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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

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dvb
different Syndrome.
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Reged: 06/18/05

Loc: Vancouver, Canada
TEC140 or TMB130
      #6600258 - 06/24/14 10:22 PM

Last month I had a chance to use use a TEC140 on Saturn. Seeing was very wobbly, but the Cassini Division was clear at 75x (Ethos 13).

I was impressed enough to lose my mind and consider buying one. Cost, with rings and case, about $6,400.00 + shipping extra

But, then a CN buddy (you know who you are ) mentioned the TMB130, rings and case at $4,130.00, shipping included.

That's pretty significant difference in price (about $2,500).

Sure there are some differences - 10mm aperture, oil vs. air spaced, but, a the end of the night, is there a real visual or imaging difference?


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Peter in Reno
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6600296 - 06/24/14 10:37 PM

There is a nice used TEC 140 with rings, dovetail and soft case at Astro-Mart:

http://www.astromart.com/classifieds/details.asp?classified_id=858940

Asking price is $4800 and no waiting.

I bought my TEC 140 APO used and have not regretted one bit.

Peter


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Mickey_C
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6600309 - 06/24/14 10:43 PM

I am scared to say anything... and perhaps my experience was anecdotal... but I feel compelled to tell you any way.

I bought a APM TMB/LZOS, 5 years ago. It was a major purchase for me. I had sold my Tak FC125, due to the weight. They had a LW version of the TMB available, and the one in particular I had shipped APM/Markus was proud to tell me had the highest strehl rating of any scope they'd imported to the USA yet.

The clouds set in upon arrival, and I had to wait to use the scope. On first use, I noticed light scatter. Significant light scatter. Stray reflections galore. It was horrifying. I then carefully did what I should have done day one, and inspected the inside of the tube with a flashlight.

Lo and behold the entire system holding the baffles and the lens cell together in the OTA was nothing but three long pieces of all-thread, spaced with hex nuts screwed on them. Not a bit of it was painted. And I was no longer surprised at the weight, which was more than I anticipated.

When I contacted APM I was told this was normal, it was fine, and shouldn't be causing a problem. Keep in mind I paid to import this scope.

Like I said this is probably anecdotal, I can't imagine them shipping scopes like this as common. But nevertheless it HAPPENED TO ME.


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Mike Clemens
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 *DELETED* new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6600415 - 06/24/14 11:40 PM

Post deleted by Mike Clemens

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jrcrillyAdministrator
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mike Clemens]
      #6600432 - 06/24/14 11:50 PM

It's probably worth noting that APM had nothing to do with designing or producing either the TMB130SS or the TEC140 - so experiences with APM telescopes don't really apply here.

I owned a TMB130SS and have also spent considerable time looking through local TEC140 telescopes. I believe it would take a real purist to notice a performance difference. Not saying there isn't one, but I decided not to pay for it. I wound up with a TOA-130 in the end, which did offer a performance boost for imaging.


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dvb
different Syndrome.
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Reged: 06/18/05

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Peter in Reno]
      #6600482 - 06/25/14 12:31 AM

Quote:

There is a nice used TEC 140 with rings, dovetail and soft case at Astro-Mart:

http://www.astromart.com/classifieds/details.asp?classified_id=858940

Asking price is $4800 and no waiting.

I bought my TEC 140 APO used and have not regretted one bit.

Peter




If I lived closer to CT, I'd probably jump on that, but living in the Pacific NW (and in Canada), it's less attractive. Darn!


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Mickey_C
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #6600605 - 06/25/14 02:27 AM

Quote:

It's probably worth noting that APM had nothing to do with designing or producing either the TMB130SS or the TEC140 - so experiences with APM telescopes don't really apply here.

I owned a TMB130SS and have also spent considerable time looking through local TEC140 telescopes. I believe it would take a real purist to notice a performance difference. Not saying there isn't one, but I decided not to pay for it. I wound up with a TOA-130 in the end, which did offer a performance boost for imaging.




I have no idea what the relationship is of the two companies now, but the TMB I bought from them was apparently built by APM.

If you'd like I could dig up very detailed information as I still have the pictures and everything. Even the mails. It wasn't a good situation, and Thomas Back would do nothing for me at all, since it was his design scope, but he didn't build it himself.

If this is all out of place, I'll just delete it - but I've never gotten that type of treatment out of a telescope manufacturer before or since. I still feel the disappointment - that telescope was over $5,000 and I took a huge hit unloading it.

It's not something I'll be forgetting.


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Stelios
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6600632 - 06/25/14 02:59 AM

Hold a second. Didn't Thomas Back die in 2007? You mentioned he would do nothing for you for a scope that you bought 5 years ago. Er, obviously not.

Did you mean Markus Ludes? Or was the scope bought 8 or more years ago?

I'm curious because I've nothing but superlatives to say about my own APM/TMB 115 which I've owned almost 5 years as well. A few weeks ago I had it on Mars at 267x (3mm setting of Nagler 3-6 Zoom) delivering stunning images.


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BillP
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6600801 - 06/25/14 08:24 AM

Quote:

Sure there are some differences - 10mm aperture, oil vs. air spaced, but, a the end of the night, is there a real visual or imaging difference?




I would say no...not for visual anyway. You get about 16% more light gathering from the 140 over the 130. This is inconsequential for visual IME. Resolution gain is only 8%. Both scopes produce under 1 arcsec resolution so you are covered for the vast majority of evening seeing from typical locations. To bring the difference between the two down to smaller instrument, the gain a 140 has over a 130 is about the same gain a 102mm has over a 95mm scope. So in that context, probably easier to understand how little the difference is.

From a theoretical standpoint, the oil spaced 140 might cool a little faster, especially if the air spaces are significant in the 130. But as far as a real measured test, I have not come across any in my readings. Color correction on both scopes is excellent. Looking at the diagrams of the design criteria appeaars the 130 is a hair better...but academic any difference is so small. So all that is left really is mechanicals and how they may differ and the old oil vs air debate - which is not resolvable so either you are not bothered by oil or you are so a personal preference.

All-in-all, given how close the two apertures are, and the weight/size savings, and certainly the cost savings, I'd opt for the 130.


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RAKing
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6600806 - 06/25/14 08:28 AM

Quote:

Last month I had a chance to use use a TEC140 on Saturn. Seeing was very wobbly, but the Cassini Division was clear at 75x (Ethos 13).

