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C9.25 vs Mead 10" vs C11

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#1 MalVeauX

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 03:16 PM

Hey all,

 

This is probably the millionth thread on such a subject. I'm at the point where I'm finally feeling like moving to a larger aperture scope. My C6 has served very well, but, I have a 5 inch refractor that I use more often and they're too similar. So I'm thinking I'd like to use it as an excuse to go bigger.

 

Context: This is from an HEQ5/Sirius point of view with no real plans of changing that soon. Also, I'm ok with used and 20+ years old equipment.

 

I'm doing more visual lately, as I'm primarily an imager with my scopes and mount. However, one thing I really enjoy is specfically viewing and imaging individual named craters and features on the moon. I'm not a big planet imager, but that's probably because I only have 6 inch apertures or less and so I'm not able to really resolve things to a point that becomes super interesting yet until I go bigger. But, I wouldn't mind seeing more and imaging more of Jupiter, Saturn, Venus, Mars.

 

The rational side of me thinks the C9.25 is the way to go. The weight is a good point for my mount. The aperture is great. But aperture fever law requires I also consider the heavier Meade 10" and of course a heavier C11. Used prices are a little different, but not all that much different, so really it's not about price at this point and more about getting the instrument that would serve better. Again, my head says the C9.25 would be the one to go with, as my mount can handle it perhaps and I'm not looking at extreme imaging, just the big fatties floating around, and some visual. But again, I can't help but wonder, go straigth to the 27lb~28lb area and stress the mount with a 10" or C11? Or be rational, and just go with a C9.25 and enjoy wondering what an extra inch would really do for the huge weight difference.... Sigh!

 

Very best,



#2 Phil Barker

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 03:34 PM

All will be a step up on the 5 inch refractor.  The 9.25 is lighter needs less mount etc and has a proven reputation.

 

If you like deep sky and have a decent mount and like lifting weights go for the Meade 10 or C11.

 

A friend has the latest Meade 10optics are good as was my old C11 you can't go wrong either way.


Edited by Phil Barker, 24 August 2017 - 05:10 PM.

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#3 junomike

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 03:42 PM

For that Mount the C925 would be best but the C11 is possible as long as you balance perfectly and don't have any wind.

I would recommend the C925 but It were me I'd probably go with the C11. Although I like the Meade optics (especially the ACF's) the 0.75" isn't going to be as noticeable at the eyepiece as the extra 10lbs will be on the mount (over the C925) and the C11 gains you an inch for 3 lbs less.


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#4 macdonjh

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 03:53 PM

I'm not an imager, so take the following with a grain of salt:

 

I'd be worried about any of the three scopes you are considering for imaging on an HEQ-5 mount.  I had an Orion SkyView Pro that I really liked until I mounted my driveway scope on it.  My driveway scope weighs 21 or 22 pounds when I'm using it.  Even with only a couple of pounds over its rated payload, the SVP didn't behave well.  The motors cogged in a way I could see at 240x and greater magnification.  Sadly, the SVP had to go.  It was replaced by a Sirius (HEQ-5) which I still have and like.

 

So my concern is with a scope, camera, guide scope, guide camera, etc. you'll be quite close to or exceeding the thirty pound rated payload of the HEQ-5 and you'll see the same poor performance I did with my SVP.

 

As for the scopes: I am a Celestron fan, and so are most of the members in the club I belong to that own SCTs.  The few Meades I've seen have given soft views.  My second bout with aperture fever saw me stepping up from a 6" refractor to a C11, with amazing results.  The deep sky opened up with thousands more objects in reach, show piece objects looked like show pieces, etc., etc.


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#5 snommisbor

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 04:00 PM

If you think you will be upgrading your mount in the future I would go with the biggest, i.e. C11. I am about to get one from my buddy, and have been getting views to test it out when we view together and it was what made me want to get a big SCT again. The view of M13 vs my FSQ and even in a sense my TEC 140 just didn't compare. Of course I have a TEC 160 on the way and am getting rid of my 140 but I want to have the ability to go deep if I want to and having a big mount I knew I could pretty much get whatever I want. Once I get this permanent I plan on having the 160 and C11 side by side. So I would say go as big as you can.


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#6 rmollise

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 04:57 PM

Any of these OTAs will be OK on the mount for visual. For imaging? For deep sky imaging? IMHO all are too much.


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#7 CounterWeight

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 05:06 PM

I have not done any planet imaging, but from what I've read the more aperture the better, though there are amazing images made with smaller apertures - but i think that is the art of processing as much as anything?  I have not owned an heq5 mount but have many others.  What the SCt has going for it IMO for mount considerations is the compactness of the design.  The last cat scope I owned was a C11 and I really enjoyed it, a lot of horsepower when the sky allows and as already mentioned for globular clusters it will outreach your refractor.  I would want an increment better mount though.


