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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

Pages: 1
Djarum
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 03/12/09

Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor new
      #3661262 - 03/05/10 10:16 AM

For those who own one, how portable is this scope? I'm looking at maybe getting something like this and put on an Alt/az mount(like the skywatcher). I have an f/5 reflector, but the tube diameter is almost 7 inches, and the EQ mount is not as portable as I would like.

I'm thinking that a refractor like this would give me similar view but slightly more portability.

I also like that I might actually be able to sit while viewing with this scope.


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skyward_eyes
Vendor - Sky-Watcher USA
*****

Reged: 12/12/06

Loc: California
Re: Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor new [Re: Djarum]
      #3661379 - 03/05/10 11:12 AM

I owned an Orion 120 f/8.3 for a while (exactly the same scope as you are looking at), it was a great scope and portability wasnt really to bad, no where near the Celestron C-6R monster.

The deep sky views were awesome in the 120, clarity was great. Hmmmm starting to miss that scope now...


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RalphK
super member


Reged: 02/07/08

Loc: Outside Philly
Re: Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor new [Re: skyward_eyes]
      #3662943 - 03/06/10 02:10 AM

Djarum, not sure of the specs on your current scope but the 120/8.3 is surely both longer at 40+ inches and heavier at 12.5 lbs. so only you can decide if this is "portable". Also, if you buy an alt/az mount it is essential that you get one with slow motion controls in order to use this scope. I have the Skywatcher AZ4 which pairs wonderfully with my ST80 but lack of slo-mo controls makes it virtually useless for the 120/8.3. All this being said, I am extremely
happy with this scope and I think you would be too.


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Teal'c
Indeed
*****

Reged: 08/02/05

Re: Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor new [Re: RalphK]
      #3663127 - 03/06/10 08:00 AM

I use one (Celestron XLT 120) on a Giro III and it's very manageable.

The comment above suggesting that slo-mo controls are essential, is subject. Using a sturdy Alt/az and avoiding ridiculous high powers, can make this combination very usable.


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Djarum
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 03/12/09

Re: Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor new [Re: Teal'c]
      #3663236 - 03/06/10 09:37 AM

My 5 inch reflector is about 10lbs. But its "bulky" it terms of size. Its about 6.5 inches in diameter. The length of the scope doesn't bother me. I had thought about the 120ST, but the latter seems like a better all round scope, at least from the reports I've read.

As far as slo-mo controls, I am used to the equatorial for higher power. In saying that, I don't do a ton of planetary stuff. I have bad seeing most of the time, and I haven't been all that impressed with what I've seen in my 5 inch reflector when it comes to planets. I have been happy with what I can see with open clusters, even some of the fainter ones.

I have to carry my scope about 75 yards to observe outside my apartment. Many nights I just wish I could set up quick and get a good quick view for an hour or so. I've thought about more apeture, suck as a dob, but I really don't have the room for it.


Edited by Djarum (03/06/10 09:41 AM)


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russell23
Post Laureate
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Reged: 05/31/09

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor new [Re: Teal'c]
      #3663243 - 03/06/10 09:41 AM

I have a Celestron 120mm f/8.3 XLT that I use on a Williams Optics EZ mount. I consider it very portable. The EZ mount handles it with no problems. I observe in my backyard because I live in the country, so it is 3 trips to be completely set up -- EZ mount, 120mm OTA, eyepieces.

That is grab and go IMO.

I would agree regarding the slo-mo controls. It depends - the EZ mount lacks slo-mo and I've never considered that a problem with this scope.

Dave


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Djarum
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 03/12/09

Re: Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor new [Re: russell23]
      #3663248 - 03/06/10 09:44 AM

Quote:

I have a Celestron 120mm f/8.3 XLT that I use on a Williams Optics EZ mount. I consider it very portable. The EZ mount handles it with no problems. I observe in my backyard because I live in the country, so it is 3 trips to be completely set up -- EZ mount, 120mm OTA, eyepieces.

That is grab and go IMO.

I would agree regarding the slo-mo controls. It depends - the EZ mount lacks slo-mo and I've never considered that a problem with this scope.

Dave




Right now it takes me 4 trips. The OTA, the counter weights and tray, the mount, and EP case and binoculars.

I was considering the skyview pro alt/az. I guess at high powers, one just "nudges"?

Also, is it comfortable to use while sitting in a chair?


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kbenware
newbie


Reged: 02/21/09

Re: Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor new [Re: Djarum]
      #3688166 - 03/18/10 12:34 AM

Hi Djarum. I have owned this scope for 8 years now and would hardly consider it a grab and go configuration. Although I have upgraded the focuser to a GSO Crayford (because the stock focuser is just too sloppy and frustrating), it is still close to its original weight. The weight coupled with the length make this scope pretty hefty and cumbersome for what I would deem "grab and go." For instance, when I put this scope on my Astro-Tech voyager mount, which I have outfitted with an 8" extension tube, I find that the slow motion controls of this 20# rated mount slip when increasing the altitude. This is the case even though I carefully balance, tighten the clutch, and use Baader Hyperion, 2" Eyepieces to counter the weight of the objective. This scope is just too objective heavy. Additionally, although I have an 8" extension on this mount and use the tripod fully extended, I find that as I move to within 15 deg of Zenith, the eyepiece is just too low to the ground where I cannot view without crouching over or kneeling on the ground (I'm only 6'2"). This would necessitate the use of an observing chair to view comfortably. When I think of grab and go, I don't want to to bring every piece of equipment that I own nor do I want to make more than one trip to lug equipment. I would recommend a short focal length ED refractor as a grab go. They are short, lightweight, cool down more quickly, and enable you to have a more comfortable viewing position with most mounts and without the need to lug additional equipment (i.e. chair). Hope this helps. Good luck.

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Djarum
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 03/12/09

Re: Synta 120mm f8.3 refractor [Re: kbenware]
      #3688573 - 03/18/10 08:48 AM

Thanks for the honest post.

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