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.

Stephanos

Help with first telescope choice

Recommended Posts

Hello everyone!

I am new here and about to buy my first telescope and wondering if you could help me make up my mind!

I have been looking at the skywatcher explorer 130P on an eq2 mount and the skyliner 200P Dobsonian. There is obviously a price difference, as well as the diameters and mounts are of course different.

The skyliner supposedly has 'direct slr connection' which is a big plus, as I would like to connect my ancient Canon 1000D to the telescope I buy. Would it be that hard to connect the camera to the explorer (i.e. would it be more than a t-adapter?)

Also anyone had experience with the EQ-2 mount? Not worried about the alignment etc as I am confident I can do it with a bit of practice, it're more if it's stable enough and offers a good experience? Also does the optional motor help with taking long exposures or is it not that precise? 

I like the simplicity of the Dobsonian but as far as I know there is no option to 'motorise' it (so I'm wondering whether I will need a completely separate rig in the future if I want to take long exposures etc?)

Thank you so much, apologies if any of the questions are a bit obvious to the experienced. Any other advise (or alternatives) are most welcome

All the best,

Stephanos

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Stephanos, I am not a photographer but an observer only and from an observing point of view and ease of use the Skyliner 200P is streets ahead of the 130P, I understand the EQ2 mount is not very stable from other comments on this forum.  However, if you are only interested in astrophotography, which I sense you are, then your first purchase should be this book by Steve Richards 'Making Every Photon Count', it will show you that small refractors are more suitable for astrophotography anf other great tips.  Welcome to the forum BTW!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, rwilkey said:

Hi Stephanos, I am not a photographer but an observer only and from an observing point of view and ease of use the Skyliner 200P is streets ahead of the 130P, I understand the EQ2 mount is not very stable from other comments on this forum.  However, if you are only interested in astrophotography, which I sense you are, then your first purchase should be this book by Steve Richards 'Making Every Photon Count', it will show you that small refractors are more suitable for astrophotography anf other great tips.  Welcome to the forum BTW!

Thank you very much for your reply, much appreciated! I'll see if I can get my hands on the book. I appreciate that refractors are suitable for astrophotography but not sure if I want to sacrifice observing for pure photography, maybe a decent compromise between the two. Will look more into refractors though also.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/03/2020 at 19:12, Stephanos said:

not sure if I want to sacrifice observing for pure photography, maybe a decent compromise between the two

You will have to buy two different setups for observing and astrophotography. Neither of your choices are suitable for astrophotography, in which the most important item is the mount. A skywatcher HEQ5 plus either a 130pds (not 130p) or 80ED are the common starter choices. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps if we had an idea on budget that might help. Also is the observing location far from where you would store your telescope,. Plus do you already own camera lenses for your 1000d.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/03/2020 at 15:50, Stephanos said:

Hello everyone!

I am new here and about to buy my first telescope and wondering if you could help me make up my mind!

I have been looking at the skywatcher explorer 130P on an eq2 mount and the skyliner 200P Dobsonian. There is obviously a price difference, as well as the diameters and mounts are of course different.

The skyliner supposedly has 'direct slr connection' which is a big plus, as I would like to connect my ancient Canon 1000D to the telescope I buy. Would it be that hard to connect the camera to the explorer (i.e. would it be more than a t-adapter?)

Also anyone had experience with the EQ-2 mount? Not worried about the alignment etc as I am confident I can do it with a bit of practice, it're more if it's stable enough and offers a good experience? Also does the optional motor help with taking long exposures or is it not that precise? 

I like the simplicity of the Dobsonian but as far as I know there is no option to 'motorise' it (so I'm wondering whether I will need a completely separate rig in the future if I want to take long exposures etc?)

Thank you so much, apologies if any of the questions are a bit obvious to the experienced. Any other advise (or alternatives) are most welcome

All the best,

Stephanos

 

Speaking as a new scope owner (with a fair bit of photography experience, but basically none with telescopes); a Dobsonian (Alt Azimuth) mount is great for observing - intuitive to point and "bump" to follow objects in the sky. You can also get yourself a much larger scope for the money, as the Dobsionian mount is obviously cheap to construct.

