Author Topic: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging  (Read 547 times)

obenanus

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Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« on: December 29, 2017, 02:08:07 AM »
I would like to get a general consensus on the utilization of the Celestron C11, mounted on an Ioptron EQ45 Pro/42" pier combination for <5 minute astro imaging.

Would there be any problems with the setup? The Celestron C11 weighs in at 27.5 lbs and the weight limit of the EQ45 is, 45 lbs and 90 lbs for Dual Alt Az mountings!

I am trying to be budget minded, and not trying to buy something too expensive for a mount, but the Celestron alternative CGEM II does not come with the dark illuminated polar alignment scope as a standard accessory. Although the CGEM II is $1500 and the EQ45 Pro w/ 42" pier is $1938, $438 more expensive. The Ioptron hand controller is heated for colder months and has a database of over 358,00 objects compared to the Celestron 40,000 object database. Even their controller is not heated as well.

The Ioptron EQ45 Pro Dual EQ/Alt Az is just $1948.

I think it would be a great buy in my opinion and given the option for either EQ mode or Alt Az mode, carrying a C11 on either side, or maybe something bigger like a C14 on either side...LOL (C14 is 45 lbs for the OTA) or perhaps a C11 on on side and a C14 on the other, the possibilities are endless!



Pablo Abreu

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2017, 07:31:15 PM »
The weight limits for average mounts are usually for visual use. My CGEM did fine (imaging) with my 8" EdgeHD, but I wouldn't have tried imaging on it with my 11". In fact, I didn't get the 11" until I upgraded to a larger mount, though I have used my 11" on the CGEM visually since. I think for imaging with the 11" you would need something like the CEM60 at least. Though, I haven't seen many actually transition to an 11" with the CEM60, though they talk about it.  I think the EQ45 (as well as the CGEM and Atlas mounts) will handle an 8" ok for imaging. Also, the OTA weights you are quoting are bare and do not even include a dovetail. My 11" is close to 45 pounds after you add all the equipment. The camera, focal reducer and focuser alone is 9 pounds.

incojukam

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2017, 06:02:01 PM »
I'd say you'd be pushing it. Put your money in your mount. And, even with a heated hand controller, you'll still be wearing gloves.

swittetsakee

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2018, 09:49:00 PM »
The answer really does depend on i) what you mean by "< 5 minute astro imaging", and ii) what focal length you are going to operate at. If you are doing really, really short subs, say 15-30secs at <600-700mm focal length say , with a low read noise camera, then you can get away with a less robust mount. Lots of guys in EAA are doing this. But, man, if you are going to try a C11 at just f/5, ie.1400mm focal, and hope to do a few minutes single sub exposures, I would save up for a beefier mount, and decent guiding will make life easier with a C11.

As for the EQ45, the 90lb payload is only for use in Alt-Az mode, and I would guess that is a visual, not-imaging max load. If you are trying to do several minute subs in Alt-Az mode, field rotation will ruin them. If you are doing really short subs (as mentioned above), you are okay, but equatorial mode may give you better results.

As for total payload, for non-premium mounts, like the CGEM and EQ45, I would use the 50% payload rule for imaging, i.e. max imaging payload = 50% of visual max payload. If you step up to a premium mount, then the payload are generally imaging payloads.

For more guidance, maybe tell us exactly what you mean by <5minute astro imaging.

Mortimer Concepcion

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2018, 01:01:47 AM »
Quote
The weight limits for average mounts are usually for visual use. My CGEM did fine (imaging) with my 8" EdgeHD, but I wouldn't have tried imaging on it with my 11". In fact, I didn't get the 11" until I upgraded to a larger mount, though I have used my 11" on the CGEM visually since. I think for imaging with the 11" you would need something like the CEM60 at least. Though, I haven't seen many actually transition to an 11" with the CEM60, though they talk about it.  I think the EQ45 (as well as the CGEM and Atlas mounts) will handle an 8" ok for imaging. Also, the OTA weights you are quoting are bare and do not even include a dovetail. My 11" is close to 45 pounds after you add all the equipment. The camera, focal reducer and focuser alone is 9 pounds.

I would be using a very light weight Rigel Quik Finder instead of an 8x50. My camera only weighs maybe 4 ounces, and the heaviest part would the filter wheel at just about 1 lb. I wouldn't be adding nearly as much as you do. I think i would be topping out at 30 lbs at most.

wetrerede

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2018, 04:15:29 AM »
Quote
The answer really does depend on i) what you mean by "< 5 minute astro imaging", and ii) what focal length you are going to operate at. If you are doing really, really short subs, say 15-30secs at <600-700mm focal length say , with a low read noise camera, then you can get away with a less robust mount. Lots of guys in EAA are doing this. But, man, if you are going to try a C11 at just f/5, ie.1400mm focal, and hope to do a few minutes single sub exposures, I would save up for a beefier mount, and decent guiding will make life easier with a C11.

