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  #41  
Old 22-11-2023, 08:06 AM
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The_bluester (Paul)
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I was also at VicSouth, I did not see it in operation at night but it was interesting to watch in solar mode, with a proper solar filter (I believe the addition of that might have been one cause of shipping delay) and a "No alignment" solar mode where it simply panned and tilted around until it found the sun, producing about as good a natural colour image as you could ask for.
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  #42  
Old 23-11-2023, 05:00 PM
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chrisp9au (Chris)
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I am stunned!

Ordered my ZWO Seestar S50 from Testar in Sydney on 17/11.

Advised today 23/11, by Australia Post that it is on it's way!

Good on you Testar! Note, they still have a couple in stock!

Happy Christmas!
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  #43  
Old 25-11-2023, 01:53 AM
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Chris I had put an advise stock alert on Testar earlier this week. Got a sms on Thursday 23rd put the order in and it shipped Friday 24th. I called them to confirm and they said they just had a small batch come in and lucky few who had orders got them. So glad I followed this thread and put a stock alert with Testar. It’s bit more expensive than direct but given wait times worth it.
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  #44  
Old 19-01-2024, 10:36 PM
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Its not the best for serious Astrophotography.
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  #45  
Old 20-01-2024, 11:16 AM
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floyd_2 (Dean)
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I ended up buying one for EAA. There have been too many nights previously where I have set up, cooled down, run cables, focussed, polar aligned, framed and then the clouds have rolled in for the evening. When I'm suspicious of a poor night, I plonk the Seestar down about an hour before it gets dark, go about my business, and turn it on after dark. If the clouds roll in, I've lost about 2 minutes.

I guess you have to use it within its capabilities and not expect the results that you might otherwise get from a decent setup. You can't avoid field rotation, it's a small uncooled camera and small objective. That being said though, it's a pretty capable unit for what its worth. Setup is a breeze, you can post process should you prefer to, and it's good to sit inside with those who would never venture out to the obsie and share the night's viewing. It's definitely easy to throw into the car if I'm going anywhere. My other rigs don't travel.

I guess it's horses for courses, but I'm really happy with it. It's just a matter of having the right expectation of what it can do. There are plenty of targets that it's capable of reaching with good results. I doubt that I'll be hanging a photo from the Seestar on my wall, but that's not why I bought it.

I've post processed a few objects in Siril (my post processing skills are poor) and the shots definitely come up better than without. Being colourblind doesn't help lol but I know others here face the same issue. The shots look ok to me, and then my wife will say, "Is that meant to be orange?" lol I've included a couple of lightly post processed shots just to show what it can bring out of B6 skies with about 2 minutes effort in Siril. Framing could be better but I'll get there. Sorry to everyone here who is a skilled astrophotographer - you may want to look away at this point lol.

The Rosette was shot a first quarter (that's my excuse). The Horsehead wasn't, so I'm still coming up with an excuse there - especially for the massive blowout on Alnitak and dodgy framing Anyway, I guess it gives an idea of what you could reasonably expect from the unit if your post processing skills are below average and you don't have dark skies. Rosette was a 30 minute stack, Horsehead was only 12 minutes and had quite a bit more noise to deal with as a result. Rosette was stacked in Siril, and Horsehead was stacked in the Seastar and the final stack tidied up in Siril. Having noted that, the in-camera real time stacks were decent too, and certainly fine for a night of EAA.
Attached Thumbnails
Click for full-size image (NGC2238 The Rosette Nebula.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (IC434 The Horsehead Nebula.jpg)
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  #46  
Old 20-01-2024, 11:52 AM
JA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by floyd_2 View Post
Rosette was a 30 minute stack, Horsehead was only 12 minutes and had quite a bit more noise to deal with as a result. Rosette was stacked in Siril, and Horsehead was stacked in the Seastar and the final stack tidied up in Siril. Having noted that, the in-camera real time stacks were decent too, and certainly fine for a night of EAA.
HATs OFF Dean -given the quality of the images with a Bortle 6 sky, 50mm aperture, 250mm focal length, 2 megapixel ~6mm diagonal sensor and quick setup- there's no other possible conclusion except, EXCELLENT

Just imagine a Bortle 1 or 2 version!

