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Hey guys. Thought about starting this thread. I feel like we all should inform eachother and newer members alike about the magngifications that can be achieved on planets,that provide the best sharpness/size ratio,depending on the scope and seeing. After this thread has grown a bit, i feel like this should be pinned,as to provide a little guide to newer members that are not experienced with planetary observing,as many will be fooled with the typical 50x per inch of aperture and get disappointed when they find that that image will be dim and blurry.
For my 8” F/6 Sky-Watcher Dob
For Saturn i like to use 150x in medium seeing and if i want something a bit bigger , switch to 240x ,which will give me a bigger,but blurrier image.iBut In good seeing, i found that 240x was very usable.When we have perfect conditions, i m certainly trying 300x.
Mars, isnt very big in the sky right now,so even at high magnifications like 300x it still appears as a small orange dot. For observing mars,I suggest waiting for it to reach opposition.It benifits hugely from it! However,this happens once every 2 years....But 5ere are other planets to keep you occupied until then, such as jupiter,saturn and Venus.
For Venus, i use 50-100-120 depending on its phase.
For Jupiter, i like to use 150x, as it provides a very sharp image,with key features of the planet such as bands being very detailed.Waiting on my 6mm UWA Skywatcher to bring it to 200 and see how that plays out. Be careful! Don’t magnify jupiter too much, as it will loose much of its features and sharpness.
Neptune and Uranus: These two will not impress, but are certainly have a nice colour to them. Even ar high magnifications, such as 300x and 400x, they will look like small discs with color in them.Uranus will look be colored green and Neptune a fainter blue.
Mercury About mercury...Havent gotten the chance to observe it ,so the guys will have to inform you about that?
Feel free to give your own opinions as to give members a wider source of information to help them observe better !
Cheers and clear skies.
By Cosmic Geoff
At around 14.35 GMT today I observed Venus, Mercury and Jupiter, with my 127mm Mak SLT GoTo.
Venus was a large, very thin crescent, trembly in poor seeing. Mercury was easy to see once I got my eye in, and Jupiter was easier to pick out with a red filter.
Mercury and Jupiter are now not far apart. (7min RA 3 deg Dec.)
The visibility of Mercury seems dependent on atmospheric clarity. On several days recently I looked for it but could not see it.
By Cosmic Geoff
Aided by GoTo, I observed Venus in daylight this afternoon. It is only a few days from inferior conjunction (26th) and appears as a large thin crescent. It's in an unfavorable position for Northern nocturnal observers and appeared almost below the Sun. I could not see Mercury (which should have been accessible).
And before you comment, I checked carefully where the 127mm Mak was pointing before putting my eye to the eyepiece.?
As it was a nice sunny day I tried a little WL solar viewing, but as it was just like looking like a ginormous white snooker ball, I decided to switch to Venus (with the help of my trusty goto mount). After looking at it visually with my C8 SCT, I decided to have a go at imaging it. The below image is the best result I got out of 3,000 images with my ZWO ASI120 mc, with a light blue filter fitted (not that you'd notice with the colour of Venus). Seeing was pants, but the image came out much better than expected. Used Registax, then PS to crop & alter curves a little. Flipped image for correct orientation.