Jeff: Having the reference close to hand is a +. I ended up trying out Skyportal on my CGEM, and while it's neat being able to slew with a phone, I ended up ditching it so I could hard wire the mount and controls indoors. I'm at the next step of pier- mounting my kit, you see. And doing my EAA/AP from indoors(I'm spoiled to go-to after 35 or so years of star hopping!) But the "Plus" is though I don't use Skyportal anymore I still use it's planetarium program to see what's near my night's interest. A degree here or a degree or two over there, and 9 times out of 10 there will be something interesting to see! I found, in an off-hand way, it really has helped with mount longevity too, in that I'm not slewing all over the Lord's Heavens looking for something interesting. I'll pick a sky quadrant to examine, or constellation, and go to it. One other note about star hopping. I found, after many seasons, my knowledge has grown so much about finding targets that I've just about remembered every visible named star in all the constellations available from my home! What great fun!
Don't say you can't teach an old dog new tricks! Woof, woof!😁. Enjoy to the fullest and key up if something occurs you'ld like to share. I'm always glad to help, if I can! And CN has so many members that can help out, too.
Edited by ram812, 10 March 2021 - 06:44 PM.