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Difference between 130P & 150P visually?


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Hi Fellow stargazers

I am very new to this game and am trying to decide on my first scope. I already have a thread running with a few questions to help me decide on my choice and some of you guys have been very helpful. I was all set to get the Sky watcher Reflector 130P EQ2 when it was suggested to me to look at the 150. I liked what I saw and being a typical bloke bigger is better etc.

Thing is what is the difference between the two when you look through the eyepiece? I understand that having a bigger mirror gives you more light capture hence seeing fainter more distant objects (am I right?) But is there really all that much difference between the two.

Being a complete novice I don't really know what to expect as have not looked through a scope like this before.On this forum along with the net in general you can find pictures taken with the 150 and 130 and they always look fantastic but I know these have been run though software and have long exposures etc.

So would a novice like me looking at Jupiter using the same magnification lens see much of a difference?

Same with a DSO say the (sorry I don't know the name) spiral galaxy, would I actually make out the spiral with the naked eye or would it just be a small faint smudge with no real detail

Ideally if anyone could steer me towards some photos taken as you see through the eyepiece so to speak, even better. Its something that I believe would help all us newbies to the hobby at least this way we do not get disappointed when we don't resolve Jupiter like some of the photos we see on here.

Budget is a big issue for me right now and this is why I ask. 130P with some extra lenses or a 150P with no extras for quite a while. I just can't decide. :)

Thanks for your time.

Edited by Canyouguesswhoitisyet
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There is a difference of course - the 150 gathers 33% more light which will be noticable on deep sky objects, less so on the planets perhaps but the extra potential is still there, when seeing conditions allow.

You might consider yourself a novice now but you won't be for long and you will soon start to appreciate why aperture is so popular !.

Photos will be very misleading - our eyes simply can't compete with what CCD's can capture.

Sketches and drawings done at the eyepiece are more helpful but what you will actually see at the eyepiece will depend on your local viewing conditions and a number of other things.

On galaxies, most are still smudges of light even with a 12" scope. I've seen the spiral structure in M51 at a dark site with a 12" and I believe it's possible with a 10" as well under good conditions. I fear it may be beyond a 5" or 6" scope unless you take it to the top of a mountain in Hawaii !.

One option would be to go for the 130 now to get a taste for using a scope then start saving for an 8" or larger which starts to deliver more satisfying views.

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as an additional for your information, I purchased the SW130 last year, and it is a great scope for starting with. I have found though that after a few uses, I started to realise that the SW150 may have been the better choice, to the point that I am hoping to upgrade in the next couple of months.

Edited by Nillchill
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as an additional for your information, I purchased the SW130 last year, and it is a great scope for starting with. I have found though that after a few uses, I started to realise that the SW150 may have been the better choice, to the point that I am hoping to upgrade in the next couple of months.

After a few uses ?!?! how limiting have you found the 130 then? for observing? or because you want to do photography.

Thanks for posting

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From what I have gleaned so far the bigger mirror the more light you get the further out you can see. A 130 to 150 gives performance wise 33% extra as some one has already said and you were aware of. Going up to a 200P is adding another 40% of light on from the 150 and great for DSO so I have learnt from the write ups.

Conversely the mounts and tripods that they come with grow in size to handle the weight of the scope.

As I've been told going from a 130 to a 150 will increase weight, size even though it may look very similar in a photo the actual size is greater being 20mm wider.

You can purchase tripods and mounts separate and add the scope at a later time but it would be impractical to upgrade the scope without the mount and tripod.

If you are thinking of Astro-imaging the 150P is a better starting place than the 130 is. If you trying to slide a new scope past the wife you might get away with it if the new scope and old one are the same colour.....

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After a few uses ?!?! how limiting have you found the 130 then? for observing? or because you want to do photography.

Thanks for posting

dont get me wrong here, the scope is excellent, Its just that for me personally I am am having to push its magnification ability as far as possible to get the images that I want, and I believe a SW150 or even a SW200 would suit what I want to do.

