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Have $1200......What to buy

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#51 Daniel Mounsey

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 10:05 AM

Ironic though that people are this picky about optics and are discouraged to collimate a telescope as simple as an SCT. It's one of the most basic and fundamental procedures in observational astronomy. 



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Posted 15 March 2018 - 10:27 AM

Ironic though that people are this picky about optics and are discouraged to collimate a telescope as simple as an SCT. It's one of the most basic and fundamental procedures in observational astronomy. 

No, it's not ironic at all unless you're just going out of your way to personally attack people. Scopes perform worse when they fall out of collimation so if you care about optics you would rather this not happen. If you don't care about optics, you probably don't care about collimation at all.



#53 Patrick

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 10:49 AM

I think we may have scared the OP away!  He hasn't posted since the first page of this thread.smile.gif

 

Patrick



#54 carolinaskies

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 11:01 AM

 

 - One Barlow:  $100

 

I don't know what tracking platform Patrick owned but mine is transparent in use.  Resetting takes seconds . It's rock solid . 

 

 
 
Bingo
 
Jon

 

A $100 barlow in an F4.5 10" isn't going to get you much compared to an 180mm F15 Mak  without that barlow.    The highest most reasonable power on the fast 10" Newt is 180-200 without significant loss in detail or light with standard eyepieces, or you start forking out a lot more than $100.   The OP 10" is f4.5, to get the visual size of a planet into reasonable range where detail can start to be picked apart seriously the telescope is being pushed to the performance limits with diminishing results if in perfect seeing conditions.   

An 180mm F/15 Mak with 10mm eyepiece hasn't even begun to be pushed by the time that 10" F4.5 is trying a 10mm and Barlow to match magnification.  And the difference on something like say Mars...  the 10" with say an 4mm and barlow vs the Mak with barlow'd 10mm.   


Sure you can push a fast scope, but there are diminishing returns because a fast scope isn't optimized for narrow fields and requires more and more complex eyepieces/barlows to get performance.  John Dobson knew this, which is why he made longer FL big scopes.  It was easier to get great performance at the eypiece with longer FL eyepieces which were less demanding on the eye and pocketbook. 
 



#55 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 11:09 AM

I think the first one was a Round Table Platform, now out of production.  The second one is a wooden Equatorial Platform.  It looks like yours is an aluminum Equatorial Platform(?).

 

You do not get any additional sway at your eyepiece?  Not necessarily vibration, but a bit of sway?  Maybe the aluminum version is sturdier.

 

PS...regarding resetting, if you're star hopping like you have stated you like to do, your star alignment is not lost.  If however, you're using an object locator, resetting bonks everything up.  I've also had occasion where resetting caused the scope to slide precariously on the table, and if not being very careful, I've had occasion where I've actually slid the top of the table off the tracks of the lower one. Working in the dark at night when tired can be dangerous! lol.gif

 

Patrick

 

It is aluminium but a properly made wooden platform should be stable.  No sway .. 

 

This $1200 is for a planetary scope that tracks . An object locator is unnecessary. 

 

There are a number of options.  My point is that an equatorial platform shound not be dismissed.  Its a different approach and has it's own set of advantages and disadvantages . Easy setup and the ability to be used with multiple scopes of varying apertures is a plus for an eq platform.   Under 30 pounds are capable of handling an 18 inch scope is sweet .

 

Jon



#56 Daniel Mounsey

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 11:48 AM

No, it's not ironic at all unless you're just going out of your way to personally attack people. Scopes perform worse when they fall out of collimation so if you care about optics you would rather this not happen. If you don't care about optics, you probably don't care about collimation at all.

 

Really? Let me ask you a question. Have you compared all these telescopes and designs side by side on planets before?


Edited by Daniel Mounsey, 15 March 2018 - 11:50 AM.


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Posted 15 March 2018 - 12:23 PM

Really? Let me ask you a question. Have you compared all these telescopes and designs side by side on planets before?

Wow, you are just too easy lol.gif Yes I have. So that one didn't work either. I guess you'll just have to find another way to come at this from a completely personal angle smirk.gif



#58 Patrick

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 03:13 PM

It is aluminium but a properly made wooden platform should be stable.  No sway .. 

