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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

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JonM
super member


Reged: 07/25/08

Loc: Colorado
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Paul G]
      #6601960 - 06/25/14 09:26 PM

The new TEC focusers do not have any plastic.

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JonM
super member


Reged: 07/25/08

Loc: Colorado
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: mark8888]
      #6601970 - 06/25/14 09:34 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Interesting. TEC's manual for the 160 warns against this and states the part is plastic. The 140 manual states the part is aluminum.




The manual just wasn't updated. The excellent TEC-made focuser is all metal. The FeatherTouch, which hasn't been sold with the TEC for years except by special request, has the plastic part.




Only the Feathertouch focuser with the collet had plastic. The new TEC focuser OR the Feathertouch option with the three screw end peice (which is stil available)are all metal. I ordered the Feathertouch with an AP adapter and end piece that unscrews to accept all of APs 2.7 inch accessories. I think that's the way to go.
If you want the Feathertouch, you order the scope without a focuser for a $600 credit and order what you want from Starlight Instruments. It will screw right on to the TECs tube adapter.


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snommisbor
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 06/15/09

Loc: Cedar Park, TX
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: JonM]
      #6602151 - 06/25/14 11:27 PM

The TEC focuser is great, I love it and have not regretted it once in purchasing new. Think it is really the best deal out there in the 5 inch refractor class. Although I would consider one of the new Stellarvue 130's over the TMB130 as my other option, but then again between those two I would still get the TEC. It will be a lifetime scope and if you ever did decide to sell, I think it would be very little loss in value. They hold up well on the used market.

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Scott99
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 05/10/07

Loc: New England
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6602463 - 06/26/14 08:21 AM

Quote:

Quote:

So we're talking about the current Asian-produced TMB? The extra 2,000 will be for the premium optics of TEC.




Hmmmm ... Pardon me for pushing some buttons here but... I believe my Takahashi is "Asian-produced". And "premium" is simply a nondescript label with no real meaning. For a $2k difference there better be something more substantial than not preferring a source country and a subjective belief in premium.




c'mon now…. the TMB 130 lens was produced in Russia for many years by LZOS, now it's coming from a 3rd party manufacturer in Asia. That is not a slam on Asia or Asia produced scopes, it's simply a fact that they are two completely different telescopes.

And yes, there is a very firm and tangible definition of TEC's premium optics - guaranteed Strehl ratio of 98.4% or higher. Many people don't know what that means or don't care, and that's just fine too. The TMB130SS customers seem happy, it just depends what you're looking for and how much you want to spend.


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Alan French
Night Owl
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Reged: 01/28/05

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Scott99]
      #6602468 - 06/26/14 08:35 AM

I think it's a major plus, and certainly a factor in what I buy, to be able to pick up the phone and talk to the company that actually made the scope. Also TEC (and AP) have Yahoo groups where Yuri (and Roland) are quite happy to answer questions about their products.

Clear skies, Alan


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Paul G
Post Laureate
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Reged: 05/08/03

Loc: Freedonia
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Scott99]
      #6602473 - 06/26/14 08:39 AM

Quote:

And yes, there is a very firm and tangible definition of TEC's premium optics - guaranteed Strehl ratio of 98.4% or higher




Source?


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BillP
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Scott99]
      #6602497 - 06/26/14 08:56 AM

I've had a LZOS optic and was not overly impressed. Same with a LOMO optic. I mean they were good...but nothing to write home about. I've also had as good optics from Japan and China-based manufacture. I fully understand of course how reputations are built. But once built, they often do not remain the same and ride a wave for sometimes decades or more. Bottom line is that reputations are "nice" but nothing to put in the bank as far as I'm concerned. And as far as a guaranteed Strehl ratio, that's all well and good, and nice to see. But again for me that would have to be backed with an individual test report otherwise I chalk it up to marketing. And if it's only in a single wavelength then not something I care much about as my visual range extends further than this. So polychromatic strehl is only thing worthwhile as far as I'm concerned since I don't view through green filters (if that guarantee is for single wavelength, I don't know).

I generally find it nonsensical when the point is brought up about knowing who touched the glass. As a consumer what is important is the reputation of the seller or reseller. So with that it matters little where the glass came from or who touched it. If I can take the scope home, test it myself to assess its capability in the real world, then return it if not up to expectations, then I'm a happy camper Consumers have this capability with almost anything sold out there, as long as they purchase it from a reputable reseller and verify the return and support policy prior to purchase. As easy as that to get world-class customer service and support for any product and a guarantee of an excellently performing optic. So in the end, reputations are nice, but for me not something to put in any bank. TEC puts out good products...so does Tak, Pentax, Tele Vue, TMB, APM, and a host of others that all have premium wares. That being the case from my perspective, country of origins are not a factor in this, buit what more importantly is is considerations relative to the aperture difference, focuser mechanicals difference, weight/size differences, oil vs air preference, cool down differences, and of course the trump card...the cash


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hottr6
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 06/28/09

Loc: 7,500', Magdalena Mtns, NM
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Alan French]
      #6602799 - 06/26/14 12:12 PM

Quote:

When thinking about the price difference, keep in mind that this scope could be a lifetime investment and a instrument that keeps you happy and busy for the rest of your life.



It is interesting to note that most of the TEC140 owners that have written in this thread have moved on to something else. So much for a lifetime instrument, but I guess it was a key point to be made when discussing the purchase with one's partner.


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Alan French
Night Owl
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Reged: 01/28/05

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: hottr6]
      #6602818 - 06/26/14 12:27 PM

There seem to be two segments of telescope owners - those who buy and use a telescope for years, and those who are always looking for something better, something newer, something different, or something larger. So what happens in the future depends on which camp you belong to.

And sometimes it just takes more than one try to get one that proves a perfect fit. All the advice in the world is no substitute for personal experience.

Clear skies, Alan



Edited by Alan French (06/26/14 01:44 PM)


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Phil Cowell
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 05/24/07

Loc: Southern Tier NY
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: hottr6]
      #6602900 - 06/26/14 01:33 PM

Quote:


It is interesting to note that most of the TEC140 owners that have written in this thread have moved on to something else. So much for a lifetime instrument, but I guess it was a key point to be made when discussing the purchase with one's partner.




Not all. I'll be keeping my 140 until they screw the lid on the pine box or sprinkle my ashes over my ex-wife's uber expensive plush carpet, haven't made my mind up which yet.


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BillP
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: hottr6]
      #6602921 - 06/26/14 01:48 PM

Quote:

It is interesting to note that most of the TEC140 owners that have written in this thread have moved on to something else. So much for a lifetime instrument...




Most people fail to realize that in this context "lifetime" does not mean until one dies, but until one changes their preferences and desires. Most people change their preferences and desires throughout their lifetimes. So a lifetime scope is relatively meaningless as that lifetime (for the scope) can end way before that of the individual who purchased it. But your pointing this out shows an excellent point...that one is really fooling themselves when they believe whatever they are purchasing is the last thing.

Edited by BillP (06/26/14 01:51 PM)


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BillP
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Phil Cowell]
      #6602930 - 06/26/14 01:53 PM

Quote:

Quote:


It is interesting to note that most of the TEC140 owners that have written in this thread have moved on to something else. So much for a lifetime instrument, but I guess it was a key point to be made when discussing the purchase with one's partner.




Not all. I'll be keeping my 140 until they screw the lid on the pine box or sprinkle my ashes over my ex-wife's uber expensive plush carpet, haven't made my mind up which yet.




Be careful...as she might then sweep it all up and pour it (i.e. you) onto the objective of that TEC140 then wipe it in circular motions into the optic to make up for what you did to her carpet


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John Anthony
sage
*****

Reged: 04/27/13

Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Alan French]
      #6602939 - 06/26/14 02:00 PM

Quote:

There seem to be two segments of telescope owners - those who buy and use a telescope for years, and those who are always looking for something better, something newer, something different, or something larger. So what happens in the future depends on which camp you belong to.

And sometimes it just takes more than one try to get one that proves a perfect fit. All the advice in the world is no substitute for personal experience.

