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Is it worth the money to get an extra scope?

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#1 Freakshow

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 03:26 PM

Assumption:

1)  visual and astrophotography.

2)  live in a Bortle 8 but can travel to Bortle 2 an hour and a half away 

 

Let us suppose I own:

Celestron Ultima 11" SCT

ETX90 Mak-Cass

7" Mak-Cass

SkyWatcher 190 Mak-Newt

Takahashi Epsilon-180 ED Newt

22" dobsonian,

Televue NP101is Petzval APO refractor

Astrotech 152EDT triplet APO refractor

CEM-60 on a portable pier

 

Would there be any value to acquiring 

1) Williams Optics Star71 mkII Petzval APO

2) Takahashi FC-76DS fluorite doublet

3) 100mm fl doublet (Vixen 102S/Tak FC-100DZ)

4) SkyWatcher Esprit 120ED

5) AstroTech AT92

 

If you had to, what would you sell in the first list as redundant to buy the new refractor?

 

What scope is missing that any of the above cannot do within 97% of optical quality and ease of use?  No scope over $5,000 to be considered



#2 Astrojensen

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 03:34 PM

An odd question, I'd say. You already have a lot of scopes, so you must have a fairly good idea of their individual strengths and weaknesses, which allow you to make a choice based on what you think you're missing and what you can sell. 

 

If you DON'T have a good idea of their strengths and weaknesses, you've got a few year's worth of observing to do. I don't really see any major problems in your current setup list. 

 

 

Clear skies!

Thomas, Denmark


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#3 Shorty Barlow

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 03:43 PM

Maybe a big pair of binoculars?


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#4 Wildetelescope

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 03:43 PM

Ummm, I think your current line up has things covered.  lol.gif   Not sure any of the new stuff you cite would bring any thing new.  That said, there is nothing wrong with getting a scope, just because you want one, assuming you can afford the expense.   This is a hobby, and should be fun.  I would never encourage anyone to be fiscally irresponsible.   But if your situation is such where you have sufficient resources and enjoy collecting an using different optics, then go for it.   

 

Cheers!

 

jmd 



#5 Freakshow

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 04:02 PM

I am mainly interested in a 70ish refractor for super wide and I think the WO Star71 or Cat71 will be a winner.  The reason I bring up the fluorites is the Tak fanboys almost have me convinced they are magical.  The SW 120Ed & AT92 are completely redundant I think, but everyone says they are great scopes.  The binos though....WO pegasus!!  Anyone who has them going to a star party?!  I travel the whole country for work.


Edited by Freakshow, 09 February 2020 - 04:23 PM.


#6 sg6

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 04:04 PM

The Televue NP101is APO refractor and Astrotech 152EDT triplet APO would cover the last 3 ideas.

 

And I suspect they would be a fair match to the WO Star 71 and Tak FC-76DS.

 

The only aspect the WO and Tak offer would be a slightly wider field , but I doubt it would really be of benefit or even use.

 

The WO Star 71 says discontinued, the replacement seems destined to be their Redcat 71, when it appears.

 

So keep what you have I cannot see you gain anything by 3 of the ideas and also nothing great other then a bit wider but smaller image in the 71 and 76.


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#7 Luca Brasi

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 04:22 PM

I don't see any binoculars or binoscopes in your set up?

#8 Jeff L

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 04:30 PM

You should add some night vision binos


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#9 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 04:41 PM

An odd question, I'd say. You already have a lot of scopes, so you must have a fairly good idea of their individual strengths and weaknesses, which allow you to make a choice based on what you think you're missing and what you can sell. 

 

If you DON'T have a good idea of their strengths and weaknesses, you've got a few year's worth of observing to do. I don't really see any major problems in your current setup list. 

 

 

Clear skies!

Thomas, Denmark

 

I agree.  

 

Freakshow:  Are you spending 500 hours plus per year actually using the equipment?  it seems to me there's plenty of equipment there to keep you occupied. 

 

jon


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#10 Scott in NC

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 04:50 PM

I agree with everything that's been said.  You've got a great lineup.  No, it would not be "worth the money" (whatever that means) to get anything new, from a purely objective sense.  But this is a hobby, and some people really like buying and selling so that they can try out new gear every so often.  I'm like that.  This hobby is supposed to be fun, and if that's part of what makes the hobby fun for you, and you can do so without becoming fiscally irresponsible, then go for it!


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#11 Gregory2012

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 05:06 PM

Hi,

 

I'm' sorry, but for me a critical comment is needed. Please, it is not to be considered an insult, just what I have learned for myself over my 20 years at this endeavor.

 

Going beyond what you have for me suggests some one who can't be satisfied. Always in need of some thing else. Your line-up is more than most want or have and should be satisfying you. If not, get a mirror, not another telescope.

 

I used to own tons of gear, but over the years I have fine tuned that down to equipment that works for my needs. And that turned out to be more comfortable. I no longer felt the need to change out scopes in the middle of the night, for different but similar views. Wide, narrow, deep or shallow, eventually it all melds into one spectacular view. I am now satisfied with my one scope and it's accessories. Life is easier, at night.

 

You have a lot to be thankful for and yet you want more.

Personal thoughts only. please don't take offense.

Gregory Gig Harbor, WA.


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#12 Tyson M

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 05:21 PM

Although I agree with above comments, I will dig in more to exactly what your asking.

 

Your NP101, for visual or imaging makes virtually that entire new list of refractors redundant.  If you are heavy into imaging, then refractors of various focal lengths make sense to frame certain objects.

 

Your current robust mounting situation (if your only mount), essentially means everything from the new list of potential scopes (except for the Espirit 120) is overmounted for visual and likely imaging. 

 

I would get a lighter alt az mount (like an SV M2) to use the NP101 more first and foremost if I were you, if your main goal is to get out more with a gng set up.  It appears to be the only thing you're really missing.

 

I don't think you need any of the listed scopes unless you have specific targets and a specific focal length in mind.  And I doubt you need a specific focal length as you have quite a range already covered with an NP101, Takahashi Epsilon-180 ED Newt, 190MN, 152 apo refractor, and even that C11 can be reduced and go deep with good P.A and guiding.

 

If you had a smaller EQ mount the Williams Optics Star71 mkII Petzval APO may be useful for imaging ultra wide fields, or an alt az mount like a SV M1 mount for backpack observing. 


Edited by Tyson M, 09 February 2020 - 08:59 PM.

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#13 mikeDnight

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 05:35 PM

I have very simple needs and would happily sell all from the first list, with the exception of the very specialist NP101, which in an ideal world I'd keep for its amazing wide, flat field views. 

 

My choice from the second list would be the Takahashi FC100DZ, which I'd use for lunar and planetary. 

 

The NP101 has the advantage of offering the finest space walk experience, where as the FC100DZ will deliver laser etched lunar & planetary views. Although each can give pleasing views of both kinds of targets, each has a very noticeable advantage over the other, and so will complement eachother beautifully. Attatch a camera to either (not that i would), and you'll get superb images.

 

Are these scopes worth the money? I'd say most definitely "yes!"


Edited by mikeDnight, 09 February 2020 - 05:39 PM.


#14 25585

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 05:49 PM

Tak FSQ85? Good telephoto lens & portable refractor for rich field viewing & imaging.

 

A 91mm Redcat would be cheaper though. 

 

I understand being on quests....



#15 exhogflyer

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 06:23 PM

Don't buy anything more. Nothing. Please, you have enough to keep a club busy for a while. Stop spending money on scopes. Go buy a few eyepieces and a nice van to haul them around in.


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#16 LDW47

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 06:24 PM

I am mainly interested in a 70ish refractor for super wide and I think the WO Star71 or Cat71 will be a winner.  The reason I bring up the fluorites is the Tak fanboys almost have me convinced they are magical.  The SW 120Ed & AT92 are completely redundant I think, but everyone says they are great scopes.  The binos though....WO pegasus!!  Anyone who has them going to a star party?!  I travel the whole country for work.

I would just get something, if you haven’t already, with FPL53 rather than Fluorite glass !  Clear Skies ! 



#17 Eddgie

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 06:24 PM

If that is your lineup, like Astronjenson, one would think you would have enough experience with different instruments to make that decision for yourself.  

 

If you have money to burn though, the two suggestions that I would second would be either a really good  astronomy binocular with right angle eyepeice holders or an image intensified eyepiece.

 

If you can manage them, I like Shorty Barlow's recommedation. there are few things that give the visceral impact as the wide field of view in a big astronomy binocular. Now that would be a visual use only kind of purchase so if it has to do both, then the binocular is off the table.

 

Jeff L makes another good recommendation. The image intensifier can be used to image with, but the primary appeal is the visual capability.   One of our CN members has a 30" dob, and he tells me that his purchase of an image intensifier was well worth it.  When you read that form someone that is using a 30" telescope, it has to mean something.  We now have over 50 people on CN doing image intensified astronomy. It is in your budget and you can image with it but it is more like "EAA" imaging with very short exposures.  For visual observing though, it will allow you to see things from your light polluted location that you can't see from dark skies.

 

I just don't see any value in adding any of these other scopes though unless you are having trouble lifting your Televue NP101. None of these scopes would be much of a compliment to the uber capable Televue.  If you don't have the reducer for it though, spend some money on that.


Edited by Eddgie, 09 February 2020 - 06:28 PM.


#18 LDW47

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 06:28 PM

You appear to have it all now so be like many of us, just buy something ! You really don’t have to pose any questions, lol !  Clear Skies !



#19 Freakshow

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 06:58 PM

A couple things...I live in Las Vegas and want to sell quality astro images in a gallery on the strip.  Large images say 3 by 5 feet on special paper.  As such some images will come from Bortle 8, and some from Bortle 2 just down the road.  Some scopes travel, some stay put.

 

I also am a collector.  It would be nice to show visitors to the gallery different types of scopes--Mak, Sct, refractor, and reflector.  

 

Visual observing is hard for me because my eyes have a ghosting and streaking problem at night.  When I naked eye look at the moon I see 5 of them.  I won't bore you with my eyepiece collection, but you (and uncle Al) would really like them I think. 

 

I do not own the dob yet, but a 22" obsession is on my bucket list. 



#20 RadioAstronomer

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 08:26 PM

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#21 Freakshow

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 08:57 PM

I would love a tak, like the FSQ106EDX4, but the added expense of Tak specific reducers and adapters turn me off.  I have never looked/imaged through a Tak refractor but I think the extra "magic" that scope would bring over the NP101is is not worth the significant extra cost.  Thank you everybody for your thoughtful replies.



#22 tog

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Posted 10 February 2020 - 10:06 AM

You can't have too many scopes!



#23 Astrojensen

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Posted 10 February 2020 - 11:45 AM

You can't have too many scopes!

No, but your house can get too small. Ask me how I know...

 

 

Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark


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#24 tog

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Posted 10 February 2020 - 04:47 PM

No, but your house can get too small. Ask me how I know...

 

 

Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark

Yes! 



#25 kel123

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Posted 11 February 2020 - 08:40 PM

A widefield refractor is certainly missing from your setup. So you can consider the Williams Optics frac.

You can sell one of the Mak-Cass or any other one you use less often.
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