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#8 Bill Barlow

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 08:07 PM

Marty, I have owned all three of those telescopes you are looking at.  I have even done a few side by side sessions with a C9.25 and M10 ACF.  These two very  very close and I would opt with the C9.25 to save some weight.  Although the ACF optics were pretty sharp.  I now own a C11 and it is a very good performer.  I would like to do a few side by sides with my C11 and a M12.  I have owned a M12 before, but not at the same time as the C11.  I think that they would be very close like the C9.25 and M10 were.  If it were me, I would go with the C11 to get as much aperture that I could since I observe mainly deep sky targets.

 

Bill  


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#9 MalVeauX

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 08:16 PM

Thanks all for the recommendations so far,

 

Again, for consideration:

 

1) Not upgrading the mount any time soon; so consider it on the HEQ5/Sirius for all purposes (mounted on a concrete pier)

2) Ok with used old gear

3) It will be for visual & imaging, but very likely more imaging

4) Imaging will strictly be planetary with at most a 2x extender & camera (no filters, no wheels, etc), so maybe +2 lbs tops added; no guiding; goal being the gas giants mostly

5) West coast Florida seeing

 

Again, I totally get that the 9.25" is the smart choice.

I'm trying to convince myself it's just absurd to even consider a C11 for example, even if it's possible.

 

Thanks again so far for the comments!

 

Very best,


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#10 jgraham

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 10:26 PM

Hmmm, you might be running the risk of overloading the Sirius for minimal gain for planetary imaging. If'n it were me, no contest, the C9.25. I also have access to several 10" SCTs, but I do almost all of my planetary imaging with an 8" SCT at f/30. Seeing rarely supports the larger scopes, and I like the results that I get with the smaller, lighter scope.


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#11 Tyson M

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 10:55 PM

Another plug for the 9.25 based on your mount alone.

 

You cant go wrong with the optics of any of these, I would say.  The Meade 10" ACf is a killer scope but is heavy.

 

For reasons Junomike mentioned, if you can afford it, go to the C11 Edge.  Basically the same mounting requirements.  But the wind will be too much to bear unless you had an observatory, so the 9.25 is the logical choice. 



#12 carolinaskies

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 08:45 AM

Hey all,

 

This is probably the millionth thread on such a subject. I'm at the point where I'm finally feeling like moving to a larger aperture scope. My C6 has served very well, but, I have a 5 inch refractor that I use more often and they're too similar. So I'm thinking I'd like to use it as an excuse to go bigger.

 

Context: This is from an HEQ5/Sirius point of view with no real plans of changing that soon. Also, I'm ok with used and 20+ years old equipment.

 

I'm doing more visual lately, as I'm primarily an imager with my scopes and mount. However, one thing I really enjoy is specfically viewing and imaging individual named craters and features on the moon. I'm not a big planet imager, but that's probably because I only have 6 inch apertures or less and so I'm not able to really resolve things to a point that becomes super interesting yet until I go bigger. But, I wouldn't mind seeing more and imaging more of Jupiter, Saturn, Venus, Mars.

 

The rational side of me thinks the C9.25 is the way to go. The weight is a good point for my mount. The aperture is great. But aperture fever law requires I also consider the heavier Meade 10" and of course a heavier C11. Used prices are a little different, but not all that much different, so really it's not about price at this point and more about getting the instrument that would serve better. Again, my head says the C9.25 would be the one to go with, as my mount can handle it perhaps and I'm not looking at extreme imaging, just the big fatties floating around, and some visual. But again, I can't help but wonder, go straigth to the 27lb~28lb area and stress the mount with a 10" or C11? Or be rational, and just go with a C9.25 and enjoy wondering what an extra inch would really do for the huge weight difference.... Sigh!

 

Very best,

As much as I'd like to suggest the 11" that mount won't handle the weight balance issues without damaging the mount and causing you to have to buy a new one anyway while damaging what you do have.   The 9.25 plus any equipment you mount to it will do fine for visual and limited AP.  

 


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#13 MalVeauX

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 08:57 AM

Thanks all,

 

As suspsected, C9.25 makes the most sense. Just wanted to make sure I wasn't off my rocker even considering something else.

 

Very best,



#14 rmollise

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 09:35 AM

Thanks all for the recommendations so far,

 

Again, for consideration:

 

1) Not upgrading the mount any time soon; so consider it on the HEQ5/Sirius for all purposes (mounted on a concrete pier)

2) Ok with used old gear

3) It will be for visual & imaging, but very likely more imaging

4) Imaging will strictly be planetary with at most a 2x extender & camera (no filters, no wheels, etc), so maybe +2 lbs tops added; no guiding; goal being the gas giants mostly

5) West coast Florida seeing

 

Again, I totally get that the 9.25" is the smart choice.

I'm trying to convince myself it's just absurd to even consider a C11 for example, even if it's possible.

 

Thanks again so far for the comments!

