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 Post subject: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 12:10 pm 
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Hi

looking at the Explorer 200PDS and the Skymax 150 pro, which is the more versatile given that eventually I will wanting to use my 600D and a webcam for Astrophotography. If I do go for either it will be on a EQ5 pro with SynScan?

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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 5:38 pm 
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Bill,
The Maksutovs have long slow focal lenghts ideal for webcaming the planets. Your 600D could be used on the Moon - perhaps in full colour!
The Newtonian is more of an all rounder - not as good for the planets/Moon but if you are contemplating deep-sky imaging with the 600D then it is more suitable. Be aware that deep-sky imaging is onerous but brighter objects (Messier) can be imaged with perhaps up to 2 minute exposures. They will not be winners but will have detail and colour. The faint stuff is much more difficult and requires long exposures, guiding and ideally a modified camera (filter swapped).
I wouldn't rush into anything - try out the society's kit and see what will suit you.


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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 7:22 pm 
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The reflector has a focal length of 1000mm and a 200mm aperture (f/5) whereas the Maksutov is 1800/150 = f/12.
So the Mak will produce an image 80% larger, but would require nearly six times the exposure time.

But if you got the Newtonian you could add a Barlow lens or use eyepiece projection to increase the image size for webcam/planetary work.
Whereas maybe you could use a focal reducer with the Maksutov, but I don't think that you'd get to the same DSLR field of view as the Newtonian would offer.

But note that Newtonian's tube is one and a half times as heavy (and so you'll need more counterweights too) as the Maksutov, and more than twice as long - OK if you plan to have it semi-permanently mouted at home, but not ideal to carry in and out of the car!
Have you considered their 6" Newtonian (750/150mm) which is actually lighter than the Maksutov, and only 1.6x the length?

And have a think about ED refractors too - the view I had of Mars on Wednesday though our new StarWave 80 was stunning.
The StarWave 80 is 555/80mm (f/7) as supplied, but there is an f/5.6 focal-reducer available for it. It's about the same length as the 6" Maksutov, but only half the weight. And they also make 102 & 110mm versions - I think the 102 is the one Gerald's got (for which he's forsaken his Ritchey–Chrétien)


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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 10:31 pm 
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Thanks for the feedback Gents

As a newbie there is so much choice and I'm keen to get a scope which help me increase my skills and knowledge of the equipment and the solar system.

As I said before the aim is to extend into astrophotography, however I need to mastered a few skills and to get to know the sky better so for now I want a scope which will produce reasonable results and to be portable as I'm intending to take the equipment with me when we are out with the caravan, which therefore really rules out the reflector. I did consider the 6" but got carried away with aperture size, I will revisit this option . As I intend to start with the moon and planets, it's looking more like the Mak as and the focal length appeals to me, I believe I can cope with the longer exposure times and it's going to be easier to store and transport.

I did contemplate a Refractor but when visiting a couple of the local suppliers they implied that I would have to pay a lot of money to get good results and they kept steering me away from them.

All that and I have not got a mount yet, not wanting to waste any money if I did go for one of the above I was going straight for the EQ5 with the SynScan GOTO system.

I have also spent some time looking at the Skymax 127 AZ GOTO it looks really portable and ideal for when out with the Caravan.

If I have not taken the plunge before the next meet I will enquire about the loan of some equipment as all I have to compare is the very old Tasco 3" on a mount which is useless

Once again thanks for your help and guidance

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Celestron C8
SkyWatcher 80ED Apro
Sky-Watcher Skymax-127 SynScan AZ GOTO
Canon 600D
Canon 400D
Opticstar PX-35C COOLAIR CCD camera


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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 6:47 am 
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bbones wrote:
I did contemplate a Refractor but when visiting a couple of the local suppliers they implied that I would have to pay a lot of money to get good results and they kept steering me away from them.


Well we bought the StarWave 80 OTA last week for under £300 - but you'll need to add a finder, diagonal and eyepieces if you don't already have them.


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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:41 am 
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Thanks for the offer.

I think I need to make a leap of faith without going mad as I have had some luck with the Tasco but being honest the eyepeices poor the mount makes it difficult to keep the subject in view, I think your term is wackery well never mind a wack you just need to touch it ;) and therefore not worth investing any money. It's done it's job but time to move on.

Off to tidy the garden up and will review the many options while working in the sun, That one more subject for later as I would also like to carry out some solar work....
I've come to the conclusion with the help of your good selves that these is no ideal solution as each type has its strenghts and usage

Thanks for all the input, I will keep both posted

Bill

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Sky-Scan EQ3-2
Celestron C8
SkyWatcher 80ED Apro
Sky-Watcher Skymax-127 SynScan AZ GOTO
Canon 600D
Canon 400D
Opticstar PX-35C COOLAIR CCD camera


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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:52 am 
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Bill, If your going on Tuesday evening your welcome to have a play with my 200P + EQ5, which is very similar the 200PDS.

The 200P does have a single speed focuser compared to the PDS which comes with the dual speed crayford. I think the PDS also has a slightly shorter tube length to aid focusing when imaging and it also has a bigger secondary Mirror but physically they look almost identical.

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Skywatcher Explorer 200P & EQ5


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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:09 pm 
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I've come to the conclusion with the help of your good selves that these is no ideal solution as each type has its strenghts and usage

You are correct! I will admit to having 4 telescopes but don't let on!


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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:56 pm 
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Yes like all my hobbies I have mutilpe equipment, Guitars 3, Radios 4, Computers 3, my wife always ask why more than one I always reply why have you got 100 pairs of shoes :lol:

Looks like Telescopes 2 at least........ but which one first?


Phil, I'm planning to there on Tuesday, just sorting out someone to have the phone as I'm the duty manager this week,I understand it's nearly the same, in fact one shop said it was a better buy. They must have too much stock.

Well it's been a steep curve and I'm sure It's not going to get any easier.

Back to more light reading this eveniing on the pros and cons of telescopes and hope to get some viewing in.

Thanks for all you help guys, with out the Society this would have been harder and knowing me I would have bought the wrong mount

Bill

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SkyWatcher HEQ5
Sky-Scan EQ3-2
Celestron C8
SkyWatcher 80ED Apro
Sky-Watcher Skymax-127 SynScan AZ GOTO
Canon 600D
Canon 400D
Opticstar PX-35C COOLAIR CCD camera


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 Post subject: Re: Refector or Maksutov-Cassegrain
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 8:58 am 
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Phil

Great might Tuesday and thanks for letting me use your scope, managed to find the knobs ;)

Did you get the colimation sorted, still not sure about having to rotate the tube as you move about the sky.

Regards

Bill

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SkyWatcher HEQ5
Sky-Scan EQ3-2
Celestron C8
SkyWatcher 80ED Apro
Sky-Watcher Skymax-127 SynScan AZ GOTO
Canon 600D
Canon 400D
Opticstar PX-35C COOLAIR CCD camera


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