Clear skies, Alan

Clear skies, Alan




"And sometimes it just takes more than one try to get one that proves a perfect fit"

So true, I sold my TEC 140 because it wasn't the perfect fit for me but was none the less an amazing scope and definitely a scope for a life time. "All the advice in the world is no substitute for personal experience" and everyone will prefer a different experience. While all that is true I still love to read what others have to say, so much great advice and comments over the years on these forums that have made me put sooooooo much more consideration into what I was purchasing and it has always been very rewarding in the end for me. I honestly think that the satisfaction I get from this hobby and the equipment I use is due mostly to being steered in the right direction from these forums.


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Jon_Doh
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/16/11

Loc: On a receiver's back
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: John Anthony]
      #6602963 - 06/26/14 02:17 PM

Nobody EVER owns a TEC 140 .... all you do is hold it for the next generation

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dvb
different Syndrome.
*****

Reged: 06/18/05

Loc: Vancouver, Canada
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Jon_Doh]
      #6603783 - 06/26/14 10:25 PM

Thanks, all, for your comments.

All in all, I think I'll go for the TEC140. My interest is mainly visual. I think I can spread the sting of the purchase price over a several months - I understand it is 20% down, the rest on delivery (from the OPT site), and the TEC will be taking the place of a couple of other scopes I can sell - the SkyWatcher 120ED and the SkyWatcher Quattro 200 f/4 which can contribute to the purchase price.



This will leave me with an excellent Royce 10" on a Teeter STS mount, a Stellarvue ED80 for grab and go, and the TEC for planets and those wonderfully tight stars. After going through many scopes, hopefully a "lifetime" selection.

But, I'll still be looking forward to a look through a TMB130!


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MrGrytt
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 07/28/05

Loc: Upstate Cuomostan
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6603864 - 06/26/14 11:33 PM

Quote:

I've had a LZOS optic and was not overly impressed. Same with a LOMO optic. I mean they were good...but nothing to write home about.




Wow. That's quite a statement. What refractor optics have 'overly' impressed you?

If polychromatic Strehl is what's important to you perhaps you should give the TMB designed 130 f/9.25 a try. It has the highest design polychromatic Strehl of any scope produced today.

The reason I question what you said is that I have several TMB designed LZOS optics, several Astro-Physics refractors and one TEC fluorite refractor and can assure you the LZOS optics don't take a back seat to any of them. Also have a LOMO 80/600 and that is as good as it gets in 80mm.

Actually, the biggest difference I see is that the oil spaced optics hurry up and cool down so you can hurry up and get a heat band on them to keep them from fogging up. Doesn't make a lot of sense, does it? Cool them down and then heat them back up. Never really understood why people think that's a good thing.

Harvey


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darylf96
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 08/28/04

Loc: Danville, California
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6603918 - 06/27/14 12:20 AM

I wanted badly to buy the TMB 130SS a few years ago. There was a waiting list at the time and I decided to hold off. I just bought the Orion Eon 130mm ED F7 air spaced triplet with a 3 inch focuser at a considerably lower price and am very impressed with this scope. You may want to check out the Eon 130.

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BillP
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: MrGrytt]
      #6604167 - 06/27/14 08:26 AM

Quote:

Quote:

I've had a LZOS optic and was not overly impressed. Same with a LOMO optic. I mean they were good...but nothing to write home about.




Wow. That's quite a statement. What refractor optics have 'overly' impressed you? ...and can assure you the LZOS optics don't take a back seat to any of them. Also have a LOMO 80/600 and that is as good as it gets in 80mm.




The TSA-102 I have impresses me. It defies all my attempts when pushing the optic. And it will not show color regardless of the magnification. And as an example...when I masked it to 80mm and did a side-by-side with my 80/600 LOMO at matched magnifications, the LOMO could not keep up. I also had a Chinese 80mmm that the LOMO could not best. However...that said, people have had the TSA where they've had problems. Not a lot, but some have. So there is no production line and QC process that is perfect. None.