I stated the SW150 as my choice as I was fortunate to upgrade my mount to an EQ3-2, and since the SW200 may be pushing this Mount a little too far ( feedback from other members in here) I think the SW150 is the stage to go to

However that said the SW130 has given me some amazing views of the moon, planets and some Neb's . I have not used a DSLR with my scope yet, most of my experiments have been with Web cams, both focally and afocally fitted

just for you to know also, the calculation of the light gathering is purely a comparison of the cross sectional area of the apertures. ie the amount of light that is physically able to pass through the aperture.

when you say you cannot get an image in your Camera,is this after long exposure or just through the camera viewfinder?

Edited by Nillchill
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Starting out you wont notice the difference, ie your first impressions with a 130 wouldn't be any different with a 150. When you have some experience it may be that the 150 helps you see some of the DSO's slightly better. The amount of extra light gathered is a bit misleading in reality. Either would be great to start with.

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Starting out you wont notice the difference, ie your first impressions with a 130 wouldn't be any different with a 150. When you have some experience it may be that the 150 helps you see some of the DSO's slightly better. The amount of extra light gathered is a bit misleading in reality. Either would be great to start with.

Great advise there.

Go for the cheapest. Whatever one you choose you"ll be wanting an upgrade if you enjoy it.:)

If you don't enjoy it you won't have spent so much.

Regards Steve

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Just want to support what has been said I bought a 110mm then 130mm then 150mm and now a 250mm scope.

From 110 to 130 and to 150 were each slight but noticable improvements. The 250 was a bigger improvement but even the brightest galaxies are still grey smudges just slightly brighter...

Mark

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Thank you all for taking the time to reply. All very helpful and interesting. My head tells me 130 heart says 150. I really have to watch what I spend so based on your feedback I think I will try the 130p and if I take to the hobby I will upgrade. I am thinking to just buy much better lenses to improve my viewing.

I ma glad Bish and others have pointed out that when starting out I would not really notice the difference.

At least I can now finally make the decision to buy. I have been thinking this over for over 2 months now!

Once again thanks.

I would still think that for other newbies untouched pictures in an as you see it format would really be helpful. Saying that the link that NillChill gave earlier in the post was good.

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Try this site

http://www.12dstring.me.uk/fov.htm

it will give you a good idea on the differences between scopes

I have a 130p and while I love the scope and have had some great views, I can't believe the so called views available with my scope in the FOV calculator. I set the FOV calculator for the 130p with x2 barlow and spc900 webcam and it showed some unbelievable images of M51. http://www.12dstring.me.uk/images/messier/large/m51.jpg

I don't think they are possible. Are they?

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I have a 130p and while I love the scope and have had some great views, I can't believe the so called views available with my scope in the FOV calculator. I set the FOV calculator for the 130p with x2 barlow and spc900 webcam and it showed some unbelievable images of M51. http://www.12dstring.me.uk/images/messier/large/m51.jpg

I don't think they are possible. Are they?

When I was messing with it yesterday I could not understand that if you select Jupiter use a x2 barlow and 9mm eyepiece Jupiter is still really small in the FOV. Yet take as you say M51 using the same barlow and lens the object is in full FOV!

I know that can't be right I know Jupiter is far away but those galaxies are even further.

I took it that if I bought the 130P and looked at Jupiter that this software would be quite accurate as to the size of the image. Am I right?

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the views on that calculator are highly misleading. There is no way you'll get the level of detail on DSOs shown on the screen. Even M31, bright as it is is still very much the grey smudge and I think this is why so many people dip their hand into astro imaging. Planet views shown are a bit more accurate though.

That said, the sense of excitement in seeing any of the well known DSOs is brilliant and although I do some imaging work, my main scope (SW 150PL) is my weapon of choice. I'll be upgrading later this year though as aperture fever has returned.

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Thanks Skybrowser.

I knew the DSOs had to be misleading, shame really as it would have been real nice to see them like that hey. I know the colours our out of the question but a full view filling the eyepiece would be great.

I am luck enough not to have caught aperture fever yet....... need my first aperture to catch it!

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Thanks Skybrowser.

I knew the DSOs had to be misleading, shame really as it would have been real nice to see them like that hey. I know the colours our out of the question but a full view filling the eyepiece would be great.

I am luck enough not to have caught aperture fever yet....... need my first aperture to catch it!

