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    Default astrophotography



    I want to dive into this side of hobby! I have $6000-70000CAD. I've bought a few books. But can't decide on a refractor setup or a Celestron CGX EQUATORIAL 925 HD.

    There are sooo many refractor to chose from I just don't know. Can someone tell me what is the biggest difference between a cassegrain and a refractor. Is it mostly field of view?
    Shawn Bailey "We are so very small"
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    Default Re: astrophotography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn B View Post
    Can someone tell me what is the biggest difference between a cassegrain and a refractor.
    Concerning AP, that would be the speed (f/#) of the scope. Cassegrains are quite slow (except with a focal reducer). A refractor good for imaging will be fast (and faster still with a focal reducer).

    Your best bet is a short APO refractor with appropriate focal reducer/field flattener. Aperture here is mostly meaningless.

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    Default Re: astrophotography

    Get a good mount first of all such as the CGX. Refractors are great for large objects, and are the easiest to use. For smaller ones such as galaxies you need a longer focal length such as the 925HD. Best to wait with that until you have more experience because they take a lot more time and accuracy. A good mount will help a lot.
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    Default Re: astrophotography

    So a refractor is best for nebulea and planets? Suggestions? Thanks.
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    Default Re: astrophotography

    Meade 115mm ED TRIPLET APO #4507-00-05 Does anyone have experience with this one.
    Shawn Bailey "We are so very small"
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    Default Re: astrophotography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn B View Post
    So a refractor is best for nebulea and planets? Suggestions? Thanks.
    Those are two completely different targets and are imaged best in completely different ways.

    The refractor will do a good job on most nebulae, not so much on planets. You need lots of focal length to image planets, not so for most nebulae. You need long exposure times on an equatorial mount to image nebulae, you image planets shooting fast frame rate video on any tracking mount. Lots of differences including the scope, possibly mount, and camera used.
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    Default Re: astrophotography

    Thank you so much! A refractor it is. I'm going to start looking at apo refracters. So i guess I'm aiming for larger objects using a refracter on a very solid mount like a CGX? I have to research mounts.

    CCD or DSLR?

    Thanks agian.
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    Default Re: astrophotography

    Another mount consideration is portability. Long exposures can be done in light-polluted places, but get washed out by sky glow with too much exposure time. In general, the darker the sky, the better the result. That said, if you’ll plan to set up out in the field, a good portable mount (Like the Skywatcher EQ6-R Pro) is the way to go and would be perfect for a refractor or smaller Cassegrain. However, a CGX would be more cumbersome but leave more room to grow with respect to payload.

    A CCD or CMOS camera usually has a chip cooling system, which is optimal for AP, but many people get fantastic results with DSLRs.

    Mike
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    Default Re: astrophotography

    Quote Originally Posted by chartram View Post
    Another mount consideration is portability. Long exposures can be done in light-polluted places, but get washed out by sky glow with too much exposure time. In general, the darker the sky, the better the result. That said, if you’ll plan to set up out in the field, a good portable mount (Like the Skywatcher EQ6-R Pro) is the way to go and would be perfect for a refractor or smaller Cassegrain. However, a CGX would be more cumbersome but leave more room to grow with respect to payload.

    A CCD or CMOS camera usually has a chip cooling system, which is optimal for AP, but many people get fantastic results with DSLRs.

    Mike
    That mount looks fantastic. I imagine the belt drive must be extremely smooth (no gear backlash)?

    Thank you. Ok looks like I've got scope and mount covered. Now to look for a DSLR.

    THANKS EVERYONE!
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    Default Re: astrophotography

    Hi Shawn,

    Do you already have a DSLR? It's so, use that to start. They are typically the easiest option to learn all of the myriad facets for acquiring an image. If you don't have a DSLR, I recommend you find, and they are easy to find, a Canon T3i. These cameras, gently used, run less than $300.

    After you get the mount, the OTA, and the camera, there are still other parts to the AP equation that need answering. I think with your budget you don't need to start with the unguided option. so now you need to look into an inexpensive auto guiding system. This consists of a smaller telescope, usually a refractor, and an additional camera. The autoguiding setup typically does not cost more than $400.

    Cheers and welcome to the dark side,
    JT
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