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Quick Advice

  1. Jul 31, 2006 #1
    Hi there,

    I am purchasing a Celestron 11inch schmidt cassegrain with XLT coatings this week. But I have no become frustrated as to whether to purchase the C11-SGT (XLT) or the CPC 1100 GPS (XLT). I have come to the conclusion that the German Equatorial mount on the C11-SGT is far more efficient than the tripod on the CPC. But the C11 is less costly than that of the CPC.
    Can a person with the knowledeable expertise of cassegrains point me in the right direction please.

    And how would you compare a Celestron 11inch Schmidt cassegrain with a Meade 12 inch Schmidt cassegrain, because the celestron is more costly than the Meade even though its size is smaller.

    Thank you.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 1, 2006 #2

    Chronos

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    According to friends who have tried out both instruments, the Celestron is the better choice. I think you will be more satisfied with an equatorial mount, especially if you are interested in astrophotography. It is a little bulkier, but more stable and easier to set up IMO. Did I mention I am insanely jealous?
     
  4. Aug 1, 2006 #3
    Ok I got the Celestron 11inch schmidt cassegrain with XLT coatings and GPS with Star Aligner on the German Equatorial Mount. Pretty ******* Huge alright. This is my first telescope and I can see why you would be jealous now. hehe I cannot wait for the sun to set!!
     
  5. Aug 1, 2006 #4
    That for a first 'scope! You must've at least used on of those 60mm scopes, right?
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2006
  6. Aug 1, 2006 #5

    russ_watters

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    Wow, that's a big leap in with both feet, isn't it? I'm still talking about (not doing) my planned upgrade to the Orion Atlas 11, which uses the Celestron optical tube on an Orion Atlas equatorial mount.

    The reviews on the OTA are just spectacular. There is a guy named Christopher Go in the Phillippines who uses that OTA to watch Jupiter and his photos are so good NASA called him up to partner with them on a recent Hubble survey. They publish his photos in the main section (not the amateur submissions section) of Sky and Telescope and don't always even bother to mention they are amateur photos.
    http://jupiter.cstoneind.com/ [scroll halfway down for his best photos - the recent ones are so-so since Jupiter is getting pretty low]

    Not to push you away from this BB, but there is a dedicated amateur astronomy board called www.cloudynights.com that has a very active userbase - including Christopher Go.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2006
  7. Aug 2, 2006 #6
    Thanks for the links Russ, the Jupiter images look really nice. I had a nice peek at the crystal clear sky last night, but all I got with it was the star diagonal and a widefield lens. I observed Jupiter and two of its moons but it was quite small, I could still see cloudbands on it.
    I just ordered the Celestron eyepiece and filter kit.
    Could anyone advise on a nice high magnification eyepiece/s that I could purchase for this scope that will give me nice images of the planets and molecular clouds and galaxies?

    Its the first telescope ive ever peered through apart from mickymouse scopes like tasco, pah!
    I have been interested in Astronomy since I was about 6 or 7 years old but I my parents could never afford a decent celestron/meade/orion telescope. I just got a job and now I could afford one :biggrin:. The view of the sky in the countryside is awesome, and that was what got me into the Beautiful field of science!! Though I am fascinated with all the sciences and how they all merge towards quantum physics.
    So after I finish my physics degree that I am currently studying, I plan to do the Astrophysics Msc. My greatest ambition. :biggrin:
     
  8. Aug 2, 2006 #7
    As Russ suggested, I would definitely sign up with the Cloudy Nights forum. You are going to have A LOT of questions concerning equipment, techniques, etc. CN is a great forum and everyone there is very helpful and responsive to such questions.
     
  9. Aug 2, 2006 #8
    I am so jealous you don't even know.

    I love my 8 inch dobsonian but.....damn.
     
  10. Aug 2, 2006 #9

    russ_watters

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    I'm guessing the eyepiece you got was 25 or 26mm? That gives you a magnification of about 110x. You'll probably want two or three more, one of 9-11mm (~280x) and one of 12-17mm (~190x). Or you can get a 15mm eyepiece and use a Barlow to double the magnification with either. You'll probably also want wider field of views than that 26mm eyepiece gives you - a 40+mm eyepiece and maybe even a focal reducer.

    And get decent quality, too...

    Since I don't know the real limitations and capabilities of that OTA and people can be very particular about eyepieces, you may want to ask around for more advice.

    You have a lot of learning to do, but if you think you may be into taking pictures, you may want to grab a webcam, rip out the lens, and attach it to the hole where the eyepiece would go. On Christopher Go's website, for the photos in the "best photos" section, he used a C8 and a webcam.

    Jupiter is dropping fast on the horizon and it is going to be about 6 months before it is going to be in a reasonable place in the morning sky. And Saturn won't be around for another 4 months. In the meantime, though, there are plenty of deep-sky objects (and the moon) to see visually - next time you are out, have it slew to M13....

    And if I may ask, where are you located and what are your sky conditions like?
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2006
  11. Aug 2, 2006 #10
    I received a 40mm plossl eyepiece with it.

    I have the celestron eyepiece and filter kit on order at the moment so I should receive it within the next few days. Can You name some decent eyepiece manufacturers for me?
    I also got the NexImage SolarSystem Imager and I downloaded Registax too.

    So a barlow doubles the magnification? If that is right can I slot a 9mm eyepiece into a barlow?

    I am located in Dublin, Ireland in an area where the light pollution is concentrated to the East and little light pollution to the West.

    The constellation Orion must be below the horizon too cause I cannot seem to find it.
     
  12. Aug 2, 2006 #11
    Orion doesn't come out at night this time of the year. You have to wait for the winter months for that.
     
  13. Aug 2, 2006 #12
    Oh ok i thought so.
     
  14. Aug 2, 2006 #13
    Is it possible to view nubulae and galaxies with the 40mm eyepiece without a camera and only a NexImager Solar System Imager?
     
  15. Aug 2, 2006 #14

    russ_watters

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    What you are getting should be good for now. It'll give you a nice range of magnifications. A 9mm eyepiece and a Barlow (they come in several different magnifications) would give you far above your usable magnification (you'd see a blurry mess). A barlow may be useful for the photography, but it is tough to image at high magnification, so you should probably practice without it first.
    Good tools, both.
    Good to know (easier to point things out to you in the sky).
    It is going to be several months before Orion is up in the evening.
    The NexImage gets used without an eyepiece, but no, you probably won't be able to see galaxies and nebulae with it. It doesn't take long enough exposures.
     
  16. Aug 3, 2006 #15

    Chronos

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