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AP rig for €2k?

beginner accessories astrophotography dslr equipment imaging refractor mount eq
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#1 yesjo1


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Posted 24 November 2020 - 03:00 PM



I'm a new astronomy fan! I currently have 15x70 binoculars and I love photographing the moon and other objects like mars, jupiter and saturn through it (i have a binocular adapter for my phone (I followed astrobiscuit's video/example, and I've been doing it for a couple of weeks now)). I also really like observing, but I think it's not the best idea to combine the two.


Cutting to the chase, I want to get an astrophotography rig for €2.000,00,-. I live in the Netherlands so I can use german resources like teleskop-express.de, amazon, and ofcourse astroshop.eu. If there are any other resources I don't know of, please let me know!

Obviously, I have done my fair share of research already but I would love suggestions. currently looking to spend about 1100 on an equatorial GoTo mount, to futureproof at least that part of the rig a little bit, 600-700 on the telescope, as I want it to be an 80mm APO triplet refractor, 300 on a DSLR camera and 300 on other accessories...  wait, ****, that's over budget. Please help!!!


I've been looking at refurbished camera's, and I can get a canon 5d mark 2 with 200k+ clicks for 300, or something with a little less wear on it. I'm a complete virgin to like all of everything astronomy and photography: but I'm so very excited to start my journey. I'm learning about a lot of things already like constellations, celestial poles, certain stars, galaxies, gathering resources for more information, mailing my local astronomy club for advice and/or if they have 2nd hand stuff (here in the Netherlands I haven't found many good resources for 2nd hand astronomy stuff.


There's so many things to do but I think getting more input on my future rig would help a lot!

#2 Jerry Lodriguss

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Posted 24 November 2020 - 10:26 PM

Welcome to the hobby!


That's a good budget to get started with.


So, you are saying that you want to do high-resolution planetary imaging with this telescope?


That is quite different than long-exposure deep-sky photography of galaxies and nebulae.


So, you would need two completely different setups.


An 80mm refractor will not really work at all for high-resolution planetary imaging.  It would be more for deepsky. 


If you want to do deepsky, then get a used Skywatcher HEQ5 or 6, an 80mm refractor, and a Nikon D5300.


I have some tips for getting started in astrophotography, and pay attention to the accessories you might need in calculating your budget. You will need more than just a mount, scope and camera.



Edited by Jerry Lodriguss, 24 November 2020 - 10:27 PM.

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#3 yesjo1


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Posted 25 November 2020 - 04:27 AM

Hello Jerry


Thanks for responding first of all!
I would like to do deep-sky! The only problem I'm currently facing is that I need an 80mm ED APO triplet. While there are a couple out there, most of them are €600, and if I'm spending 1100 on the HEQ5, that's a combined total of €1700. This is icky, because most of the camera's I'm looking at are around the 280 mark. That would mean I'm going over budget. Obviously, I have some extra to spend, but I'm not so willing to use that. Is there any option that doesn't make me go over budget, or do I get a cheaper, lighter weight, lighter capacity mount? Or should I maybe just get a doublet refractor? I've seen pictures with doublet refractors, and the stars are blue which isn't that bad, I guess..

#4 alphatripleplus


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Posted 25 November 2020 - 08:47 AM

If I had to juggle with that budget, I would consider starting with a good ED doublet refractor so that I can start with a good quality (and probably more expensive) mount. If you outgrow the refractor, you can easily upgrade. If you start with an inadequate mount, you may be frustrated from the start.

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#5 pptw



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Posted 25 November 2020 - 02:38 PM

I have been in the same situation (also from NL eheh) and I made a choice which is often not supported; I bought an undermounted telescope; skywatcher esprit 80 app triplet with Nikon D5300, skywatcher EQ5 with step motor. All combined getting this around 2k should be possible, and under right sky conditions you do have a setup that will get you started with 30s exposures, maybe 1min if you are very lucky. If you want to start, get good results, and don’t spend >>2k it will do the job. Note that I did get the eq5 second hand. Yes, you need a new mount if you want to take bigger telescope or much more gear but it will get you started. Heq5 with affordable doublet is the wisest start with suboptimal image quality but decent mount that you don’t need to upgrade. EQ5 with sweet apo triplet might give you headaches with good alignment and long exposures, but if it works you get fantastic results in short exposure. Bottle scale where you live might determine the best choice? If it’s white zone, you want long exposure. I agree what is said about D5300; it does a very neat job

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