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Celestron starsense app

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#1 Tralfamadorian

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Posted 04 December 2020 - 05:16 PM

I’m looking at a beginner telescope purchase and have an interest in the celestron starsense app that is included with some of their telescopes. I wonder if anyone has experience with the app? Is it worth changing brands just to get the app with a telescope with comparable features?



#2 junomike

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Posted 04 December 2020 - 05:56 PM

Overall I find the App a little more involved (set up) over the Hand controller but the ease of use along with the added features (GPS, Location, Etc) more than make up for it IMO.


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#3 drd715

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Posted 04 December 2020 - 06:29 PM

It works, but it does not have a gps so you still have to put in lat/long , date and time manually.   Similar to "plate solving " in several computer apps such as "Sharp Cap".  I tried one for a few nights, but found the hand controller a bit dimmer or less contrasty than the standard hand controller.  It could have been my eyes (pre cataract replacement) or a setting in the hand controller  - and it was just out on the market so newer versions may be better. 



#4 YoungStargazer

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Posted 04 December 2020 - 10:47 PM

It works, but it does not have a gps so you still have to put in lat/long , date and time manually.   Similar to "plate solving " in several computer apps such as "Sharp Cap".  I tried one for a few nights, but found the hand controller a bit dimmer or less contrasty than the standard hand controller.  It could have been my eyes (pre cataract replacement) or a setting in the hand controller  - and it was just out on the market so newer versions may be better. 

For the Longitude and Latitude ... does it need to be very specific to the spot I'm standing, or a vaguely close enough Longitude & Latitude is enough?

 

For example if I live some where in Toronto, ON. entering the rough area (43.6532° N, 79.3832° W)  Longitude & Latitude, will that suffice ?



#5 hcf

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Posted 05 December 2020 - 12:44 AM

I’m looking at a beginner telescope purchase and have an interest in the celestron starsense app that is included with some of their telescopes. I wonder if anyone has experience with the app? Is it worth changing brands just to get the app with a telescope with comparable features?

Do you mean the Starsense Autoalign,   or the Starsense Explorer ? 



#6 spirit1flyer

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Posted 05 December 2020 - 03:10 AM

I'm assuming you are referencing the app and the mount that attaches to the telescope. 

The app was amazing, it was so easy to find things and just wonderful for a novice to use. 

Now that I have my Z10 I'm wishing for a convenient way to attach it... I managed to jury rig something that works but I'd like to remake it with a lot less weight. With that in mind... 

 

You will end up loving the app and the telescope will be subpar. 

 

This is what I have https://www.celestro...plorer-dx-130az

 

This is what I would recommend you get https://www.celestro...plorer-lt-114az

 

The reason I recommend that most people have two basic routes.

Learn the hard way to star hop and all that which is rewarding I'm sure (I still am very much a rookie) (cheap)

or go computerized. (expensive) 

The route you could have is to modify your mount like these people for a dob of a larger size aka aperture fever 

 

https://www.all-star...roducts_id=2075

 

My mount looks a little strange but I mounted it on a piece of wood and attached it to the gimpy red dot finder and it works out pretty good. I'd say I get pretty close to finding what I'm looking for, its not perfect because the weight makes the mount a little unstable but I was able to quickly find a few blobs even with a really bright moon the other day with my Z10. 

 

So advantages of the scope, I don't really think the views are that subpar out of the 114 compared to mine and you get the mounting stuff that would be easier to work with then the side mounted one for when you upgrade. 

 

I picked up a moon filter when I bought it and later a 6.4mm lens. The 130 is decent but past planet viewing, I wanted something bigger. 

 

The mounting attachment on the 130 broke partially for me but I can't get a replacement part, I'd have to send the whole thing back which just sounds like a pain. I'd consider it now that I've got a bigger scope. 

The other advantage of the 114 is the price tag. I'm not sure that the 130 should really be that much more expensive but maybe I'm missing some difference between the two that a more experienced person would know. as I said, I'm very much a rookie at all this. 



#7 Anony

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Posted 05 December 2020 - 03:04 PM

I picked up a moon filter when I bought it and later a 6.4mm lens. The 130 is decent but past planet viewing, I wanted something bigger. 

 

The mounting attachment on the 130 broke partially for me but I can't get a replacement part, I'd have to send the whole thing back which just sounds like a pain. I'd consider it now that I've got a bigger scope. 

The other advantage of the 114 is the price tag. I'm not sure that the 130 should really be that much more expensive but maybe I'm missing some difference between the two that a more experienced person would know. as I said, I'm very much a rookie at all this. 

 

I think the 114 is a bird-jones, isn't it? Which means it'd be a nightmare to collimate. If the phone holders are the same, I'd expect the 80mm refractor to be the better option, as the refractor could serve as a grab and go scope with no downtime... I expect the mount stinks, but scope should be okay.

 

However I don't know if the phone holders are the same between the scopes or not. I'm hoping they eventually sell the codes separately ... like everyone else, I don't want the scope bits, I just want the phone app + holder.



#8 spirit1flyer

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Posted 05 December 2020 - 10:53 PM

I think the 114 is a bird-jones, isn't it? Which means it'd be a nightmare to collimate. If the phone holders are the same, I'd expect the 80mm refractor to be the better option, as the refractor could serve as a grab and go scope with no downtime... I expect the mount stinks, but scope should be okay.

 

However I don't know if the phone holders are the same between the scopes or not. I'm hoping they eventually sell the codes separately ... like everyone else, I don't want the scope bits, I just want the phone app + holder.

 

This is why more experienced people are helpful :p  The mount is the ideal one on the 80 and the 114. The 130 and 102 mount on the side making it harder to work with to adapt for other scopes.

 

Is the 130 a bird-jones?  



#9 Anony

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Posted 06 December 2020 - 12:42 AM

This is why more experienced people are helpful tongue2.gif  The mount is the ideal one on the 80 and the 114. The 130 and 102 mount on the side making it harder to work with to adapt for other scopes.

 

Is the 130 a bird-jones?  

 

Don't think the 130 is bird jones, just the 114mm.

 

Since the phone mount I assume can be removed regardless of if to the side or mounted onto the scope, why would the 102/130 mount be more difficult to remove and use on another scope?

 

I haven't owned any of them, so am kind of curious. I assumed the phone holder thingy was the same for all models, just that the 102/130 has a somewhat better (relatively speaking) mount with phone holder to the side.

 

The argument against the 102/130 is the cost... $400 is a bit pricey, basically paying $200 just for the app and phone holder.



#10 Ulmer Spatz

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Posted 06 December 2020 - 06:39 AM

 $400 is a bit pricey, basically paying $200 just for the app and phone holder.

You also get the code needed to activate the app. 



#11 spirit1flyer

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Posted 06 December 2020 - 06:52 AM

The side mounted ones are actually attached with a special piece integrated into the tripod itself rather then on the telescope.

 

Its attachment is a circular connection that hooks directly into the mount area of the telescope. https://www.celestro...plorer-dx-130az

 

Hover over the picture to zoom in a bit on the attachment and compare to this one 

https://www.celestro...xplorer-lt-80az

 

So far people have had more success with working with the ones mounted on the telescope rather then the side. 

 

I've managed to do it but it works because I took the mirror off and solidly positioned my phone. Its not very user friendly but it works. 


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#12 Tony Flanders

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Posted 06 December 2020 - 07:47 AM

For the Longitude and Latitude ... does it need to be very specific to the spot I'm standing, or a vaguely close enough Longitude & Latitude is enough?

 

For example if I live some where in Toronto, ON. entering the rough area (43.6532° N, 79.3832° W)  Longitude & Latitude, will that suffice ?

It would be more accurate -- and easier -- to enter 43.65 and 79.38. Or even 43.7 and 79.4. One hundredth of a degree is a bit less than a mile, and distances of a few miles are irrelevant to amateur astronomy unless you're doing some kind of precision work like timing asteroid occultations.

 

On the other hand, there are tons of free apps that will tell you your precise location accurate better than 10 yards if you have a smart phone with GPS capability.


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#13 YoungStargazer

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Posted 06 December 2020 - 02:45 PM

It would be more accurate -- and easier -- to enter 43.65 and 79.38. Or even 43.7 and 79.4. One hundredth of a degree is a bit less than a mile, and distances of a few miles are irrelevant to amateur astronomy unless you're doing some kind of precision work like timing asteroid occultations.

 

On the other hand, there are tons of free apps that will tell you your precise location accurate better than 10 yards if you have a smart phone with GPS capability.

Thanks! that answer a lot of questions.

 

Basically I was pondering if Geo-location was really important, then I might invest in a SkySync GPS Accessory, but as I'm still an amateur hobby stargazer... It seems like that's not necessary.

 

Yes, I can just enter it manually using a GPS app from the phone.




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