Best
JA

P.S: they only missed one thing with this unit: a filter thread mount at the front optic to allow the use of auxiliary lenses. It would also need some firmware mods to ensure it doesn't try to park itself into the closed position with the front optic mounted. perhaps there's already such a setting in the user configuration.

Last edited by JA; 20-01-2024 at 12:57 PM.
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  #47  
Old 20-01-2024, 12:56 PM
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floyd_2 (Dean)
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Thanks very much - really nice of you. The Seestar definitely exceeded my expectations. I've only been to the SPSP once in my life and the skies there were just amazing. I'd love to get back under dark skies again and cut it loose.

There are a lot of 3rd party addons for 2" filters, light shrouds etc on the Seestar. I've ordered a set in from the UK that I'm keen to try. This set allows you to use both the light shroud and a 2" filter concurrently. No doubt there'll be a small loss in aperture but I'll just have to see how it goes.

There's a setting in the Seestar to stop it from powering off when not in use, but I'm still suspicious that it'll power off if it manages to get to 15% battery regardless. For an all-nighter (probably zero possibility for me) you'd have to hook up to a phone charger / external battery to be sure.
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  #48  
Old 25-01-2024, 01:51 PM
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dugnsuz (Doug)
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Enjoying mine, looking forward to travelling with it.
Attached Thumbnails
Click for full-size image (NGC1097.jpeg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC2020.jpeg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC346.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC1934.jpeg)
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Click for full-size image (IMG_4735.jpeg)
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  #49  
Old 25-01-2024, 04:54 PM
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floyd_2 (Dean)
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Great shots Doug. It's a fun little scope isn't it? My Seestar lens cap, 2" filter holder, flocked dew shield, bahtinov mask etc kit arrived from Oak Astro in the UK. It came within about a week which was pretty good.

The filter holder is threaded for 2" filters. I didn't trust using threaded plastic for any length of time so I added a spare 3mm M48 spacer to it permanently so my filters have a decent metal thread to screw into. Hopefully the slight drop in aperture isn't going to be noticeable.

The Oak Astro kit is quite a well considered setup as it allows you to optionally use a filter, light / dew shield and bahtinov mask concurrently rather than one at a time. I'm not sure about the mask as the auto focus mostly seems to be spot on for me. I guess I'll be able to see if it's REALLY spot on now

It's been cloudy since this little kit arrived, so I'm keen to finally see how I go being able to block off-axis light. I'm also keen to give my Antlia Triband filter a go under my B6 skies to see if it makes a worthwhile difference.

I've already disabled the Auto-Power Off function in Advanced Settings on the Seestar to make sure that it never self-destructs by powering off with an attachment on the front.
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  #50  
Old 26-01-2024, 08:34 AM
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dugnsuz (Doug)
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Cheers Dean - seen loads of 3rd party 3D printed stuff on ETSY and EBay - will check out the Oaks accessories you mentioned.

Id be very interested to hear about your experiences putting that Tri-Band filter into the mix

Cheers
Doug
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  #51  
Old 02-02-2024, 01:28 PM
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floyd_2 (Dean)
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Hi Doug,
my first clear night since my previous post was last night. It's all about patience these days isn't it? I used the triband filter with the Oak Astro attachment and hood last night on IC434 to compare to the internal filter in the Seestar. The moon was threatening to rise but didn't pop up during this stack.

It's not really like-for-like but I guess it's close enough. This one is the stack straight out of the Seestar with NoiseXterminator and darkened up a bit in Photoshop. It was about 30 seconds of post processing and not stacked externally in Siril etc. I'll do that over the weekend probably. It had about 30 minutes of acquisition according to the Seestar.

Interestingly, the stars don't look to be as blown out as my original post. I'm not sure if the colour is better or worse as I'm colourblind but the results seem good for what it is. I'm not sure that the results are THAT different from the original to warrant the Oak Astro kit to use my Triband. It's hard to say. Also, I didn't notice any vignetting to speak of, which was a surprise. See what you think anyway.

I'll need to give it a go on other objects to be sure. I'm thinking the Triband is going to help me with galaxies / clusters etc in my B6 skies.

Dean
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  #52  
Old 02-02-2024, 08:48 PM
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dugnsuz (Doug)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by floyd_2 View Post
I used the triband filter with the Oak Astro attachment and hood last night on IC434 to compare to the internal filter in the Seestar...
See what you think anyway.

