Thinking about venturing into some casual imaging with my telescope, a Celestron Evolution 8 SCT. I've been doing research here and other sites online, but a bit overwhelmed, and thought I'd turn to folks with actual experience. I wanted to keep it as simple as possible, and prefer to keep it on the entry-level side (realizing you do get what you pay for). This would more be from a hobbiest / occaisional imaging perspective. Not a full-on dive into imaging.
This is what I think I understand:
- I know my scope is best for visual, and not ideal as an imaging scope
- The mount is nice and solid, and while it has goto/tracking, there will still be some drift vs an equatorial mount.
- One of the main issues is a narrow FOV given its 2032 focal length
- Narrow FOV doesn't sound like it's an issue for planetary imaging, but would be (as would the setup) if I wanted to do any DSO?
Cameras: I've been looking at the ZWO cameras, and using astronomy tools, calculated the FOV (table and FOV shot attached). I'd prefer to stick to the entry level side, and upgrade later if I end up imaging more frequently.
- Looking at the entry level options: 120MC-S ($150) vs. 224MC ($250) it looks like all the specs are similar except for the sensor used (ONS vs Sony), which gets you more resolution.
- As you move up to the next level of options, looks like you're getting a bigger field of view : ASI462MC ($300), ASI178MC ($350), ASI385MC ($350)
- Focul Reducer: It looks like a focul reducer would helpful? Is there an advantage to something like the Celestron reducer made for SCTs vs a much cheaper GSO reducer?
- Software: (on a macbook). Is the stock ZWO software easiest or would something like firecapture be the way to go?
- Filters: I live in a city. If I want to try to take images in my neighborhood, should I be looking for a light polution filter?
Thanks again for all the help in advance.