Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

ETX125 or Astroview?

  • Please log in to reply
23 replies to this topic

#1 daslolo

daslolo

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2020
  • Loc: Camano Island

Posted 18 January 2020 - 03:34 PM

I have the chance to have a Meade ETX125 8" for $300 or a Orion 9024 AstroView 90mm for 270$

Matsukov vs Refractor

I want to look at planets and maybe, if I can find a alpha-Hydrogen that's affordable (haha), the sun's structures.

Which one do you recommend?



#2 petert913

petert913

    Soyuz

  • *****
  • Posts: 3,745
  • Joined: 27 May 2013
  • Loc: Portland, OR

Posted 18 January 2020 - 03:37 PM

I believe the ETX125 is a 5" (125mm) Mak.  125mm aperture is better than 90mm for light gathering IMO.


  • ShaulaB and vdog like this

#3 Jon Isaacs

Jon Isaacs

    ISS

  • *****
  • Posts: 81,829
  • Joined: 16 Jun 2004
  • Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA

Posted 18 January 2020 - 04:25 PM

Daslolo:

 

Hello and :welcome: to Cloudy Nights.

 

I'd go with the ETX-125. The refractor is an achromat so it will show chromatic aberration, not good for viewing the moon and planet's. It's also smaller in terms of aperture which reduces the resolution and light gathering.

 

The ETX-125 is a lunar-planetary scope.

 

Jon


  • elwaine, ShaulaB, midwestastronomer and 1 other like this

#4 aeajr

aeajr

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 13,342
  • Joined: 26 Jun 2015
  • Loc: Long Island, New York, USA

Posted 18 January 2020 - 05:03 PM

Like anything else, it depends on what you want to do with the scope. For Planets I would definitely prefer the ETX 125. Is it a current model or an old one?

The current ETX 125 Observer sells for about $700 and is an F15 127 mm/5" GoTo Mak on a fork mount. Very nice optics and well suited for planets, solar, splitting double stars and other medium to high mag applications.

If it is an older ETX 125 AT ( I have one) is still an F15 127 mm/5" Mak. Older models were on a fork mount but were not GoTo. Later models could have the GoTo hand set added and finally the included the GoTo handset as standard. I have the 125 AT with the GoTo handset.

The GoTo mount is dedicated to that optical tube. You can't slip other scopes onto the Goto mount. However you can defork the ETX optical tube, put a dove tail on it and use it on other mounts. I have done that. It is not quick so you would not remove it and swap to a different mount during an observing session.

If the mount works and the optics are intact it is a nice scope. The tripod is very robust. I would prefer this one.

I presume this is the Orion. The Orion is an F10 achromat on a manual Equatorial mount. I don't know that mount but I always ask if people know how to use an equatorial mount. Some love them and some find them confusing.
https://www.amazon.c...r/dp/B0000XMSKC

An F10 achromat is not bad for planets. It will show come chromatic aberration, but I would expect at F10 that it won't be too bad. Should work fine for planets and the like. Because of the shorter focal length it has the potential to present a wider field of view for other DSOs, but I would prefer the 5" Mak for planets.

Edited by aeajr, 18 January 2020 - 08:55 PM.


#5 elwaine

elwaine

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,257
  • Joined: 18 Jun 2006
  • Loc: Sugar Land, TX

Posted 18 January 2020 - 06:12 PM

Welcome to Cloudy Nights.

 

Which Meade 125 ETX are you referring to? In any case, just be aware that the GoTo drives of an ETX can be a little frustrating. Then again, the cheap mount that comes with the inexpensive refractor is bound to suffer from vibrations, and that will be just as frustrating... if not more so.  

 

The views you will get of the Planets and the Moon through the ETX will be WAY better than those through the 90mm achro-refractor. I had a 125mm ETX. Sorry I sold it even though I now have a fabulous 180mm TEC Mak.



#6 daslolo

daslolo

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2020
  • Loc: Camano Island

Posted 18 January 2020 - 10:09 PM

Thanks everyone. Tomorrow I'll see which version of the ETX that is.

 

Perhaps a bit of history is needed and maybe I need to broaden my horizon and my budget or I'll be disapointed.

