Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

Alignment tips here...

  • Please log in to reply
359 replies to this topic

#276 elrico

elrico

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 159
  • Joined: 16 Apr 2016
  • Loc: West Yorkshire UK

Posted 10 December 2017 - 01:21 PM

After you do the alignment, when you goto another star once you get it in the eyepiece does it stay there or does it slowly wander out of view?

Yes, the Tracking is spot on



#277 elrico

elrico

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 159
  • Joined: 16 Apr 2016
  • Loc: West Yorkshire UK

Posted 10 December 2017 - 01:27 PM

 

 

I have done Factory reset more than once, and to be quite honest just about feeling totally puzzled by the Nexstar HC re Alignment.

This is my procedure

Level Tripod and check again with Mount on.---put OTA on, Dew Shield and Telrad finder.

Turn on Power ( check power is ok fully charged) Check AZ is set to Positive & ALT to Negative ( my scope is slightly forward front heavy)---  check coordinates for my location are correct --- set time to Standard/UT and enter in 24hr format, enter date USA format---

 choose 2 star auto ( tried the others), viewing the Northern sky I pick my first star Vega--- slew to Vega--- center in Telrad press Enter---

Center in  EP press align, select Capella and send ( never on target exact but in Telrad and edge of EP , center in Telrad press Enter---

Center in EP press align.( Center in eyepiece with up & right movement) Now the fun begins !!!!

Test alignment by selecting Polaris and slew there, only just in the Telrad, no sight of it in the eyepiece (20mm reticle), so, send it to Betelguise in Orion, no sight in EP. Turn off everything ,double check and start again, no success again.

Take off EP & Visual back, put 6.3 FR on with correct spacing and attach Infinity CCD, Load up software on laptop, use crosshairs on screen and go through the alignment procedure on the laptop screen , slew to Capella, not in sight but moving around with the direction keys it appeared ( Capella ) in the top right hand side of the screen , I sent the scope to a DSO NGC 2169 and the cluster showed up on screen but it is an open cluster, then tried a more difficult target (stupid thing for me to do but forever the optimist haha) M97 Owl Nebula, searched around but no sight,even following a star map which I am not very good at !!, finished off sending to Vega, no sight, found it after a few moves of the direction keys , packed up frustrated again!!!

Any suggestions please appreciated

Eric

ps: Got my Frac out with synscan on its mount and no problem at all with the alignment procedure ,spot on. M97 small but bang on the button !!

Eric,

 

I see that this time of year in the evening Vega is very near zenith and Capella is quite closet to the horizon.  When selecting stars for alignment, avoid stars above 70 degrees in altitude or below 20 degrees.  Then select two stars with a separation of between 90 and 135 degrees.  Polaris is a good selection for your location as long as you are not using the scope on a wedge.  When centering the stars in the eyepiece, your current GoTo Approach settings dictate that final motions must be with the RIGHT and UP arrow buttons in order to eliminate the effects of gear backlash.  Other than that, your description has all other critical items accounted for: level the tripod (exact not required), enter the correct location/date/time/time zone and DST setting.

 

Many thanks Michael, when these somewhat eternal clouds clear the skies of West Yorkshire England I will give it a try.

Eric

 

The clouds cleared the other night so I had some practice following your advice Michael, the RIGHT & UP final movement did the trick for my setup, many thanks, simple solution in the end, the objects I went for were all very close to the center of the Reticle  20mm ep..

Regards Eric



#278 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 10 December 2017 - 05:51 PM

Good to hear Eric.

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide"
Author of "NexStar Observer List"
http://www.nexstarsite.com/


  • elrico and GDG like this

#279 Lemonhawk

Lemonhawk

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 281
  • Joined: 02 Sep 2017
  • Loc: Palm Harbor, FL

Posted 10 December 2017 - 09:14 PM

After StarSense has solve 3 plates and is ready to do a calibration, I do a goto Vega, and it point just to the right of Vega.  At this point if I push align to add this area, StarSense reports a fail.  If I try to center Vega it slowly moves out of the crosshairs of my 12mm EP, and will disappear from view in around a minute.  I'm thinking StarSense has the alignment correct but the scope is not tracking right.  SkySafari reports  the correct time, position and offset and tracking has  been set to sidereal.  I have not tried a manual align with this scope yet, it has never tracked the start field.  Whole  idea behind this scope was how easy it was going to be compared to my NexStar8.  At least I've had  a lot of practice with my setup and  take down!  



