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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

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stevethatsmyname
sage


Reged: 12/10/09

Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus)
      #3558394 - 01/13/10 02:30 PM

I just noticed these floating around on ebay, and decided to try and find a review... doesn't exist.

The brand name is Barska, I believe it is a chinese company that makes all kinds of sporting optics (scopes, spotting scopes, binoculars, laser sights, etc). They appear to only recently have made an 'ED APO'. A 65 and an 80. They claim it's a triplet, and they are selling the 80 for $484 (with tube, diagonal, focuser, and a 20mm plossl). I havent been around forever, but this is definitely cheaper than any of the ED Doublets i've seen around.

However, considering until now this company has only been known for selling hundreds of different varieties of low-mid end hunting scopes and binos, I'm really not one to trust that it's really on par with the other ED scopes in the same price range.

Anyone heard anything about them?


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Takman
sage


Reged: 02/25/09

Loc: Maple, ON - Canada
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: stevethatsmyname]
      #3558706 - 01/13/10 04:45 PM

I'll spare you the "you get what you pay for" diatribe and say this... For not much more money you can get a reputable refractor telescope, use or even new. Best to avoid potential headaches for the sake of saving a few dollars. Oh wait, didn't I just say I'd spare you the diatribe?

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darkbobb
journeyman


Reged: 07/08/10

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: Takman]
      #4525059 - 04/17/11 08:48 PM

don't be afraid to pay too little; I bought one of these at $400- it came with a nice case-eyepieces were *BLEEP* but I expected that-optics are sharp with NO color-get one you won't regret it

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calypsob
sage
*****

Reged: 04/20/13

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: darkbobb]
      #5980739 - 07/20/13 12:25 AM

I have one and it is the most under rated triplet on the market, they run 383 right not and that is cheaper than some doublets. People complain about the focuser but all you need to do is use an eyeglass screwdriver to tighten the screws down which clamp the focusing axle. the focuser does not pull a dslr very well at zenith but I compensate by pushing the drawtube in and allowing the focuser to gently lower the camera into focus. I have to disagree with darkbobb on the eyepieces, Mine came with a 10-24mm ep and a 6mm plossl. The zoom ep is fully multicoated green and the plossl seems ok, I have never used another so I couldn't tell you. This scope is a true apochromatic triplet. The cell can be removed via a silicone filter wrench and there are indeed 3 elements that make up the objective. The same green coating on the ep is found on the front objective. the aluminum dewshield is built in and very nice. It has a W.O. style foot for mounting the scope but I bought some 90mm clamp rings to mount mine. Color correction is great, when used with a 5x apo barlow you can easily make out the cassini division of saturn with each color in very good focus. I use a hotech field flattener with this scope for imaging, and highly recommend this setup.

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PeterR280
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 05/27/13

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: calypsob]
      #6001438 - 08/01/13 02:38 PM

The optical performance is great. I bought one from Amazon for $368. they have since raised the price. I had a decent quality Crayford focuser with a Celestron C80ED adapter. The focuser on the Barska unscrews from the main tube. There is a 1 inch collar in front of the focuser assembly. The collar holds the small Vixen style mounting plate. The collar unscrews from the main tube (note that the rotation tightening ring unscrews as well, the collar sits in front of the tightening ring). The threads on the main tube are exactly the same as the C80ED. I put on the new 2 speed focuser and it works much better than the stock focuser. it also shortened the OTA by about an inch or so to make it even more compact. There is enough travel. Except for the focuser, the telescope is built very well. It's quite solid.

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dpippel
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 04/05/13

Loc: Desierto de Sonora
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: PeterR280]
      #6001488 - 08/01/13 03:01 PM

I found the focuser on this telescope to be so poor that I returned it to Amazon for a refund. The OTA appears to be well made and it performs well optically, but IMO it's worthless unless the stock focuser is replaced with something usable. Suddenly it's not such a good deal any more. YMMV.

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PeterR280
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 05/27/13

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: dpippel]
      #6001495 - 08/01/13 03:03 PM

Works and looks and performs like a $1,000 scope with the new focuser.

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PeterR280
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 05/27/13

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: PeterR280]
      #6001499 - 08/01/13 03:05 PM

By the way comparison with the C 80ED was very telling. the image control is much better than the C80ED. It's probably the 3 lens design.

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dpippel
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 04/05/13

Loc: Desierto de Sonora
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: PeterR280]
      #6001505 - 08/01/13 03:10 PM

What do you mean by "image control"? I also compared the two instruments side-by-side and saw very little difference between them. If there had been I would have kept the Barska, upgraded the focuser, and sold the C80.

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KWB
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 09/30/06

Loc: Westminster,Co Elev.5400 feet
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) new [Re: PeterR280]
      #6001529 - 08/01/13 03:30 PM

Quote:

By the way comparison with the C 80ED was very telling. the image control is much better than the C80ED. It's probably the 3 lens design.



What exactly do you mean by image control? Is it the visable reduction of observable chromatic abberation?

The C80ED is very well corrected for the visable reduction of observable chromatic abberation IMO and IME. In my viewing of the Moon with the C80ED,it produces a clean,white image,contrasted with deep blacks in the craters. When the sky is stable,Venus shows a very nice white image as well. Jupiter shows none of it to my eye,either.

For this telescope to show "much better" correction in terms of CA,I'd truely be surprised. I've never viewed through an NP-101 or a Tak-78 but those telescopes may well do a more easily noticeable job in controlling this visual abberation if a sharp,highly experienced eye was really looking for it. That wouldn't surprise me. For this Barska telescope to do it,that truely does.


