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General Astronomy >> General Observing and Astronomy

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csrlice12
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Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: YetAnotherHobby]
      #5521117 - 11/15/12 12:17 PM

I put to you that you are the opposite of an astro-gear junkie. You're more into the observing then the acqusistion of equipment. Good for you. While equipment is nice, its eyeball to eyepiece that counts.

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cheapersleeper
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 01/22/10

Loc: Sachse TX
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5521131 - 11/15/12 12:23 PM

Despite my general protestations that one does not need to have premium equipment to observer well, I do strongly suspect that general annoyance may be lower with really good equipment. In fact, I have a good mind to fire the guy who builds most of my equipment. Of course, if I do that, I will have nothing to occupy my time when it's cloudy.

B


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EddWen
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 04/26/08

Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5521208 - 11/15/12 01:15 PM

Observing nature, from the cosmos to snails in the back yard when it is raining, is enjoyable to me.

I have a considerable equipment list to do this. But my equipment is not a necessary requirement. Here is an example of my using the least expensive telescope I have to gather some memorable observations:

http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbthreads/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/4675600/page...

At the other end of the spectrum, my grand-daughter loves to use my cobbled together, old, no-name Japanese microscope with an old video camera scavenged from a prototype endoscope, to look at whatever she finds in the yard or street gutter.


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FarrOut
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 02/24/05

Loc: Tampa
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5521312 - 11/15/12 02:15 PM

Quote:

Despite my general protestations that one does not need to have premium equipment to observer well, I do strongly suspect that general annoyance may be lower with really good equipment. In fact, I have a good mind to fire the guy who builds most of my equipment. Of course, if I do that, I will have nothing to occupy my time when it's cloudy.

B




I reminds me of a saying about golf and NASCAR.
A a good observer can see more with marginal equipment than another can see with excellent equipment.


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cheapersleeper
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 01/22/10

Loc: Sachse TX
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: FarrOut]
      #5521343 - 11/15/12 02:30 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Despite my general protestations that one does not need to have premium equipment to observer well, I do strongly suspect that general annoyance may be lower with really good equipment. In fact, I have a good mind to fire the guy who builds most of my equipment. Of course, if I do that, I will have nothing to occupy my time when it's cloudy.

B




I reminds me of a saying about golf and NASCAR.
A a good observer can see more with marginal equipment than another can see with excellent equipment.




I don't disagree with that sentiment. The question is, after that guy drives that car or uses those sticks and does better than someone else can do with better equipment, does he also end up saying "Dang, that was frustrating driving that junk!" I suspect they would feel that way and that is what I am talking about.

B


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csrlice12
Postmaster
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Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5521433 - 11/15/12 03:29 PM

"A good observer can see more with marginal equipment than another can see with excellent equipment."

But give a good oberver excellent equipment..........


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Paco_Grande
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 07/14/12

Loc: Banana Republic of California
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5521462 - 11/15/12 03:47 PM

Quote:

The question is, after that guy drives that car or uses those sticks and does better than someone else can do with better equipment, does he also end up saying "Dang, that was frustrating driving that junk!" I suspect they would feel that way and that is what I am talking about.





Practice gratitude. It will bring happiness to life.


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FirstSight
Duke of Deneb
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Reged: 12/26/05

Loc: Raleigh, NC
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: FarrOut]
      #5521830 - 11/15/12 08:03 PM

Quote:


A a good observer can see more with marginal equipment than another can see with excellent equipment.




Galileo is an exellent example illustrating both the truth and the limitations of that statement.
- Consider how much he got out of a relatively primitive 30mm refractor capable of magnifying but 30x with an extremely narrow field of view!
- OTOH consider how immensely much more he would have certainly got out of a Televue NP101 on a solid tripod and undriven alt-az mount with a full set of Ethos eyepieces and a 2x Powermate to work with!

Observing skill and experience certainly does powerfully enhance what can be obtained with any given set of equipment, but likewise quality equipment certainly does powerfully enhance what can be obtained with observing skill and experience. It's a mutual feedback loop, although getting beyond just a superficial threshold of value from any given set of observing equipment does depend on the extent of skill and experience brought to it. Galileo's situation illustrates the converse as well: the limitations of one's equipment can limit what even a skilled observer can extract from it, take Galileo's uncertainty over what the true nature of Saturn's "handles" was for but one example.

Edited by FirstSight (11/15/12 08:47 PM)


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wky46
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 12/12/05

Loc: west Ky.
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: FirstSight]
      #5521846 - 11/15/12 08:11 PM

Like a drug addict chasing the feeling they got with their first buzz is kinda like me chasing that first buzz I got when I viewed Saturn for the first time many years ago through a cheap 60mm refractor. Never felt anything like that since, but I'm still chasing.... maybe one day

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galexand
sage
*****

Reged: 07/10/12

Loc: Bloomington Indiana
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5521976 - 11/15/12 09:41 PM

I love gizmos, don't get me wrong (I'm shopping for my first refractor). But I'm with GOLGO13...the only thing that makes me jealous or insecure in this hobby is my awful skies. Even compared to the same urban site a couple months ago, getting out the telescope lately is disappointing. I've never even been to a dark sky site with my scope, but someday I want to see some of these galaxies! I don't need to see the dust lanes, I'd be happy just to be able to see the arms at all (M31 is just a circle in my skies). And the way the skies are lately, even some of the open clusters (like M37) are hard to appreciate.

But you know there was that one time, just a couple weeks ago, at the end of a long night of poor seeing suddenly everything was just-so and I got a flawless view of Jupiter at 125x.


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GOLGO13
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 11/05/05

Loc: St. Louis area
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: galexand]
      #5522054 - 11/15/12 10:30 PM

Galexand,

We should get a cloudynights star party setup sometime in southern Missouri. That would be about 7 hours away for you though...still, that's not too bad. Actually you should have some fairly decent skies south of you.

I had a friend who invited me a lot to dark skies. But now he observes on the other side of Missouri (about 3-4 hours from me). So I have no dark sky hookups right now. I have some friends who live in semi-dark skies. but I really don't want to bother them. I may do so sometime if conditions are really good.

Really, even semi-dark skies (say orange/yellow on cleardarksky.com) can make a gigantic difference. Of course if you get to perfection like the skies out west, an 80mm apo would probably be enough to make you happy


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CounterWeight
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Palo alto, CA.
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: GOLGO13]
      #5522154 - 11/16/12 12:11 AM

I came here to ask about imaging with my C11 and CGE.... and to ask about refractors... and I guess I've $cratched that itch. I've learned a lot about gear during my absence (~2002 to 2008), there's great folks that will help you spend or save as much as you want or is realistic for the desired objective.

As far as the observing reports and comparative reporting, I take much of it with a grain of sand, but I do read it. As already mentioned, nothing better than ep time on whatever you have - well maybe one thing... and that is seeing conditions whatever your LP level and habits.

There were things I wasn't happy about before I came here and joined in and started posting. I am a lot happier now, far more confident in what I can do with my 'gear' in many ways, but possibly much poorer for actual savings in the bank. One thing about nice gear that you sacrifice for, you want to use it! Cloudyopolis is not a place I recommend... so the unhappiness continues in ways. Net summed I'm grateful, and impressed at what the CN presence / community on the net has to offer


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bassplayer142
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/03/11

Loc: Michigan
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: YetAnotherHobby]
      #5522215 - 11/16/12 02:30 AM

Simple human nature. You've tasted the forbidden fruit and like everyone else, feel you need more. By no means is astronomy the only hobby that has this problem, but it is amplified as opposed to some other hobbies.

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cheapersleeper
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 01/22/10

Loc: Sachse TX
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: bassplayer142]
      #5522219 - 11/16/12 02:42 AM

Quote:

Simple human nature. You've tasted the forbidden fruit and like everyone else, feel you need more. By no means is astronomy the only hobby that has this problem, but it is amplified as opposed to some other hobbies.




But I am still happily playing guitars I acquired in the 1980s...

The thing is that in THIS hobby, there are quantifiable objective differences between pieces of equipment. In many other hobbies, the differences are very subjective.

B


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star drop
Snowed In
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Reged: 02/02/08

Loc: Snow Plop, WNY
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5522618 - 11/16/12 10:40 AM

I came here to ask ONE question about the Paracorr and now I cannot seem to locate the exit. The one question has cost me a new Paracorr and three ES100° eyepieces. Bad for my wallet but good for Astronomics.

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csa/montana
Den Mama
*****

Reged: 05/14/05

Loc: montana
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: star drop]
      #5522656 - 11/16/12 10:54 AM

Quote:

now I cannot seem to locate the exit.




Sorry; CN keeps all exits locked.


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Pinbout
Postmaster
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Reged: 02/22/10

Loc: nj
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5522745 - 11/16/12 11:38 AM

Quote:

The thing is that in THIS hobby, there are quantifiable objective differences between pieces of equipment.





are you not totally happy with your 12in mirror? did you ke test it on a bright star?

just lay a piece of tape across half the focuser and defocus vegas and see as you move it thru focus the ke spins. you can also look for the mirror to null, totally grey out or do you get a donut figure as you go thru focus.

also make a donut mask to mask off the outer 1/2" all around the primary then see how jupiter looks and are the star more pointy pointy, maybe you have a edge issue.

do you want a ronchi eyepiece? have an extra one I could send you since your such a good friend.



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csrlice12
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Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: FirstSight]
      #5522803 - 11/16/12 12:09 PM

Quote:

Quote:


A a good observer can see more with marginal equipment than another can see with excellent equipment.




Galileo is an exellent example illustrating both the truth and the limitations of that statement.
- Consider how much he got out of a relatively primitive 30mm refractor capable of magnifying but 30x with an extremely narrow field of view!
- OTOH consider how immensely much more he would have certainly got out of a Televue NP101 on a solid tripod and undriven alt-az mount with a full set of Ethos eyepieces and a 2x Powermate to work with!

Observing skill and experience certainly does powerfully enhance what can be obtained with any given set of equipment, but likewise quality equipment certainly does powerfully enhance what can be obtained with observing skill and experience. It's a mutual feedback loop, although getting beyond just a superficial threshold of value from any given set of observing equipment does depend on the extent of skill and experience brought to it. Galileo's situation illustrates the converse as well: the limitations of one's equipment can limit what even a skilled observer can extract from it, take Galileo's uncertainty over what the true nature of Saturn's "handles" was for but one example.




The thing to remember about Galileo is that he was one of the first to explore the universe. He basicallly started out where all of us do; just standing in awe of the night sky. He didn't know where things were at, he had no guide, no star atas (at least none he didn't create), no digital setting circles. And the only way he had to view an object a second, third, or fourth time was to "get in the general area and scan the sky). We have it so much easier then Galileo ever did. And its all thanks to him and those like him (Keppler, Messier, Sagan, etc..)


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bassplayer142
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/03/11

Loc: Michigan
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: cheapersleeper]
      #5522916 - 11/16/12 01:20 PM

I don't think instruments have changed too much over the years. If you look for vintage instruments they are very expensive and it isn't always because they are collectors items. Those old fender jazz basses just sound great! There's no comparison of a new quality telescope compared to "most" vintage scopes. You either have quality optics and aperture or you don't.

I also thinks there's a location distinction that hasn't been mentioned here. Its hard to judge how seeing is everywhere when I've only ever observed in Michigan. Sometimes people can mistake reports because sky conditions are sub par.


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JayinUT
I'm not Sleepy
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Reged: 09/19/08

Loc: Utah
Re: I may have been happier before Cloudy Nights new [Re: bassplayer142]
      #5522953 - 11/16/12 01:50 PM

This is just my visual observing creed. Please feel free to disregard it. I've owned a variety of telescopes and I have to say, that some have performed better than others as I the observer have gained experience. The key to this hobby isn't the equipment, its getting out and using it on whatever you want to observe. It is slowing down, not rushing through objects. Look for details, note them in a digital recorder or on paper/observing form. Come back to the object on a different night or a later time and see if it is different. Sketch if you want to capture what your seeing. In the end, the eyepiece, the scope won't matter. Some of my favorite memories are from using my XT8 scope from a long time ago. Today I do have a Zambuto, I have a wonderful structure in my 14" DobStuff dob and guess what, I am content. I don't have aperture fever, I have found what works for me. I sold my 1/2 in my 20" and for eyepieces, I am now content. Nothing to get, nothing to prove. So, don't compare, don't get caught into the black hole of eyepiece, telescope and equipment until YOU are ready to upgrade and you want to upgrade for a specific reason. Fads come and go on this site. Again, find what works for you and then just enjoy reading. It is fun just to read not to think. I like CloudyNights for the reading more than anything.

Last, to make a major point with me, it doesn't matter what you use, but those who use what they have the most, will see the most and learn the most. So get out and use whatever you have and use it on a regular basis (whatever regular is for you).


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