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D:Ream

There isn't much that I feel I need. A solid soul and the blood I bleed...

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I think I have been convinced that, on balance, it is a good idea to list equipment if it is helping people. However, I remain a little alarmed by the proportion of chatter on here that relates to equipment and I do find it off-putting.

Well, it is a forum, after all, not a telescope, and as such being here is indeed an occupation for [pun intended] cloudy nights.

People come here partly because of questions with respect to equipment, while they feel more confident that they can look through the eyepiece themselves just fine, thank you (even though there's lots to tell about observation as well).

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Lol D:Ream - SC-32 is a webcam modification for long exposure photography. The technique was pioneered by Steve Chambers :)

Ah, clearly I need to do some more research before obtaining any more virtual equipment! :) Or perhaps I just have a very large webcam?

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I have my kit listed in my signature, but my scope is second hand. One of the adjustment screws on the tripod leg is broken so i have a big ol G calmp holding it. I really only listed my kit as i had seen it on others signatures and thought it the norm. Also when posting images or doing observing reports it saves you time having to type the kit used every time.

To be honest, the general feel of the forum is anything but bragging about kit.

All kit has its place in astronomy, wether it be binoculars or scope and chances are that you are using binoculars that will outperform a lot of cheap and nasty scopes out there.:)

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I only put my kit because I was posting quite a bit in the "observing" section, and the first question when you describe what you see, is what are you looking through? I wouldn't see it as elitist. I have no doubt that there are people with scopes half the aperture of mine, a quarter of the cost, and who live in a darker place and can therefore see more than I can.

Also take into account what else you spend money on, perhaps you wonder how some people can afford £1000 on a telescope, yet you'd happily spend £10,000 on a car, or you smoke and drink your way through the equivalent of several telescopes a year. It's all relative :)

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Hey all. I'm a binocular newbie and really enjoying it. However, I'm starting to find all the equipment discussion slightly alarming. Most people on here seem to (understandably) list their stuff as a badge of honour which for poor lost generation souls like myself, I am frankly finding a little off putting. It increasinly feels like there may be a glass ceiling beyond which I can take my interest no further. I'm wondering whether the "problem" might be solved by joining an astronomical club? Or perhaps I should stick to more affordable pastimes? What do you (very helpful) people think?

Thanks! :)

You're right. It takes a brave individual to say 'the Emperor has no clothes'. We should talk more 'astronomy' and less equipment. I suppose it could be argued that it's helpful for people who are looking to buy equipment, to know what others have but essentially you're correct, we are far too materialistic on here. I'm deleting my signature details right now.:)

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We should talk more 'astronomy' and less equipment.

I agree ... but it's nice to have something to talk about when the weather is not cooperative (that's most of the time) and there is clearly a place for people wanting advice on equipment, at all levels from £50 to £50,000+.

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You're right. It takes a brave individual to say 'the Emperor has no clothes'. We should talk more 'astronomy' and less equipment. I suppose it could be argued that it's helpful for people who are looking to buy equipment, to know what others have but essentially you're correct, we are far too materialistic on here. I'm deleting my signature details right now.:)

hey, where's that lovely homemade dob gone...!

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I'm deleting my signature details right now.:)

And the best thing is, now that awesome Carl Sagan quote really stands out!

Here's another: "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known."

And another: "Every one of us is, in the cosmic perspective, precious. If a human disagrees with you, let him live. In a hundred billion galaxies, you will not find another."

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I find it strange that some members feel so strongly on the subject.

Me too...

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I think I have been convinced that, on balance, it is a good idea to list equipment if it is helping people. However, I remain a little alarmed by the proportion of chatter on here that relates to equipment and I do find it off-putting.

With respect, there are equipment sections which is where equipment is discussed. There are other sections where many other topics are discussed. You are free to partake as you will and contribute as you like :)

No need for alarm and finding things off-putting - just frequent the sections that do it for you :)

Edited by John

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hey, where's that lovely homemade dob gone...!