I was impressed enough to lose my mind and consider buying one. Cost, with rings and case, about $6,400.00 + shipping extra

But, then a CN buddy (you know who you are ) mentioned the TMB130, rings and case at $4,130.00, shipping included.

That's pretty significant difference in price (about $2,500).

Sure there are some differences - 10mm aperture, oil vs. air spaced, but, a the end of the night, is there a real visual or imaging difference?




There is a 10mm difference in aperture.

I have owned both the TEC 140 and the TMB 130SS. If both are equipped with the magnificent FT 3545 focuser then the mechanical quality is the same to me and aperture is the only difference.

It was very hard for me to see the tiny increase in brightness with the 140 and I cannot say if you would see it or not. Both scopes do a great job with pin point stars and colors across the FOV.

I sold my TMB to a fellow CN'er and I hope he is still as happy with it as I was. I just recently let my TEC 140 go (back issues) and miss both of those scopes a lot.

My .02,

Ron


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NHRob
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: RAKing]
      #6600841 - 06/25/14 09:00 AM

If they are within < $1000 of each other I'd get the Tak140. Otherwise the TMB130SS would be my choice. I've owned both but, not together.
I once compared my TEC140 against a TMB130 CNC (LZOS glass), side by side.
We were viewing Saturn and M42 quite a bit. The optics were comparable in quality, IMO. There was a slight difference in brightness but, unless they were side-by-side I'd have a hard time noticing it unless I was looking for it.
This convinced me that I could be happy with either a 140 or 130mm apo aperture for visual.


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Mickey_C
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Stelios]
      #6600917 - 06/25/14 10:06 AM

Quote:

Hold a second. Didn't Thomas Back die in 2007? You mentioned he would do nothing for you for a scope that you bought 5 years ago. Er, obviously not.

Did you mean Markus Ludes? Or was the scope bought 8 or more years ago?

I'm curious because I've nothing but superlatives to say about my own APM/TMB 115 which I've owned almost 5 years as well. A few weeks ago I had it on Mars at 267x (3mm setting of Nagler 3-6 Zoom) delivering stunning images.




My bad - first off, I didn't realize he had died. I wouldn't have said anything had I known.

I bought my scope in May 2007, my five years was just off the cuff last night - I hadn't realized it was longer than that. I looked it up this morning. My last email from Mr. Back was in July, 2007, and he informed me that he only designed my scope, but was not responsible for the build quality, which was indeed Markus at APM. I sold the scope on a-mart for nearly a 2K hit, as I revealed all the issues, and stated that it needed an ATM'er to rebuild it, either replacing the all-thread or blackening it all (I was not up to the task).

I didn't realize he was in ill health when I contacted him. I am sorry for dredging this up - it's really tragic that he died so young, and my sympathies and condolences for his loved ones. In consideration of that such a small financial loss is meaningless.

Feeling now about 2" tall, I'll just exit stage left..



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Alan French
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Reged: 01/28/05

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6600942 - 06/25/14 10:23 AM

I'd pick the TEC 140.
Oil spaced for quicker cool down.
Essentially the same weight (19 lbs versus 18.7 for the TMB).
Yes, it is a modest increase in aperture, but on some objects it will be noticeable (based on my comparison of an AP130 to an AP140).
Yuri is in Colorado, so you can directly deal with the maker if there are issues (although this is unlikely) or if you just have questions.
But, in the end, perhaps your choice would be best dictated by your financial comfort with the prices.

Clear skies, Alan


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ken svp120
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/19/04

Loc: Ohio
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6600954 - 06/25/14 10:30 AM

This goes back a ways and I think I've relayed the story before but a visitor to our local club who had a TMB spent a little time one evening observing through my TEC140 and proceeded to make the switch. If he is still browsing these forums, perhaps he can provide you more detail. So not only is my personal preference the TEC140 but I have first hand knowledge of an experienced observer making the choice between the two. If there is one used on Amart I would jump on it - assuming condition of course.

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Paul G
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6600971 - 06/25/14 10:39 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Hold a second. Didn't Thomas Back die in 2007? You mentioned he would do nothing for you for a scope that you bought 5 years ago. Er, obviously not.

Did you mean Markus Ludes? Or was the scope bought 8 or more years ago?

I'm curious because I've nothing but superlatives to say about my own APM/TMB 115 which I've owned almost 5 years as well. A few weeks ago I had it on Mars at 267x (3mm setting of Nagler 3-6 Zoom) delivering stunning images.




My bad - first off, I didn't realize he had died. I wouldn't have said anything had I known.

I bought my scope in May 2007, my five years was just off the cuff last night - I hadn't realized it was longer than that. I looked it up this morning. My last email from Mr. Back was in July, 2007, and he informed me that he only designed my scope, but was not responsible for the build quality, which was indeed Markus at APM. I sold the scope on a-mart for nearly a 2K hit, as I revealed all the issues, and stated that it needed an ATM'er to rebuild it, either replacing the all-thread or blackening it all (I was not up to the task).

I didn't realize he was in ill health when I contacted him. I am sorry for dredging this up - it's really tragic that he died so young, and my sympathies and condolences for his loved ones. In consideration of that such a small financial loss is meaningless.

Feeling now about 2" tall, I'll just exit stage left..






Not a problem. FWIW, your scope is not the only one with that build. Someone posted a web page on his repair of his focuser (the lock screw for the rotating part was galling the metal) and he had to remove the objective cell, the rods, and the baffles to get the focuser out because they were all connected. Not a very elegant design, probably functional. Was your tube the non metal material?


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aorion314
super member


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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6601002 - 06/25/14 10:51 AM

aorion314 here, a very honorable mea culpa, we all miss Tom Back and his amazing skill set.

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k5apl
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 05/19/06

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6601034 - 06/25/14 11:05 AM

My choice is the TEC140 because:
There have been 400-500 of them made and sold.....
I owned one and liked it......
TEC bends over backwards for customer service and satisfaction (in my experience).................
Its made in America.........

I have had experience dealing with repair from Europe, and
don't want to go through that again.
YMMV

Wes


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John Anthony
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6601053 - 06/25/14 11:12 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Sure there are some differences - 10mm aperture, oil vs. air spaced, but, a the end of the night, is there a real visual or imaging difference?




I would say no...not for visual anyway. You get about 16% more light gathering from the 140 over the 130. This is inconsequential for visual IME. Resolution gain is only 8%. Both scopes produce under 1 arcsec resolution so you are covered for the vast majority of evening seeing from typical locations. To bring the difference between the two down to smaller instrument, the gain a 140 has over a 130 is about the same gain a 102mm has over a 95mm scope. So in that context, probably easier to understand how little the difference is.

From a theoretical standpoint, the oil spaced 140 might cool a little faster, especially if the air spaces are significant in the 130. But as far as a real measured test, I have not come across any in my readings. Color correction on both scopes is excellent. Looking at the diagrams of the design criteria appeaars the 130 is a hair better...but academic any difference is so small. So all that is left really is mechanicals and how they may differ and the old oil vs air debate - which is not resolvable so either you are not bothered by oil or you are so a personal preference.

All-in-all, given how close the two apertures are, and the weight/size savings, and certainly the cost savings, I'd opt for the 130.




I second this, I owned the TEC 140 and I have looked thru the TMB 130, it was my experience with the TMB 130 that led me to purchase the TMB 92SS without ever looking thru one. Visually both are outstanding and you would be hard pressed to see a difference, personally I prefer the air over the oil, and the cost difference would close the deal for me.


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jrcrillyAdministrator
Refractor wienie no more
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: k5apl]
      #6601078 - 06/25/14 11:22 AM

Quote:

I have had experience dealing with repair from Europe, and
don't want to go through that again.
YMMV

Wes




I don't discount your experience, but it's a red herring so far as this comparison is concerned. Again - there is no European connection with either telescope being considered here.


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Mickey_C
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #6601102 - 06/25/14 11:42 AM

Quote:

Quote:

I have had experience dealing with repair from Europe, and
don't want to go through that again.
YMMV

Wes




I don't discount your experience, but it's a red herring so far as this comparison is concerned. Again - there is no European connection with either telescope being considered here.




So does astro-tech now own/make the TMB signature series? I searched online for who is making them now, and I couldn't find anything definitive, but all the 130 signature series being offered by vendors are astro-tech TMB SS.

If these are astro-tech telescopes, I can only give the strongest of endorsements. My AT80LE is one of the highest quality telescopes I've owned, is a dream to use, and the support is top-notch!


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NHRob
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6601122 - 06/25/14 11:53 AM

Ooops, sorry about my recommendation to get a Tak140.
If you find one let me know!


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jrbarnett
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6601199 - 06/25/14 12:34 PM

There is no comparison. The TEC is the better scopes and the better "deal" in a bang for the buck sense, if you can swing the extra two large.

- Jim


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Scott99
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6601234 - 06/25/14 12:57 PM

So we're talking about the current Asian-produced TMB? The extra 2,000 will be for the premium optics of TEC. That may or may not be what you're after. For the combination of premium optics and bigger aperture I would go for the 140, but I'm sure the TMB130 would serve you well and save you some money.

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BillP
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Scott99]
      #6601270 - 06/25/14 01:23 PM

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.

I have examined both scopes on many occassions. Fit and finish on the TEC I characterize as a notch better than TMB and on-par from my standpoint with AP. So a robustly built and robustly looking machine. The glass however I never trust on any scope regardless of the name as I've had inexpensive optics perform better than top teir brands. So as far as I'm concerned more the luck of the draw...but of course one would hope that the more well known names produce a more consistent quality. But even so, any scope I buy needs to have a cost-free return policy since even the best are never perfect in what goes out the door. Pick a good reseller, and all these worries vanish and can level it to just specification differences.


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Alan French
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6601276 - 06/25/14 01:27 PM

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.

Clear skies, Alan


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prichardson
member


Reged: 10/26/11

Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Alan French]
      #6601345 - 06/25/14 02:16 PM

3 TEC140's on the other site. Stellarvue has just done a first run of 130mm scopes (oil and air-spaced variants). The air-spaced has a slightly shorter f ratio of 6.6. There is also the CFF 140 f6.5 oil-spaced (GPU optics). A memorable view through a TEC140 for me was of sunspots with a Baader wedge. Just a nice scope to look at and through.

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Paul G
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: prichardson]
      #6601400 - 06/25/14 02:42 PM

Quote:

3 TEC140's on the other site. Stellarvue has just done a first run of 130mm scopes (oil and air-spaced variants). The air-spaced has a slightly shorter f ratio of 6.6. There is also the CFF 140 f6.5 oil-spaced (GPU optics). A memorable view through a TEC140 for me was of sunspots with a Baader wedge. Just a nice scope to look at and through.




Be sure to ask TEC to replace the plastic eyepiece collet sleeve with a metal one for solar observing if there is no filter on the objective. The plastic sleeve can get in the beam and can catch on fire.

Edited by Paul G (06/25/14 02:51 PM)


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Mike Clemens
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Paul G]
      #6601409 - 06/25/14 02:48 PM

> Has TEC replaced the plastic collette with a metal
> one for solar observing? IIRC the plastic one can get
> in the beam and can get smoked.

I ditched the TEC clamp immediately on my 200ED and went with the AP compatible tailpiece and think it's much more versatile.


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k5apl
scholastic sledgehammer
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Loc: Arkansas
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mike Clemens]
      #6601422 - 06/25/14 02:57 PM

Me too, Mike, on 160FL.
Wes


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BillP
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Loc: Vienna, VA
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Paul G]
      #6601443 - 06/25/14 03:08 PM

Quote:

The plastic sleeve can get in the beam and can catch on fire.






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RAKing
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mike Clemens]
      #6601444 - 06/25/14 03:08 PM

Me, three!

The 2.7 inch A-P end cap let me insert some CCD spacers so I could adjust the focuser travel for my eyepieces. Plus, the three BIG thumbscrews are much easier to use in cold weather or if you have arthritis.

Cheers,

Ron


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prichardson
member


Reged: 10/26/11

Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Paul G]
      #6601449 - 06/25/14 03:14 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Be sure to ask TEC to replace the plastic eyepiece collet sleeve with a metal one for solar observing if there is no filter on the objective. The plastic sleeve can get in the beam and can catch on fire.




Ouch! TEC and plastic??


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Tank
Carpal Tunnel
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6601506 - 06/25/14 03:55 PM

I have done and doing side by side comparos for the last little while between my TEC 140 and my buddys TMB 130 LZOS lens

I will start off by saying both scope are near perfect for the aperture as far as a Frac is concerned.

The TEC I find has a bit more punch and the 130 is better color corrected when looking at bright stars Sirius / Vega etc.

Cool down give a nod to the TEC 140 also

The TMB is more compact and suited better for WF

Pretty close but bottom line for me is that your getting a 130 perfect scope and your comparing to a 140 perfect scope not really fair because a 150 perfect scope such as the TAK 150 or the AP 155 would/should be better than the 140 and the 160 TEC should be better etc!!

You will be extremely happy with either of these


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David PavlichAdministrator
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #6601519 - 06/25/14 04:03 PM

Quote:

It's probably worth noting that APM had nothing to do with designing or producing either the TMB130SS or the TEC140 - so experiences with APM telescopes don't really apply here.

I owned a TMB130SS and have also spent considerable time looking through local TEC140 telescopes. I believe it would take a real purist to notice a performance difference. Not saying there isn't one, but I decided not to pay for it. I wound up with a TOA-130 in the end, which did offer a performance boost for imaging.




What John said. I've owned all three in John's post and his premiss is correct.

David


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BCNGreyCat
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Paul G]
      #6601604 - 06/25/14 05:12 PM

Quote:

Quote:

3 TEC140's on the other site. Stellarvue has just done a first run of 130mm scopes (oil and air-spaced variants). The air-spaced has a slightly shorter f ratio of 6.6. There is also the CFF 140 f6.5 oil-spaced (GPU optics). A memorable view through a TEC140 for me was of sunspots with a Baader wedge. Just a nice scope to look at and through.




Be sure to ask TEC to replace the plastic eyepiece collet sleeve with a metal one for solar observing if there is no filter on the objective. The plastic sleeve can get in the beam and can catch on fire.




The plastic eyepiece collet sleeve should have been replaced by metal now. At least for the 2013 run, the TEC 140 focuser was all metal.


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BCNGreyCat
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BCNGreyCat]
      #6601607 - 06/25/14 05:15 PM

Just realize you were talking about those 3 on A-mart. Then that might be still plastic if the serial number is in the low range.

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Alan French
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BCNGreyCat]
      #6601623 - 06/25/14 05:23 PM

Quote:

Just realize you were talking about those 3 on A-mart.






Must resist.

Clear skies, Alan


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Paul G
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BCNGreyCat]
      #6601686 - 06/25/14 06:03 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

3 TEC140's on the other site. Stellarvue has just done a first run of 130mm scopes (oil and air-spaced variants). The air-spaced has a slightly shorter f ratio of 6.6. There is also the CFF 140 f6.5 oil-spaced (GPU optics). A memorable view through a TEC140 for me was of sunspots with a Baader wedge. Just a nice scope to look at and through.




Be sure to ask TEC to replace the plastic eyepiece collet sleeve with a metal one for solar observing if there is no filter on the objective. The plastic sleeve can get in the beam and can catch on fire.




The plastic eyepiece collet sleeve should have been replaced by metal now. At least for the 2013 run, the TEC 140 focuser was all metal.




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

Edited by Paul G (06/25/14 06:04 PM)


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mark8888
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Paul G]
      #6601900 - 06/25/14 08:50 PM

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.


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JonM
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6601944 - 06/25/14 09:20 PM

Something to consider that may or may not be important to you is that the TMB 130SS has a lens that is is figured by some unknown person in China while the TEC 140 is completely built in the USA by a known and well respected manufacturer that gives a LIFETIME warranty. I believe the quality control of TEC and the attention to detail is worth the extra cost. You will get what you pay for.

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JonM
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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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NHRob
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6604567 - 06/27/14 01:50 PM

How about a TMB140??


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Jeff B
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Alan French]
      #6604588 - 06/27/14 02:00 PM

Quote:

Also TEC (and AP) have Yahoo groups where Yuri (and Roland) are quite happy to answer questions about their products.

Clear skies, Alan




And they frequent each others forum too, which can be quite entertaining at times.


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snommisbor
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: dvb]
      #6605006 - 06/27/14 07:07 PM

Quote:

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),





I don't believe OPTcorp is selling TEC anymore even though it is on their site. Yuri stated on the Yahoo group that you could only get it direct from TEC. And it you go to the TEC website OPTcorp is no longer listed as a dealer. So I would call before I put any money down. But you have made a great choice and you will not be disappointed.


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MrGrytt
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6606716 - 06/28/14 11:55 PM

Quote:

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.





My apologies for the delay in getting back to this but you have left me curious about a few things. Time-Warner gave me some serious modem problems that had to be resolved and it took a while.
I am curious about your "LOMO" 80/600 and where you got it. The reasons I'm curious are because you are saying things that have never been heard before and also because about 5 or 6 years ago Astronomics found an old stash of supposedly "LOMO" 80mm lenses and weren't sure where they had come from. They were selling them at discount prices and assumed they were LOMO optics. They could even have been lenses that didn't make the grade for normal sale. Never did find out and because of that I didn't buy one of them. In addition, before Thomas Back was ever involved with designing LZOS optics they had made some 80mm optics that were known to not be very good, at least not compared to the present stock of real LOMO 80mm optics. Hopefully you know for sure what the origin of that lens is before saying things that cut down one of the premier 80mm optics ever made.

Quote:


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.





There are brands you can have a great deal of confidence in. If you chose not to have confidence in them that is totally up to you. Regardless, I have no doubt that no matter where optics originate they will be highly scrutinized by the majority of people who obtain them. I also have no doubt that those who chose to buy from a known manufacturer with an excellent reputation will have far fewer legitimate complaints.


Quote:


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.




Does this mean you never buy a new scope from some of the more reputable manufacturers? It seems highly unlikely that you can have some of them in your possession to undergo your personal quality control prior to purchasing. It seems to me that you, like most people, will often be forced to determine the actual quality of the optics after you have shelled out your money. If not, you are very fortunate or only buy used equipment. Regardless of new or used, a person always has the option of not keeping the scope. That brings up another question. Why do you still have the LOMO 80/600 if it is sub-par performer?

Harvey


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Scott99
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: MrGrytt]
      #6607317 - 06/29/14 12:11 PM

re: TEC's minimum Strehl - after poking around the Yahoo group archives it doesn't appear that TEC ever stated a minimum Strehl ratio, however, Yuri has said the lenses are 1/8 or 1/10 PV, and RMS 1/50 or better - 1/50 RMS converts to 98.4% Strehl ratio…..

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/tec-scopes/conversations/messages/1738

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/tec-scopes/conversations/messages/2628

again though, this doesn't mean that everyone needs to buy and use a TEC! It seems to be a common attitude that the refractor needs to be a perfect apo or else the scope is bad. I've been hearing this at star parties too. Nonsense - I'm happy to have a couple of "premium" apos right now, but I've had lots of fun with simple achromats, one of my favorite ones was the 1980's University Optics 80mm F/6.6, that's the one that hooked me on the refractor experience.

With today's machine-polishing methods, decent quality small and mid-size refractors are more affordable than ever. IMO the message should be, get the obstruction out from in front of your objective and start observing, let the rest of us obsessed apo-philes argue about Strehl ratios & such in these forums, don't worry about it!

the high-strehl lens will get the image quality a little bit cleaner, but most refractors will show nice tight star images and good contrast compared with obstructed scopes. All of the ED triplets will do a good job with color correction.


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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: MrGrytt]
      #6607441 - 06/29/14 01:17 PM

Hello Harvey. Yes, the LZOS was a Tom Back inspected one. Know that for sure as I used to correspond with him. Didn't say it was bad. It was a basic "good" optic...nothing special. Some like to attribute mystical qualities to brands, but nothing mystical really goes on and with the good comes the bad, that's just the way it is as people make mistakes and machines that are programmed and built by people make mistakes also. And no, I choose no brand with confidence. Sorry, but I assume nothing when I purchase and inspect everything. One really has to accept the premise that people make mistakes. That being the case, branding is no substitute for due diligence by the consumer IMO.

More reputable than manufacturers? Sure...there are plenty. As example, a manufacturer direct warranty may require you pay for shipping, but a reseller warranty on top of that may require no shipping charges. Resellers have their own terms and conditions for purchase, and many have much better terms than the manufacturer...like allowing a return just because you are not happy with the product. Manufacturer directs most of the time have no such policy. So invariably I will gravitate to a reseller because they have better terms. And yes, one shells out the cash first. But that is never a worry when you get a confirmation of the policy from them. And no I do not have the just fine LOMO that was bested by the Chinese scope. I have the Chinese scope of course. In no way was the LOMO "sub-par". It performed excellently in all respects. Another scope simply beat it and that one I kept.


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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: hottr6]
      #6608244 - 06/29/14 09:53 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.




I've owned my TEC140 for about 7-8 years and it's not going anywhere. Now, I'm not about to suggest one scope over another, but if l were considering buying a bigger scope,I'd have no problem with getting another TEC product.

Edited by SteveC (06/29/14 10:09 PM)


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MrGrytt
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6608278 - 06/29/14 10:14 PM

Quote:

Hello Harvey. Yes, the LZOS was a Tom Back inspected one. Know that for sure as I used to correspond with him. Didn't say it was bad. It was a basic "good" optic...nothing special.





I was asking about the LOMO optic, not the LZOS optic.

As long as you brought it up, which LZOS optic was involved?

Harvey


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peleuba
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Paul G]
      #6611699 - 07/01/14 05:26 PM

Quote:

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?




I dont have the link handy, but its on the Yahoo group that Yuri states that for the 140 and larger telescopes the minimum quality is 1/8 wave in green light - have no idea what the equivalent Strehl ratio is but I can tell you it would be lower then .984 as this fugure is more akin to 1/10 wave. When I tested both my TEC160ED and later the TEC160FL, both scopes were better then 1/8 wave with the 160FL approaching 1/10 wave in green Interestingly in was also quite good in red, not so much in blue.

Now, my TEC110FL was no where near as good and TEC has backed off on the "1/8 wave in green" standard on the 110FL. I was ultimatly very unhappy with the performance of my 110FL on the bench and under the stars and Yuri explained that he "relaxed the standards" on the 110FL due to the compexity of the design, curves, glass melt etc and that there is no routine hand asperizing any of the surfaces. My 110 was barely diffraction limited and the star test was an utter mess.


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RAKing
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6612558 - 07/02/14 08:08 AM

Quote:

Now, my TEC110FL was no where near as good and TEC has backed off on the "1/8 wave in green" standard on the 110FL. I was ultimatly very unhappy with the performance of my 110FL on the bench and under the stars and Yuri explained that he "relaxed the standards" on the 110FL due to the compexity of the design, curves, glass melt etc and that there is no routine hand asperizing any of the surfaces. My 110 was barely diffraction limited and the star test was an utter mess.




Ouch! I am very sorry to hear that news.

Ron


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peleuba
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: RAKing]
      #6612636 - 07/02/14 09:15 AM Attachment (43 downloads)

Quote:



Ouch! I am very sorry to hear that news.

Ron




Me too. I was incredibly bummed. I have owned large APOs up to 160mm in aperture and for me and APO refractor really shines in the smaller apertures up to 130mm. Above that and I really prefer using my Portaball-8 on the Tom O. platform.

I bought based on my experience with the 160ED and the 160FL, both really excellent. I was lead to beleive that the 110FL would be manufactured to the same level - it was not. I sent the telescope back to Yuri and he said that he was unable to do any better based on the design and current glass melt - mine was the first scope from the second run. He did refund my money and I would not hesitate to puchase another TEC if in the future. Star Test images from my TEC110FL below...


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t.r.
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6612772 - 07/02/14 10:35 AM

Paul, I've read about your TEC110 before and just noticed you have a Tak Sky 90II which is of similar short focus design using fluorite as well...how is its quality compared to the TEC?

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: t.r.]
      #6612801 - 07/02/14 10:49 AM

Quote:

Paul, I've read about your TEC110 before and just noticed you have a Tak Sky 90II which is of similar short focus design using fluorite as well...how is its quality compared to the TEC?



+1 t.r. I was just wondering the same thing?
Rex


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Tank
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: tomcody]
      #6612853 - 07/02/14 11:29 AM

FYI
My TEC 140 has a awesome figure in and out focus is virtually identical at 300x
Too bad on the TEC110 is sure theres great ones out there!


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dedo
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Tank]
      #6613213 - 07/02/14 02:46 PM

At F5.6 it's really hard...also remember the sky90 is a....well, a 90. Differences in aperture does counts in that subject too.

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jrcrillyAdministrator
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: t.r.]
      #6613242 - 07/02/14 03:03 PM

Quote:

just noticed you have a Tak Sky 90II which is of similar short focus design using fluorite as well...




The designs aren't very similar. One's an oiled triplet and the other's an airspaced doublet.


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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6613261 - 07/02/14 03:12 PM

Looks very normal for a very fast triplet, TBH. Similar to how Travelers star test.

You might find this interesting:

http://geogdata.csun.edu/~voltaire/roland/startest2.html

I can see that if you were expecting Suiter results on the bench or on the star test, you'd be disappointed. But given that yours performed poorly in focus, you probably did the right thing.

My point though is that anyone expecting matched patterns inside and outside of focus with very fast triplet refractor optics is barking up the wrong tree. Great standard for slower doublets. Lousy for complex systems like SCTs and fast triplets.

- Jim


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ryderc1
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6613314 - 07/02/14 03:41 PM

If my Traveler's star test patterns looked anything like those I'd be concerned too! Fortunately, they don't.

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peleuba
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: t.r.]
      #6613321 - 07/02/14 03:44 PM Attachment (29 downloads)

Quote:

Paul, I've read about your TEC110 before and just noticed you have a Tak Sky 90II which is of similar short focus design using fluorite as well...how is its quality compared to the TEC?




Hi Tim - I really like the SKY90. The star test is certainly better then the TEC110FL but color correction is better in the TEC. Frankly, the TAK is not as bad as I have read it to be. I was expecting worse.

Takahashi manages spherical aberration by adjusting the spacing between the elements. This degree of freedom also has a downside as it makes collimation and centering a real PITA. And, it calls for a robust lens cell.

Regarding the TEC110FL - to be able to control SA in the design employed by TEC you would have to hand aspherize one of the surfaces. TEC does not do this routinely on any telescope they produce.

The star test in my post above and the focault images below show the issue… It looks like an edge problem but really its gross amounts of HSA. Foucault #1 shows issue at the edge of lens; Foucault #2 shows a hill at ~83% radius, and then a very steep fall-off from there to edge. Star tests with a 3mm eyepiece + green filter showed a significant halo around the Airy disk extending to many (about 5-10) disk diameters. Masking off the outer radius of the lens improves the view a lot. Reducing the aperture to 100mm using a mask shows nice improvement; using a larger mask, reducing clear aperture to 85mm (77% clear diameter) shows a near-perfect star test.

Anyway, so I like my Sky90-II more then my sample of the TEC110FL, aperture notwithstanding.


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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6613332 - 07/02/14 03:52 PM

Thanks Paul, I found my Tak Sky 90II to be very good as well in the star test but yes, residual CA remained. Still, a good optic and fine visual performer, CA and all. The collimation is indeed an issue.

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peleuba
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6613348 - 07/02/14 03:57 PM

Quote:

Looks very normal for a very fast triplet, TBH. Similar to how Travelers star test.


I can see that if you were expecting Suiter results on the bench or on the star test, you'd be disappointed. But given that yours performed poorly in focus, you probably did the right thing.

My point though is that anyone expecting matched patterns inside and outside of focus with very fast triplet refractor optics is barking up the wrong tree. Great standard for slower doublets. Lousy for complex systems like SCTs and fast triplets.

- Jim




Jim, I appreciate the note but this not my first rodeo testing refractors... I've tested a traveler and it was not nearly anything like this.

TEC's standards are relaxed for the 110 - something I did not realize until I purchased one new from Yuri... I has also purchased a 160ED and a 160FL from TEC and was thrilled with the performance. I expected better or at least I wish I had known that performance would not be on par with the larger TEC scopes.

I do agree with you point on exactly matched patterns... I can send you images of my 160FL which tested out near 1/10 wave. The patterns are not exact.


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t.r.
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6614343 - 07/03/14 07:55 AM

Paul...as a side note, I see you've sold the AP130GT. You've said that the AP tested as one of the best out of your scopes...just curious, what refractor are you settling in with for visual?

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peleuba
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: t.r.]
      #6614492 - 07/03/14 09:53 AM

Quote:

Paul...as a side note, I see you've sold the AP130GT. You've said that the AP tested as one of the best out of your scopes...just curious, what refractor are you settling in with for visual?




Hi Tim - yes, have a sale pending on the AP130GT and in my tests I could find absolutely nothing wrong. Its ostensibly perfect. The lens is better then 1/10 wave - its a real beauty. But as good as it is, my Portaball-8 on one of my Tom O. platforms is the better planetary telescope. Plus, there is less hassle-factor with the PB8 then with AP130GT on my G11. The Sky 90 will do well for me on widefield and extreme portability. So, I took the opportunity to lessen my investment in the hobby.

If it was not for my bad experience with the TEC110FL, I would have never purchased the AP130GT or the Sky90. I really wished the 110FL would have worked out. But it was not manufactured to a level of quality which I require.

Best Regards.


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t.r.
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6614501 - 07/03/14 09:57 AM

It is funny that you have settled for a 90mm refractor for our seeing conditions...many times in the past I have posted my belief that 90mm is a minimum for satisfactory planetary viewing, doing almost as well as a 100mm without the added bulk. 80mm's don't quite get me there. But I have had many great planetary sessions with my WO 90 Megrez, Tak Sky 90II and TMB 92L. The little 90's are excellent, highly portable scopes, too bad the AP Stowaway is still not produced with the level of quality of the Gran Turismo. I'll have a 90 apo again someday. They truly deserve the moniker "The Little Scope That Could"! For now, my 90mm fix has to come from my Celestron C90 Mak!

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6614583 - 07/03/14 10:49 AM

I hear ya Paul. I know you've done your homework.

My comment was for the benefit of all the folks proclaiming identical diffraction patterns for their fast triplets; if so, then they have problems - either something wrong with the scope or something wrong with their testing procedures.

I've seen similar intra- and extra-focal patterns in speedy triplets, but never identical. The only scope I have that is close to "identical" is an Antares 105/1500 that is stopped down by poor cell design to ~95mm clear aperture, yielding an effective focal ratio of ~15.8. But it's a simple doublet, not a triplet, and has boatloads of false color compared to "apochromatic" designs, but unlike several faster achromats I also have, the false color is at a level just below objectionable and damaging.

Regards,

Jim


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MrGrytt
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6616570 - 07/04/14 02:44 PM

Quote:


I bought based on my experience with the 160ED and the 160FL, both really excellent. I was lead to believe that the 110FL would be manufactured to the same level - it was not. I sent the telescope back to Yuri and he said that he was unable to do any better based on the design and current glass melt - mine was the first scope from the second run.