I've seen M51 filling the field of view with it's sprial arms really well defined - but that was using a 20" dobsonian :(

My 10" will show the spiral structure I believe, but I need to take it to a really dark viewing site to achieve that.

I have to say that these online tools that are supposed to given an impression of what objects look like are very misleading with regards to the brigtness, contast and resolution that can be seen - mainly, I suspect, because those aspects are dependant very much on your local oberving conditions and the expereinece of the observer. Looking at sketches made through the eyepiece is a more accurate guide but again, if the observer is very expereinced and observing under excellent conditions, there is every possibility that your views will not duplicate theirs, to start with at any rate.

With regard to the apparent size of objects with a given scope / eyepiece then the online tools are a little more accurate.

I wish they would publish "Health Warnings" with these things - ie: "Your Mileage May Vary" :)

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If you want an idea of what you can see through the eyepice look at sketches on the internet. So put in to google M31 sketch and then go to images and you will see a few and they normally say which scope was used.

I have seen over 300 galaxies through my scope. 90% are very faint such that a casual glance migth not see anything at all. The 10% that are brighter are basically uniform grey smudges, some are oval some are circular, you get pairs and groups but ultimately it is what you are looking at that is amazing not the view itself. If you look at any rose in the garden in summer it looks 1000 times better than any galaxy at the eyepiece but its a rose not a galaxy millions of light years away..

Mark

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When I was messing with it yesterday I could not understand that if you select Jupiter use a x2 barlow and 9mm eyepiece Jupiter is still really small in the FOV. Yet take as you say M51 using the same barlow and lens the object is in full FOV!

I know that can't be right I know Jupiter is far away but those galaxies are even further.

I took it that if I bought the 130P and looked at Jupiter that this software would be quite accurate as to the size of the image. Am I right?

This is true and I also think they are slightly misleading. BUT you need to remember that yes Jupiter is big (compared to Earth) and is relatively close compared to other objects. However M31 and the like are thousands of light years big so they do appear larger in the FOV. The detail it shows you will see is the most misleading.

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Well thanks guys, I have finally took the plunge and just ordered a 130P EQ2 and a Sky watcher light pollution filter from FLO. Where I live the pollution is high so I am hoping that the filter will make a difference :-) (fingers crossed)

I have agonised over the 150P and I think that some members will be a little disappointed after advising me to take the 150 over the 130. It did boil down to cash though, with the 130 I can buy some lenses books and the filter and still be on budget, the 150 would have eaten all that up.

Lets just hope I have the time to use it (first child on the way) and I take to the hobby. I am excited though to have finally made the decision after months of reading and pondering.

I will no doubt be posting more questions soon, like how do I find the moon and so on lol.

Once again a big thanks to you all, I wish you all happy days and dark nights!

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i was in the exact dilemma as you, (i just plumped for a 130p and live in cov, think its just a "cov" thing lol where in cov are you? im in willenhall but the LP hasnt been too bad, and blessed with a southern facing garden, hoping to take it out somewhere soon tho, if you want to meet up on a clear sky night im more than happy to mate, shame yove ordered your scope ild be more than happy to give you a blast then you could of seen the views out of mine, then made a decision.

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Hi GazA

Its a shame you hadnt offered to show me the scope earlier I would have taken you up on it.

What do you think to your 130P?

As for light pollution have you looked on here need-less light pollution

You have to get quite a way out of the city to get some good dark places.

I am up in Eastern Green area. I come through Willenhall everyday on way to work on the Binley ind estate.

I may take you up on that offer of meeting up on a clear sky night. I think I will try and get used to my scope first.

Cheers

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ive only ventured out twice so far (for 1-3hrs) but might get a little outing tonight, i think its a great "little" scope ive seen faint detail on jupiter which im impressed with being as its "out of season" and orion nebula which is great to look and at and pleides is amazing. the eyepieces are pretty good if i am honest, also use the celestron 20mm from my travelscope too, which comes in handy.

am currently devising a plan to attach my iphone to the scope using the starwalk app as im still learning about constellations and what i can look in them.

theres someone on here that lives in baginton or in views in the area that says he gets some good views there. mite venture out one evening, but its finding a good open place.

i reckon i could get a decent early view of saturn if someone chopped that massive tree down 2 doors down! :)

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