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Astronomy For the sharing of astronomical observations by our members with an interest, and pretty pictures for all to enjoy.

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Old Jul 10 2009, 07:07 AM   #1
P'ter
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I've just collected a Meade ETX127 from a guy in London who'd bought it and chickened out of setting it up. It's complete with the computor links and has never been out of its box: it's still got the foam wedges in place.

As soon as I've got my own place I'm going to have some fun!


(Thanks Hans )
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Old Jul 10 2009, 01:15 PM   #2
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Congrats, P'ter


(you mean the ETX, right?)
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Old Jul 10 2009, 01:46 PM   #3
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Well, that's one way of keeping track of the neighbors!
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Old Jul 11 2009, 07:50 AM   #4
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Oh yay Peter! Have fun with it!
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Old Jul 12 2009, 06:56 AM   #5
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Have fun P'ter. You have one-upped me - I have an ETX 105.

The computer setup can be quite fiddly. I find it helps to have an eyepiece with cross hairs so you can run the calibration and alignment procedures more accurately.

I have a camera attachment for my ETX - I had a notion of using it as a huge telephoto camera lens, but haven't got around to trying it properly yet. I just have a few test photos of a neighbour's roof!

I'll be interested to hear what you observe with it.
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Old Jul 12 2009, 02:18 PM   #6
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Wow, having a camera attachment for that kind of equipment would be fatastic. Mind you, not for me, at least, not where I live
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Old Jul 13 2009, 08:01 AM   #7
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To fit a camera attachment you need two specially-shaped bits of metal:
  • A camera adaptor designed for your particular make of telescope.
  • A "T adaptor" for your particular make of camera
For some examples see http://www.green-witch.com/acatalog/...d_T_rings.html.

When I couple up the ETX to my camera I lose all the auto focus and auto exposure capabilities, so the camera has to be operated in manual mode.
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Old Jul 13 2009, 08:48 AM   #8
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Steven, looking at those pictures I can't help wondering... for photography like this would you recommend old fashioned film loaded SLR cameras or digital SLR?
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Old Jul 13 2009, 04:39 PM   #9
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For photography with a telescope, I'd recommend a digital SLR for the simple fact that the camera's exposure meter may not work and you need to make the exposures in manual mode. With a digital SLR you can make as many test exposures as you like and delete the bad ones.

Having said that, some digital cameras limit the maximum length of exposure you can make (or will run out of battery power during a really long exposure in the cold). For maximum flexibility you could go to the opposite extreme and try an old fashioned completely manual film camera. You can prop open a manual shutter for as long as you like.

By the way, although we're talking about coupling up a camera to a telescope, you may very well get the best photographs by attaching the camera to the side of a telescope (with a "piggy back" mount) and just using its drive mechanism to track the stars.
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Old Jul 13 2009, 04:46 PM   #10
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Ah... that's sounds eminently sensible
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Old Jul 13 2009, 04:48 PM   #11
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That was quick. You answered while I was still editing my typos.
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