As for the EQ45, the 90lb payload is only for use in Alt-Az mode, and I would guess that is a visual, not-imaging max load. If you are trying to do several minute subs in Alt-Az mode, field rotation will ruin them. If you are doing really short subs (as mentioned above), you are okay, but equatorial mode may give you better results.

As for total payload, for non-premium mounts, like the CGEM and EQ45, I would use the 50% payload rule for imaging, i.e. max imaging payload = 50% of visual max payload. If you step up to a premium mount, then the payload are generally imaging payloads.

For more guidance, maybe tell us exactly what you mean by <5minute astro imaging.


I was wondering what the imaging payload formula was. However, with the EQ45 in Alt Az mode with a C11 on one side and the C8 on the other, I think it would be fine for short 15-30 second subs for live stacking. I have been successful doing subs on my Nexstar 8SE scope and mount and get pretty good results. Actually, I should say that I was getting pretty good results with my Nexstar 6SE scope and mount before I traded up to a Nexstar 8SE. I also use my ZEQ25 mount for my Nexstar 8SE OTA and max out the payload at about 15-16 lbs for imaging and I get really good results in that configuration. The tracking is spot on in most cases. I do not do autoguiding. I just sit there and adjust the image in real time depending on where the object drifts, but I usually never have to move the mount, the tracking is that good. So using the EQ45 in Alt Az mode for taking subs will not be a problem. And if it does become a problem, then I can always put the EQ45 into EQ mode and still get good results. I was hoping to get the Vixen VMC 260L Cass OTA for that mount. It weighs in at 20lbs soaking wet, although its cost is $3500, but coming from a Japanese optical company, I am sure the optical quality is top notch.

Jaimeylos Chiessa

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2018, 09:01:35 AM »
Hmmm no, I would NOT do that. Remember that for imaging you usually load the mount at half to 2/3 the rate of the mount. Just the focal reducer for the Edge 11" is huge and heavy, trust me it adds up quickly and later if you have any nice ideas, want to upgrade the camera, put a Moonlite focuser then you have to invest in a whole new mount. Spend the money on the mount now, the best you can afford and you won't regret in the future. Here's mine, fully loaded but the FW, OAG and camera are pretty light and it is right there around the 45lb limit of my mount.Attached Thumbnails


Paul Nyuon

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2018, 09:38:39 AM »
It depends on your expectations. If by "less than 5-minutes," you mean, "a minute or so max"...you'd be OK.

I have the similar (payload-wise for IMAGING) CGEM, and while I've had pretty good results by keeping exposures short, my sense is that the C11 is a bit much for the mount. It is certainly fine for visual, but even then, yeah, I sometimes think "a bit much."

Dave Matthews

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2018, 10:19:48 PM »
Quote
Hmmm no, I would NOT do that. Remember that for imaging you usually load the mount at half to 2/3 the rate of the mount. Just the focal reducer for the Edge 11" is huge and heavy, trust me it adds up quickly and later if you have any nice ideas, want to upgrade the camera, put a Moonlite focuser then you have to invest in a whole new mount. Spend the money on the mount now, the best you can afford and you won't regret in the future. Here's mine, fully loaded but the FW, OAG and camera are pretty light and it is right there around the 45lb limit of my mount.

What mount do you have? What is it's imaging payload limit versus it actual payload limit? Trust me, the only camera I use are the ZWO cameras and the Celestron Neximage 10 and they weigh only 4 ounces tops. I have a manual filter wheel, probably upgrading to a ZWO electronic filter wheel that weighs about 1 lb. I have no intentions of buying a Moonlite focuser, been there, done that. I am not impressed with their designs, although the focuser anodizing looks nice!

I typically do EAA imaging, taking screen captures of DSO's and processing them later or taking AVI's of the planets and processing them later on too. I do not like all the wires hanging about on the scope, not to mention all the unneeded extra weight. I use a 0.5 FR on my Nexstar 8 OTA and that barely clocks in at an ounce or so. I am weight conscious and always take into consideration what I can load onto my scope and mount, taking into consideration the payload limits.

noerivatat

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2018, 12:13:08 AM »
Quote
Quote

Hmmm no, I would NOT do that. Remember that for imaging you usually load the mount at half to 2/3 the rate of the mount. Just the focal reducer for the Edge 11" is huge and heavy, trust me it adds up quickly and later if you have any nice ideas, want to upgrade the camera, put a Moonlite focuser then you have to invest in a whole new mount. Spend the money on the mount now, the best you can afford and you won't regret in the future. Here's mine, fully loaded but the FW, OAG and camera are pretty light and it is right there around the 45lb limit of my mount.

