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10'' or 12'' Dobsonian as first telescope?

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#51 darkskies14

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 12:19 PM

Definitely do not get a 9mm Plossl. Also a 15mm sounds bad too. Eyerelief is the issue with short Plossls.
Go on ebay and get the 6mm or 9mm 66 deg eyepieces. Just search for 66 deg eyepiece. They are $28 each. Otherwise, Meade 82 deg for $129 are a good deal. You can but used here on cloudynights classifieds.

I don't know about good 3x barlows. Let me know if you find any. 2x is standard.

Used 10" come up on Craigslist for $300 sometimes, probably because the previous owner does not know how to collimate.

Thank you for the info!



#52 ShaulaB

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 12:34 PM

YES! Next question.

#53 aeajr

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 03:14 PM

So I checked out the links you gave me and I want to get everything from the beggining. Initially I was just thinking about the scope and maybe another eyepiece.

 

Now I see that it wouldn't be wise to order just that and then have to order different stuff again - it would mean more waiting time from observing, taxes and all that. So now I am doing my homework on what I need and it's getting rather expensive: 

 

  • Eyepieces: a 25mm Plossl is included, so I was thinking to get a 9mm and a 15mm; I'm not sure if it's worth to go with Plossls for these too or just get better quality ones right away - ones with a bigger FOV and better image quality overall. And if that's the case then it would mean about $300 more;
  • Barlow: definitely a 2x, I don't know if I need a 3x also;
  • Filters: Moon and light pollution;
  • Laser collimator
  • Books and charts

 

Another thing that I was unaware of (my bad) is that the transport fee is going to be about $150 due to the package's weight.

 

I'll have to save more money, but I should be able to buy it in just a few months. But I am certain that I will go for the 10'' Omegon.

 

So thank you for the information, you saved me a few bucks and a headache. lol.gif

I can't speak to shipping and tax costs in Europe so I am going to ignore those points. 

 

As I outlined in the eyepiece paper, I would not buy a Plossl shorter than 10 mm and 12 is better, due to eye relief.  If you are going to stay with Plossls then plan for 12 mm and longer combined with a 2X barlow for your higher powers. 

 

The BST Starguiders would be a better option for eyepieces. 

https://www.firstlig...-eyepieces.html

 

In the USA these are called AT Paradigm or Agena Astro Starguider dual ED which were among my recommended eyepieces.    Excellent eyepieces at a moderate price with better eye relief than Plossls at shorter focal lengths.  They also offer a wider AFOV, apparent field of view. 

 

BST also has a Barlow that would work well for you.

https://www.firstlig...arlow-lens.html

 

First Light has a bundle offer for these:

BST StarGuider Eyepieces & Barlows Special Bundle Prices

 

 

Light pollution filters have become virtually useless in the USA and I recommend against them.  Most areas have gone to white LEDs and light pollution filters don't help with these.   If you have Mercury or Sodium vapor streetlights then the light pollution filter may be of some help.    

 

A 25% moon filter or a variable Moon filter would be a good idea.

 

Turn Left at Orion gets my recommendation for a good first book.

 

Finally you need an observing chair.   I listed some in that paper.  I have the Denver Chair that I built myself. 

 

Hope that helps. 


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#54 stargazer193857

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 03:04 AM

A 12mm plossl is redundant to 25mm and 2x barlow. 18mm would have more eye relief and give 12.5mm and 9mm.

I have a 10mm. Even without glasses I must ram my eye in there to get the full view. 15mm may work, but 20mm is the shortest comfortable length.

The ES 24mm 68 deg is a really nice eyepiece. Get it used for $100. Much wider view than a 25mm Plossl, buy it costs more and fills your pocket.

The 82 deg 24mm and 30mm won't fit in your pocket.
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#55 darkskies14

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 07:13 AM

I can't speak to shipping and tax costs in Europe so I am going to ignore those points. 

 

As I outlined in the eyepiece paper, I would not buy a Plossl shorter than 10 mm and 12 is better, due to eye relief.  If you are going to stay with Plossls then plan for 12 mm and longer combined with a 2X barlow for your higher powers. 