Anyway, all that said, LOMO and LZOS of course produce premium-level wares. But my point in all this is that IMO *reputation* is fairly meaningless as far as I'm concerned as there are examples of poor units for every brand. So when doing a purchase, I certainly don't care about the reputation as far as the optic is concerned as banking on a reputation to get a good optic IMO carries a higher risk of disappointment then joy because it means one is not taking due dilligence in the purchase process. I do feel though that reputation can be counted on more realtive to mechanicals and fit/finish. But the optic...just too much going on there for me to trust any reputation. Only a full test report or a field examination for the particular unit has any weight. So that's why I invest my time in making sure the reseller I am purchasing from is very reputable and they have confirmed a return policy that I am comfortable with. Once that is done, there is really no worries about the purchase. And I have found that once the seller knows your interest in the return process...they typcially pay a little more attention to your purchase to ensure that doesn't happen. All-in-all it has worked well for me and I have never had a problem with a return (which I rarely had to do). There are a superb Japanese optics out there...and superb Russian optics...and superb Chinese optics...and superb American optics...and Superb British optics...and superb Hungarian optics...etc.

Edited by BillP (06/27/14 08:31 AM)


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MrGrytt
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 07/28/05

Loc: Upstate Cuomostan
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6604441 - 06/27/14 12:11 PM

Quote:


The TSA-102 I have impresses me. It defies all my attempts when pushing the optic. And it will not show color regardless of the magnification. And as an example...when I masked it to 80mm and did a side-by-side with my 80/600 LOMO at matched magnifications, the LOMO could not keep up.




The TSA-102 is a excellent scope but you are describing a visual comparison of an f/10.2 scope with a f/7.5 scope. The slower focal ratio is a distinct advantage. How would the 80/600 have performed if it was also an f/10.2 scope? I suspect you may have used an 8mm eyepiece on the TSA-102 and a 6mm on the 80/600, or perhaps a 3mm and a 4mm respectively. Perhaps your results involved the eyepieces more than the scopes.

Quote:


I also had a Chinese 80mmm that the LOMO could not best.





Were conditions good enough for that to actually be determined? You can't find out anything unless you are able to push them to the limit, or at least close to the limit. What you're saying makes little sense to me unless there is one single 80/600 lemon out there and you happen to have it. Stranger things have happened though.

Quote:


However...that said, people have had the TSA where they've had problems. Not a lot, but some have. So there is no production line and QC process that is perfect. None.





This is why people who have been around for a while and were familiar with the original TMB line of scopes with the TMB designed LZOS optics considered a "real" TMB to be a scope that had been assembled and tested by Thomas Back. It was a final step of quality assurance and it was worth it to have that assurance. I would not imply that Thomas was perfect but he was pretty darn close.

I don't think it makes sense to compare the production of top line optics to typical production line methods and quality control. From those who make them fast and cheap you can expect a pretty significant sample to sample variation. Sample to sample variation is greatly reduced with the top tier manufacturers.

Harvey


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BillP
Postmaster
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Reged: 11/26/06

Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: MrGrytt]
      #6604545 - 06/27/14 01:32 PM

I conducted extensive enough tests to narrow down the difference to the optic and not the eyepiece (and a year worth of tests). And the differences with the LOMO performance were fairly obvious compared to the Tak on several levels, and subtle compared to the Chinese scope. And yes of course conditions were ripe for comparisons -- I don't conduct compares in marginal conditions. As far as lemons, quite true that this may have been the case. But of course that logic applies to good results as well and perhaps good samples are not representative! And important to note that the presumption that a *premium* scope has less QC variation is completely anecdotal...so again, nothing to bank on.

So the bottom line (for me) is that brand names do not impress. Not at all. The proof is in the testing...and I've had supposed premium brands fail and supposed mass produced just beat the pants off of premiums (as far as the optic performance is concerned). So in the end, it's all the luck of the draw. So if one wants to eliminate that problem, then stop relying on luck and brand presumptions.

At any rate...if folks want to hand their hats on a brand, that's of course perfectly fine. But one must realize that it is not a good scientific or engineering or political ot consumer practice to simply trust without verifying! So where spending my money is concerned, brand means nothing, tested performance means everything.

Edited by BillP (06/27/14 01:37 PM)


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