Below I will attach a few pictures of my current\past equipment and then briefly talk about the equipment. I do a ton of testing in the field so I'm always swapping equipment out for different reasons.

    Pictured above and below, you will see what I'm currently working with. This is an Esprit 150 with and Esprit 80 on its back. Both scopes have matching Trius SX694 CCD cameras and mini filter wheels. The mount is a Paramount MX+ and the setup is situated high in a remote observatory with the darkest skies Texas has to offer. After designing and hand assembling the DS87 computer, the observatory owner helped network everything properly. If guiding is needed, an off axis guide setup has been deployed to the main imaging scope using a Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2.


    In the photos above, you see a setup that I used to perform a comparison of these two great optical instruments. First, we have an AP1200 CP2 mounted to a 48" AP portable pier. Mounted to the side by side saddle configuration is an AP160 EDF Starfire. A superb instrument that really needs no introduction. If you are familiar with AP, then you know exactly what this is. The optional F7.7 field flattener is attached along with the Canon EOS flange adapter for it. A Canon 60Da completes the AP 160 train. On the other side, we have a Sky-Watcher Esprit 150mm F7.5. The included field flattener is attached with a spacer for additional backfocus requirements. An identical Canon 60Da model camera wraps up the train on this scope. For guiding, we went with my first astro imaging scope ever purchased. An Astro-Tech AT65EDQ quad refractor and Orion SSAG mini Autoguider.

    This is my old imaging setup. However, I still use the Esprit 100 in the photo very regularly. The two scopes are only stacked this way for testing purposes. This is not its normal configuration. The Takahashi EM200 Temma2M is a superb mount. It handles a medium weight payload very well and will track with the movement of the earth very precisely. The best part about this mount is that there is no fighting the polar alignment. This thing is polar aligned in 10 minutes (much faster if my brain has had sugar). The white scope is a Sky-Watcher Esprit 100mm F5.5 APO triplet w/ supplied field flattener. For its price point, this scope is very well made and takes excellent photos. See my gallery for some images taken with this scope. The camera attached to it is my Canon T3i DSLR w/ Gary Honis Full Spectrum Modification. Hidden in between the two scopes is the Orion Magnificient Mini Autoguider. There are mixed opinions on this setup but I have not had any issues with it. It guides just fine for me and tracks the sky very well. If I ever need to guide through one of my refractors, I have a QHY5II ccd chip with a custom t-thread adapter. The carbon fiber scope is the big brother to my SVR90T. It's a Stellarvue SVR105T APO triplet. The camera attached to that scope is my first camera and the one I learned on. A Canon Rebel XS 1000D with a Full Spectrum Modification.

    Pictured on the right is a Takahashi NJP with my Astro Tech AT65EDQ lens. If you visit my gallery, you will see an image of M31 and M33 taken on the night this photo was made. You might be wondering why the larger setup is attached to amount that advertises a lighter payload capacity. First, the EM200 will handle more than you might think. It carried this setup very well. Two, this was literally my rookie year and only my second time using the NJP. Learning the mechanics of the mount were still a work in progress so we stuck with what we were familiar with.



© 2017 Astrophotography by Jerry Gardner