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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

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orion61

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Reged: 10/20/07

Loc: Birthplace James T Kirk
Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors
      #5600272 - 01/01/13 08:23 PM

Being new to decent (If you call a Meade ED 102mm a decent)
refractor,
Can anybody agree on the top 10 MODERN refractors available?
also scopes that the majority of people can afford say
6K and under.
Are there any ED scopes there?
I would also put VALUE as one factor hopefully.
I know you can buy a beautiful 50mm APO for a grand but the same money could buy a pretty decent 4 or 5" ED
At least I think.. Im going to be looking at these for some research for a future purchase...


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FirstSightModerator
Duke of Deneb
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Reged: 12/26/05

Loc: Raleigh, NC
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: orion61]
      #5600299 - 01/01/13 08:41 PM

The Televue NP-101 should be on any such "top 10" list. The availability and 6K "affordability" criteria would keep any otherwise appropriately "top" nomineees from Astrophysics from making the list. I'm sure some folks will make some good nominations from Takahashi or Stellarvue, among others.

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Erik Bakker
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Reged: 08/10/06

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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: FirstSight]
      #5600315 - 01/01/13 08:52 PM

OK, so let me do the Tak nominations for visual use :

1. FS102 NSV fluorite doublet
2. FC76 DS fluorite doublet
3. FC60

In the bigger sizes, I enjoy the elegance and pure visual joy of high-end dobsonians. Hence I ended up with the magnificent MW 16" f/5.


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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: orion61]
      #5600322 - 01/01/13 08:55 PM

A couple of thoughts:

If you are thinking of the best 10 modern refractors, then attempting to include "value" only confuses the issue. The Orion ED-80 is certainly a great value and offers near the performance of the Lomo 80mm F/6 triplet but in the final analysis, one is a great value and one is a great scope.

In terms of the most influential, most copied modern refractor, in my mind, it would have to be something from Astro-Physics. There was a time when an FPL-53 Triplet was a rare, even unique, and untried design...

Jon


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orion61

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Reged: 10/20/07

Loc: Birthplace James T Kirk
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5600389 - 01/01/13 09:50 PM

Ok if 6K takes away the top AP performers how much do they cost???
Are we we talking the total GNP of a Small Country?
OK Not knowing much about refractor prices, lets leave off the best deal part... just the best..


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APtelephoto
super member


Reged: 04/17/10

Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: orion61]
      #5600457 - 01/01/13 10:23 PM

The AP130EDFGT is just under 6K as we speak.

Roland and the Gang at AP are still producing this gem but if you have not been on "the list" for many years you will need to find a "used' one for sale... mine is not for sale.

"Used" ones will exceed the 6K limit.

Pete

Edited by APtelephoto (01/01/13 10:40 PM)


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Kevin Barker
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Reged: 04/22/09

Loc: Auckland, NZ
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: APtelephoto]
      #5600472 - 01/01/13 10:32 PM

I'll stick to scopes I have seen through (no particular order) but Zeiss APQ 100 on top.
Zeiss APQ 100/1000(it cost $3600 for ota back in the early 1990's)
Takahashi FS series. FS 102 is a beaut scope for visual use.
D&G 5 inch f-15 and 6 inch f-12. Quality achromats which really perform well.
AP 105 Travelor, exquisite optics.
Zeiss AS 80/840 and 100/1000 semi apo's. Both produce very pleasing images.

Celestron C102 fluorite version, from the 1990'2 very nice.

Zeiss C63/840 and AS 63/840, small aperture but very good optics.

I would add my APQ 130/1000 but it cost a bit more than $6 k US.

Kevin Barker


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teelgul
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Loc: Australia
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Kevin Barker]
      #5600592 - 01/02/13 12:36 AM

We,have 3 variables here TOP,CURRENT ,MODERN.
Zeiss an all time great above and beyond question but not,CURRENT .
All CURRENTLY produced scopes from,AP ,TAK,TEC, officina stellare ,any size,Priced above or below 6k, have TOP optics,mechanics, MODERN materials,design,modular,capability. and so on___
of course there is televue with, TOP of the line optics , and great build.but unfortunately not,very MODERN in terms of,technique or materials or may be a little slow to catch up.(courtesy a paper,baffling
Which tends to peel off and an occasional loose rack till,advent of,starlight ).

Edited by teelgul (01/02/13 02:06 AM)


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Tom and Beth
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Reged: 01/08/07

Loc: Tucson, AZ
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: teelgul]
      #5600601 - 01/02/13 12:50 AM Attachment (214 downloads)

OK, here's two of them

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Traveler
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 08/19/07

Loc: The Netherlands
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Tom and Beth]
      #5600663 - 01/02/13 01:57 AM Attachment (115 downloads)

...and here is another two of them:

AP Traveler and Tak FS-60CB

Edited by Traveler (01/02/13 02:00 AM)


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mmalik
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: orion61]
      #5600733 - 01/02/13 04:54 AM

TEC 140mm f/7 APO ED

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JJK
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 04/28/08

Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: teelgul]
      #5600759 - 01/02/13 06:29 AM

Quote:

We,have 3 variables here TOP,CURRENT ,MODERN.
Zeiss an all time great above and beyond question but not,CURRENT .
All CURRENTLY produced scopes from,AP ,TAK,TEC, officina stellare ,any size,Priced above or below 6k, have TOP optics,mechanics, MODERN materials,design,modular,capability. and so on___
of course there is televue with, TOP of the line optics , and great build.but unfortunately not,very MODERN in terms of,technique or materials or may be a little slow to catch up.(courtesy a paper,baffling
Which tends to peel off and an occasional loose rack till,advent of,starlight ).




The topic of this thread is "Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors". "Top" is not one of the variables. "Top 10" is.

IMO, the "or" qualifies Kevin's picks of Zeiss APQ apos, which aren't exactly Brashear refractors, as relevant. Also, suggesting that the APQs are an all time great is an understatement.


