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Hi Folks,

I may be able to upgrade my scope at christmas from my little 90mm mak to something much nicer and I am considering a goto.

The ones that I am interested in and can fit the budget are either a Sky-Watcher Skymax-127 SynScan AZ GoTo or Celestron NexStar 127 SLT.

They are both maks which are my favourite when I compare them to others such as newts as I love the contrast and the long focal length for planets, moon etc.

Looking at the specs they seem very similar and the prices are roughly the same as well, so my questions are:-

1.. Is there much difference between the 2 and if so which is better and why?

2.. Can the telescope be manually moved by hand after alignment to quickly view something else and return back to where it was previously. (The Orion starseeker IV does this but its a bit more expensive)

3.. How is it for photos. I know it will never be as good as an eq mount due to field rotation but could I do say 100 x 10 second exposures with it and use DSS to take care of any field rotation.(I am thinking bright DSO's)

I hope somebody can help or maybe just order some advice on either as I need to get my order in to father christmas in time:happy7:

Thanks in advance

 

 

 

 

 

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The SW127 and Celestron 127 Maks are essentially the same telescope, they are both made by Synta who own both brand names. The only difference is the mount. Neither mount can be manually slewed, unlike the Orion Starseeker IV which uses the Skywatcher StarDiscovery mount (the Orion 127 Mak is the same as the SW and Celestron branded models). 

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So after doing some more research the Celestron always comes up more expensive. Would you say the mount is a slightly better mount considering that the scopes are the same or is it just the extras that it comes with the celestron such as software etc.

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Optically both scopes are equal and Celestron, being a well known brand name, costs more because of the name. SW are excellent even when compared to Questar, which is the world's finest. 

Mechanically I doubt there will be any difference in mount performance. However, as you mentioned observing the moon and planets, would you not be better off with a good EQ, as go-to isn't really necessary for finding such objects? 

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cheers for your reply. I have an eq mount in the form of a star adventurer which I use for my camera mainly which produces some brilliant results. I do like the idea of a goto just because of the ease of use especially when we go camping. I can use this to make life easy to show the kids etc and use my star adventurer for my photography. Also a bigger mak is a bonus.

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I was so impressed with the Skymax 127, that I bought a second one for my holiday home in France. If you want portability:-

5a1af8ed500c5_SkymaxBackpack-Annotated(R).thumb.jpg.831da1ef1dda2e34b731b9bb6fd91049.jpg

For portable use, I have a pair of rechargeable 5-cell, 6V, 2600mAh NiMH battery packs, borrowed from my radio-controlled model sailing yachts, with a "Y" lead to connect them in series, and output through a 5.5mm OD, 2.1mm ID, power jack. This gives me about 10 hours observing. These sit neatly in the little battery-holder satchel that comes with the mount.

Geoff

Edited by Geoff Lister
Aded battery info
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That looks nice and easy and very portable. Thanks for taking the time to show the measurements.

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Has anybody any info about taking pics with this setup eg both through the scope using prime focus or just using the mount and a dslr with a lens(200mm) for example, what length of exposure would be possible.

Cheers

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Orion nebula, Skymax 127, T-mount, Nikon D3200, 8-second exposure.

Resulting photo resized dividing by 4. Not a superb photo, but I am still learning.

5a1c413da6ee3_Orion1-R.thumb.jpg.a0aceeb3ca815669386d2812608b19e9.jpg

Geoff

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Thats really good for 8 second, even some colour showing there. Is that your camera connected to your telescope through the T adapter, if so then thats amazing at that focal length. Thanks for sharing

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On ‎27‎/‎11‎/‎2017 at 18:07, adder001 said:

Is that your camera connected to your telescope through the T adapter, if so then thats amazing at that focal length.

Yes

Geoff

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On 11/25/2017 at 20:05, adder001 said:

Hi Folks,

I may be able to upgrade my scope at christmas from my little 90mm mak to something much nicer and I am considering a goto.

The ones that I am interested in and can fit the budget are either a Sky-Watcher Skymax-127 SynScan AZ GoTo or Celestron NexStar 127 SLT.

They are both maks which are my favourite when I compare them to others such as newts as I love the contrast and the long focal length for planets, moon etc.

Looking at the specs they seem very similar and the prices are roughly the same as well, so my questions are:-

1.. Is there much difference between the 2 and if so which is better and why?

2.. Can the telescope be manually moved by hand after alignment to quickly view something else and return back to where it was previously. (The Orion starseeker IV does this but its a bit more expensive)

3.. How is it for photos. I know it will never be as good as an eq mount due to field rotation but could I do say 100 x 10 second exposures with it and use DSS to take care of any field rotation.(I am thinking bright DSO's)

I hope somebody can help or maybe just order some advice on either as I need to get my order in to father christmas in time:happy7:

Thanks in advance

 

 

 

 

 

One thing to remember is that the Synscan HC is far better and more user friendly than the trial and error with Nexstar HC, alignment in particular !!

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I find the Synscan handset, and its software, easy to use. You just have to set the date; and each time you cycle the power you have to input the correct time, as it always restarts at 8:00 pm. If you do your alignment carefully, the mount will track an object for hours, very accurately.

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I think my decision is made - The skywatcher it is. Already thinking about powertanks and rs232 cables to control it from stellarium. (Theres always something to spend my money on :happy7:).

Thanks everyone for your input

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I am now the proud owner of a Skywatcher 127 mak with a synscan Az mount and I love it. I have only used it once (last night) and what a massive difference when looking at the moon compared to my 90mm mak. The difference is unbelievable, the brightness is actually dazzling(definitely need my moon filter now) and the detail is much improved. I didnt spend a great deal of time getting it super leve(I just wanted to start looking through it)l, I just used the bubble level that is built into the tripod leg and it seemed to track ok, but not perfectly - I think it needs perfect levelling from what I have read.

But even with that quick setup I told it to slew to Andromeda and Orion nebula as they are relatively easy to spot in a telescope and it found them quite easily and yes a major difference again, Orion especially I could easily make out the shapes and contrast.

I have already made my solar filter using baadar solar film which I also got as a christmas pressy although not used it yet.

I am going to mount my camera to an L bracket and attach it directly to the mount and see what I can get. I bet 10 seconds would be achieveable at about 200mm looking at the above pic of M42 and that was through the scope.

So all in all very very pleased

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I have found that 10-second exposures with my DSLR are fine. It may also be worth fitting the T adaptor and mounting the EOS on the back of the 127's OTA (just slide the dovetail plate a little further forwards to compensate for the extra weight).

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