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Looking for a refractor

TareqPhoto
06 Jan, 2018 05:35
Hi all,

I want to buy my first APO  triplet but not sure which one, i wanted to be fast, fast than F6 [so F6 or slower are out], wanted to have it larger or longer than 500mm focal length because i don't want wider field for now, i have Canon lenses which i can use for wider fields, so i want to cover longer or narrower fields, what is your recommend?

The scope will be dedicated for astrophotography, the budget is anywhere between $1500 up to $2500, can stretch it to about $3000 if necessary, or i can wait much longer to save more then my budget can reach nearly $4000-5000, but i want to see which refractor meeting my criteria for roughly $2500 first?

Tareq
huerbsch
06 Jan, 2018 05:43
https://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p6478_TS-Optics-Imaging-Star-100mm-f-5-8-Quadruplet-Apo-with-field-flatener.html
TareqPhoto
06 Jan, 2018 05:53
Robert Huerbsch
https://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p6478_TS-Optics-Imaging-Star-100mm-f-5-8-Quadruplet-Apo-with-field-flatener.html
I asked in a forum and i included 5 options, one of them is that above scope, but one member told me to forget them all and go with TV NP101, if i will go with TV NP101 then i can save little more and then i can afford a Takahashi scope, but i didn't want to spend over $3500 just yet, i can afford about $4000-5000 after 3 or 4 months, but i live in red zone light pollution, is it really worthy to go with one of very expensive scopes?

Your link also giving me an option of TS 130mm F5, this is also one of the options, so why you suggested that one above then?
ojaigsguy
06 Jan, 2018 06:08
If you’re serious, save up for a TV 127is.  I’ve used all others and nothing else comes close. I imaged with a Tak 130 for years, backfocus is a constant isssue, optics are good.  The TV is a system, all figured  out already.  Excellent optics, flat field 660mm @ f5.2.  In quality, I prefer the TV to all others.  Made in America !
TareqPhoto
06 Jan, 2018 06:19
Jeff Bennett
If you’re serious, save up for a TV 127is.  I’ve used all others and nothing else comes close. I imaged with a Tak 130 for years, backfocus is a constant isssue, optics are good.  The TV is a system, all figured  out already.  Excellent optics, flat field 660mm @ f5.2.  In quality, I prefer the TV to all others.  Made in America !

So are you saying that TV is better than Takahashi?

Someone recommended NP101 [or 101is], and you recommend NP127is, so which one is worthy? and if i go that route i just mentioned and said that i can add little more then i can afford a Takahashi FSQ-106EDX, what do you say? if i go above $3000 the definitely one of those big names of high end [Tak, AP, TEC,…etc].
ojaigsguy
06 Jan, 2018 16:39
I am saying that.  I’ve owned and used at least five different Taks and one each of every Televue.  As for TEC , second class. AP, I hear they’re great if you can get and afford one.  With Televue you get the whole deal; great service if you need it ( either Al or his son David answer the phone), top of the line acccessories.  Ever tried to get service or advice from  Tak?

FSQ106?  Too pricey for what you get.  Here’s my advice:  spend your money on the best mount you can afford: AP, Software Bisque, Tak .  Then buy a used scope of any brand to suit your needs.  You’ll be happy.
TareqPhoto
07 Jan, 2018 00:44
Jeff Bennett
I am saying that.  I’ve owned and used at least five different Taks and one each of every Televue.  As for TEC , second class. AP, I hear they’re great if you can get and afford one.  With Televue you get the whole deal; great service if you need it ( either Al or his son David answer the phone), top of the line accessories.  Ever tried to get service or advice from  Tak?FSQ106?  Too pricey for what you get.  Here’s my advice:  spend your money on the best mount you can afford: AP, Software Bisque, Tak .  Then buy a used scope of any brand to suit your needs.  You’ll be happy.
Well, i think i can't spend too much now, i can't afford expensive mount and expensive scope, i am very new to astrophotogrphy and wasting nearly $10k-20k to early/soon isn't good for me now, i think i will choose one cheap scope of APO and add a Newt and call it a night, then later in the future maybe in 2019 i will start to add expensive equipment one by one.

