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CGX-L *OR* AP Mach1GTO *OR* Paramount MYTRED

astrophotography Celestron mount
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36 replies to this topic

#26 WadeH237

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Posted 22 March 2019 - 03:00 PM

Well then they should clarify that a C11 is no longer the limit to the mach 1, as recently as 2 months ago I still saw a post on AP's own forum saying 11" for mach 1 for imaging as a suggested upper limit. 

The ap-gto forum is not "AP's own forum".  They did not create it and they don't manage it.  It's also an unmoderated forum where anyone can say anything they like, and the comment will sit there essentially forever.  The staff and management of Astro-Physics are simply contributors.  You can cherry pick lots of interesting things there to take out of context to fit your narrative.  That's precisely why I provided a link to go and read the reference that I cited for yourself.

 

If you want to know their actual stated recommendations, then go to their web site.


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#27 gotak

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Posted 22 March 2019 - 08:40 PM

https://groups.yahoo...ns/topics/24484

 

From 2009 but still according to everything else about the 65lb change the mount was always capable of it so I expect that things shouldn't have change since 2009.



#28 orlyandico

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 03:14 AM

I think that AP's recommendations are overly conservative, to avoid unmet expectations. Which is why I was very surprised when they raised the maximum payload of the Mach1 from 45lb to 65lb.

 

But that said, the imaging payload is not just the weight of the OTA. Rings, dovetail plates, cameras, guide scope, motorized focuser, are all significant increases in weight.

 

The 27lb C11 will be close to 40lb after you've added all the extra stuff. I know my supposedly 22lb AT8IN was at pretty much 40lb with everything on it.



#29 dr.who

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 06:06 AM

 

Good point, I didn't know that.  I wouldn't want to deal with that either.

 

Stupid simple is what I'm looking for now.  No more fiddling for me!

 

Also, with Ken Sturrock's and your comments re: the Paramount and SkyX, I'm getting the sense the "philosophy" of SB mounts are drastically different, yet understandably still top notch, from what I am used to already.  Basically I'm looking for a simple, robust, plug-and-play mount.

 

Yes, I did know the 15lbs difference, but I did NOT know the 1/2 rule didn't apply to them.  I know the 1/2 rule is a general rule-of-thumb for most mounts, and I imagine it's to reduce the effort on the mount when they're prone to variations (e.g. beginner/intermediate mounts).  Is it not a rule with all high-end mounts?  And, if so, is it because AP, SB, 10Micron mounts are produced with such an assured quality that they are known to robustly handle that load capacity?

 

dr.who, your post is really great.  Thank you for taking the time to put all this down.  It's been helpful to nudge me in the direction of the Mach1.  I wasn't looking at the CEMs because I feel like I've read not so positive reviews about the CEM60 when passively researching, and the CEM120, being very new, is more expensive than the Mach1 or MYT when you include the encoders.

 

I'm actually sad about the CGX/-L.  It has so much potential if only the quality was assured during production.

 

Thanks again for your awesome post!

 

You’re welcome. You are right. The SB design philosophy is a good one. They produce a excellent mount with a tightly integrated feature rich, powerful and flexible software suite. AP also provides an excellent mount but their design philosophy is, in my opinion, to make a quality product that is very simple to use but highly accurate.

 

For me, the AP route was the best one and the mount does fade into the background. For several people I know, once they mastered the software the MyT does the same. Both just work. Other mounts don’t do that.

 

There were substantial problems with the CEM60 when it came out. And iOptron handled it very badly. They have since turned things around but that initial whoopsee sticks with me. SB had something similar with the MyT too. But both organizations stepped up in the end and made it right. 

 

The CGX series and the CEM series are mass produced mounts that are made to a certain price point. And that means variation in quality. Most will be good. Some will be excellent. And some will be rubbish. AP and SB are the same, save the price point is higher than the Celestrons or iOttons. Which means the majority are excellent with some that are good and a lot less that are rubbish. You get what you pay for.

 

in the high end mounts the stated weight is the imaging weight. With the caveat that the moment arm factors in too. In the lower end mounts it doesn’t work that way.



#30 Ron359

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 12:04 PM

You’re welcome. You are right. The SB design philosophy is a good one. They produce a excellent mount with a tightly integrated feature rich, powerful and flexible software suite. AP also provides an excellent mount but their design philosophy is, in my opinion, to make a quality product that is very simple to use but highly accurate.

 

For me, the AP route was the best one and the mount does fade into the background. For several people I know, once they mastered the software the MyT does the same. Both just work. Other mounts don’t do that.

 

There were substantial problems with the CEM60 when it came out. And iOptron handled it very badly. They have since turned things around but that initial whoopsee sticks with me. SB had something similar with the MyT too. But both organizations stepped up in the end and made it right. 

 

The CGX series and the CEM series are mass produced mounts that are made to a certain price point. And that means variation in quality. Most will be good. Some will be excellent. And some will be rubbish. AP and SB are the same, save the price point is higher than the Celestrons or iOttons. Which means the majority are excellent with some that are good and a lot less that are rubbish. You get what you pay for.

 

in the high end mounts the stated weight is the imaging weight. With the caveat that the moment arm factors in too. In the lower end mounts it doesn’t work that way.

Its sort of hinted at here, but you guys are really comparing BMW, Lincoln or Audi SUVs with a Ford F-150.  They are just not in the same price and quality basket.    So if you have the extra 'disposable money' and want to spend it on the higher end, basically hand-built car,  go for it. Otherwise a mass-produced light truck will still get you there and back with cup-holders, 4WD,  and still be several steps above an old VW beetle.   


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#31 dr.who

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 01:45 PM

Sure Ron. But that isn’t hinted at. At least by me. I am very clear on it. If your budget allows for it and you want the most highly probable “just works out of the box” getthe high end mount. If you can’t afford one, don’t want to wait and save for one, or don’t care/see the value in it then get a lower tier mount that blows your hair back. You get what you pay for. 

 

Also the car comparison doesn’t fit in my opinion. The reason is the high performance cars you mentioned tend to require very expensive maintenance and are known for being in the shop quite a bit. It is kind of the reverse with mounts. The F-150 price range mounts tend to be fiddle factories whereas the higher cost mounts just work and work well. 



#32 darrellx

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 03:25 PM

Darrell-

 

Glad to hear about the Esprit 150!  I'm dying to get one, but I must refrain until I have my mount "situation" resolved smile.gif  Post a photo of your Esprit 150 on your Mach1, I would love to see it!

 

Also, if you have an Astrobin profile, I would love to see some of the images you've captured with this setup.  I won't hold your Aussie targets against you tongue2.gif ...j/k, I'm in Sydney and Melbourne a few times / year for work...your dark skies from the bush must be amazing!!

I have attached a few pics for you.  The two in the backyard were taken when I was first setting up.  The configuration has changed a bit since then - different guidescope; I don't use the finder scope; I don't use the diagonal (only AP); and I don't use the Keypad (Laptop and APCC).    By way of comparison thats an EQ6 Pro with a William Optics Megrez90.

 

I thought I would throw in a pic with the Observatory.  It doesn't show much, but I really like my Observatory.

 

Darrell

Attached Thumbnails

  • Mach1_EQ6.jpg

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#33 darrellx

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 03:28 PM

Here are the other pics.  I thought I had made them small enough to meet the size limits.

 

Darrell

Attached Thumbnails

  • Mach1-Dome.jpg
  • Mach1-Esprit.jpg


#34 Stelios

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 03:52 PM

All I can say, is that if you can remotely stretch to a Mach1, do so. (And you need neither the handcontrol nor the RAPAS for imaging).  

 

It was an agonizing purchase for me, because it was way more than I had wanted to spend (it came to about $7,700 shipped with a tripod (3rd party--Avalon T-110), mounting hardware, 3x9 + 1x6 CW's and APCC standard and PemPro). Plus I was trying to make up my mind between MyT and Mach1.

 

I have been using the Mach1 for almost two years. I have zero regrets. People keep talking about the carrying capacity--well, carrying capacity (and the Mach1 has plenty) is not the reason why you buy this mount. There are more beastly mounts out there. Nor are the aesthetics, although it's a beautiful mount. But there are so many little things that just make imaging SO much easier.

 

Like the rotating base that makes PA a breeze.

Like the through-the-mount cabling that eliminates all the dragging cable worries and/or hub obsolescence worries.

Like being able to balance it to within an ounce or so.

Like not needing to worry about East-heavy.

Like being able to just slew to a target after just PA and have it be close enough for plate-solving (not blind!) to work every single time, with no more than a 2nd try to be within 10px.

Like being able to start with CW's in *up* position for those who dislike meridian flips.

Like never worrying if meridian flip will work, for those who *like* meridian flips.

Like having built-in wifi so you can control it with your smartphone and Luminos or Sky Safari.

Like having *knowledgeable* and *quick* customer support for the few cases when you may need it. 

 

I am always the first one to start imaging on any night. I polar-align with Sharpcap (2 mins), slew to one star near meridian and equator to focus main camera and calibrate PhD2 (about 5 mins), and then I have SGP start the target and go to sleep. I used to worry about going to sleep because of possible glitches with guiding, etc. I no longer do. There just aren't any.



#35 DuncanM

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 04:27 PM

All I can say, is that if you can remotely stretch to a Mach1, do so. (And you need neither the handcontrol nor the RAPAS for imaging).  

 

It was an agonizing purchase for me, because it was way more than I had wanted to spend (it came to about $7,700 shipped with a tripod (3rd party--Avalon T-110), mounting hardware, 3x9 + 1x6 CW's and APCC standard and PemPro). Plus I was trying to make up my mind between MyT and Mach1.

 

I have been using the Mach1 for almost two years. I have zero regrets. People keep talking about the carrying capacity--well, carrying capacity (and the Mach1 has plenty) is not the reason why you buy this mount. There are more beastly mounts out there. Nor are the aesthetics, although it's a beautiful mount. But there are so many little things that just make imaging SO much easier.

 

Like the rotating base that makes PA a breeze.

Like the through-the-mount cabling that eliminates all the dragging cable worries and/or hub obsolescence worries.

Like being able to balance it to within an ounce or so.

Like not needing to worry about East-heavy.

Like being able to just slew to a target after just PA and have it be close enough for plate-solving (not blind!) to work every single time, with no more than a 2nd try to be within 10px.

Like being able to start with CW's in *up* position for those who dislike meridian flips.

Like never worrying if meridian flip will work, for those who *like* meridian flips.

Like having built-in wifi so you can control it with your smartphone and Luminos or Sky Safari.

Like having *knowledgeable* and *quick* customer support for the few cases when you may need it. 

 

I am always the first one to start imaging on any night. I polar-align with Sharpcap (2 mins), slew to one star near meridian and equator to focus main camera and calibrate PhD2 (about 5 mins), and then I have SGP start the target and go to sleep. I used to worry about going to sleep because of possible glitches with guiding, etc. I no longer do. There just aren't any.

CEM60:

 

Like the rotating base that makes PA a breeze. [?]

Like the through-the-mount cabling that eliminates all the dragging cable worries and/or hub obsolescence worries. [Yes]

Like being able to balance it to within an ounce or so. [Yes - via gear switches = full on or full off and no resistance balancing ]

Like not needing to worry about East-heavy. [Yes - floating worm for full contact]

Like being able to just slew to a target after just PA and have it be close enough for plate-solving (not blind!) to work every single time, with no more than a 2nd try to be within 10px. [[Yes, I do that routinely - built in GPS helps]

Like being able to start with CW's in *up* position for those who dislike meridian flips. [firmware under development, IIRC but mount is a factor]

Like never worrying if meridian flip will work, for those who *like* meridian flips. [never had a problem]

Like having built-in wifi so you can control it with your smartphone and Luminos or Sky Safari. [CEM120 has wifi]

Like having *knowledgeable* and *quick* customer support for the few cases when you may need it.[ Mostly]



#36 Ken Sturrock

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 04:39 PM

Yeah, everyone loves what they have (or at least what they decided to keep for now) and we all went through an eminently logical process before dropping coin.

 

I think that most of the higher-end modern mounts have a pretty similar feature set. They have all evolved to meet a set of needs and, in some cases, have borrowed ideas from each other, and from the same sources. The way that each mount goes about its functions is a bit different, however, but you're probably not going to pick a loser in this price bracket.


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#37 scopenitout

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Posted 24 March 2019 - 10:15 AM

Yeah, everyone loves what they have (or at least what they decided to keep for now) and we all went through an eminently logical process before dropping coin.

I think that most of the higher-end modern mounts have a pretty similar feature set. They have all evolved to meet a set of needs and, in some cases, have borrowed ideas from each other, and from the same sources. The way that each mount goes about its functions is a bit different, however, but you're probably not going to pick a loser in this price bracket.


Ken: The Voice of Reason. And this is how these threads usually, and should, wind up. As a very satisfied owner of two Paramounts, it's a given that the quality is commensurate with the price, as are the features and performance. After you've used a high-end mount for awhile, they work so well, you just forget about the mount. Gives you time to concentrate on other stuff, like which Gain setting you should use. :)


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