I have been reading a few articles and posts, and I think I got a decent idea of how to get started. I'd really appreciate it if you could help me validate my initial plan. I am new to astronomy, and I trust experts will immediately spot any rookie mistake.
My 6yo would love to see Saturn up close. I based my research on the specs needed to distinguish Saturn's rings and moons. The plan is to start with that to then dive into astronomy together with my son. Since I am into RPis, and the budget is modest, I would like to make it also a fun, cheap project, adding auto-tracking and astrophotography to the mix.
I am eyeing a Celestron NexStar 102 SLT (<£350). I have been advised on a minimum of 3" and 50x, and that model seems to be better. I guess I'll also need an RPi 4 2GB or superior, an RPi HD camera, a 1.25-inch C-mount adapter. Optionally, a touch-screen. I am still trying to understand if there is a mount for the RPi or better off with long cables.
Astroberry or Stellarmate (I am assuming that besides the premium support, they both offer tracking and compatibility with HD camera). I am still unclear how the GPS would work.
All looks good except perhaps for RPI HD camera. While there is a driver for it, it's not as mature as the other drivers for different cameras. Might be better to get Toupcam/Altair/ZWO/QHY small cameras. A webcam would be an option if you can mount it and achieve focus.
My main advice would be to join your local astronomy club, at least post-pandemic when meetups start again,
in addition to what you have planned.
While I find this a very rewarding hobby, it isn't a simple one and can be frustrating on startup.
Having experienced people who can show your and your son equipment and images "in person" is a great help.
I wouldn't have managed without mentorship from the wonderful folks at www.sjaa.net/