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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
New Ed Ting review of the AP 175
      #5873685 - 05/20/13 12:53 PM

I have always enjoyed Ed's reviews and here is a new one of the AP 175.

http://www.scopereviews.com/page1ag.html


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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5873739 - 05/20/13 01:14 PM

The challenging double that made them decide to stop Zeta Bootis which he says is 0.8 arcseconds is as I have it a much more challenging 0.49 arcseconds. They should have kept going down the list....

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t.r.
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/14/08

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5873760 - 05/20/13 01:23 PM

Good read, thanks for posting. "Its only competitors for this crown come from AP's other, smaller refractors, and perhaps one of the larger Takahashis like the FCT150"...I'm pretty sure the TEC 180FL I looked through could give it a run for its money though!

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Kent10
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/08/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: t.r.]
      #5873810 - 05/20/13 01:54 PM

I was thinking the same thing about the Tec 180Fl. I have the Tec 160Fl and hope it is close. Would love to compare.

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Lynnblac
super member
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Reged: 04/06/09

Loc: Arizona
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5873817 - 05/20/13 01:56 PM

Observed Saturn this weekend with a AP175. I agree with Ed's review, an excellent scope.

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Eddgie
Postmaster
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Reged: 02/01/06

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5873878 - 05/20/13 02:33 PM

I like Ed's reviews.

I totally disagreed with his C9.25 review because based on his lofty praise, I bought one, and it was not at all satisfying to use.

But I do like his reviews in general and have passed some time reading them.

Not surprised that he would like the AP 175. Of course the optical quality would be outstanding.

But I doubt that it would be the best view ever. There are many larger, higher quality refractors out there that would do as well or better, I am sure.

There was a time when I really craved a big AP refractor, but Roland Christen talked me out of it. I said planetary performance was near the top of my list and he convinced me instead to go for a 10" custom reflector (which is what he uses.... LOL)

If I were into wide field imaging though, I would be willing to bet that this scope is perhaps at the very very very top of what a large refractor is capable of doing.

Most of the magic in this scope is not to be found by putting an eyepiece into it.


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Kent10
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/08/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Eddgie]
      #5873904 - 05/20/13 02:53 PM

Speaking of planetary performance, I have viewed Saturn each night and it is very nice. I can easily see the Cassini Division and various shades of yellow on the planet. I have only viewed from my neighborhood back yard and so the seeing may not always be the best with all the homes. I also think I see the moons quite easily. I keep wondering how much more there is to see through my Tec 160Fl if I do get better seeing, perhaps I should take the scope out of the city. What more can I expect to see with a 6.3" refractor? I realize I might have to be patient and wait for seeing to clear and I have only viewed for a few minutes at a time both mono and in a bino. Thanks.

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t.r.
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Reged: 02/14/08

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Kent10]
      #5873944 - 05/20/13 03:11 PM

Well, even according to TEC (Yuri) and at least one CN'er, the difference on planetary between the TEC140 and TEC160 came down to slightly sharper clarity of Cassini's...and not much else.

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Kent10
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/08/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: t.r.]
      #5873974 - 05/20/13 03:25 PM

Right. Thanks t.r. I saw where Yuri said that. So I need a large SCT or reflector to have a chance at seeing much more, like detail in the rings?

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Mike Clemens
Frozen to Eyepiece
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Reged: 11/26/05

Loc: Alaska, USA
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Kent10]
      #5873993 - 05/20/13 03:32 PM

From the review
"This is the best refractor I've ever looked through, and a good candidate for the best telescope I've ever seen, period."

"it was becoming obvious that the seeing conditions weren't going to allow us to go sub arc-second on this night."

curious combo : )


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vahe
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/27/05

Loc: Houston, Texas
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Mike Clemens]
      #5874088 - 05/20/13 04:04 PM

Not much substance in that review, Ed has written more in depth reviews in the past.

Vahe


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Dwight56
member


Reged: 04/17/10

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Mike Clemens]
      #5874102 - 05/20/13 04:06 PM

I setup my AP 175 at Thunderbird Park last Saturday night that was May 18th at our Anual Saquaro Astronomy Club Public Star party. I had my AP 175 and 9mm Nagler trained on Saturn the whole night and the comments from the people moving through the various scope lines were amusing. There is really a slide underneath, hey this cannot be that good. to Oh My Gosh and so on. Saturn was showing a wealth of detail. Rings stood out real well, the disk was showing some really nice banding. Last thing before teardown we had to out of the park by 10pm was the moon showing all kinds of detail.