About services, i am not living in USA or Europe, so services are bad, and i already have one online store that can service me with Takahashi and William Optics if needed, i live in middle east, and i only use online, and most big vendors i use do have great service, so i can't just choose Tele Vue for their great service as i am not dealing with them directly, i will buy Tele Vue another items such as eyepieces and Barlow, but i don't know why i choose their scopes if i can't get service good enough or the service isn't different than another manufacturers around the world, i am close to Asian markets anyway.
carastro
07 Jan, 2018 09:36
You say you can't afford a good mount and a good telescope, but do make sure to get a decent mount as without that any decent telescope will be wasted in astrophotography.

Make sure the mount is equatorial, capable of guiding, and will take the weight for any telescope and accessories you are likely to put on it.  (astrophotography should have half the amount of weight recommended for visual).

William Optics APOs are very nice and fast optics, so they will be a good starter scope for you, I have always found their mounting foot less good, but if you can get one with mounting rings, that would be better.   Here in the UK, we recommend the Skywatcher mounts either the NEQ6 (or the latest model of it), or the lighter HEQ5 (but that depends how heavy a scope you plan to put on it).

Good luck.

Carole
Edited 07 Jan, 2018 09:40
TareqPhoto
07 Jan, 2018 10:08
Carole Pope
You say you can't afford a good mount and a good telescope, but do make sure to get a decent mount as without that any decent telescope will be wasted in astrophotography.

Make sure the mount is equatorial, capable of guiding, and will take the weight for any telescope and accessories you are likely to put on it.  (astrophotography should have half the amount of weight recommended for visual).
William Optics APOs are very nice and fast optics, so they will be a good starter scope for you, I have always found their mounting foot less good, but if you can get one with mounting rings, that would be better.   Here in the UK, we recommend the Skywatcher mounts either the NEQ6 (or the latest model of it), or the lighter HEQ5 (but that depends how heavy a scope you plan to put on it).
Good luck.
Carole
Hi Carole,

I have a mount already, it is SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6, but even with this mount some think that i should have a better mount even for moderate refractor, i asked many forums that i want to go with 12" or 14" SCT in the future for planetary imaging, but i think that will be another budget, big budget, because i need another capable better mount to handle 12" or 14" SCT, many told me my mount may hold it but it will be a lot of issues or risk, so it is not a good idea.

But my question was about refractor, most refractors are less heavy than those heavy large SCTs, even if i use accessories it is still within my mount capability, i saw this mount with so many equipment of different refractors, but i am still can't decide on which refractor.

William Optics scopes are fine, but they aren't not very special or unique than something else such as Stellarvue or Skywatcher or Astro-Tech, i am not talking about very expensive scopes, so i can't go with one model if there are many other s good or less or even slightly better.

I still look for a scope that has faster than F6, i know it is not a big deal, and i know i can use a reducer, but it is always nice to have fast scopes, and above are some of fast scope, faster than F6 except of APM, and i really feel i want to give those TSO scopes a go, their specifications aren't much different than WO or Stellarvue, they have FPL-53, and few have field flattener built in, even the site stated that they will test the scope before shipping it to insure the quality of performance, so isn't that enough? why William Optics be any better? most posts i read regarding William Optics were pointing out about it is made in USA and having great service, i am not in USA and i can't get services overseas, so it is not applicable to me.

Thanks for your reply,

Tareq
cosmophoton
07 Jan, 2018 12:07
Hi Tareq,

I would like to second Carole's advice: the mount is the most important link in astrophotography. As you already own an AZ-EQ6 (which is a good mount), I would suggest that you acquire a Canon 200mm f/2.8 lens (or use your own 100mm/400mm lens), an autoguider set (with PHD2 free software), and start making DSLR astrophotography. Buy PixInsight and learn how to process images. It would be much easier to make progress towards longer focal length scopes and CCD cameras afterwards. It is better to practice a lot with your own current equipment than to invest into something that may cause frustration due to lack of experience.

Just my 2 cents,
Luiz
Edited 07 Jan, 2018 18:21
TareqPhoto
07 Jan, 2018 12:23
Luiz Duczmal
Hi Tareq,I would like to second Carole's advice: the mount is the most important link in astrophotography. As you already own an AZ-EQ6 (which is a good mount), I would suggest that you acquire a Canon 200mm f/2.8 lens (or use your own 100mm/400mm lens), an autoguider set (with PHD2 free software), and start making DSLR astrophotography. Buy PixInsight and learn how to process images. It would be much easier to make progress toward longer focal length scopes and CCD cameras afterwards. It is better to practice a lot with your own current equipment than to invest into something that may cause frustration due to lack of experience.

