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Old 27-12-2016, 10:48 AM
PeteG (Peter)
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NEQ5pro vs CGEM

I'm sure this has come up before.
I've exhausted the capabilities of my Celestron Nexstar 6SE as far as imaging goes, and I can get the occasional good 40s exposure (it takes about 20 images to get a good one).
I'm saving my pennies for an EQ mount next year, and I was hoping to get peoples opinions between the NEQ5pro and CGEM. Both are the same price roughly. I have a soft spot for Celestron gear, and I know 2 people with NEQs and they both had motherboard failures.

Any suggestions or experiences with either?
I'm hoping to do better imaging with just the mount for starters (guiding will have to wait). Will I be able to get maybe 1min exposures reliably with just the mount? And I being optimistic?
Advice would be appreciated. Please don't recommend anything else. I can't afford it. Thanks.
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Old 27-12-2016, 12:29 PM
glend (Glen)
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There is a sale on Celestron mounts at Bintel right now. Also be aware the CGEM DX is being run out and US retailers are selling them substantially reduced.
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Old 28-12-2016, 10:02 AM
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ChrisV (Chris)
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+1. I got the CGEM from Bintel a few days ago, lovin it.
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Old 28-12-2016, 10:57 AM
PeteG (Peter)
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So can anyone tell me what duration images I can expect, without guiding?
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Old 28-12-2016, 12:16 PM
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Camelopardalis (Dunk)
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Not really

It'll depend on how good your polar alignment is, how accurately the mount tracks, how bad the periodic error is...you won't know that until you try it. Each individual mount is different. And a C6 with focal length of 1500mm is pretty demanding, even for an experienced imager (since the focal length essentially magnifies any tracking errors).

Contrary to popular belief, there is no perfect mount, at any price...folk pay more for better engineering, but if you ask any of the master imagers in here they're all guiding, regardless of how expensive their mount is.

Guiding is always something you can jump into later...
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Old 03-01-2017, 12:30 PM
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sil (Steve)
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Unguided limit depends on two factors, polar alignment and balance for the direction you're imaging. When I got my CGEM DX years ago a firmware update improved tracking accuracy. I already explained elsewhere on this forum how I got 99.9% perfect polar alignment I could set up each time reliably. But disengaging clutches and manually positioning to your imaging target and balancing the setup at that point always gave me reliably round stars at 30sec exposures. To be honest I never went above that duration and these days due to health cant use it. Initial star alignment would rarely put target stars anywhere in frame but my target where I balanced would always be dead center in my shots. In hindsight it was more gear than my knowledge and skills could make the most of at the time, if anything I let it down. Never had purchase regret, the CGEM DX is built as solid as an anvil. From memory the CGEM uses the same mount but a lighter tripod, which I'd be concerned about vibrations with. No real reason I chose it, I just wanted the scope bundle and was in a hurry to buy at the time.
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