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Fomalhaut
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 08/16/08

Loc: Switzerland
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: JJK]
      #5600821 - 01/02/13 07:57 AM

After many comparisons (even with the Zeiss APQ-100/640) I wouldn't give the following one away for any of the above 4-inchers:

www.astro-foren.de/showthread.php?13579-Takahashi-FCT-100-640
(just move cursor on pictures to enlarge)

Since this multi-coated and (other than the APQ) air-spaced 100/640 fluorite-triplet is not available new any more, I personally would go for today's TSA-102/816 that has very similar characteristics of performance to the FCT-100.

Chris


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t.r.
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Fomalhaut]
      #5600844 - 01/02/13 08:32 AM

Here is a few I highly regard that should make any such list in no particular order of preference...

TEC 180FL
AP 175 EDF
TEC 140 ED
TV 127
AP 130 GT
TEC 110 FL
TV NP 101
TMB 92 SS/L
TV 85
TMB 80 SS

...at least, these are the ones I drool over!


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orion61

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Reged: 10/20/07

Loc: Birthplace James T Kirk
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Fomalhaut]
      #5600870 - 01/02/13 08:58 AM

Quote:

After many comparisons (even with the Zeiss APQ-100/640) I wouldn't give the following one away for any of the above 4-inchers:

www.astro-foren.de/showthread.php?13579-Takahashi-FCT-100-640
(just move cursor on pictures to enlarge)

Since this multi-coated and (other than the APQ) air-spaced 100/640 fluorite-triplet is not available new any more, I personally would go for today's TSA-102/816 that has very similar characteristics of performance to the FCT-100.

Chris



I have an old early 70's Sandcast Celestron C8 that has very good optics for a commercial SCT but I took a Meade 102 ED in a trade and kind of got bit by the refractor bug. I was blown away by the contrast and sharp image, Doubles look just like the "textbook" images closing in on Daws limit.
THEN I looked through a 5" Tak a friend sold for 3k
I couldn't come up with the money in time,
I am still blown away that my 102 gives Planetary detail equal or better than my C8, which has beaten every other C8 or Meade 8 I have compaired it side to side with.
It seems that Refractors are kind of Kin with Automotive speed!
the last 20% cost 80% more! But I get it now,
I have to admit except for Deep Space its hard to look through the obstructed scope after the PURE views of the refractor. I have a 7" Meade mak that is no slouch,
but how good is the ED of mine rated? I only have about $400
invested in it and it is mint, not a scratch.
If I hadn't spoiled myself and looked through the Tak I wouldn't be here asking LOL..


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Malabargold
member


Reged: 07/15/12

Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: orion61]
      #5600890 - 01/02/13 09:27 AM

Any scope made by Astrophysics from the late 1990's onward would be my picks.

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FirstSightModerator
Duke of Deneb
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Reged: 12/26/05

Loc: Raleigh, NC
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Malabargold]
      #5600899 - 01/02/13 09:39 AM

Quote:

Any scope made by Astrophysics from the late 1990's onward would be my picks.




The difference between Televue refractors and Astrophysics refractors is the lenses. Televue refractor lenses are made of very exotic glass, but Astrophysics lenses are made from unobtanium.


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M13 Observer
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/09/06

Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: FirstSight]
      #5600933 - 01/02/13 10:15 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Any scope made by Astrophysics from the late 1990's onward would be my picks.




The difference between Televue refractors and Astrophysics refractors is the lenses. Televue refractor lenses are made of very exotic glass, but Astrophysics lenses are made from unobtanium.




Close. If you save up some money and watch Astromart, every so often someone sells off something with "Astro-Physics" engraved upon it or so labeled. Rarely there are bargains but they usually require the purchase of a "complete" kit which you will have to part out, unless it ends up being better than what you already have and you can afford to keep it all. The best bargains appear to be the AP130EDF telescopes, made from about 1995 on to 2003 or so. Since so many TEC140 and AP130GT telescopes have been produced and are still being produced since 2005, and as I type, the "older" 130EDF's can be found rarely for around $5700 to $6K. TEC140's come up from time to time for around $5K although I don't follow the second hand prices as closely. I hesitate to call any of these telescopes "used". At their value, you will generally find that they are very well cared for and while they have been out of the case and under the night sky, they are kept essentially in "as new" or close to it condition. Yes there can be paint chips on the dew shield edges, and where rings attach, etc, but if so, the price asked should reflect these slight imperfections. Yes, they are not "factory fresh" but in most cases they can be acquired with some patience and timing.


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Mr Onions
Two Time International Photographical Competition Winner
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Reged: 04/14/07

Loc: Newcastle upon Tyne.
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: M13 Observer]
      #5600984 - 01/02/13 10:40 AM

The APM/TMB 100/800

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johnnyha
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Loc: Sherman Oaks, CA
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Mr Onions]
      #5601085 - 01/02/13 11:26 AM

The price has currently gone a bit above $6K, and it is has not been produced in about seven years, and yes I am prejudiced - but I think the Tak FS152 would handily beat quite a few that have been nominated, based on actual image quality.

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Rutilus
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/17/10

Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: johnnyha]
      #5601398 - 01/02/13 03:00 PM Attachment (109 downloads)

For just visual use, I would say that you do not need to spend a fortune to get outstanding views.
Over the Christmas period I have been testing my my home-built Carton lens 100mmm f/13 up against
a Tak TSA-102, a superb Tak FS-102 and a skywatcher 100ED.
From what I Observed, I would put the Carton right up there with both the Taks.
Here she is, a superb performing scope that cost less than
many high-end eyepeices.