#280 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 10 December 2017 - 09:23 PM

Lemonhawk,

 

Have you performed the camera calibration (once) after a successful alignment?  This is necessary so the StarSense system knows the relationship between the center of the camera and the center of the field of view in the main telescope.  Stars high in the sky (above 70 degrees) are NOT good candidates for calibration.

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide"
Author of "NexStar Observer List"
http://www.nexstarsite.com/



#281 Lemonhawk

Lemonhawk

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 281
  • Joined: 02 Sep 2017
  • Loc: Palm Harbor, FL

Posted 25 December 2017 - 05:57 AM

Why would calibration help prevent the stars from rotating out of view in the ep? I would think that after the starsence align and before calibration the star field would be stationary.  I center the ep on a star and in a few seconds its disappeared,  makes calibration useless,  as I can't push the calibrate button fast enough!


Edited by Lemonhawk, 25 December 2017 - 05:58 AM.


#282 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 25 December 2017 - 06:10 AM

The suggestion to calibrate was too address the problem with GoTo accuracy, not bad tracking. The tracking problem could be related to your issues getting a good alignment or you may need to adjust your backlash compensation settings.

#283 Lemonhawk

Lemonhawk

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 281
  • Joined: 02 Sep 2017
  • Loc: Palm Harbor, FL

Posted 25 December 2017 - 10:38 AM

Where is the backlash stored, mount, HC or tablet?  If its the mount then do I  only need to do backlash once?  If its external then its for each HC and tablet.  The table also appear to be different as its 0 to 100 while  the HC has 2 settings per axis.  I messed with the backlash using settings in the tablet and using HC  buttons to do the movement and it seemed to improve in one axes but the other was still inconsistent, sometimes  appearing to work better, then suddenly going haywire again.  I have no far away targets in daylight, no towers and its FL, very flat, so I don't think I even have any trees far way!  



#284 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 25 December 2017 - 05:20 PM

Backlash compensation is stored in the motor control in the mount, so yes, you only need to adjust it once using either the HC or tablet though I do recommend the HC as there have been some reports of errors when making the changes via SkySafari/SkyPortal.

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide"
Author of "NexStar Observer List"
http://www.nexstarsite.com/



#285 Lemonhawk

Lemonhawk

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 281
  • Joined: 02 Sep 2017
  • Loc: Palm Harbor, FL

Posted 25 December 2017 - 08:30 PM

Thanks Mike.  It bothered me that the table and HC were so different so I can just use the HC and perhaps do better than I was doing with  the APP.



#286 Lemonhawk

Lemonhawk

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 281
  • Joined: 02 Sep 2017
  • Loc: Palm Harbor, FL

Posted 27 December 2017 - 12:18 AM

I had a little more success tonight.  An email from Celestron suggested resetting the StarSense and HC to the factory default.  This does not change the firmware, only resets the setting.  It seems  to have helped.  Now after after the StarSense align the star field is now at least stable!  I was then able to GOTO Betelgeuse and use that to do the calibration, then another StarSense alignment.  It was not an error free night.  The tablet dropped the connection several time (unusual).  I worked on setting the backlash some more but not entirely satisfied with the results.  Once I completed calibration and realign the goto's were in the RACI finder but not in the 11mm ep.  so I had to center things in the finder to get them to show up.  I tried to always end the centering using the up and right buttons and I tried recalibration a couple of times, but did not seem to change much.  After about an hour of viewing I tried a few more GOTO's and eventually returning to Betelgeuse, now however it was not even in the finder.  Viewing conditions were not the greatest as the moon was out, but at least tried my ES 11mm 82 deg ep and compared it to my 11.5 mm swa Mead 4000, I think I  liked  the Mead 4000 better.  There were a couple of times that the scope just took off and only punching one of the buttons on the HC halted the motion.  I don't know if I had inadvertently hit the control on tablet (really would like to have the table control removed).  I did have the StarSense HC connected this time as opposed to the Evolution HC,   



#287 Noah4x4

Noah4x4

    Gemini

  • *****
  • Posts: 3,050
  • Joined: 07 Apr 2016
  • Loc: Colchester UK

Posted 27 December 2017 - 07:00 AM

I would stop worrying about backlash. I doubt if it is the source of your problems.  I have never adjusted backlash with my Evolution and it's metal worm gears perform much better than the plastic of cheaper scopes. I would concentrate on developing your Starsense and Evolution user skills to move closer towards the results you seek.

