My Equipment

Here is my long, drawn out description of the equipment I’m using and how and why I selected it. I included my original setup from 2005 as well.

My Original Setup (2005) the day I got it. That OTA was 32lbs!

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  • Mount: Meade LXD-75 with Meade Autostar 497 hand controller
  • OTA: Meade 10 inch Schmidt Newtonian
    • This is a 10 inch F/4 Newtonian reflector with a corrector plate on the front to help with coma (stars at the edge looking like seagulls)
  • Meade LPI (Lunar Planetary Imager)
    • 0.32 megapixel CMOS sensor
    • Exposure time: 1/1000s-16s
    • Maximum video frames per second: 3
  • Meade DSI (Deep Sky Imager)
    • 0.25 megapixel 16bit CCD sensor
    • Exposure time: 1/10,000s-60m
  • Software
    • Telescope Control: Meade Autostar Suite
    • Guiding: None – nothing like PHD existed yet
    • Image Capture: Meade Envisage
    • Image “Stacking” and Processing: Meade Envisage & Paint Shop Pro

Current Setup (2019)

setup
  • Mount: Meade LXD-75 with Meade Autostar 497 hand controller
  • OTA: GSO 6-inch F4 Newtonian
    • These GSO scopes are sold, and usually branded through some of the larger US telescope dealers such as High Point Scientific, AstroTech, OPT, etc. The sellers willingly admit that they are just slapping their sticker on the OTA, as this is a cheap service that GSO offers. It’s really more for advertising than the shop trying to convince people that they’re making their own scopes. This one is a TPO from OPT
  • Guide Scope: ZWO 60mm guidescope with helical focuser)
  • Guide Camera: ZWO ASI120MC
  • Imaging Camera: ZWO ASI071MC-Pro
  • Filters:
    • Optolong L-Pro
    • Hutech IDAS NB1
    • Astromania 12nm H-alpha, 2in
  • Coma Corrector: Baader MPCC Mark III
  • Software
    • Telescope Control: Astrophotography Tool using POTH
    • Guiding: PHD2
    • Plate Solving and Object Targeting: PointCraft embedded in Astrophotography Tool
    • Image Capture: Astrophotography Tool
    • Image stacking: Deep Sky Stacker
    • Image processing: Photoshop CC

I used to have the longest possible description for each piece of equipment and why I chose it on this page, but I realized it was steering towards what was applicable to my specific situation. Different objectives, locations and goals require different equipment. I’m not an expert, but this is what works for me.

Clear Skies, Bleary Eyes – KA