Just my 2 cents,
Luiz
Hi Luiz,

Thank you very much for your post and advise.

I disagree with you, i live in a light pollution area, and a DSLR unmodified and Canon lens is just a pain, i tried before without a tracking and it never gave me like a great results, so i will never waste time for that, and when i bought my QHY163M and started to use it with ST80 i got results i never dream about, and i can't be happier, i saw a lot of mono cooled images on this site, actually this site was the first and main reason i got into astrophotography and mono astro images were my top favorite and mind blowing, so i will pass about DSLR and Canon lenses, i do have Canon 300 2.8 so this i can use it with my mono astro camera.

About frustration, if i have a nice equipment then i never frustrated, because i know it is only my fault, if someone did amazing with EQ5 and i have this mount then i have to work hard to get same or similar results, if some doing mind blowing images with ASI1600mm for example and i have this camera then it is only up to me to get similar, and narrowbanding is the way to go in my area, i tested few nights and i can never look back to DSLR at all, learning is a matter of time, it is fun, it is challenge, learning with a DSLR is like learning car racing with slow not muh capable car, it will teach driving, but it will take very long time in learning and it will give more frustration than a real fast racing cars, same with a mono and filters, it will take time but it will take you there in shorter time, now only i need a better scope which is an APO triplet and i am all done, i didn't complain about i don't have good images at all in my questions or around, i am just complaining about how to decide or choose right, mount and camera and filters are done, now only scope part is left, hope this is done soon too.

Tareq  smilesmile
carastro
07 Jan, 2018 12:58
OK, you have a good mount for astro-imaging, loads of people use that mount.

I would recommend then a good Apo telescope, and a mono camera so you can do narrowband imaging since you live in a LP location.  I can't recommend a good APO as I only have cheaper APOs myself.  Many people swear by the Triplets but I have no experience of them.  There are other good scopes about such as the RC scopes and Newtonian's but you state you want a refractor, so you'll need advice on the Refractors from those who know.

Carole

PS: Having read you last post more thoroughly you seem to have drawn that conclusion yourself.  Good Luck.
Edited 07 Jan, 2018 13:00
TareqPhoto
07 Jan, 2018 14:04
HI again Carole,

It is ok, i will figure out which APO triplet i will buy, i already have the camera, so i am waiting, and i appreciate your help, so kind from you  smile

Good luck to all.

Tareq
roofkid
07 Jan, 2018 15:57
Personally for those requirements I would 100% recommend the Skywatcher Esprit 100 (disclaimer: I have it). I don't think any other scope even comes close in this price bracket.

Also I can only recant Caroles advice: Invest your money in the mount first.
TareqPhoto
07 Jan, 2018 16:18
Sven Hoffmann
Personally for those requirements I would 100% recommend the Skywatcher Esprit 100 (disclaimer: I have it). I don't think any other scope even comes close in this price bracket.Also I can only recant Caroles advice: Invest your money in the mount first.
Which mount?
huerbsch
07 Jan, 2018 16:52
You don't need a new mount, the AZ-EQ6 is a great mount especially if you are only putting a mid-size refractor on it. Any of the choices below are good.

Stellarvue: http://www.stellarvue.com/imaging-telescopes/ smile

WilliamOptics Flourostar: https://williamoptics.com/products/telescope/fluorostar smile

Takahashi: http://www.takahashiamerica.com/takahashi-fsq-106edx4-quadruplet-refractor-telesco.html smilesmile   smile
TareqPhoto
07 Jan, 2018 16:54
Robert Huerbsch
You don't need a new mount, the AZ-EQ6 is a great mount especially if you are only putting a mid-size refractor on it. Any of the choices below are good.Stellarvue: http://www.stellarvue.com/imaging-telescopes/

WilliamOptics Flourostar: https://williamoptics.com/products/telescope/fluorostar

Takahashi: http://www.takahashiamerica.com/takahashi-fsq-106edx4-quadruplet-refractor-telesco.html
The last one  smilesmile

Thank you very much!
blueangel
07 Jan, 2018 18:17
Quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten.  For many, the price of the best Astro equipment is beyond reach.  Outside of waiting until one's budget falls in line with one's goals, services like Deep Sky West provide great raw material for those who want to access the best equipment and can't afford to buy it all at once.  Although a world class refractor is a wonderful thing, it is virtually worthless without cameras,  great mounts, good filters, superb software and a good observing location.  Getting from here to there is the problem for many.

