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Over the winter I got into playing with a phone mount on my telescope eyepiece and got some pictures of the moon... But not much else as there are always limitations on what a phone camera can do (and how well I can align the camera to the eyepiece).
If I was to upgrade to a camera to mount onto my scope, what should I be looking for? I have been tempted to give it a go with whatever I can find on ebay or similar, but don't want to buy something only to discover that it's lacking something important. The only thing I know to look for at the moment is to make sure there is a suitable mounting ring for the camera (a T ring I believe they're called).
My targets will probably be: Orion nebular, Jupiter and Saturn to start with. This is purely because these are targets I know I can find.
Scope: Skywatcher Explorer 130P (650mm focal length, 130mm diameter)
I have a CPC 800 Edge HD as well as an Orion Starshoot Autoguider. I recently ordered a ZWO ASI294 MC Pro colour camera. In terms of the auto guide function I had planned on using PHD2 (which I already downloaded onto my Mac laptop). In terms of researching software that would allow for control of the camera I understand there are a number of options. I considered purchasing an ASIair, however, I understand that is not compatible with the Orion Starshoot Autoguider, and therefore I would need to replace that with a ZWO. I am hesitant to want to do that, even though it would be convenient not to have to bother with laptop connectivity. Right now I've been using my iPhone for goto functionality with Starsense and Skyportal wifi. I understand there are a number of options available for Windows based PCs in terms of control of camera and image acquisition. BackyardEOS (for DSLR cameras), Astrophotography Tool, and Nebulosity. These seem to be the most popular. However, it looks to me as though APT is just for Windows based PC. As well, not sure the extent to which Nebulosity is seamless when it comes to Mac compatibility. Is there a recommended Image Acquisition software for Mac users? Is a Windows PC laptop dedicated for astrophotography the best approach (e.g. second hand etc)? I would appreciate your recommendations. Thanks
Very Short Explanation: I'm disabled (43) and desperately trying to find ways to still bond/spend time with my youngest son (13).
My son expressed an interest, about two months ago, in Astronomy after watching a few YouTube videos on the subject (specifically, the moon and our neighboring planets). He asked if one day we could get a telescope. I was somewhat surprised when, over the course of the following days/weeks, he didn't forget about his request or shift his attention to other, "more 13 year old pressing matters." In fact, he became increasingly MORE excited, despite our lack of progress on the subject (except for many hours of questions and research regarding all things space).
So, I decided that somehow, someway, I would discover the means in which to make this dream of his a reality. However, due to our financial situation, I wasn't sure it would ever happen. Well, lo and behold, I stumbled across a Vivitar 76700 Reflecting Telescope, while killing time before a drs appt, at the local Goodwill, for only $14.99. I immediately withdrew my "Emergency $20" from my wallet, and I purchased it!
When I finally arrived home, I began the process of putting it together. Unfortunately, I soon discovered that it lacked everything which is placed in the "lens hole/slot" on the top, back of the telescope (just a hole, no lens, barrel, or anything originally included to fill said hole.
!!!EDIT/CORRECTION!!!: It DOES have the piece which screws onto the side of the telescope that has "adjustor knobs" below it for, I'm assuming, extending/retracting the lens(?). There is just nothing INSIDE this piece except a hole/space. Sorry!
This is our youngest son (13), who is a "loner." He is very quiet/shy/lacks self-confidence, and suffers from mental/learning disabilities, but truly is "sharp as a tack" in many, many ways. So, when we discover something, anything, educationally speaking, that peaks his interest, we try our hardest to encourage him!
Now, I don't really have any/much money to spend on getting this telescope in complete working order (I am NOT asking or soliciting for ANYTHING!!) , but I refuse to pass up this chance to bond with him, encourage this budding passion for Astronomy, and help get him OFF that blasted PlayBoxCube more frequently, and into something more beneficial for his young, developing mind!
Now to my question(s)...
What further (inexpensive) equipment would suffice in completing his new-to-us telescope, and increase his allure to the wonders awaiting his discovery in the heavens above? Quality vs Price? Trade-offs? On-topic/slightly off-specific-topic advice?
Links, articles, groups, periodicals, videos...ANY suggestions gratefully welcomed!
Thank you, in advance, for indulging my attempted-to-be-brief background/relevant personal info, and for taking the time to help this guy be a (better) dad again. I feel blessed to have found this particular site/group.
Live Long & Prosper,
Just thinking how this setup would compare to normal astrophotography setups. Imagine a Nikon coolpix p1000 on an equatorial mount. Has anyone done that yet?
As I saw in the YouTube videos about the camera, it has absolutely no chromatic aberration, so I assume it's got apochromatic lens. It's magnification is extremely good (125x with 16MP sensor). The aperture is quite small tho compared to many different refractors available.
So what do you think about the idea: astrophotography with a Nikon?
I've been into astronomy since I was young and more recently astrophotography. I've just (finally) got my new telescope, a Celestron AVX 9.25" Edge HD with various accessories including a reducer lens. I'm still trying to get the auto guider up and running as that's being a pain and need to get a dew heater for the telescope (currently lookjng for a decent one). I'm also looking into what filters to get as well as that's still fairly new to me, at least for the astrophotography side.
I'm also very much into microscopy and looking at microphotography, I'm currently saving up to get a new microscope.
I've also got a facebook group where I share astronomy and science news, where members can share astronomy and science news or their own astro or science images, discuss things, etc. https://www.facebook.com/groups/2494142714158646/?ref=share
Anyway, hello to all from Cambridge, UK :-)