 

"Dropped connections....scope took off" ( wild slew). If you are using SkySafari try reducing your <read out> rate from 4 to 1. Or better still, do all your early experimentation using the SkyPortal APP which is more reliable as its settings are factory set for Celestron. Yes, SkySafari is superior, but eliminating all possibility of user setting error is sensible. I suspect your issues are occuring because you are experiencing, but not quite understanding how difficult it can be to get precise GoTo in a tiny FOV and how to get better results....

 

Are you using City or Longitude/Latitude for <location>? I live 62 miles from 'London' and it is suffice to create the small inaccuracies you describe. The accuracy limit for 'City' seems to be about 40 miles, and cities now tend to be huge. So try Longitude/Latitude. I express mine down to the second and my GoTos are amazing. But....

 

Even so, getting ALL GoTos centred in an 11mm eyepeice isn't easy unless you have very accurately calibrated in SkySafari/Portal and added multiple additional alignment points (up to ten). These act like SYNC and improve GoTo accuracy around such stars. Hence, spread the additional alignment points across the sky (and seasons). As the 'up to ten' x SYNC isn't possible except with an APP and Starsense, I find that route far more accurate than with the Nexstar + HC. There, a target star is often just outside FOV and I pull it into view then SYNC on that. Then GoTo other objects situated around it are accurate. An APP is similar, except it remembers uo to ten 'SYNC' alignment points. But I digress....

 

If you are doing these calibration and add alignment point preparatory tasks in (say) a 25mm EP then finding the precise centre isn't easy and the larger FOV is such that you probably then won't succeed with your 11mm goal. I didn't achieve GoTo perfection until I calibrated and added alignment points using a 12mm illuminated reticle EP.

 

Here it took much patience. FIRST do it in a 25mm EP. Then repeat in ever greater magnification. Try this after defocusing and using the stars donut shape rather than a pinpoint star. It's easier to get that centred by reference to the FOV rather than guessing the centre. Even when using this 'donut' technique I only eventually got to perfection after using the cross hairs of my 12mm illuminated reticle EP. Fortunately,  my scope stays assembled, so it holds this accuracy. Frankly, there is a huge amount of user skill required that only develops with practice. You probably won't achieve perfection in your first few sessions. I don't think I achieved complete mastery in my first year. The FOV of an 11mm EP in a 9.25mm SCT is like that of a precise rifle. 

 

I hope these thoughts help.


  • kellyvictoria likes this

#288 Lemonhawk

Lemonhawk

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 281
  • Joined: 02 Sep 2017
  • Loc: Palm Harbor, FL

Posted 27 December 2017 - 10:50 AM

The calibrations  were done using a 12mm illuminated reticle EP.  As I said before, this was the first time I had so much trouble with skySafari dropping the link, and a couple of times it just  froze and I had to restart it.  I'll reduce its rate and I think i'll boost my wifi so that I have consistent access out on the street where I set up. The Evolution is nose heavy, even with a 40mm ES 82.  One axis is perfect and one axis seems  to have a lot of backlash (probably the alt axis).  Eventually the dew heater battery will be just above the diagonal, which may help.  I'll have to look into the magnet idea to see if that helps better balance things and still allow the diagonal not to crash.  Of all the new gear its the Baader clicklock diagonal and the associated 1.25 adapter that I really like for its ease of use!  I wish the tripod EP holder had 2"  slots, but then I suppose that would lead to 1.25 EP just "passing thru".   I'm getting there thanks to all your suggestions!