 

This $1200 is for a planetary scope that tracks . An object locator is unnecessary. 

 

There are a number of options.  My point is that an equatorial platform shound not be dismissed.  Its a different approach and has it's own set of advantages and disadvantages . Easy setup and the ability to be used with multiple scopes of varying apertures is a plus for an eq platform.   Under 30 pounds are capable of handling an 18 inch scope is sweet .

 

Jon

Well, I would think the Equatorial Platforms wooden model would be well built, but it still sways.  Oh well, each to his own.  I guess we all have our comfort levels. :-)

 

At any rate, the OP said whatever scope he got would be going on a CG-5.  But we haven't heard from the OP lately so I guess we're just talking to ourselves....hehe.

 

Patrick


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#59 CHASLX200

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 07:01 PM

A $100 barlow in an F4.5 10" isn't going to get you much compared to an 180mm F15 Mak  without that barlow.    The highest most reasonable power on the fast 10" Newt is 180-200 without significant loss in detail or light with standard eyepieces, or you start forking out a lot more than $100.   The OP 10" is f4.5, to get the visual size of a planet into reasonable range where detail can start to be picked apart seriously the telescope is being pushed to the performance limits with diminishing results if in perfect seeing conditions.   

An 180mm F/15 Mak with 10mm eyepiece hasn't even begun to be pushed by the time that 10" F4.5 is trying a 10mm and Barlow to match magnification.  And the difference on something like say Mars...  the 10" with say an 4mm and barlow vs the Mak with barlow'd 10mm.   


Sure you can push a fast scope, but there are diminishing returns because a fast scope isn't optimized for narrow fields and requires more and more complex eyepieces/barlows to get performance.  John Dobson knew this, which is why he made longer FL big scopes.  It was easier to get great performance at the eypiece with longer FL eyepieces which were less demanding on the eye and pocketbook. 
 

I don't know what 10" F/4.5 Newt we are talking about. But if i had a top notch 10" F/4.5 i would have no problem using 600x on my best nites.  If i could only get 200x out of it i would throw it away.  A 3mm Radian will do wonders in that fast Newt.



#60 carolinaskies

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 08:18 PM

I don't know what 10" F/4.5 Newt we are talking about. But if i had a top notch 10" F/4.5 i would have no problem using 600x on my best nites.  If i could only get 200x out of it i would throw it away.  A 3mm Radian will do wonders in that fast Newt.

You also happen to live in the Tampa area so have laminar airflow making high powers on planetary possible vs most places in the US with much more turbulent air columns.  So mileage on a 10" isn't going to be 600x for the majority of observers across the US on an average night.   

And most observers aren't going to be spending $300 on a single discontinued Radian eyepiece that won't be used regularly.   The majority of observing is going to be in that 200x range with an eyepiece that's less than $100.   Oh, and lets also stipulate we aren't talking about a $2000 10" telescope but rather the typical $650.   While it's nice to imagine every amateur is a Doctor with disposable income, the majority of us work within budgets that don't allow a case with 15 eyepieces whose value would pay our mortgages for 6mos.  
 



#61 CHASLX200

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 05:17 AM

You also happen to live in the Tampa area so have laminar airflow making high powers on planetary possible vs most places in the US with much more turbulent air columns.  So mileage on a 10" isn't going to be 600x for the majority of observers across the US on an average night.   

And most observers aren't going to be spending $300 on a single discontinued Radian eyepiece that won't be used regularly.   The majority of observing is going to be in that 200x range with an eyepiece that's less than $100.   Oh, and lets also stipulate we aren't talking about a $2000 10" telescope but rather the typical $650.   While it's nice to imagine every amateur is a Doctor with disposable income, the majority of us work within budgets that don't allow a case with 15 eyepieces whose value would pay our mortgages for 6mos.  
 

Well i am northwest of Tampa 28 miles.  But still anyone should get 350x on a better nite in most places.  You can buy Radians for under $150 now all the time.  They were never $300 smackers.



