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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

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melinda fry
super member


Reged: 04/28/10

Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102
      #5512326 - 11/09/12 09:15 PM

Hi all
I was looking at getting one of these scopes a vixen 115 Ed f7.7
Or the tak tsa 102 f8.
I want to use it as a visual scope for planets , double star. And some of the bigger deep sky objects. I'm not sure which way to go the scopes are the same price here in Sydney as well.
Any help which way to go will be great. Thanks


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tomharri
sage
*****

Reged: 09/19/08

Loc: USA
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5512336 - 11/09/12 09:21 PM

Bigger is better.

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plyscope
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/23/06

Loc: Perth, West Australia
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5512344 - 11/09/12 09:28 PM

If you are only wanting it for visual then the Vixen will show slightly more. Please check out this review.

I have not looked through a Vixen 115 but would expect it to be high quality and well made. I do have a TSA 102 and can confirm it is excellent but perhaps it is not necesary to go to that extent for a visual only scope.

If you ever wanted to sell one of these I think it would be easier to sell the TSA and it may hold it's value slightly better than the Vixen. Either way they are both great scopes for visual and the differences will be minor.


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johnnyha
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/12/06

Loc: Sherman Oaks, CA
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: plyscope]
      #5512451 - 11/09/12 11:20 PM

Yeh I would go TSA102 no question. No regrets later.

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Sky Muse
sage


Reged: 10/26/12

Loc: De Soto County, MS
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5512476 - 11/09/12 11:31 PM

Hello Melinda,

For starters, both utilise ED glass. The Vixen is an ED doublet, while the Takahashi is an ED triplet. The Vixen, if it was the same diameter(102mm), the views would be a tad brighter, but it's a 115mm, so the views would be noticeably brighter.

I like my previous-generation Takahashi FS-102 for its fluorite doublet. It may exhibit just a tiny bit more chromatic abberation than the current triplet, albeit wholly negligible with both being true apochromats, but it's a little brighter and sharper in exchange. Takahashi abandoned the fluorite doublet configuration in four-inch and upwards to the six-inch, either due to rising costs of fluorite or perhaps in an effort to banish spurious color once and for all from their line. I don't think the company ever gave a reason as to why. I've always regretted their decision, and not having bought the FS-152 instead back in 2003.

Here's an interesting review of three refractors...

http://wlcastleman.com/equip/reviews/100mm_refractors/index.htm

If they're the same price, give or take a few dollars, go with the Takahashi. It's quite a presence. It exudes quality, and with views tough to beat. I feel that if one had the Takahashi, they would not regret not having bought the Vixen instead, for long in any case. Conversely, if one had the Vixen, they'll forever wonder what the Takahashi would've been like had they chosen it instead.

For me, the choice is obvious.

Cheers,

Alan


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Erik Bakker
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 08/10/06

Loc: The Netherlands, Europe
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5512605 - 11/10/12 01:34 AM

The Tak is a no-compromise scope for a lifetime. The Vixen, though nice, is a price/size compromise and will likely only last until you upgrade to a Tak or the likes. Besides, the TSA 102 is a smallish 4", the ED115 is considerably bigger in OTA size. So for portability and a lighter mount, the TSA102 wins.


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melinda fry
super member


Reged: 04/28/10

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: Erik Bakker]
      #5513380 - 11/10/12 03:59 PM

Hi everyone thanks for your help.
The vixen is ready to go but with the tak I'm looking buying extra bits to get the scope mounted and fitting with a finder.
But still like the tak. Putting the scopes side by side which would give the better views thanks.


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plyscope
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/23/06

Loc: Perth, West Australia
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5513477 - 11/10/12 05:34 PM

Melinda

This review of the Vixen 115 has direct comparison to Takahashi 102mm and 128mm scopes.

Review of Vixen 115

Andy


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Sky Muse
sage


Reged: 10/26/12

Loc: De Soto County, MS
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5513650 - 11/10/12 08:22 PM

Hello Melinda,

One other important aspect to consider: Which has the highest and most consistent level of quality control, Takahashi, or Vixen? What percentage of, say, 500 units manufactured per company might prove inferior compared to the finest example from each?

In other words, might the receipt of a "dud" be more likely with Vixen, or Takahashi?

Good luck!

Alan


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coopman
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 04/23/06

Loc: South Louisiana
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: Sky Muse]
      #5514179 - 11/11/12 10:09 AM

A TSA-102 popped up for sale on Astromart overnight.

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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5514191 - 11/11/12 10:16 AM

I'd go Tak in that match-up.

- Jim


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jtaylor996
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/02/08

Loc: North Texas
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5516950 - 11/12/12 10:37 PM

You'll hate yourself if you don't get the Tak instead of the Vixen doublet...

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melinda fry
super member


Reged: 04/28/10

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: jtaylor996]
      #5517191 - 11/13/12 01:50 AM

Hi all
Thanks for your help.
Well I did it deposit on a tsa 102N should be here in about 2 weeks.
Just have to get some nice eyepieces to use with it now.


