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What is a good mount for astrophotography on a budget?

astrophotography mount
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#51 Dimitrij

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 10:42 AM

Thank you guys for the advice, I am going to wait a while and look for good used mounts that are better for astrophotography, the AVX and CEM25 both look like good mounts.



#52 Dimitrij

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 09:39 PM

Are mounts that are not computerized but are equatorial mounts good for a beginner? I've seen many people get good photos with mounts like these but I just imagine it must be very hard to position it correctly

#53 zxx

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 11:33 PM

Are mounts that are not computerized but are equatorial mounts good for a beginner? I've seen many people get good photos with mounts like these but I just imagine it must be very hard to position it correctly

Goto is not necessary for AP, I have a CGEM DX and never use it because of all the trees in my yard, I have one small section of sky looking east.  When it gets cold I can't read the display screen. I can find the target with my finder scope faster then I can calibrate the goto.



#54 Dimitrij

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 06:25 AM

How easy is it to see the target through the finder scope?

#55 Hesiod

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 07:28 AM

Well, in most cases you will not see the target itself, but other bright stars/objects nearby.
It is easier than it seems, especially if have at hand a decent chart and take a night to learn how equatorial coordinates work
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#56 Dimitrij

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 07:39 AM

Okay, thanks!



#57 zxx

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 08:41 AM

How easy is it to see the target through the finder scope?

The bright targets are easy, I use Stellarium .



#58 droe

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 08:57 AM

I think the best mount under $1000 in the AVX. It gets no respect on CN but I use mine for AP and a 80mm refractor and it works great. If down the road you desire greater performance, get it hypertuned. If you want to get a bigger scope then you may need to get a bigger mount. Search astrobin for AVX images to see what's possible.

 

sml_gallery_245739_7234_64080.jpg


Edited by droe, 17 October 2019 - 09:05 AM.

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#59 zxx

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 10:40 AM

I know where you're at , do I buy the cheapest EQ mount that can work in the $400 range, or save up for a mount with full goto in the $900 to $1400 price range. You do get what you pay for. Though with the scope you want at 360mm you can still have fun and get good results with the cheaper mount. 



#60 Dimitrij

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 08:22 PM

I know where you're at , do I buy the cheapest EQ mount that can work in the $400 range, or save up for a mount with full goto in the $900 to $1400 price range. You do get what you pay for. Though with the scope you want at 360mm you can still have fun and get good results with the cheaper mount. 

Okay, thanks for the help, right now it seems like I might get the skyguider pro or the AVX


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#61 tonyt

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 09:57 PM

Orange County Telescope sells the AVX with a $139 tune-up option where a bearing is replaced and the mount is adjusted; reviews of the upgrade are positive: https://www.cloudyni...nt-now-offered/

 

I'd go with that option if I lived in the US.


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#62 reynolm217

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 12:43 AM

Dimitrij, I have the Zenith Star 61 with the Flat 61 field flattener that I use with my DSLR camera for AP.  For this set-up, I use a Sky-Watcher Star Adventurer.  I have been getting great results with this mount.  I am relatively new to the hobby as well, and I feel that I am really learning the night sky with the manual RA and dec positioning required with the Star Adventurer.  In near future I'd like to get a GOTO equatorial mount (currently looking at the EQM-35 or the CEM25P) for some slightly longer focal-length shots.  But I'm having a lot of fun locating DSO's with Stellarium and then pointing the mount manually.  I can get 2 minute subs with a good polar alignment without guiding.  And I think you'll be happy with that scope; I totally agree that starting out at a small focal-length is a wise choice, not to mention the Z61 really is an incredible scope.  I've used it for visual as well as AP.     



#63 Dimitrij

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 09:09 AM

Dimitrij, I have the Zenith Star 61 with the Flat 61 field flattener that I use with my DSLR camera for AP.  For this set-up, I use a Sky-Watcher Star Adventurer.  I have been getting great results with this mount.  I am relatively new to the hobby as well, and I feel that I am really learning the night sky with the manual RA and dec positioning required with the Star Adventurer.  In near future I'd like to get a GOTO equatorial mount (currently looking at the EQM-35 or the CEM25P) for some slightly longer focal-length shots.  But I'm having a lot of fun locating DSO's with Stellarium and then pointing the mount manually.  I can get 2 minute subs with a good polar alignment without guiding.  And I think you'll be happy with that scope; I totally agree that starting out at a small focal-length is a wise choice, not to mention the Z61 really is an incredible scope.  I've used it for visual as well as AP.     

Thank you so much for this, I think it is more helpful to see experience with the equipment and it is important. I think it would be nice to use one like this because I will learn more about the night sky and I want to do that. I care about the results, I don't care how hard the process is so I really believe this is a good mount for me.



#64 zxx

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 12:09 PM

I believe you still need to buy a tripod with the Star Adventurer, For about the same cost you can get the CG-4 and drive kit. https://www.bhphotov...CG_4_Mount.html

 

This mount has been around a while and is built like a tank. I was getting 60s exposures unguided with my ED80 at 600mm fl . You can add a guide port for guiding and it's also a great visual mount with a weight capacity of 20lbs. total weight of mount, tripod and weights around 35lbs

 

You also should have a look at this thread https://www.cloudyni...-pmc-eight-399/


Edited by zxx, 18 October 2019 - 01:57 PM.


#65 Dimitrij

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 07:41 AM

Okay thank you, what is the drive kit? (Sorry I'm new to this so I on't know a lot about it)



#66 zxx

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 08:01 AM

Okay thank you, what is the drive kit? (Sorry I'm new to this so I on't know a lot about it)

https://www.bhphotov..._Dual_Axis.html

 

You will want a polar scope, so total cost would be around $450. I see the AVX is $799 now, normally $899. It was on sale last year for $699  a better mount for a few hundred more. But there are good copy's and bad copy's . If I bought a new AVX I would want to hook an auto guider to it and see what I have before the warranty was up.

 

The new Skywatcher EQM 35 looks like it may track, guide better then the AVX with the 180 tooth RA gear.

I believe sells for $699


Edited by zxx, 21 October 2019 - 09:03 AM.


#67 Hesiod

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 08:15 AM

To add the autoguider interface you need some skill with electronics.
Skywatcher sell a dual-drive kit with an st4-type interface for their version of the mount (called eq3):
https://www.teleskop...uider-Port.html
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#68 AhBok

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 08:22 AM

Almost any driven mount is capable of some kind of AP. I used a home made barn door tracker with a 50mm lens and DSLR and was quite happy with my images. The key to using a low end mount is to find the combination of weight and focal length that works. If I could only afford an EQ1, for example, I’d still take planetary images if it is driven and Milky Way images if it was not. If I could not afford a mount, I’d take images with a tripod. There is always a way to enjoy this hobby without hard and fast rules of what can and cannot be done.
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#69 zxx

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 09:15 AM

To add the autoguider interface you need some skill with electronics.
Skywatcher sell a dual-drive kit with an st4-type interface for their version of the mount (called eq3):
https://www.teleskop...uider-Port.html

I found this HC a few years ago without the drives, definitely a better option .



#70 zxx

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 09:55 AM

I found this HC a few years ago without the drives, definitely a better option .

Then again I have no skill with electronics but found this mod vary simple.

 

http://www.store.sho....com/eq_mod.pdf



#71 Hesiod

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 10:23 AM

Yes, they sell also the HC for those already owning the drives.
I have always believed that for short focals the dual drive kit is more interesting than the Synscan kit.
In general terms the possibility to choose between both options is a great feature of eq3 and eq5 mounts
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#72 zxx

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 10:45 AM

Yes, they sell also the HC for those already owning the drives.
I have always believed that for short focals the dual drive kit is more interesting than the Synscan kit.
In general terms the possibility to choose between both options is a great feature of eq3 and eq5 mounts

My CG-4 guides almost as well as my CGEM DX with ED80 , that's with the HC mod on the drive kit.

 

Capture cg4.PNG




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