 

Long ago, I had a NEXTAR GPS 9.25 XLT, the one with the carbon tube which optic was supposed to be legendary. I didn't like it one bit. Everything had a blurry colored fringe, even factory colimated, and the image was washed out. This made me double guess reflectors

 

The ETX is way cheaper so I'm wondering if it'll have that same washed out look.



#7 Jon Isaacs

Jon Isaacs

    ISS

  • *****
  • Posts: 81,829
  • Joined: 16 Jun 2004
  • Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA

Posted 19 January 2020 - 04:41 AM

If it is an older ETX 125 AT ( I have one) is still an F15 127 mm/5" Mak. Older models were on a fork mount but were not GoTo. Later models could have the GoTo hand set added and finally the included the GoTo handset as standard. I have the 125 AT with the GoTo handset.

 

 

Are you sure about that?  There was an ETX-90 RA which was a table top mount with RA drive but I never saw a ETX-125 that could not be upgraded to a 497 Handcontoller. The ETX 125 I had was one of the earlier ones..

 

Uncle Rod' S Used SCT Buyers Guide only discusses a GOTO version of the 125.

 

It's a good read for anyone considering a second hand SCT or Mak.

 

https://skywatch.bra...ed/used_sct.pdf

 

Jon


  • halx likes this

#8 aeajr

aeajr

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 13,342
  • Joined: 26 Jun 2015
  • Loc: Long Island, New York, USA

Posted 19 January 2020 - 06:12 AM

Apparently I did not state it well. You are right Jon. All ETX125 could have the goto handset added. The early ones did not include the goto handset. Later packages did.
  • Jon Isaacs likes this

#9 aeajr

aeajr

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 13,342
  • Joined: 26 Jun 2015
  • Loc: Long Island, New York, USA

Posted 19 January 2020 - 06:18 AM

Thanks everyone. Tomorrow I'll see which version of the ETX that is.

Perhaps a bit of history is needed and maybe I need to broaden my horizon and my budget or I'll be disapointed.

Long ago, I had a NEXTAR GPS 9.25 XLT, the one with the carbon tube which optic was supposed to be legendary. I didn't like it one bit. Everything had a blurry colored fringe, even factory colimated, and the image was washed out. This made me double guess reflectors

The ETX is way cheaper so I'm wondering if it'll have that same washed out look.

The optics on the 125 are very good but so are the Celestron 9.25. I have to wonder about your expectations, light pollution levels, seeing and transparency. Are you aware of how these factors affect what you see?

What are your expectations? A 9.25/235 mm should blow away the 125 mm.

Edited by aeajr, 19 January 2020 - 06:20 AM.

  • Jon Isaacs and daslolo like this

#10 daslolo

daslolo

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2020
  • Loc: Camano Island

Posted 20 January 2020 - 07:04 PM

The optics on the 125 are very good but so are the Celestron 9.25. I have to wonder about your expectations, light pollution levels, seeing and transparency. Are you aware of how these factors affect what you see?

What are your expectations? A 9.25/235 mm should blow away the 125 mm.

Saturated color and crisp image, off course wink.gif

It was setup in the Mojave desert, night so crisp that you were in the milky way.



#11 Jon Isaacs

Jon Isaacs

    ISS

  • *****
  • Posts: 81,829
  • Joined: 16 Jun 2004
  • Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA

Posted 21 January 2020 - 07:54 AM

Saturated color and crisp image, off course wink.gif

It was setup in the Mojave desert, night so crisp that you were in the milky way.

 

Color:  Very subtle even in a 20 inch plus scope. 

 

Crispness: Sharpness.  This is seeing, atmospheric stability. The Mojave is not known for excellent seeing.

 

Thermal management is critical with reflectors, sharp views are, in part, the result of attention to cooling the scope

 

You use a scope 20 years, you learn its needs and foibles. Some nights will be amazingly perfect, most nights will have issues of some sort.  

 

It's not the scope, it's the conditions.

 

That was a difficult lesson for me to learn.  

