REVIEW OF SUMERIAN OPTICS ALKAID 16” TRAVEL SCOPE
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The Meade Infinity 102 AZ Altazimuth Refractor A Review by Bill Steen September, 2014 This review is in response to feedback I requested and received on an article submitted to Cloudy Nights on my thoughts on the two new lines of Meade entry level scopes, the Infinity Altazimuth and Polaris Equatorial series. After a few weeks, I received a cryptic email from Meade telling me that an Infinity 102 AZ Refractor and a Polaris 130 Equatorial Reflector were being sent to me for my review, with no other words.
Highlights: Comet Journal, Martian Landers, Meteor Showers, Planet Plotting, November Moon
Focus Constellations: Cassiopeia, Perseus, Taurus, Auriga, Camelopardalis, Lynx, Ursa Major, Ursa Minor, Draco, Cepheus, Lyra, Cygnus, Aquarius, Pegasus, Pisces, Andromeda
William Optics WO-Star71 71mm f/4.9 Apo Imaging Refractor It is very well designed, solidly built and produces sharp images. What more could you want?
Highlights: Comet Journal, Martian Landers, Meteor Showers, Planet Plotting, October Moon
Focus Constellations: Cassiopeia, Perseus, Camelopardalis, Ursa Major, Ursa Minor, Draco, Cepheus, Cygnus, Lyra, Aquila, Capricornus, Aquarius, Pegasus, Pisces, Andromeda
Regardless of your observing site, be it under dark rural skies or from a more cosmopolitan setting, hunting down binary stars through binoculars is a great way to confirm the quality of your optics, your eyesight, and your powers of observation. This month, we have a selection of targets that range from easily resolved through pocket binoculars to challenging through the best 10x and 11x pairs.
The North America Nebula (NGC 7000) is a large expanse of glowing hydrogen gas mixed with opaque clouds of cosmic dust just 3 degrees east of Deneb (Alpha Cygni) and 1 degree to the west of 4th-magnitude Xi Cygni. Famous as one of the most luminous blue supergiants visible in the night sky, Deneb marks the tail of Cygnus the Swan, or if you prefer, the top of the Northern Cross asterism.
I have always said that if I had to go from having a couple of scopes to one in weighing aperture versus portability, contrast and almost crystalline view, then that one scope would be a decent aperture refractor. This 120 might just be the ticket.
Not into “heavy scientific” work? Just want to enjoy the colorful rainbows of other stars, or see the fascinating absorption line detail in the solar spectrum? A number of options, some quite inexpensive, are available to display spectra for you.
Of all the mounts I have purchased over the years this one is quickly becoming my favorite.