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Cambridge Double Star Atlas v Cambridge Star Atlas.

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#1 quirkster1

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Posted 06 April 2024 - 08:35 PM

Hi,

 

I recently purchased the digital copy of the Cambridge Double Star Atlas.  It’s a great resource for double stars and will most likely keep me off the streets for the rest of my life.

 

However, for general observing, I’m starting to notice that it’s missing the odd deep sky object.  The most notable example being Barnard’s Loop in Orion, which is missing from the CDSA, but strangely is included in my far more basic set of charts, also by Wil Trion.  

 

Therefore, I’m thinking of getting the Cambridge Star Atlas as a backup, as it presumably would have a more comprehensive range of DSO’s.  But before I part with my hard earned, I thought that I’d check with those who know more about these charts to make sure that my assumption’s correct.

 

Cheers & thanks,

 

 

Ian,

Attached Thumbnails

  • Orion.jpg
  • orion south.jpg

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#2 wrvond

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Posted 06 April 2024 - 08:50 PM

Off the cuff, my double star atlas has more charts and is quite a bit thicker than my star atlas.

I've got to dig them out of my backpack to do a more detailed comparison.

 

The scale of the Double Star Atlas is much greater than the Star Atlas. For example the chart 14 in the double star covers two pages - 4h to 8h and +20° to -20°. In the Star Atlas, Orion is on chart 9 - a single page covering 3h20m to 8h40m and +28° to -28°.

 

Screenshot 2024-04-06 221604.jpg

 

The CSA plots stars down to mag 6.1-6.5 while the CDSA plots stars down to mag 7.0-7.5 and fainter.

 

The CDSA is by definition oriented towards double stars and the target lists and such reflect that. The CSA, on the other hand, includes charts of the moon, has seasonal sky maps, Messier object charts, and a wealth of other information.

It's a great tool if you are using a smaller scope. By limiting the magnitude of the plotted stars they were able to use a smaller scale and fit it on a single page. The facing page of each chart contains lists of Variable stars, double stars, Open clusters, bright diffuse nebulae, planetary nebula and galaxies that are plotted on that chart.


Edited by wrvond, 06 April 2024 - 09:26 PM.

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#3 quirkster1

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 03:28 AM

Off the cuff, my double star atlas has more charts and is quite a bit thicker than my star atlas.

I've got to dig them out of my backpack to do a more detailed comparison.

 

The scale of the Double Star Atlas is much greater than the Star Atlas. For example the chart 14 in the double star covers two pages - 4h to 8h and +20° to -20°. In the Star Atlas, Orion is on chart 9 - a single page covering 3h20m to 8h40m and +28° to -28°.

 

attachicon.gif Screenshot 2024-04-06 221604.jpg

 

The CSA plots stars down to mag 6.1-6.5 while the CDSA plots stars down to mag 7.0-7.5 and fainter.

 

The CDSA is by definition oriented towards double stars and the target lists and such reflect that. The CSA, on the other hand, includes charts of the moon, has seasonal sky maps, Messier object charts, and a wealth of other information.

It's a great tool if you are using a smaller scope. By limiting the magnitude of the plotted stars they were able to use a smaller scale and fit it on a single page. The facing page of each chart contains lists of Variable stars, double stars, Open clusters, bright diffuse nebulae, planetary nebula and galaxies that are plotted on that chart.

Thank for your reply mate, it's most informative.

 

From what I gather, the CDSA has more detailed charts while the CSA has a good range of ancillary information that the CDSA, being a more specialized atlas, doesn’t have.  So, they would probably complement each other.  As both of the charts don’t show the loop (which seems to be a significant omission), I would say that they both have the same range of DSO’s.  

 

I like it that the CSA has a list of targets on the facing page of each chart, which would be most useful.  For that alone, I’d probably get it. 

 

Once again thanks, it’s most appreciated.

 

Cheers,

 

Ian.


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#4 Tony Flanders

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 05:11 AM

The Cambridge Star Atlas is very much an overview atlas, showing stars only down to magnitude 6.5, and an extremely limited number of deep-sky objects. Quite similar in that way to the (much cheaper) Bright Star Atlas and the venerable Norton's.

 

If you want the next level of detail, the Pocket Sky Atlas is the obvious choice.


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#5 pugliano

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 12:06 PM

Off the cuff, my double star atlas has more charts and is quite a bit thicker than my star atlas.

I've got to dig them out of my backpack to do a more detailed comparison.

 

The scale of the Double Star Atlas is much greater than the Star Atlas. For example the chart 14 in the double star covers two pages - 4h to 8h and +20° to -20°. In the Star Atlas, Orion is on chart 9 - a single page covering 3h20m to 8h40m and +28° to -28°.

 

attachicon.gif Screenshot 2024-04-06 221604.jpg

 

The CSA plots stars down to mag 6.1-6.5 while the CDSA plots stars down to mag 7.0-7.5 and fainter.

 

The CDSA is by definition oriented towards double stars and the target lists and such reflect that. The CSA, on the other hand, includes charts of the moon, has seasonal sky maps, Messier object charts, and a wealth of other information.

It's a great tool if you are using a smaller scope. By limiting the magnitude of the plotted stars they were able to use a smaller scale and fit it on a single page. The facing page of each chart contains lists of Variable stars, double stars, Open clusters, bright diffuse nebulae, planetary nebula and galaxies that are plotted on that chart.

That's super helpful! I was just considering the same thing as Ian. As primarily a binocular user now, I think I'd prefer the CSA for it being a little less cluttered (detailed), showing more of the sky on one page, and for the adjacent page with the list highlighting various objects to view. For more detailed maps I have the Jumbo PSA.


Edited by pugliano, 07 April 2024 - 06:58 PM.

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#6 yuzameh

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 12:17 PM

The Cambridge Star Atlas is very much an overview atlas, showing stars only down to magnitude 6.5, and an extremely limited number of deep-sky objects. Quite similar in that way to the (much cheaper) Bright Star Atlas and the venerable Norton's.

 

If you want the next level of detail, the Pocket Sky Atlas is the obvious choice.

In general, and purely objectively with no snide intent, normal practice nowadays is to openly state even the mere outside potential of conflicts of interest, such that when one recommends a product from a particular commercial organisation one should declare their association with said organisation.  Even science papers do this nowadays.  Doesn't stop one adding that irrespective of the association that the opinion given is a personal and intendedly objective one.

 

Not the same level as needing to be a vendor forum entry or vendor flag on the avatar/nickname, but certainly only different in degree and not different in kind.


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#7 wrvond

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 02:45 PM

That's super helpful! I was just considering the same thing as Ian. As primarily a binocular user now, I think I'd prefer the CSA for it being a little less cluttered (detailed), showing more of the sky one one page, and for the adjacent page with the list highlighting various objects to view. For more detailed maps I have the Jumbo PSA.

Here's another book you may find helpful:

 

Screenshot 2024-04-07 154114.jpg

 

Screenshot 2024-04-07 154152.jpg

 

 

TBC


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#8 wrvond

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 02:46 PM

Continued:

 

Screenshot 2024-04-07 154302.jpg

 

Screenshot 2024-04-07 154228.jpg


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#9 quirkster1

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 04:42 PM

The Cambridge Star Atlas is very much an overview atlas, showing stars only down to magnitude 6.5, and an extremely limited number of deep-sky objects. Quite similar in that way to the (much cheaper) Bright Star Atlas and the venerable Norton's.

 

If you want the next level of detail, the Pocket Sky Atlas is the obvious choice.

Hi Tony,

 

Thanks for your insight and tip on the Pocket Sky Atlas.

 

I'll definitely check it out. 

 

Cheers,

 

Ian


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#10 pugliano

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 07:02 PM

Yep, thanks. I had that one! Lost it somehow during a move. I had the first edition though, not the updated one. Thanks for reminding me about it! I'll need to order it again.


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#11 Tony Flanders

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Posted 09 April 2024 - 07:05 AM

I said:
 

The Cambridge Star Atlas is very much an overview atlas, showing stars only down to magnitude 6.5, and an extremely limited number of deep-sky objects. Quite similar in that way to the (much cheaper) Bright Star Atlas and the venerable Norton's.
 
If you want the next level of detail, the Pocket Sky Atlas is the obvious choice.

 
And yuzameh responded:
 

In general, and purely objectively with no snide intent, normal practice nowadays is to openly state even the mere outside potential of conflicts of interest, such that when one recommends a product from a particular commercial organisation one should declare their association with said organisation.


Quite true; sorry. I have no financial interest whatsoever in the Pocket Sky Atlas, but I have a great deal of sentimental attachment to it, since I was working at Sky & Telescope when it was conceived and created, and I'm credited in the introduction. I also (like everyone else at S&T) revere Roger Sinnott, its author, for his amazing erudition, his brilliant aesthetic sense, and his attention to detail.

 

Incidentally, I think I gave the final push to the creation of the Jumbo edition. Roger and others at S&T were quite skeptical that it would have much appeal until I got the brilliant idea of using our photocopier to make a 125% copy of one of the charts from the original. To which the response was "Oh my goodness, now I see what you're talking about."


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