suitable laptop for astrophotography

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suitable laptop for astrophotography

Postby Martindavos » Tue Oct 18, 2016 2:06 pm

Hi all, my current laptop is on its way out and I am looking to purchase a new one. My budget isn't great, as far as laptops go (£350), but I was wondering if there are any specific specifications I should be looking for. I have been looking at a couple of Lenovo's on Amazon which has a vast price range. Any hints/tips on what I should be looking for to steer me in the right direction would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance

Martin
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Re: suitable laptop for astrophotography

Postby Aratus » Tue Oct 18, 2016 5:11 pm

When is comes to capturing images from a camera, the limiting factor used to be the USB speed, but as long as the camera will use USB3, then a laptop with USB3 should be sufficient. When it comes to processing then the faster the computer processor the better. As far as memory is concerned you need as much as you can afford. 8Gb is probably the minimum now-a-days.

If it is any consolation I use USB 2 and a 6 year old laptop for capturing. It manages with the size of frame I use.
I use an 11" Celestron SCT (CPC 1100) on an equatorial wedge, housed in a 2.2m Pulsar observatory. I use a ZWO ASI1600MC and Canon 500D for imaging.
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Re: suitable laptop for astrophotography

Postby Martindavos » Wed Oct 19, 2016 2:57 pm

Thank you for your reply Aratus, very helpful. The camera I am using (Optic star PX-137c) is only compatible with USB 2.0. Luckily the computer I am looking at has both USB 2.0 and 3.0. If I ever choose to upgrade. The specs on the Lenovo computer I am looking at seem to be sufficient and at £349.99 I can't really complain.

Thank you again

Martin
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Re: suitable laptop for astrophotography

Postby Gfamily2 » Wed Oct 19, 2016 8:45 pm

Martindavos wrote:Thank you for your reply Aratus, very helpful. The camera I am using (Optic star PX-137c) is only compatible with USB 2.0. Luckily the computer I am looking at has both USB 2.0 and 3.0. If I ever choose to upgrade. The specs on the Lenovo computer I am looking at seem to be sufficient and at £349.99 I can't really complain.

Thank you again

Martin

How much RAM? See about getting more - it's a relatively affordable upgrade that should help processing.

Also, do you have an effective data backup system? You don't want to have all your data on your laptop and nowhere else. Whether that's an external drive that you are methodical about backing up with, or some sort of network storage that you can use for automated backups - you really don't want to risk losing it.
Scopes: Meade 8" SCT, Skywatcher 127mm Mak, Raffle winner of SW ST80
For imaging: Pentax K5, Asda webcam, Star Adventurer (new toy)
For companionship: Mid Cheshire Astronomical Group.
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Re: suitable laptop for astrophotography

Postby Aratus » Thu Oct 20, 2016 5:17 pm

This is a good point. In order to keep costs down laptops are often sold with minimum RAM. Sometimes it is better to keep some money back and get an upgrade to a modest computer from the beginning. For instance you don't need fancy graphics or sound cards. Get a laptop without those items but then pay extra for a memory upgrade. Even a slower processor is not too much of a problem itself, but you might have to develop a lot of patience. :D
I use an 11" Celestron SCT (CPC 1100) on an equatorial wedge, housed in a 2.2m Pulsar observatory. I use a ZWO ASI1600MC and Canon 500D for imaging.
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Re: suitable laptop for astrophotography

Postby Martindavos » Fri Oct 21, 2016 10:47 am

This has been a great help. Thank you again .
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Re: suitable laptop for astrophotography

Postby The Man with the Corrugated Iron Roof » Sat Oct 29, 2016 12:17 am

I sometimes have stacking programs running for over an hour!
How can I be one with the universe when we don't know what 96% of it is.

My website: http://www.philippughastronomer.com/

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