#289 rodb

rodb

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 898
  • Joined: 19 May 2008
  • Loc: MD, USA,

Posted 31 December 2017 - 10:32 AM

hi all i was on a few monhs back about deciding on a nexstar 6 se, well i am glad to say i went for and i love it. the view of jupiter i got sunday morning at 430 am was well worth the lack of sleep!
i used google earth to get longitude and latitude, try downloading that. just find your address in it. it even has google sky within the application, for space exploring.get it!

I just downloaded "Stellarium," the great all sky program that you can interact with, and move time into whatever night you will be observing. Great for identifying alignment stars. Maybe you all know about this program, but it's new to me, and it's fantastic.



#290 rodb

rodb

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 898
  • Joined: 19 May 2008
  • Loc: MD, USA,

Posted 02 January 2018 - 12:57 PM

Hi Jim,

 

As mentioned, I think that nowadays one should experiment; after all, Mike's advice was written a long time ago and concerned, in his opinion, the tail- end heaviness of the Nexstar 8i whereby the directions taken for star or object centralisation and anti-backlash settings, might well  have played a significant role :  the latter aspect being, for the 800 CPC of much lesser significance due to the superior worm drive over that of the N8i or 8SE.

 

All said though, I can claim that almost without exception, I received success with the alignment of my presumably tail-end Nexstar 8i by following Mike's  star and object centring instruction of "Upper Left Quadrant to the Right and Down" given his advised Positive Altitude GoTo Approach. 

 

This instruction has however been challenged over the years : hence my latter day recommendation to experiment between a Positive GoTo Approach assessed against a Negative GoTo Approach, invoking "Left Upper, Right and Down" with "Left Lower, Right and Up" and then, while maintaining respective GoTo Approaches, reversing the centring directions, while all the while leaving the OTA where you prefer it to be.

 

 You may then also wish to carry out the same with the 800 CPC although my feeling is that, given the superior drive and hence the significant lack of backlash associated with this 'scope, the difference between the two centring options for centring stars and objects, will be much less if not irrelevant.

 

I hope the above helps. Do let us know how it goes.

 

Best regards,

Tel.

 

PS. I forgot to mention that the above experimentation assumes that you have optimised anti-backlash on both of your 'scopes.

.

Hi, Tel,

 

A rant, but...

 

First though, you're the greatest, most patient giving of your time to help the hapless Celestron customer sort out all the less than perfect engineering. And I love your way of writing, your phrasing. Please take that as a compliment.

 

I've very recently come back to CN after several years away and just posted "Re-Semi-Newbie Needs Info," (not elegant title, I know), of which I've received many helpful replies. No question this CN site has the best people.

 

I'm considering either a 6SE or 8SE for observing on my city-ish balcony (no balcony above as I'm on the top (18th) floor, just two blocks north of the NW DC border, in MD, so have access to about 40% of the sky from about SSW to NNW, all just post-meridian. But down below, I'm confronted with blazing lights in their vast parking lot, thanks to a large, nationwide insurance headquarters. And of course, all the other buildings and street lights.

 

Now here's my rant. to make matters even worse, I'm only getting more and more confused as to the proper methods for setting up the scope, primarily for backlash effects. Tel, I've read all your instructions, and the many posts from users -- Negative Alt or Positive Alt; up-right or down-left, or the other way, just to correct the issues with the cheaper spur gears. Jeesh. And that's only part of the complexity to get accurate "enough" GoTos. To keep the price points within their business model for whom they assume would spend the $$, they've had to cut corners, as you say. So - the customer is left having to deal with all this -- certainly not plug and play, to say the least - but will have to be a so-called tester to make their product work.

 

I say that's backwards! The company should bend over backwards to exceed their customers expectations. Now I realize this will be going nowhere and probably not agreed to by most/all on this thread, as they're dedicated amateurs and will do most anything to further their hobby and will put up with all this.

 

I don't know how much worm gears cost relative to spur gears, and I know that Celestron sells a better product to correct these issues: the Evolution series. But they're much more expensive, due to the better gearing, but also to the internal battery, sturdier tripod and overall weight difference.

