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[merlin/orion] Where To Buy?

PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2008 8:22 am
by fma38
DrSlony wrote:How much does the merlin head cost?

~ 240€

It would be good to write a basic info page about it in the wiki in the hardware section, along with a link where it could be bought.

Well, let's use this thread... I will keep the first post up-to-date according of informations given here...

In france:

* http://www.astronome.fr/produit-monture-multi-fonctions-merlin-696.html

USA:

* http://www.telescope.com/control/product/~category_id=101607clearance/~product_id=09441

All distributors:

* http://www.telescope.com/control/view/page?p=intlp://www.telescope.com/control/view/page?p=intl

PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2008 12:36 pm
by klausesser
Hi Frédéric and all!

You suggested a good idea - to collect informations from Merlin-users here.

To start i would like to say that it´s a real good device - not only related to it´s price!
Related to it´s price the Merlin is an unbeatable bargain i mean.

I use it mainly with a Canon 20D and 5D - without battery grip it fits perfect without other modification as to
reduce the L to make it one rail whicht fits into the dovetail.
Camera´s NPP is then exactly in the vertical and horizontal axis. Until now i tested 20, 35, 85 and 300mm= steady and precise!
One shortcome is the base when using fisheyes for spheres: the downsight is limited. But i think it could be made smaller!

The only problem is the controlling - i don´t want to catty a laptop around.

Fred´s PapyWizard runs GREAT with the head and a laptop! Did stitches with the 85mm at 2,50m distance. 12 pics - no offset! Stitched effordlessly in APP in a very short time.

best, Klaus

PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2008 3:46 pm
by fma38
This thread is mainly to collect commercial informations about Merlin/Orion head (where to buy one)... Better using this one for device choice to run papywizard:

http://www.autopano.net/forum/t3540-merlin-orion-something-to-run-papywizard

PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2008 10:13 pm
by BeeZed
The Orion website has it here:

http://www.telescope.com/control/product/~category_id=101607clearance/~product_id=09441

They only ship to USA.

They also have a list of international distributors:

http://www.telescope.com/control/view/page?p=intl

I am a little worried about the word clearance in the URL. Are they going to discontinue this model?

PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2008 11:27 am
by DrSlony
So what would the total price be of the motorized head with all other necessary equipment? And would it work with a Pentax k10d?

PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2008 5:15 pm
by claudevh
Hi all,

If you want to buy the Merlin/Orion Multifunction at the minimum price, you can buy it without Tripod only with the handset.
Actually the price is 159 Euros + Shipping costs (where normally with tripod +/- 240 Euros) this put the price for tripod very high isn't ?!?
Anyway, all of you are probably photographs and "as such" equiped with photo tripods, the only problem sometime will be the fixation of the Merlin on the tripod ... (this is a standard fixation not the small "congres" type but the other big one ...) :rolleyes:

I discover this proposal recently at the following WebShop :
http://www.teleskop-austria.at/prod.php?tid=24&lng=de#goto-bandit-nn
The web site is only in german language and other romanian, hungarian etc ... not in french :o


This supplier is very correct, I order astronomical stuff regularly !
("Pub not paid...) ;)

Don't buy the "Autotrack" type witch will cause severe problems for panoramic photography (nodal alignment etc...)

Claude
:cool:

PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 7:33 am
by tived
Hi guys,

I too would like to get involved with this, I am interested in astro photography or at least I would like to get involved. However, I am using Canon 1-series camera, would they be usable on one of these beasts, the Orion or Merlin?
Since I live in a rather warm climate, western australia, is there anything I need to consider?

I think this could be a great photo adventure, capture parts of the night sky and part landscape....could we do pano's with beast? or have I completely missed the point here :-) most likely

Thanks

HEnrik

PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 5:57 pm
by Edge@51
I just tried your link claudevh, but I think I made something wrong ... I was looking for the delivery cost, I "simulated" an order, and this website now told me that I made an order ??? I haven't gave any credit card information, I just created an account? If you have already made order on this website, can you give me more inforemation about the order process of this website?
thanks :)

PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 8:38 pm
by claudevh
You can find the delivery costs by following this link:
http://www.teleskop-austria.at/faq.php?lng=de

This is the link to the FAQ (Frequently Asked Question), the shipping costs are at the page bottom.

The Web Shop don't use Paypall or other Credit card systems, but you have to pay by Bank Account, see information in the next link at item 8.6
http://www.teleskop-austria.at/contact.php?lng=de

Normaly you will get a Email from the supplier asking confirmation of your order.
If you have placed an order accidentally, you can send a Email to the supplier to tell him that this was by mistake ( they understand and write English .... malheureusement je pense pas le Francais)
info@teleskop-austria.com

Have nice dreams
Bonsoir,

Claude

PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 9:49 pm
by Edge@51
Thanks Claude, I just send them an e-mail to "cancel" the order (if I really made an order).

Regards,

Etienne

PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2008 6:31 pm
by fma38
@tived, Merlin and Orion ise the same product, depending where it is sold (US or Europe).

PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 4:06 am
by tived
Thanks Frédéric,

much appreciated

Henrik

PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 4:08 am
by tived
How fast can the Merlin, move the camera around?

I was thinking if one could attached this to a Large format camera and let the Merlin move the camera around in a 3x3 to archive a large size image, but using flat stitching...eg only move the rear

thanks

Henrik

PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 7:07 am
by fma38
The fastest speed is 360° in 50s.

PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 12:28 pm
by klausesser
tived wrote:Thanks Frédéric,

much appreciated

Henrik

Using a LF-camera you won´t need a vertical movement. In that case a one-axis motor might be suitable and more stable. Like the Pano-Machine as an example - but it costs around 1000.-€ . . . this ois very expensive for a one-axis driven device . . i personally mean.

As i said before: using a stitcher like APP and shooting 25-30% overlap you really don´t need high precision in positioning. So a cheaper motorized mount will absolutely do!

Mounting a LF to the Merlin would work if the LF isn´t too LF . . (i wouldn´t put an 8x10" on it . . . ;):cool: ) I tested a Hasselblad H3 on the Merlin and it worked fine. Also did a Fuji 6x9 rangefinder.
They were NPP-adjustable and the motors had no problem to move them precisely into postition.

Being built for astronomical use the Merlin isn´t fast moving! But related to the price i can easily forget some seconds of speed for positioning . . . :rolleyes:

best, Klaus

PostPosted: Tue Oct 07, 2008 4:34 pm
by mediavets
I've found a UK reseller of the Merlin mount - price is GBP149 plus delivery cost in UK of GBP4.95 for next day delivery:
http://www.telescopeplanet.co.uk/ViewProdDetails.asp?prod_code=PON07H000014

There is a short review in English too:
http://www.telescopeplanet.co.uk/review.asp?prod_code=PON07H000014

And you can download the short Manual in English:
http://www.skywatchertelescope.net/swtsupport/Instruction_Manuals/Multi-function%20mount.pdf

PostPosted: Sun Nov 09, 2008 1:59 am
by mediavets
Good offer on Merlin head for UK customers - includes an interesting A-frame table top mount as well as the tripod for GBP 149.99 including delivery in the UK:
http://www.pulsar-optical.co.uk/prod/merlin/starter-scope/refractor/merlindeluxe.html

I wish I'd got mine from this company (I might have had less hassle than I did) as they appear to be a very well set up with a large showroom and warehouse (not just a mail order web site operation) and they are based near Ely, Cambridgeshire, close to where I live but I've only just 'come across' them on the Web.

PostPosted: Sun Nov 09, 2008 6:25 am
by irpano
Tived
Hi, I'm in Canberra and am investigating the merlin/Orion system with the papywizard. Found that TASCOE Sales are distributors for tracking head - Address 6/9 13 Winbourne road Brookvale NSW - Ph 02 9938 3244. If they can supply its only a matter (I Think) to get the Papywizard software and a rs232 controller from tronisoft.
I will ring them on Monday to see if they can help.

PostPosted: Sun Nov 09, 2008 10:15 am
by mediavets
irpano wrote:Tived
Hi, I'm in Canberra and am investigating the merlin/Orion system with the papywizard. Found that TASCOE Sales are distributors for tracking head - Address 6/9 13 Winbourne road Brookvale NSW - Ph 02 9938 3244. If they can supply its only a matter (I Think) to get the Papywizard software and a rs232 controller from tronisoft.
I will ring them on Monday to see if they can help.

Tronisoft used to say that that would deliver worlwide on their web site.

Now I see they only mention deliveries to the UK - and say "Tronisoft may refuse any order that is placed for delivery outside the UK."

But see if they will post to Australia - I expect they will - but if not then I would be willing to act as 'middle man'.

I see Tronisoft has some items listed on eBay - eBay member name 'usbserial' - and quotes worldwide delivery; at the moment they don't have the 4201 module listed although they are listing the BTLink RS232-Bluetooth adapter (which you will need, or something equivalent to this, if you plan to host the Papywizard software on a Nokia Internet Tablet). Their web site prices are a little less than their eBay prices:

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Bluetooth-to-RS232-Serial-Adapter-Dongle-100m-UK_W0QQitemZ300269749632QQcmdZViewItem?hash=item300269749632&_trksid=p3911.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1301|66%3A2|65%3A12|39%3A1|240%3A1318

PostPosted: Sun Nov 09, 2008 1:48 pm
by mediavets
irpano wrote:Tived
Hi, I'm in Canberra and am investigating the merlin/Orion system with the papywizard. Found that TASCOE Sales are distributors for tracking head - Address 6/9 13 Winbourne road Brookvale NSW - Ph 02 9938 3244. I will ring them on Monday to see if they can help.

This the head you need:
http://www.skywatchertelescope.net/swtinc/product.php?id=119&class1=3&class2=306

PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2009 6:04 pm
by Ken S
:cool: Below is a link where you can buy the Sky-Watcher Multi-Function Mount Item# SWU005 (same as the Merlin/Orion Multifunction) at an excellent price. It's available without a tripod at Telescopes.com, see:
http://www.telescopes.com/telescope-accessories/mounts-and-tripods/skywatchermultifunctionmount.cfm

It's currently priced at $175.00 with free shipping and if you enter Promo Code: SG-5692 at checkout there is a discount of $10.00.

:) $165.00 is a great price!

The instruction manual for the Sky-Watcher Multi-Function Mount is available here:
http://www.skywatchertelescope.net/swtsupport/Instruction_Manuals/Multi-function%20mount.pdf

PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2009 10:28 pm
by DukeNukeIt
Hey Ken,

Fellow Detroiter here! Just got my Merlin from Telescopes.com, but strange thing is it came with a tripod and not the smaller table mount...?? Oh well, just the same I'll be using it on my Manfrotto tripod with a quick disconnect. I'm still waiting for my Tronisoft kit, but when it comes in I'll have to start playing around :)

Send me an e-mail if you want to collaborate on anything around here!

Thanks,
Dave
davidholmes1970@hotmail.com

PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 1:50 am
by tarnis
Just ordered mine...delivery date in a month!?!? :) Weird.

The huge price difference between telescopes.com and skywatcher I assume is for the tripod I won't use?

PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 10:14 am
by claudevh
Hi Tarnis,

The price difference come from the fact that the one you buy has no goto facilities .... this is the right choice for Pano etc...
The other has a special hand-held who is able to give the Go-To capabilities for pure astronomical use, you should not buy this because this is no camera build-in remote.

For the interface, please dont' buy via Tronisoft !
Have a look at the post:

http://www.autopano.net/forum/p39497-yesterday-01-55-31#p39497

:cool:

PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 12:11 pm
by tarnis
When will the cables be available?

And shouldn't the other unit be removed from the wiki?