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mikey cee
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Rutilus]
      #5601659 - 01/02/13 05:52 PM

This thread has not only very high quality scopes in it but has about as much "brand loyalty" built into it too. I'd definitely agree with you Rutilus. If he believes that his Carton 100mm F/13 ranks right up there with Taks I think he has a valid point. Therefore being an Istar lens user I'd definitely place Istar's triplets and fluorite ED's right at the top of the mix. I definitely believe the Istars are the "sleepers" currently available! Mike

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AlbertoJ
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Loc: Madrid (España)
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: mikey cee]
      #5601975 - 01/02/13 09:14 PM

Refractors new available under $6K:
-Takahashi TSA-120.
-Takahashi TSA-102.
-TEC-140.
-Tele Vue NP-101.
-Tele Vue 85.


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teelgul
sage


Reged: 09/02/11

Loc: Australia
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: mikey cee]
      #5602037 - 01/02/13 10:03 PM

Quote:

This thread has not only very high quality scopes in it but has about as much "brand loyalty" built into it too. I'd definitely agree with you Rutilus. If he believes that his Carton 100mm F/13 ranks right up there with Taks I think he has a valid point. Therefore being an Istar lens user I'd definitely place Istar's triplets and fluorite ED's right at the top of the mix. I definitely believe the Istars are the "sleepers" currently available! Mike


may be televue ,i star ,carton all have lenses from the same source.

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ohioalfa64
sage


Reged: 08/16/12

Loc: Ohio (NW)
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: teelgul]
      #5603680 - 01/03/13 08:48 PM

What if this became the 10 best used refractors priced below $2000 on CN and AM? You see the prices daily. If you think the best bargains are under $1000 then identify those. Sorry for spinning this thread but I am trying to find timely info for this ever broadening category.

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BarrySimon615
Pa Bear
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Reged: 03/01/04

Loc: New Orleans, LA
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: AlbertoJ]
      #5604568 - 01/04/13 11:11 AM

Quote:

Refractors new available under $6K:
-Takahashi TSA-120.
-Takahashi TSA-102.
-TEC-140.
-Tele Vue NP-101.
-Tele Vue 85.




AlbertoJ is one who is sticking to the guidelines originally stated - basically Top 10 Current/Modern Refractors. How do we define modern? Modern is very subjective, and is it that important if an old design is still being produced (which keeps it current). Several scopes have been mentioned here in this thread which are no longer current in the respect that they are not available new - FS102, FS128, FS152, AP Traveler, Celestron C102 or fluorite 102, to name a few. Yes, they do come up on occasion on the used market, but not as new scopes.

Perhaps a better way to load the horses in the gate so to speak would be to keep one of the parameters as "Current" but to create size categories. Another variable would be - can be ordered today, and in my hands in one year or less. Price becomes irrelevant in respect to inclusion on the list, but price should be listed to let the prospective buyer decide what he or she can afford. Finally references should be specified so that the claim of superiority can be checked out - for example, put a link to a thread or threads or review that back up the claim of "Top 10". So for example, the basic outline would be something like"

Top Telescopes by Size -

8" and up -

Telescope size, brand, cost, wait time - cite references/reviews

6 inches to 7.999 inches

Telescope size, brand, cost, wait time - cite references/reviews

5 inches to 5.999 inches

(as above)

4 inches to 4.999 inches

(as above)

Under 4 inches

(as above)

In short there are a lot of good scopes out there and based upon all variables, different scopes are suited best for different people for different reasons. Give the buyer information that is relevant and let him decide what is important.

Barry Simon


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astro_baby
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 06/17/08

Loc: United Kingdom
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BarrySimon615]
      #5605363 - 01/04/13 06:47 PM

Surely you'd have to put the TAL 100 RS in there as an achromat at a great price. Ok its not as glam as some but its a pretty amazing frac for the money. Not sure you dould call it modern as its a bit of an style scope in many respects but still being made in Siberia.

Its very well regarded by many folk and mine would be the only scope I would never part with.


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ohioalfa64
sage


Reged: 08/16/12

Loc: Ohio (NW)
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: astro_baby]
      #5605384 - 01/04/13 06:59 PM

I like Barry's standards for attempting to segment the refractor field. Then I completely disagree with Astro Baby as emotion, and lack of exposure to other product governs his decision. I realize it is hard to be pragmatic if your experience is limited. But, if a,top 10 can be created by segment (as Barry suggests) then that would be a fairly largely inclusive field. Not every scope made in Siberia or Mongolia would likely make it, but that is not unexpected.

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Doug D.
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/23/05

Loc: Virginia
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: ohioalfa64]
      #5605895 - 01/05/13 01:15 AM

Only relatively few made thus far, but I think the AP 140 EDF deserves consideration for inclusion on such a list. I think it was in 6k territory when introduced...?

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catboat
professor emeritus
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Reged: 12/01/09

Loc: Maine
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: ohioalfa64]
      #5606060 - 01/05/13 06:21 AM

Quote:

I like Barry's standards for attempting to segment the refractor field. Then I completely disagree with Astro Baby as emotion, and lack of exposure to other product governs his decision. I realize it is hard to be pragmatic if your experience is limited. But, if a,top 10 can be created by segment (as Barry suggests) then that would be a fairly largely inclusive field. Not every scope made in Siberia or Mongolia would likely make it, but that is not unexpected.




Ohioalpha64,

Hmm… We're not in Kansas anymore. The TAL may be made in Siberia, but TAL products are well known in the UK. With a modicum of ingenuity, you could get one in the U.S. more easily than many of the refractors that are likely to be noted in this thread.
Given the open criteria stated by the OP (and value is one), I see no reason why the TAL should not be mentioned here. As for astrobaby's judgement being governed by "lack of exposure", perhaps you know this to be the case, but I don't.
Emotion?… LOL on a refractor thread.


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ohioalfa64
sage


Reged: 08/16/12

Loc: Ohio (NW)
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: catboat]
      #5606096 - 01/05/13 08:07 AM

Ha! I accept your position and stand corrected.

