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After hours of reading up on what scopento get I thought I'd made my decision. The skywatcher 150pl but now ove seen the 200p dobsonian. Now I'm undecided can any one help with my 2 choices 

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Hello and welcome to SGL.

Both are good scopes. But the better is determined by your circumstances.

Tell us about your viewing plans.

Out of the back door into the garden? Down 3 flights of stairs? 10 miles to a dark site?
How do you feel about handling a potentially heavy and bulky assembly. They all look small on web sites!

What sort of viewing expectations do you have? Just visual? Photos? Dim fuzzy galaxy type viewing? Moon & bright planets?

The best scope is the one that gets used the most. Not the scope with the best specification.

The comments and recommendations will come flooding in when we know a little more about you.

David.

 

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I am also looking for a new scope but have ben doing AP for a couple of years now. I'm drawn towards a SW 150 PDS. It's good for visual and for AP with a DSLR.

The price £218 is very competitive for a 150 reflector that you can use for photography and has lots of good feedback on this forum.

Dobs are good for visual only and if you want to move onto AP then you will need to change the scope!

Hope this helps..

 

Ron

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Thanks for replys. I've not even seen the 150 dps only the p and pl I'll have a look at that to. 

For my viewing I'd like to be able to get good close ups of the moon and planets galaxies. I live in liverpool but the it's fairly dark at  night where I am  I'm not to concerned about size as I will store it in my garage and use it in my garden. I current have a pair of 20x80 celestron binoculars and for some reason I find Orion amazing so if like to get thr best views of that as I can with my cash. 

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Hi and welcome to SGL. I am in the same position as you and I must admit it is looking more and more like the Sky-Watcher 200P dobsonian. Good luck with your choice. Btw where about In Liverpool are you.

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Hello and welcome!

Given your location and viewing preferences I would definitely choose the 200p. Easy to handle and capable of fantastic views of the solar system as well as deep sky objects, you can't go wrong really.

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For visual use of a Newtonian scope I prefer a dobsonian mount over an equatorial mount and so would choose the Skyliner 200p. If you do want a tripod mounted scope an f5 150p on an AZ4 mount will probably work better than a 150pl.

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Am I right in thinking the 150pl has a better magnification and can see further and more detail of planets and the moon

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8 hours ago, awlfc said:

Am I right in thinking the 150pl has a better magnification and can see further and more detail of planets and the moon

Magnification can be calculated by dividing the focal length of the telescope by the focal length of the eyepiece. The maximum magnification that you can use with a telescope is determined by the aperture of the telescope. Since both the f5 and f8 150p have the same aperture they can utilise the same magnification, you will just need different eyepieces to get there.

What the f8 version will give you is a smaller secondary mirror, which means less diffraction and so slightly better (sharper) planetary performance. However, the 200p will probably have even better performance due to having a larger primary mirror.

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After a few more hours reading I think I'll go for the sky master expoler 150p and a lenses or 2

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Usually kits are poor value. You end up paying for stuff you don't really need. The one you linked I would certainly skip. I would rather buy 32mm plossl, 8-24 Celestron zoom and 2x barlow.

I think dob will give you best views for your money. Newtonian on equatorial mount is inconvenient for visual observing. Larger apperture will show more on Moon/planets/DSOs.

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I was  going  to get the Dobsonian but I want to start taking photos eventually and apparently they are no good for that 

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You can take photos of the Moon. The planets are doable with a dob as well I think.

With Newtonian on EQ mount you are buying yourself troubles for visual from the start. Focuser position changes as you rotate the scope and will eventually end up where you can't look into the eyepiece and have to rotate the tube.

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8 hours ago, awlfc said:

I was  going  to get the Dobsonian but I want to start taking photos eventually and apparently they are no good for that 

The biggest mistake is to try to do both things seriously with one scope and with a budget which is too small. You end up with a compromise which doesn't work well for either such as perhaps a 200 PDS on an EQ5. This would give you enough aperture for visual, but being on an EQ mount would be awkward and leave the eyepiece in difficult positions requiring you to rotate the scope in its rings. The mount itself would be too small to be steady enough for AP and the larger scope would likely vibrate too much in any wind, meaning unsatisfaction AP results.

