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SkyQuest XT8 Accessories

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dougum3882

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I recently purchased the Orion SkyQuest XT8 and I love it. I want to expand on my accessories, but I'm not sure what to get. I enjoy looking at (in order): galaxies (although I have yet to see one even though I've tried, but galaxies fascinate me the most), planets, nebulas, and the moon. I have the 10mm and 25mm eyepieces which came with the telescope, but from what I've read, I need a low magnification eye piece for galaxies, a high magnification eye piece for the planets and filters for the moon and nebulas. Is this right and if so, what types or brands, etc should I get of each?
 
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bbrock

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You are correct on all counts. For now, stick with the brands offered by Orion. The filters are very good, and the Eye Piece selection is also excellent. <br /><br />I am also galaxy fan. I hate to discourage you, but galaxies will look like fuzzy nebulous spots in the sky. The only way to capture detail is with timed exposure. Even the large, brigth Andromeda Galaxy will look like a fuzzy spot. The best view I ever had of Andromeda is with my 15 x 70 binoculars. <br /><br />The best way around this is to migrate to astrophotography. Some time in the future, consider trying the Orion StarShoot DSI CCD camera. I use the Meade DSI and DSI Pro. Attached is an image of the Galaxy NGC 7331 taken with an exposure of 52 x 15 seconds. I viewed the galaxy through the eye piece, but it was a faint fuzzy spot. <br /><br />Clear Skies<br />Bill
 
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dougum3882

Guest
Thanks for the info. I will definitely get the filter set and the barlow lens. <br /><br />Before I bought the telescope I read some reviews and some mentioned that it was pretty good for viewing galaxies. I figured a low mag lens (something like a 32mm) would help me with viewing galaxies. <br /><br />I took some pictures of saturn with my digital camera but it took me like 10 tries to get 1 decent picture. Below is a link for something I found which I thought might help, but I don't know if it is worth it. Any opinions?<br /><br />http://www.telescope.com/shopping/product/detailmain.jsp?itemID=65&itemType=PRODUCT&iMainCat=3&iSubCat=257&iProductID=65
 
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tfwthom

Guest
As with most things having to do with optics.....there is a ratio between cost and quality. You generally get what you pay for. If you like the view from a $100 Stellarvue 41mm eyepiece go for it....just don't try to compare it to a $495 TeleVue 41mm Panoptic it will not even be close. You will not get the claimed 68 degree FOV think about 50 degree FOV the rest will have coma. TeleVue gives you edge to edge FOV without coma that's what you are paying for. <br /><br />Again that's why I say go to star parties and test drive eyepieces in your scope. I found that I didn't like a 40mm eyepiece in any of my scopes (FS 128, TV 85, or LX 90) the longest focal length I ever go is a 32mm. I have a 40mm someone gave me that I sometimes use for terrestrial but never for astronomy. (17X in the TV 85 is way to low I would rather use binoculars if I'm that low) even they thought it was useless. Come out to Arizona and I'll let you try it.<br /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font size="1" color="#3366ff">www.siriuslookers.org</font> </div>
 
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dougum3882

Guest
Thanks to everyone for the info. I get excited about getting "cool" new accessories for my telescope and if not for this discussion board, I'd spend without thinking or really knowing what I am buying. I actually just got back from Vegas 2 days ago, but plan to go back next year and spend some time at the Grand Canyon while I'm there.
 
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tfwthom

Guest
Think GCSP<br /><br />http://uplink.space.com/showflat.php?Cat=&Board=askastronomer&Number=395452&page=5&view=collapsed&sb=5&o=0&fpart=<br /><br />http://www.tucsonastronomy.org/gcsp.html<br /><br />It's every June....8 nights of dark skies and friendly astronomers from across the country. I'm guessing it will be either the week of June 10th or June 17th in 2007. I will find out by the end of this years but till the NPS makes the dates official with the Tuscon club nothing is set. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font size="1" color="#3366ff">www.siriuslookers.org</font> </div>
 
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drjimbog

Guest
Not sure if this will get to the right folks. Just joined the list today but read your posts last week. Thanks for the advise about the Barlow lens and filters. I already ordered them and they should arrive today. My ex-wife gave me a Dobsonian telescope (SkyQuest xt8) as late a Christmas gift last week. I'm glad that many of you recommend it as a beginner scope. Looks like she did her homework. Haven't really tried it yet as I have to adjust the primary mirror. (The box was a little banged up in transit to Maine but I don't think there was any real damage to the telescope. I hope.) Any words of advice (or caution) about adjusting the mirror? Thanks.<br />
 
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