Will the ZWO30F4 guide scope suffice for PA

Using SharpCap's Polar Alignment feature
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talbion
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Will the ZWO30F4 guide scope suffice for PA

Post by talbion » Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:25 am

Hi

I am about to buy my first guide scope and camera. Mainly for imaging but also so that I can use SharpCap for PA. I've pretty much decided on the ZWO 290MM mini for the camera but can't decide on the scope. I was thinking of getting a ZWO 60280 but someone recommended the smaller ZWO 30F4 as it's lighter and will have less flexure.

I'm concerned that the smaller aperture (30mm) and focal length (120mm) will be insufficient for SharpCap PA. Has anybody out there used that scope?

Any thoughts or recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Tim

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admin
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Re: Will the ZWO30F4 guide scope suffice for PA

Post by admin » Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:27 pm

Hi Tim,

That scope should be fine. I've had plenty of reports of people using equivalent 30 mm aperture F/4 guide scopes for polar alignment.

Cheers, Robin

talbion
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Re: Will the ZWO30F4 guide scope suffice for PA

Post by talbion » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:45 pm

Hi Robin.

Thanks for your quick feedback! It's a neat looking scope. I like things nice and simple.

Would the Orion 50mm mini guide scope (162mm f/3.2) also work? My limited knowledge suggests the larger aperture would make it better for guiding with fainter stars. So many options!

Cheers

Tim

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Re: Will the ZWO30F4 guide scope suffice for PA

Post by turfpit » Fri Aug 09, 2019 5:46 am

Tim

Enter orion 50mm in the Search box at the top right of the forum screen - plenty of info found relating to this guidescope.

Dave

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Re: Will the ZWO30F4 guide scope suffice for PA

Post by admin » Fri Aug 09, 2019 7:46 pm

Hi,

The Orion scope would win slightly on brightness as it is a faster scope, and the field of view would still be fine. However a lot will depend on the quality of the optics – F/3.2 is very fast – you usually pay top money for telescopes or camera lenses with that sort of focal ratio or faster. I have no personal knowledge of this particular guide scope, but I would be worried about the optical quality of the budget scope at that sort of F ratio. I did have a F/4 Orion (or at least Orion clone) cheap guide scope and it failed to produce nice sharp stars. My Altair F/4 guide scope is in a different league – it produces much tighter star images.

Cheers, Robin

talbion
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Re: Will the ZWO30F4 guide scope suffice for PA

Post by talbion » Sat Aug 10, 2019 12:35 am

G'day gents.

Thanks again for your help with this. It's much appreciated.

Dave, I searched the forums for posts relating to the Orion scope but didn't find much. No glaring complaints but also no glowing praises either. It looks like it's not a bad scope considering the price. The same seems to go for the ZWO 30F4 so I was hoping for a comparison of the two. In reality I reckon either of them will suit my needs as I start out in guiding.

Robin, good point about the optics! It sounds like the ZWO30F4 has enough light gathering to do the job so it might be a safer bet for now.

I'll give it some more thought over the weekend and do some shopping next week. I'll give some feedback here when I get the gear and give it a test.

Cheers

Tim

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