Skywatcher Allview

A few months back I finally bit the bullet and purchased a Skywatcher All-View, a motorised platform for telescopes and cameras which I’d had my eye on for a while with a view to finally using the telescope I had bought on a whim a few months back which had been gathering dust in garage ever since (impulse purchases will be my downfall!), but it also had the advantage of being able to control a DSLR attached to it whilst also panning which makes it ideal for doing motion timelapses, or hyperlapse as they seem to be called these days.

And so to present day and I’m stood in freezing weather in Salford Quays with the guys from Welshot Imaging on a workshop, ideal opportunity then to finally give it a quick trial.

Given that to get a smooth and decent length timelapse I’d be looking at remaining in situ for much longer than the 30 minutes we had, this was very much a ‘get it set up as quick as possible and get as much as possible’ type trial, which is the first problem I encountered, this thing including the sturdy tripod legs to support it are not light! It then requires some wrangling to get everything attached together and secure. Ideally should also spend some time finding the ‘no parallax point’ for the chosen lens & camera combo, but as this was just a trial I chose to skip this bit.

After everything was screwed together and plugged in, actually pretty simple getting the thing started. The backlit screen on the handset to control the mount is quite user-friendly, asking for a few inputs such as exposure length, frames required and gap between each. Then just use the handset to move the mount to the start and end position, hit the go button and then wait, lots!

Once I’ve got some much better planned and executed timelapses done with it will get a proper review type post done, but in meantime the below was the result of this quick trial, not particularly exciting (or long!), but it was just intended to show it works, now to scout some better locations and a portable chair!

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