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RAKing
Postmaster
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Reged: 12/28/07

Loc: West of the D.C. Nebula
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: AlbertoJ]
      #5606174 - 01/05/13 09:25 AM

Quote:

Refractors new available under $6K:
-Takahashi TSA-120.
-Takahashi TSA-102.
-TEC-140.
-Tele Vue NP-101.
-Tele Vue 85.




This is a good start and I would add my TMB 130SS and the TMB 92 to the list.

My old Tak TOA 130 was under $6k when I owned it, but the price has gone over the limit now.

Cheers,

Ron


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Scott99
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 05/10/07

Loc: New England
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: RAKing]
      #5606470 - 01/05/13 12:08 PM

Over $6,000, I would immediately pick the large LZOS and Tak refractors, 12 inches and up. I'll take one of each of the 10 most expensive scopes from those companies. Thank you!

should give me a nice collection of 12-20 inch apos. Let's start with one of these, and then take a look at what LZOS has to offer:

http://www.takahashi-europe.com/en/FET-300.php


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BillP
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Scott99]
      #5606597 - 01/05/13 01:09 PM

My candidates (11), based on achieved long term reputation/popularity/availability as commented by others across forums (ordered by aperture)...

CR6 Achromat
TOA-150
TEC-140 APO
TOA-130 APO
AP 130-class APOs
ST120 Achromat
EON 120
TSA-102 APO
NP-101 APO
TV-85
80mm EDs+APOs (all of them collectively)

Of course, some of these have multiple brandings.


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Napersky
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 01/27/10

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BillP]
      #5606702 - 01/05/13 02:08 PM

Best Overall Value in Top Grade Refractor available new Today would be the 6" LZOS APM for $3,999.

This is an unbelievable deal.

Mark


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johnnyha
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Reged: 11/12/06

Loc: Sherman Oaks, CA
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Napersky]
      #5606747 - 01/05/13 02:41 PM

Quote:

Best Overall Value in Top Grade Refractor available new Today would be the 6" LZOS APM for $3,999.

This is an unbelievable deal .

Mark



Actually the 6" LZOS doublet lens in cel is considerably more expensive than the 6" ED APO doublet..


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Red Shift
super member


Reged: 11/09/11

Loc: Bloomfield, New Jersey, USA
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BarrySimon615]
      #5606842 - 01/05/13 03:38 PM

[quote
AlbertoJ is one who is sticking to the guidelines originally stated - basically Top 10 Current/Modern Refractors. How do we define modern? Modern is very subjective, and is it that important if an old design is still being produced (which keeps it current). Several scopes have been mentioned here in this thread which are no longer current in the respect that they are not available new - FS102, FS128, FS152, AP Traveler, Celestron C102 or fluorite 102, to name a few. Yes, they do come up on occasion on the used market, but not as new scopes.

Perhaps a better way to load the horses in the gate so to speak would be to keep one of the parameters as "Current" but to create size categories. Another variable would be - can be ordered today, and in my hands in one year or less. Price becomes irrelevant in respect to inclusion on the list, but price should be listed to let the prospective buyer decide what he or she can afford. Finally references should be specified so that the claim of superiority can be checked out - for example, put a link to a thread or threads or review that back up the claim of "Top 10". So for example, the basic outline would be something like"

Top Telescopes by Size -

8" and up -

Telescope size, brand, cost, wait time - cite references/reviews

6 inches to 7.999 inches

Telescope size, brand, cost, wait time - cite references/reviews

5 inches to 5.999 inches

(as above)

4 inches to 4.999 inches

(as above)

Under 4 inches

(as above)

In short there are a lot of good scopes out there and based upon all variables, different scopes are suited best for different people for different reasons. Give the buyer information that is relevant and let him decide what is important.

Barry Simon




Barry,
I like YOUR idea......
categories
"Currently available as new", and "Previously manufactured -no longer available as new"
and
The objective size category.

Good thinking on your part.....
This will make this thread or new threads SO much better for
categorizing the info into a usable format.


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kepler22
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Red Shift]
      #5606928 - 01/05/13 04:33 PM



THE POUND FOR POUND KING THE MASTER OF MASTERS THE TOA-150


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MAURITS
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: kepler22]
      #5606988 - 01/05/13 05:24 PM



Kepler22, welcome on board with your first post and picture!

That's the way I think about the TOA-150


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fmasa
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors *DELETED* new [Re: Kevin Barker]
      #5607002 - 01/05/13 05:36 PM

Post deleted by fmasa

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zjc26138
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: MAURITS]
      #5607018 - 01/05/13 05:45 PM

We live in a time where there are many great refractors so I imagine the list could extend well beyond 10.

Here is my short top refractors that I have owned or used (in no particular order).

- TOA 130
- TEC 140
- TMB 130SS
- Orion ED80
- Meade 102ED


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astro_baby
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: fmasa]
      #5607092 - 01/05/13 06:15 PM

I'd accept the driticism that my experience with fracs is perhaps more limited than some, the TAL isnt the only frac I have used or owned by the way. But to reduce to a list of of 10 scopes without regard to much except the very best optically is, to my mind, a somewhat limited way of looking at the 10 top scopes. There are other fine scopes on a more limited budget some of WOs stuff, the skywatcher APOs of various hues, maybe even the Meade 5000 series. Had one on test and hated it but they are popular.

I was only pointing out tha top 10 should be perhaps a mix of various prices and types otherwise it becomes a 10 greatest cars of all times that features only Ferraris, where the model T ford, the Bentley LeMans or the E type Jaguar get left out because thay cant exceed 150mph ....see what I mean.

You seem to imagine the TAL is the only scope I have ever used, far from it, its just one of the nicest I own, optically its perhaps the best achromat around today and I am not alone in that opinion, ok it wont compete with some of the more exotic stuff but its a frac for everyman rather than a scope for a more limited, some might say elite, market. i own two vintage Unitrons and nice as they are as they are in near mint complete with all accessories I'd still sell them before I sold the TAL because beatiful as they are they are hideous to actually use.

