Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.

sgl_imaging_challenge_banner_beauty_night_skies.thumb.jpg.2711ade15e31d01524e7dc52d15c4217.jpg

RiponJas

Can you recommend a guidescope cam to start me off

Recommended Posts

Hi all. 

Attempting my first foray into AP and wanted some opinions on a guiding cam to get me started.. 

It'll be popped into an Opticstar ar80s dual mounted next to the 90mm in which will have my dslr (eos 450d) attached. 

Spent too much lately so looking for an affordable item that won't fail me. 

I'm sure you knowledgeable lot will point me right. 

Cheers in advance.. 

Jas ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Despite what Bryan said, my QHY5l-ii and 50mm finder guider (with the adapter from modern astronomy) has never failed me, that was recommended to me when starting out..

Mike

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Glad you're is working well Mike. I've had nothing but trouble with mine since I got it (QHY5LIIc). Ask 100 people their opinions on something and you'll most likely get 100 answers! ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry to hear that Bryan.  The only thing I would say is that i rigorously install the driver on any pc before connecting the camera (same one as yours), and i never had an issue in any app like PHD, Sharpcap or APT.  the EZ Planetary prog that came with it is good but a bit flakey.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Although good to be looking into guidescope options in my personal experience (which is not extensive) I would first try a few sessions without the guidescope.

It is not an absolute requirement so long as you have tracking on your mount, especially if you keep the exposures relatively short.   Okay you might not get all the detail due to shorter exposures but you at least get a few sessions under your belt and some data to then get to grips with the stacking, aligning and enhancing software. 

People with far more experience may shoot me down in flames but it is just another thing that can go wrong due to inexperience and add to the frustration and whilst eventually will help no end it may be something to add at a later date.  I have only had a few decent sessions in the previous Winter of all night imaging and as a newbie there is so much to get right that honestly you can do without the added problems this will add (or maybe just me who cannot cope with all the software required ? ).

Steve

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fully understand your point Steve, I am in fact trying to get some sessions in without. I'm just looking into future options at the moment.. 

Can't afford it for a wee while but no harm in researching for the time being. ? 

Jas

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, teoria_del_big_bang said:

Just need the clouds to go then eh ? 

 

Ill say. At least it's stopped raining. ? 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56 minutes ago, mikeyj1 said:

Sorry to hear that Bryan.  The only thing I would say is that i rigorously install the driver on any pc before connecting the camera (same one as yours), and i never had an issue in any app like PHD, Sharpcap or APT.  the EZ Planetary prog that came with it is good but a bit flakey.

I might uninstall all my QHY drivers and then do an update with the latest software. I don't like the way QHY drivers are just labeled "latest driver" rather than a version number so you can check which one you've got.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, teoria_del_big_bang said:

Although good to be looking into guidescope options in my personal experience (which is not extensive) I would first try a few sessions without the guidescope.

It is not an absolute requirement so long as you have tracking on your mount, especially if you keep the exposures relatively short.   Okay you might not get all the detail due to shorter exposures but you at least get a few sessions under your belt and some data to then get to grips with the stacking, aligning and enhancing software. 

People with far more experience may shoot me down in flames but it is just another thing that can go wrong due to inexperience and add to the frustration and whilst eventually will help no end it may be something to add at a later date.  I have only had a few decent sessions in the previous Winter of all night imaging and as a newbie there is so much to get right that honestly you can do without the added problems this will add (or maybe just me who cannot cope with all the software required ? ).

Steve

Sorry but I don't agree with this. Autoguiding is the life blood of astrophotography and makes the impossible possible. The sooner you get into autoguiding the sooner you can get into the real business of capture. 

Olly

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Only two situations where you don't need autoguiding, a shortish apo / camera lens on eg a Star Adventurer with short subs, or a seriously premium mount that guides with encoders and model.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

+1 for the view that although guiding is essential in the long term, as a beginner it is good to get familiar with everything else first so that when you do eventually start guiding you know that everything else is sorted. 

Ady 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,

I want to tread a bit carefully here, but to add my voice to the many, I would respectfully express my agreement with Steve and Andy. 

