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iOptron price drop

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#26 Stelios

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 04:36 PM

I believe also that you could get a TPI spreader for the AVX tripod and that would make it even sturdier.

 

Note that when doing photography you usually have legs retracted. The tripod is very steady under those circumstances.

 

If only the AVX were up to its tripod... Mine is coming back from Celestron. I sent it because of a DEC problem. So they replaced the *RA* motor, cleaned it and 'tested' it. I'm not hopeful :(

 

BUT, if you want to splurge, get an Avalon T-110. I was doubtful till I actually saw it. A really outstanding tripod. Double clamps for steadiness, compatibility with a ton of stuff, a nice case, an accurate bubble level, and if you're visual, bonus openings for EP's.


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#27 bobzeq25

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 07:01 PM

The T-110 is $900.  The iOptron tri-pier is $600.  Not sure the very pretty Avalon is worth it, in terms of improved imaging performance.

 

My 42 inch portable pier was $330, and I think "good enough".  Requires fairly level ground.

 

The 2" tripod is $300, and I am not comfortable using it extended.  The AVX tripod weighs about the same, so may be similar.


Edited by bobzeq25, 14 July 2017 - 07:04 PM.


#28 psandelle

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 07:15 PM

I think it's the the 10lbs less weight for the Avalon that makes it worth it. Sometimes super-light is good. I found the T-130 to be better machined and easier to adjust than the iOptron tri-pier as well. All around better made. It "felt" sturdier because it felt better put-together. No quantitative methodology here, though. I started with an iOptron portable pier, and it was solid, but boy are those a pain-in-the-backside to tear-down in the middle of winter at 25 degrees at the end of the night. I went and got a wonderful Binoscope super-heavy-duty tripod that let me rotate in azimuth. But that's a whole 'nother story.

 

Never liked any mid-range 2" tripod. Never felt too sturdy.

 

Paul



#29 bmhjr

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 07:46 PM

Tripier is portable and just folds up. Pretty simple.  I like the rolling case it comes with but that's just a luxury.


Edited by bmhjr, 14 July 2017 - 07:48 PM.


#30 John Miele

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 07:49 PM

I use a standard meade field tripod with my CEM60 and it's very solid. I did have to fabricate an aluminun  adapter plate to make it work. I can post pics if anyone is interested...John


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#31 bobzeq25

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 09:15 PM

I started with an iOptron portable pier, and it was solid, but boy are those a pain-in-the-backside to tear-down in the middle of winter at 25 degrees at the end of the night.

Oh boy, it would be.  I could just shove it into a storage shed, assembled, when I was in my backyard.  Now it lives in my observatory.



#32 psandelle

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 09:36 PM

Hey, I wanted to make sure when I was coming back to astro I had something solid. They are. If I had a backyard to shoot from, I'd probably still have it.

 

Paul



#33 JohnC13

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 10:52 PM

I use a standard meade field tripod with my CEM60 and it's very solid. I did have to fabricate an aluminun  adapter plate to make it work. I can post pics if anyone is interested...John

Yes please! Did you do make it yourself?


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#34 JohnC13

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 11:00 PM

I believe also that you could get a TPI spreader for the AVX tripod and that would make it even sturdier.

 

Note that when doing photography you usually have legs retracted. The tripod is very steady under those circumstances.

 

If only the AVX were up to its tripod... Mine is coming back from Celestron. I sent it because of a DEC problem. So they replaced the *RA* motor, cleaned it and 'tested' it. I'm not hopeful frown.gif

 

BUT, if you want to splurge, get an Avalon T-110. I was doubtful till I actually saw it. A really outstanding tripod. Double clamps for steadiness, compatibility with a ton of stuff, a nice case, an accurate bubble level, and if you're visual, bonus openings for EP's.

On Avalon website they offer an ieq45 adapter for the T-110/130. I'm guessing that adapter should also work for the CEM60?



#35 John Miele

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Posted 15 July 2017 - 07:49 PM

 

I use a standard meade field tripod with my CEM60 and it's very solid. I did have to fabricate an aluminun  adapter plate to make it work. I can post pics if anyone is interested...John

Yes please! Did you do make it yourself?

 

Yes. I bought the tripod used for $60 off ebay. I also bought the aluminum circular plate off ebay for about $15-$20. I had to drill 3 holes in th eplate to match the meade tripod mounting bolts. Then I had to drill and tap 3 more holes for the center pivot and the two holddown studs for the CEM60. Sorry the pictures are a little rough. I can guide to 0.6 arc-sec combined RMS with my CEM60 and AT8RC on good nights so the tripod is plenty sturdy. Very low cost solution if you have a drill press and some taps....John

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#36 purdyd

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Posted 15 July 2017 - 10:27 PM

I believe also that you could get a TPI spreader for the AVX tripod and that would make it even sturdier.