 

Jon


  • chazcheese likes this

#12 Taylor

Taylor

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,305
  • Joined: 10 Jul 2005
  • Loc: Owasso, OK

Posted 21 January 2020 - 11:51 AM

I wonder if your 9.25 had issues? 

 

Mine is out of this world good, the views are incredible, and its easy to collimate. 

 

I have an ETX 90 and 125. They both needed a little tuneup, using easy walk throughs available on Weasner's ETX site. If you follow the directions to a T from this guide, http://astrosurf.com...d/GuideBook.pdf, you will get great results from it. I have an electric focuser on both of them, they can be jittery with high mag viewing when trying to focus. 



#13 daslolo

daslolo

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2020
  • Loc: Camano Island

Posted 21 January 2020 - 11:22 PM

Maybe I jumped to astrophotography too soon and was expecting Nasa quality without overly sharpening the stack, in the eyepiece I remember jupiter was a blur and the moon had a lot of chromatic aberration and was blurry no matter the focus. it might be atmospheric conditions but those nights the desert was very dry. I doubt it was a bad unit because it was fresh from the shop where they fixed a few things.

 

Anyways it's ages ago, I don't have that 925 anymore and I'm no longer interested in astrophotography so perhaps a dobson light bucket is what the doctor recommend.



#14 aeajr

aeajr

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 13,342
  • Joined: 26 Jun 2015
  • Loc: Long Island, New York, USA

Posted 21 January 2020 - 11:34 PM

You still need to deal with your expectations.  

 

Saturated color and crisp image, off course wink.gif

It was setup in the Mojave desert, night so crisp that you were in the milky way.

 

 

You will not even approach that in an eyepiece.  I got the smile and the wink but still have no idea what you are expecting to see.   If you found a 9.25" disappointing, a 5 or 6" will really disappoint.

 

What you will see will look nothing like the images produced by long term exposures or multiple images stacked in a computer. 


  • Old Man likes this

#15 daslolo

daslolo

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2020
  • Loc: Camano Island

Posted 22 January 2020 - 05:29 AM

i watched a guy process a stack and now i understand that those spectacular photographies of celestial bodies are instagram beauty shots

 

 now that i'm aware of that, here is my (and my gf) desire:

 seeing orion much brighter than with the naked eye

 seeing saturn rings crisp

 and seeing the sun details this part needs special filters



#16 RaulTheRat

RaulTheRat

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 674
  • Joined: 09 Oct 2018

Posted 22 January 2020 - 05:50 AM

For the sun you'll want a refractor that's about f/7 if you intend to use a Daystar quark which is the most affordable way to get into h-alpha solar with a reasonable aperture, however you don't want a big refractor because a long focal length will be disappointing with a quark for visual - dim and blurry (because the seeing is bad in the day) - you really want something like a 70mm refractor with a focal length not much more than 400mm, it can be an achromat (you don't need an expensive apochromatic scope with a quark since you're only trying to focus one single wavelength of light).

For the planets and Orion, you'll want more aperture and focal length than that.

So really you're looking for two scopes. The quark is not cheap, so if there's a setup to leave for now it's the solar one, especially since it is only one object (albeit one you can often observe) and the sun is still quiet and you could get a solar setup in a year or two and see more activity then there is now on the sun. You should also look at the Lunt solar scopes, the quark is good value but there are other options for sure which are arguably much better for visual however they are not cheap.

A maksutov will do well on planets, but the focal length will be long, this means the mount needs to be stable (the etx may be ok, but they aren't the most solid mount ever) and the field of view will be small - Orion is very large in the sky and although you will be able to observe it, you may not fit it all in the field easily in a maksutov.

Of the scopes you mentioned the etx is definitely the better all round beginner scope imo and will give you nice planetary and lunar views as well as showing you some deep sky objects if used in a dark place.

#17 Jon Isaacs

Jon Isaacs

    ISS

  • *****
  • Posts: 81,829
  • Joined: 16 Jun 2004
  • Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA

Posted 22 January 2020 - 08:04 AM

Maybe I jumped to astrophotography too soon and was expecting Nasa quality without overly sharpening the stack, in the eyepiece I remember jupiter was a blur and the moon had a lot of chromatic aberration and was blurry no matter the focus. it might be atmospheric conditions but those nights the desert was very dry. I doubt it was a bad unit because it was fresh from the shop where they fixed a few things.

