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I love my new imaging scope!!!


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So last night I had a wee nap early on so that I could stay up late on a school night. I was desperate to try out my new C80ED-R and 0.85X reducer / flattener... That's why I'm posting here, rather than in the imaging section, these ugly images are purely equptment checks.

Things did not start well. I was trying to use a lot of new kit, and it was all too much I think. Despite having hooked everything up during the day and finding that it all worked like a dream, the pressure of the moment was too much for the technology when it came to the real thing. Both APT and PHD decided to go crash happy on me, so after a while I decided to give up on APT, and removed the USB hub from the connection mix. After that PHD at least started to behave itself.

I also thought at first that I couldn't get the reducer to come to focus, but that was a nice quirk of the Windows image preview app. After taking each focus sub I hit the button to preview the next image... Apparently it didn't bother, and just reloaded the same one again! :icon_scratch: But once I had figured that out all was well.

So for reference, here's my first attempt at NGC7000 taken with my old achro, resplendant with bloated and halo infested stars :mad:

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So first was a test of the vanilla scope at f7.5. Not too bad really, the edges show some defects, but I've seen worse. But so much better star colours. You can see that they're actually different, and not all bright blue!

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Then I tried out the reducer / flattener. At 0.85X this brings the scope down to f6.37. As you can see edges are much much better! Not perfect, but I don't think there's anything bad enough to make me want to crop it out :)

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Please excuse the rough pictures, they're only 10 minutes worth of data, and I did a very rapid stack and "process", if you can call it that, before work this morning. But the main thing is that the new kit is great! Roll on the darker nights!

Edited by samtheeagle
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Yes, overall it was a good test session. Shame some of the technology misbehaved, but the optics were on song, and that's the main thing :)

Connection wise it turns out the the draw tube of the stock R&P focuser of the C80 is threaded appropriately for the reducer to attach directly. To get the IR/UV cut and LP filters in the mix I wrapped some insulating tape around them to get a nice snug fit inside the draw tube before I attached the reducer. A total bodge, but it worked :icon_scratch:

I'm hoping to get an adaptor from the AstroBoot in the post today. Fingers crossed that'll allow me to connect everything up in a more robust fashion.

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Were these all taken with the same settings? (duration for example)

The first image taken with the achro has considerably more data than the two I got last night. The ones from last night were both 5 x 120 seconds at ISO 1600. No darks were applied, but I did use 10 flats and 40 bias frames as part of the stacking.

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Thanks Stuart, it's a cracker! :icon_scratch: Coupled with the reducer / flattener I have no excuses now... I just need to get lots of data, and work on the processing side of things. It's taken me a little over a year, but incremental upgrades here and there have given me a lovely setup.

Maybe now I'll stop buying metal tubes every 5 minutes... Yeah right! :)

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