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Is HyperStar Worth the Money?

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#1 Mr. Pepap

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 05:33 PM

Hello all,

 

I have a C8 that I do astrophotography with. I do just fine with smaller DSOs, but I'd like to capture some larger ones. I've thought about a larger sensor camera and a new focal reducer, but the HyperStar attracts me for a few reasons:

 

        1) A really wide FOV. Will provide plenty of room plus more for imaging the larger objects that I'm aiming for.

 

        2) Fast f/stop. Starizona boasts that HyperStar eliminates the need for an EQ mount and autoguiding. Since I already have both, I will still stick with it because the implication is that in doing so, my images will be better quality.

 

        3) Ease of use. A lot of people on this site recommend refractors for learning AP, but since I've already figured out how to use the C8 I'm sticking with it. The refractors are more than suitable for the larger objects, but are generally not the best for smaller DSOs. With the C8, I can do both by just popping on and off the HyperStar depending on what I'm imaging.

 

------------

 

All this sounds swell, but the price is what prompts me to ask about this on CN. I have 3 big questions that I hope you all will be able to answer for me:

 

        1) Users of HyperStar: how do you like it? Please tell me about your experience with it. 

 

        2) Will using HyperStar affect image quality? I know that the more you reduce the focal length, the more problems with image quality come along with it. Is HyperStar the same way?

 

        3) Can I use my ZWO filter wheel with it? HyperStar has an optional manual filter slider, but I'd like to be able to attach my filter wheel to automate the process.

 

I hope you all will be able to provide some valuable feedback before I blow 1,000 bucks on this. Thanks in advance!


Edited by Mr. Pepap, 20 April 2021 - 05:37 PM.


#2 pyrasanth

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 06:05 PM

Another option is to look at the RASA 8 if the back focus can accomodate your camera and put split rings on your mount for ultra mounting safety and convenience. You can then easily dismount either of the 2 OTA's and be up and running in seconds with either system however if your using rails the OTA's are quite easy to handle- so what ever suits your convenience.

 

The Hyperstar is always going to be a compromise in respect of available field of view and ease of use and whilst the RASA will cost more it is worth waiting for.


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#3 bobzeq25

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 06:19 PM

Another option is to look at the RASA 8 if the back focus can accomodate your camera and put split rings on your mount for ultra mounting safety and convenience. You can then easily dismount either of the 2 OTA's and be up and running in seconds with either system however if your using rails the OTA's are quite easy to handle- so what ever suits your convenience.

 

The Hyperstar is always going to be a compromise in respect of available field of view and ease of use and whilst the RASA will cost more it is worth waiting for.

Do note the RASA (and the Hyperstar) can't use a filter wheel, it's too big, blocks too much light.

 

I like my C8 RASA.  It makes imaging in my light polluted skies (Red Zone, Bortle 7, mag per arc sec squared) significantly better.  It's designed for fast optics, top to bottom, it's not an addon like Hyperstar.

 

But imaging at F2 is not for everyone.  The depth of field is miniscule, the sensitivity to tilt very large.  I gave up on Celestron's camera adapter, I use either a custom one from Precise Parts, or an Artesky.  Neither requires additional spacers, it can be hard to source ones that are adequately parallel.  In light polluted skies like mine, subexposures are very short, one needs hundreds of subs.  I built a fast computer with an AMD Threadripper, for dealing with that issue.

 

"Ease of use" is not a reason for either Hyperstar or RASA.  Tilt, large numbers of subs, etc.  A suitable refractor is _far_ easier to use.  Can use filter wheels, far less sensitivity to tilt, ...

 

The principle reason I see for either is dealing with light polluted skies.


Edited by bobzeq25, 20 April 2021 - 06:25 PM.

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#4 starbuckin

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 06:27 PM

1) Hyperstar is freakin' awesome! You will love it. A RASA is expensive and heavy and will give you similar views. People will argue that the RASA is better, but the 'is it RASA or is it Hyperstar' comparison shots are all over the internet, and well, maybe the most discriminating can tell the difference. Maybe after I've been doing astrophotography a few more years....

 

2) I've never heard this, don't notice any degradation in quality. Hyperstar on the C8 is F1.9. You can gather a ton of data in a short amount of time and get great shots. Just search astrobin....

 

3) Alas, a filter wheel won't work on a C8 or RASA8. An L'enhance filter is great though..


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#5 dswtan

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 06:38 PM

I have 3 big questions that I hope you all will be able to answer for me:

 

        1) Users of HyperStar: how do you like it? Please tell me about your experience with it. 

 

        2) Will using HyperStar affect image quality? I know that the more you reduce the focal length, the more problems with image quality come along with it. Is HyperStar the same way?

 

        3) Can I use my ZWO filter wheel with it? HyperStar has an optional manual filter slider, but I'd like to be able to attach my filter wheel to automate the process.

 

I hope you all will be able to provide some valuable feedback before I blow 1,000 bucks on this. Thanks in advance!

I really enjoyed my used C8 HyperStar to help get me started in DSO astrophotography. Fast was attractive and convenient. OSC was "forced" by its use, and that is the cams I had anyway. But I got better results when I used an 80mm refractor at similar focal length, and then soon got into the whole mono shebang. I later got a used RASA8, but have never got it to work to satisfaction. I am in tilt (or collimation) damnation. I will get around to trying a few more things but meanwhile I take photos with other equipment and have fun elsewhere.

 

To your questions:

 

1. Loved it. To get started. Not for "serious" use in my experience. Good starting point, for me. I wouldn't want to be swapping it in and out, as I'm sure it would mess with collimation too much for my patience. 

 

2. Pretty iffy. Adequate for noobs like I was then. Haven't tried it since I got better equipment, so hard to compare now, but my expectations are modest for it. I view it as a short-cut technology, not as an alternative to a proper solution. Just getting a 60-70-80mm refractor is probably better for multiple reasons IMO -- and cheaper! 

 

3. No filter wheel. No full size DSLR. I only ever used dedicated OSC, both APS-C and 1". Forget trying to automate any filters on it. 

Is it worth it? Pre-RASA, yeah, definitely, if you can afford it. I could at the time and have no regrets. I would not pay full price though. A small refractor is still more sensible and easier to get better quality images. 


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#6 descott12

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 06:39 PM

I think the big discriminating point between a RASA and a Hyperstar is with Hyperstar you can still use your C8 for all sorts of things (from f2 to f20). And you can use it for visual with an eyepiece. Whereas the RASA is a one trick pony.

 

I love my Hyperstar and I really love being able to reconfigure my C8 for all kinds of different uses and targets.


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#7 astrochoker1

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 07:15 PM

Just picked mine up from Starizona this morning for my CPC 11.


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#8 bobzeq25

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 11:31 PM

1) Hyperstar is freakin' awesome! You will love it. A RASA is expensive and heavy and will give you similar views. People will argue that the RASA is better, but the 'is it RASA or is it Hyperstar' comparison shots are all over the internet, and well, maybe the most discriminating can tell the difference. Maybe after I've been doing astrophotography a few more years....

 

2) I've never heard this, don't notice any degradation in quality. Hyperstar on the C8 is F1.9. You can gather a ton of data in a short amount of time and get great shots. Just search astrobin....

 

3) Alas, a filter wheel won't work on a C8 or RASA8. An L'enhance filter is great though..

For emission nebulae only.  On a broadband target like a galaxy it's worse than useless, you lose both signal to noise ratio and color fidelity.


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#9 bobzeq25

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Posted 20 April 2021 - 11:34 PM

I think the big discriminating point between a RASA and a Hyperstar is with Hyperstar you can still use your C8 for all sorts of things (from f2 to f20). And you can use it for visual with an eyepiece. Whereas the RASA is a one trick pony.

 

I love my Hyperstar and I really love being able to reconfigure my C8 for all kinds of different uses and targets.

Agree it's a one trick pony.  But I think it does the one trick better than Hyperstar.  <smile>  Since I fixed the tilt problem it has the flattest field I've ever seen, the best stars at the edges.


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#10 starbuckin

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Posted 21 April 2021 - 06:12 AM

For emission nebulae only.  On a broadband target like a galaxy it's worse than useless, you lose both signal to noise ratio and color fidelity.

Well yes, but you wouldn't use narrowband on a galaxy with a mono camera anyway..

 

The point was people are getting amazing pictures with an OSC camera and the new multiband filters.


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#11 alphatripleplus

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Posted 21 April 2021 - 08:37 AM

I've often thought about trying a hyperstar with my C6, as my C8 is not hyperstar compatible. However, I will probably go the route of a larger APO refractor, even if it is slower, for some of the reasons mentioned in the above posts.


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#12 RRod

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Posted 22 April 2021 - 01:09 PM

Another option is to look at the RASA 8 if the back focus can accomodate your camera and put split rings on your mount for ultra mounting safety and convenience. You can then easily dismount either of the 2 OTA's and be up and running in seconds with either system however if your using rails the OTA's are quite easy to handle- so what ever suits your convenience.

 

The Hyperstar is always going to be a compromise in respect of available field of view and ease of use and whilst the RASA will cost more it is worth waiting for.

If you have the telescope already and just buying the Hyperestar which is 1,000, sure yes, otherwise, hyperstar+telescope is not cheaper than RASA 8"



#13 RRod

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Posted 22 April 2021 - 01:12 PM

Well yes, but you wouldn't use narrowband on a galaxy with a mono camera anyway..

 

The point was people are getting amazing pictures with an OSC camera and the new multiband filters.

Well, I do a lot of Narrow band image with the RASA. I also do that for galaxies, so I can add Ha to them although is limited, FL of the scope is too short for most galaxies



#14 starbuckin

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Posted 22 April 2021 - 04:53 PM

C8 can work at F10 (and higher), F7, (F4 with Starizona’s long promised adapter) and F1.9. It can also be used for visual.

RASA is F2 AP.

If you never want to do anything but widefield and don’t care for visual, get a RASA. If you like to collect telescopes, add a RaSA.

If you want one scope and one set of accessories, consider a nice Edge.

#15 descott12

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Posted 22 April 2021 - 05:02 PM


If you want one scope and one set of accessories, consider a nice Edge.

If I had a chance to do it all again, I would get an Edge over a regular C8 but realize that accessories like reducers are WAY more expensive for an Edge and you have far few options.



#16 JMW

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Posted 23 April 2021 - 12:59 PM

I find it useful under dark skies. At my house the urban light pollution makes the wide field of view very low contrast. I find I need longer focal lengths when imaging under urban skies. It would probably work ok doing narrow band under light polluted skies. I don't have a mono camera that is suitable for Hyperstar.

 

I have a C11 Edge HD with the 0.7 focal reducer and Hyperstar. I would use a guide scope because off axis guiding would block too much in Hyperstar mode.

 

It's been several years since I have used it in Hyperstar mode. I haven't tried my newer ASI2600MC-Pro with it. 

 

I have been using my refractors or f/4 10 inch newtonian for imaging and EAA recently. It is easier to create good mount models when the mirror doesn't move.


Edited by JMW, 23 April 2021 - 01:02 PM.



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