While autoguiding is indeed a near must-have long term, for a beginner or someone new it is really daunting. (And I'm not being in any way condescending, I've been having frustration with AG for the last year and a half.) It's a learning curve that a beginner need not concern themselves with until they've really got to grips with the rest of AP.

To answer the original question, though, I would recommend an ASI120. I happen to be a heretic, as I own a colour one. Never had any issues with it for anything, but if you were to go onto planetary later the mono's probably better suited.

John

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's refreshing to get both sides of a debate regarding this. It would appear that it really is a case of personal opinion, because if it was essential everybody would say the same and vice versa. 

While I am indeed going to be starting relying on the mounts (HEQ5) tracking abilities I will most definitely upgrade to a dedicated guiding setup down the line. Which will naturally require a guiding camera. 

All comments are taken on board and appreciated as long as they remain constructive. 

Cheers sgl members ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can see both sides here, as always with this hobby.  I can certainly see and understand the thought chain behind learning other basics first.  However, if you are venturing in to imaging, at some point, you will probably need to auto-guide and, if you look in to it early, you will see it actually isn't as bad as you think and very quickly becomes just another integral part of your imaging process once you have the settings ironed out if using PHD2.

A lot of great imaging time can be lost by not learning such an important part of this element of AP at an early stage so I would tent to agree with @ollypenrice and say try to adopt it as early as possible as it is such an important part of imaging.

Agree with above, ASI120mm first or Altair GP Cam.  SX Lodestar is the next step up due to increased sensitivity but not essential by any means given the additional cost.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I started imaging I was just using my Canon 550D on the Meg 90 with no guiding. It was a bit of a pain, not helped by wandering PA. I got a ST80 and QHY5-II on a dual bar and my imaging immediatly improved. It was almost as big a jump as going to cooled mono CCD.

Do it. Bite the bullet and start guiding.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to show you how easy it can be, if you have a look at one of my videos on SG Pro auto-focusing here, at 2:10 you will see how quick it is to start the auto-guider off and running, and at 6:06 you will see the results that quick action gave.  Hopefully you will see then it isn't actually that bad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The trouble for me has been the troubleshooting, although I've almost had AP ruined with a silly mechanical issue for the last 6 months. Found out what it was on Friday night--the EQ5 non goto has a brass clutch bolt that screws onto the worm gear shaft. If this undoes, the RA motor gradually loses traction and the RA axis stops moving. The result as a very believable but nasty looking PHD graph and a failure in tracking. Fortunately, it appears that if its tightened well enough the clutch wont undo.

For some reason the issue never occurs when tracking without guiding--I think its the quite rapid back and forth movements that work it loose. 

John

Edited by JohnSadlerAstro

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, JohnSadlerAstro said:

The trouble for me has been the troubleshooting, although I've almost had AP ruined with a silly mechanical issue for the last 6 months. Found out what it was on Friday night--the EQ5 non goto has a brass clutch bolt that screws onto the worm gear shaft. If this undoes, the RA motor gradually loses traction and the RA axis stops moving. The result as a very believable but nasty looking PHD graph and a failure in tracking. Fortunately, it appears that if its tightened well enough the clutch wont undo.

For some reason the issue never occurs when tracking without guiding--I think its the quite rapid back and forth movements that work it loose. 

John

I can see your frustration, John, but the auto-guiding has just flagged up an issue that was actually there, so in a way has helped.  Ultimately the problem is with the mount, not the auto-guider.

It can be frustrating at the start, but usually only if something else, as in your case, makes it go wrong.  Once it is running it is usually very good indeed with most complaints being the result of external influences such as faulty or loose cables, or differential flexure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 27/08/2018 at 10:29, RayD said:

A lot of great imaging time can be lost by not learning such an important part of this element of AP at an early stage so I would tent to agree with @ollypenrice and say try to adopt it as early as possible as it is such an important part of imaging. 

As I mentioned its not about not learning this early on.. I have said I will be following this route, but as many others on here will know money does come into the equation. New bathroom or guide cam and gubbins. Which do you think my wife will vote for? 

I'll not be posting anything else in this thread now as it's gone seriously off topic from the original question. All advice has been taken on board and I will still be following the route I explained.

Many thanks to those who have posted. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.