 

Note that when doing photography you usually have legs retracted. The tripod is very steady under those circumstances.

 

 

The AVX tripod with the TPI spreader, a car battery on a tray over the spreaders, the legs retracted, and vibration pads, is a little rock of a tripod.

 

Just as sturdy as my tripier.  

 

Without those things, and the legs out, it is a wobbly thing.

 

CEM60 is tempting at under $2200......


Edited by purdyd, 15 July 2017 - 10:27 PM.

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#37 JohnC13

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Posted 16 July 2017 - 01:56 AM

 

 

I use a standard meade field tripod with my CEM60 and it's very solid. I did have to fabricate an aluminun  adapter plate to make it work. I can post pics if anyone is interested...John

Yes please! Did you do make it yourself?

 

Yes. I bought the tripod used for $60 off ebay. I also bought the aluminum circular plate off ebay for about $15-$20. I had to drill 3 holes in th eplate to match the meade tripod mounting bolts. Then I had to drill and tap 3 more holes for the center pivot and the two holddown studs for the CEM60. Sorry the pictures are a little rough. I can guide to 0.6 arc-sec combined RMS with my CEM60 and AT8RC on good nights so the tripod is plenty sturdy. Very low cost solution if you have a drill press and some taps....John

 

Excellent work!


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#38 Whuppy

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 02:46 PM

 

 

I use a standard meade field tripod with my CEM60 and it's very solid. I did have to fabricate an aluminun  adapter plate to make it work. I can post pics if anyone is interested...John

Yes please! Did you do make it yourself?

 

Yes. I bought the tripod used for $60 off ebay. I also bought the aluminum circular plate off ebay for about $15-$20. I had to drill 3 holes in th eplate to match the meade tripod mounting bolts. Then I had to drill and tap 3 more holes for the center pivot and the two holddown studs for the CEM60. Sorry the pictures are a little rough. I can guide to 0.6 arc-sec combined RMS with my CEM60 and AT8RC on good nights so the tripod is plenty sturdy. Very low cost solution if you have a drill press and some taps....John

 

Its hard to tell from the photo's but it looks like you used a pin wrench to tighten the studs and center pin? What size is the center pin btw?


Edited by Whuppy, 17 July 2017 - 02:47 PM.


#39 JohnC13

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 07:51 PM

 

 

That's an excellent point. I would much rather lift 27lbs vs 44lbs at home and especially at a dark(er) sky location. From what I've read from CN posts, the cem60 doesn't auto guide and playback pec/ppec at the same time. I'm in the dark (pun somewhat intended) whether it would make a positive difference for imaging. IMHO, it appears that the cem60 wins over the cgx

 

 

 

AFAIK, the non EC version most assuredly will guide and playback PPEC at the same time.

 

"Hi John,
Yes, the CEM60 can be guided while playing back PEC. However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk
each other when in action."

Thank you for choosing iOptron products!
Kevin (Tech2)
Your Tech Support Team

iOptron Corporation
6E/F Gill Street
Woburn, MA 01801
Tel: (781)569-0200
Fax: (781)935-2860
www.ioptron.com

Well, I heard back from iOptron tech support. You're right!  I just don't understand this: "However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk each other when in action."



#40 TimP

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 10:20 PM

 

 

I use a standard meade field tripod with my CEM60 and it's very solid. I did have to fabricate an aluminun  adapter plate to make it work. I can post pics if anyone is interested...John

Yes please! Did you do make it yourself?

 

Yes. I bought the tripod used for $60 off ebay. I also bought the aluminum circular plate off ebay for about $15-$20. I had to drill 3 holes in th eplate to match the meade tripod mounting bolts. Then I had to drill and tap 3 more holes for the center pivot and the two holddown studs for the CEM60. Sorry the pictures are a little rough. I can guide to 0.6 arc-sec combined RMS with my CEM60 and AT8RC on good nights so the tripod is plenty sturdy. Very low cost solution if you have a drill press and some taps....John

 

I did the same thing as you. I have a cgem dx I'm not using so I picked up a 6 inch by 1 inch thick plate and had a machine shop drill the holes. That  cgem dx tripod is a beast and very sturdy. I use the ioptron pier in the field. You just don't want to lug that big Celestron tripod very far.



