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Sky Watcher Esprit 100ED First Light

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#1 Kevin_A

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Posted 19 May 2024 - 10:44 AM

The SW Esprit 100ED scope… I know this is an old school telescope that has been around for quite some time now, but I thought it might still have relevance in a world that is a wash of new quads, quints, septuplets and more new offerings that offer lots of mystery glass and promised flat fields and even huge apertures for a bargain basement to mid range price. It is getting harder to decide what to get today and what you are actually getting in terms of quality and glass.

I had a very hard time recently deciding and comparing all the available offerings that made my head started spinning. I wanted something that gave excellent images in the 100mm range without paying for a Takahashi!

I knew SW Esprit’s have been around for awhile and some people had problems with pinched optics when cold, while others raved about them.
Well, I finally decided that I did not want another multiple lens quad, quint or more as I have a quintuplet and I still do not know the glass types and am just soso happy with it. So I finally decided upon an older optical design with a beefy focuser. I bought the Sky Watcher!
The Esprit 100ED scopes are definitely built like tanks, and when you replace the short silly single Losmandy dovetail plate with two ADM longer versions the weight adds up to about 23 lbs! Wow, that is heavy for a 100mm scope and heavier than my 115mm FK61 triplet! That is definitely very heavy for a 100mm F5.5 scope so it definitely uses a lot of thicker steel compared to most! Then again the main tube that holds the objective is a huge oversized 130mm with an even bigger dew shield. The Dew shield was my only complaint as I had to remove it due to sagging from being so heavy, but adding a plastic foam wrap around the objective cell fixed that easily and nicely. The 3.4” focuser is nice and beefy and a very high quality. 
So yes, it is old school, hugely over-built with its old captains wheel and strange rotator assembly but all I can say in the end is… the FPL-53 glass combo delivers absolutely stunning crisp images and at the end of the day that what still matters the most to me. 
Here is an image of the rig and my first light of M13 in an almost full moon, 91% humidity and only 1.5 hours of 120s subs. Fog rolled in cutting my night very short.

So I think I have to say some old school stuff is still definitely relevant today! 

 

IMG 2274
 
M13 at 1,5 hours only.
IMG 2309

 


Edited by Kevin_A, 19 May 2024 - 10:58 AM.

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#2 drprovi57

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Posted 19 May 2024 - 04:58 PM

Kevin - congrats on your SW 100ED Esprit scope.  You will have many nights of great imaging as also visual observations.  I have owned my SW1 Esprit 100 for many years - excellent imaging scope at F/5.5 with a 550mm FL.   I did upgrade the original focuser to a 3" Feather Touch focuser - the original was good, but the FT allows more imaging weight and provides smooth operation.   I recently took some data of M81 & M82 with my SW Esprit 100 using a ZWO ASI2600MC OSC camera - 4 hours of data, full frame... 

 

Enjoy the SW 100ED Esprit

 

M81&82 SW100ED Final 05.15.2024.jpeg

 


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#3 Kevin_A

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Posted 19 May 2024 - 06:17 PM

Kevin - congrats on your SW 100ED Esprit scope.  You will have many nights of great imaging as also visual observations.  I have owned my SW1 Esprit 100 for many years - excellent imaging scope at F/5.5 with a 550mm FL.   I did upgrade the original focuser to a 3" Feather Touch focuser - the original was good, but the FT allows more imaging weight and provides smooth operation.   I recently took some data of M81 & M82 with my SW Esprit 100 using a ZWO ASI2600MC OSC camera - 4 hours of data, full frame... 

 

Enjoy the SW 100ED Esprit

 

attachicon.gif M81&82 SW100ED Final 05.15.2024.jpeg

I was using a nice 115mm triplet but I wanted a more precise imaging scope with better glass and that now allows me to use my bigger scope for visual with my 2x extender at 1610mm. Win win!



#4 drprovi57

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Posted 19 May 2024 - 06:45 PM

I was using a nice 115mm triplet but I wanted a more precise imaging scope with better glass and that now allows me to use my bigger scope for visual with my 2x extender at 1610mm. Win win!

 

Excellent pairing!  I use my larger CFF200 f6.5 APO for visual (and some imaging) with 2x Televue Powermate at 2600mm smile.gif


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#5 sehoon104

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Posted 23 May 2024 - 05:52 PM

Congrats! This scope is very sharp and produces excellent images. I swapped to Askar FRA500 to use a full frame camera, but it's noticeably blurrier compared to the Esprit. With 2600, this scope a beast in terms of the price you pay.


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#6 Kevin_A

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Posted 24 May 2024 - 11:21 AM

Congrats! This scope is very sharp and produces excellent images. I swapped to Askar FRA500 to use a full frame camera, but it's noticeably blurrier compared to the Esprit. With 2600, this scope a beast in terms of the price you pay.

Yes, quality vs quantity! I went from a 115mm triplet to this 100ED to clean up a bit of latereral CA on my 115.

I thought about the 120ED but it was just too heavy to be fun without a permanent observatory for me. 



#7 m.gilg

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Posted 25 May 2024 - 01:55 AM

I also own the SW Esprit 100ED since many years and I use it for visual and photographic astronomy. I still enjoy the stunning wide field and the fast apature. Congratulations to your new scope. 


Edited by m.gilg, 25 May 2024 - 01:55 AM.

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