I was more drawing attention to perhaps a widerselection in the choice or else You may as well include the Yerkes Observatory as that would count as current or modern, at least as far as I know its still in use

Edited by astro_baby (01/05/13 06:20 PM)


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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: zjc26138]
      #5607108 - 01/05/13 06:24 PM

In my mind, top 10 means the 10 best regardless of cost.

Many years ago I was trying to decide about a certain telescope and ask Uncle Rod for his thoughts. He said something that has stuck with me ever since...

"There's a big difference between a great deal and a great telescope."

An ED-80 is a good telescope and a good deal but it has significant flaws that prevent it from being a great telescope. On the other hand, the 80 mm Lomo triplets seem to be great telescopes.

10 is a small number when one considers how many truly outstanding refractors there are. Top 10 ought to be the cream.

Jon


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BarrySimon615
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: astro_baby]
      #5607114 - 01/05/13 06:28 PM

When I looked at today's new posts on this thread it first concerned me that some scopes were now on the list that are admittedly pretty lightweight when it comes to image quality. Case in point - the Orion ST120. Then it struck me that the title of this thread can be taken several different ways. Like a previous thread either here or at "Classic Telescopes" about most influential telescopes where the lowly 60 mm refractor was listed by many as the one scope, no matter the maker, that influenced them. So if we take the title that way or maybe consider that it could mean "Which current scopes have been the best sellers?", we can certainly include several others like the Orion (or other labeled ST 120) or various short tube 80 mm scopes or the 6" f/8 achromat from several sources including Celestron and SkyWatcher.

The Orion ST 120 that I now have is my second one. How does it compare to some of my best scopes? Not even close, particularly when magnification is increased, but value for price is undeniably good. Probably been in Orion's catalog longer than any other refractor they currently sell. So looking at the original question another way, we can come up with a completely different set of answers.

Barry Simon


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BRCoz
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BarrySimon615]
      #5607182 - 01/05/13 07:27 PM

APM\TMB 130 1200mm and FS102.

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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BarrySimon615]
      #5607552 - 01/05/13 11:39 PM

If you go with best sellers, I would guess the Celestron Powerseeker 70 has out sold every scope listed so far.

Jon


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astro_baby
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5607789 - 01/06/13 05:41 AM

Jon,

Thats was kind of where I was heading. i saw top 10 as a combination of quality, value, best sellers etc so to me top 10 would be a mix of scopes covering a range of values.

Very few of us would be expert enough to state the top 10 in pure optical quality and even fewer of us would have had the funds to own all of the top 10 if we were just talking about the very flat out best that could be acheived which would mean having had the opportunity to own and evaluate what would almost certainly be the most expensive refractors out there.

If I were reading top 10 as simply the best views irresepctive if cost then the Yerkes Observatory frac HAS to be on the list because no matter what optical fects it might exhibit a 40" frac is going to show an awful lit more detail than any other fac pretty much regardless of how exotic. In pure power terms you'd just be looking at a list of the worlds current largest refracting scopes

Perhaps the OP would like to refine the question.


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PhilCo126
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: astro_baby]
      #5607813 - 01/06/13 06:16 AM

In fact we should split this into at least Achro (visual use) and Apo-refractors (astrophotography use)

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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: astro_baby]
      #5607830 - 01/06/13 07:07 AM

Quote:

Jon,

Thats was kind of where I was heading. i saw top 10 as a combination of quality, value, best sellers etc so to me top 10 would be a mix of scopes covering a range of values.




To my mind, there are just too many subjective factors to ever come to a consensus that is meaningful. Certainly Orion has sold far more 100mm f/6 than TeleVue has sold NP-101's, but a list of the top 10 refractors would only have room for one and while the 100mm F/6 is cheap and represents a good value, its primary redeeming attribute is its cost, it not a great telescope, Somebody without much knowledge from the outside reading this list of "top" 10 refractors could easily be mislead or confused.

Concerning the Yerkes, I would just say it's not modern by any stretch of the imagination and in comparison to other 40 inch telescopes it has serious optical liabilities...

We could each have our own list but few of us have actually sufficient experience with enough scopes to a make a list based on experience. My own list would be short even though I have owned probably 50 different refractors.

William Optics 80 mm F/7 FD. codesigned with TMB, this is a top performer though it would have to give up its place to the Lomo triplets...

NP-101. It's the most perfect scope I have owned. It is capable of providing highest quality views at all magnifications within reach of a 4 inch scope.

Jon


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RogerRZ
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5607846 - 01/06/13 07:45 AM

Quote:



NP-101. It's the most perfect scope I have owned. It is capable of providing highest quality views at all magnifications within reach of a 4 inch scope.

Jon




Not to mention, available. The best scope in the world is no good to anybody if you can't buy it...


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MooEy
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: RogerRZ]
      #5607919 - 01/06/13 09:04 AM

no love for fsq-106?

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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: MooEy]
      #5607936 - 01/06/13 09:19 AM

Quote:

no love for fsq-106?




The FSQ-106 seems to be more of an astrograph, it has a much wider imaging circle than the NP-101. It is about 5 lbs heavier. I have never looked through one, it's not clear from what I read it the FSQ has the same level of color correction as the NP-101.

I think the NP-101 is a better choice for visual, the FSQ is better for A-P. I could be wrong.

Jon


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astro_baby
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5608505 - 01/06/13 02:16 PM

Jon, pleeeeeeease dont say stuff like the NP101 is the most perfect scope ever ....it just eggs me on to buy one and I really do need some shoes and food quite soon

I have been shopping for a really excellent frac for ages but nothing so far is what I want, its either waaaaay too expensive, unavailable, too big to mount, supplier known to be a bit iffy etc etc.

I was in the market for a good APO for about about 6 months but never saw anything that really took me and shook me. It was mostly kind of nice but a lot of cash and for alot of cash I want something more than 'kind of nice'



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Doug D.
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: astro_baby]
      #5608612 - 01/06/13 03:08 PM

A TEC 110 FL Eclipse is definitely kind of nice - and maybe fits your criteria?