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chboss
professor emeritus


Reged: 03/24/08

Loc: Zurich Switzerland
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5517240 - 11/13/12 03:36 AM

Congratulations this is a great choice!
You are in for a lifetime telescope.

best regards
Chris


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Erik Bakker
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 08/10/06

Loc: The Netherlands, Europe
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5517257 - 11/13/12 03:58 AM

Quote:

Hi all
Thanks for your help.
Well I did it deposit on a tsa 102N should be here in about 2 weeks.
Just have to get some nice eyepieces to use with it now.




Melinda,

You just got yourself an extraordinarily fine telescope that should be with you under the stars for the rest of your life.

On the eyepieces, start with what you already have and slowly take it from there.


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coopman
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 04/23/06

Loc: South Louisiana
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: Erik Bakker]
      #5517694 - 11/13/12 11:13 AM

Way to go, Melinda! You're going to love it. The 27mm Panoptic and 22mm Nagler are favs of mine with my FS-102.

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jtaylor996
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/02/08

Loc: North Texas
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: coopman]
      #5517832 - 11/13/12 12:30 PM

The TSA 102 at F8 is very forgiving on eyepieces, so the world is your oyster in that regard. Many, many designs will work well with that scope.

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FaronD
sage


Reged: 03/25/10

Loc: Richmond Hill, Ontario
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5518693 - 11/13/12 09:05 PM

Hi Melinda, congrats on your purchase!! Whenever I make a substantial purchase, I'll read as many reviews as possible to help me make an informed decision. Afterward, I continue to read to back up my purchase. If you are interested in an excellent shootout where the TSA102 comes out on top, check out Daniel's shootout 2/3rds down the page. There are 110mm and 115mm scopes compared as well.
http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbarchive/showflat.php?Cat=&Board=refractors...

Faron


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melinda fry
super member


Reged: 04/28/10

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: FaronD]
      #5518996 - 11/14/12 01:56 AM

Hi
Thanks I will have a look at that, I can't wait to get my hands on the scope and get out and use it. I saw the review on Astromart I like the finder scope holder he was using on the tsa,
I've been trying to look up to see how it would be, as i have the same finder scope.
If anyone has the part number please let me know.
Thanks again everyone.


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Eric Gage
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 12/13/05

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5519324 - 11/14/12 10:39 AM

Congrats Melinda. You're going to have a great scope. I don't think you can go wrong buying the best optic you can within an aperture class. The "extra reach" of the 115 is not insignificant, but IMO you'd be better off with the best 4" you can afford, supplemented by an 8" (or larger) reflector for the dim stuff.

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Sky Muse
sage


Reged: 10/26/12

Loc: De Soto County, MS
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5519443 - 11/14/12 12:07 PM

Great choice, Melinda!



Cheers!

Alan


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F60.4
member
*****

Reged: 10/26/11

Loc: Norfolk England
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: Sky Muse]
      #5519635 - 11/14/12 02:50 PM

I am repeatedly stunned by the performance of my TSA102.

You will love it. Great choice.


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melinda fry
super member


Reged: 04/28/10

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: F60.4]
      #5520433 - 11/15/12 12:57 AM

I can't wait to get the scope. Fingers crossed for some clear nights,
So that i can get some nice views of Jupiter.


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F60.4
member
*****

Reged: 10/26/11

Loc: Norfolk England
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5521375 - 11/15/12 02:56 PM

I had a great night observing Jupiter last Saturday with the TSA102. With a Nagler 7mm attached, there was detail in the bands, almost filamentous, and shading differentiation toward the poles. Incredible crisp image rendition and contrast. It was very good seeing and transparency conditions helped a lot but the scope is magnificent.

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BillP
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: F60.4]
      #5521592 - 11/15/12 05:16 PM

Quote:

I am repeatedly stunned by the performance of my TSA102.




I am as well. The only scope I've had that has had this affect on me. And if you enjoy pushing the limits of what a 4" can do on planetary, you will thank yourself for going with the better color correction of the TSA over the Vixen as this matters when doing this.


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plyscope
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/23/06

Loc: Perth, West Australia
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: F60.4]
      #5521702 - 11/15/12 06:38 PM Attachment (26 downloads)

I am another happy owner of a TSA 102.

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melinda fry
super member


Reged: 04/28/10

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: FaronD]
      #5521926 - 11/15/12 09:15 PM

Quote:

Hi Melinda, congrats on your purchase!! Whenever I make a substantial purchase, I'll read as many reviews as possible to help me make an informed decision. Afterward, I continue to read to back up my purchase. If you are interested in an excellent shootout where the TSA102 comes out on top, check out Daniel's shootout 2/3rds down the
page. There are 110mm and 115mm scopes compared as well.
[url=http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbarchive/showflat.php?

Cat=&Board=refractors&Number=2624353&bodyprev=]http://www.
.com/ubbarchive/showflat.php?Cat=&Board=refractors...[/url]



Faron




Hi Faron

Great report on the tsa 102


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melinda fry
super member


Reged: 04/28/10

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: plyscope]
      #5521932 - 11/15/12 09:19 PM

Quote:

I am another happy owner of a TSA 102.




Very nice I've got about 3 weeks until I get to see mine like that.


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tomcody
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 07/06/08

Loc: Titusville, Florida
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5522595 - 11/16/12 10:23 AM

Quote:

Hi all
Thanks for your help.
Well I did it deposit on a tsa 102N should be here in about 2 weeks.
Just have to get some nice eyepieces to use with it now.



You only need three:
Ethos 21, 13 and 8mm.
Astro Physics Barcon (gives about 10.5, 6.5 and 4mm with above three)
And I find a Televue Nagler 3-6mm zoom helpful with changing seeing conditions on planets.
I would start with the 13mm and the Barcon (that combo won me over)
Rex


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FaronD
sage


Reged: 03/25/10

Loc: Richmond Hill, Ontario
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5522735 - 11/16/12 11:29 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Hi Melinda, congrats on your purchase!! Whenever I make a substantial purchase, I'll read as many reviews as possible to help me make an informed decision. Afterward, I continue to read to back up my purchase. If you are interested in an excellent shootout where the TSA102 comes out on top, check out Daniel's shootout 2/3rds down the
page. There are 110mm and 115mm scopes compared as well.
[url=http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbarchive/showflat.php?

Cat=&Board=refractors&Number=2624353&bodyprev=]http://www.
.com/ubbarchive/showflat.php?Cat=&Board=refractors...[/url]



Faron




Hi Faron

Great report on the tsa 102





It seems to be the general consensus on that scope.

Faron


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melinda fry
super member


Reged: 04/28/10

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: tomcody]
      #5523783 - 11/17/12 01:54 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Hi all
Thanks for your help.
Well I did it deposit on a tsa 102N should be here in about 2 weeks.
Just have to get some nice eyepieces to use with it now.



You only need three:
Ethos 21, 13 and 8mm
Astro Physics Barcon (gives about 10.5, 6.5 and 4mm with above three)
And I find a Televue Nagler 3-6mm zoom helpful with changing seeing conditions on planets. :grin
I would start with the 13mm and the Barcon (that combo won me over)
Rex [/quot

Hi I'm doing a lay-buy on a 13mm hope to get that before Xmas I've
Always wanted on. What's it like to use with the tsa.


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tomcody
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 07/06/08

Loc: Titusville, Florida
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: melinda fry]
      #5524123 - 11/17/12 10:44 AM

Quote:


I would start with the 13mm and the Barcon (that combo won me over)
Rex

Hi I'm doing a lay-buy on a 13mm hope to get that before Xmas I've
Always wanted on. What's it like to use with the tsa.



Melinda, I think that the combination of TSA102 and Televue Ethos 13mm is magic! I have never seen a better view with any other eyepiece, If I did not want a wider view at times or more power for planets, I would say that one eyepiece (if it is the Ethos 13mm) is all you need with that scope.
Also I can not say enough about how good the AP Barcon works with Ethos eyepieces. ( it extends the eye relief distance of the Ethos and makes them more comfortable than they already are! For this reason, I would not use a power mate type extender with them).
P.S. I plan to get rid of all my eyepieces except for the ones listed above (and my pairs for my Maxbright binos). For me it is all about viewing not collecting, so why keep a bunch of eyepieces around that are not used much when a few great ones will do it all!
Rex


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deeplight
journeyman


Reged: 10/07/07

Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: tomcody]
      #5524530 - 11/17/12 03:00 PM

Rex: I am interested in what eyepieces you use with the binoviewer on your TSA 102. I take it your complete eyepiece set for this scope includes the Ethos 13mm plus 2 or three sets for the bino.
thanks much,
John


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tomcody
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 07/06/08

Loc: Titusville, Florida
Re: Vixen 115 Ed or tak tsa 102 new [Re: deeplight]
      #5524590 - 11/17/12 03:49 PM

Quote:

Rex: I am interested in what eyepieces you use with the binoviewer on your TSA 102. I take it your complete eyepiece set for this scope includes the Ethos 13mm plus 2 or three sets for the bino.
thanks much,
John



John, I have the Ethos 13 and 8mm and a Nagler 26mm (which was half the cost of the 21 Ethos. IF I ever get another clear sky in Florida again? I will check out the Nagler 26 and see if I want to keep it or replace it with a 21 Ethos.
As for the binos, I use Meade series 4000 SWA (Japan) eyepiece pairs in 24, 18 and 13.8 mm and enjoy them very much. I have also purchased Panoptic pairs in 19 and 15 mm, again when I get some good viewing evenings, I will compare them to the Meade SWA's and see which sets I want to keep.
Note, I also have University Optic ortho pairs down to 6mm and a Nagler 7mm pair but I have found that anything under the 13.8 mm pair is not comfortable to view with (probably the small exit pupils are just uncomfortable to keep centered in both eyes) so I stay above 14mm and use GPC's and a Barcon to adjust the final power.
Rex
P.S. I find that either the 18 or 24 mm pairs are the most comfortable and use them often. (with binos, its all about eye comfort and reducing eyestrain and 18 to 25 mm seems to be the sweet spot)


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