Just a side issue; describing the star images in a C9.25" schmidt as "bloated" is misleading and likely was the view at lower power in bad seeing . A properly collimated SCT in (key) excellent seeing produces star images that are 1/2 the size of an apo of 1/2 the aperture, that's optical law. If at high power the SCT produces star images bloated to twice normal size, and a completely unrecognizable diffraction pattern (which would be the result) then the optics would be many waves out of spec. So before condemning any large aperture scope, consider adequate cool-down and seeing.
The SCT in great seeing was an excellent scope, but the stars were larger than 6" APO. So they were "bloated". I can see the difference is star size even with imaging. The SCT while a light bucket and letting go fainter also has some issue, for example it has large mirror shift and finding perfect focus was hard due the way the scope focuses (by moving the rear mirror). For the price an SCT is a great scope that is compact and is an excellent planetary imaging scope (see below)
But for star clusters the stars are bloated compared to my APO's, something about an APO and tiny stars.