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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
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Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Kent10]
      #5874165 - 05/20/13 04:25 PM

I don't think so. Ring detail is highly seeing dependent. More often than not what you want is superior optical quality and moderate aperture (5" to 8") to start picking out ring structure details. Larger instruments are more affected by less than perfect seeing. Obstructed instruments are lower contrast than unobstructed ones.

Ergo, you need a moderately large well figured unobstructed scope for planets. Roland uses a 10 MCT of his won design for planets, it is true...but he's IMAGING them. For visual use, you can't do better than a premium quality big refractor for planetary detail.

- Jim


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Kent10
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/08/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5874193 - 05/20/13 04:32 PM

Great Jim. Thanks. I do enjoy the view of Saturn but I also want more now. So I will keep looking and also look forward to the day I can take the scope to a nicer location. I have been learning about seeing by viewing the moon each night. I saw the Collins, Armstrong and Aldrin craters the other night but only for a couple of minutes. It was easy then but later I could not see them at all. Same with the Plato craterlets. Nearer full moon I could easily see 4 but the last couple of nights I can only barely make out something and that is because I know where to look. It should get easier in the coming days I think.

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johnnyha
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/12/06

Loc: Sherman Oaks, CA
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Kent10]
      #5874208 - 05/20/13 04:42 PM

You cannot really test on a night of bad seeing.

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Mike Clemens
Frozen to Eyepiece
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Reged: 11/26/05

Loc: Alaska, USA
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: johnnyha]
      #5874215 - 05/20/13 04:45 PM

> Ring detail is highly seeing dependent.

I had a 4" TMB with binoviewer, 1.7x corrector and fantastic 8.3mm olympus eyepieces under absolutely 10/10 sustained stable skies ONCE (the only time in 10 yrs I thought - these are absolutely perfectly stable skies) and the ring detail was impressive. I had viewed Saturn Many times before with the same scope but this was one step beyond. I started splitting doubles immediately and noted how I could place secondaries sometimes onto primary 1st diffraction rings and make them look like little pieces of jewelry with stones.


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Kent10
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/08/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: johnnyha]
      #5874234 - 05/20/13 04:56 PM

True. I am just not sure yet what really good seeing is I think. I know really bad seeing and I have had some adequate seeing (I think). But I probably have never experienced really fine seeing and that is what I have to look forward to.

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Sgt
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 12/17/05

Loc: Under the southern horn of the...
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Kent10]
      #5874255 - 05/20/13 05:13 PM

I have read that beyond a certain size, the thermal inertia of a big slab of glass in a triplet become difficult to manage and become a limiter of performance. What is the experience of the big apo people?

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Mike Clemens
Frozen to Eyepiece
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Reged: 11/26/05

Loc: Alaska, USA
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Sgt]
      #5874307 - 05/20/13 05:47 PM

I am sure it would be a problem if you have very limited viewing time, or no chance to thermally accomodate the scope. I have always given my scopes an hour or two outside in their case to come to temp. and I have only seen more and more detail as I have purchased progressively larger refractors. At some point (I say around 175mm), planetary details get markedly easier for my eyes.

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Kent10
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/08/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Mike Clemens]
      #5874484 - 05/20/13 07:15 PM

Quote:

> Ring detail is highly seeing dependent.

I had a 4" TMB with binoviewer, 1.7x corrector and fantastic 8.3mm olympus eyepieces under absolutely 10/10 sustained stable skies ONCE (the only time in 10 yrs I thought - these are absolutely perfectly stable skies) and the ring detail was impressive. I had viewed Saturn Many times before with the same scope but this was one step beyond. I started splitting doubles immediately and noted how I could place secondaries sometimes onto primary 1st diffraction rings and make them look like little pieces of jewelry with stones.




Thanks Mike. I look forward to the day I have great seeing. Right now it is too convenient for me to view from my backyard. I can set up everything in under 5 mins. But when I have more time I will take the scope out somewhere dark and calm I am sure there will be a point where I won't be able to stand the poor seeing any more. It does cool down here pretty fast though because it is dry desert so I hope my Tec 160Fl can keep up.


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bratislav
sage


Reged: 09/07/06

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: vahe]
      #5874578 - 05/20/13 08:20 PM

Quote:

Not much substance in that review, Ed has written more in depth reviews in the past.





Star testing a refractor (even APO) using extrafocal images in polychromatic light is a monumental waste of time.


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
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Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Sgt]
      #5874981 - 05/20/13 11:45 PM

That may well be, but I don't think there are any amateur triplets in existence large enough to put that proposition to the test.

- Jim


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clintwhitman
Caveman
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Reged: 01/01/07

Loc: CALI SoEasyACavemanCanSlewIt
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5875213 - 05/21/13 06:46 AM

Jim I agree with your "refractor being the best"!
Even though it happens only once in awhile. With the right seeing and the 228mm AP triplet refractor. Once you can break 600 power it is a game changer for viewing any of the planets!
I did like Ed's commentary of the way everything gets quiet and you start to breath deeply.
The 4 views I remember most have all been through refractors. Knee buckling views at 5/5 seeing
Jupiter in Robert Provins 7" AP at 500x
Jupiter in John Pons 10" Zeiss, Ganymede Transit at 650 Xs
Mars in The Pearl 9" AP at 720 Xs The Best, held for 1 hour.
Saturn in the Pearl at 750 Xs

(aveman


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t.r.
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/14/08

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5875273 - 05/21/13 07:57 AM

Ya know, the seeing really can't be overstated as the limiting factor for planetary performance regardless of unobstructed aperture used. I have seen for myself, in average seeing a couple of times, where a 5" apo did as well as a 7" apo in side-by-side comparisons, where only the brightness of the planet differentiated the view. Having viewed through 3-7" apos, my most memorable view came from a 4" Genesis refractor while in Seoul, S. Korea. Known for its smog, this too means very stable seeing in the summers there and I had two fantastic sessions, one while viewing intricate micro detail on Jupiter at 260x in the Genesis (it wanted more magnification) and the other while viewing Saturn at opposition in an 8" SCT no less, at 325x...the rings looked grooved like a vinyl record!

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JimP
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 04/22/03

Loc: South Carolina
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5875355 - 05/21/13 09:12 AM

Excellent report. Gorgeous telescope. I'd love to have one but, for the time being, I'll settle for my AP 130 GT.

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Astrojensen
Post Laureate
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Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Bornholm, Denmark
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: t.r.]
      #5875368 - 05/21/13 09:25 AM

Totally true about the seeing. Even in a very small telescope, such as a 2", seeing is the limiting factor from most locations. The images may look relatively sharp on most nights in such a small aperture, but when you look closely, most of the time the micro detail suffers once you get above 50x (not 50x per inch, but just 50x!) and I've had evenings where the image looked GREAT at 50x in my 63mm Zeiss, but once I went to 84x, enough magnification to reveal the smallest lunar/planetary detail the scope can resolve, it has been clear that the seeing was clearly insuficcient to reveal the finest detail.

But once in a while, you get a superb night and the small scope reveal things you never dreamed it could show, suddenly making it crystal clear that even with a 2" scope, seeing is extremely important. And it only gets more important as the aperture increases.

In my country, that super-crisp view of the planets at high magnification is an extremely rare occurrence, but I've had a few moments over the years, sights that remain etched into my brain. Sights that makes you want to crawl into your telescope and live there forever.


Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark


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TG
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/02/06

Loc: Latitude 47
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5875814 - 05/21/13 12:50 PM

Quote:

Ring detail is highly seeing dependent.
- Jim




And seeing is highly altitude dependent. With Saturn this low for northern latitude observers, we can't expect the views we had in the past. I can't today get the views with my 7" apo that I got easily a few years ago with my C9.25 when Saturn was high in the sky. I struggle to go much above 300x on Saturn with the apo when I routinely used 450x with the C9.25.

Tanveer.


