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Hi,

I've just ordered a Sky-Watcher Skymax 150 PRO from FLO. It will replace my wonderful 250px which is simply taking up too much room amongst my kids' growing population of Peppa Pig and friends!

Will I miss the wider field of view and the light gathering capabilities of the big(ish) dob in my little backyard in averagely light polluted Bedford?  I've read good things about the MAK but I'm nervous!

Part of my motivation was that I want to be able to share the joy of the night skies with my young kids (6 & 3). The dob is fabulous but it's not that easy for them to see through the eyepiece without knocking it off target. I have an HEQ5  Pro mount (which I've never used). I'm hoping that, along with the MAK, the kids might have a better chance of seeing things and being inspired rather than frustrated.

I'll almost certainly sell the 250px asap and free-up the space for 'Peppa Pig land'.

I hope I'm not making a grave (and expensive) mistake!

Best wishes,

Jason

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What not chat to FLO about the fact it might not have been the right option for you.

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Posted (edited)

I felt about as nervous as you when I took the plunge and bought my Mak 150. That feeling was quickly quashed the minute I aimed it at the moon/planets, yes it has a more narrow FOV but, wider eyepieces work great to alleviate that. Oh yeah, it does a good job on brighter DSO’s also, M42 was beautiful recently and revealed E&F stars which was a treat. As mentioned above, one look at the moon and planets once that scope has reached temperature and you won’t turn back.

Besides that, with the most inexpensive camera you can imagine (Neximage 5) I have managed great planetary images, the 150 Mak is a little gem, you couldn’t pry it from my cold dead hands. 

Edited by Sunshine
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I don't think you need to worry! A 150mm scope is a very powerful tool and could serve you well for a lifetime. Maksutov's have a well deserved reputation for producing sharp high definition views, so what you feel you may lose in light grasp and resolution,  may be compensated for with finer definition and contrast.

 

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Thanks for the reassurance! I'm feeling very excited now! 

I've been trying to get my head around calibration and alignment of the HEQ6 pro mount now. It's a new learning curve for me so I've been scratching my head and scouring this forum and youtube which have been a wealth of information as always! 

I'll report back once I've had my 'first light' moment!

Best wishes,

Jason 

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I had the same dilema as you , Jason ...i went through 3 scopes before i settled on a 180 mak ... ive not had the best chance to use it yet , and its certainly a different proposition from my 250 dob and my lovely little WO Z73 ( which i hate myself for parting with). But , i , like you , think the Mak is the way to go .. it was when i looked at the Plaides that i knew i had done the right thing .. especially with Mars close by . Im looking forward to seeing the planets and the moon in more detail . Now all we need is some lovely clear nights . Good luck , mate .

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1 hour ago, Stu1smartcookie said:

it was when i looked at the Plaides that i knew i had done the right thing

That's interesting. I would have thought the Pleiades would have been one of the less suitable targets for a Mak with narrow field of view? I prefer it framed by some dark sky to put it in context.

That aside, Maks are great scopes. If you get on top of the dew and cooling the contrast is excellent.

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Yes , you are right,of course, but i was actually surprised that i had at least some of the cluster in view . For me , nothing will come close to the wide angle WO Z73 , but i took the plunge with my mak 180 and i don't regret it . I was a bit worried when people told me the cooling times on a mak , but i found it to be reasonable . Also , i do find that focusing is a bit tricky sometimes  .. there is a really small sweet spot.. i guess  that is normal for these scopes . Or am i doing something wrong ?

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Cooling time seems to negatively affect the high power views rather than lower power observing. My 12 inch dob provides good views at 50-70x straight out of the house. For 200x-300x 30-40 minutes cool down make a big difference to the image quality.

 

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