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BillP
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5609104 - 01/06/13 07:34 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Jon,

Thats was kind of where I was heading. i saw top 10 as a combination of quality, value, best sellers etc so to me top 10 would be a mix of scopes covering a range of values.




To my mind, there are just too many subjective factors to ever come to a consensus that is meaningful. Certainly Orion has sold far more 100mm f/6 than TeleVue has sold NP-101's, but a list of the top 10 refractors would only have room for one and while the 100mm F/6 is cheap and represents a good value, its primary redeeming attribute is its cost, it not a great telescope, Somebody without much knowledge from the outside reading this list of "top" 10 refractors could easily be mislead or confused.




I don't know if it is worth trying to frame every post in a way that someone with zero knowledge would not be confused. Being confused is a good thing as it means one needs to become more educated on a topic. So let that state of mind be what it is, a red light that one needs more information and then for them to go get it.

I would argue from the other standpoint on what should be considered: "Top 10 Current Refractors". Most popular (sales) means something. Someone trying to assert that there is some quality thing with a particular obscure telescope has a lot of subjectiveness in there. Some people will point out a Feathertouch focuser. Certainly a highly precision item. But does it make a scope without it fall from the list? If one tried to say the top 10 with best optical quality, well who has all the bench tests for all the production models of each line to prove that indeed what may be popularly construed as highest quality optic indeed really is in fact so high? No one. So in the end, it's all subjective based on the likes and dislikes of each person who made a list. So no one set of rhymes and reasons.

btw, if someone takes a great scope like the 120ST and tried to use it INCORRECTLY, then not the scope's fault...just the users. I put that scope on my list because so very many people like it for what it is, a wonderful low power refractive scanner of the heavens. Run around the heavens with it at 50x and not much difference one gonna see between it an a multi-thousand dollar extremely short focus APO. Same thing when one tried to put an ultra-short focal ratio APO up against a more traditional long focus APO for high magnification planetary observing...the short focal ratio one should not be on the list because it is being used in a way that is not where its strength is? Top 10 of anything always will be quite a subjective journey. The beauty of this exercise though is that it tells a story about each observer. Therein lies the value


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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BillP]
      #5609509 - 01/07/13 12:10 AM

Quote:


I would argue from the other standpoint on what should be considered: "Top 10 Current Refractors". Most popular (sales) means something.




If the criteria is "most popular" then that is easily stated, the TOP 10 Best Selling, The 10 most popular... the 10 Best Values...

Quote:

btw, if someone takes a great scope like the 120ST and tried to use it INCORRECTLY, then not the scope's fault...just the users. I put that scope on my list because so very many people like it for what it is, a wonderful low power refractive scanner of the heavens. Run around the heavens with it at 50x and not much difference one gonna see between it an a multi-thousand dollar extremely short focus APO. Same thing when one tried to put an ultra-short focal ratio APO up against a more traditional long focus APO for high magnification planetary observing...the short focal ratio one should not be on the list because it is being used in a way that is not where its strength is?




Having owned a number of scope very similar to the ST-120, I have a hard time thinking of them as "Great Scopes." They are a lot of scope for the money and fun to use but as Uncle Rod pointed out to me a long time ago, a "Great Value/Good deal" and a "Great Scope" are two different things.

I own two 100mm class refractors, an Orion 100mm F/6 and the NP-101. The Orion does a good job at low powers, that's why I keep it, it is hampered at high magnifications but it still enjoyable. Scanning the heavens at low magnifications, there is a significant difference between the two scopes, the NP-101 optics are sharper in the center, probably because they are just better, and the field is flat. With a top quality eyepiece like the 31mm Nagler, stars are as sharp at the edge as they are at the center...

And at the higher magnifications, unlike almost every other fast focal ratio apo, the NP-101 has an objective is actually slow, probably slower than the typical 4 inch F/8-F/9, (I have seen F/12 suggested), it just has an optimized field flattener, apparently with a second ED element. So it has superior color correction to the doublets, comparable to the best triplets and offers comparable views of the planets at high powers. It's strength is in the breadth of it's capabilities, providing "top notch/world class/cutting edge" views at all magnifications within the reach of a 4 inch telescope.

There are a lot of good things to be said about scopes like the ST-80 and the Celestron 6 inch F/8 achromats, influential, enjoyable, affordable..

Bottom line: When I think of the top 10 quarterbacks in the history of the NFL, I think of how well they played, not whether they did a good job considering their low salary.

Jon


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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: astro_baby]
      #5609526 - 01/07/13 12:26 AM

Quote:

Jon, pleeeeeeease dont say stuff like the NP101 is the most perfect scope ever ....it just eggs me on to buy one and I really do need some shoes and food quite soon

I have been shopping for a really excellent frac for ages but nothing so far is what I want, its either waaaaay too expensive, unavailable, too big to mount, supplier known to be a bit iffy etc etc.

I was in the market for a good APO for about about 6 months but never saw anything that really took me and shook me. It was mostly kind of nice but a lot of cash and for alot of cash I want something more than 'kind of nice'






Hi:

I am not going to claim that that the NP-101 is the most perfect scope ever because in the final analysis, it's just telescope like many others, it just has everything pretty much dialed in...

I just kind of stumbled into owning an NP-101. I had a Astro-Tech AT-102ED, used it a lot, I had a lot of fun with it, recognized it's short comings and decided I wanted a top quality apo. I knew Tom Trusock had written a review praising the NP-101 so when one became available at a very good price that was local, I just bought it. The whole flat field thing and the great color correction even out of focus were all new ground for me... that first night under dark skies with the 31mm Nagler... it was a new experience.

There are lots of good scopes out there, having owned one now for 2 or 3 years, I think the NP-101 offers a combination that is hard to beat...

