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i am looking to buy a new telescope and would like to know will i see a great deal of difference between a 7inch mak ie a skywatcher 180pro and either a meade or celestron 10inch sct i am assuming that should i wish to venture into astro photography in the future the larger scopes would be better than the smaller or am i wrong? thoughts and input appreciated.

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I went up from a 5 inch to an 8 inch scope (5 inch Dob and 8 inch SCT). The difference was huge as to how i saw the universe.

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 I had a 10" sct. My favourite scope of all. On forks, with or without goto it was a huge leap..

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If you want to do planetary and Moon imaging then it's doable on an alt/az mount and longer focal lengths are better. But for deep sky objects (DSOs) you need a fast scope at about F5. Plus it depends what DSOs you want to image. For nebulae, which can be very large (usually taken with a modded DSLR or dedicated AP camera) a small frac such as the SW ED 80 is a good start. I use my 200P (F5) for smaller DSOs such as galaxies. But for these you really need to do autoguiding to get the long exposures necessary and with accurate tracking, so a good equatorial mount, like the HEQ5 Pro, is what you will need. It's an expensive game!

Or just stick a camera with a wide-angle lens on a tripod and shoot away! It really depends on what you want to achieve.

To go the imaging route I would read this: http://www.firstlightoptics.com/books/making-every-photon-count-steve-richards.html    It's the imagers' bible. Don't buy until you've read it!

Others will give you more advice. I'm pooped so not being very clear!  :grin:

Alexxx

Edited by Astrosurf
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Alas buying a scope is like buying a car, do I get a people mover, sports coupe, sedan or 4x4? Do I go cheap or luxury?

Do I get all the bells and whistles?

There are more bits and pieces designed for different parts of the hobby than there are types of flying insect.

I suggest trying out one or two at a local star club or something before you go off and spend money on what may become the Ancient Mariner's rotting carcase round your neck.

General rule is you can't photo using an alt az and you can't buy cheap gear and expect amazing pics.

Both rules are easily broken by luck but not by judgement.

Best wishes

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