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What's a good starting scope to observe DSO's?

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#1 AstroSSM

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 10:30 AM

I think I might have astronomy fever... I've been planning an astrophotography rig for quite some time now, but I like the idea of being able to observe as well while my rig is doing its thing. I have a 5in reflector I purchased about a decade ago and it's nice and all, but it has its limitations where I live. I've had great views of the moon, Jupiter, Saturn, and a fuzzy patches for the Orion nebula and Andromeda. I'd like to get something that could show me much more but is still semi-portable.

 

I don't know much about reflectors/dobs and how much better a 12in is over a 10in, per se. I definitely want to go big off the bat with at least a 10in minimum, but how much more could I see with a 12in/14in? I don't plan to observe too often so the quality doesn't have to be amazing, but still good enough to get some "Wow, that is so cool!" thoughts when observing.

 

I'm young, so the weight of a larger dob isn't much of a problem for me. What is a good recommendation of size or specific scope? What are some tips and tricks to observing? (Sorry if this belongs in the reflector forum!)

 

Thanks!


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#2 Mike W

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 10:38 AM

10" Apertura dob. Anything bigger you really should get a truss tube.
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#3 JohnBear

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 10:57 AM

Do you belong to an astronomy club, and have you discussed this with members that have the kinds of scope you are interested in? Arriving early for few star parties will likely provide a lot of real world "eyeball experience" insight on what you really need. 

 

I tend to agree with Mike (above) that a good Dob has a lot to offer for visual astronomy - especially if you like to hop around the sky.  My big yard cannon is 12" SW Flextube on a scope buggy with a collapsible folding rocker box (with setting circle) for beyond-driveway transport.  It just hits the pot when I want the really good views. It also holds collimation remarkably well and is quite easy to tweak when needed. Otherwise, I have my amazing 5" AWB OneSky for true grab and go astronomy.  These are the scopes I "use the most", and  that I Really Enjoy using.   


Edited by JohnBear, 05 October 2022 - 11:00 AM.


#4 MrRoberts

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 11:01 AM

Maybe about 15 years ago I bought my first real ota, an Orion 8" dob. Made friends with someone the next town over who had a 12".

After a couple of years, we went to a club 3-night outing. One of the folks there had a 10"

I liked it for the brighter views, my friend liked it for the ease of using (size/weight) without giving much up in the way of views.

 

If size, weight, bulk, storage etc is concerned here I would say even the 8" dob would be a big step up.



#5 Taosmath

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 11:26 AM

I've been very happy with my 12"Meade  Lightbridge truss tube dob.  It shows a lot more detail than my 8"Dob and side by side you can tell it gives a bit more detail than a 10". Its light grasp is enough to let me work on the Herschel 400 list even in the Bortle 4 skies I get from my yard.

 

However I'd look for a good used 10" or 12" dob and I'd be more concerned about the quality of the scope (optically and mechanically) than whether it was a 10" or 12".

 

As for observing tips:

  1. Join a club if you can find one near you.
  2. Get an observing chair  makes a huge difference if you observe e when sitting comfortably
  3. Work on a project - Astronomical league has LOTS - but Messier list or Double star list would be a good place to start
  4. You can start with a. couple of eyepieces - a widefield sweeper of focal length 30-35mm, eg. Agena 32 mm 70 degree SWA and a Zoom lens - Celestron 24mm -8mm is good for the money, but Baader and Pentax are a bit better for 3x the price.  After those two you can get better fixed focal length lenses if you decide if you want to concentrate on wider field views or high power.
  5. Get a good star chart - I like Pocket sky atlas, either original or jumbo edition.
  6. Did I mention join a club ?wink.gif

Edited by Taosmath, 05 October 2022 - 11:35 AM.

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#6 Ihtegla Sar

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 11:41 AM

I think I might have astronomy fever... I've been planning an astrophotography rig for quite some time now, but I like the idea of being able to observe as well while my rig is doing its thing. I have a 5in reflector I purchased about a decade ago and it's nice and all, but it has its limitations where I live. I've had great views of the moon, Jupiter, Saturn, and a fuzzy patches for the Orion nebula and Andromeda. I'd like to get something that could show me much more but is still semi-portable.

 

I don't know much about reflectors/dobs and how much better a 12in is over a 10in, per se. I definitely want to go big off the bat with at least a 10in minimum, but how much more could I see with a 12in/14in? I don't plan to observe too often so the quality doesn't have to be amazing, but still good enough to get some "Wow, that is so cool!" thoughts when observing.

 

I'm young, so the weight of a larger dob isn't much of a problem for me. What is a good recommendation of size or specific scope? What are some tips and tricks to observing? (Sorry if this belongs in the reflector forum!)

 

Thanks!

A 12" gathers 44% more light than a 10", which is significant but not a huge amazing difference.  How dark are your skies?  Your 5" will provide better views of DSOs under dark skies than either a 10" or 12" will under light polluted skies.  So if you really want to see DSOs you need to get out under dark skies.

 

Unless you live under dark skies, you will need to travel.  When looking for a scope be sure to consider not just the weight of the scope, but how well it will fit in your vehicle, along with all the other gear you will need for the trip.  A 12" solid tube requires a fairly good sized vehicle, but a truss or collapsible design will fit in just about any car, except maybe a small sports car.

 

If I were young and wanted to get the best views of DSOs, I would look for at getting the biggest aperture I could reasonably afford that would reasonably fit in my vehicle for trips to dark skies.  But I would also look at the mechanics of the scope and might see if I could get a good deal on a used premium scope.  The mass market dobs tend to have pretty good optics these days, but the mechanical aspects are not nearly as good as a premium scope. 

 

So things like how easy the scope is to collimate and balance will be much better with a premium than a mass market dob. If you have a scope that is easy to collimate because  it has a good secondary holder and that doesn't move when changing heavy eyepieces, it will make life more enjoyable on those trips to a dark site.  When I switched from a Skywatcher collapsible to an Obsession those were the things that made the biggest difference in enjoyment.


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#7 AstroSSM

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 11:51 AM

A 12" gathers 44% more light than a 10", which is significant but not a huge amazing difference.  How dark are your skies?  Your 5" will provide better views of DSOs under dark skies than either a 10" or 12" will under light polluted skies.  So if you really want to see DSOs you need to get out under dark skies.

 

Unless you live under dark skies, you will need to travel.  When looking for a scope be sure to consider not just the weight of the scope, but how well it will fit in your vehicle, along with all the other gear you will need for the trip.  A 12" solid tube requires a fairly good sized vehicle, but a truss or collapsible design will fit in just about any car, except maybe a small sports car.

 

If I were young and wanted to get the best views of DSOs, I would look for at getting the biggest aperture I could reasonably afford that would reasonably fit in my vehicle for trips to dark skies.  But I would also look at the mechanics of the scope and might see if I could get a good deal on a used premium scope.  The mass market dobs tend to have pretty good optics these days, but the mechanical aspects are not nearly as good as a premium scope. 

 

So things like how easy the scope is to collimate and balance will be much better with a premium than a mass market dob. If you have a scope that is easy to collimate because  it has a good secondary holder and that doesn't move when changing heavy eyepieces, it will make life more enjoyable on those trips to a dark site.  When I switched from a Skywatcher collapsible to an Obsession those were the things that made the biggest difference in enjoyment.

I'm currently in a Bortle 5 but can very easily travel to Bortle 4 within about 15 minutes and Bortle 3 within 45 minutes, all distances I am comfortable driving for a good night out. In that sense, getting a larger aperture would not be such a problem since I could utilize it well. I also camp quite often and get to Bortle 2 skies and I'm sure I could make room in my car for the scope, or whatever vehicle we take. Again, weight isn't much of a problem for me, but I'd prefer not to have something that requires wheels to move around. I'd like to be able to pick it up or disassemble it when moving locations. 

 

My car is a bit smaller in size so I'm not sure what the limiting collapsible design would be if that would be the road I'd go down, I'll have to take some measurements to figure that out exactly (though the trunk is pretty large).

 

I know nothing of the price for dobs/truss tube designs, but I'd say my budget would be ~$2,500 give or take a few. I'd be willing to go a little higher if the difference in performance or ease of transport was worth the extra cost. 



#8 Ihtegla Sar

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:03 PM

I'm currently in a Bortle 5 but can very easily travel to Bortle 4 within about 15 minutes and Bortle 3 within 45 minutes, all distances I am comfortable driving for a good night out. In that sense, getting a larger aperture would not be such a problem since I could utilize it well. I also camp quite often and get to Bortle 2 skies and I'm sure I could make room in my car for the scope, or whatever vehicle we take. Again, weight isn't much of a problem for me, but I'd prefer not to have something that requires wheels to move around. I'd like to be able to pick it up or disassemble it when moving locations. 

 

My car is a bit smaller in size so I'm not sure what the limiting collapsible design would be if that would be the road I'd go down, I'll have to take some measurements to figure that out exactly (though the trunk is pretty large).

 

I know nothing of the price for dobs/truss tube designs, but I'd say my budget would be ~$2,500 give or take a few. I'd be willing to go a little higher if the difference in performance or ease of transport was worth the extra cost. 

$2,500 will get you a pretty nice used 12" truss scope if you can find one in your area that is priced well.  If it were me, I would look for a 12" Classic Obsession or something similar (Star Master, New Moon, Teeter, etc.) in that price range on the used market. 

 

The motions on an Obsession are so much smoother than a Skywatcher, balance is better and adjusting the secondary is much easier.  So for me the cost of a premium scope was well worth it.  Plus a truss scope will be easier to load, doesn't take all that long to set up and you would have no problem lifting a 12" mirror/rocker box into the car.  So you would not need wheel barrow handles (unless you wanted to move the scope around fully assembled).



#9 vtornado

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:13 PM

A 12 inch dob is the biggest "small" scope.  I have the skywatcher 300p flex tube.

It collapses down so it fits height wise into the front passenger section.

I like it because assembly and disassembly is quick.  However it takes up

much more room than a true truss.

 

Given your "small" car, I think I would go with a true truss.  Even though the flex tube

may fit, sometime in your future you may have more stuff in the car than you do now.

 

weight isn't much of a problem for me, but I'd prefer not to have something that requires wheels  -- that could be a problem. The collapsible is girthy and weighs around 50 lbs.

I can carry it for a couple of hundred feet, but I would not go any farther than that.

A true true truss has smaller pieces, but that will mean more trips.  If you have to

traverse rugged ground in the dark carrying that weight could be a disaster on 

slippery grass, with roots and rabbit holes.

 

If you could find a used 8 inch dob used near you, you could try a bigger scope,

and if you want to go bigger, you could pass the 8 onto someone else for  no loss.

 

You could go for a used 10 or 12 too but the frequency of sales near to you may be very sparse, and you may have to wait forever.  Better to observe with an

8 than to observe with nothing.


Edited by vtornado, 05 October 2022 - 12:16 PM.


#10 Neanderthal

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:43 PM

If I recall, the OD of the 8" AD8 is about 19", whereas the AD10 is around 22". The tube dimensions are not that big a deal and can easily be moved around with lifting straps, like the FarPoint straps. It's moving the base around that can become a pain, clearing door jambs, weight, ect. Careful as I try to be, bumping the OTA or base into things will happen. Either the 8" or 10" are both winners and will expose you to many wonders. You might also run into coma with a 10", so don't be surprised if that bothers you and you end up needing to purchase a corrector ($) for that. When I was looking, it was the height of the supply chain boggle and I had to resort to a used Dob. I found a like-new AD8 and made a run for it and don't regret it for a second.



#11 AstroSSM

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:58 PM

$2,500 will get you a pretty nice used 12" truss scope if you can find one in your area that is priced well.  If it were me, I would look for a 12" Classic Obsession or something similar (Star Master, New Moon, Teeter, etc.) in that price range on the used market. 

 

The motions on an Obsession are so much smoother than a Skywatcher, balance is better and adjusting the secondary is much easier.  So for me the cost of a premium scope was well worth it.  Plus a truss scope will be easier to load, doesn't take all that long to set up and you would have no problem lifting a 12" mirror/rocker box into the car.  So you would not need wheel barrow handles (unless you wanted to move the scope around fully assembled).

That's good to know, thanks! A 12" sounds like it would be an ideal place to start in terms of size for transport purposes.

 

A 12 inch dob is the biggest "small" scope.  I have the skywatcher 300p flex tube.

It collapses down so it fits height wise into the front passenger section.

I like it because assembly and disassembly is quick.  However it takes up

much more room than a true truss.

 

Given your "small" car, I think I would go with a true truss.  Even though the flex tube

may fit, sometime in your future you may have more stuff in the car than you do now.

 

weight isn't much of a problem for me, but I'd prefer not to have something that requires wheels  -- that could be a problem. The collapsible is girthy and weighs around 50 lbs.

I can carry it for a couple of hundred feet, but I would not go any farther than that.

A true true truss has smaller pieces, but that will mean more trips.  If you have to

traverse rugged ground in the dark carrying that weight could be a disaster on 

slippery grass, with roots and rabbit holes.

 

If you could find a used 8 inch dob used near you, you could try a bigger scope,

and if you want to go bigger, you could pass the 8 onto someone else for  no loss.

 

You could go for a used 10 or 12 too but the frequency of sales near to you may be very sparse, and you may have to wait forever.  Better to observe with an

8 than to observe with nothing.

Yeah I think 50lbs would be the higher end of what I'd be willing to lug around per piece. Most often I wouldn't walk more than 50ft to my setup spot at home, but when camping I'm not sure (maybe 100 - 200ft at most), so I could deal with that weight for the few times it would occur. If a lighter design requires more trips then that is also fine, I'm not in any rush to get these things set up.



#12 Ihtegla Sar

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:59 PM

This is an example of the type of premium dob you might look for on the used market. It was listed at $3,500 but was a 14.5" with a Zambuto mirror. So, you should be able to find something smaller in the 12" range with a good mirror even if not made by Zambuto for closer to $2,500.

https://www.cloudyni...starmaster-145/

Edited by Ihtegla Sar, 05 October 2022 - 01:00 PM.


#13 AstroSSM

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 04:03 PM

This is an example of the type of premium dob you might look for on the used market. It was listed at $3,500 but was a 14.5" with a Zambuto mirror. So, you should be able to find something smaller in the 12" range with a good mirror even if not made by Zambuto for closer to $2,500.

https://www.cloudyni...starmaster-145/

I presume that Zambuto is a good type of mirror? What should I look for in regards to the mirrors?



#14 Ihtegla Sar

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 04:27 PM

I presume that Zambuto is a good type of mirror? What should I look for in regards to the mirrors?

Carl Zambuto mirrors are legendary for their contrast. https://zambutomirrors.com/

But there are many other excellent mirror makers including but not necessarily limited to Mike Lockwood, Gordon Waite, Terry Ostahowski, and Optiques Fullum. In the used market there are a number of other fine mirror makers that are no longer in business.

If buying used, ideally you would want to look through a scope before purchase to get an idea of how well it performs.

Edited by Ihtegla Sar, 05 October 2022 - 04:30 PM.


#15 Roman M

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Posted 06 October 2022 - 09:39 AM

12" will make you say "wow" to almost everything.

#16 Bearcub

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Posted 06 October 2022 - 03:10 PM

Im new.. got my dob quite recently. If I had a proper place and better skies I would go for 14" if I could refund. But there are only 16" or 12" so I would still go for 16" if i had the moneys..

But to be honest even 10" is quite impressive. Definately a proper scope, and I almost bought 8" but last minute I decided to check the prices on 10" and found a big discount. 8" would had been a letdown not in terms of visuals but in terms of not going bigger from the start.

 

Most likely 12" is the top because everything else matters more - dark sky, where to put it.. and so on..



#17 Alex Swartzinski

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Posted 13 October 2022 - 08:44 PM

I think I might have astronomy fever... I've been planning an astrophotography rig for quite some time now, but I like the idea of being able to observe as well while my rig is doing its thing.

 

I don't know much about reflectors/dobs and how much better a 12in is over a 10in, per se. I definitely want to go big off the bat with at least a 10in minimum, but how much more could I see with a 12in/14in? I don't plan to observe too often so the quality doesn't have to be amazing, but still good enough to get some "Wow, that is so cool!" thoughts when observing.

 

I'm young, so the weight of a larger dob isn't much of a problem for me. What is a good recommendation of size or specific scope? What are some tips and tricks to observing? (Sorry if this belongs in the reflector forum!)

 

Thanks!

I would get the astrophotography rig up and running before adding the dob since it seems like imaging involves lots of baby sitting the equipment, especially when getting started with it! I'll let actual astrophotographers comment on this since I don't do AP, but I've seen enough to know that it's not just plug and play.

 

Once you are ready for the dob, I would probably limit myself to a 10" solid tube. 12" is better, but I wouldn't want to transport that giant water heater tube which is wider than many car backseats. A truss 12" is much more manageable, but it increases setup time and you might not want that if you are already building an AP rig every night.

 

10" is also plenty to enjoy yourself. Many visual only users have less aperture and still have fun. AP and visual are different sports with different types of thrills.

 

I would personally stick with a purely manual setup to change it up from all the computerized AP stuff too. You might even find that a simple pair of binoculars is plenty to enjoy the night if imaging is your main priority. 


Edited by Alex Swartzinski, 13 October 2022 - 08:45 PM.

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#18 Keith Rivich

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Posted 14 October 2022 - 07:57 PM

I think I might have astronomy fever... I've been planning an astrophotography rig for quite some time now, but I like the idea of being able to observe as well while my rig is doing its thing. I have a 5in reflector I purchased about a decade ago and it's nice and all, but it has its limitations where I live. I've had great views of the moon, Jupiter, Saturn, and a fuzzy patches for the Orion nebula and Andromeda. I'd like to get something that could show me much more but is still semi-portable.

 

I don't know much about reflectors/dobs and how much better a 12in is over a 10in, per se. I definitely want to go big off the bat with at least a 10in minimum, but how much more could I see with a 12in/14in? I don't plan to observe too often so the quality doesn't have to be amazing, but still good enough to get some "Wow, that is so cool!" thoughts when observing.

 

I'm young, so the weight of a larger dob isn't much of a problem for me. What is a good recommendation of size or specific scope? What are some tips and tricks to observing? (Sorry if this belongs in the reflector forum!)

 

Thanks!

All things being equal 2" jumps in scopes pays off well up to a certain point. For me that point is around 18". Not a huge difference between a 18" scope and a 20" scope. Less so for a 20" to a 22" and so forth. 

 

Dark skies are more important then aperture. Again, up to a certain point. I would rather observe with my 25" in Bortle 3 skies then a 6" in Bortle 1. It would take a 14" or so scope to pull me away from the 25". 

 

Not saying it can't be done but I have seen folks do visual observing alongside their imaging. But it is casual observing. You are going to compromise your night vision every time you work the computer for your imaging. 

 

So size of a scope? Big enough to fit in with all your imaging rig with enough room leftover for a bottle of water and a sandwich. Maybe some Oreo's. 

 

I agree with some early comments: anything over 10" needs to be a truss tube. Perhaps an ultra-light. I am not a fan of these scopes but it may suit your purposes well. 

 

Observing techniques?  Work the Messiers if you haven't done so just yet. Once you get proficient with these add in some more difficult objects. Perhaps dip your toes into the Herschel 400. Lots of good DSO's on this list. 

 

Last bit of wisdom...don't over do it. I've seen folks burn out trying to do everything at once. Maybe alternate imaging and visual each dark cycle. Your energy will quickly dissipate if you are fighting problems all night long....


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#19 Sketcher

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Posted 16 October 2022 - 05:21 PM

A good starting scope for observing DSOs is whatever telescope one has to work with.

 

If one doesn't have a telescope yet, then I would suggest something along the lines of a 4-inch f/6 (or thereabouts) refractor -- plenty of aperture, capable of rounding up many, many DSOs; and providing some amazingly nice views of many of them.  Note that two Messier books (The Messier Album by Mallas and Kreimer, and The Messier Objects by Stephen James O'Meara) have been written based largely upon visual observations made with 4-inch refractors.

 

In the old days, (field guide) books were written that assumed the reader had access to little more than a 3-inch refractor.  Remember, Jay Reynolds Freeman observed all the Messiers along with the Herschel 400 with a 55mm (2.2-inch) telescope.  All the Messiers can be seen with a 1-inch telescope, some of which will be shown quite beautifully:

 

M45 1 inch aperture 07 Dec 2018 20x Sketcher   text 1
 
M31 32 110  1 inch aperture 5 Dec 2018 20x Sketcher   text 1
 
OK, so both, a dark sky and aperture are beneficial for deep-sky purposes; but while aperture is almost always emphasized, a dark sky just doesn't tend to receive its fair share of emphasis.  Yet, if one has a dark enough sky, much can be accomplished with really small (by today's standards) apertures -- with any telescope really.
 
In my opinion, deep-sky observing is mostly about observing beneath an essentially pristine (zero light pollution, zero light trespass) sky.  Given that sky, a 4-inch f/6 refractor is going to be capable of showing views of DSOs that put to shame most of the views that many "enjoy" while using four times the aperture beneath skies that aren't really all that suitable for deep-sky observing.
 
Bottom Line:  It's not just about a "good telescope".  It's also about a "good sky".

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#20 JohnBear

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Posted 16 October 2022 - 05:50 PM

+1 (many times over) for Dark & Clear Skies! 

 

A decent small telescope on calm and clear night will outperform a big aperture beast with $550 eyepieces on an overcast  cloudy and  windy night.


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#21 Tony Flanders

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Posted 18 October 2022 - 04:36 AM

In my opinion, deep-sky observing is mostly about observing beneath an essentially pristine (zero light pollution, zero light trespass) sky.


Unfortunately, that's not an option for 90% of the world's population. So the rest of us make do with skies that range from mediocre to abysmal.

 

Having said that, there's no question that for the average U.S. resident, a one-hour drive to a somewhat darker site yields greater benefits than doubling the aperture of your telescope.


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#22 tommm

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Posted 22 October 2022 - 12:24 PM

Hmmm, 1 hr, say 50 miles, 100 round trip, if you drive a gas vehicle at say 25 mpg that's 4 gallons or about $22.00/trip at $5.50/gal. Say 40 times/yr gives $880.00/yr. It adds up after a while.



#23 Starman1

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Posted 22 October 2022 - 01:47 PM

I think I might have astronomy fever... I've been planning an astrophotography rig for quite some time now, but I like the idea of being able to observe as well while my rig is doing its thing. I have a 5in reflector I purchased about a decade ago and it's nice and all, but it has its limitations where I live. I've had great views of the moon, Jupiter, Saturn, and a fuzzy patches for the Orion nebula and Andromeda. I'd like to get something that could show me much more but is still semi-portable.

 

I don't know much about reflectors/dobs and how much better a 12in is over a 10in, per se. I definitely want to go big off the bat with at least a 10in minimum, but how much more could I see with a 12in/14in? I don't plan to observe too often so the quality doesn't have to be amazing, but still good enough to get some "Wow, that is so cool!" thoughts when observing.

 

I'm young, so the weight of a larger dob isn't much of a problem for me. What is a good recommendation of size or specific scope? What are some tips and tricks to observing? (Sorry if this belongs in the reflector forum!)

 

Thanks!

I would have said 4" (I started there and saw hundreds of objects by the time I got to 5").

But since you're talking dobs, I have to say it depends on your sky darkness.

0.5 magnitude changes are 8">>10">>12.5">>16">>20">>25"

So, if you can pick up a full magnitude by simply moving the scope to a darker sky......

 

I estimate that in very dark skies, an 8" can see about 15,000 DSOs, and a 12.5" might get 32,000 or more, and a 20" might exceed 100,000

But those are thousands of objects that are very very small and very very faint.

 

Of course, a larger aperture in the same dark sky will see more.  But if your budget says that the scope + accessories (usually more than the scope price) dictates a smaller scope,

an 8" would be a great portable scope.  8" SCTs are easier to use than 8" dobs--dobs are so short they really need a pedestal of some sort to bring the eyepiece up to a comfortable height.

(there are lots of ideas here on CN), but by the time you get to 10", the SCTs become too heavy and too expensive.

For me at 6' tall, a 10" dob also needs a pedestal of some sort, or a chair that goes down almost to the ground.

 

As for astrophotography, I would suggest this: a full night of astrophotography or a full night of visual observing, but not on the same night.


  • jimandlaura26 likes this

#24 jimandlaura26

jimandlaura26

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Posted 07 November 2022 - 07:36 PM

For last 20 years I have owned most every scope type from 70 mm to 250 mm aperture. Dabbled a bit with wide field astrophotography and modest EAA on my C-8 Edge (with Revolution Imager). Both of the latter had their challenges, but were enjoyable. Recently acquired a Unistellar eQuinox. Believe it to be a game changer for DSO’s on many fronts - size, weight, simplicity, outreach benefits, “visual” astronomy EAA quality. Here’s M-33 from last Saturday; a real hard get in any visual scope with usual light pollution challenges. Will keep my refractors, but have to rethink others…

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Edited by jimandlaura26, 07 November 2022 - 07:37 PM.


#25 Chad7531

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Posted 07 November 2022 - 07:41 PM

+1 (many times over) for Dark & Clear Skies!

A decent small telescope on calm and clear night will outperform a big aperture beast with $550 eyepieces on an overcast cloudy and windy night.

Why not have a large telescope under the same good conditions? My 10” in a bortle 7 isn’t all that different from a 6” in bortle 4. A 10” under bortle 4 is worth the time, the others just kind of kill time.

Edited by Chad7531, 07 November 2022 - 07:43 PM.



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