 

I think (this is the part that's going no where) Celestron should compromise and make the SE series with the better worm gears but without all the other Evo pluses. How much more would that SE sell for than the current SE? If not too much more (whatever that is), they should drop the current SE in favor of making their customers much happier, albeit for some more bucks, and eliminate all these posts on the frustrated customer's issues (and hair-pulling). Tel, you especially know by answering all their questions.

 

Ok, I needed to get that off my chest.

 

Rod 



#291 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 04 January 2018 - 02:03 AM

Hi Rod,

The extensive, detailed advice given here and in my books is more about getting really, really good results with night after night consistency. Generally the new scope owner is just experiencing new gadget frustration and just missed something simple when out under the stars the first couple of nights. Lots of owners completely ignore the balance, centering directions, GoTo Approach and the rest and are perfectly happy with their results.

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide"
http://www.NexStarSite.com
  • jterrasa likes this

#292 rodb

rodb

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 898
  • Joined: 19 May 2008
  • Loc: MD, USA,

Posted 04 January 2018 - 01:09 PM

Hi Rod,

The extensive, detailed advice given here and in my books is more about getting really, really good results with night after night consistency. Generally the new scope owner is just experiencing new gadget frustration and just missed something simple when out under the stars the first couple of nights. Lots of owners completely ignore the balance, centering directions, GoTo Approach and the rest and are perfectly happy with their results.

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide"
http://www.NexStarSite.com

Hi, back, Mike.

 

You say, above: "Lots of owners completely ignore the balance, centering directions, GoTo Approach and the rest and are perfectly happy with their results."

 

Do you mean they still use the automation (GoTo alignments and tracking -- not manual slewing w/o alignment) and get decent GoTos, ones that fit somewhere within a wide field EP? If so, then that's good news for the likes of me. Could you further explain?

 

Since I have the mic for a moment, may I further ask your opinion (or anyone's) on the choices I'm considering. Remember, I may only have 40% of visible sky (or less).

 

1), With the limited sky, would I still have a good chance of obtaining alignments? Then to the types of scopes...

 

2) Since my skies are very LP'd, would a larger aperture be better? E.g., would an 8" SE do better than a 6" SE? Penetrating the LP by virtue of increased light gathering?

 

3) And to the crux of my options: I know I've gotten some opinions before, but would you trade 2" of aperture for a more ergonomic and easier experience. Again, e.g., a 6" EVO rather than an 8" SE? (About the same price and weight). I'm attracted to the EVO's worm gears for much better backlash control, the more stable mount/tripod - but I have no interest in the EVO's WiFi capabilities, the very reasons for the EVO's existence, it seems to me. I would still be using the mount's HC. Is that crazy?! 

 

If you can spare a further moment, I'd love to hear your opinions, as you're the resident expert, and, no doubt have had hands on experience with all the SE's and EVO's. bow.gif (And, of course, any others with opinions who'd like to share with me and other beginners out there 'hungering' for such advice. cool.gif

 

Regards, Rod



#293 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 04 January 2018 - 09:19 PM

 

Hi Rod,

The extensive, detailed advice given here and in my books is more about getting really, really good results with night after night consistency. Generally the new scope owner is just experiencing new gadget frustration and just missed something simple when out under the stars the first couple of nights. Lots of owners completely ignore the balance, centering directions, GoTo Approach and the rest and are perfectly happy with their results.

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide"
http://www.NexStarSite.com

Hi, back, Mike.

 

You say, above: "Lots of owners completely ignore the balance, centering directions, GoTo Approach and the rest and are perfectly happy with their results."

 

Do you mean they still use the automation (GoTo alignments and tracking -- not manual slewing w/o alignment) and get decent GoTos, ones that fit somewhere within a wide field EP? If so, then that's good news for the likes of me. Could you further explain?

 

Since I have the mic for a moment, may I further ask your opinion (or anyone's) on the choices I'm considering. Remember, I may only have 40% of visible sky (or less).

 

1), With the limited sky, would I still have a good chance of obtaining alignments? Then to the types of scopes...

 

2) Since my skies are very LP'd, would a larger aperture be better? E.g., would an 8" SE do better than a 6" SE? Penetrating the LP by virtue of increased light gathering?

 

3) And to the crux of my options: I know I've gotten some opinions before, but would you trade 2" of aperture for a more ergonomic and easier experience. Again, e.g., a 6" EVO rather than an 8" SE? (About the same price and weight). I'm attracted to the EVO's worm gears for much better backlash control, the more stable mount/tripod - but I have no interest in the EVO's WiFi capabilities, the very reasons for the EVO's existence, it seems to me. I would still be using the mount's HC. Is that crazy?! 

 

If you can spare a further moment, I'd love to hear your opinions, as you're the resident expert, and, no doubt have had hands on experience with all the SE's and EVO's. bow.gif (And, of course, any others with opinions who'd like to share with me and other beginners out there 'hungering' for such advice. cool.gif

 

Regards, Rod

 

Correct Rod - with just a good college try, most people get a good enough alignment to put objects in a moderate field of view.

 

1) Yes, with a moderately obstructed sky you will be able to get decent alignment results.

 

2) Generally speaking, bigger aperture = more objects you can view and better resolution on all objects.

 

3) Given your stated objectives and inclination towards visual over astrophotography, I would recommend the 8SE over the 6" Evo due to the much larger number of objects you would be able to enjoy.

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide"
Author of "NexStar Observer List"
http://www.nexstarsite.com/


  • rossienda69 likes this

#294 rodb

rodb

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 898
  • Joined: 19 May 2008
  • Loc: MD, USA,

Posted 05 January 2018 - 06:25 AM

 

 

Hi Rod,

The extensive, detailed advice given here and in my books is more about getting really, really good results with night after night consistency. Generally the new scope owner is just experiencing new gadget frustration and just missed something simple when out under the stars the first couple of nights. Lots of owners completely ignore the balance, centering directions, GoTo Approach and the rest and are perfectly happy with their results.

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide"
http://www.NexStarSite.com

Hi, back, Mike.

 

You say, above: "Lots of owners completely ignore the balance, centering directions, GoTo Approach and the rest and are perfectly happy with their results."

 

Do you mean they still use the automation (GoTo alignments and tracking -- not manual slewing w/o alignment) and get decent GoTos, ones that fit somewhere within a wide field EP? If so, then that's good news for the likes of me. Could you further explain?

 

Since I have the mic for a moment, may I further ask your opinion (or anyone's) on the choices I'm considering. Remember, I may only have 40% of visible sky (or less).

 

1), With the limited sky, would I still have a good chance of obtaining alignments? Then to the types of scopes...

 

2) Since my skies are very LP'd, would a larger aperture be better? E.g., would an 8" SE do better than a 6" SE? Penetrating the LP by virtue of increased light gathering?

 

3) And to the crux of my options: I know I've gotten some opinions before, but would you trade 2" of aperture for a more ergonomic and easier experience. Again, e.g., a 6" EVO rather than an 8" SE? (About the same price and weight). I'm attracted to the EVO's worm gears for much better backlash control, the more stable mount/tripod - but I have no interest in the EVO's WiFi capabilities, the very reasons for the EVO's existence, it seems to me. I would still be using the mount's HC. Is that crazy?! 

 

If you can spare a further moment, I'd love to hear your opinions, as you're the resident expert, and, no doubt have had hands on experience with all the SE's and EVO's. bow.gif (And, of course, any others with opinions who'd like to share with me and other beginners out there 'hungering' for such advice. cool.gif

 

Regards, Rod

 

Correct Rod - with just a good college try, most people get a good enough alignment to put objects in a moderate field of view.

 

1) Yes, with a moderately obstructed sky you will be able to get decent alignment results.

 

2) Generally speaking, bigger aperture = more objects you can view and better resolution on all objects.

 

3) Given your stated objectives and inclination towards visual over astrophotography, I would recommend the 8SE over the 6" Evo due to the much larger number of objects you would be able to enjoy.

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide"
Author of "NexStar Observer List"
http://www.nexstarsite.com/

 

Thanks very much, Mike. Sounds very positive for my situation.

 

If I may beg your indulgence once more, here's one "last" issue/question: I had the original C8 (orange) in the 1970s. I don't know what coatings it had (probably primitive), but the eyepiece background was grey, not dark. And while DSOs were bright and awe inspiring (e.g., M42, M57 - breathtaking, actually), the moon and planets were good enough but not tack sharp. Do current Celestron SCTs have better optics than back then. Certainly, modern coatings are much better. So -- what might I expect as viewing improvements, i.e., are images of the moon, say, closer to refractors in sharpness. Also, is the background darker than in the past?

 

Thanks and I look forward to your answers.

 

Much regards, Rod



#295 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 05 January 2018 - 07:46 PM

Hi Rod,

For future responses, let's take this back to the topic you initiated about selecting a scope.

SCTs will never have the sharp views of a apochromatic refractor, but their typically much larger aperture shows additional details. The central obstruction of the secondary mirror robs some contrast in the image. Additionally, when comparing the views, you should match the magnification - using the same eyepiece in both will yield much higher magnification in the SCT which naturally results in much lower contrast and an apparently bright background.

Finally, the SCTs made in the 70s by Celestron and Meade were of notoriously poor quality. Definitely much better now.

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide"
http://www.NexStarSite.com

#296 rodb

rodb

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 898
  • Joined: 19 May 2008
  • Loc: MD, USA,

Posted 06 January 2018 - 08:31 AM

Hi Rod,

For future responses, let's take this back to the topic you initiated about selecting a scope.

SCTs will never have the sharp views of a apochromatic refractor, but their typically much larger aperture shows additional details. The central obstruction of the secondary mirror robs some contrast in the image. Additionally, when comparing the views, you should match the magnification - using the same eyepiece in both will yield much higher magnification in the SCT which naturally results in much lower contrast and an apparently bright background.

Finally, the SCTs made in the 70s by Celestron and Meade were of notoriously poor quality. Definitely much better now.

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide"
http://www.NexStarSite.com

Yeah, I get what you're saying about SCTs vs. APOs. It's what I figured to be the case. But...when you say the 70's version "were of notoriously poor quality," that's the very issue I was wondering about. Are the optics (glass) or mechanical alignments, etc. better today? Or is there some other reason for their superiority> What I'm trying to get you to say (if it's true, of course) is that my viewing experience should be (much) better than way back then, even if the SCTs are still saddled with their inherent issues, as compared with APOs.

 

Ok, I've beaten this subject to death. Still, I'd love to hear your further opinions on this last, most important, point: The view will be better in today's SCTs than the 1970s versions and to what characteristics would they be attributed to?

 

Much Regards, and thanks for your patience in tutoring such a one as moi! 

 

Rod



#297 Zakariya

Zakariya

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 47
  • Joined: 02 Jul 2018

Posted 20 July 2018 - 02:55 PM

I have starsense autoalign and always failed with it , any idea with better alignment tip ? I used the auto align 



#298 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 20 July 2018 - 08:40 PM

Hi,

General tips:

Update the firmware. See the 'how to' guides on this page of my website:
http://www.nexstarsi...om/Firmware.htm

Double check your date, time, time zone, daylight saving time and location settings.

Level the tripod. Does not need to be exact, but you can't do it by eye.

The last two tips are important as StarSense needs to make certain assumptions about the general area of the sky it is observing when it does the'plate solve' (determining what stars it is seeing).

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide"
http://www.NexStarSite.com

#299 Zakariya

Zakariya

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 47
  • Joined: 02 Jul 2018

Posted 21 July 2018 - 01:50 PM

second night and still the starsense fail again

 

I don't think it can do it as many obstructions are around my home , any other method will be helpful for my case ?

and I noticed that not too many stars are captured by the camera in a range of 14-17 stars , the area is heavy polluted with light

I tried the manual align and it worked , but after 10 minutes it lost again and never go to right star


Edited by Zakariya, 22 July 2018 - 01:36 AM.


#300 Michael_Swanson

Michael_Swanson

    Author of The NexStar Users Guide

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,632
  • Joined: 23 Apr 2003

Posted 22 July 2018 - 04:52 AM

Sure, select the StarSense manual alignment routine and point at 3 to 4 clear areas of the sky manually. Start with the scope pointed to a specific orientation, for example, South and level, and you can save it for User Auto Align to automate the process for the future. More details in my book.

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar User's Guide"
http://www.NexStarSite.com


CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics