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AlistairW

The best thing i ever did ....

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For me it's simple

1. Joining this forum

2. Building my own Obsy.

Both really improved my knowledge and enthusiasm

1. To be able to access so much information and years of experience instantly is fantastic on the forum as well as sharing the failures helps :)

2. Building my own Obsy has encouraged me to go out on the nights when the forecast isn't great but, roll the roof back - PC turned on and your ready to go has meant many more hours learning and hopefully improving abilities/images.

The almost instant up and running alongside quick pack up and go to bed means I have spent more time looking up in the last 6 months than in the last 5 years.

Love it

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I see loads of posts stating the best thing i ever did with my imageing setup is ..... For example

> Upgrade Mount

> Get DSLR modded

> Started Autoguiding

> Switched to CCD

So what sort of things "really" do make the biggest difference to imageing quality ?

Alistair

The best thing you can ever do is the one that improves your imaging but doesn't cost money. In my eyes the degree of " bestness " exponentially decreases as the cost of the item goes up.

I have also read the posts stating that the " best thing " some one ever did was to spend £5000.00 on a mount or £4000.00 on an all singing and dancing CCD camera and these do not really impress me. The best thing that you can probably have is a piece of sound advice and these are usually free if a bit hard to come by.

Regards,

A.G

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Best thing I ever did was to manage my own expectations on what I could do with the kit I could afford.

Yes, my images do not come close some of the things I've seen in the imaging section, but as I've not spent £10,000+ on my kit and don't live in a dark sky site, I just appreciated them for what they were. DSLR + 6" SCT on an AltAz mount... so I'm never going t

I started a thread on Imaging "the no EQ DSO challenge" to see what other people could do and to pick up some hints and tips and although I am saving the pennies to eventually get an EQ mount, I have been very impressed with the results you can get in a bad location, with entry level kit.

Learn to use the kit you have, keep a note of settings, set-up, etc so you can replicate and refine as you get more experience and only upgrade once you truly have maxed out the potential for the camera, mount, scope, etc as starting over with a new piece of kit will bring it's own issues or learning curve and rarely an instant increase in the results.

Of course, if I win the lottery I'll be blowing millions of pounds on a state of the art observatory in the back garden of my new country house in a dark sky site! :grin:

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No big steps up for me just lots and lots of little ones as I find that every time I go out I learn something new.  And what an enormous learning curve it is.  I am also a perpetual novice.

Edited by CSM

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Has to be autoguiding but I haven't taken anything yet. Nailed it last night and the buzz that you'll get when you first link everything up, programme, camera focussed, everything calibrated and then you see the graph on PHD, it's like WOW!!!!! And to think of all of the work that professional astronomers had to do, only a few years ago, to achieve an image many can now produce.

P.

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Has to be autoguiding but I haven't taken anything yet. Nailed it last night and the buzz that you'll get when you first link everything up, programme, camera focussed, everything calibrated and then you see the graph on PHD, it's like WOW!!!!! And to think of all of the work that professional astronomers had to do, only a few years ago, to achieve an image many can now produce.

P.

i still do a little fist-bump every time I get through the calibration and the word 'guiding' appears !

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