Return to the Cloudy Nights Telescope Reviews home pageAstronomics discounts for Cloudy Nights members
Get a Cloudy Nights T-Shirt Submit a Review / Article

Click here if you are having trouble logging into the forums

Privacy Policy | Please read our Terms of Service | Signup and Troubleshooting FAQ | Problems? PM a Red or a Green Gu uh, User

Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

Pages: 1 | 2 | (show all)
GOLGO13
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 11/05/05

Loc: St. Louis area
Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new
      #5709753 - 03/02/13 11:33 PM

I finally had a clear night since acquiring my Televue 85 (sorry for anyone close to St. Louis). Tonight was a shoot out between it and my William Optics 80mm FD Apo. The WO 80 is a conversion of the Zenithstar 80mm achro to a FPL53 doublet. It was called the "apo-grade" where you swap out the lens and also get a 2 speed focuser attachment. The Lens is co-designed by the late Thomas M Back. I've had the the WO 80 for about 6 years and it has been a great grab and go.

The Televue 85 I have is an older model with a single speed R&P. It has a very small chip/nick on the lens 1mm by 2mm...but it seems that didn't make any difference tonight.

I'll go through a few points below and compare/contrast.

1) Optics. The WO star test has always been pretty good. But it isn't perfect on both sides. Still, it gives some awesome images and is pretty good. However, the TV 85's star test was certainly better. Especially on one side of focus where the WO is a little less defined. Winner: TV 85
2) Focusers. The WO focuser is a 2 speed rotatable crawford. Having the two speed feature is quite nice and was a plus for the WO 80. However, the WO 80 doesn't like heavy eyepieces or binoviewers. The TV 85's R&P is very smooth and strong. I think it could handle just about anything you throw at it. However, not having a 2 speed does hurt. Here I will give the slight edge to the TV85, but I think I may consider getting the feathertouch upgrade at some point (unless there is some sort of 2 speed attachment).
3) Color Correction. Both scopes were pretty close on color correction. It's pretty hard to say which one was better. I'd almost guess that they are using similar coatings. Both are F7 doublets. Maybe the TV85 was slightly better, but I think both did very good.
4) General observing. I focused mostly on Jupiter tonight, but also observed the Double cluster and the Orion Nebula (and some bright stars for star tests). I used all kinds of magnifications ranging from 24x to 180x. For Jupiter I found the images to be pretty close between the two. I felt the TV 85 had the edge at just about every object. A little sharper and a little more contrast. I think Jupiter was the one that showed the most difference. The TV 85 provided the sharpest image and most pinpoint stars.
5) Portability. The WO 85 is quite a bit more portable...but part of that is due to the fact that it requires a 2 inch extension (because of the apo-grade changed the scope from 480mm focal length to 555. This is also handy for situations where you need extra in-focus. The TV85 is longer, but still quite portable. WO 80 wins this one easy. It would be a better airplane scope.
6) Build quality. Both scopes are well made, but the TV 85 seems to be much more solid. I think the WO 80 looks a little better in terms of aesthetics, but the TV 85 also is very pretty. But for build quality I'd go with the TV 85. This scope has been through a lot from what I can tell with it's history...and it still is giving great images.


In my opinion the WO 80 is 85-90% of the TV 85. I think the quality control of the TV scopes would be higher on average. The star test really showed the difference and I think it could be seen in the observations as well. However, if I were buying one of these new, it would be hard to justify getting the TV 85 at 2000ish. I think the WO cost me $750 which came with a soft case and a 2 inch diagonal. The WO is more portable if you were taking it on a plane often. But, I will be keeping the TV 85 and selling the WO. Money is a bit tight and I may get a few upgrades for this one sometime.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Mark9473
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/21/05

Loc: 51N 4E
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: GOLGO13]
      #5709925 - 03/03/13 04:28 AM

Interesting comparison, thanks for posting that.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
la200o
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 09/09/08

Loc: SE Michigan, USA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: Mark9473]
      #5710058 - 03/03/13 07:49 AM

Nice comparison. I'm a real fan of TV scopes (and ep's), but you're right, there's quite a difference in price, and I hope the smaller TV doublets don't go the way of the discontinued TV 102.

