Equipment

Meade 8″ LX90 ACF

Since I made the decision in January 2015 to sell my Celestron C8, I have made several changes to other parts of my setup which have again made an 8″ Catadioptric Scope a realistic prospect on my mobile setup.   At Kelling Heath Star Party in 2015, I bought an iOptron Minitower II Alt-Az mount, […]

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My First Tentative Steps Into Video Astronomy

The idea of sharing my hobby has always been something that appeals to me, hence the creation of this site, and my involvement in my local astronomical society.  To me, the sharing of what I see and do is as important as the seeing and doing itself.  Don’t get me wrong; I love those quiet […]

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Waxing Lyrical About Power Plugs

A quick rundown of one of my pet peeves with Astro equipment – the faithful but troublesome 12v car cigar lighter connector – basically why they drive me crazy, and my solution to the issue on my own setup…

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First Light Report – Explore Scientific 305mm Ultralight Dobsonian.

What is it about astro gear that it lends itself to snap decisions in regards to buying and selling…!? I made just such a decision the other day.  First a bit of background…  From when I started in astronomy at 8 years old, until December 2012, all of my astronomy was good old fashioned manual-style. […]

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First Light – Ikharos 70ED Apo

This is a new acquisition to bring me back into wider-field imaging.  Since I sold my 80mm Revelation Semi-Apo, I’ve really missed being able to capture the larger objects, with less fussy guiding, and not much weight on the mount.  This little scope came up used, and so I went for it.  It’s one of the […]

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Sky-Watcher HEQ5 Pro – Guiding issues, servicing, and the Rowan Astronomy Belt Modification

Ah!  The good old HEQ5 Pro!  A great mount at a very pocket-friendly (well, relatively) price.  I’ve had mine for a few years now.  It’s a very solid mount, with a lot of features, and a pretty decent weight limit.  It can carry up to about 11Kg for imaging purposes (18Kg for visual).  It’s also […]

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Project – Hybrid Wireless Router / Power Splitter Box

A while back, I posted about using Skysafari to control your EQMOD interfaced mount via a wonderful little utility known as ‘WiFi Scope’.  In order to do this, you need some sort of wireless connection between an iPad/iphone and your laptop running EQMOD.   At the time, I was using a technique called ‘Ad-Hoc’ networking, […]

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Firecapture – An Introduction

I’ve been asked recently to help a few people who are new to imaging get their heads around planetary capture.  As a result, I’ve decided to produce my first screencast – an introduction and discussion of the main features of the planetary capture program ‘FireCapture’.  This little program is compatible with many of the planetary […]

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First Light With a New Planetary Camera: The ZWO ASI120MC on Mars and Jupiter – 13/04/2014

I’ve just become the owner of a new planetary camera – a ZW Optics ASI120MC. This post is the fruits of my first efforts with it.  Unfotunately, on a night of terrible seeing (the term astronomers use for he stability of the air), the results weren’t the best, but despite that, they still managed to […]

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Jupiter – Colour and Mono comparison

A quick post to illustrate the differences between processing data from the same night from a Toucam Pro and a QHY5v Mono taken through my f/6 Newtonian with a 2x Barlow.  The left pic is the Colour Toucam shot – approximately 1500 of 2000 frames.  The right hand shot is taken with the QHY5v Mono […]

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