If the standards were lowered for the 2nd run due to a problem with the glass melt for that run a whole lot of people should have been informed of that fact.

It's good that at least one person was able to tell the difference.

I know part of what helped you decide to get a 110FL was doing some observing with mine, which was from early on the 1st run. There is no reason that you should have expected it to be of lesser quality.

Harvey


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SteveC
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: MrGrytt]
      #6617202 - 07/04/14 09:28 PM

Quote:

Quote:


I bought based on my experience with the 160ED and the 160FL, both really excellent. I was lead to believe that the 110FL would be manufactured to the same level - it was not. I sent the telescope back to Yuri and he said that he was unable to do any better based on the design and current glass melt - mine was the first scope from the second run.





If the standards were lowered for the 2nd run due to a problem with the glass melt for that run a whole lot of people should have been informed of that fact.

It's good that at least one person was able to tell the difference.

I know part of what helped you decide to get a 110FL was doing some observing with mine, which was from early on the 1st run. There is no reason that you should have expected it to be of lesser quality.

Harvey




I believe Paul was discussing both runs. Mine was from the end of the first run and has been a pleasure to observe with.

What is your experience with the TEC110?


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Scott99
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: SteveC]
      #6618416 - 07/05/14 05:14 PM

interesting report on the TEC110, thanks for posting, Have not star tested mine, I'll have to, it has shown me some excellent Mars views though, seems to be at least as good as the Traveler I owned.

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peleuba
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: SteveC]
      #6618446 - 07/05/14 05:35 PM

Quote:



I believe Paul was discussing both runs. Mine was from the end of the first run and has been a pleasure to observe with.




No - I was speaking only of the second run. Mine was the first scope from the second run. I have viewed through several from the first run and while not perfect, they were considerably better then my sample.


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peleuba
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: MrGrytt]
      #6618452 - 07/05/14 05:42 PM

Quote:


It's good that at least one person was able to tell the difference.

I know part of what helped you decide to get a 110FL was doing some observing with mine, which was from early on the 1st run. There is no reason that you should have expected it to be of lesser quality.





The issues were pretty obvious even at 120x or so. The planets had a significant halo around them and it was not chromatic in nature.

I was disappointed, for sure, after such high expectations after viewing with yours.


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SteveC
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6618886 - 07/05/14 11:01 PM

Quote:

Quote:



I believe Paul was discussing both runs. Mine was from the end of the first run and has been a pleasure to observe with.




No - I was speaking only of the second run. Mine was the first scope from the second run. I have viewed through several from the first run and while not perfect, they were considerably better then my sample.




Okie dokey then, I only remember your referencing two 160mm TEC scopes in this thread and expecting the 110 to match quality wise. My 110 is #23, and like I said, the views have been great, though I wonder/worry if there was a gradual reduction in standards. If standards were relaxed, then the price should have been reduced and buyers notified. Heck, the second run didn't even come with the free travel case.


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BCNGreyCat
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: peleuba]
      #6618940 - 07/05/14 11:57 PM

Quote:

The issues were pretty obvious even at 120x or so. The planets had a significant halo around them and it was not chromatic in nature.

I was disappointed, for sure, after such high expectations after viewing with yours.




Not sure what you mean by significant halo around planet at 120x. Is it something like the halo around the moon when it is behind a thin cloud?

I have had great views of Jupiter and Saturn of my TEC110, which is near the end of the 2nd run. And I just finished a short observing session of Saturn tonight. Transparency is so so and seeing is okay. Very good view of Saturn using TV 3-6 zoom. Cannot notice the halo.

There is a review of TEC110 of the 1st run from a French folk. It mentioned that TEC relaxed the standard to 1/6 PV instead of 1/8 PV.

http://www.astrosurf.com/laurent/apo110e.htm

Cannot imagine the 2nd run be even further relaxed. It would be interesting to have different TEC110 samples being viewed through side by side to see if there is any significant/noticeable differences.


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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BCNGreyCat]
      #6619288 - 07/06/14 09:21 AM

Perhaps we should get back to the original "TEC140 or TMB130" topic. If anyone so desires they could start a separate TEC110 thread.

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MrGrytt
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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: SteveC]
      #6619375 - 07/06/14 10:37 AM

Quote:


I believe Paul was discussing both runs. Mine was from the end of the first run and has been a pleasure to observe with.





If you remember, there was a significant delay, or more than one delay, when Yuri was getting ready for production. It took a while to get things right but I don't remember all the details now. During the time I ordered and received the scope I had not heard anything regarding a quality standard reduction. It would be interesting to know when that actually took place. It would also be interesting to know where and when the information was announced, as it should have been. Of course if you don't have a minimum quality specification listed anywhere I suppose a company isn't obligated to announce anything at all.

You do have to credit Astro-Physics and LZOS for listing minimum quality standards.


Quote:


What is your experience with the TEC110?




It is a decent performer for such a fast scope. The images in focus are quite good when the seeing conditions are good, and that's all that really matters. When star testing, particularly for the first time, it was a bit scary. It reacts differently from any other scope I have, and not in a manner that I would associate with the speed of the optic. On a night of average seeing the pattern outside of focus is sharp and distinct but the pattern inside of focus is like looking into a dancing garbled kaleidoscope with a rainbow of colors. That shook me up quite a bit the first time I star tested it. Under very good seeing conditions the pattern inside of focus is much more typical but there appears to be some obvious over-correction present.

What concerned me initially is that every other refractor I own reacts differently from the 110FL. In all cases, particularly while cooling, slight under-correction is present in my other scopes. Once cooled the pattern outside of focus is dependent on the seeing conditions. The 110FL is totally backward from that, with the pattern inside of focus appearing to be dependent on the seeing conditions. This is very obvious. At the start of any observing session I do a quick star test just to get an idea of the seeing conditions so I am particularly aware of, and continually reminded of this, when using the 110FL. Star testing them a few times under excellent conditions will tell you what you want to know about the optic of a scope and after that the star test is a good tool for checking the seeing conditions.

Most of my other scopes are f/8 or slower because that's my preference. I do have one other scope that is almost as fast as the 110FL and it reacts in the same manner as the other slower refractors.

My reason for buying it was for wide field photography which I hope to get involved with once I have the time for it. The dedicated field flattener was a major influence in making the decision to buy it.