 

The BST Starguiders would be a better option for eyepieces. 

https://www.firstlig...-eyepieces.html

 

In the USA these are called AT Paradigm or Agena Astro Starguider dual ED which were among my recommended eyepieces.    Excellent eyepieces at a moderate price with better eye relief than Plossls at shorter focal lengths.  They also offer a wider AFOV, apparent field of view. 

 

BST also has a Barlow that would work well for you.

https://www.firstlig...arlow-lens.html

 

First Light has a bundle offer for these:

BST StarGuider Eyepieces & Barlows Special Bundle Prices

 

 

Light pollution filters have become virtually useless in the USA and I recommend against them.  Most areas have gone to white LEDs and light pollution filters don't help with these.   If you have Mercury or Sodium vapor streetlights then the light pollution filter may be of some help.    

 

A 25% moon filter or a variable Moon filter would be a good idea.

 

Turn Left at Orion gets my recommendation for a good first book.

 

Finally you need an observing chair.   I listed some in that paper.  I have the Denver Chair that I built myself. 

 

Hope that helps. 

Thank you, I think that I'll stick with these.


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#56 darkskies14

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 07:13 AM

A 12mm plossl is redundant to 25mm and 2x barlow. 18mm would have more eye relief and give 12.5mm and 9mm.

I have a 10mm. Even without glasses I must ram my eye in there to get the full view. 15mm may work, but 20mm is the shortest comfortable length.

The ES 24mm 68 deg is a really nice eyepiece. Get it used for $100. Much wider view than a 25mm Plossl, buy it costs more and fills your pocket.

The 82 deg 24mm and 30mm won't fit in your pocket.

Thanks!



#57 aeajr

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 07:21 AM

Thank you, I think that I'll stick with these.

By these, I presume you mean the BST Starguiders.

 

Discussions about Paradigm eyepieces - If you want to read about peoples experience

AT Paradigm, Agena Astro Starguider Dual ED, BST Starguiders are all the same eyepiece with different labels

 

https://www.cloudyni...s/#entry8229760
https://www.cloudyni...s/?hl=+paradigm
https://www.cloudyni...d/?hl=+paradigm
https://www.cloudyni...d/?hl=+paradigm


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#58 stargazer193857

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 02:14 PM

I do lust after the light grasp of a 12". But the extra 2" is not apples to apples. The eyepiece height will not swing by just 12/10. The heavier mirror puts the pivot lower. A 10" can use a simple chair, but the 12" needs an adjustable one. A bigger eyepiece is needed to fit the big stuff. The bigger eyepiece won't fit in your pocket. The scope itself needs set up time or more space.

12" is just a bigger investment. It can give better views, but you have to carry more out, set up more, invest more in accessories. Also bigger aperture is harder to focus with your eyes when the sky fluctuates. That is more an issue above 12" though.

I've used 8", have 8", and think it is satisfying for beginners or those who don't mind training a skilled eye. Even 4.5" found many DSO for me but really lacked detail even on the planets. If you have sampled a lot here and there in different scopes and not trained your eye with study, you won't be happy with 8" even under dark skies. 10" is nicely better than 8" but not dramatic. 12" is dramatically better than 8", as long as framing the object is not an issue.

Edited by stargazer193857, 20 June 2019 - 02:36 PM.

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#59 GeneT

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 02:22 PM

After watching this issue--a 10 or 12 incher, I agree with some conventional wisdom that I have picked up over the years. There are many advantages to a solid tube Dob--as long as it is 10 inch or smaller. Twelve inches and larger should be Truss telescopes. A 12 inch (or larger) solid tube Dob is difficult to fit into many vehicles, and it is quite clumsy to handle. I own a 12.5 inch F5 Portaball, which is a truss telescope, and it is easy to store, will fit into any vehicle, and is easy to set up and take down. I believe it is the 'hassle' factor that kills many people's enthusiasm for getting out and viewing. Everyone has a different tolerance factor for hassle. Too small a telescope will not reveal as much as a larger one. One exception with this comment is that a lot of people view with 2 to 4 inch refractors, and swear by them. Just check the refractor's CN forum. However, when you move up to six inch and larger refractors, then the hassle factor looms. The same for SCT or Macs. An 8 inch SCT of Mac will show a lot of stuff. They are easy to store and set up. They make great telescopes for camping and other outdoor venues. However, when you get up to 12 inch and larger, they can be a handful. You will meet people who view with 20 inch and larger Dobs, and have vehicles, and ramps, and ladders, and so on, and don't mind the hassle. 

 

For me, the 12.5 inch Dob is perfect. Many refer to it as the 'Goldilocks' telescope because it is just right. A 12 incher has twice the light gathering capability of an 8 inch. That is significant. At the eyepiece, viewing objects through a 10 vs. a 12 incher, you will notice that there is not a huge difference whether viewing planets or deep sky objects. Of course, there is a difference in that the 12 incher is pulling in more light. However, going from an 8 to a 12, one will notice a considerable difference, especially when viewing deep sky objects; maybe not so much when doing planetary viewing.

 

Several years ago, I bought an 18 inch Ultra Compact. I had high hopes for this telescope. Its footprint was not so much different from my 12.5 inch Portaball. However, with the Portaball, I could easily set my telescope in the vehicle, with loads of room left over for tables, eyepieces and other accessories. Not so with the 18 UC. It required ramps which take up a lot of room. Its performance on planets was not as good as with my 12.5 incher. I did all the proper cool down, ran fans, and so on. I attribute that to the Portaball probably having better optics. Of course, deep sky objects were brighter and more pronounced with the 18 UC. One take away from all this is that I agree with whomever said on Cloudy Nights that the best accessory for viewing--is a tank of gas. Getting out to a dark sky site maximizes my 'Goldilocks' telescope. After about six months of A B comparisons between my Portaball and my Ultra Compact, I sold the Ultra Compact. My smaller Portaball gives its all, and I will never part with it.

Gene Townsend   


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#60 stargazer193857

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 02:45 PM

As for 2" refractors, I advise investing in a 2" finder with a 1.25" eyepiece tube so you can put good 68 deg eyepieces in there instead of the 45 deg kelners that come with finders. It will cost more money, but the wide view is worth it.

Long refractors have higher contrast to make up for less aperture. I've seen it. But make the aperture big enough on some objects, and use velvet, and the aperture wins. For the price, the dob newt is a bargain.

#61 25585

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 03:44 PM

This is my 10" F5. Same as the US ES version.  https://www.bresser....-10-Dobson.html

 

For a solid tube very portable and it has the benefit of the best mount for that size. I wish a 12" version was made.


Edited by 25585, 20 June 2019 - 03:44 PM.

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#62 stargazer193857

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 05:07 PM

This is my 10" F5. Same as the US ES version. https://www.bresser....-10-Dobson.html

For a solid tube very portable and it has the benefit of the best mount for that size. I wish a 12" version was made.


If I did not plan to build my own scope, I would buy that one. The price is hard to beat.
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#63 Dana in Philly

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 05:24 PM

Late to the party as usual . . . 

 

I agree that the 10" is the place to go. Another feature that may not have been mentioned is the field of view.

 

The 10" with a 31 Nagler gives just over 2 degrees.

 

The 12" with a 31 Nagler gives 1.7 degrees.

 

Not a huge difference, but in terms of area of sky covered it is quite a chunk.

 

The 10" gets awfully close to being a do-it-all scope. You can get good wide field of view, do planets, deep sky . . . and do it with a package that is not going to be too heavy/difficult to deal with. Close to a sweet spot.

 

After over a decade in the hobby and about a dozen scopes, I realize that I could have seen about 99.9% of everything I have seen with a good 10" F5 and three decent eyepieces.

Hang on there -- please name those three decent eyepieces! Save us all a bunch of time and money. wink.gif


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#64 areyoukiddingme

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 08:47 PM

Hang on there -- please name those three decent eyepieces! Save us all a bunch of time and money. wink.gif

I can see two reasons to do the 10" Dob only.

 

The first reason is you have a tight budget and you are not subject to the hoarder tendencies that are common around here (alas, I do not exclude myself from that).

 

On a tight budget, I'd do used Explore Scientifics. . . should be home and hosed around $300-350.

 

24/68 low power, 11/82 medium, and a 6.7/82 for high. A 2x barlow will give you more spread for another $50.

 

Or if you got the 10" Dob b/c you are a minimalist, but want the best, get a Zambuto quartz in a Teeter.

 

31 Nagler for low, Nikon HW 17/14 for mid-power/awesomeness, and a Leica + extender for high.

 

You'd obviously have a Parcorr 2 in there too.

 

Of course, the "money saved" proposition only works if you can avoid the temptation to go to the refractor forum.


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#65 stargazer193857

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 10:31 PM

I'm thinking Meade 20mm 82 deg for low power, if you can find one used. I don't know how good they are, but the width and power combo seems nice.
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#66 GoFish

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 11:01 PM

So I checked out the links you gave me and I want to get everything from the beggining. Initially I was just thinking about the scope and maybe another eyepiece.

 

Now I see that it wouldn't be wise to order just that and then have to order different stuff again - it would mean more waiting time from observing, taxes and all that. So now I am doing my homework on what I need and it's getting rather expensive: 

 

  • Eyepieces: a 25mm Plossl is included, so I was thinking to get a 9mm and a 15mm; I'm not sure if it's worth to go with Plossls for these too or just get better quality ones right away - ones with a bigger FOV and better image quality overall. And if that's the case then it would mean about $300 more;
  • Barlow: definitely a 2x, I don't know if I need a 3x also;
  • Filters: Moon and light pollution;
  • Laser collimator
  • Books and charts

 

Another thing that I was unaware of (my bad) is that the transport fee is going to be about $150 due to the package's weight.

 

I'll have to save more money, but I should be able to buy it in just a few months. But I am certain that I will go for the 10'' Omegon.

 

So thank you for the information, you saved me a few bucks and a headache. lol.gif

The items you could delay, or skip altogether:

  • Laser collimator. A combo Cheshire/sight tube works better than an affordable laser.
  • LP filter. For visual observing I find there are too few objects that are improved by a LP filter to warrant going to the trouble. 
  • Barlow. Keep it simple and buy individual eyepieces instead. The only time I’ve used a Barlow in the last 5 years was for planetary “lucky” imaging
  • Books and charts. Instead, if you have a tablet, get SkySafari. 

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#67 aeajr

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 11:08 PM

I'm thinking Meade 20mm 82 deg for low power, if you can find one used. I don't know how good they are, but the width and power combo seems nice.

I really like mine in my 8" F5.9 and 12" F5.  I would put this on Par with the ES 82 series. 



#68 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 01:20 AM

I can see two reasons to do the 10" Dob only.

 

The first reason is you have a tight budget and you are not subject to the hoarder tendencies that are common around here (alas, I do not exclude myself from that).

 

On a tight budget, I'd do used Explore Scientifics. . . should be home and hosed around $300-350.

 

24/68 low power, 11/82 medium, and a 6.7/82 for high. A 2x barlow will give you more spread for another $50.

 

Or if you got the 10" Dob b/c you are a minimalist, but want the best, get a Zambuto quartz in a Teeter.

 

31 Nagler for low, Nikon HW 17/14 for mid-power/awesomeness, and a Leica + extender for high.

 

You'd obviously have a Parcorr 2 in there too.

 

Of course, the "money saved" proposition only works if you can avoid the temptation to go to the refractor forum.

 

I think there are several reasons to choose a 10 inch over a 12 inch for a first telescope. I think and 8 inch often is a better choice than either. 

 

- Lighter, easier to transport.

 

- Tube Dob fits in a normal car. 

 

- 10 inches is plenty of aperture for a first scope.

 

- Wider field of view than a 12 inch.

 

- More affordable.

 

Jon


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#69 areyoukiddingme

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 02:17 AM

I think there are several reasons to choose a 10 inch over a 12 inch for a first telescope. I think and 8 inch often is a better choice than either. 

 

- Lighter, easier to transport.

 

- Tube Dob fits in a normal car. 

 

- 10 inches is plenty of aperture for a first scope.

 

- Wider field of view than a 12 inch.

 

- More affordable.

 

Jon

 

The trouble for me (and I assume others) is curiosity about equipment.

 

While I feel confident in my claim that "I could have seen 99.9% of what I have with a 10" dob and three decent eyepieces", I only know that because I have tried out a lot of other options.

 

I certainly do not regret that experimentation. To the contrary, it's one of the most fun parts of the hobby.

 

But for someone who is not going to have the means to try out a ton of options, an 8" or 10" Dob will have them pretty well covered for the vast majority of objects for a very long time.