 

Very best,

 

If you are sticking to planets, that makes the 11 more practical. It will not "overload" the mount, and on a pier it will be fine. Well except on windy nights and those tend not to be so good for imaging. More aperture buys you a higher frame rate and/or more image scale for the planets. ;)


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#15 seasparky89

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 11:04 AM

I have both 8" and 9.25" SCTs.  I use them on my Atlas mount.  IMHO, my Atlas does not eliminate vibrations with the 9.25, unless I use my TPI spreader on the stock tripod, or switch to my Meade Giant field tripod.  For my 8" SCT, the stock Atlas tripod is fine.  Now, your Sirius mount is rated for less load, and it has a less beefy tripod than the Atlas.  If it were my decision to stick with the Sirius mount, I'd opt for an 8" SCT.  

 

Stan



#16 MalVeauX

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 03:05 PM



I have both 8" and 9.25" SCTs.  I use them on my Atlas mount.  IMHO, my Atlas does not eliminate vibrations with the 9.25, unless I use my TPI spreader on the stock tripod, or switch to my Meade Giant field tripod.  For my 8" SCT, the stock Atlas tripod is fine.  Now, your Sirius mount is rated for less load, and it has a less beefy tripod than the Atlas.  If it were my decision to stick with the Sirius mount, I'd opt for an 8" SCT.  

 

Stan

My Sirius is on a 1300lb concrete pier (that big base goes down 3 more feet too).

 

30128996172_57b2aa31eb_z.jpgIMG_4303 by Martin Wise, on Flickr

 

It's mainly whether the Sirius can handle the weight if balanced properly. It doesn't have to be crazy accurate, as it's video & planets. Just well enough and without stressing out the mount to cause premature doom.

 

The C8 & C9.25 definitely are the smarter way to go, from a weight perspective for the mount. For sure. I simply had to ask others to see who else would risk going bigger on a smaller mount, in the context of just doing visual and common imaging (pretty picture, not going for super accuracy) of the big gas giants now and again with some pretty decent Florida seeing.

 

I guess it was good to ask as some are saying to go C11, while others are more cautious and say go smaller. I know its smarter to go smaller. It's why I have small scopes now. But, I had to ask and see, would it be a total waste of time to go bigger? And it seems pretty divided on that! That's quite interesting.

 

Very best,


Edited by MalVeauX, 25 August 2017 - 03:06 PM.

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#17 Bill Barlow

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 08:23 PM

You might get the C11 to see if the mount can handle it to your needs.  If not, sell it and use the money to get the C9.25.  At least you will know if the C11 would have worked or not.  The C11 will give you more of a "wow" factor than the C9.25 on most objects.

 

Bill


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#18 *skyguy*

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 08:31 PM

The Celestron 9.25" SCT is considered by many users to have the finest optics in the entire Celestron SCT line. The 9.25" scopes that I have observed with certainly supports these claims. However, some of the very finest planetary images I have seen have been taken through the Celestron 11" and  14" scopes. It's a tough call ... but I would go with C11 ... if your mount can handle the weight.


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#19 CounterWeight

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Posted 26 August 2017 - 12:13 PM

Martin,

That's a nice little pier you have there!, thanks for posting the pic. I think a permanent pier makes any mount better, or at least perform it's best.  At least you know if it's a mount issue, as there's no tripod or porta pier issues to consider. The Sirius is an impressive little mount (at least I thought so), it would be informative if you can get the C-11 to work for you and your applications.


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#20 Phil Barker

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Posted 26 August 2017 - 02:16 PM

I mounted my c11 on a pier.  It was a nexstar 11 and I got several years of very happy use in a 9 foot dome.

 

It was so easy to just walk in turn on the power and observe.  The fork mount was great for this.

 

Interestingly the pier survived the 2011 Canterbury earthquake mag 7.1.  I used epoxy resin to hold bolts in concrete to mount the wedge. 

 

It was in the backyard in a city of 400 000 views were good it wasn't a dark sky site the dome helped a lot.


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#21 gfstallin

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 04:02 PM

Martin,

 

Not to revive an old thread, but did you ever end up getting that C11 or C9.25? I have seen plenty of examples online of C11s and HEQ5s (Orion Sirius). There are even some decent planetary images on Astrobin with this combination, so people are certainly doing it.

 

George



#22 MalVeauX

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 04:27 PM

Martin,

 

Not to revive an old thread, but did you ever end up getting that C11 or C9.25? I have seen plenty of examples online of C11s and HEQ5s (Orion Sirius). There are even some decent planetary images on Astrobin with this combination, so people are certainly doing it.

 

George

 

Hi George,

 

I have not. A few hurricanes kept us a little busy and I didn't want to try to undertake a new scope until all that past.

 

I recently started researching again and added a fairly large 10" reflector as an option. But after reviewing things, I think an SCT will be the way to go.

 

So I'm still set on getting either an used C9.25 or an used C11. If I can swing for the C11 I will. If it doesn't work out, I can always re-sell it pretty easily. And then I'll know for sure that the C9.25 is the top instrument for my mount overall. But I think I will try to stretch to the C11, I'm just watching for good deals to get the most out of it that I can (even better if I find something in Florida that I can just go pick up).

 

Very best,


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