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hfjacinto
I think he's got it!
*****

Reged: 01/12/09

Loc: Land of clouds and LP
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: KWB]
      #6001592 - 08/01/13 04:10 PM

I'm with Kenny on this the 80ed is excellent in controlling chromatic Aberration.

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Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: KWB]
      #6001594 - 08/01/13 04:11 PM

Quote:

Quote:

By the way comparison with the C 80ED was very telling. the image control is much better than the C80ED. It's probably the 3 lens design.



What exactly do you mean by image control? Is it the visable reduction of observable chromatic abberation?

The C80ED is very well corrected for the visable reduction of observable chromatic abberation IMO and IME. In my viewing of the Moon with the C80ED,it produces a clean,white image,contrasted with deep blacks in the craters. When the sky is stable,Venus shows a very nice white image as well. Jupiter shows none of it to my eye,either.

For this telescope to show "much better" correction in terms of CA,I'd truely be surprised. I've never viewed through an NP-101 or a Tak-78 but those telescopes may well do a more easily noticeable job in controlling this visual abberation if a sharp,highly experienced eye was really looking for it. That wouldn't surprise me. For this Barska telescope to do it,that truely does.




Kenny:

I have not had a chance to look through the Barska ED scope, I did own an ED-80 and currently own a WO 80mm F/7 FD Doublet, both of which use the good FPL-53 glass, as well as an NP-101. To my eye, the ED-80 and the WO 80mm F/7 FD have very good color correction with no visible fringing around Venus, I find Venus the most revealing when it comes to chromatic aberration.

The Barska Magnus 80ED appears to be one of the scopes manufactured in Asia, probably by Kunming United. I know the web pages state it is a triplet, I would be interested in knowing if anyone has actually tested the objective with a laser to count the number of reflections?

From I have seen over the years, the Asian 80mm ED with the 560mm focal length are almost always a doublet based on HFK-61, a Chinese glass similar to FPL-51, this would be consistent at this price point. If it were a triplet, it would almost certainly have to be an HFK-61 triplet rather than an FPL-53 triplet, the HFK-61 could provide color correction similar to the C80ED.

Jon


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PeterR280
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 05/27/13

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #6001613 - 08/01/13 04:22 PM

The color control in my C80ED is very good. I may have some problem in the optics, perhaps misalignment or pinched optics. At high magnification on a bright star, the image through the Barska was sharper and cleaner than the C80ED..

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pdxmoon
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 06/27/13

Loc: Oregon
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: PeterR280]
      #6001629 - 08/01/13 04:27 PM

I only have observed La Luna and Saturn with my ED80. Color excellent.

Edited by pdxmoon (08/01/13 04:28 PM)


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Binojunky
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 12/25/10

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: pdxmoon]
      #6001713 - 08/01/13 05:07 PM

Love my C80 ED, for the price its a steal, worth mentioning that a scope touted as a triplet will not mean that its better than a doublet, my Meade 5000 ED 80 triplet was a major let down optics wise,great mechanics but the image went soft above 100x, however my lowly Orion ED80 doublet has a great piece of glass in the front end, the Celestron C80 ED that arrived last week is still being evaluated but it looks just as good,DA.

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PeterR280
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 05/27/13

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: Binojunky]
      #6001722 - 08/01/13 05:12 PM

i am just basing it on what i saw through the C80ED and the Barska.

I had a question. Using a 3mm eyepiece and looking at a bright star with the barska, at focus the star showed a fine diffraction ring fairly close to the star. i had not noticed that in other telescopes. is that normal?


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Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: PeterR280]
      #6001743 - 08/01/13 05:25 PM

Quote:

i am just basing it on what i saw through the C80ED and the Barska.

I had a question. Using a 3mm eyepiece and looking at a bright star with the barska, at focus the star showed a fine diffraction ring fairly close to the star. i had not noticed that in other telescopes. is that normal?




The Airy disk and diffraction ring(s) are normal if the seeing is sufficiently stable. They are easier to see in smaller scope since they are larger. The size of the Airy disk and diffraction rings is inversely proportional to the aperture as well as to the exit pupil. With the 3mm, the magnification is 187x with an exit pupil of 0.43mm.

If that were a 10 inch, it would have required about 600x to see the ring structure in the same way, that takes some good seeing.

I would be interested in the laser test, shine a laser through the objective and see how many bright spots you see, those are glass surfaces.

Jon


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: stevethatsmyname]
      #6001900 - 08/01/13 06:53 PM

Hmm...seems to me like that's not such a great deal while Astronomers without Borders is selling Celestron C80 EDs for $349.

Regards,

Jim


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PeterR280
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 05/27/13

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6001918 - 08/01/13 07:00 PM

I bought the C80ED also

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PeterR280
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 05/27/13

Re: Cheapest 'ED APO' yet? (Barska Magnus) [Re: PeterR280]
      #6001945 - 08/01/13 07:11 PM

I went on a bargain shopping spree. I bought the C102 GT for $59. (great scope regardless of money), the C80ED for $349 and the Barska 80ED for $368. I'm keeping the C102 and the Barska. I may give the C80ED as a gift to a nephew. image are very good in all of them. All of these purchases were some sort of a rebellious move in anticipation of the AP130GT that's supposed to come this month. AP hasn't sent shipping notice yet. I've been waiting 9+ years.

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