quality seems good and it installed fine on a Win7 laptop with Firecaptures latest beta version. Yet to try it out on my scope though. The QHY5LII is more or less the same camera as far as I can tell. Both could be used for guiding too if you needed that in future. The colour version you are considering will not give quite such good results, but saves messing about with filters. It won't perform quite as well as a guider either, but many use it and have achieved good results.

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I have the 120MC and I've only managed to get one decent result due to clouds, seeing, clouds, software probs, clouds . . . But I'm reasonably happy with it even though there was a bright Moon and the seeing was pants. I'm sure it'll be a lot better with good seeing and a dark sky.



Edited by Astrosurf
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Thanks to all for the replies! I'm leaning towards the ASI monochrome as a future investment. I have no use for the usb3 version as my laptop won't support it. Another question is, will I have any back focus problems with this webcam? I have read that others have had problems with this type of scope.

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