#62 WadeH237

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 08:57 AM

Sure you can push a fast scope, but there are diminishing returns because a fast scope isn't optimized for narrow fields and requires more and more complex eyepieces/barlows to get performance.  John Dobson knew this, which is why he made longer FL big scopes.  It was easier to get great performance at the eypiece with longer FL eyepieces which were less demanding on the eye and pocketbook. 

I'm not sure that I understand this comment.  Longer focal length eyepieces (at least good quality ones) are *far* more expensive than short focal length eyepieces.

 

That said, if someone is looking for a dedicated planetary scope, then a longer focal length and slower focal ratio are both appropriate.  Lunar and planetary viewing require lots of magnification and don't suffer from being excessively dim. I have heard very good things about a Royce Dall-Kirkham for planetary, but that would not be compatible with the OP's budget.

 

My normal recommendation for a $1200 OTA would be the EdgeHD 8, but given that the OP is looking for a dedicated planetary scope, I would take a close look at the Maks.  I also really like the idea of improving the mirror on the 10" Newt, but I am assuming that the OP wants tracking and/or the more compact packaging of a cassegrain.



#63 earlyriser

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 09:34 AM

 

My normal recommendation for a $1200 OTA would be the EdgeHD 8, but given that the OP is looking for a dedicated planetary scope, I would take a close look at the Maks.  I also really like the idea of improving the mirror on the 10" Newt, but I am assuming that the OP wants tracking and/or the more compact packaging of a cassegrain.

Could a CG5 carry the 10" Newtonian? If so, having the mirror refigured in the Newtonian might still be in play. Lately, I've been thinking it's better to have one scope with exceptional optics than a collection of off-the-shelf production models. So that is probably the route I'd go.

 

Anyway, lots of people use SCT's and Maks for planetary, so I'm sure a EdgeHD8, C9.25, or one of the 7-8 inch Maks would do just fine if compactness is an issue.



#64 Patrick

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 09:37 AM

A $100 barlow in an F4.5 10" isn't going to get you much compared to an 180mm F15 Mak  without that barlow.    The highest most reasonable power on the fast 10" Newt is 180-200 without significant loss in detail or light with standard eyepieces, or you start forking out a lot more than $100.   The OP 10" is f4.5, to get the visual size of a planet into reasonable range where detail can start to be picked apart seriously the telescope is being pushed to the performance limits with diminishing results if in perfect seeing conditions.   

 

huh??  10" Newt?  300x should be easy.  A good quality 2x barlow can be had for less than $100 (if that's the self imposed limit), plus an 8mm eyepiece will get you there.  You will have plenty of aperture to see your object, and the only limiting factor detail-wise will be your seeing conditions.  Sorry, I don't understand this comment.  300x is the workhorse range of this scope.

 

Peace.

 

Patrick


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#65 Patrick

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 09:45 AM

Could a CG5 carry the 10" Newtonian? If so, having the mirror refigured in the Newtonian might still be in play. Lately, I've been thinking it's better to have one scope with exceptional optics than a collection of off-the-shelf production models. So that is probably the route I'd go.

 

Anyway, lots of people use SCT's and Maks for planetary, so I'm sure a EdgeHD8, C9.25, or one of the 7-8 inch Maks would do just fine if compactness is an issue.

Celestron used to sell their CG-5 with a 10" Newt on it.  I had a chance to use one for an evening a few years ago.  The older gentlemen who owned it was so tired after setting it up he had to take a rest before using it.  It was a beastie.  The biggest problem was that it took a step stool to get to the eyepiece when the scope was pointing upward, and the eyepiece can get in very awkward positions in certain directions, necessitating rotating the scope in the tube rings.  Rotating a scope that big in the rings is no easy task.  On top of that, a scope of that size truly maxes out a CG5 and vibration when focusing is a real issue.

 

Bottom line...I wouldn't suggest it to anyone.  I would go back to an EQ platform before doing that!  (I suppose that's one reason I went to SCT's...much easier to use in large apertures.)

 

Patrick


Edited by Patrick, 16 March 2018 - 09:48 AM.

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#66 WadeH237

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 04:15 PM

Could a CG5 carry the 10" Newtonian? If so, having the mirror refigured in the Newtonian might still be in play. Lately, I've been thinking it's better to have one scope with exceptional optics than a collection of off-the-shelf production models. So that is probably the route I'd go.

 

Anyway, lots of people use SCT's and Maks for planetary, so I'm sure a EdgeHD8, C9.25, or one of the 7-8 inch Maks would do just fine if compactness is an issue.

I've never tried to put a 10" Newtonian on a CG-5, but I did own an LXD-75 for a while and tried it with a 10" Schmidt-Newtonian (which is a combination that Meade actually sold as a bundle).  It was terrifying.  Even though I had it well balanced, the mount was at the very limit of its capabilities.  During slews, any contact with the scope would set the whole thing to bouncing about.  Even more than the weight, I think that the moment arm was just beyond what the mount could deal with.  I would expect the CG-5 to be similar to the LXD-75 in capacity.

 

Also, I would never recommend that anyone put any Newtonian scope on a GEM unless that have rings that allow them to rotate the OTA.  The eyepiece ends up in some uncomfortable places otherwise.

 

Any of the Cassegrain scopes that you mention here should be fine for visual on a CG-5.



#67 Peter Besenbruch

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 04:56 PM

Could a CG5 carry the 10" Newtonian?

No. No! Nooooooooo!!!!! It's a bit much for the mount. ;)



#68 Cpk133

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 05:46 PM

Out of the scopes the op mentioned, for planets, I would never trade my 9.25 for one of those Maks, same for deep space and double stars.  I've yet to look through a regular commercial dob that beats it on Jupiter.  Is mine a fluke, or are all the standard Dobs I look through poorly figured, not collimated or not at thermal equilibrium?  I spent some time with a fellow CNer's 8" ZOC and it edged mine out on Mars, but surprisingly, it was very close on Jupiter on a night of very good seeing.  If ultimate planetary performance is the goal, it's hard to argue with the refiguring approach by a custom mirror maker.  I think that costs more than $1200 for a 10" no?  I've been thinking about buying that kind of a setup myself.  As far as edge vs std, when it comes to planets, don't waste your money.



#69 Mitrovarr

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 05:53 PM

If tracking is a major issue, he should sell the CG5 (or not buy it if he does not have it already) and sell his current 10", and replace it with a 10" Go2 Newt or buy a tracking platform.

None of these scopes are going to improve his view over the scope he already has.

The OP is undoubtedly being influenced by the "C 9.25s are Special" and "MCTs are Magic" Kool-aide. Anyone that has used all of these scopes on planets and compared them to a Zambuto 10" reflector will tell you that there is no comparison whatsoever.

And the only difference between his scope and the Zambuto scope is the quality of the mirror, and he can fix that for $800.

I think the OP is wasting money to buy these other telescopes if planetary is his passion.


I dunno. Dob tracking platforms... I've never seen anyone actually use one, even if they own one. They're just so big and so heavy and kind of science-experiment-y. I think they're an answer to the question "what could possibly be more work than constantly having to nudge your scope to follow an object". Plus, it will raise the eyepiece even higher off the ground, bad for viewing with kids.

#70 CHASLX200

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 06:01 PM

I'm not sure that I understand this comment.  Longer focal length eyepieces (at least good quality ones) are *far* more expensive than short focal length eyepieces.

 

That said, if someone is looking for a dedicated planetary scope, then a longer focal length and slower focal ratio are both appropriate.  Lunar and planetary viewing require lots of magnification and don't suffer from being excessively dim. I have heard very good things about a Royce Dall-Kirkham for planetary, but that would not be compatible with the OP's budget.

 

My normal recommendation for a $1200 OTA would be the EdgeHD 8, but given that the OP is looking for a dedicated planetary scope, I would take a close look at the Maks.  I also really like the idea of improving the mirror on the 10" Newt, but I am assuming that the OP wants tracking and/or the more compact packaging of a cassegrain.

None of that is right dwight. I had my best highest power views of the planets with sub f/4.5 11 to 18" Zambuto's and OMI scopes from 700x to 1150x.  Speed has nothing to do with great high power views of planets.  But speed comes with Coma and more fussy to collmation.




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