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Upgrade time is coming soon... advise required

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The imaging bug has bitten and it's not going away...

The piggy bank is (very) slowly filling up, with the intention of upgrading my Nexstar AltAz for Celestron AVX EQ mount.

To speed up the purchase, I was thinking of selling the Nexstar and keeping the 6" SCT OTA, as I have a f6.3 focal reducer, dew shield, focus mask & SCT to T-Adaptor fitting and "Bob's Knobs" for collimating.

A local dealer has recently offered me £200 trade-in for the mount if I purchased the AVX from them, but highlighted that If I traded in the entire set-up I'd obviously get considerably more and could therefore buy a new AVX with an 8" SCT as the outstanding amount would not be too much more. Plus, most of the accessories would therefore fit the new 8" too. (I'll just get a new set of "Bob's knobs" if required).

Since the dealer has mentioned this, (damn him!!! :huh: ) I've started looking at other options like a wide field scope. The 6SE is a great all rounder, so I've done a lot of planetary / lunar and even sampled a bit of white light solar imaging with it, but I'm now craving deeper skies and longer exposures that the mount definitely can't deliver, but I'm not sure if I'm fine to stick with the 6" OTA, or if I'll soon be needing more aperture or a refractor for DSO imaging. If I need to change the OTA and the mount, it seems like a good opportunity to kill 2 birds with one stone.

Given these options, I'm looking for advise and pro's & con's to help with my decision.

Option 1

Sell the Nexstar mount only, keep the 6" OTA - trade up to AVX.

Pro - Finally get an EQ mount (and a good one by all accounts) and it's the easiest option for my very slim budget.

Con - Can't think of a one!

Option 2

Sell the whole mount/scope - buy an AVX 8" SCT.

Pro - Better Mount & more light gathering, plus I can keep f6.3 FR and camera adaptor

Con - Need to replace Bahtinov Mask and Bob's Knobs, plus set up costs more.

Option 3

Sell the whole mount/scope - buy another EQ mount / Scope (ED 80?)

Pro - Smaller scope = easier to transport, so might get more use (the 6SE has only ever travelled once and it filled the boot).

Con - starting all over again with accessories, so costs starting to rise when this is factored in.

Any advise very gratefully received.


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As you've already said, for imaging, the mount is everything, so option 1

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Hi John, 

Sounds exciting! It's better trawling through the pros and cons of upgrading than not upgrading at all! 

I'm not too far off getting an EQ mount also however with me having a larger 9.25 I've felt no need to upgrade the OTA. 

I suppose what it really comes down to is budget and how much you're willing to spend. I'm the sort of person that would advise if you're going to put a decent amount of money (in the way of cash back from your old set up or extra money from your own savings) then you've already got the large part of the funds required and a few hundred quid top up is going to increase your satisfaction immeasurably. 

I'd work out just how much you are willing to spend and what the price difference of each option will be. If you're happy with the capabilities of your OTA then fair play, just get the new EQ mount and you'll be happy. But if there's a part of you that wants higher performance out of your set up then I'd definitely recommend saving a few hundred extra over a month or two and getting your full set up upgraded! 

Just don't end up kicking yourself thinking 'damn, I should have upgraded my OTA'' after you've been through the hassle of upgrading your mount! 


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if i was going to chose and if i could aford it id go for option 2,it ticks all the boxes for me you can allways sell you old bobs knobs ect.clear skys..charl.

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Thanks for first few bits of advice (as opposed to advise, as in my title... D'oh!!)

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