What mount do you have? What is it's imaging payload limit versus it actual payload limit? Trust me, the only camera I use are the ZWO cameras and the Celestron Neximage 10 and they weigh only 4 ounces tops. I have a manual filter wheel, probably upgrading to a ZWO electronic filter wheel that weighs about 1 lb. I have no intentions of buying a Moonlite focuser, been there, done that. I am not impressed with their designs, although the focuser anodizing looks nice!

I typically do EAA imaging, taking screen captures of DSO's and processing them later or taking AVI's of the planets and processing them later on too. I do not like all the wires hanging about on the scope, not to mention all the unneeded extra weight. I use a 0.5 FR on my Nexstar 8 OTA and that barely clocks in at an ounce or so. I am weight conscious and always take into consideration what I can load onto my scope and mount, taking into consideration the payload limits.
If you just do EAA imaging, that's practically visual then I'd say you should be fine with the iEQ45. But if you ever change your mind and decide to do something else I'd suggest at least the CEM60.

I also apologize because I thought you said Edge 11", the focal reducer on that one is definitely not an ounce or so.

Eric Shaffer

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2018, 04:30:27 PM »
Quote
It depends on your expectations. If by "less than 5-minutes," you mean, "a minute or so max"...you'd be OK.

I have the similar (payload-wise for IMAGING) CGEM, and while I've had pretty good results by keeping exposures short, my sense is that the C11 is a bit much for the mount. It is certainly fine for visual, but even then, yeah, I sometimes think "a bit much."

Taking into consideration LadyHawke's explanation of weight limits rule of 1/2 to 2/3 of the actual payload limit, I would think that even the Meade 10 inch ACF OTA which weighs in at 26lbs, plus a few more pounds for added accessories for imaging, it would work on the EQ45 in EQ mode and definitely work at the Alt Az mode for imaging purposes.

If I go by the half rule, then 45/2 is 22.5 lbs. If I go by the 2/3 rule, then 45/3 equals 14.85 x 2 equals 29.7 lbs. So with that in mind, I should be able to carry the Meade 10 inch OTA, weighing 26 lbs, with 3 lbs for camera accessories, with no problems on the EQ45 in EQ mode. I would have to experiment with the EQ45 in Alt Az mode for imaging with that configuration using the 1/2 to 2/3 rule for payload weights. In Alt Az mode with the EQ45, payload limit of 55 lbs in that configuration, 1/2 weight is 27.5 lbs (equal; to a C11 OTA) or 36.3 lbs for the 2/3 rule. A 10" F/8 imaging RC from Astronomics would work too, weighing in at 34 lbs for the OTA. But I am not into full frame imaging. My camera's are typically 1/3" chips, so I do not need large format telescopes. The Meade 10 ACF would be perfect for me on the EQ45 mount.

cicacating

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2018, 05:53:44 PM »
Ladyhawke, you had the CEM60. What did you think of the mount for imaging purposes?

housletica

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2018, 07:44:50 AM »
Quote
Ladyhawke, you had the CEM60. What did you think of the mount for imaging purposes?

Loved it, LOVED my CEM60 but back then I did not have the Edge 11", so the most I put on that mount was an Edge 8".

Zac Purvis

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #13 on: January 20, 2018, 08:06:17 PM »
I own the iEQ45Pro and I wouldn't recommend it for the C11. While the scope itself is within the weight limit for AP on that mount, you aren't just mounting the scope. You'll be adding a focal reducer, OAG, Camera, Guide camera, cables, mounting hardware, maybe a USB hub, etc. You'll easily be at 40 pounds or more. Plus, the long focal length of that scope will be a real challenge for this mount.

I use mine with an EdgeHD 800 SCT, and a 0.7x focal reducer, so I'm using it at 1400mm focal length. I have a side by side setup with a 72mm refractor beside it, on an ADM minimax for aiming. I also have the Celestron OAG. I'm at about 30 pounds or so, and it's a good match for the mount, but I definitely wouldn't want to go any higher in focal length, or add any more weight.

-Dan

Charlie Carpenter

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Re: Ioptron EQ45 Pro and a Celestron C11 OTA for Astro Imaging
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2018, 09:21:43 AM »
As I might have mentioned before, I do not do guiding on my imaging scopes. I do not use OAG's either, nor do I use a guide scope. It's just a filter wheel, small FR and the ZWO camera. the most that all weighs is maybe 2 lbs total. I just do EAA imaging. Taking 15-30 second subs and live stacking in SharpCap. For planetary imaging, its just the camera on the scope, capturing AVI's in Firecapture for processing later.

So if I used the C11 on the EQ45 scope, it would not be much over 29 lbs tops. Under the 2/3 rule, that is plenty. In Alt Az mode, I could attach the Meade 12" ACF OTA weighing 35 lbs for imaging and probably not have any problems at all either.

I do not have the patience for long exposure imaging. That's a waste of valuable time for capturing as many objects as possible, that I could be using for EAA imaging.
KISS is my motto (Keep it simple, silly) (also the band as well)