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By GiL Young
Hello, all ~
If you'd please take a moment to read the info in my profile, I'd be grateful beyond words. In short,, I leaped into this new passion before fully researching all of it's necessary aspects. I'm determined to verify with my own eyes the deep cosmos and better understand the far past & distant future events. Thanks so much for indulging this newbie.
~ GiL Young
Hi to everyone,
I'm new in the world of the telescope and as my first telescope I bought an used Skywatcher 70/700 with supatrak mount and I hope that someone can help to understand the equipment I'll need to connect (cable, bluetooth or wi-fi add) my telescope mount to a Mac and control it by software like EQMac or Stellarium.
I am looking for help and advice on my SynScan EQ5 pro problem which i am struggling with. Everything was working fine and as expected. I have never updated the firmware and thought while i had everything connected i would update the Hand Controller and the skywatcher WiFi dongle.
Everything updated first time without issue and i was pleased to be up to date. However i loaded SynScan app on the pc which connected fine through the handset and USB/Serial adaptor cable. I clicked on the movement arrows and nothing happened, i then went in to a random 1 star alignment and again no response from the motors.
I powered off again and instead of the PC i tried the hand controller, i tried a 1 star alignment and the hand controller was displaying the slewing but again no response from the motors. in panic i then did the same with the WiFi dongle and phone app, same thing the software is showing movement but the scope remains still.
Knowing all was well prior to firmware updates i reverted back to the previous firmware version and no difference, i tried it again in Lo mode and still nothing. I then noticed a firmware update for the Motor Control so thought i had nothing to loose i updated the Motor Control firmware and again no sign of life from the Motors. I have swapped the cables around, checked that they are all inserted correctly, the power is from mains not battery and the power source is plugged in to a a Power Filter and Surge protector.
I have little experience of circuit board electronics, i was struggling to find similar experiences online other than voltage issues due to batteries which is not the case. I have opened it up and no obvious loose cables of solder loose, but this was straight after the firmware update which seemed to have installed and updated very smoothly no crashes etc.
Any help would be really appreciated.
Brand new to the forum but I've been amateur stargazing for a while. For the last 10 or so years I've been using a 4.5" aperture Dobsonian and it's been great but I think it's time for a large upgrade. There are so many options out there I wasn't sure where to start as I'm mostly just familiar with my own telescope and how it works. I'm looking for a step up and don't know whether I should stick with a Dobsonian and just get a larger aperture or try something else like a reflector (and if so, where to start). I love looking at planets and deep sky objects. I don't mind the size as long as it is generally portable. Preferably under 800USD but flexible.
Thanks so much for the advice!
as a follow up of the discussion on 12mm planetary eyepieces: [settled] 12 mm planetary eyepiece ortho or zoom I though I share with you my experience with my newly acquired EPs which arrived last Monday from Aunty FLO 😉. Just before placing an order, I had a change of mind and went for the 10 mm BCO instead the Q-turret barlow. So here is the list of EPs in this comparison:
Hyperflex 7E1 Zoom: 7.2 - 21.5 mm (which has already a very good reputation as we all know) Baader Classic Ortho 18 mm Baader Classic Ortho 10 mm Seben Super Plössl Zoom: 8 - 24 mm (same as Skywatcher, Starguider, Zhumell, Agena, ....)
So here are the contenders. I am well aware that all those have been reviewed and compared, but I though I share my experience with them in the hope that somebody finds it useful.
The comparison was done with my 180 SkyMax Mak-Cass, set up with the original VB, an Omegon ADC, a TS-1.25" star diagonal and then the EPs. In this configuration, which works really well to correct for atmospheric dispersion, my scope has an effective focal length of 2940 mm. I had the chance to use the EPs two nights in a row, one with ok seeing and yesterday with good seeing conditions. After cooling the scope for about an hour (where I try to place the scope outside for cooling when the outside air temperature is the same as the storing temperature of the Mak, about 24 deg C) I went to work comparing the EPs. Each comparison was done for about an hour, where I switched EPs back an forth, using the orthos as baseline for quality.
Comparison on Saturn at 10mm, so the BCO 10, the Hyperflex at 10 and the Seben at 10 were compared. That's at 294x magnification:
The BCO 10 is really sharp (as expected) and to me surprisingly comfortable to use. I was initially sceptical about the 8 mm eye relief, however for me it works and thus gives superb views. 52 deg FOV is also very comfortable. The Cassini Division was clear and easily discernible. The Hyperflex, even though with a smaller FOV, was very close to the performance of the BCO 10. Also expected, I read a lot of good reviews on the Hyperflex. Again Cassini Division nice and clear. The Seben zoom also performed, however noticeably less good than the Hyperflex or even the BCO 10. Basically I missed some sharpness, obviously in comparison with the BCO, but also with the Hyperflex. For my eye it was harder to make out the Cassini Division through the Seben. Comparison on Jupiter at 18 mm: BCO 18, Hyperflex and Seben at 18. That's at 163x magnification. Here a picture of how Jupiter should have looked like to describe what I managed to see:
Again the BCO 18 gave superb views, sharp with lot's of contrast (as expected for an ortho). Quite some structure visible in the cloud bands.The two main bands where easy to see, no problem there. I was able to see the short dark band below the lower main band, as well as the eddy structure to the right of it (referring to the picture above). I have to say I was impressed. The Hyperflex zoom was quite up there with the BCO, maybe a bit less contrast, but I still could make out the short dark band. With the Seben zoom I had a hard time discerning the short dark band as well as the eddy structure to the side of it. Would I not have known where to look, I would have missed that. So noticeably less contrast in the Seben. Summary comments:
Using the BCOs as baseline, they both produce very sharp and contrast rich views. The 52 deg FOV is very comfortable to view planets. As said I was surprised how comfortable the BCO 10 is to use even though with its short eye relief (8 mm). Obviously not useful to people who have to wear glasses. The Hyperflex zoom is quite close to the BCOs, even though with a narrower FOV. Sharpness and contrast are comparable. Probably one would not switch too often to the BCOs and happily observe with the Hyperflex. The Seben zoom is a good EP, but not there with the Hyperflex or the BCOs. To my eyes its a workable zoom, but you miss out on details of the planets with respect to sharpness and contrast. I can recommend going for a Hyperflex (as so many have said before) if your are looking for a zoom EP. These three EPs, BCO 10, 18 and the Hyerflex are a very functional base set for a 180 Skymax. BCO 10 very sharp on Saturn (looking forward to see Mars with that). BCO 18 produces contrast rich views of Jupiter. And the Hyperflex for everything between 136x - 408x 😉. Maybe another fixed focal length EP in the 14-15 mm range, just to bridge the gap between the BCO 10 and 18. However the Hyperflex does a great job at that already. A yes, and I really can only recommend an ADC. Without it the cloud band details on Jupiter disappeared even in the BCO 18 and the typical blue/red colour seams were clearly visible. Clear skies,