I am a big believer that just about every scope has something to be enjoyed, that with the right attitude, I can enjoy and learn using most any scope. And I do...

The difficulty I have with this thread is simply that, enjoyable as they are, I have a hard time thinking of a scope like my ST-80 or the 100mm F/6 achromat as a potential "top 10 scope". There is pleasure to be had looking through them but as much fun as I have with them, their primary virtue is not what they can do but what they cost.

And if cost is the primary factor, in my experience, the top 10 refractors are all Newtonian reflectors.

Jon


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Paul G
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5609833 - 01/07/13 09:49 AM

Quote:

I am a big believer that just about every scope has something to be enjoyed, that with the right attitude, I can enjoy and learn using most any scope.

And if cost is the primary factor, in my experience, the top 10 refractors are all Newtonian reflectors.
Jon




+1 to both.


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BarrySimon615
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: astro_baby]
      #5610632 - 01/07/13 05:51 PM

Quote:

I'd accept the criticism that my experience with fracs is perhaps more limited than some, the TAL isnt the only frac I have used or owned by the way.




I don't know if it was you that came up with the abbreviation "frac", but whoever it was ought to be........well, they ought to be something! What a grating word! At least with the abbreviations Mak and Newt, we are taking the first few letters of the instrument type, it makes sense. With "frac" we are mining the middle of the word, kind of like if we said "sut" for Maksutov and "ton" for newtonian. "Hey I got a new "sut" last week but this puppy sure takes a long time to settle down!

Maybe instead of "frac" you could just put a little finger pressure on a few more keys and call it a "refractor"!

Seriously, call it what you want but I will always spell it out and even add a bit more - like triplet apo refractor, ED doublet refractor or fluorite apo refractor......but that's just me.

Barry Simon


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la200o
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BarrySimon615]
      #5610645 - 01/07/13 06:08 PM

I hate "frac"!

Bill


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mikey cee
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: la200o]
      #5610912 - 01/07/13 09:08 PM

Quote:

I hate "frac"!

Bill


Yeah I detest it also! Sounds like you're refering to "Frics" twin brother! Mike

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Smack
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: la200o]
      #5610969 - 01/07/13 09:45 PM

Quote:

I hate "frac"!

Bill




Ditto.


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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: mikey cee]
      #5610986 - 01/07/13 09:52 PM

Quote:

Quote:

I hate "frac"!

Bill


Yeah I detest it also! Sounds like you're refering to "Frics" twin brother! Mike




Here's the deal:

Maksutov-Cassegrains are have long focal lengths but are short squat telescopes. Therefore a short, squat nickname is most appropriate, i.e. a MAK...

Newtonians can be quite long but in general they are also short and squat, not quite like a MAK though, a short nickname is again appropriate: Newt... a little slimmer than the MAK but not much.

Refractors are just the opposite, typically longer and thinner than one would expect. Thus the while a nickname is appropriate, it will not be a short, squat nickname but rather a long, flowing name. I am sure others will have better ideas than me but here's one:

Refinancator... Pronounced re-fi-nanc-a-tor.

Or maybe, refractator.. pronounced re-frac-ta-tor... (rhymes with a potatoer)

A small, fast refractator would be a "tator.

Jon

Edited by Jon Isaacs (01/07/13 10:25 PM)


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KWB
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5611309 - 01/08/13 02:14 AM

Hopefully now the terminolgy lessons as to referencing a particular telescopic design are out of the way, and we can now head back to the thread topic of the Top 10 refractors,whatever criteria that may be based on.


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csrlice12
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: KWB]
      #5611586 - 01/08/13 09:36 AM

The Celestron 102/4" F9.8 achromat. Not a fancy apochromat, not an expensive OTA, comes in many flavors and colors; comes on various mounts...but there's thousands of these things out there in various configurations, and thousands more being sold every year. It may not be the best scope in the world, but it is obviously one of the most popular....or at least the most affordable.....and for the most part, there's been little complaint about these scopes except for their length.

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Jayo
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5613298 - 01/09/13 08:41 AM

Alot of great, comparable scopes in today's market. I've owned the AP 130 EDF, AP Stowaway(F5), FSQ-ED. They were all spectacular. I've recently downsized from the heavy stuff(1 & 3)...meaning lighter weight mount and portability. My new, lighter TEC 110FL is equally spectacular to the above. And the mechanics are top notch. There are bigger and better on the market, but I'm at the stage where small is nice !

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BarrySimon615
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5613340 - 01/09/13 09:08 AM Attachment (22 downloads)

Quote:

The Celestron 102/4" F9.8 achromat. Not a fancy apochromat, not an expensive OTA, comes in many flavors and colors; comes on various mounts...but there's thousands of these things out there in various configurations, and thousands more being sold every year.




I think you have to drill down and be specific about just what Celestron 102 mm (4") f/9.8 telescope you are talking about. When first offered in approximately the mid 80's this scope was typically a rebranded Vixen achromat available (usually) on a Super Polaris Vixen mount. It's stable mate was the excellent Vixen fluorite 4" refractor. Later Celestron 4" refractors, similar in size, were sourced from China. Many have reported that they are not as good. Certainly the focuser was not as nice as what was originally supplied thru Vixen. The mount was also a clone of the Vixen Super Polaris/Great Polaris series, and at least at the beginning, were not as good as the Vixen mounts they were trying to copy.

Imitation is flattering, but ultimately not quite the same thing as the real thing. Anyone wanting an older Vixen sourced 4" f/9.8 should do the research to make sure they are getting the genuine article.

I have one, mine has been customized, but under all of the frill it is a genuine Celestron/Vixen SPC 102. While I have a better scope (AP Star 12ED), there is a soft spot in my heart for my "Purple Planet Eater" and I do not think I will ever sell it.

Barry Simon


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teelgul
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jayo]
      #5614902 - 01/10/13 04:13 AM

Quote:

Alot of great, comparable scopes in today's market. I've owned the AP 130 EDF, AP Stowaway(F5), FSQ-ED. They were all spectacular. I've recently downsized from the heavy stuff(1 & 3)...meaning lighter weight mount and portability. My new, lighter TEC 110FL is equally spectacular to the above. And the mechanics are top notch. There are bigger and better on the market, but I'm at the stage where small is nice !


absolutely so !small ,portable ,high quality stuff wins in the end. Ordered the TEC a couple of weeks back !

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Fomalhaut
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Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: teelgul]
      #5614924 - 01/10/13 06:04 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Alot of great, comparable scopes in today's market. I've owned the AP 130 EDF, AP Stowaway(F5), FSQ-ED. They were all spectacular. I've recently downsized from the heavy stuff(1 & 3)...meaning lighter weight mount and portability. My new, lighter TEC 110FL is equally spectacular to the above. And the mechanics are top notch. There are bigger and better on the market, but I'm at the stage where small is nice !



Absolutely so !small ,portable ,high quality stuff wins in the end. Ordered the TEC a couple of weeks back !




+1

Chris


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BarrySimon615
Pa Bear
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Reged: 03/01/04

Loc: New Orleans, LA
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Fomalhaut]
      #5615068 - 01/10/13 08:53 AM

I too agree with the posts immediately above this one. Having had a lumbar laminectomy for a herniated disc at the young age of 19, I have to be forever careful to guard my back. Now that I am 60, the axiom is keep it at a size that I can handle. From late 1992 up until about 2004 my largest rig was a Brandon 130 mm f/8 apo with guide scope (33 lb. payload) set up on a Losmandy G11 mount. I found that I was using it rarely as it was a pain to take out and set up. I am sure most of you know the feeling when you tense up your lower back to walk that equatorial mount thru the door? For me it was too much of a risk given my surgical history.

Enter the Orion 100ED back in 2004 when I sold the Brandon 130, here was a lightweight tube assembly that I could get one hand around the tube and get outside. It worked well on the Vixen Super Polaris mount, so the Losmandy G11 was sold too. Now my back was safe! Quality fever did hit and an unexpected bonus check helped too. I bought up and got a Tak TSA 102. One could try to argue that it couldn't possibly be more than marginally better than the Orion 100ED; not so, based on my testing. As incredible as this may sound but as good as the 100ED is, the TSA 102 really blows it out of the water. You would have to look thru the two of them side by side to see the big difference.

I would still have the TSA 102 had it not been the need to sell it to help pay for a wedding (my daughter's), so it sold. I did keep the Tak EM 10 mount that I had for it but an opportunity to trade that mount for an AP Star 12ED tube assembly and Losmandy GM8 mount presented itself. So that is what I have now and no, I am not back in the same situation that I was before - the AP Star 12ED is about 1/2 the weight of the Brandon 130 f/8 tube assembly with guidescope and the GM8 mount is a lot less hefty than the G11. I think I am pretty much at my max comfortable weight in terms of wanting to move around various components so I will not succumb to aperture fever as I want to avoid hernia fever!

Barry Simon


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Paul G
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Reged: 05/08/03

Loc: Freedonia
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BarrySimon615]
      #5615141 - 01/10/13 09:50 AM

Love the color!

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Jayo
super member


Reged: 02/03/07

Loc: Quebec City
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: teelgul]
      #5616646 - 01/11/13 03:52 AM

absolutely so !small ,portable ,high quality stuff wins in the end. Ordered the TEC a couple of weeks back !

Teegul...you'll love the focuser 'collet'. Oh...very good focuser too. Smooth, no slip and Zero backlash. As good (and bigger) than the Feathertouch on my Stowaway.


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Jayo
super member


Reged: 02/03/07

Loc: Quebec City
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: BarrySimon615]
      #5616653 - 01/11/13 04:00 AM

Quote:

I too agree with the posts immediately above this one. Having had a lumbar laminectomy for a herniated disc at the young age of 19, I have to be forever careful to guard my back. Now that I am 60, the axiom is keep it at a size that I can handle. .... I think I am pretty much at my max comfortable weight in terms of wanting to move around various components so I will not succumb to aperture fever as I want to avoid hernia fever!

Barry
I'm near 60 myself. Sold my G11 also. I've never had a herniated disc, but as a Chiropractor, I know that any fatigue caused by lugging excessive weights...can certainly disrupt any back. Including mine. Down-sizing allows us to continue enjoying and sharing this marvelous passion.

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teelgul
sage


Reged: 09/02/11

Loc: Australia
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: Jayo]
      #5616761 - 01/11/13 07:22 AM

From all the users feedack and reviews it seems the TEC110 has a fantastic combination,of Optics,size,mechanics ,aperture and f ratio and thus makes it the kind of scope which many of us will ultimately zero in as the best compromise to maximise the joy of viewing .i am looking forward,to getting it.hope many more quality scope makers take note of this combination .

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dhaval
professor emeritus
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Reged: 07/21/08

Loc: Round Rock, TX
Re: Top 10 Current or Modern Refractors new [Re: teelgul]
      #5616903 - 01/11/13 09:24 AM

The TEC is by far and away the best scope that I have owned. I primarily do AP and don't have a permanent set up, yet. However, the TEC110FL and the G11 set up as quickly as any other scope that I have used, most of the time a lot quicker compared with the other scopes that I have owned. I attribute that to the size of the scope, the way it is bundled with the other accessories and the weight of the scope. Given that it is such a fast scope, for AP, it is amazing because now I can a) take longer subs and b) capture more detail the same amount of time. If I were just visual, I would have loved the FOV (that is my only regret sometimes when imaging, I can't get the necessary image scale - but I don't generally complain about such trivial stuff!). The last thing that I have to mention about the TEC is the fact that Yuri is just too helpful. All my questions have been promptly answered and he stands by his products. I think, that in itself would make me rank TEC as one of the best telescope manufacturer.

Dhaval


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