New to serious astronomy

Don't be shy! If you're just starting out, here's the place to ask that first question

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Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2011 10:32 am
Location: Billericay

New to serious astronomy

Post by Dencrow »

I am new to serious astronomy,but out of impulse more than knowledge I have bought some useful equipment to advance my interest in astronomy such as :-
Canon EOS 550 D camera
Evostar 90mm Refractor with EQ3-2 mount
Celestron 15x70 binoculars
I have also put on order an Opteka 500mm mirrior lens to use with my camera although on second thoughts I not sure if this will be much use for astronomy,unless anyone out there can advise me otherwise.
My main interest at the moment is in getting into astroastronomy without spending a fortune.I would welcome advice from anyone who help me with this.
David Frydman
Posts: 5366
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 9:25 am

Post by David Frydman »

Dear Dennis,
The camera is very capable.
The scope should be very good, but others will advise with regard to astro imaging.
The 15x70 Celestron binoculars should be good as long as they are well collimated.
As these binoculars are not rugged you should provide extra protection when transporting them, say bubble wrap or a better well padded case. Don't give them any knocks as they may go out of collimation.
I have the 15x70 Revelation which are similar.
The opteka 500mm mirror lens maybe korean or chinese.
I think they also make various large refracting lenses or odd long zooms.
It should be of average or better quality. It probably will also work with a 2x teleconverter.
You have to focus manually i think.
You can get fair quality Moon photos with it, but better quality ones with the refractor, maybe stitching frames together?

Others here suggest the book 'Turn left at Orion' I think, the new updated edition.

The equipment you have is quite extensive for a newcomer.
Good luck and clear skies.

Regards, David
The Bat
Posts: 309
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 3:36 pm
Location: Gt Dunmow, Essex

Post by The Bat »

Hi Dennis

Welcome to the forum. Some nice equipment you have there for starters.

'Turn Left at Orion' is definitely a great book for beginners. A planisphere is also useful for helping you to get to know the sky.

One way of getting into serious astronomy without spending a fortune is to join a club. I notice you are in Billericay. I am in Dunmow and belong to the North Essex Astronomical Society. We have quite a few members from round Chelmsford way (and at least one in Billericay). We are quite an active society - we have monthly meetings and stargazing activities, and our own observatory - and one of the best ways to learn more is to join other people for observing and imaging sessions. You can try out different telescopes without buying anything, and this can really help if later on you decide to upgrade your own equipment.

If you're interested, have a look at :)

Hope you enjoy your new equipment.

Celestron C8-S XLT
CG5 mount, dual axis motor driven
Imaging Source DFK21AF04.AS camera
North Essex Astronomical Society
David Frydman
Posts: 5366
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 9:25 am

Post by David Frydman »

Dear Dennis,
If the 90mm Evostar has a focal length of 900mm it acts as a 900mm f/10 lens.
If the Canon 550 has a sensor size of 14.9 x 22.3 mm then the field covered is about 0.95 x 1.42 degrees.
As the Moon varies from about 29 to 33 arcminutes, it should easily fit in the frame if the drawtube does not vignet. I.e. it does not restrict the view.
If the scope has a 2x barlow, using that would give a bigger image scale.
If the drive is good or you guide it you could take longer exposures of other sky objects.

Regards, David
Posts: 169
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 10:51 pm
Location: somerset. U.K

Post by phillj »

Hello dennis and a warm welcome to SPA, and a belated Happy New Year.

skywatcher Explorer-130PM f/900
7x50 10x50 binoculars
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