It's still in my album section thingy.

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I dont list my kit because I DONT want the status.

A lot of my kt has been bought secondhand at a good price by the way.

I wouldnt be out off the hobby by a limitation in hardware. I think one of the nice things in the hobby is that people arent usually snobby about kit. Ok the odd one or two might be but that just shows their insecurity/ignorance/lack of emotional smarts.

People know that I am perfectly happy to let people have a look at/through my hardware at events and I for one would never look down on anyone with lesser kit, after unless you own Mt Palomar someone will always have something bigger/better.

So dont be put off please :)

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i'm glad thats cleared up...i thought it was there to remoind me i had a scope i cant use! i truely thought that if i kept repeating it to myself i would finaly work it all out...!

dont be put off by anyone or anything, if you enjoy what you do at the pace that you do it, just roll with it!

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I am new to astronomy, (just ordered my scope today) and i found knowing what equiptment people have very helpfull.

Especially in the imaging section, where people have put their pics up of planets and so on. Knowing what scope they used gave me a good perspective of what i was looking for. Im sure i would still be looking now otherwise.

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I find it strange that some members feel so strongly on the subject.

I suddenly remembered what it's like to be poor !

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I'm noticing a polarity in this thread, and there are some strong opinions about those who are interested in equipment. I'm interested in it, mainly because I don't have any. So naturally, I want to get information about stuff that one way or another, will cost me money to acquire. I want to get it right. When you buy a car, you read reviews, and go for test drives to ensure you're getting the right vehicle for your needs. This is the same thing. You can't test drive a scope really. FLO aren't going to let me take one home and wait for a clear night to use it, and then return it if I feel it's unsuitable. So I have to rely on the opinions of others. I can do that if I see someone has the equipment I'm interested in.

That's not to say I'm not interested in Astronomy. Obviously I am, or I wouldn't want a telescope. That's pretty much a given.

This reverse snobbery... almost a disparaging, derisory attitude towards those that discuss equipment is also off-putting. I feel I shouldn't be cluttering up the forums with newbie equipment questions and should be contributing to the scientific.

Well.. perhaps so.. but before I can do that, I have to learn enough to be able to contribute. Sure, I don't need a telescope to embark upon genuine academic enquiry, but surely, this has to be contextualised by actually looking at stuff out there. That's why Galileo built a telescope isn't it?

There's an equipment section, and there's a beginner's questions section. Understandably, these are going to be biased towards "What should I buy.

I'm not intimidated by people who have thousands of pound's worth of equipment. Nor do I envy them (well.. perhaps a little)... I appreciate that I can enjoy this hobby with a pair of binoculars, or even with my eyes alone. However.. I want a telescope, and I want advice regarding which one to buy. It's a shame that some people see listing equipment as a "waste of bandwidth" because if that attitude prevails, then it can only be a barrier to new blood to the hobby, as newbies will feel they can't ask about equipment.

If you care about the hobby, you should be interested in everything and anything that will help newbies into it. If that means answering questions about what scope to buy, then so be it. I'm pretty certain you all had the same questions when you were new to the hobby, so is it a case of "Pull the ladder up Jack.. I'm all right now"?

Sorry.. rambling a bit now. I'm just confused as to why listing what telescope you have can be a bad thing? I'm equally baffled why it is off-putting. Personally I;d be FAR more put off if no one wanted to talk about equipment. It would feel like some kind of old boy's network where I'd need to be wearing the right school tie to enter.

Just my 2p worth. Well.. probably more like £2 worth... but that's inflation for you :)

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@pook

To me it looks like most of the posts on this thread are saying the same thing, people list their equipment to help others rather than to brag. I'm not sure where you are seeing 'reverse snobbery', the consensus seems to be that this isn't a bad thing.

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I'm not suggesting that this is the dominant attitude, but certain comments such as "It's a waste of bandwidth" and I also read, although I'm not certain it was in this thread, words to the effect of "I often have a little titter at people's sigs that list equipment" etc.