 

Anyways it's ages ago, I don't have that 925 anymore and I'm no longer interested in astrophotography so perhaps a dobson light bucket is what the doctor recommend.

 

The dryness has nothing to do with the blurry images.  At the zenith, a 9.25 inch telescope is looking through a column of air that 9.25 inches in diameter and at least 60 miles long. Unless that air column is very steady, it will be like looking through a mirage.  

 

As you look at lower and lower elevations, things get worse, much worse.  Generally people avoid looking at anything below about 30 degrees elevation.  

 

The stability of the atmosphere is referred to as the seeing.  Nights of excellent seeing are generally quite rare and are treasured because of the images they provide.  

 

The desert, the skies can be transparent and dark but the seeing is a different issue and usually the seeing is better near the coast than in the desert.

 

Jon



#18 Taylor

Taylor

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,305
  • Joined: 10 Jul 2005
  • Loc: Owasso, OK

Posted 22 January 2020 - 11:00 AM

i watched a guy process a stack and now i understand that those spectacular photographies of celestial bodies are instagram beauty shots

 

 now that i'm aware of that, here is my (and my gf) desire:

 seeing orion much brighter than with the naked eye

 seeing saturn rings crisp

 and seeing the sun details this part needs special filters

The ETX-125 can make you see Saturn in good detail. Its high focal length and 5" aperture make it a great lunar/planetary/double star scope. Most air columns are greater than 5" in diameter, so seeing will affect it less than an >8" scope. 

You won't be able to fit all of the Orion nebula into its field of view though, it is better suited to compact DSOs like globulars. 

 

For M42 and other spread out DSOs, an 8" dob would be beneficial. They will need collimation though.



#19 daslolo

daslolo

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2020
  • Loc: Camano Island

Posted 22 January 2020 - 09:22 PM

Thanks folks.

Now I'm looking up giant binoculars.



#20 Jeff Struve

Jeff Struve

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Moderators
  • Posts: 4,538
  • Joined: 05 Nov 2010
  • Loc: Iowa, USA

Posted 23 January 2020 - 10:57 AM

Where are you located?



#21 daslolo

daslolo

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2020
  • Loc: Camano Island

Posted 23 January 2020 - 04:01 PM

Northern Washington, so yeah, tons of clouds, I take my time



#22 SeattleScott

SeattleScott

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • Posts: 6,881
  • Joined: 14 Oct 2011

Posted 23 January 2020 - 07:57 PM

Don’t forget a mount for those giant binos.

Looks like January will be a stargazing shutout. I just keep telling myself Australia would love to have our weather right now.

EAA would allow for some color of DSO without the hassle of full blown AP, but it is low res so not overly sharp.

Scott

#23 daslolo

daslolo

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2020
  • Loc: Camano Island

Posted 23 January 2020 - 10:27 PM

Don’t forget a mount for those giant binos.

Looks like January will be a stargazing shutout. I just keep telling myself Australia would love to have our weather right now.

EAA would allow for some color of DSO without the hassle of full blown AP, but it is low res so not overly sharp.

Scott

the blue mountains didn't burn I hope ... checking... oh f******ck! 80% of this beauty up in smoke!!

 

EAA would allow for some color of DSO without the hassle of full blown AP, but it is low res so not overly sharp.

what's AP?

I've been looking up EAA and I thought too that it wasn't highres enough but @eddgie pointed out that 60lp/mm is higher than nocturnal vision so in reality it matches the eye.

On the other hand, digital EAA like the Aurora are lower res and more importatnly far too noisy in very low light condition. Perhaps this is the cutout aperture increase that such cheap night vision offer.


Edited by daslolo, 23 January 2020 - 10:30 PM.


#24 midwestastronomer

midwestastronomer

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 44
  • Joined: 04 Feb 2018

Posted 29 January 2020 - 01:20 PM

ETX 125 is nice for bright globs, like M13, M5, M92. I once had an amazing view of M22 in an ETX 125 at a dark sky site. 




CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics