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Archive for the 'New Products' category

Celestron CGX: a mount close to the limits of perfection

February 27 2017, Stefan Taube

The Celestron brand once again has set the standard for hobby astronomers: The new CGX-mount combines the current technical standard with a well thought out product design – and all for an reasonable price.

CGX-Montierung

Some special features of the CGX-mount:

  • Toothed belt drive and spring pressure mechanism: The belt drive minimises the gear play when changing the direction of movement (“backlash”). The spring pressure mechanism ensures uniform contact pressure between the worm gear and shaft, reducing friction and optimising the operation of the gear – also evident by the reduced noise level.
  • Optical encoders register the position of the mount. The motors can then be stopped before the mechanical slew limit is reached and approach their home position. The mount is able to track objects up to 20° above the meridian.
  • Internal wiring: Only the power supply cable and the cable to the hand control box are exposed. However, the sockets for these exposed cables are arranged in such a way that they do not need to move with the mount.

Der neu konzipierte Antrieb der CGX-Montierung.

  • Large handles: Transport handles ensure easy transport, but all clamping levers are also designed for operation with gloves.
  • Compact design: The saddle plate position near the right ascension axis gives the mount very favourable oscillation characteristics. The declination motor serves as a counterweight.
  • Latest variant of the Nexstar+ control with internal clock to save the last settings and USB-port for simple software update.

Further information on our CGX product page.

Die neue CGX-Montierung mit dem EdgeHD 925 Teleskop.

The CGX-mount is available on its own or as a set with the well-established Schmidt-Cassegrain optics from Celestron. You can find all variants under the link CGX-Telescopes.For ambitious astrophotographers we highly recommend the CGX 925 in its Edge HD version. The most reasonably priced and recommended combination of SC-optics and mount for beginners is the CGX 800.

However, due to the dual Vixen/Losmandy saddle plate you can easily combine almost any other optic from other manufacturers with the CGX-mount.

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Now available: the EQ6-R mount from Skywatcher!

February 20 2017, Stefan Taube

The new EQ6-R Pro SynScan GoTo mount from Skywatcher is now available for ordering. With its price of EUR 1,599 it is just slightly more expensive than its predecessor. We offer you the EQ6-R even cheaper than the price recommended by the manufacturer: You save EUR 100!

The EQ6-R mount is the further development of one of the most popular astronomical mounts. The classic EQ-6is an equatorial mount with computer control (GoTo). It has a high load capacity, but is still portable. And this all for a fair price. No wonder that the EQ6 has really found its way into the heart of the stargazer community.

“Only those who change remain true to themselves.” (Wolf Biermann)

The new EQ6-R does not do everything differently, but many things better:EQ6-R-Pro-SynScan-GoTo

  • Ergonomic design with bigger twist handles for polar elevation setting and a better polar elevation display, convenient handle for transport, mounting saddle for Vixen or Losmandy standard prism rails.
  • Latest version of the SynScan hand controller, permanent PEC correction and camera shutter control.
  • And best of it all: a toothed belt drive! With this new drive system there is no effect known as backlash, i.e. no gear play when changing direction. The mount runs much quieter, with higher torque. All this has a positive effect on autoguiding.

With this new version Skywatcher gives its classic mount a facelift. This way the new EQ6-R will be a standard in hobby astronomy for years to come: the EQ6 just keeps on running…

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Omegon Mini-Guidescope: Small Guidescopes for better astro photos

January 23 2017, Marcus Schenk

Times are changing: Everything is getting smaller. Also in photography! In the past one solely had to handle large and long Guidescopes in astro photography. The assembly of such equipment often was very inconvenient. With the new Omegon Mini Guidescopes tracking is considerably easier.

Finder and Guidescope: The 60 mm Omegon Microspeed Guidescope mounted on a telescope.

“A Guidescope is a telescope, which is mounted parallel on the main instrument. While the camera is mounted to the main telescope, the Guidescope is responsible for accurate tracking.”

Presentation: Guidescope types 50 and 60 from Omegon.

The Omegon Mini-Guidescopes are available with 50 mm and 60 mm diameter. They are only 200 mm and 260 mm long and with 600 and 900 gram they are almost as light as a 2″ eyepiece. What are the benefits when compared with “conventional” Guidescopes?

  • Lighter: Your telescope will not be overloaded. Even smaller telescopes will be suitable for astro photography.
    Simpler: Simply plug the Guidescope into the finder shoe. It is also simple to remove.
    Better focussing: Sensitive focussing with the helical focuser.

For further details please refer to the product pages for the 50 mm and 60 mm Mini-Guidescopes.

Autoguider and Guidescope: Are they an effective team?

This question can be answered with a clear: “Yes”. The Guidescope works optimally with an Autoguider. Why? Most modern Autoguiders have small pixels. This comes with a clear advantage: A shorter focal length of the Guidescope. Touptek Autoguiders, for instance, have such small pixels. Main feature: Due to the new sensor design these cameras are highly sensitive. This enables you to find,the right guide star for any object.

“With the Guidescope and my camera I always find a guide start in the field of view” says Bodo Fischer, astro photographer and user of the Guidescope.

The Guidescope with a Touptek camera

Which camera is suitable for Microspeed Guidescopes? Our recommendation: Touptek “GCMOS01200KPA” cameras. Highly suitable due to the high image rate of 30 images per second, a ST-4 Autoguider port for your mount and an image processing software.

The best combinations:

  1. Microspeed Guidescope 50 mm + ToupTek GCMOS01200KPA Mono Guider
  2. Microspeed Guidescope 60 mm + ToupTek GCMOS01200KPA Mono Guider

Tip: With the camera use a Omegon UV-IR-filter or the Baader Semi APO filter. For even more brilliant stars and even more success in Autoguiding.

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Celestron Astro Fi: beginner telescopes with App

January 16 2017, Stefan Taube

It all started with the NexStar Evolution: Celestron had this telescope series equipped with WIFI. This enables you to connect your tablet or smartphone with the telescope. This not only gives you the opportunity to control your telescope without cables, you can also utilize all functionalities of the free-of-charge App Celestron SkyPortal: Your display screen uses an appealing planetarium view to show the current view of the sky and provides you with a lot of background information. The most popular objects are available as images and even an Auto-Guide (in English).

Celestron now offers this technology also for reasonable starter telescopes. At present this series Astro Fi consists of four different instruments:

Newton telescope N 130/650 AZ GoTo Astro Fi 130

Refractor N 90/910 AZ GoTo Astro Fi 90

Maksutov telescope MC 102/1325 AZ GoTo Astro Fi 102

Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope SC 127/1250 AZ GoTo Astro Fi 5

astro-fi-5

Our tip: The Astro Fi telescope with SC optics.

The model Astro Fi 5 mentioned last is particularly interesting. With its aperture of 5 inches it is already relatively fast. However, the telescope is very compact and thus only has a minor leverage effect on the tripod. The closed tube protects the main mirror against contamination. Moreover, SC optics show a high adjustment stability. Despite their compact design and the high focal length, SC optics are highly suitable for taking photos of moon and planets – a well suited camera is the NexImage 5.

As already described before, all four Astro Fi telescopes generate a WIFI for the control via the SkyPortal App. In contrast to the NexStar Evolution, Celestron delivers the Astro Fi without an additional manual control box.

Just like the bigger Celestron telescopes, the Astro Fi also come with the SkyAlign technology. This is a particularly simple technique for aligning the computer control to the actual night sky and your station. At the beginning of your stargazing session you must align the telescope to three bright celestial objects, that is all. The telescope uses the angles between the objects and the GPS-data from the smartphone or tablet to calculate the actual view of the sky. After this short procedure you can automatically approach any object that the SkyPortal-App shows you. All you must do, just touch the object on the touchscreen.

The special feature of this SkyAlign method is the fact that you even don’t need to know the names of the three bright objects you use for initializing the control. For beginners this is a great help, but it is also a useful feature for experienced stargazers, because at dawn the number of visible stars is often too low to assign the correct names.

The Astro Fi telescopes are equipped with a battery compartment. However, the best power supply method surely is the LiFePO4 powerpack from Celestron.

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Omegon binocular mount: How to surf the sky with binoculars

January 2 2017, Marcus Schenk

It is simply fantastic: viewing the sky with binoculars. Hiking through the constellations of the milky way. Just take a detour to the next nebula. And then back to the Andromeda galaxy.
Exploring the sky with large binoculars is a lot fun. If their wasn’t the problem with the weight.

Das perfekt austarierte Nightstar 20x80 Fernglas

A tripod is a must, otherwise your arms will get heavy, even after just a few minutes. But most large binoculars have a weight of several kilograms and most tripod heads are thus overloaded. In practice: At an inclination of more than 45° most heads will start to slip, because friction becomes too high.

But now there is a solution: The Omegon binocular mount.

It consists of a 580 mm long rail (acc. to Aka-Swiss-Rail standard) and a 1 kg counterweight. Fasten your large binoculars on the opposite side. The mount the whole assembly on your tripod head. And all problems are gone.

Perfect balancing of your binoculars relieves the tripod head and allows any movement.

The forces are balanced
You simply float across the sky by slightly increasing the friction of your tripod head. Simply move the binoculars from one object to the next. And don’t bother with extremely tightened mount clamps. It gives you the impression as if your binoculars would surf the sky on the waves of light.

Some product recommendations for the Omegon binocular fixture:

Binoculars:
Omegon Nightstar 15×70
Omegon Nightstar 20×80
Omegon Argus 11×70
Omegon Argus 20×80

Tripods and tripod heads:
Omegon aluminium tripod Titania 800 + 3D panorama head 500 + Novoflex Swiss-Rail profile
Manfrotto aluminium tripod 475 B Pro Digital
Cullmann tripod panorama head CONCEPT ONE OH4.5V
Manfrotto video pan head MVH500AH Fluid + Novoflex Swiss-Rail profile

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Omegon V-Power: toughened focusers for better astro photos

November 28 2016, Marcus Schenk

Taking astro photos means facing many challenges. One of these are sharp astro photos. It is not easy to focus on weakly glowing stars and nebulae during the night. A perfectly tracked astro photo, but blurred? Inconceivable!

However, the perfect solution for this is now available: the new Omegon V-Power focusers. Making sure that your astro photo does not end up in drama, but as a story with a happy end.

Nur echt mit dem V: Der V-Power High-End-Okularauszug

What makes the V-Power focusers so distinct?

Important parts of the V-Power focuser are made of stainless steel instead of soft aluminium. Robust V2A ball bearings and stainless steel rings ensure high precision focusing. A dual speed 1:10 reduction provides the basis for a sensitively focusedastro photo, and the laser engraving allows you to return to previous settings very quickly. And if you have planned the future use of a motorized control, this is also possible.

With the V-Power finder base you can now also connect your finder scope. Simply attach the base to the focuser – and you are ready to go!

With these sets you can simply connect the focuser to your telescope

The V-Power series is available in different versions: for Newton and Schmidt-Cassegrain telescopes. A plug & play solution is available in a set with matching adapters. Easy focusing in just a few steps.

You want to learn more? Follow this link to the focuser for better astro photos.

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Skywatcher: A new addition to the Star Adventurer family

November 7 2016, Stefan Taube

The Star Adventurer from Skywatcher literally is a handy camera mount. For us, a camera mount is an astronomical mount that tracks the rotation of the sky with a photo camera, not with a telescope. This way you will successfully shoot impressive wide field images of the night sky: entire constellations, the belt of the milky way, or atmospheric constellations of the Moon and planets.

A new addition to the Star Adventurer family

The Mini Star Adventurer Wi-Fi from Skywatcheris now available:

mini-star-adventurer

Just like the classic Star Adventurer we also offer this model in two variations: The Photo-Set only consists of the photo mount without any further accessories. This variation is perfect for customers who already have accessories, or want to use the Star Adventurer for applications other than astro photography. The Astro-Set variation comes with everything you need to be able to use the Star Adventurer as an astronomical mount. You only need an additional camera tripod. An excellent solution is the very light Titania 600 from Omegon.

What has changed on the new Star Adventurer?

The Mini Star Adventurer Wi-Fi is no replacement for the classic model. As indicated by its name, the load capacity of the new version is lower. The classic Star Adventurer is able to carry approx. 5 kilogramme; for the Mini Star Adventurer the manufacturer recommends an additional load of maximum 3 kilogramme. This low load gives you the opportunity to operate the Mini Star Adventurer via an integrated powerpack, which is charged via Mini-USB. You no longer need any batteries.

Another major difference is the control via app: The Mini Star Adventurer Wi-Fi generates its own WIFI network. You can wirelessly connect your smartphone or tablet to the camera mount. For this purpose, Skywatcher provides an app for Android and iOS free of charge. The advantage of this app is the fact that no additional manual control is required because you already own a smartphone, including the convenience of the graphical user interface and touchscreen. You can actually use the app to control your camera via the Mini Star Adventurer Wi-Fi and to make a vast variety of settings. This all takes place without touching: no camera movement, no disturbance of the polar alignment.

By the way: With camera mounts like the models of the Star Adventurer series you will also be able to take panorama and time lapse images. Camera mounts are highly versatile tools for ambitious photographers.

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Winter clothes: The nights are getting cold again!

October 24 2016, Stefan Taube

Fashionable clothing actually is not our core competence, but we know exactly how the temperatures can drop during these autumn nights! This is why our outdoor range offers a selection of cold protection clothing.

The following items have been very well received:Planam

You can even get your hot tea from a Thermos flask from us! Just add the hot tea.

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Celestron Inspire: New ideas for starter telescopes!

October 17 2016, Stefan Taube

My first telescope was a small, 60 millimetre refractor on a very wobbly azimuthal mount with a wooden tripod. Even though it was only a very simple piece of equipment, I had fun with it right from the beginning. I can still remember the fascination when looking at the Orion nebula for the first time. Even today I gladly use this simple achromatic telescope to watch sunspots – obviously through a solar filter!

However, such reasonable starter telescopes do not have to be wobbly! Telescope manufacturer Celestron shows that even budget-priced refractors on azimuthal mounts can feature exquisite product design. The new Inspire series features a few really innovative improvements.

Inspire

This starts with a solid steel tripod. The accessory plate, which also stabilizes the tripod, no longer needs to be unscrewed after a star gazing session (the screw required for this purpose will sooner or later be lost in the grass anyway). Just simply open the interlock instead and fold down the tripod including the accessory plate. It has never been more convenient to set up or disassemble a tripod!

Apart from this, the clamping screws for the extendable tripod legs point inwards to make sure that you will not accidentally get entangled with your trousers.

Stativ InspireFurther features of the Inspire series:

  • The newly developed red dot finder comes with target circles instead of an annoying centre mark.
  • The Amici prism ensures an upright image, so that daytime nature observations are also possible.
  • The focusing screws of the focuser are big and have a good grip to allow the use of gloves.
  • The dust protection lid for the eyepiece also serves as a smartphone adapter. All eyepieces included in the scope of delivery can be clamped into this lid, just like the smartphone. This allows you to use your smartphone to take magnified photos of the Moon and planets through the eyepieces.
  • The mount is equipped with an integrated red light lamp. The diffuse light of this lamp illuminates the accessories plate without dazzling the eyes. However, you can easily pull the lamp out of the mount to use it as a pocket torch.

Currently, Celestron offers three models of the Inspire series

Each of these three models is far better than my first telescope, but I still had a lot of fun with it!

 

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Omegon apochromatic telescope 102 mm and 127 mm Triplet: The “People’s Apo” has been improved

October 10 2016, Marcus Schenk

Whoever looks through an apo for the first time is usually thrilled. Twin stars, star clusters or planets: for these objects, an apo – without any doubt – takes the pole position. The two best-sellers from Omegon are the 102 mm and the 127mm Triplet apos – part of our product range since 2010! Now they have been revised and considerably improved. And best of all: The price has not been changed.

Just learn what has been changed to make this equipment more impressive than ever for amateur astronomers:

1. Adjustable lens cell

In the past telescopes were obviously adjusted, but any re-adjustment was very difficult. At least, you really needed to know what you were doing. This has now changed! We have developed a completely new and temperature compensating lens cell, which makes adjusting as simple as riding a bike – okay, maybe almost as simple. Four adjustment and fixing screws help you to adjust the eyepiece. This is easily done with an open end spanner, using the North Star as a reference.

triplet-blog

2. Finder base

The finder base with double-T profile was swapped for a standard Vixen-style base. You can now mount almost any finderscope or LED finder. This gives you more freedom of choice, because in the past only a few models fitted correctly.

3. Suitable for binocular attachments

Not everybody uses them, even though they really elicit a WOW-effect during observation. Binoculars allow you to watch with two eyes and give you plastic impressions. They are particularly fantastic for watching the Moon and planets. For problem-free use of a binocular the tube has been slightly shortened to provide more focusing space for the connection. Now you can use a binocular with diagonal mirror.

4. Reinforced prism rail

During the constant assembly and disassembly of a telescope, the prism rail suffers a lot. The screws of the mount repeatedly dig into the soft aluminium and leave scratches and sometimes even deep notches. We have now reinforced the prism rail of your apo with a stainless steel plate, so that it can still be used for many years to come. Scratches and deep notches are a thing of the past.

5. Retractable dew-shield

The dew-shield is now extendable and retractable and no longer attached.

By the way: Each apo now comes with a measurement protocol as a standard. Furthermore, we check the adjustment of each telescope and include a test image of the adjustment. But did you know, that, on request, we will also check your telescope on our optical bench? From the star test in autocollimation up to the interferometric test.

 

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28.03.2017
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