An equatorial mount will allow tracking of objects in the sky, but for astrophotography exposures of any real length the mount needs to be quite substantial. I'm told that many of the cheaper Skywatcher EQ mount + scope combinations are not really suitable for cameras, as the mount isn't up to the task.

The direct SLR connector is (on my 300P at least) just a 2" adaptor that fits into the telescope's focuser, with an M2x0.75 "T" thread. A "T" to EOS EF adaptor is cheap, and will work fine.

With a Dobsonian mount you will be able to get images of the moon, and whilst I haven't had chance yet, possibly the planets (because you take many short exposure frames, so blurring isn't a problem). Any DSO imaging will need an EQ mount.

My advice then would be to get a smaller scope and get input on suitable astrophotography mounts from more experienced users here, or get the 200P Dobsonian, and later get a (probably quite substantial) EQ mount to use it for photography work.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, sploo said:

With a Dobsonian mount you will be able to get images of the moon, and whilst I haven't had chance yet, possibly the planets (because you take many short exposure frames, so blurring isn't a problem). Any DSO imaging will need an EQ mount.

DSO imaging can be done with a driven Dob with enough patience and experience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
41 minutes ago, sploo said:

Yea, but why use two stepper motors when you can just tip the Dob a bit and only use one 😉

True, you could use an equatorial platform instead to move that 13.1 inch Coulter he used to take DSO astrophotos.

Edited by Louis D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/03/2020 at 16:50, Stephanos said:

Hello everyone!

I am new here and about to buy my first telescope and wondering if you could help me make up my mind!

I have been looking at the skywatcher explorer 130P on an eq2 mount and the skyliner 200P Dobsonian. There is obviously a price difference, as well as the diameters and mounts are of course different.

The skyliner supposedly has 'direct slr connection' which is a big plus, as I would like to connect my ancient Canon 1000D to the telescope I buy. Would it be that hard to connect the camera to the explorer (i.e. would it be more than a t-adapter?)

Also anyone had experience with the EQ-2 mount? Not worried about the alignment etc as I am confident I can do it with a bit of practice, it're more if it's stable enough and offers a good experience? Also does the optional motor help with taking long exposures or is it not that precise? 

I like the simplicity of the Dobsonian but as far as I know there is no option to 'motorise' it (so I'm wondering whether I will need a completely separate rig in the future if I want to take long exposures etc?)

Thank you so much, apologies if any of the questions are a bit obvious to the experienced. Any other advise (or alternatives) are most welcome

All the best,

Stephanos

 

Hello,

I started with a 130/900 on EQ-2 and moved to a SW 250 px Dob (which is essentially the same as a 200p but a big bigger).

Let me first say that none of these scopes are good for astrophoto. The EQ 2 is way to wobbly and you would have to spend a lot of money to buy a wedge and a go-to system for the 200p... all that to get a result that is far from ideal. My advice would be for you to start with a scope dedicated to observing and buy another set up for imaging. HEQ 5  mount + SW 80 ED is a common combination for beginner imagers or a star adventurer for wide field.

Secondly I would strongly advise for the 200p. It has great aperture, is easy to use, reasonable to move/store. The difference between a 200mm aperture and a 130mm is quite significant. For example, you would be able to resolve the individual stars on globular clusters (at least 2/3 of the way ti the core) with the 200 while the 130 will only show you nebulosity. And again, the EQ 2 is quite wobbly even for visual use and an EQ mount is far less intuitive.

One last thing i'd like to add is that you should set aside a small budget for a couple of decent eyepieces as the ones you would get with either of those scope are pretty bad. BST starguiders are highly regarded on this forum (and for good reasons) and are reasonably priced.

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/bst-starguider-eyepieces.html

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/03/2020 at 15:50, Stephanos said:

Hello everyone!

I am new here and about to buy my first telescope and wondering if you could help me make up my mind!

I have been looking at the skywatcher explorer 130P on an eq2 mount and the skyliner 200P Dobsonian. There is obviously a price difference, as well as the diameters and mounts are of course different.