 

Choosing between an 8 and a 10, well I lean towards a 10 because it'll make the fuzzy stuff just that little bit easier to resolve--the 10" gives a solid gain 56% over the 8" for a relatively small bump in weight/manageability and cost. 


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#70 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 03:45 AM

The trouble for me (and I assume others) is curiosity about equipment.

 

While I feel confident in my claim that "I could have seen 99.9% of what I have with a 10" dob and three decent eyepieces", I only know that because I have tried out a lot of other options.

 

I certainly do not regret that experimentation. To the contrary, it's one of the most fun parts of the hobby.

 

But for someone who is not going to have the means to try out a ton of options, an 8" or 10" Dob will have them pretty well covered for the vast majority of objects for a very long time.

 

Choosing between an 8 and a 10, well I lean towards a 10 because it'll make the fuzzy stuff just that little bit easier to resolve--the 10" gives a solid gain 56% over the 8" for a relatively small bump in weight/manageability and cost. 

 

My take is quite different.  This is a first scope.  If all goes well, there may be others.  A first scope needs to be easy to use, capable enough to show the major classes of objects in good detail.  It should not be overwhelming or physically challenging so that it just sits in the corner.  In terms of Dobs, that comes down to the 8 inch versus the 10 inch.  

 

Both are capable, both are good scopes.  The 8 inch is significantly lighter and easier to manage, it's easier on eyepieces, collimation is less critical. The 10 inch is more capable.

 

As far as: "I could have seen 99.9% of what I have with a 10" dob and three decent eyepieces", that is not true for me.  Three eyepieces is not enough to see a fair amount of what I have seen with my 10 inch and I have seen many objects that are beyond the reach of a 10 inch.  But I have been doing this more than 25 years and spend a good amount of time under dark skies with relatively large scopes.

 

There is time for that. 

 

Jon


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#71 GoFish

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 08:47 AM

The increase in brightness of DSO’s is normally the stated reason for preferring 10” over 8”. While this is true, my own experience in making the jump showed that the increased resolution on Saturn and Jupiter was even more dramatic than brighter DSO’s. 

 

Observing Saturn last summer in my 10” Dob really knocked me for a loop!


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#72 darkskies14

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 09:49 AM

 

The items you could delay, or skip altogether:

  • Laser collimator. A combo Cheshire/sight tube works better than an affordable laser.
  • LP filter. For visual observing I find there are too few objects that are improved by a LP filter to warrant going to the trouble. 
  • Barlow. Keep it simple and buy individual eyepieces instead. The only time I’ve used a Barlow in the last 5 years was for planetary “lucky” imaging
  • Books and charts. Instead, if you have a tablet, get SkySafari. 

 

Thanks for the tip!



#73 darkskies14

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 09:51 AM

Ah, learning new things day by day. You guys are amazing!  I'm not going to quote every reply to thank you, so I'll use this reply for all of them.

 

THANK YOU!


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#74 25585

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 10:31 AM

I recommend a Telrad finder for your eventual choice of scope. Inexpensive and immensely useful.


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#75 stargazer193857

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 03:12 PM

My take is quite different. This is a first scope. If all goes well, there may be others. A first scope needs to be easy to use, capable enough to show the major classes of objects in good detail. It should not be overwhelming or physically challenging so that it just sits in the corner. In terms of Dobs, that comes down to the 8 inch versus the 10 inch.

Both are capable, both are good scopes. The 8 inch is significantly lighter and easier to manage, it's easier on eyepieces, collimation is less critical. The 10 inch is more capable.

As far as: "I could have seen 99.9% of what I have with a 10" dob and three decent eyepieces", that is not true for me. Three eyepieces is not enough to see a fair amount of what I have seen with my 10 inch and I have seen many objects that are beyond the reach of a 10 inch. But I have been doing this more than 25 years and spend a good amount of time under dark skies with relatively large scopes.

There is time for that.

Jon


Good point. A 12" is not a good first scope. A newbie might enjoy it, but will have nights or larger objects where a smaller scope is preferred. A 12" is better as a second scope after a 4" refractor or 8" newt. An 8-10" newt is a better first scope.

I agree the 8" is more manageable. But the difference is more noticeable if you lifting them as one piece. If one is willing to make 2 trips, I would go with the 10". F6 optics have their benefits though.
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