#41 Chuckwagon

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 10:51 PM

 

 

 

That's an excellent point. I would much rather lift 27lbs vs 44lbs at home and especially at a dark(er) sky location. From what I've read from CN posts, the cem60 doesn't auto guide and playback pec/ppec at the same time. I'm in the dark (pun somewhat intended) whether it would make a positive difference for imaging. IMHO, it appears that the cem60 wins over the cgx

 

 

 

AFAIK, the non EC version most assuredly will guide and playback PPEC at the same time.

 

"Hi John,
Yes, the CEM60 can be guided while playing back PEC. However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk
each other when in action."

Thank you for choosing iOptron products!
Kevin (Tech2)
Your Tech Support Team

iOptron Corporation
6E/F Gill Street
Woburn, MA 01801
Tel: (781)569-0200
Fax: (781)935-2860
www.ioptron.com

Well, I heard back from iOptron tech support. You're right!  I just don't understand this: "However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk each other when in action."

 

It means you may see no difference between guiding with PEC on and guiding with it off.  It will sort of depend on your specific mount.  If your mount has some rather sharp excursions, it's possible that PEC may help tame them and then guiding would be a little smoother.  On the other hand, since PEC and guiding do not communicate, you may get some odd interactions that amplify your corrections, and then your guiding would suffer.  The best solution is to try it and see.  Sure, it will take some time, but at least you'll know for sure if using PEC with your mount guided is good or bad.

 

Cheers



#42 JohnC13

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 01:36 AM

 

 

 

 

That's an excellent point. I would much rather lift 27lbs vs 44lbs at home and especially at a dark(er) sky location. From what I've read from CN posts, the cem60 doesn't auto guide and playback pec/ppec at the same time. I'm in the dark (pun somewhat intended) whether it would make a positive difference for imaging. IMHO, it appears that the cem60 wins over the cgx

 

 

 

AFAIK, the non EC version most assuredly will guide and playback PPEC at the same time.

 

"Hi John,
Yes, the CEM60 can be guided while playing back PEC. However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk
each other when in action."

Thank you for choosing iOptron products!
Kevin (Tech2)
Your Tech Support Team

iOptron Corporation
6E/F Gill Street
Woburn, MA 01801
Tel: (781)569-0200
Fax: (781)935-2860
www.ioptron.com

Well, I heard back from iOptron tech support. You're right!  I just don't understand this: "However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk each other when in action."

 

It means you may see no difference between guiding with PEC on and guiding with it off.  It will sort of depend on your specific mount.  If your mount has some rather sharp excursions, it's possible that PEC may help tame them and then guiding would be a little smoother.  On the other hand, since PEC and guiding do not communicate, you may get some odd interactions that amplify your corrections, and then your guiding would suffer.  The best solution is to try it and see.  Sure, it will take some time, but at least you'll know for sure if using PEC with your mount guided is good or bad.

 

Cheers

 

For sure, yes, thanks for the input, much appreciated. It reminds me of when I was learning photography and I would ask if this or that would work and I'd get the response, "Test it"   



#43 Whuppy

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 08:16 AM

Good luck getting any of the Cem60's. The word from ioptron...early August, and limited supply.

#44 rmollise

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 09:07 AM

 

 

AFAIK, the non EC version most assuredly will guide and playback PPEC at the same time.

 

 

 

 

 

"Hi John,
Yes, the CEM60 can be guided while playing back PEC. However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk
each other when in action."

Thank you for choosing iOptron products!
Kevin (Tech2)
Your Tech Support Team

iOptron Corporation
6E/F Gill Street
Woburn, MA 01801
Tel: (781)569-0200
Fax: (781)935-2860
www.ioptron.com

Well, I heard back from iOptron tech support. You're right!  I just don't understand this: "However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk each other when in action."

 

Some people say that...but my experience is that it is NOT TRUE. Whether we are talking an imported mount or a top-dollar one, PEC can improve your guiding. You may find my article here of interest:  http://uncle-rods.bl...not-to-pec.html

 

If this were true, AP mounts wouldn't come from the factory PEC trained. ;)


Edited by rmollise, 18 July 2017 - 09:08 AM.

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#45 JoeR

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 12:34 PM

Good luck getting any of the Cem60's. The word from ioptron...early August, and limited supply.

Astronomics has one in stock. So does BH Photo Video but at the old price.



#46 Whuppy

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 03:08 PM

 

Good luck getting any of the Cem60's. The word from ioptron...early August, and limited supply.

Astronomics has one in stock. So does BH Photo Video but at the old price.