Harvey


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Patrik Iver
professor emeritus


Reged: 07/29/03

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: MrGrytt]
      #6619779 - 07/06/14 02:22 PM

My French is regrettably not good enough to fully understand the report on Airylabs homepage, but perhaps someone here is skilled at reading the numbers and graphics in this TEC 110 FL report:
Link to web page.


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dvb
different Syndrome.
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Reged: 06/18/05

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: star drop]
      #6619993 - 07/06/14 04:10 PM

Quote:

Perhaps we should get back to the original "TEC140 or TMB130" topic. If anyone so desires they could start a separate TEC110 thread.




Here, Here!

(The OP)


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Alan French
Night Owl
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Reged: 01/28/05

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: star drop]
      #6620994 - 07/07/14 08:13 AM

Quote:

Perhaps we should get back to the original "TEC140 or TMB130" topic. If anyone so desires they could start a separate TEC110 thread.




Indeed. Long past time.

Clear skies, Alan


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star dropModerator
contra contrail
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Reged: 02/02/08

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Alan French]
      #6621196 - 07/07/14 10:59 AM

Further off topic posts will be removed at moderators discretion. Since a warning has previously been placed in this thread and ignored by a few I am quoting a sentence from the Cloudy Nights terms of service.
Quote:


Intentional thread hijacking will not be tolerated, and the intent will be left to the discretion of the moderators.





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Mickey_C
sage
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Reged: 04/27/05

Loc: AZ
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: BillP]
      #6623371 - 07/08/14 12:41 PM

Could somebody provide a link to the TMB130 being discussed?

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

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6623598 - 07/08/14 02:43 PM

TMB130SS Link

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snommisbor
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 06/15/09

Loc: Cedar Park, TX
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: t.r.]
      #6623937 - 07/08/14 06:15 PM

I wonder how long the wait list is for that scope. I still think the new Stellarvue 130 air space and oil space triplet could be a great alternative to either scope and so far seems to be a pretty short wait time if wait time is a factor.

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RAKing
Postmaster
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Reged: 12/28/07

Loc: West of the D.C. Nebula
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: snommisbor]
      #6623960 - 07/08/14 06:36 PM

The last time I talked to Astronomics about this, they said they were looking to switch to a new producer. This was in late 2012 (or early 2013), so there haven't been any new ones made for a while.

I hope they do begin production again soon. The TMB 130SS is a very nice scope and is the equal to my TEC 140 in everything but aperture. I recently let my TEC 140 go and happily found another TMB. It's a little shorter and a bit easier for me to handle. (I have physical "issues", so please don't take that as any criticism of the TEC.)

Cheers,

Ron


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Mickey_C
sage
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Reged: 04/27/05

Loc: AZ
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: RAKing]
      #6624063 - 07/08/14 07:42 PM

Quote:

The last time I talked to Astronomics about this, they said they were looking to switch to a new producer. This was in late 2012 (or early 2013), so there haven't been any new ones made for a while.

I hope they do begin production again soon. The TMB 130SS is a very nice scope and is the equal to my TEC 140 in everything but aperture. I recently let my TEC 140 go and happily found another TMB. It's a little shorter and a bit easier for me to handle. (I have physical "issues", so please don't take that as any criticism of the TEC.)

Cheers,

Ron




Switching producers makes this scope a wildcard, IMHO.


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Jon_Doh
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/16/11

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Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6624803 - 07/09/14 08:48 AM

Quote:


Switching producers makes this scope a wildcard, IMHO.




Yes it does.


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RAKing
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 12/28/07

Loc: West of the D.C. Nebula
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Jon_Doh]
      #6624943 - 07/09/14 10:17 AM

Quote:

Quote:


Switching producers makes this scope a wildcard, IMHO.




Yes it does.




I agree -- if that does turn out to be the case. If you are interested, the best course of action would be to call Astronomics for accurate news.

Bottom line for me - the "old" TMB 130SS is a fantastic scope and I'm very happy I found another one.

Cheers,

Ron


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Mickey_C
sage
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Reged: 04/27/05

Loc: AZ
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: RAKing]
      #6626232 - 07/10/14 01:48 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:


Switching producers makes this scope a wildcard, IMHO.




Yes it does.




I agree -- if that does turn out to be the case. If you are interested, the best course of action would be to call Astronomics for accurate news.

Bottom line for me - the "old" TMB 130SS is a fantastic scope and I'm very happy I found another one.

Cheers,

Ron




Not meaning to derail the topic... but Ron, I see in your sig that you have both the 130ss and the Tec 6 MCT. I've owned a TEC 6" MCT (it was number 42 and I rue the day I sold it) and I owned the APM TMB 130 LW CNC II at the same time. The TEC was the better of the scopes... and despite being a cat, it had superior contrast on planets. I've never seen Jupiter's bands and swirls look so artist-drawn as in that scope. Of course the TMB won on wide fields - which was also fine as it had too much light scatter for bright objects anyway. All said there is no scope I regret selling more than my TEC MCT 6".

How do those two of yours compare?

Edited by Mickey_C (07/11/14 12:56 PM)


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RAKing
Postmaster
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Reged: 12/28/07

Loc: West of the D.C. Nebula
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Mickey_C]
      #6626405 - 07/10/14 07:40 AM

PM on the way.

Ron


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Moonglum
professor emeritus


Reged: 06/01/08

Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: RAKing]
      #6627214 - 07/10/14 10:44 PM

Hi Mickey C. For my own personal reference may I ask what vintage your APM TMB 130 LWT was? Obviously the F6, not the F9?

Kirk


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Mickey_C
sage
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Reged: 04/27/05

Loc: AZ
Re: TEC140 or TMB130 new [Re: Moonglum]
      #6627549 - 07/11/14 03:14 AM

Quote:

Hi Mickey C. For my own personal reference may I ask what vintage your APM TMB 130 LWT was? Obviously the F6, not the F9?

Kirk




It was the (APM) TMB 130 F6 CNC LW II, originally I ordered spring/summer 2006. Once upon a time there was a CN thread about it, IIRC, though I don't see it now. It was a pricey telescope, though I don't give a heck about the money now, knowing the full story about Thomas Back's tragic death. Besides, it was as he said, a matter between myself and APM. I sold it fall/winter of 2007, and disclosed the wonderful opportunities it presented for the ATM'er.


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