Thank you so much for your much appreciated information for a humble beginner like me. 😀
a) The ST80 might be a little overkill. A nice 50mm guide scope might be better as it is lighter. I don't know how much
imaging you would be doing at f/10.
Just based on my observational experience (I welcome corrections to my assumptions), I figured that I'll be imaging some/many objects at f10, such as planets (tracking barely required), but also objects like the Ring Nebula M57 (and other small "bright" Messier objects) will have more detail at f/10... so I may benefit with the ST80 tracking. Besides, I already own it when I replaced the useless factory finder supplied by Celestron. It doesn't seem to burden my EQ mount.
b) The ZWO ASI290MM Mini is a good guide camera. It has a little more resolution and faster frame rate than the old
standard ASI120MM Mini.
Thank you for the suggestion. I'll put that on my shopping list. 😃
c) Some things to consider for an imaging camera:
--1. Color or monochrome. One shot color gives you great images and involves a lot less time to get the image.
--2. As you mentioned, cooled or not. You can get some decent images with an uncooled camera. If you want to do
long exposures, cooled cameras are better.
--3. The amount of resolution the camera has. What you might want to do is download Stellarium, put in your scope at
f/7, and enter the specs for a number of cameras to see what type of objects it would cover. I recently purchased the
ASI533MC and love it. I am using it on a 127mm refractor at f/4.8.
Since, I am just beginning (walk, don't run philosophy) and I would like to keep the cost down to around $400. Is that even possible to obtain satisfactory results? I'd love to do color for planets, but maybe monochrome will offer better results, and the same camera could be updated to RGBL via a color wheel? And when I've proven worthy, I can treat myself to an upgraded cooled monochrome camera and better color wheel. 🙂
So, perhaps a ASI178MM is good enough for a beginner, and for general purpose (planetary and bright deepsky objects)?
d) The ASIAIR only supports the ZWO EAF focuser. However you can use another focuser if you have an electronic
While since the ZWO EAF is discontinued... oh wait, they have a new version with a proper bracket for my EdgeHD 800.
I think I can easily sell my Celestron auto-focuser. 🙂
Welcome to the world of astrophotography.
Thank you. 🙂