The skyliner supposedly has 'direct slr connection' which is a big plus, as I would like to connect my ancient Canon 1000D to the telescope I buy. Would it be that hard to connect the camera to the explorer (i.e. would it be more than a t-adapter?)

Also anyone had experience with the EQ-2 mount? Not worried about the alignment etc as I am confident I can do it with a bit of practice, it're more if it's stable enough and offers a good experience? Also does the optional motor help with taking long exposures or is it not that precise? 

I like the simplicity of the Dobsonian but as far as I know there is no option to 'motorise' it (so I'm wondering whether I will need a completely separate rig in the future if I want to take long exposures etc?)

Thank you so much, apologies if any of the questions are a bit obvious to the experienced. Any other advise (or alternatives) are most welcome

All the best,

Stephanos

 

I would recommend getting something with a synscan system that has to be one regret for me especially in light polluted areas 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stephanos

First of all welcome from Land Down Under

For viewing, cannot go past a Dob, for imaging you definitely need EQ mount with GoTo

I have a 10" Dob, for viewing, and when doing presentations in primary schools and scout groups with my club, very easy to set up

For imaging, have a Skywatcher ED80 on  EQ5pro mount

You are also able to use the ED80 for viewing as well

I also mount my SolarMax11 on my EQ5 mount

 

Skywatcher ED80.jpg

Skywatcher 10in Dob.jpg

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Thank you so much for the replies everyone! Great to get some input from experienced users and other new scope owners as well.

It seems obvious that if you get the bug, two set-ups are a given, one for observing and one for astrophotography. I'll reevaluate my budget and try and make a reasonable choice.

Budget I had in mind was around £300, but if a bit more gets be a lot more for the money I might consider spending more. 

Might go for the 200p for now, as it seems that it has a lot going on for it for observing (and maybe take some short exposure shots with it/try things out). I just thought that with an eq mount, I could set up anywhere (as it's on a tripod) while with the dob it needs to be level/flat. 

Also it seems that anything less than an EQ-5 is a bit wobbly (at least for anything serious)? Would this set-up be a minimum? https://www.firstlightoptics.com/pro-series/skywatcher-evostar-80ed-pro-heq5-pro.html

Once again, thanks guys, much appreciated.

 

 

Edited by Stephanos
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 13/03/2020 at 13:25, happy-kat said:

Perhaps if we had an idea on budget that might help. Also is the observing location far from where you would store your telescope,. Plus do you already own camera lenses for your 1000d.

I have a 'nifty fifty' 50mm f1.8 and a Tamron 18-270mm zoom. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

you can put motors on a dob BUT I think its very expensive like $500 to $600 cdn to me that's way too much as that's as much as the whole scope.

I look at it like an extra or accessory should verey be that much as the main product, it should be like 10%. That's the good news about putting those simple ra drive to a eq1 eq2 or a eq3 its like $50

The difference tho of the 2 will be huge. The 8" will collect a lot more light and if u want to look at the deep sky stuff that's where u need to be to start 8" and up.

The dob has no manual controls and high power viewing I find is not the greastest, as pushing and pulling the tube is very easy to over shoot in the ep if you are at highter powers.

This too me is really a hard question tho, If you were to just want to get the eq 130 on eq2 I would say that's a good  start, but it just cant compete against a 8" scope, so even tho I said dob has some issues I may get that .

Just in case u didn't know they sell a 8" f/5 reflector on a eq5 mount its kinda midway and has all the features u need BUT will be heavier. So I am not sure what your limit is If that's too much they sell the 6"f/5 version too on cg4 mount

joejaguar

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, joe aguiar said:

The dob has no manual controls and high power viewing I find is not the greastest, as pushing and pulling the tube is very easy to over shoot in the ep if you are at highter powers.

I find that not to be the case if you've got a well balanced, solidly built scope with the sticktion set just right.  Yes, many mass produced Dobs are jumpy right out of the box and will require some refinement.  Custom Dobs tend to be very usable from the git go.  I've had no issues tracking at high powers with Obsession, Starmaster, Tectron, and other Dobs.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • 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.