 

I called B&H and pointed out the price to them. They were willing to price match and he put me on hold for a manager, after waiting for nearly 10 minutes I hung up!bangbang.gif .  Everybody who sells them has them for $2188 except for B&H. Also, everyone who sells them ships for free except for Astronomics ($39.95 ground).



#47 Stelios

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 03:12 PM

The T-110 is $900.  The iOptron tri-pier is $600.  Not sure the very pretty Avalon is worth it, in terms of improved imaging performance.

 

My 42 inch portable pier was $330, and I think "good enough".  Requires fairly level ground.

 

The 2" tripod is $300, and I am not comfortable using it extended.  The AVX tripod weighs about the same, so may be similar.

The T-110 was more than $100 under your figure from Tolga. 

 

I must admit I liked the iOptron tri-pier that I saw the other day. But I wouldn't trade my T-110 for it. And if you evaluate the iOptron with case (the T-110 comes with a very nice compact case) then the prices are extremely close.


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#48 Stelios

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 03:22 PM

 

 

Hi John,
Yes, the CEM60 can be guided while playing back PEC. However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk
each other when in action."

Well, I heard back from iOptron tech support. You're right!  I just don't understand this: "However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk each other when in action."

 

Some people say that...but my experience is that it is NOT TRUE. Whether we are talking an imported mount or a top-dollar one, PEC can improve your guiding. You may find my article here of interest:  http://uncle-rods.bl...not-to-pec.html

 

If this were true, AP mounts wouldn't come from the factory PEC trained. wink.gif

 

Interesting. I am going to try the experiment with my AP mount. I ran PemPro to get a custom curve, and the periodic error of my Mach1 is weird--it's very low (under 2 arc sec) but it's not totally periodic, it moves up and down the scale. In other words, the periodic error curve sometimes is to the east (varying amounts) sometimes to the west (varying amounts), and sometimes dead even of the RA movement axis. 

 

The net result is that the *fitted* curve is a good approximation for the *combined curves*--but I think a poor one for any single one of them.

 

As the PE is pretty smooth, I'm going to test whether turning PEC off improves guiding. It's one of my planned experiments this Friday. Half an hour (5 worm periods) each way should give a good enough indication. I'll try twice if I get the time, one time with high hysteresis (25%), and one with low (10%).

 

Note: I have no doubt that PEC would improve guiding in a mount where the error curve repeats in place (which is sort of what people expect when they hear "periodic") or when there are spikes at points in the worm cycle. But in this case... we'll see. (I don't expect any dramatic improvements, the RMS on medium seeing with PEC on is about 0.73 - 0.80 which I can live with).


Edited by Stelios, 18 July 2017 - 03:25 PM.

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#49 bobzeq25

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 03:53 PM

 

 

 

AFAIK, the non EC version most assuredly will guide and playback PPEC at the same time.

 

 

 

 

 

"Hi John,
Yes, the CEM60 can be guided while playing back PEC. However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk
each other when in action."

Thank you for choosing iOptron products!
Kevin (Tech2)
Your Tech Support Team

iOptron Corporation
6E/F Gill Street
Woburn, MA 01801
Tel: (781)569-0200
Fax: (781)935-2860
www.ioptron.com

Well, I heard back from iOptron tech support. You're right!  I just don't understand this: "However, you may not
get a better results (most likely). Because these two methods do not talk each other when in action."

 

Some people say that...but my experience is that it is NOT TRUE. Whether we are talking an imported mount or a top-dollar one, PEC can improve your guiding. You may find my article here of interest:  http://uncle-rods.bl...not-to-pec.html

 

If this were true, AP mounts wouldn't come from the factory PEC trained. wink.gif

 

It works for some mounts, not for others.  Depends on their internal programming.   Exactly what iOptron is saying, they know their mount, and how it works.  The best way to know about yours is simply to experiment.



#50 rmollise

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 05:54 PM

It works for some mounts, not for others.  Depends on their internal programming.   Exactly what iOptron is saying, they know their mount, and how it works.  The best way to know about yours is simply to experiment.

 
I'm not sure what you mean by "internal programming"...can you explain?

 

I can tell you that my experience is that I've yet to find a mount that can't be improved auto-guiding wise by PEC as long is PEC playback is allowed during auto-guiding (there are a few mounts out there where that is disabled, and God knows why. ;) )

 

Not just high dollar mounts, either. I was doubtful about it helping my lowly VX, but it darned sure did. PPEC can improve the iOptron CEM60 no matter what this support person opined. ;)


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