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SkyMax 127 v's Nexstar 6


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Hi Layor,

Its a right old minefield isn't it?

I really cannot comment on your choice as I have never used the 150 pro, in fact I have never even seen one in the flesh as it were. From what I have gleaned reading around is that the longer focal length scopes are excellent for planetary work and the moon, if thats where your interests lay then it looks good. If you really are thinking about upgrading later see if you can push to an EQ6, you can add motors and goto later it works out the same price. That way you are future proofing yourself, or even go secondhand, there was an eq6 pro goto going on here for 700 quid yesterday thats 180 quid off the RRP.

I am trying to go from A to B without having to make a loss selling stuff to finance new stuff so am giving it careful thought, otherwise you end up spending considerably more in the long run. An EQ6 and the 150pro would be a keeper for AP on solar system stuff thats for sure with the option of additionally buying over the years a refractor or reflector for DSO AP and visual, with guide scope which will all sit comfortably on the EQ6 upgraded with motors. To me the mount is probably the most important purchase of all as it dictates what you can do.

Of course portability, space and many other things come into the equation too. My first scope is a 114mm reflector and a manual EQ mount which when I bought it in 1995 was 400 quid the 150 equiv was 600 :D bearing in mind the mount is prolly an EQ2/3 and things like the focuser are plastic (Celestron) Wobbly view aside the one thing I hanker for is more light and a 150mm just wouldn't cut it for me, but then I am more after the DSO's ATM.

Also think about eyepieces, I am assuming you don't have any, the pro only comes with a 28mm, you will definitely want to get some reasonable ones, also a dew shield looks like a must and possibly heated dew straps otherwise within an hour you won't be observing in the winter :D

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Wow!

That looks nice, really nice. Yes, I think I could stretch to that. I've not looked at the C8 SGT before as I was only looking to spend around £500 - £700. But what the heck!:D

Layor

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I've just seen the C8 in 'Harrison Telescopes' fot £999. Does anyone know anything about them? I've seen a few comments about 'Scope n' Skies' and not to buy from them because folk have had problems with deliveries etc.

FLO appears to be the shop of choice on the site so at least I know they must be reliable, but you have still got to look after the pennies though:D

Layor

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Hi Mark, you make some sound sense in your post. Future proofing is always a good thing. I've been messing with computers for years and always try and go a little bit further than I need to just for that reason.

If the pennies will allow of course;)

Layor

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The C8 SCT is a brilliant OTA, the CG5 mount is not too bad. Many will say you want a heavier mount for serious AP but for visual and some AP it's fine. The C8 OTA usually sells for about £1,000.00 on it's own so for the whole setup that's a great buy as you're essentially getting the mount thrown in for free.

John

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Hi Mark, you make some sound sense in your post. Future proofing is always a good thing. I've been messing with computers for years and always try and go a little bit further than I need to just for that reason.

If the pennies will allow of course;)

Layor

Hi Layor,

Computers is where I get that from, been messing with computers for ages and always pushing too, i7 is running at 4ghz atm :D

Well, that C8 would be great if you have your mind set on that type of scope I reckon, and I seem to recall that the mount has 2 inch legs too making it very steady.

Time to check google for some reviews and AP piccies :D

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Hi Mark, I have recently built an i7 930 with windows 7 running 64 bit but only at standard ATM, fitted a HD 5850 and 6Gb memory, runs like a dream:D. My other rig is an intel dual core VSTA, again with 7 but a 32 bit with a now dated 3870:p.

I'm going for the C8 and I presume that I will need the obvious 'T' ring etc, but will I need to get the barlow as well and if so what types are there or what would be the best?

Layor

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This scope is basically what i have. Its very good for visual, and i am working on getting astro photography of it, but there is LOTS to learn to get the most from it.

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Hi Earl,

I think I'm going to have a job keeping hold of my money now:D

I noticed that you have a Canon 450D, I went and bought one last Tuesday, brilliant!

What exactly are CCD's? I know they are a camera of sorts but until I joined the SL I'd never heard of them:rolleyes:

Layor

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In there most basic for they are a web cam with its lens removed.

You film say the moon, then use a piece of software to combine all the images and make a good one out of all the data.

Then of course you can also spend thousands on top end CCD's :D

So far i must admit im not impressed with my CCD I prefer to use my Canon.

But I do need to invest some more time into it before i do dismissing it.

And therein is the Big issue.. TIME, we get plenty of time to talk but not enough to put it all in to practise, this can mean we get the theory but getting it to work is frustrating. (this is how i find it myself)

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Hi Mark, I have recently built an i7 930 with windows 7 running 64 bit but only at standard ATM, fitted a HD 5850 and 6Gb memory, runs like a dream:D. My other rig is an intel dual core VSTA, again with 7 but a 32 bit with a now dated 3870:p.

I'm going for the C8 and I presume that I will need the obvious 'T' ring etc, but will I need to get the barlow as well and if so what types are there or what would be the best?

Layor

Hi Layor,

Get a decent heatsink and crank that baby up, mine hits 90+C in this heat crunching seti tasks, the chip is happy to run warm, I try to keep it under 90 though :D had it for 15 months now its a 920 and it flies.

As to Barlows, you are asking the wrong person really, I have a basic Celestron one, but I have chosen the SH EP route and have a couple of Meade 4000's 32mm and 9.7, a Celestron Omni 15mm and the original SMA 26mm Celestron and a cheapy Skywatcher 6.3 about 70 quid the lot, about the same price as a decent Barlow which only halves the EP FL and I reckon I have most of it covered with what I have without needing a barlow. EP's aren't top end but a bit better than the freebies with scopes. Time for a new thread I reckon and see what existing owners or more experienced people think.

Now I just need to buy the damned scope, just a bad back stopping me ATM so plans for the Autumn, unless VAT goes up then sooner :D

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Hi Mark, Good idea on the thread! I'll start looking around tomorrow:D

And yes, I'll probably start OCing later.

BTW you probably need to build a freezer around your rig:D

I'm off for some kip, see you all later!

Layor

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Hello

I just purchased a skymax 127 and this scope is awesome, I've only had clear nights from where I am on two occasions since purchasing the scope but jesus wept, so worth the wait.

Thursday the 3rd & Friday the 4th (June 2010) we had perfect nights, I already had the 32mm plossl loaded and went to have a look at some stars, I am in a 2nd floor flat with balcony pointing slightly south east but not much, and at about 12:30 on both nights I noticed this glowing thing right in the middle of my viewpoint, aimed the scope at it & wow!

It looked like some kind of twisty turny balls of light that were changing through different hues in the red/blue spectrum it reminded me of an atom.

I looked it up on my ipod using distant suns 2 & it said I was looking at the Galactic Centre, not sure if this is the thing I was looking at but it was an awesome sight.

Easy tracking as well take no notice of you have to point it north etc, etc, if you just wanna look at stars (after leveling & aligning the finder scope (mine also needed a bit of a business card under the adjustment screws)), you just power the think up and after some kind of warning about the sun you can enter all your details but there is even no need for this step (apart from the sun warning), you can just use the up, down, left & right controls on the handset and go where you want to (I assume that this is the same for both scopes, cause the mount is the same), & tracking stuff is well easy once you get used to the controls. I tracked this spinny whirling thing for about an hour over both nights and on the second night (Friday), I showed my misses and she was well impressed, sweet.

Haven't tried out the Goto bit yet & don't intend to until I've learnt a few bits myself using a starmap (well Stellararium, Distant Suns 2 & Starry Night Pro Plus), and a planisphere. Oh and be prepared to spend some money, sorry did I say that, I have spent about 550 so far and my budget was £250, scary but well worth it.

So grab a 127 AZ Goto, top scope and remember that your budget will go out the windows as soon as you buy a Goto scope, you will need a power tank, dew shield some higher mm lenses for DSOs etc etc.

Did I mention the extra's.

Hope that helps.

Clear Skys are sweet, may be we could all chip in like a fiver each and buy a massive blower to blow them all away! :D

Shane

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Hi Layor,

Many of us have been where you are now. I just wanted to add a couple of points. Firstly, the sky ain't going anywhere, so you do have time to make mistakes, change direction, etc. Secondly, if you buy and sell second hand, chopping and changing your kit, won't be too costly (the only scope I bought new was the 6SE, great scope BTW, but I'm now on my 7th scope, and not had any problems with the 2nd hand kit I've bought). Finally, Deep Sky astrophotography is truly expensive, say £2k for enough kit to produce reasonable images and a lot more if you're the kind of person who is never satisfied with 2nd best. It also has a steep learning curve.

Put that all together and I'd say don't worry about not making the definitive purchase right away. Get something you think you'll be able to handle and learn easily so you get the most use out of it. As for aperture concerns, the darkness of your skies, has as big, if not a bigger, impact on what you can see. So getting a 5" scope and somewhere dark to take it, should give you plenty to look at until you are more certain that spending more money is a wise move.

I have the Skywatcher 127 Mak (as well as a 12" dob, 3" frac and a PST on the way) currently. I bought it when I have moved back into Glasgow city from the burbs. I'm lucky though to have a south facing balcony to plonk it on to do some planetary observing and imaging to give me my regular astro fix, in between trips to dark sites with the big dob.

Hope that helps, Martin

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Thanks for all the info and tips everyone:icon_salut:

Because I have this opportunity to afford it I'm going for the Celestron C8, I know it's a big jump from a 127 but what the heck:D and like any other hobby you are bound to spend more the more you get into it!

Look forward to seeing you on other forums!:D

Cheers, Layor

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Thanks for all the info and tips everyone:icon_salut:

Because I have this opportunity to afford it I'm going for the Celestron C8, I know it's a big jump from a 127 but what the heck:D and like any other hobby you are bound to spend more the more you get into it!

Look forward to seeing you on other forums!:D

Cheers, Layor

Well said that man :D

Have fun :)

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