Re: cameras and lens

Message posted by JB737 on November 30, 2007 at 14:06:57 PST:

It's fine to support your local camera dealer, who can probably also order a complete telescope or bare "optical tube assembly" (telescope body without the eyepieces and so forth for visual use) from Celestron or Meade for you and adapt it to your camera. It is very simple, usually needing only a female "T ring" for your camera body, and a male "T adapter" for the scope.

But if you're at all into eBay, you'll find bargains there on used scopes, and especially on manual-focus camera lenses which are out of style due to auto-everything digital SLR cameras. I paid something like $250 for the 750mm f/6 Celestron. There is currently a 1250mm f/10 Celestron on eBay (item 290187315850) for $300 starting bid or $500 "buy it now", which includes a lot of extra astronomy-specific stuff that could be sold off to net you the optical tube for very little or maybe even free. I'm not vouching for the seller, just giving an example of pricing on the used market. New Asian goods are available cheaply "1000mm lens" or "1200mm lens" for instance. One guy in Hong Kong sells a decent-looking setup with adapter for $258.

Camera makers intentionally obsolete equipment, but it still works fine for Area 51 purposes. Nikon in disables the light meter on my D70 when I attach any manual-focus lens (with the rare exception of a "P" type Nikon lens) including a telescope with adapter. This is not a problem for anything but action photos in rapidly varying light conditions. I just take a photo, look at it on the LCD screen, maybe check the histogram graph, and manually adjust the shutter speed until all is perfect.

Local want ads also have some bargains, though as often as not they are deluded about the value, so be careful. As with used computers, don't pay much, no matter what the original cost was. Manual focus lenses are the photo-equipment version of CRT computer monitors: ready to be left out at the curb for garbage collection despite still working fine.


In Reply to: Re: cameras and lens posted by J356 on November 30, 2007 at 5:22:56 PST:


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