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ETX 90 like soptting scope?

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#1 curiosidad

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 05:51 PM

Hello,
Anyone use this ETX 90 optical tube like a spotting scope for day birding?
Good results?
Thanks

#2 jgraham

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 10:08 PM

It should work fine on a good tripod. I've used the Orion 90mm tabletop Mak as a spotting scope and it worked very well.

#3 moynihan

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Posted 08 December 2012 - 09:21 AM

I have used an ETX 90 OTA as a spotting scope, when i needed high magnification and a good stand off distance. Found it to work well.

#4 dengwer

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Posted 08 December 2012 - 09:08 PM

We take photos through my wife's ETX90 out of our car window using a sony cybershot and 40mm eyepiece. Here is one example of hundreds of pics.

#5 dengwer

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Posted 08 December 2012 - 09:18 PM

oops now to upload photo

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#6 Geo.

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 12:21 PM

I keep one at the lake on a DS2000 mount for use as a spotter and observing. The 45 deg. erect image diagonal is best for spotting.

#7 moynihan

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 01:48 PM

oops now to upload photo


Very nice

#8 FeynmanFan

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 02:15 PM

They make great spotting scopes. I use mine as such when target shooting. If you think night time thermals are bad, try looking across 100 yards of sun-baked prairie!

#9 seeindoubles

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 02:10 AM

Mine works great for birding. Just took this shot of the Western Tanager that hangs out in the backyard today. Used my Canon EOS with remote release through my PC.

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#10 cpsTN

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 09:32 AM

I have a SkyWatcher 90mm Mak (1250mm FL) and Orion's F2-HD tripod and I use it with a 25mm EP (50x) or a 40mm EP (32x) for birding, plane watching, etc. Works great. This is the same one as the Orion Apex 90 I used to have. The ETX (used to own as well) should work better due to better optics.

#11 REC

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 10:20 AM

Yep, have mine now for 15 yrs. and still works great! Keep it on a lightweight tripod all the time ready to check out the birds ans also have a solar filter in it for sunspots.

Bob

#12 Mike Cook

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 02:25 PM

I've used my ETX 125PE to bird watch. :) Focusing can be slow, spinning the focus knob quite a bit but I have a lot of fun with it.

#13 highertheflyer

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 06:07 PM

Can one show us your camera to ETX setup?
I have a number of these and would like to capture views like yours.
Jim

#14 seeindoubles

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 12:02 AM

I use a Meade rear cell adapter that I purchased from OPT for $19.95. I have attached a photo here. It screws onto the threads of the sub-diameter rear port. Once installed it allows use of standard SCT accessories including photo adapters, eyepiece holders and even off axis guiders. For photos I use a SCT prime focus adapter coupled to my camera. For a slightly wider field of view I thread on my Celestron focal reducer first, then couple the prime focus adapter to the back of that. You gain perhaps 15% extra field of view that way on the ETX. The Tanager photo I posted earlier was from about 45 feet with just the SCT prime focus adapter.

#15 seeindoubles

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 12:44 AM

Attached is a shot of my setup showing the Celestron F6.3 focal reducer threaded to the ETX rear cell adapter and the SCT prime focus adapter attached to the rear of the focal reducer, coupled to my Canon EOS XS. This combination gives maybe 15% more field of view with the ETX90 than without the reducer. I use this for birding shots and also used the same combination to record the Venus transit last May. For quick and dirty I just thread on the prime focus adapter and the camera.

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#16 Ekyprotic

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 12:44 AM

Thanks for uploading these images! Can this combo also be used for wide field astro work? I have the Celestron 6.3 reducer I use with my 8 SE, can I use it similarly (with an SCT correct image diagonal) on my ETX 90? One problem I can see would be to view targets near the zenith, I dont think the rear view port has enough clearance for the base of the mount.

#17 seeindoubles

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 10:31 AM

Maybe snapshots of the moon (or sun with filter). The drive isn't good enough for long exposure photography-too much periodic error and too unsteady. However you can use a Canon EOS camera using a utility called Backyard EOS to record webcam movies of the planets with it with some success. Even with the jerky drive it will still work as you can keep only the frames where the image was steady. I was able to do a few decent shots of the Venus tranit last year in this manner. Wide field visual work could be done with the appropriate SCT adapter and eyepeices at the camera port though. I am actually planning to use my OTA for a guide scope as soon as the mount rings arrive.

#18 seeindoubles

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 10:36 AM

This isn't birding but does demonstrate the capabilities of my setup. This shot of the Venus transit last year was made with this setup plus a full aperture solar filter. This is one frame of a webcam movie made running Backyard EOS which allows you to use the Live-View feed to record webcam movies, even if your Canon model cannot normally record video.

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#19 *skyguy*

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 11:57 AM

I have an ETX-125 and a very handy photography accessory to own is the Zhumell 8-24mm zoom eyepiece ($60). It has a male T-thread located under the rubber eye guard that will screw into any DSLR or camera that has a T-thread adapter. Also, the zoom (magnification) can be adjusted on-the-fly without changing the camera's orientation. The posted image shows a water tower 2 miles away with my DSLR attached at prime focus and then with eyepiece projection using the zoom from 24mm to 8mm.

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#20 Ekyprotic

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 10:31 PM

what's the longest exposure you can do if you use the table top tripod in equatorial mode with the etx 90? 30 seconds?

#21 seeindoubles

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 12:11 AM

Wow, that's pretty slick! Now I have an excuse to purchase yet one more astro-accessory :jump:

#22 seeindoubles

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 12:37 AM

Probably no more than one or two seconds, maybe ten. That is why I resorted to webcam photography, which has actually worked quite well with the ETX. BTW, this is the original ETX model that had just a simple clock drive with no electronic fine adjustments available. You probably could do better with one of the newer computerized ETX90 or 125 models.

#23 Ekyprotic

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 01:17 AM

Yea I bought the ETX 90 ASTRO M model (I think that's what it is called lol- also called ETX 90 RA ?) from Classifieds awhile back. I have a DSI PRO II and an LPI, which would work with this model...... but since I heard it wasn't upgradeable to the computerized version I went ahead and bought accessories which are supposed to make it compatible with the Nexstar SE mount. I have yet to get around to deforking the OTA and putting it on that mount. I hope I'll get better results with imaging with it on the SE mount than I've gotten so far with my 8" SE (an 8" OTA is just a bit too heavy for that mount.) One thing that I do like is that the 8" + 6.3 FR is very close to the ETX 90 in focal length.

#24 seeindoubles

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 01:29 AM

I used my ETX for quite a while on a Synta EQ5GT (Skywatcher) mount. I just bolted a Vixen dovetail to the tripod base on the main tube of the ETX90 and it worked great. I finally sold the Synta mount and remounted the OTA on the orignal forks after disassembly and some tuning. I plan to disassemble the fork mount again and build in my own RA clutch-there is room to do it. If it works, it will allow the drive to work more smoothly and with more flexibility than it was originally designed for. I will post those mods later for folks to benefit from too!

#25 Ekyprotic

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 02:20 AM

Thanks I would love to do that myself! There is some artistic elegance in the original mount that I really like. I'd feel sad to defork it from that mount.






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