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Sharpstar 94mm f/5.5 ED Triplet Apo - First Impressions

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#1 rkille

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 09:11 PM

Just purchased the new Sharpstar 94mm f/5.5 ED Triplet Apo and thought I would share my first impressions.  As far as build quality everything seems good. I would probably give it a 4.5 out of 5 stars overall.   I can't yet comment on the visual or photographic quality since I am waiting for the clouds to clear.  I will post my observation impressions as soon as I have them.  I was not able to find any other reviews or reviews of the scope out there yet, so I thought I would start a thread and see if anyone else who has this scope would like to share their impressions as well.  Or if you are considering purchasing this scope, feel free to ask questions.  I've created a quick unboxing video here: https://youtu.be/44rVp85VXBA

 

I will be using this visually as well as with the following cameras.  ASI 294MC Pro, ASI 2600 MC Pro, Sony a7iii DSLR.  

 

 sharpstar_94.jpg

OTA Specifications:

Aperture: 94mm
Limiting star magnitude: 11.62
Focus ratio: f/5.5
Resolution: 1.28 angular seconds
Objective type: Triplet air-spaced APO (two extra-low dispersion ED glass)
Total length of the tube: 450mm (collapsed), 575mm (extended)
Focuser travel: 58mm
Dewshield outside diameter: 118mm
Tube outside diamter: 104mm
Accessories: Tube Rings, Dovetail Plate, Handle
Weight: 4.2kg (9.4lbs)

________________________________________________________________

Russell K.

genesisobservatory.org

Toledo, OH, USA


Edited by rkille, 28 October 2020 - 09:24 PM.

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#2 Jim Waters

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 09:14 PM

Please post an update with astro images when the clouds clear.

#3 M11Mike

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 09:28 PM

Congrats and best of luck with your new scope. 

 

Quickie question - have you ever owned and used a 3.5"- 4.0" APO, like a TAK or AP???  (or even taken a good look at one)  



#4 rkille

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 09:46 PM

Thanks, M11Mike!  

Truthfully, no. I have not owned an APO in this size and would not call myself a "visual observer"  Mostly into astro-photography. But do visual on occasion. All my gear is listed on my genesisobservator.org website.  As part of the Toledo Astronomy Association and having friends who own similar scopes, as well as having attended several star parties I have had a chance to get my hands on and observe several similar scopes.  I especially have been wanting to get the TAK FSQ-106EDX4 since I got a good look at it at NEAF 2019.  This is no TAK for sure, but for the price, seems better then some scopes I have seen in the range.  Once I put it through the paces, I will be able to give a better assessment.    

 

As far as my visual review, I will be relying heavily on my friend who is a visual observer superstar and has been visually observing for 30+ years.  He owns many APOs and can spot the slightest of chromatic adoration from a mile away.  I will share his impressions as well. And hope to get impressions from other club members as well.  Hopefully this coming Saturday when he skies are set to clear.

________________________________________________________________

Russell K.

genesisobservatory.org

Toledo, OH, USA     


Edited by rkille, 28 October 2020 - 09:59 PM.


#5 Rick Runcie

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Posted 29 October 2020 - 02:11 PM

Good luck with your new scope. I'm sure you'll get some fantastic images with it. I still marvel at the calendar you produced and gave me at WSP.  Clear and steady skies

Rick from NJ.



#6 rkille

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Posted 16 November 2020 - 06:04 PM

Visual Review

I've had the scope out at least 4 times now to do some visual.  Had several other club members also give their impressions.  In short, visually this seems to be a great scope. All visual observations were using the native 517mm focal length. Used several quality eyepieces from 23 to 8mm. My favorite was with the the Celestron 19 mm Luminos.  We looked at a variety of targets, such as M31, M13, M27, M45 and several others.  Stars were pinpoint with no chromatic aberration when in focus.   Perhaps more importantly, when using the smaller mm eyepieces we didn't see any false color in the airy disk of bright starts outside of focus.  Maybe there was a slight rim of magenta inside focus, but not everyone agreed.  Some saw it, others did not.  Also, if your very experienced you can see the slight difference in pinpoint sharpness toward the edge of the field of view.  But it is not at all noticeable unless you are looking for it and nothing that is not to be expected for a 4" scope with f/5.5 ratio.  I guess if I was to give a visual rating, it would be 4.5 out of 5 stars.   I am certainly not disappointed. 

 

I am not quite yet ready to give my photographic review, but my first impression has been good.  Before I give the review, I want to get the right adapter for the proper backspacing.  I did use the .8x focal reducer to snap a picture of M31. The backspacing with this adapter is 55mm.  My spacing was no where close, so of course the stars at the edge were egg shaped.  However, colors and starts at the center looked great. I didn't see anything to give me concern.  I was using a ASI 2600MC Pro APSC sensor for this.  Once I get the backspacing dialed into where it needs to be, I will share actual pictures.  I plan to use the following cameras, ASI 294MC Pro,  ASI 2600MC Pro and Sony a7iii Full frame mirrorless.  Stay tuned for more.

 

One more thing. - There is an option to screw in a 2" filter inside the scope.  

2in.jpg    .8x Reducer optional =>ss94reducer.jpg

________________________________________________________________

Russell K.

genesisobservatory.org

Toledo, OH, USA


Edited by rkille, 16 November 2020 - 06:35 PM.


#7 sergiodiaz

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Posted 21 November 2020 - 06:24 AM

Thanks for the reviews, Russell!

 

I'm interested in this scope as it seems like a good compromise in portability, aperture and f-ratio, at least on paper. 

One question, as the backspacing of the reducer is 55mm, I would expect that the coupling with DSLRs and mirrorless cameras wouldn't need fine tuning, or at least be "about right" with standard bayonet-to-M48 adapters. Did you try with your Sony A7III?

 

Sergio

Seville, Spain

http://sergiodiaz.eu

https://www.astrobin...rs/sergio.diaz/



#8 Stevan Klaas

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Posted 02 December 2020 - 07:17 AM

Just received mine yesterday, the TS one from Teleskop Service.

Looks great, really. And heavier than I imagined.

Came with a heavy carry case too, this the no reducer/flattener option.

I will need a low latitute kit to make it work with my M-Zero, to continue imaging without meridian flip, since the cables of the camera hit the tripod.

But the small counterweight is enough to balance it.

Regards,
Stevan

53290C64-596F-46D2-856A-09FDBCD236C3.jpeg
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