The attitude that people list their equipment to show off etc.

I've just seen no evidence of that.

You're right... most on here DO list their gear to help. I think I'm just amazed that there are actually people (albeit a minority) that think it's a bad thing... that it's bragging in some way.

I'm sure there ARE people who brag.. somewhere.. there always is. I'm a photographer, and I'm always amazed that there are amateurs out there who genuinely believe that having a Nikon D3X or a EOS5D MkII will help them take better photographs. They've actually sneered at me when I've been on a commercial job and "only" been using a D7000 or an old D2X, or, when I'm doing architectural or still life work, laughing at me for using "An old camera where you put a cloth over your head"

All the gear.... no idea. Some use cameras as social status jewellery.

There are always those who think they can buy talent and creativity. I'm also certain there are those with large disposable incomes who think they can buy a 14" SCT, a huge mount... advanced guiding gear etc... and automatically start producing the best astro imaging shots.

So far however.... I've seen little evidence of that.

I have however, seen evidence of people being derisory towards those that talk about equipment. A small number perhaps... but....

(shrug).

I'm not being negative towards the forum; This is a great place. I've learned so much in such a short space of time my head is spinning!

I'm just opining... thinking aloud really.

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I understand what you're saying and perhaps listing kit might be a interpreted as being hierarchical to new people starting irrespective of the true intentions of the owner. One thing I would say is at least you were honest enough to share your feelings on the matter.

I certainly agree where imaging is concerned that listing equipment should almost be mandatory because of the technicalities involved and certainly saves on supplementary questions having to be asked. One definite advantage to any new person starting is to observe what people are using as evidence that it must be at least reliable. It would be easy to assume that most of us are in fact breeding the NEQ6 Mount given the numbers that are present here! :):D I have read on more than one occasion, when a new person felt they almost needed to apologise for wanting to by pass the Skywatcher 130/150 initiation and cut straight through to a 10" or 12" scope - this has always been met by my personal confirmation that anyone should buy what they like because there is no such thing as a beginner scope only one that's fit for purpose.

I spent over a year researching and looking through scopes and binoculars to help me build a list of what I would like and in the order that I want them. I was given a 4" reflector which taught me how to observe manually, understand the importance of a rigid mount and about the virtues and the curse of decent eyepieces (they are moorish!:):D) No matter what kit you have, it won't tell you the name of the constellations, the NGC number etc, whether the objects are gravitationally linked and all the great mountainous amounts of data, facts, figures and trivia because that's down to the reading and by talking with others and that's something that anyone can do and is not dependent on having a scope .

Clear skies

James

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i list mine as sometimes others have questions

my only status is right at the bottom due to "comments" passed way back when.

i had been smooth talked, or it seems that way, red wine was mentioned :) ...............i try to forget :)

Edited by nicnac

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I think I have been convinced that, on balance, it is a good idea to list equipment if it is helping people. However, I remain a little alarmed by the proportion of chatter on here that relates to equipment and I do find it off-putting. The science of astronomy is what really motivates me but it often seems to be absent. I suppose, to a large extent, newbie's like myself are to blame with the standard "what telescope" type questions.

I'm a clarinetist and I find a similar obsession with 'set-ups' which I find even more annoying. A poor player will sound poor whatever instrument they pick up!

I'm very tempted to start listing fake equipment though... SC-32" (mod) 'Caroline'

I was prepared to let this by as a joke but on rereading this thread I'm not sure I can. You want to sneer at people because they list there equipment. that's your perogative but don't ascribe those base emotions to other people. So you're not materialistic well I'm glad for you. Me I've wanted a telescope since I was small finally I managed to get a little money for myself and bought the only thing I've ever wanted. Its taken me 45 years to do it and yes I'm proud of my little scope.

Some people like I myself had trouble getting to grips with their new equipment and were helped out by the wonderful people on this site who put up with our silly questions and educated us on many aspects of astronomy. Ive learned about seeing, transparancy, optics to some extent all serious scientific subjects. since getting my telescope, I have had to learn about photography, electronics, computers and of course astronomy science isn't a niche its a way of explaining everything it overlaps everywhere. When people ask how do I use this equipment its the start of a journey of scientific exploration for them. I for one don't belittle them for not wanting to discuss the physics and mathematics if they become interested in those there are other forums more suited than the beginners one. I for one would have been put off astronomy if the first thing they had told me was I need a physics and mathematics degree.

If you want incredibly detailed and esoteric discussion there are plenty who can and do enjoy it. Me I'm not that bright and consequently I am quite happy to give the little practical knowledge I have gained from my own experience and knowledge I have gained from people I trust here. I may not be standing on the shoulders of giants but certainly I can stand a little taller because of the people here who have taken the trouble to help with my education. I said in one of my posts here a desire to learn is all that is required and for me so it is. I don't sneer at you because you don't have a telescope. for most of my life neither have I. I also don't expect to be sneered at because I do own a telescope. I am not materialistic I've never had enough to be that. Anyway rant over I apologise for the illiteracy its a combination of old computer keyboard, poor schooling and stupidity. but I hope you got the gist of what I meant

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i think everybody who shares this hobby is passionate about it, their equipment is their "window to wonders".

i love my kit and i will always have it and i do endevour to answer anyones questions about the set up i have.

i will admit to being proud of my set up though

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If you don't like the signatures,or at the very least viewing them, you can always turn them off in your settings!

Steve

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Wow, lots more posts!

I actually think there is a great deal of consensus here. For instance, I did say that discussion of kit is particularly helpful for beginners and acknowledged that listing equipment has led to many people being helped. Indeed, I have also noted that I remain struck by how helpful people on this board are. Without wishing to sound too cheesy, it is trully inspiring.

@rowan46: I think your post makes a great deal of sense and I totally take your point that learning about kit is a valuable journey of its own. However, I think it is unfair to suggest that I have "sneered" at people (and perhaps you don't quite mean that). It just strikes me that the proportion of chatter about equipment in comparison to passionate chatter about astronomy seems a bit skewed. I don't want esoteric discussion, I'd just like to understand the observable universe a bit better. At the moment, I feel I have gained a great deal of knowledge about mounts, apertures and about how long I need to save to enter into astrophotography (all useful information) but very little about the night sky. Or perhaps the journey taken in astronomy is more important than the destination?

And finally yes, I'm materialistic and am *very* jealous of your telescope! :)

Hope that makes sense. I can be a little irreverent at times but I mean no harm!

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Wow, lots more posts!

I actually think there is a great deal of consensus here. For instance, I did say that discussion of kit is particularly helpful for beginners and acknowledged that listing equipment has led to many people being helped. Indeed, I have also noted that I remain struck by how helpful people on this board are. Without wishing to sound too cheesy, it is trully inspiring.

@rowan46: I think your post makes a great deal of sense and I totally take your point that learning about kit is a valuable journey of its own. However, I think it is unfair to suggest that I have "sneered" at people (and perhaps you don't quite mean that). It just strikes me that the proportion of chatter about equipment in comparison to passionate chatter about astronomy seems a bit skewed. I don't want esoteric discussion, I'd just like to understand the observable universe a bit better. At the moment, I feel I have gained a great deal of knowledge about mounts, apertures and about how long I need to save to enter into astrophotography (all useful information) but very little about the night sky. Or perhaps the journey taken in astronomy is more important than the destination?

And finally yes, I'm materialistic and am *very* jealous of your telescope! :)

Hope that makes sense. I can be a little irreverent at times but I mean no harm!

I'm over it now, but may I suggest if you want to discuss the observable universe, ask the question thats what I do. And yes the journey is more important than the destination we can only ever learn a little. consequently the destination of ultimate knowledge can never be reached because that would require infinite time

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