Thanks for the review!

Bill


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
lisure
journeyman


Reged: 11/11/11

Loc: beijing
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: Mark9473]
      #5710123 - 03/03/13 08:29 AM

TV85 is a good scope,i very admire this design of Al naglar.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
tomchris
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/22/10

Loc: Connecticut, U.S.A.
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: lisure]
      #5711204 - 03/03/13 06:42 PM

Thanks for the review from another Tele Vue fan. The 85 has always seen the most time from all the scopes I've owned. I just enjoy using it due the combination of sharpness in viewing and my general perception of its built quality.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Kutno
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 08/17/09

Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: tomchris]
      #5711376 - 03/03/13 08:14 PM

Quote:

Thanks for the review from another Tele Vue fan. The 85 has always seen the most time from all the scopes I've owned. I just enjoy using it due the combination of sharpness in viewing and my general perception of its built quality.




Al Nagler hosted a Tele Vue 85, at a star party held last fall at Central Park, in New York City. It was trained on the Moon, when I first arrived, and the images it delivered were superb. An Ethos sat in its star diagonal. The combination was amazing!


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff Gardner
member


Reged: 09/12/11

Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: lisure]
      #5714125 - 03/05/13 10:27 AM Attachment (78 downloads)

Quote:

TV85 is a good scope,i very admire this design of Al naglar.



+1, I have owned my TV-85 since 1998 and will never part with it. The scope has been all over the country and never failed to provide a pleasant experience. Here is a picture from my trip to Hawaii this summer to enjoy the Venus transit


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
kenrenard
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/13/12

Loc: Dunmore, PA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: Jeff Gardner]
      #5714244 - 03/05/13 11:29 AM

Jeff,
May I ask about the Solar filter you are using with the 85? Thanks

Ken


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
la200o
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 09/09/08

Loc: SE Michigan, USA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5714313 - 03/05/13 12:06 PM

Looks like a SolarMax 40 to me.

Bill


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff Gardner
member


Reged: 09/12/11

Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5714398 - 03/05/13 12:49 PM

Quote:

Jeff,
May I ask about the Solar filter you are using with the 85? Thanks

Ken



Bill is correct, it's a 40mm Solarmax.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
kenrenard
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/13/12

Loc: Dunmore, PA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: Jeff Gardner]
      #5714426 - 03/05/13 01:01 PM

Thank You Both.

Ken


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: GOLGO13]
      #5715878 - 03/06/13 06:48 AM

Quote:

3) Color Correction. Both scopes were pretty close on color correction. It's pretty hard to say which one was better. I'd almost guess that they are using similar coatings. Both are F7 doublets. Maybe the TV85 was slightly better, but I think both did very good.




A few thoughts:

Color correction is in the glass, not in the coatings. Your WO 80mm Zenith Star is based on FPL-53, that's about the best out there. The TeleVue is unknown but I think most assume it to be FPL-53. Since both are similar focal ratio, both should have very similar correction though if the designs were exactly scaled, the smaller scope should have better correction.

- I have owned a William Optics Megrez II FD for several years and outside of the focuser, been very happy with the scope. When Terrence McAdams was originally selling this scope on Astromart with full disclosure, I thought long and hard about it and even corresponded with him concerning the scope. In the end, it came down to the slightly smaller aperture versus somewhat more compact scope I already owned. Owning an NP-101 already, the more compact, slightly shorter focal length 80mm made more sense.

Jon


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
GOLGO13
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 11/05/05

Loc: St. Louis area
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5716149 - 03/06/13 10:40 AM

I think that makes sense Jon. Both are good scopes. As I have noticed in this hobby, you can usually get 90% of a capability for 1/2 or 1/3 the cost. I do think at $1000 used the tv85 would be a great deal. I have seen a few go for that used lately.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: GOLGO13]
      #5716358 - 03/06/13 01:10 PM

Quote:

I think that makes sense Jon. Both are good scopes. As I have noticed in this hobby, you can usually get 90% of a capability for 1/2 or 1/3 the cost. I do think at $1000 used the tv85 would be a great deal. I have seen a few go for that used lately.