Dean

Thanks for posting Dean - looks like a little detail is lost in the filter image compared with the internal Seestar filters as evidenced in the nebulosity around the star under the HH.


Early days playing with this scope for all of us and it'll be fun experimenting to extract the most from it.


I've attached my latest starless Tarantula - 1hr exposure, just the single 404k image played around with in PI/PS



Cheers
Doug
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  #53  
Old 02-02-2024, 09:42 PM
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Great tarantula field mate. When you consider the cost of the Seestar vs the glass, the camera, internal computer, included filter etc - it gets decent results for what it is. There's certainly extra detail that can be teased out of the shots too. As an EAA scope it's great. No doubt there will be more improvements made by ZWO as time goes on. I'm hoping for a mosaic feature to battle field rotation. The downside of that will be longer integration times so it'll be a slower process, but hopefully the results will be worth it. No easy thing to implement though when you consider trying to remove / match panel gradients etc during stitching.

IMO it gives pretty decent results from the internal stack too. It'll never compete with the big rigs but it's not meant to either. As far as bang for buck goes though, it's great. It complements my bigger setup well.

Keep sharing your pics - I love to see what people are doing with the Seestar!
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  #54  
Old 05-02-2024, 07:21 AM
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wavelandscott (Scott)
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After too many weeks of cloud, work and a too busy life, I was able to give my SeeStar a whirl…as is right out of the device. I am pretty happy…the PHD (Push Here Dummy) ease of use of the device and “success” in my first session gives me some confidence to try it under the night sky.
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  #55  
Old 22-02-2024, 10:03 PM
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goober (Doug)
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I haven’t posted here in about five years, but I did treat myself to a SeeStar as a retirement gift to myself. Ordered yesterday, arrived today, and wow … just so much fun. Just plonked it on my Gibraltar and spun it up.

Despite the fires west of Melbourne and the filthy weather today, I took it out tonight and imaged 47 Tuc for two minutes and I’m just thrilled.

I’m hoping the clouds will clear and I’ll try it on a few targets in Centaurus / Crux later this evening.
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  #56  
Old 23-02-2024, 10:07 PM
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Enjoying my new toy immensely- great fun and very easy to jump from object to object using the sky atlas. Its helping me to find objects to image with my big rig that I might have never considered.

Attached an image of (old fave) the Rosette nebula I took with the Seestar recently- pushed the subs a bit 522x10secs
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Click for full-size image (Rosette.jpg)
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  #57  
Old 24-02-2024, 08:03 AM
Chetankumar (Chetan)
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See star

Was thinking to buy one in Australia,
How much is the price and performance.
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  #58  
Old 24-02-2024, 03:51 PM
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goober (Doug)
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Finally some clear skies and free time so I tested it on the Sun, and about two minutes last Thursday (arrival day) on 47 Tuc. Ill try and target a few things later tonight as the sky appears to be finally clearing.
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Click for full-size image (IMG_1411.jpeg)
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  #59  
Old 26-02-2024, 06:48 PM
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Doug (dugnsuz), that's a seriously impressive shot. Dean, too, has some terrific photos. Oooh, I'm starting to think there may be a purchase in my immediate future. Thanks for sharing these.
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  #60  
Old 26-02-2024, 08:32 PM
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Hi Patrick,
for the price you can't really go wrong. It'll never come close to the rigs that the guys here use to take (and process) their amazing shots with. However, that's not really what it's about anyway. When you think that you can grab a Vaonis Vespera II for 3-4x the price for what really is still a limited alt/az setup, it's cheap. Then, when you consider what Celestron has come out with for $6k or more and it's STILL limited it makes the Seestar even more of a bargain by comparison. Here's some other shots that I've taken with the Seestar. I'm a bit of a chicken putting my shots up here because I know that they can't possibly ever compare to the amazingly detailed shots that I drool over from the other guys here . Still, for what it's worth, here's some more examples of what you could get out of your Seestar when you buy it
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Click for full-size image (C77.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC 3324 Gabriela Mistral and NGC3293 Little Jewel Box v2.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC 3532 Wishing Well.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC 3576 v2.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC2516.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC5139 Final.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (The Jewel Box.jpg)
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Click for full-size image (NGC104 Final.jpg)
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