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Stellarvue SV80 Access is back

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#151 Moondust

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Posted 06 January 2020 - 04:28 PM

UPS delivery now scheduled for thursday, this is a late Christmas present to myself. I'm really curious to see just how good this scope is with all the positive talk on CloudyNights regarding the SV80A and the entire now discontinued Access line. So far this feels like a really good purchase. It could even be one of those really rare purchases where if circumstances years down the road should warrant selling the scope you could possibly get most or all your money back.  I've lost my shirt on too many scopes over the years so a smart no brainer purchase like this doesn't happen very often. smile.gif


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#152 Moondust

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Posted 09 January 2020 - 04:57 PM

My new SV80A arrived today and I was happy to see the shipping box arrive in fine shape. Upon opening the box everything was well packed and looked to be in perfect condition, but there was no owners manual or anything else as I've seen in other photos here. No big deal though, I think I know how to work this thing. The focuser seems a little stiff but it will probably smooth out some with use and I admit I'm a bit spoiled with the feather touch on my Stowaway. I love the weight of this thing, just right! It rides perfectly on my Porta Mount 2 and fit's perfectly in my old black Traveler Tenba bag. I had an AT102ED before this and it didn't fare so well on the Porta Mount. Of course it's cloudy with rain and snow is in the forecast but I was able to get some really good first impressions with indoor viewing on a dollar bill and also was able to get an artificial star off some objects I had set up inside. I've done this many times with my other scopes and it's a good indicator of what to expect at night outdoors. Contrast and sharpness on the dollar bill were really good and I can tell from the artifical star, collimation is spot on. I got a really tight airy disk surrounded by a perfect diffraction ring. In and out of focus showed perfectly round fresnel rings, more defined on one side but I was thrilled to see rings on the other side as well and not just mush as in a lot of other scopes. CA seems well under control, perhaps not as good as a triplet but still really really good. Noticably better than my recent AT102ED which wasn't that bad and on par or slightly better than my AT72 ED2 with fpl-53. I'll know more once I get a chance to view the moon or some street lights but so far I'm very happy with this little scope and the price was unbeatable. I think I may have gotten the very last one too, #323 smile.gif


Edited by Moondust, 10 January 2020 - 10:17 AM.

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#153 divers

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Posted 09 January 2020 - 08:28 PM

mine is scheduled for delivery tomorrow....


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#154 Paul Hooper

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Posted 09 January 2020 - 09:32 PM

Mine came today!  Looks great and seems to fit on my M1V and Manfrotto tripod well (similar to gmoney’s setup but a medium duty tripod).  Sorry, Moondust, it is #326.  Of course, we have bad weather for the next couple of days, but hopefully I can do some terrestrial during the day this weekend.


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#155 divers

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Posted 10 January 2020 - 05:37 PM

Serial #325!in the house.


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#156 divers

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Posted 10 January 2020 - 09:08 PM

So I tried installed the field flattener/reducer and the thread size does not match my t-ring.  Help?

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#157 divers

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Posted 10 January 2020 - 09:09 PM

Another

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#158 eros312

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Posted 11 January 2020 - 10:53 AM

You need a regular 42mm t adaptor. The one you have is a wide 48mm.


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#159 NYJohn S

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Posted 11 January 2020 - 04:34 PM

I didn't know they came in 2 sizes. I checked mine and it is in fact 42mm. Good to know, I was just going to order the field flattener/reducer



#160 Moondust

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Posted 12 January 2020 - 01:13 PM

A few shots of my new SV80 Access resting comfortably on a modified Porta Mount 2 with home made tripod. Solid combo!  

 

sv1.jpg

 

sv2aa.jpg


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#161 ken30809

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Posted 12 January 2020 - 01:30 PM

A few shots of my new SV80 Access resting comfortably on a modified Porta Mount 2 with home made tripod. Solid combo!

attachicon.gifsv1.jpg

attachicon.gifsv2aa.jpg

Really nice set up!!!


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#162 gmoney

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Posted 12 January 2020 - 03:50 PM

A few shots of my new SV80 Access resting comfortably on a modified Porta Mount 2 with home made tripod. Solid combo!

sv1.jpg

sv2aa.jpg


Looks good!
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#163 laedco58

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Posted 13 January 2020 - 12:27 PM

Looks good!


