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Thread: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

  1. #1
    Astronewb's Avatar
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    Thumbs up SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)



    This is a follow up to my original thread on the SmartEQ Pro mount. I did a very quick polar scope/mount axis alignment and set up real quick for some test autoguiding images.

    When I say quick...I mean a rough initial polar align and a slew to Capella...done. Used the 50mm Borg guided by a Orion Mini50/SSAG. After plugging in to the mount, I found it likes a high (2600) calibration setting. I was using a star near Capella to calibrate.

    Here are some quick images that I just adjusted the gray point on in Nikon's View NX software to subdue the red caste from my modded camera. All are on Capella.

    60 second image
    60 Secs.JPG

    120 second image
    120 Secs.JPG

    180 second image
    180 Secs.JPG

    240 second image
    240 Secs.JPG

    This mount has just exceeded my expectations. It's new out of the box, I haven't had time to fine tune any settings, the balance was rough, and there was NO 2 Star Align to minimize polar offset. If I had to guess...I'd say I was within 10 arc minutes of the NCP.

    If anyone has been holding back wondering what the unit is capable of, it's time to order one. With some fine tuning and tripod modifications (needs to be stiffer), it is a winner as a grab 'n go mount for light otas or wide field camera lens imaging. Imho.

    Cheers all,

    Paul
    Life's a journey, enjoy the ride
    OTA's: Borg 125SD, AR152mm, ES152mm Comet Hunter Orion xx14g , SVR90T-AP, AT6RC, AT10RC, Borg 60ED. Borg 50mm Achro
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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Congrats on your new mount! Can't wait to see more images from you!
    Scopes: Celestron 8SE, Explore Scientific 80mm Triplet APO on a Celestron AVX mount, Bushnell 7x35 Binos
    Cameras: QHY9M (Mono), Canon T4i, QHY5L-II (Color)
    EPs: Explore Scientific 30mm 82 degree EP, University Optics Orthos 9mm, 8-24mm Meade Zoom, several Celestron 1.25" EPs
    Filters: 2" Badaar LRGB and Ha filters, 2" Orion Sky Glow AP filter, Moon filter, UHC filters, planetary filters.

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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Hello Paul. Well, that is a pretty slick mount. And as you say, probably great for a grab and go setup. I'm sure as the word gets around, the sales of these mounts are going to take off. Thanks for the report. Best of regards,
    - Marshall (Amateur Radio Station AD4KD)
    Orion Astroview 120ST f/5 Refractor on EQ3 mount
    Celestron Omni XLT150R f/5 Refractor on CG4 mount with dual axis drives.
    Orion 180mm f/15 Maksutov-Cassegrain on CG5-GT Goto mount.
    Orion XT12i 12" f/4.9 Dobsonian Intelliscope.
    >)))))*>

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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Quote Originally Posted by Makuser View Post
    Hello Paul. Well, that is a pretty slick mount. And as you say, probably great for a grab and go setup. I'm sure as the word gets around, the sales of these mounts are going to take off. Thanks for the report. Best of regards,
    This mount has to be a winner for iOptron, I don't think there are any other makers at this price point that can do what this mount can. Easy to store, transport and use. Go-to's spot on, and stable enough for imaging with autoguiding. I like the fact I can pick it up with one hand, with the ota mounted, and carry it in and out of the house in one trip.

    Cheers,

    Paul
    Life's a journey, enjoy the ride
    OTA's: Borg 125SD, AR152mm, ES152mm Comet Hunter Orion xx14g , SVR90T-AP, AT6RC, AT10RC, Borg 60ED. Borg 50mm Achro
    Mounts: iOptron CEM60EC, iEQ45, ZEQ25, Mini Tower Pro, SEQ Pro.
    Misc: Lots of EP's. Nikon D5100, Canon T3i, ATF2FF , GSO Coma Corrector. SSAG, QHY5L-II & Lodestar
    My Flickr DSO set> https://www.flickr.com/photos/astronewb2011/sets/

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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Congrats, Paul, and a great report,,, with pictures! Darn, now I have NO excuse not to do AP while on vacation
    Sky-Watcher PRO 120 ED/CGEM , Orion ED80T CF imaging scope, with Mini-50 Guidescope/SSAG, Electric Focuser for AP and a Red Dot Finder, : Grab-n-Go's: Orion 8xt with Red Dot finder; and an ST80 in a Versago II mount with red dot finder and 50mm r/a finder. Travel Scope: (lives in my car) Orion 70mm Backpack Goscope Eyepieces:-- ES "82" 24mm, 18mm, 6.7mm; GSO ED 2-in 2x Barlow; 5mm, 10mm, and 20mm Brand X eps for the ST80. Other: Canon EOS T2i; a really old laptop, 20-foot cables, cords, battery-packs, adapters, and more junk every week
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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Now just waiting to see what WO scope they pair the #3200 version with, if any...
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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Thanks for sharing and great find ! I can't wait to see some more pics. The weight capacity according to the specs is 11 pds. I think the ota of my 120 St is 11. Do you think it would work with my scope or is it too heavy in your opinion ? If it does work out it may be my chance to do some ap in the near future.
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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Good report Paul. Even at 240 seconds the image is acceptable. You are right though, I think the mount gets a bad rep because it is not expensive. Well the CG5 certainly does an great job and it is not expensive either. You don't need to spend $1,500 to get a mount to perform well. Unfortunately, you have to spend more to carry more of a load! It would be awesome if someone could make a robust, excellent tracking mount capable of 50 pound loads for under $800. DREAMS!!!!!!
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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Great news Paul. Now I have another thing on my wish list.

    Joe
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    Default Re: SmartEQ will do 4 minutes autoguiding (images)

    Quote Originally Posted by Astronewb View Post
    If anyone has been holding back wondering what the unit is capable of, it's time to order one. With some fine tuning and tripod modifications (needs to be stiffer), it is a winner as a grab 'n go mount for light otas or wide field camera lens imaging.
    Great news. That was probably the clincher for to order one with Christmas bonus

    Did you make, or plan, tripod modifications yet? What would you think needs to be done?
    ChuckWalters likes this.
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