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Sky-Watcher ESPRIT 120ED Super APO

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#1 khursh

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Posted 21 June 2020 - 12:12 PM

Good morning,

 

I am writing a review of this refractor after about a week of almost non-stop use. I started my refractor journey with the very worthy Orion EON 120ED Doublet and was super happy for almost 2 years of use, but as its a doublet, once I started doing astrophotography I was not happy with the stars. I needed a triplet.

 

So started my quest for the holy grail: a reasonably priced, high performing refractor. As I was used to using a 120mm scope already, I felt that the 120-130mm range was the sweet spot of light grasp without being a tank (and a drag to use). I really want a 6 inch, but I would never use it. The contenders were the AT130EDT, the ESPRIT, and a TS-Optics 130. I ruled out because of cost but would be thrilled to have - the NP127is, the TEC 140, a StarFire 130GTX, etc. Ultimately, I went with the Esprit because of the lack of much bad to say about it from others. The AT130 is truly a great value, but I was a little worried about the focuser. I'm sure I would have been happy with the TSO scope, but nervous about European delivery. The ES 127 was ruled out pretty early as the reviews were pretty iffy. I have only one negative about the ESPRIT and that is its weight. Its a porker, but because its only a 120, I can still one-hand it with the Pegasus FocusCube and ASI533 attached.

 

Here is an image of M101 with the Orion EON

get.jpg?insecure

Not Terrible, but big stars

 

And here is my NGC 6946

get.jpg?insecure

Just better star color and size.

 

Clear Skies everyone!


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#2 DSOs4Me

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Posted 21 June 2020 - 01:09 PM

The 120 Esprit has been on my Radar for about a year now and I think I might pull the trigger the next sale they have. Good Luck with it waytogo.gif



#3 RichA

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Posted 21 June 2020 - 06:40 PM

Good morning,

 

I am writing a review of this refractor after about a week of almost non-stop use. I started my refractor journey with the very worthy Orion EON 120ED Doublet and was super happy for almost 2 years of use, but as its a doublet, once I started doing astrophotography I was not happy with the stars. I needed a triplet.

 

So started my quest for the holy grail: a reasonably priced, high performing refractor. As I was used to using a 120mm scope already, I felt that the 120-130mm range was the sweet spot of light grasp without being a tank (and a drag to use). I really want a 6 inch, but I would never use it. The contenders were the AT130EDT, the ESPRIT, and a TS-Optics 130. I ruled out because of cost but would be thrilled to have - the NP127is, the TEC 140, a StarFire 130GTX, etc. Ultimately, I went with the Esprit because of the lack of much bad to say about it from others. The AT130 is truly a great value, but I was a little worried about the focuser. I'm sure I would have been happy with the TSO scope, but nervous about European delivery. The ES 127 was ruled out pretty early as the reviews were pretty iffy. I have only one negative about the ESPRIT and that is its weight. Its a porker, but because its only a 120, I can still one-hand it with the Pegasus FocusCube and ASI533 attached.

 

Here is an image of M101 with the Orion EON

get.jpg?insecure

Not Terrible, but big stars

 

And here is my NGC 6946

get.jpg?insecure

Just better star color and size.

 

Clear Skies everyone!

Definitely an improvement.  I've rarely seen any refractor images that had zero blue fringe on brighter stars.  To do that, you need a pure reflecting system like an RC.



#4 telfish

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 08:23 AM

I have had mine for two weeks and am delighted with it. I narrowed my choice down to the same 3 scopes and decided on the Esprit for the same reasons you did. The only issue I have is the lack of anywhere to easily attach a focuser motor bracket to the nice flat area under the focuser. I am designing a printed plate for that.


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#5 khursh

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 08:50 AM

I managed to attach a FocusCube 2 to mine. It's a stretch, but it works



#6 telfish

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 10:04 AM

I managed to attach a FocusCube 2 to mine. It's a stretch, but it works

Which holes did you use cause the inner grub screw ones are not to be used according to SW, they advised the 4 main bolts at each corner. For now I am using a clamp on the round part where the focus knob as situated which works .but is not ideal . it's a pity they did not do two tapped blind holes down the center line.


Edited by telfish, 22 June 2020 - 10:04 AM.


#7 khursh

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 11:32 AM

I used the outer two. The adapter to the focuser shaft is pulled out a smidge.



#8 Marcelofig

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 03:24 PM

Which holes did you use cause the inner grub screw ones are not to be used according to SW, they advised the 4 main bolts at each corner. For now I am using a clamp on the round part where the focus knob as situated which works .but is not ideal . it's a pity they did not do two tapped blind holes down the center line.

 

I installed the FocusCube 2 on my Esprit 100 (I think it's the same focuser) and it works perfectly well. Here is what holes to use:

 

https://www.cloudyni...-esprit-120-ed/

 

Note that the screws provided are very short (at least in my unit, mid last year) and I had to replace them with longer ones. I used these:

 

https://www.amazon.c...0?ie=UTF8&psc=1



#9 telfish

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 03:34 PM

I installed the FocusCube 2 on my Esprit 100 (I think it's the same focuser) and it works perfectly well. Here is what holes to use:

 

https://www.cloudyni...-esprit-120-ed/

 

Note that the screws provided are very short (at least in my unit, mid last year) and I had to replace them with longer ones. I used these:

 

https://www.amazon.c...0?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Thanks That confirms SW tech help. I will do a bracket for the EAF.



#10 RodrigoQ

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 09:39 AM

Good Morning Gentlemen.

 

I'm reading a lot of information related to this telescope because I've take the decision to pull the trigger a buy my first ever big telescope! I did astrophotography with a Nikon unmod FullFrame Sensor and a Tamron 150-600mm and a WO Redcat 51 on an iOptron Skyguider but I feel I reach the limit with my actual setup. I would like reach you experience looking for an advice, right now I'm struggling between two Telescopes : SW ESPRIT 120ED  and SW ESPRIT 100ED. The main purpose of this telescope will be imaging starting with my full frame DSLR but in a couple of months probably I'll acquire my first CCD camera. I want to use this telescope to imaging nebula and main DSO but my main concern is related to the FOV and accessories. Because I have a FullFrame DSLR Camera I don't know if the flattener included with the SW telescopes will work with my camera or I need to look for another one. And talking about FOV between this two telescopes the difference is huge based on a FOV Calculators. Which one do you guys pick??

 

Thank you so much for your help and I'll appreciate your comments and comments.



#11 telfish

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 09:51 AM

Hi Rodrigo.

 

I went with the 120 for flexibility. I can shoot at the full FL of 840 @ F7 . or with the 0.8 x reducer  FL of 672 @ 5.6 Or with the Starizona .63 reducer FL 529 @ F4.4

 

So I get a scope that will do from Galaxy imaging to wider than the 100 and faster for DSO's

 

Either one should work with a FF sensor  with the supplied FF


Edited by telfish, 02 July 2020 - 11:28 AM.

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#12 khursh

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 11:13 AM

I also chose the 120 because of the flexibility. My preference is for galaxy imaging, though I do nebulae as well, so I wanted the largest manageable aperture. I mostly shoot at f7.


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#13 RodrigoQ

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 12:24 PM

Hi Rodrigo.
 
I went with the 120 for flexibility. I can shoot at the full FL of 840 @ F7 . or with the 0.8 x reducer  FL of 672 @ 5.6 Or with the Starizona .63 reducer FL 529 @ F4.4
 
So I get a scope that will do from Galaxy imaging to wider than the 100 and faster for DSO's
 
Either one should work with a FF sensor  with the supplied FF

Hi Telfish, Thank you for your fast reply!! I really appreciate it. It was a very technical reply and I like it ! This is the kind of arguments I was looking for. I get confused when I saw the FOV simulator and saw that DSO like M42 fit almost in all the Full Frame Sensor but using reducers almost fix the issue. I got confused  because I didn't know about all the accessories and I tough I need a special Field Flattener - Reducer just because my camera is a Full Frame. Recently i got the EQ6R - PRO and look like is a perfect match with the SW ESPRIT 120 ED. Do you think should be a wise move when I go for the CCD camera go for a APC-S sensor or keep working on Full Frame sensor. For sure I know the size of the sensor affect the FOV. In this point I really appreciate your knowledge and your comments are more than welcome.

 

Thank you again!


Edited by RodrigoQ, 02 July 2020 - 12:28 PM.


#14 RodrigoQ

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 12:36 PM

I also chose the 120 because of the flexibility. My preference is for galaxy imaging, though I do nebulae as well, so I wanted the largest manageable aperture. I mostly shoot at f7.

You are the second person talking about the flexibility of this telescope and that is a really important feature I didn't consider at the beginning . Every second I saw that if I went for the SW ESPRIT 100ED I will be short handed just because the 100 is FOV is wider than I expected. I tough that using an APC-S camera I recover some FOV but that it implies invest more money in cameras and I want to start using my actual gear. Another reason I'm gopint for the 120 ED is because bring a lot of accessories to start and that's amazing!  Thank you so much for your comment and bring the flexibility as feature of this telescope. Looks like the one to pick is the 120. I just need to take a look on my pocket and verify if I have all the funds! This is a really big shot and I want to make it right since the beginning.

 

Thank you for your comment!



#15 telfish

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 01:02 PM

Hi Telfish, Thank you for your fast reply!! I really appreciate it. It was a very technical reply and I like it ! This is the kind of arguments I was looking for. I get confused when I saw the FOV simulator and saw that DSO like M42 fit almost in all the Full Frame Sensor but using reducers almost fix the issue. I got confused  because I didn't know about all the accessories and I tough I need a special Field Flattener - Reducer just because my camera is a Full Frame. Recently i got the EQ6R - PRO and look like is a perfect match with the SW ESPRIT 120 ED. Do you think should be a wise move when I go for the CCD camera go for a APC-S sensor or keep working on Full Frame sensor. For sure I know the size of the sensor affect the FOV. In this point I really appreciate your knowledge and your comments are more than welcome.

 

Thank you again!

There is a big price jump between an APSC sensor camera and full frame. I have an 071 APSC and a 533 11 mm x 11 mm sensor and I find both work fine with the scope. I put money into reducers so I have a lot of options image scale wise . Plus with the great QE of the newer Cmos cameras you can do a two panel mosaic in not much more time than using an older full frame camera covering a bigger FOV. Of course the newer FF cmos cameras are a dream but they should be at nearly $4000.00



#16 telfish

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 01:05 PM

Some images taken with the Esprit 120 and 533 camera. 

 

https://www.cloudyni...ages][sortDir]=


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#17 khursh

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Posted 02 July 2020 - 05:35 PM

Nice! Cygnus wall, Terry



#18 Barry A. Waters

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Posted 03 July 2020 - 07:18 PM

This thread is a GREAT find for me as I am also looking VERY closely at the Sky-Watcher 120mm Esprit ED Triplet APO (as it seems to be called here in the US). I recently received a competitor's 115mm ED APO and had to return it due to an issue with the Triplet Lens assembly itself so I am on the market for an new OTA once again.

 

If I have read things correctly (in NO way a given!), the Esprit's focuser has TWO (one Upper & one Lower) diagonally-angled Rack & Pinon tracks AND at least one (Side?) internal 'guide rail' that prevents rotation of the inner tube of the focuser. Could anyone verify this?

 

Barry

 

(Who is JUST getting into this and knows little...)



#19 telfish

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Posted 03 July 2020 - 07:23 PM

This thread is a GREAT find for me as I am also looking VERY closely at the Sky-Watcher 120mm Esprit ED Triplet APO (as it seems to be called here in the US). I recently received a competitor's 115mm ED APO and had to return it due to an issue with the Triplet Lens assembly itself so I am on the market for an new OTA once again.

 

If I have read things correctly (in NO way a given!), the Esprit's focuser has TWO (one Upper & one Lower) diagonally-angled Rack & Pinon tracks AND at least one (Side?) internal 'guide rail' that prevents rotation of the inner tube of the focuser. Could anyone verify this?

 

Barry

 

(Who is JUST getting into this and knows little...)

It certainly has the top and bottom rails, not sure about a side rails as they are not visible without taking the focuser apart. Having said that I am impressed with the quality of the focuser and this will be the first refractor I have not replaced the focuser with a Moonlite (Sorry Ron).


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#20 Alien Observatory

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Posted 03 July 2020 - 07:59 PM

Good morning,

 

I am writing a review of this refractor after about a week of almost non-stop use. I started my refractor journey with the very worthy Orion EON 120ED Doublet and was super happy for almost 2 years of use, but as its a doublet, once I started doing astrophotography I was not happy with the stars. I needed a triplet.

 

So started my quest for the holy grail: a reasonably priced, high performing refractor. As I was used to using a 120mm scope already, I felt that the 120-130mm range was the sweet spot of light grasp without being a tank (and a drag to use). I really want a 6 inch, but I would never use it. The contenders were the AT130EDT, the ESPRIT, and a TS-Optics 130. I ruled out because of cost but would be thrilled to have - the NP127is, the TEC 140, a StarFire 130GTX, etc. Ultimately, I went with the Esprit because of the lack of much bad to say about it from others. The AT130 is truly a great value, but I was a little worried about the focuser. I'm sure I would have been happy with the TSO scope, but nervous about European delivery. The ES 127 was ruled out pretty early as the reviews were pretty iffy. I have only one negative about the ESPRIT and that is its weight. Its a porker, but because its only a 120, I can still one-hand it with the Pegasus FocusCube and ASI533 attached.

 

Here is an image of M101 with the Orion EON

get.jpg?insecure

Not Terrible, but big stars

 

And here is my NGC 6946

get.jpg?insecure

Just better star color and size.

 

Clear Skies everyone!

I also sold my trusty EON 120 a few weeks ago and snagged a used TV 101 for its replacement.  Now waiting to select a lower cost mount for it.  Pat Utah :)



#21 khursh

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Posted 03 July 2020 - 08:16 PM

Congrats Pat! That's a super OTA and your mounting needs are not too robust.



#22 RodrigoQ

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Posted 05 July 2020 - 11:10 PM

I pulled the trigger on this amazing telescope and in 3 weeks will be at home!!! Do you guys have any link or suggestion about Bahtinov mask for this Telescope??

 

Thank you!



#23 khursh

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Posted 06 July 2020 - 10:31 AM

https://farpointastr...nch-telescopes/


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#24 RodrigoQ

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Posted 06 July 2020 - 04:15 PM

Thank you for share with us the link. Did you own this mask (5.5 Inch to 8.5) ?? How perform it?

 

I really appreciate your comments.



#25 khursh

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Posted 06 July 2020 - 04:28 PM

I do not use a mask. I use auto-focusing with the Pegasus FocusCube. I have on of their masks for my C8 though and it works great.


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