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TG
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/02/06

Loc: Latitude 47
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Kent10]
      #5875846 - 05/21/13 01:02 PM

Quote:

Speaking of planetary performance, I have viewed Saturn each night and it is very nice. I can easily see the Cassini Division and various shades of yellow on the planet. I have only viewed from my neighborhood back yard and so the seeing may not always be the best with all the homes. I also think I see the moons quite easily. I keep wondering how much more there is to see through my Tec 160Fl if I do get better seeing, perhaps I should take the scope out of the city. What more can I expect to see with a 6.3" refractor? I realize I might have to be patient and wait for seeing to clear and I have only viewed for a few minutes at a time both mono and in a bino. Thanks.




I've found that the best seeing often occurs right after sunset or in the early morning hours. My best planetary views have been had during these periods. It pays off to rise early and take a peek. As an added bonus, the scope is thoroughly cooled by then (left covered under a tarp to protect from the dew). The early morning, of course, works better before the planet is at opposition.

One hard target to spot is the polar hexagon. I haven't heard anybody report seeing it so far. I've seen the bluish/gray polar cap but couldn't perceive any hexagonal shape. I suspect it will take something like 10/10 seeing with a fairly large aperture to make out unambiguously.

Planetary observation is a game of patience. Try sketching over an hour and so and see how much more you'll notice.


Tanveer.


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TG
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/02/06

Loc: Latitude 47
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Kent10]
      #5875851 - 05/21/13 01:05 PM

Quote:

It was easy then but later I could not see them at all. Same with the Plato craterlets. Nearer full moon I could easily see 4 but the last couple of nights I can only barely make out something and that is because I know where to look. It should get easier in the coming days I think.




The Plato craterlets are hard to spot at any time except full lunar noon and morning/sunset. But even a 4" scope will show you four in good seeing. The Plato area is one of my favorites - try observing Mons Teneriffe near Plato as well. It's rewarding in a variety of illumination angles.

Tanveer.


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Kent10
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/08/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: TG]
      #5875863 - 05/21/13 01:10 PM

Quote:

Quote:

It was easy then but later I could not see them at all. Same with the Plato craterlets. Nearer full moon I could easily see 4 but the last couple of nights I can only barely make out something and that is because I know where to look. It should get easier in the coming days I think.




The Plato craterlets are hard to spot at any time except full lunar noon and morning/sunset. But even a 4" scope will show you four in good seeing. The Plato area is one of my favorites - try observing Mons Teneriffe near Plato as well. It's rewarding in a variety of illumination angles.

Tanveer.




Yes last night I could just barely see the 4. It was tough. It should be easier tonight and the coming days. Thanks for your recommendation of Mons Teneriffe! Will take a look.

Edited by Kent10 (05/21/13 01:31 PM)


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Kent10
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/08/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: TG]
      #5875966 - 05/21/13 01:44 PM

Quote:



I've found that the best seeing often occurs right after sunset or in the early morning hours. My best planetary views have been had during these periods. It pays off to rise early and take a peek. As an added bonus, the scope is thoroughly cooled by then (left covered under a tarp to protect from the dew). The early morning, of course, works better before the planet is at opposition.

One hard target to spot is the polar hexagon. I haven't heard anybody report seeing it so far. I've seen the bluish/gray polar cap but couldn't perceive any hexagonal shape. I suspect it will take something like 10/10 seeing with a fairly large aperture to make out unambiguously.

Planetary observation is a game of patience. Try sketching over an hour and so and see how much more you'll notice.


Tanveer.




Thanks for the suggestions Tanveer. Once I did leave my scope out overnight, covered, and in the morning my objective had frost on the inside. I didn't know at the time if it was frost or an oil leak in my Tec. So I sent it to Yuri and I guess it eventually melted and was frost because he saw nothing wrong. I must have been very unlucky because others have left their scopes out without frost but I am still a little scared to try it again.

Edited by Kent10 (05/21/13 02:06 PM)


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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: TG]
      #5875972 - 05/21/13 01:45 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Ring detail is highly seeing dependent.
- Jim




And seeing is highly altitude dependent. With Saturn this low for northern latitude observers, we can't expect the views we had in the past. I can't today get the views with my 7" apo that I got easily a few years ago with my C9.25 when Saturn was high in the sky. I struggle to go much above 300x on Saturn with the apo when I routinely used 450x with the C9.25.

Tanveer.