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#164 Moondust

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Posted 26 January 2020 - 10:51 PM

I finally got a chance to take the SV80 Access outside under the stars. It was cold outside but much warmer than it has been,  so I put on my coat and hat and endured the elements. Trained on Capella I saw that the in and out of focus pattern was shimmering wildly, obviously from the scope going from my warm house straight outdoors. I went back inside to warm up but left the scope set up on the Porta Mount and waited approximately 30 mins before going back out to try it once more. Focusing again on Capella things had improved tremendously so I decided to do a real star test this time using my Tak 3.3 TOE giving a power of 170x. I admit that I'm no expert in the star test department, but know enough that when the fresnel rings are perfectly round and are nearly the same inside and outside of focus that it's a very good thing and a rather rare thing in my 50 years experience, but that is what I saw. I was very impressed with the star test, I think I may have really lucked out with this scope. It was starting to get colder and the wind was starting to pick up so before shutting it all down for the night I got a quick view of the usual winter showcases such as Pleiades and the Orion Nebula. All beautiful sites, stars reduced to tiny points and color differences were obvious, just what I was expecting after the excellent star test. 

            I like this scope quite a bit better than my recent AT102 ED, it has much better color correction, better star test, slightly better contrast, a wider field, handles much much better on my Porta Mount and in my humble opinion is a classier looking scope. I miss the brightness advantage of the AT102 ED somewhat but not enough to make up for the rest of its shotcomings compared to the Stellarvue. The SV80A also has noticably better color correction than my AT72ED with FPL-53 glass and surprisingly stomps it in contrast. The contrast of the SV80A is not too far behind that of my 92mm Stowaway. Color correction though excellent in the SV80 falls a bit short of the Stowaway as to be expected being a triplet. What really impressed me though was that the star test of my SV80 Access reminded me of what I get in my Stowaway, they are somewhat similar. I look forward to getting them both out this Spring and Summer and doing a side by side on the moon and planets with the Stowaway stopped down to 80mm for a more fair comparison. From daylight comparisons I performed on a nice day we had a few weeks ago I have no doubt the Stowaway will take the crown as it should for the huge price difference (although a substantial portion of the Stowaways higher cost is in the Feather Touch focuser, Roland said it cost him $800), but I have to give the win for better purchase for the money to the SV80 Access. Hard to believe that I got a scope of this caliber for just $500. It's a scope I feel comfortable using. I don't have to worry about it or baby it so much like the Stowaway and the weight reduction from the Stowaway is a nice change of pace. I'm much more likely to grab this and take it outside for some day time terrestial observing than the Stowaway and for that purpose I don't feel I'd be giving up a thing whereas in the case of the AT102 ED and AT72 ED I always felt that I was, because of large contrast or color correction differences. Now that I have the Stellarvue am I selling the Stowaway any time soon?  Fat chance!  I waited 19 years on the waiting list for it so they'll have to try to yank it from my cold dead hands! But truthfully in the long run, I think l just may have more fun with this excellent little SV80A.      


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#165 divers

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 06:20 AM

Glad you like yours.  Mine has also found a nice home. 

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#166 F.Meiresonne

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 07:13 AM

Yes these are really nice scopes. I have the TS version.

 

Virtual without any color...very nice optics

 

Works well for AP too, no blue halo's around the stars.

I found the 102 mm just great, not too heavy , not too long, still descent aperture for a refractor , fine for AP, great focusser...nice CNC machining.

 

Versatile scope. I have it since May last year and I am still thrilled by it.


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#167 ken30809

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 06:51 PM

That is great news. Congratulations, I too am very impressed with my Access scope. Great mechanics and the optics are extremely good. My initial star test was great and the views last year of Jupiter and Saturn were 5 star. Clear skies!


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#168 stevew

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Posted 04 February 2020 - 01:20 AM

Does anyone know if these are sold out yet?



#169 mrsjeff

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Posted 04 February 2020 - 06:31 AM

Does anyone know if these are sold out yet?


Yes, they are sold out.

#170 laedco58

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Posted 05 February 2020 - 11:41 AM

I endured the +3F temps last night as the clouds finally parted. The seeing was not that great but the views through my SV80A were. The moon with a 4.7 ethos was impressive. Also spent some time observing M 42 with a 8 ethos. This is a cool little scope, I really like it.


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#171 Moondust

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Posted 05 February 2020 - 03:31 PM

At last I had a chance for 2 consecutive nights to compare my new SV80A to my Astro-Physics 92mm Stowaway. My target was the nearly first quarter moon unusually well placed high in the sky with good seeing. I used the Stowaway both at its full  92mm aperture and also for a more fair test at 78mm using a precut mask and for my own curiosity at 60mm. I know this is not really an apples to apples comparison with the huge price difference between these 2 scopes but I was curious to see what I was really giving up optics wise with a scope I had only paid $500 for vs one that was more than 7 times the cost. There is no question the Stowaway is the better built scope with a beefier and more refined focuser etc but I am certainly impressed with the build of the SV80A and the lighter tube weight is truely refreshing.

