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Meade DS2080 LNT 80mm computerised GOTO telescope


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Hello,

This is my first post here, although I have already taken some advice on a decent pair of binoculars from this thread (thanks FLO), and all the other posters that have given good information :D

http://stargazerslounge.com/sponsor-announcements-offers/78322-how-much-spend-binocular-astronomy.html

Even though it has been pretty cloudy since I've had these I have still had the chance to see the moon and am very very impressed.

I thought that buying an even bigger pair would give me better clearer views so I purchased some Celestron Skymaster 15 x 70's as well.

I was not impressed with clarity, the build quality or overall feel of these bino's compared to my Opticrons & there was even some kind of defect on the right objective lense, I tried cleaning it with the cloth that came with them but on closer inspection I found that it was actually a fault in the glass, also no matter how they were adjusted I'd get kind of a boss eyed effect as if they were not aligned properly at the factory, no need to say they were sent back to where they came from ASAP.

So I wouldn't like to make the same mistake again and was wondering if anyone could give some more info on the following telescope which I saw on the gadget show, although it came last it was up against telescopes that cost a lot more and I only have about 200-240 to spend.

Thanks in advance

Shane

HERTS

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it's been said before and no doubt will be again but if you are willing to learn the sky, don't want to do photography, and don't mind nudging the scope to keep the object in the field of view, you will get way better views through something like an 8" skywatcher dob for about that price. it's a real scope as against a toy.

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Hello kniclander

Thanks for the reply, I am certainly willing and am currently learning the sky I think that it is an important part of the hobby, I am currently going through the TTC Video lecture Understanding the Universe An introduction to Astrononmy with Alex Filippenko and am thinking about joining the - South West Herts Astronomical Society.

Which is the closest Astro club to me ;-)

Also, thanks for the confirmation I kind of had a feeling that this would be a gimmick type telescope, can you provide me with any links to telescopes like the one that you mentioned I could google it, but google is sometimes not your freind I booked a hotel in Windsor last night and have today found laterooms doing the same hotel for £30 less, Doh!

A link to a reputable telecsope sales site with good prices on decent telescopes would be most appreciated.

Direct links to specific telescopes would be even better. :D

Thanks

Shane

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Hello again

OK I found the Skywatcher Skyliner 200P Dobsonian for £265 (bit over budget but could just go that bit extra).

Silly question time.

Does this scope come with a tripod and is it possible to use this scope for terrestrial use with an errecting lense?

Cheers

Shane

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it doesn't come with a tripod it comes with its own stand that you can see in the pics. that's why it's so cheap but if you ever get a tripod you can put it on a tripod. the problem with an erecting lens it that it adds length to the light path and you might find that you can't reach focus with your e/ps. also, you look stupid looking through a dob and saying "I see no ships" etc etc

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:-) I won't be looking for ships unless there space ones.

Thanks for your advice appreciated, it would be nice to have a scope that did both Terrestrial & Astronomical viewing, any recommendations for that would be nice.

Cheers

Shane

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Hi kniclander

I found this review for the Nexstar 4 SE which was also reviewed on the gadget show and this one came first, anyway in the review the guy says that his Skywatcher 200 is too big to take about with him so he bought the nexstar, however after a year or so he wishes he a purchased a Skymax 127 instead of the Nexstar. So it sounds like the Skywatcher 200 would be too big for me to lug about (unless he's talking about a different scope)

http://www.astro-baby.com/reviews/nexstar 4SE/nexstar4se.htm

I have had a look at the Skymax 127 and this will do terrestrial (focus down to 8m) and Astronomical, now I'm really confused

It was a nice clear night last night so I went out with my bins at 23:10 till about 12 and had a peak at some craters on the moon and there were loads of stars out, I saw the big dipper (or the little dipper, not sure which one, but it was almost straight up, near the zenith I think is what you guys call it), it was a good feeling, I have ordered a n51 planisphere and a guide to the northern constellations and am looking forward to getting a telescope but I'm not sure theres one out there that will suit my needs, thats if one exists.

During the day I would use it to look at scenery the right way up.

During clear nights I will star gaze, however I love the view I get through my binos and was wondering if there is a telescope that will allow a really wide field of view (enough to fit some of the constellations in, or at least the asterisms), but close up.

Then if I want to zoom in to a specific place I could do so by changing a lense or adding a lense.

Is this possible, I hope so.

If not I'll stick with my binos and continue learning the sky, I was gonna buy a new netbook but might also put this towards the telescope if I can find one that does all that stuff for around 350.

Thanks in Advance

Shane

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Hi kniclander

I found this review for the Nexstar 4 SE which was also reviewed on the gadget show and this one came first, anyway in the review the guy says that his Skywatcher 200 is too big to take about with him so he bought the nexstar, however after a year or so he wishes he a purchased a Skymax 127 instead of the Nexstar. So it sounds like the Skywatcher 200 would be too big for me to lug about (unless he's talking about a different scope)

http://www.astro-baby.com/reviews/nexstar 4SE/nexstar4se.htm

Shane

depends what you mean by "lug about" - if you mean taking it on a hiking/ camping holiday, i agree, I wouldn't fancy that with an 8" dob :D. if you mean carry it to a car or round a garden or a few yards, it only wieghs about 25kg (I guess?, my 10" one weighs about 30). It can also be split into two pieces and put back together in a matter of seconds.

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I live in a flat so need to be able to lug it up and down two flights of stairs, also I am miles away from anywhere dark so I would need to get it in the car and drive it at least 18 miles away to get any proper use out of it (dunstable downs), shame it looks like a really nice scope and appoligies for not mentioning in the first place, but I really need something that I can grab and go, I also have nowhere to store it outside so I am worried about dew problems.

Any further advice greatly appreciated

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The Alt/Az Goto Skywatcher 127 Mak has a bit more useful aperture than the Celestron 4" and is well regarded. It will be more robust and compact than the 130 Newt for example, but is a bit more expensive than the Newt. I think it would be a good grab and go especially on the moon and planets. Only limitation is its long focal length which will limit widefield DSO work a bit, but plenty of people have one, might be worth checking out with an owner how good it is on DSOs

Edited by sgazer
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Yep that does look like something I could use, nice looking scope and I am so tempted to just go for it but then again I am in no rush.

The specs say that the highest power is x254

So is it correct to say that I wouldn't be able to use a 2x barlow with the 25mm EP as this would take the scope to 300 - which is just x6 over but may/will affect focusing.

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The highest mags are given as roughly 2x the aperture as a guide only. This can vary a lot with the object and the seeing/atmospheric conditions. Typically, people use about 200-250 on planets, any more and it's difficult to focus, vibrations are a problem and the image will become dim. It's often better to have a clear small image than a large fuzzy one. Most planets and the moon are bright so can take high mags without getting too dark. At high mags, you'll see some nice craters and features on the moon. 300x might be pushing it, but on good nights the moon will take it and perhaps some brighter planets.

On deep sky stuff, you want to keep the mag a low as possible otherwise the image will dim too much. A lot of DSOs are quite big anyway.

Edited by sgazer
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Thanks sn00p

Do all the mount variations come with a 2x barlow, as it's not listed on the GOTO page, looks like a top scope though, have you got any extra EPs for it & how would you descibe your viewing experience so far?

Thanks in Advance.

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