Yes this is generally true but not always. Damian Peach took this when Saturn was only 38 degrees up.

http://www.damianpeach.com/sat1213/2013_04_20rgb_dp.jpg


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JimP
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 04/22/03

Loc: South Carolina
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Sgt]
      #5876211 - 05/21/13 03:37 PM

Quote:

I have read that beyond a certain size, the thermal inertia of a big slab of glass in a triplet become difficult to manage and become a limiter of performance. What is the experience of the big apo people?




I have TMB 8" F/9 LZOS and TMB 10" F/9 LZOS triplet apos. I have had no significant problems with cool-down with either scope. In the summer the scopes are in observatories with air conditioning. That keeps the scopes from overheating on hot summer days. I open the observatories at sunset. When the seeing is good here the temperature falls one degree or less per hour. I have had many nights of good seeing where the temperature did not change over 2-3 hours. Neither scope has any problems keeping up with that kind of change in temperature.


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StarDust1
super member


Reged: 08/21/12

Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Astrojensen]
      #5876683 - 05/21/13 06:49 PM

Quote:

that super-crisp view of the planets at high magnification is an extremely rare occurrence, but I've had a few moments over the years, sights that remain etched into my brain. Sights that makes you want to crawl into your telescope and live there forever.


Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark





Thomas, I have had the same experience as you. I still remember the views that I had one night on Saturn, it was rock solid, in the Mewlon 210 at more than 500x. I just wish for one of those moments on Jupiter, then I'm a happy camper


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ValeryD
Vendor (Aries)
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Reged: 11/26/05

Loc: Kherson, Ukraine.
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: t.r.]
      #5877273 - 05/22/13 01:10 AM

Quote:

Well, even according to TEC (Yuri) and at least one CN'er, the difference on planetary between the TEC140 and TEC160 came down to slightly sharper clarity of Cassini's...and not much else.




I think such observations were done at moderate seeing at best. When I compared the views of Saturn between 150mm APO and 180mm APO during very good seeing, the difference was PRINCIPAL.
In a bigger APO I saw all details much better defined, sharper, larger with better color rendition and I saw more details.
High quality aperture rules. Always.


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johnnyha
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/12/06

Loc: Sherman Oaks, CA
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: Kent10]
      #5877281 - 05/22/13 01:18 AM

Quote:

True. I am just not sure yet what really good seeing is I think.


Sorry Kent I meant the Ed Ting review, its difficult to judge a scope with so-so seeing (not that there's any doubt about the quality of the new AP175s). Sounds like there was a good image of Saturn nonetheless.

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mgwhittle
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 08/24/11

Loc: Chattanooga, TN
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: johnnyha]
      #5878229 - 05/22/13 02:42 PM

From what I can see with my 175EDF, is that it is less affected by seeing than other scopes I have owned. I suspect that it's because it's concentrating so much energy into the airy disk and not throwing much out to the diffraction rings. Instead of a blob that dances around when the seeing is bad, you can see the airy disk dancing around, allowing me to split doubles that would only be a mess in other telescopes I own or have owned.

As far as the comments that the magic of this scope is related to imaging more than visual, I disagree. Visually, the contrast is so strong in the 175EDF, I have been able to detect more faint galaxies this spring with it than my C11 set up right next to it under my light polluted skies.


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Paul G
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Reged: 05/08/03

Loc: Freedonia
Re: New Ed Ting review of the AP 175 new [Re: mgwhittle]
      #5879047 - 05/22/13 08:48 PM

Quote:

From what I can see with my 175EDF, is that it is less affected by seeing than other scopes I have owned. I suspect that it's because it's concentrating so much energy into the airy disk and not throwing much out to the diffraction rings. Instead of a blob that dances around when the seeing is bad, you can see the airy disk dancing around, allowing me to split doubles that would only be a mess in other telescopes I own or have owned.

As far as the comments that the magic of this scope is related to imaging more than visual, I disagree. Visually, the contrast is so strong in the 175EDF, I have been able to detect more faint galaxies this spring with it than my C11 set up right next to it under my light polluted skies.




The superb contrast is more important for visual use than it is for imaging since one can boost contrast during image processing. Add to that the fact that the objective is nulled at peak visual wavelength and you have a great visual scope.


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