               Most of the time I was using either my 4mm KK ortho or my Tak TOE 3.3 eyepiece with a Tele-vue Everbrite diagonal and tried to match magnifications as closely as possible with various eyepieces and barlow. I spent a good hour going back and forth between the 2 scopes. My concluding observations on the moon were that the Stowaway has noticably better contrast, more than I had first thought through previous daytime viewing session comparisons. Color correction is also noticably better in the triplet as would be expected and when the Stowaway was working at f/7.8 at 78mm it wasn't quite fair to the SV80A at f/7. But then again at 92mm the Stowaway was working at f/6.5 where the color correction was near perfect. I noticed the image was just a tad brighter in the Stowaway at 78mm, if this had to do with coatings I'm not sure. Also details were just sharper and easier to pick out in the stopped down Stowaway. With the SV80A I had to strain harder and tweak with the focuser an miniscule amount to get that dead on focus. Tiny craterlets and fine detail just stood out better in the Stowaway and the palette of shadings of gray on the lunar surface were more striking making it seem almost 3D like as if you were right there. At 92mm the Stowaway pulled further away and I was able to use slightly higher magnification for an even better view. 

             Nonetheless after this comparison I came away feeling extremely happy with what the SV80A was capable of showing on target luna. If the SV80A view had equaled or nearly equaled that of the Stowaway I would have felt cheated after waiting more than 19 years on the AP waiting list, but the SV80A presented itself quit well. It trounces my AT72 ED2 and though the image may not be as bright as in my recent AT102ED, I feel it puts up a more pleasing image for the moon and planets. It matches my Vixen 80mf detail wise but with much better contrast and color correction and handles tons better on my Porta Mount 2. The Stowaway is a nice little scope (though heavy and expensive for its size) and I am even more impressed with it now after this little shootout, in fact I would go as far as to say I even preferred the 60mm Stowaway view over that of the SV80A, but no way is the image it produces even at 92mm seven times or arguably even 2 times better than that of the SV80A! I guess scopes are just like esoteric stereo equipment. Audiophiles are willing to pay a ton for that last ounce of audio nirvana. For $500 or even at its original $700 price tag which many people paid, the SV80A it is a fine scope and does not embarrass itself even against premium apo refractors. I've had a ton of different telescopes during my lifetime. Over the last 50 plus years I've owned toylike Gilbert 2.4" reflectors and Tascos to a monster Edmund 4" f/15 refractor, Celestron C8, several Vixens, Meade ETX's 5" and 3.5, several Astro Techs including the excellent Thomas Back designed AT111ED to expensive 3.5 Questars, Quantum 4, Lomo refractors and TEC 6 to even more expensive but now all long gone (except for the recent 92mm Stowaway)  Astro-Physics 155, 140, 130 both f8.3 and 6.3 plus 105 Traveler. At this stage in my life I could easily be happy with just this SV80A and this is something I could not say for a lot of the more recent scopes I've had. The build quality is exemplary and the optics though they may not be the very best money can buy are still excellent and for the price of the scope, especially at the liquidation price I paid you feel that you have gotten one of those bargains that don't come around very often in a lifetime. If I ever had to sell the Stowaway for some reason I'm sure I'd miss it some but I'd get over it quickly. I don't do astrophotography and as I stated before the lighter weight of the SV80A is a genuine blessing. I am sure other owners are just as thrilled with theirs and I feel rather lucky that I was able to snatch up one of the very last ones.    


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#172 RNSpeed

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Posted 05 February 2020 - 09:01 PM

At last I had a chance for 2 consecutive nights to compare my new SV80A to my Astro-Physics 92mm Stowaway. My target was the nearly first quarter moon unusually well placed high in the sky with good seeing. I used the Stowaway both at its full  92mm aperture and also for a more fair test at 78mm using a precut mask and for my own curiosity at 60mm. I know this is not really an apples to apples comparison with the huge price difference between these 2 scopes but I was curious to see what I was really giving up optics wise with a scope I had only paid $500 for vs one that was more than 7 times the cost. There is no question the Stowaway is the better built scope with a beefier and more refined focuser etc but I am certainly impressed with the build of the SV80A and the lighter tube weight is truely refreshing.

               Most of the time I was using either my 4mm KK ortho or my Tak TOE 3.3 eyepiece with a Tele-vue Everbrite diagonal and tried to match magnifications as closely as possible with various eyepieces and barlow. I spent a good hour going back and forth between the 2 scopes. My concluding observations on the moon were that the Stowaway has noticably better contrast, more than I had first thought through previous daytime viewing session comparisons. Color correction is also noticably better in the triplet as would be expected and when the Stowaway was working at f/7.8 at 78mm it wasn't quite fair to the SV80A at f/7. But then again at 92mm the Stowaway was working at f/6.5 where the color correction was near perfect. I noticed the image was just a tad brighter in the Stowaway at 78mm, if this had to do with coatings I'm not sure. Also details were just sharper and easier to pick out in the stopped down Stowaway. With the SV80A I had to strain harder and tweak with the focuser an miniscule amount to get that dead on focus. Tiny craterlets and fine detail just stood out better in the Stowaway and the palette of shadings of gray on the lunar surface were more striking making it seem almost 3D like as if you were right there. At 92mm the Stowaway pulled further away and I was able to use slightly higher magnification for an even better view. 

             Nonetheless after this comparison I came away feeling extremely happy with what the SV80A was capable of showing on target luna. If the SV80A view had equaled or nearly equaled that of the Stowaway I would have felt cheated after waiting more than 19 years on the AP waiting list, but the SV80A presented itself quit well. It trounces my AT72 ED2 and though the image may not be as bright as in my recent AT102ED, I feel it puts up a more pleasing image for the moon and planets. It matches my Vixen 80mf detail wise but with much better contrast and color correction and handles tons better on my Porta Mount 2. The Stowaway is a nice little scope (though heavy and expensive for its size) and I am even more impressed with it now after this little shootout, in fact I would go as far as to say I even preferred the 60mm Stowaway view over that of the SV80A, but no way is the image it produces even at 92mm seven times or arguably even 2 times better than that of the SV80A! I guess scopes are just like esoteric stereo equipment. Audiophiles are willing to pay a ton for that last ounce of audio nirvana. For $500 or even at its original $700 price tag which many people paid, the SV80A it is a fine scope and does not embarrass itself even against premium apo refractors. I've had a ton of different telescopes during my lifetime. Over the last 50 plus years I've owned toylike Gilbert 2.4" reflectors and Tascos to a monster Edmund 4" f/15 refractor, Celestron C8, several Vixens, Meade ETX's 5" and 3.5, several Astro Techs including the excellent Thomas Back designed AT111ED to expensive 3.5 Questars, Quantum 4, Lomo refractors and TEC 6 to even more expensive but now all long gone (except for the recent 92mm Stowaway)  Astro-Physics 155, 140, 130 both f8.3 and 6.3 plus 105 Traveler. At this stage in my life I could easily be happy with just this SV80A and this is something I could not say for a lot of the more recent scopes I've had. The build quality is exemplary and the optics though they may not be the very best money can buy are still excellent and for the price of the scope, especially at the liquidation price I paid you feel that you have gotten one of those bargains that don't come around very often in a lifetime. If I ever had to sell the Stowaway for some reason I'm sure I'd miss it some but I'd get over it quickly. I don't do astrophotography and as I stated before the lighter weight of the SV80A is a genuine blessing. I am sure other owners are just as thrilled with theirs and I feel rather lucky that I was able to snatch up one of the very last ones.    

Wow your review makes me feel pumped with the telescope. Im glad I jumped in to buy the telescope when it was on sale!


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#173 stevew

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Posted 05 February 2020 - 09:17 PM

Yes, they are sold out.

Thank goodness. The temptation is gone.

Congratulations to all that have received them. 


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#174 laedco58

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Posted 06 February 2020 - 10:34 AM

Moondust,

Nice review. Your mention of audiophiles gave me a little giggle, as this is the refractor forum, and a lot of posters in this forum seem more obsessed about specifications and test data of their telescopes, than actually observing with them. Music lovers listen to the music, audiophiles listen to their gear.


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#175 Jdrasberry

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Posted 06 February 2020 - 09:03 PM

Thank goodness. The temptation is gone.

Congratulations to all that have received them. 

What, The temptation is gone? What about all the used ones that are coming on the market? I know as much as I love my SV80 Access that I got back in November, that I’m definitely saving up money for a SVX triplet lens that Vic has made himself!  I have been impressed by the reviews on the new SVX triplets!

 

Joe


Edited by Jdrasberry, 06 February 2020 - 09:05 PM.

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