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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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hectar
member


Reged: 12/24/12

Loc: Ontario, Canada
Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200
      #5612789 - 01/08/13 09:55 PM

Hello All,
I have been thinking about buying this mount for AP with zenithStar and a dslr. Is it worth 500 bucks? Has any one had auto guided it to improve 0.5 arc second resolution?
Following are the advertised specs:

• 1.25" German equatorial mount
• Payload: 11 lb (5 kg) (excluding counterweight)
• Mount weight: 6.2 lb (2.8 kg)
• Dual-axis servomotor with optical encoder
• Drive motor with 9-speed setting for precise tracking
• Resolution: 0.5 arc second
• Go2NovaTM 8408 controller with Advanced GOTONOVA® GoTo Technology
• Over 59,000 celestial objects
• Low power consumption (8 AA batteries for 16 hours consecutive tracking)
• Vixen-type dovetail saddle
• 2 lb. counterweight included
• 3/8" threads to fit on camera mount
• Standard 1.25 inch heavy-duty stainless steel tripod
• Metal worm & gears
• Guiding Port
• Polar Scope included!

Thanks .


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orlyandico
Postmaster
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Reged: 08/10/09

Loc: Singapore
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: hectar]
      #5612797 - 01/08/13 10:05 PM

the 0.5 arcsecond is some fake specification. it is the resolution per tic of the motor encoder. no relation at all to its real performance.

IMHO the celestron CG5 ASGT for a very similar price is a safer choice for AP with a short refractor. unless the weight of the CG5 is a big issue..


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Astronewb
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 09/19/11

Loc: Connecticut
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: orlyandico]
      #5613481 - 01/09/13 10:48 AM

Hi, this is a nice little mount capable of imaging with lighter loads. (About 8-9 pounds) Here's a link to another forum thread with guided image 10 minutes long. The poster stated he did 15 minutes as well.

http://www.astronomyforum.net/telescope-mounts-forum/149013-smarteq-will-do-4...

Hope the info helps. Note that the mount will have to be modded a bit in the tripod area to eliminate flex..there are threads referring to that as well.

Clear skies,

Paul


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andysea
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 09/03/10

Loc: Seattle, WA
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Astronewb]
      #5614806 - 01/10/13 01:21 AM

I've been looking at the SmartEq for DSLR imaging. Seems like a good portable solution, it would be interesting to see more AP results. The Skymemo is probably more a accurate tracker but it does not have goto or a dec motor.

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hectar
member


Reged: 12/24/12

Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: andysea]
      #5625414 - 01/15/13 11:04 PM

Thanks for the replies guys.
Paul, I wonder if you could post more images here??.. It would sure help. Thanks


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Astronewb
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Reged: 09/19/11

Loc: Connecticut
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: hectar]
      #5625927 - 01/16/13 10:21 AM

Quote:

Thanks for the replies guys.
Paul, I wonder if you could post more images here??.. It would sure help. Thanks



Sure, here's an image of the California Nebula taken with 120 sec subs:

California Nebula by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

Here's M101 at 120 secs:

M101..Borg 60mm by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

David_Wood has a stunning image of M42, 4, 10 minute subs, on the AF forum. I'll see if I can get his permission to post it up here for you.

Cheers,

Paul


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hectar
member


Reged: 12/24/12

Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Astronewb]
      #5627247 - 01/16/13 11:50 PM

They look wonderful!
Thanks for posting them!


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Astronewb
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 09/19/11

Loc: Connecticut
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: hectar]
      #5627758 - 01/17/13 10:19 AM

Quote:

They look wonderful!
Thanks for posting them!



Your welcome, and here's the single 10 minute image taken by David Wood and posted here with his permission:


Dave Woods M42 by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

Just an indication of what the little mount is capable of.

Clear skies,

Paul


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hectar
member


Reged: 12/24/12

Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Astronewb]
      #5628842 - 01/17/13 08:37 PM

Mount sure did the great job. Amazing picture and thanks for posting it!.

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lakeorion
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/03/10

Loc: Lake Orion MI
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: hectar]
      #5666063 - 02/06/13 09:33 PM

I just pushed the button on one. I plan on focusing (no pun intended) on wide angle DSLR shots and hope this is the ticket.

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lakeorion
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/03/10

Loc: Lake Orion MI
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: lakeorion]
      #5669882 - 02/08/13 10:17 PM

AAARRRGGGHHH!

Backordered.


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Raginar
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 10/19/10

Loc: Rapid CIty, SD
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: lakeorion]
      #5669901 - 02/08/13 10:27 PM



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PaulN
member


Reged: 10/12/08

Loc: Massachusetts
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Raginar]
      #5760614 - 03/27/13 03:31 PM

Any know how long the back order may be?

Thanks

Paul


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ourobouros2k2
sage


Reged: 11/10/11

Loc: okc area, oklahoma
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: PaulN]
      #5760712 - 03/27/13 04:17 PM

I have the non-pro version of the SmartEQ and I love it! It's light weight and portability have really put the fun back into astronomy for me. I use it with a coronado PST and an Orion short tube 80. Great tracking with rough polar alignment. Lots and I mean lots of fun to use! Looking forward to the handset update that has an ASPA equivalent alignment routine.

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S.Boerner
sage


Reged: 04/29/10

Loc: Eastern Missouri
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: ourobouros2k2]
      #5760990 - 03/27/13 06:19 PM

From iOptron: They won't be getting a new shipment until the middle of April.

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PaulN
member


Reged: 10/12/08

Loc: Massachusetts
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: S.Boerner]
      #5762579 - 03/28/13 03:16 PM

I know the Pro can use Vixen-style dovetails, but any suggestions as to what brand e,g. Astro-Tech? I want to mount a Canon DSLR. Thanks

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Astronewb
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 09/19/11

Loc: Connecticut
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: PaulN]
      #5762681 - 03/28/13 04:33 PM

Quote:

I know the Pro can use Vixen-style dovetails, but any suggestions as to what brand e,g. Astro-Tech? I want to mount a Canon DSLR. Thanks




For the most part...all Vixen dovetails will work, but you should choose a length to suit the camera/lens combo you are using. If you have a very long telephoto lens, a 7" may allow you to balance better than a 3" for example.

ADM makes a versatile dovetail, with slots and hole spacing to suit almost any setup.

http://admaccessories.com/V_Series_Universal.htm

Hope the info helps and clear skies..

Paul


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PaulN
member


Reged: 10/12/08

Loc: Massachusetts
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Astronewb]
      #5764879 - 03/29/13 02:31 PM

Paul - thank you...that's a good link... I have just have to wait until the mount is shipped. Thanks again.

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Wei
journeyman


Reged: 10/05/09

Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: PaulN]
      #5976194 - 07/17/13 03:21 PM

Found out that the Smarteq pro and ZEQ25 does not work with sky safari at the moment.

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exmedia
sage
*****

Reged: 05/26/13

Loc: Orange County, CA
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Wei]
      #5979404 - 07/19/13 09:09 AM

My unfortunate experience: my SmartEQ was a lemon. Instead of smoothly tracking in RA it would 'jump' to a new position and rock the whole telescope. I sent it back for repair, which they said they'd fixed, then when I got it, it was still doing the same thing. I wasn't at all happy, and iO tech support suggested that it was something I was doing wrong with the mount. Blaming the customer is always a good policy, right? I asked if my purchase price could be applied to an upgrade mount and the tech said he would 'send along the request to my supervisor.' It's been over a month now, and nothing from them. So I have this useless mount and no idea if iOptron is going to do anything about it. Not really an iOptron fan at this point.

Richard


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AbPho
newbie


Reged: 07/22/13

Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: hectar]
      #5988624 - 07/24/13 10:28 PM

Hectar how has the smartEQ been working out for you?

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Barriles
newbie


Reged: 03/15/12

Loc: White Salmon, Washington, USA
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: exmedia]
      #6192538 - 11/13/13 12:07 PM

Any update on your iOptron experience? Thanks

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lakeorion
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/03/10

Loc: Lake Orion MI
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Barriles]
      #6198217 - 11/16/13 01:49 PM Attachment (34 downloads)

Mine had to be returned due to a faulty Dec motor. Once replaced under warranty it's running fine.

Best I've been able to get with it...



It does make for a compact setup, shown below on my Benro fold-flat camera tripod.


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Astro_Brucitor
member


Reged: 08/19/13

Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: lakeorion]
      #6201923 - 11/18/13 03:33 PM

Hi Iakeorian,

Great shot of the Orion constellation, did you use your Nikon D5000 and what lens did you use to take that picture? I've got a D5100 and am curious as what the abilities this camera has just from being on a go-to mount.


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lakeorion
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/03/10

Loc: Lake Orion MI
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Astro_Brucitor]
      #6202095 - 11/18/13 05:00 PM

Thanks,

The Orion constellation was actually taken with a Fujifilm IS Pro. It's a factory full spectrum DSLR built off the Nikon D200 body. The lens was a Nikon 35mm f1.8 prime set to f3.5 with a IDAS UV/IR filter in front. Additional 'filtering' came from dew - I threw in a couple of the dewed frames into the stack to grow the brighter stars. Probably not best practice...

For an unmodded D5100 expect nearly the same, with less Ha sensitivity.


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Mkofski
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 07/19/11

Loc: Greenfield, Indiana, USA
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: lakeorion]
      #6202180 - 11/18/13 05:49 PM

That's a very nice looking portable setup and a great widefield shot of Orion. Thanks for sharing...

Mike


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Astro_Brucitor
member


Reged: 08/19/13

Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Mkofski]
      #6202317 - 11/18/13 06:56 PM

Okay nice, yeah I have that same 35 mm lens it's an amazing lens I love it, pretty incredible it could take that shot of Orion. Did the UV/IR filter help with the Hyrdogen Alpha sensitivity?

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lakeorion
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/03/10

Loc: Lake Orion MI
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Astro_Brucitor]
      #6205225 - 11/20/13 08:22 AM

No, the UV/IR doesn't help Ha sensitivity - filters can't make a camera more sensitive. What it helps with is cutting longer than Ha wavelengths that my camera is already sensitive to.
We're getting way off topic here btw...


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andysea
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 09/03/10

Loc: Seattle, WA
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: lakeorion]
      #6205386 - 11/20/13 10:12 AM

I owned the smarteq pro for a brief period of time and I was very happy with it. Here are a could of images that I took with it.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/andyinsea/9737305042/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/andyinsea/9752710054/
When auto guided it was perfectly capable to image at 300mm fl with my KAF8033 based ccd.

Andy


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Astro_Brucitor
member


Reged: 08/19/13

Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: andysea]
      #6213887 - 11/24/13 07:19 PM

Thanks Andy, those are some great shots and a great testimony to what this mount is capable of.

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andysea
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 09/03/10

Loc: Seattle, WA
Re: Ioptron SmartEQ PRO Portable GOTO GEM #3200 new [Re: Astro_Brucitor]
      #6216013 - 11/25/13 08:16 PM

Thanks! yes I was quite surprised by what the Smarteq pro could do:)

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