Honestly, I wonder about the 90% from an optical standpoint... the difference would seem to be due to the aperture rather than the quality of the optics. Mechanically, the build of the TV-85 is more robust and the focuser is certainly more reliable.

Jon


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
GOLGO13
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 11/05/05

Loc: St. Louis area
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5717359 - 03/06/13 09:56 PM

well...at least my scope the optics were clearly better in the televue. Meaning, the star test on the televue was equal on both sides a looked great. The 80mm wasn't the same on both sides, but close. Certainly not bad, but not as good. Again, we're talking two scopes here and my star testing.

I think most people have good opinions of WO scopes..but i don't think they are quite on the level of the very top folks. At least that's the vibe I get. But, they are priced pretty good. At least they were at the time I got mine.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
timmbottoni
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/25/05

Loc: W Chicago suburbs, IL USA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: GOLGO13]
      #5717455 - 03/06/13 10:43 PM

To me, the biggest appeal to WO scopes is that they represent a really good value for my money. I'm willing to not have perfect, or a name like TeleVue on my scope if I can save 50%, as long as it's "good enough" for my use.

But each has to decide what they can afford, and what level of perfection they are willing to pay for.

Timm


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
GOLGO13
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 11/05/05

Loc: St. Louis area
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: timmbottoni]
      #5717519 - 03/06/13 11:31 PM

Sometimes more than 50%...I'd say my 80mm was %70 cheaper than the TV85 new 6 years ago when I got it. That makes it a pretty easy choice to me. If I had the money I'd go for the better scope, but I usually don't have that much to spend on a scope.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: GOLGO13]
      #5717826 - 03/07/13 07:32 AM

Quote:

well...at least my scope the optics were clearly better in the televue. Meaning, the star test on the televue was equal on both sides a looked great. The 80mm wasn't the same on both sides, but close. Certainly not bad, but not as good. Again, we're talking two scopes here and my star testing.





Roland Christen: Notes on Star Testing Refractors

"Every Apo lens I have ever star tested, even ones that tested close to 1/20 wave P-V, shows different inside and outside patterns of interference. This is normal...

The real test of an optic is not so much how the diffraction pattern looks outside of focus, rather, how much extraneous junk is floating around a star when it is in focus."

Jon


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
GOLGO13
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 11/05/05

Loc: St. Louis area
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5717851 - 03/07/13 07:50 AM

Well that is interesting. But that also supports my observations between the two scopes. The in-focus stars seemed a little sharper in the TV85. And that was more evident during the bright star testing.

While there probably isn't a huge difference, I suppose it could make the difference between seeing some fine details on an object.

Probably similar to mirrors. I've been tempted to keep my 10 inch dob and just upgrade the mirror to a top mirror maker.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Televue 85 vs WO Zenithstar 80mm FD Apo [Re: GOLGO13]
      #5717977 - 03/07/13 09:29 AM

Quote:

Well that is interesting. But that also supports my observations between the two scopes. The in-focus stars seemed a little sharper in the TV85. And that was more evident during the bright star testing.




I guess I will have to hook with a TV-85 and see what I think. I would want to make the comparison with both scopes having 2 speed focusers, getting a sharp focus with a single speed is getting a bit difficult for these old eyes. I can't really do it with the NP-101, I have to use the two speed.

Jon


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Pages: 1 | 2 | (show all)


Extra information
27 registered and 46 anonymous users are browsing this forum.

Moderator:  FirstSight, panhard, star drop, dr.who 

Print Thread

Forum Permissions
      You cannot start new topics
      You cannot reply to topics
      HTML is disabled
      UBBCode is enabled


Thread views: 2251

Jump to

CN Forums Home


Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics