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Celestron Nexstar 11 vs Celestron VX 8" SCT

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#1 tobility

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 12:38 AM

This is my first post here, so go easy on me.

I recently ordered a Celestron VX 8" SCT. My primary focus is astrophotography, but to be clear, I'm very much a beginner. Secondary, of course, if viewing (myself, my children, and the occasional sidewalk astronomy outing). The VX 8" is on backorder, and while browsing my local craigslist board, I came across a Celestron Nexstar 11 that is up for sale. Asking price is $1600.00, which is the same price as the VX 8". Now, obviously, the 11 is the larger of the two scopes, and my understanding is, it's pretty amazing in the imaging department. That being said, I'm a bit concerned about the GoTo mount. I know that I can either, a) purchase a GEM, or b) purchase a wedge Nexstar 11. So really, at this point, I'm looking for some friendly advice, thoughts, suggestions, etc.

Original Nexstar C11 GPS
Excellent optics
Carbon Fiber OTA
FASTAR compatible
HC & MC upgraded
Heavy duty tripod with vibration dampers
Always stored covered in the living room
40mm, 26mm, 9.7mm, 2X Barlow
Excellent GOTO accuracy
Original shipping boxes and manual

#2 Thanatos78621

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 02:44 AM

A smaller scope is easier to setup and also makes learning much easier (just my opinion). I'd hate to see someone get a telescope that's too large, get discouraged and box it back up or sell it.

The NS11GPS is a great scope for visual and can take some amazing photos with a short exposure imaging on the standard mount, though a wedge or a GEM will help considerably for long exposure. Its a big and heavy telescope thanks to the OTA being pretty much always attached to the forks. I can move it myself but its recommended to have a spotter when putting it on the tripod. With that said, I had no qualms about buying my NS11GPS and selling my 8SE right after.

Either way, here's wishing you lots of clear nights.

#3 MikeBOKC

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 08:42 AM

The extra aperture matters considerably for visual, but not so much for AP. For AP a big percentage of the advantage is in the mount, adn the VX is probably the minimum you would need for exposures beyond 30 seconds. Lots of people do excellent AP work with mid-sized or even small refractors. The 11 would br a great visual scope. For AP you could do just fine with the VX mount and a refractor. Just remember that AP is a cash sink . . . cameras, adaptors, processing software, ad infinitum.

#4 Bob Griffiths

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 12:53 PM

I already answered your question and the one about the CR6 on another forum...both yesterday...

But I wanted to welcome you over here also because while the other forum is darn good especially for beginner...Cloudy nights is the best place to get the right answers...period...

Bob G.

#5 Escher

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 01:47 PM

If your end goal is AP, and assuming you have factored in all that that entails in regard to expense as previously mentioned - then the 11 is the way to go for one reason... Hyperstar.

If you get serious about AP - the Hyperstar is amazing and will allow you to image with much shorter subs - like under 1 minute subs... You may not even need a wedge...

The reason for the 11 and not an 8 is that, while both will be F2 with Hyperstar, the 8 is too small to accommodate a DSLR so you have to use a dedicated imaging cam - which will cost quite a bit more. With the 11, you can get a modded Canon and be in very good shape for imaging.

#6 tobility

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 05:27 PM

Thank you Bob, and Escher, MikeBOKC, and Thanatos78621. There is an amazing wealth of knowledge here, and I want to let you all know how much I appreciate the information. As I told Bob (on the other forum), I picked up the N11GPS for $1500, and I can't wait to take her for a spin! Of course, I live in Seattle, so may be a while :) I look forward to being an active part of this amazing community...

#7 Thanatos78621

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Posted 03 March 2013 - 07:46 AM

NS11GPS is a great telescope and I think you'll enjoy it quite a bit.

#8 Dr.Don

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 12:27 PM

I am considering getting the C11 VX to add to my old C8. It seems annoying that I can't get simple answers about exactly what comes with the C11 VX and how much options, like GPS, cost from resellers. Do I really care about the GPS if I use my scope only in my yard but have to move it around?
How important is leveling the scope each time when I want to do some AP on up to a 1 minute or so time scale?

#9 cn register 5

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 03:39 PM

There's no need to bother about GPS with a VX mount that you are operating from pone position.

Levelling is not critical, getting it so it looks level should be good enough. The All Star Polar alignment will get the polar alignment good enough.

To comment on the original post, a NS11 is a great scope but will be a challenge for a beginner to astro photography because it's got such a long focal length. This makes guiding to get good images difficult. An AVX, especially with a shorter focal length OTA, such as one of the 80mm ED scopes, will be far better. I speak as one who has both a NS11 and an AVX. The NS11 is getting a bit neglected.

Chris

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#10 mdzarate

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 08:17 PM

If your end goal is AP, and assuming you have factored in all that that entails in regard to expense as previously mentioned - then the 11 is the way to go for one reason... Hyperstar.

If you get serious about AP - the Hyperstar is amazing and will allow you to image with much shorter subs - like under 1 minute subs... You may not even need a wedge...

The reason for the 11 and not an 8 is that, while both will be F2 with Hyperstar, the 8 is too small to accommodate a DSLR so you have to use a dedicated imaging cam - which will cost quite a bit more. With the 11, you can get a modded Canon and be in very good shape for imaging.


I already own a Canon 5D Markii, I am guessing that would be a very good camera to use?

#11 jerryyyyy

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 10:24 AM

I have done a lot of imaging with a C8 and you can take plenty of pictures BUT you are going to need a good mount. I bought an Atlas, which costs more than the C8... about $1400 new and I would get a new one. The C8 is very hard to guide without the focal reducer and has a very narrow field of view... about 40' wide. With the FR it is about 60'.

The C8 only weighs 12lbs, so it is easy to move about.

My new scope is a Takahashi 180ED which is f2.8 and will allow me to take wide angle narrow band pictures. When I was thinking of moving up I considered the C11 and it will run on an Atlas, but the narrow field of view stopped me.

Anyway, you can look at some of my pictures on astrobin and see what you will get with a C8 over a couple years of working on guiding and getting a CCD camera to replace a DSLR. That is another $$$ issue...






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