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The telescope with a guide scope mounted

60mm Starwave Guide Scope Package for Autoguiding

|Equipment|4 Comments

My friends over at Ontario Telescope & Accessories have sent me a new Altair GPCAM2 AR0130 Mono autoguiding camera and 60mm Starwave guide scope to use with my astrophotography setup.  In this post, I'll give you an early look at this practical autoguiding solution for deep sky astrophotography. If you are looking to implement an autoguiding package to your imaging rig, the Starwave 60mm Autoguiding Package is an excellent option.  I have used this guide scope and camera on a number of deep sky astrophotography projects, including the Soul Nebula (Image Below). Having the ability…

Bahtinov mask

Better Focus using a Bahtinov Mask

|Equipment|5 Comments

Focusing stars through your telescope Achieving a sharp focus is an essential step of any deep-sky imaging session.  With so much time and effort put into your polar alignment and autoguiding accuracy, it would be a shame to spoil a photo due to poor focus. A Bahtinov mask is a tool designed to help you focus your telescope. In general, the smaller the stars are in your image, the better. One of the reasons I love my Explore Scientific ED 102 Refractor so much is its ability to capture pinpoint stars. However, this characteristic is only present in my images when my focus is spot-on.…

Deep-Sky Astrophotography During a Full Moon

|The Moon|11 Comments

The clouds have parted, and I have enjoyed 2 cold, clear nights of astrophotography back-to-back! This is a fortunate occurrence that doesn’t come very often, especially during a Canadian winter. However, the moon is nearly full, rising in the late evening in it’s waning gibbous phase. This reminds me of a question that comes up time and time again. Is deep-sky astrophotography during a full moon a waste of time? The moon reflects bright sunlight into the sky for about a week on either side of a full moon.  This moonlight floods the sky and is so bright that it washes out faint deep-sk…