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Advice for a night sky viewing telescope with photography later down the line

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Hi all, I nearly took the plunge earlier with a purchase of a Bresser Messier Dobsonian 8. 
This was supposed to be a gift for my wife (and me) for our wedding anniversary. 

I was looking at doing photography with it however have been doing more reading and others on other forums have said it isn’t really suitable for deep space, nebula etc and that I’d be better off with something like a skywatcher explorer 130pds and an EQ5 pro mount. 

From what I was told about the Bresser, down the road I would be able to add that to an EQ Mount too but now I’m just getting very confused as to what to purchase.

so in short I want to:

be able to use just to view the night sky, with the option down the road to be able to do deep space photography. Oh and it’s ideally got to be in stock. 
budget around 400-500 for the scope and a stand (hence the dobo I was going to go for). 
can any one help guide me please? 

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Advice for a night sky viewing telescope with photography later down the line

Astrophotography is a bit of a dark art and once a telescope is set up for photography people tend not to make the sort of adjustments required for using it as a visual instrument. In reality it's a one or the other choice. 

7 hours ago, shackers said:

This was supposed to be a gift for my wife (and me) for our wedding anniversary. 

For your wife, or for you? What does your wife want for a gift and if it is a telescope, what does she want to do with it? You can't just chuck a camera on your wife's visual scope for a quick photograph while she's popped back inside for a cup of tea. If you buy her a gift, but she can't use it because it's set up for you to do photography, then sounds like a very quick way to have an ex-wife.

7 hours ago, shackers said:

budget around 400-500

For astrophotography? Triple it, and then you have a chance at buying a beginner set up, hence the reason that you have been advised to buy a cheaper, visual scope. 

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The requirements for deep-space astrophotography have been pretty well advertised and discussed online.  Newbies tend to think it's just a matter of sticking a camera on a visual scope but sadly it just ain't so.  The typical setup is a small aperture apochromatic refractor mounted on a heavy duty GoTo mount, plus various bits of ancillary gear, and the bill running to something like £1500.  Nor is it necessesarily easy to get good results.  For more info browse the forum or buy "Make Every Photon Count"

You could re-mount the Bresser on a heavy duty GoTo equatorial mount at a cost of around £750 (probably more than the Dob cost in the first place) to give you a rather large and awkward setup, good for finding and viewing faint objects but not particularly suited to astrophotography.

I suggest that you buy a scope purely for visual use and defer the astrophotography till you can afford to buy the proper kit.  Or explore the widefield options of a camera mounted directly on a smaller and cheaper mount.

Edited by Cosmic Geoff
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Hi and welcome to SGL.

The 8" dob is a very good choice. Unless you have to carry it down 3 flights of stairs, or have a bad back.
The reason for this comment is that the best scope is always the one that gets most use.

Provided you can handle an 8" dob, it is going to be a scope to keep for years.
It will give stunning views and is (almost) as simple as set down, point and look.
You can get high magnification for lunar and planetary viewing. It has the light gather to pick up faint objects. A good all rounder.
As a shared experience where one of you locates something of interest, then lets the other take a peek, you can't beat it.

Astrophotography is financially like tearing up £50 notes for a hobby. Where visual astronomy is only tearing up £10 notes😁

In addition astrophotography can easily become hours of scope/mount setup, running outside to keep an eye on things.
In the days following, much computer time editing and stacking and processing.
Generally no shared experiences - other than the end picture.
OK that is not everyone's take. Some enjoy just taking a few quick 30sec exposures using a DSLR on the scope.
Others construct completely automated setups and leave them to remote locations, communicating via the web.

I tried semi-serious astrophotography, non automated.
Typically leaving an observatory scope doing repeated exposures on one object and keep popping in to check.
It was very frustrating when things didn't work out as intended. A whole evening to produce a few fuzzy blobs.😪

Meanwhile in the garden I had another scope that I looked through and enjoyed.
If I couldn't find an object, I looked for something else.
If cloud came over, I looked in a different part of the sky.

Enjoy the journey,


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