In simple terms, visual astronomy is nice with a bit of aperture on a stable alt-az mount eg a dob such as the 150 or 200p, whilst AP is best started with a decent EQ mount such as an HEQ5 with a small refractor such as the 80ED.

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Would the 150p on the EQ mount be a bad choice. What about on the AZ mount that FLO sell it with. 

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If your not bothered about photography then a 200p is a great scope.simple .easy to set up.and gives excellent views.that's my opinion. I've never for 1 second had any regrets about buying mine.and have no inclination to change .well worth every penny.

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What's it like for manually tracking an object though I can imagine it to be a bit tricky without any adjustments and just pushing it. Have you ever attached a camera to it. 

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The 150p now comes with a 1.25/2-inch Crayford focuser from FLO is this a good addition 

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22 hours ago, awlfc said:

What's it like for manually tracking an object though I can imagine it to be a bit tricky without any adjustments and just pushing it. Have you ever attached a camera to it. 

A manual scope is fine for visual use, but unsuitable for any sort of photography that requires an object to be tracked. 

Pay attention to the advice @Stu has already given you. You need to choose whether you are buying a visual or photographic set up (and if you choose photographic, your budget will have to be four figures so start with the book "Making Every Photon Count").

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You can take casual snapshots through any eyepiece and through any telescope, but only of the brighter objects in the sky, and with a small point-and-shoot camera, or with that of a so-called "smartphone".  I took these, shown here within a collage, simply by holding said point-and-shoot up to the eyepiece and snapping the shots...

sampler.jpg.01155e716171f8421e570491c6cc8024.jpg 

That's just how each appeared during a live view, with my eye and eyepieces, and through this 150mm f/5 Newtonian whilst mounted onto that alt-azimuth...

166066086_6f5ra.jpg.014ce0553d9e34b14bced41a0c32f99a.jpg

Of course, the objects looked much better during the live view, with my own eye.

But if you're wanting to take pictures with a camera attached directly to the telescope, that will require a large, heavy and substantial tracking-capable mount, along with a smaller telescope; for example...

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/reflectors/skywatcher-explorer-130p-ds-ota.html

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/skywatcher-mounts/skywatcher-eq5-pro-synscan-goto.html

But if you considered that mount, this one would be better in the long run...

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/skywatcher-mounts/skywatcher-heq5-pro-synscan.html

This one, even better than that one, perhaps... https://www.firstlightoptics.com/skywatcher-mounts/sky-watcher-heq5-pro-with-rowan-belt-mod-upgrade.html

That kit would be a bit overkill for visual use, also with a smaller aperture to boot; but for astrophotography it's at a minimum.

Read about what you might accomplish with a 130mm f/5 Newtonian... https://stargazerslounge.com/topic/210593-imaging-with-the-130pds/

 

For visual use only, a Newtonian on an equatorial mount is for longer periods of observing a single object.  The mount, if simply motorised, can also cause that object to stand still there in the eyepiece, and as if time itself had stopped.  If you prefer to flit from one object to another in the space of 15 minutes or so, then choose an alt-azimuth mount.

Your eye and mind isn't really bothered if the image in the eyepiece shakes and jiggles, but a camera attached in place of your eye and eyepiece simply will not stand for it, and will result in blurred images.  A camera must be held firmly in place, like a rock, when tracking a dimmer object over a long period of time, whilst collecting the light from same, or else just one little shake or jiggle will ruin the image.

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Thanks for all the advice. Looks like I'm going to go with 150p as it seems a good all rounder for a beginner. 

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Well after an unexpected expense I had to hold of buying a scope. In the time I've had to wait I've done further reading and I've decided on the 200p Dob. 

What eye peices should I buy for good close ups of the moon

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That's a good choice. It will last a lifetime. When you need to upgrade the eyepieces there is plenty of choices. Just enjoy the fabulous views the dobsonion will give.

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