If I could buy only one thing, I would stretch real hard to buy an Astro-Physics Mach 1 mount and put a telephoto on it for my first "scope."  But that would exceed most people's budget.
Edited 07 Jan, 2018 18:25
TareqPhoto
09 Jan, 2018 12:02
Jim Matzger
Quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten.  For many, the price of the best Astro equipment is beyond reach.  Outside of waiting until one's budget falls in line with one's goals, services like Deep Sky West provide great raw material for those who want to access the best equipment and can't afford to buy it all at once.  Although a world class refractor is a wonderful thing, it is virtually worthless without cameras,  great mounts, good filters, superb software and a good observing location.  Getting from here to there is the problem for many.If I could buy only one thing, I would stretch real hard to buy an Astro-Physics Mach 1 mount and put a telephoto on it for my first "scope."  But that would exceed most people's budget.
Edited 07 Jan, 2018 21:25
Most of the time or maybe always Quality is coming with a price, big price really, so to have a quality mount and refractor then i have to spend $$$$ that i can't get unless i save for nearly 5 months without spending on anything at all, impossible, so i think i will not look for quality then now, i started now so i better have something cheaper or say reasonable price, i will worry about quality later.
Starminer68
09 Jan, 2018 13:47
smile Buy Explore Scientific 102, reasonable by price (around US$1009)but  not is a quite APO (they use FCD1 glass), the same version with FCD100 -$500 extra. Add flatener-reducer and enjoy observing and AP  smile
Edited 09 Jan, 2018 13:48
gnomus
09 Jan, 2018 14:51
I like and have experience of the Skywatcher Esprit range and I think you cannot go wrong with them.  The Takahashi FSQ 106 seems to be quite good and I have some experience of those, but these are beyond budget, I think.  Also it is not a triplet but a modified Petzval.   (I had a poor FSQ 85 which I returned …smile  I have no experience of the CFF scopes, but would certainly be looking at them if in the market.
TareqPhoto
09 Jan, 2018 15:54
Adel Kildeev
Buy Explore Scientific 102, reasonable by price (around US$1009)but  not is a quite APO (they use FCD1 glass), the same version with FCD100 -$500 extra. Add flatener-reducer and enjoy observing and AP

I don't want Explore Scientific scopes, thanks.
TareqPhoto
09 Jan, 2018 15:56
Steve Milne
I like and have experience of the Skywatcher Esprit range and I think you cannot go wrong with them.  The Takahashi FSQ 106 seems to be quite good and I have some experience of those, but these are beyond budget, I think.  Also it is not a triplet but a modified Petzval.   (I had a poor FSQ 85 which I returned …  I have no experience of the CFF scopes, but would certainly be looking at them if in the market.

You have very nice inmages, lucky you to use Talahashi scope, i don't know if the camera you use is also better, but i think my camera is good enough, so i only need to get the scope, but sure Takahashi is a lot, i may able to afford that FSQ-106, but honestly speaking, i have many things in life that will kill my budget easily then i will suffer, so i don't need to spend a lot now yet, i am still new in astrophotography.
gnomus
09 Jan, 2018 16:06
Tareq Abdulla
….  You have very nice inmages, lucky you to use Talahashi scope, i don't know if the camera you use is also better, but i think my camera is good enough, so i only need to get the scope, but sure Takahashi is a lot, i may able to afford that FSQ-106, but honestly speaking, i have many things in life that will kill my budget easily then i will suffer, so i don't need to spend a lot now yet, i am still new in astrophotography.

It's very nice of you to say so, Tareq, but I am not all that convinced that scopes/camera are the crucial issue.  Mount is important, but you seem to have a reasonable mount.  I wouldn't go too long on focal length either.  It is easier to guide a 500 mm than a 1000 mm.  You don't say why you are against the widefield option.  If it were me, I would be looking for around the 500mm.  Possibly a Skywatcher Esprit 100 with flattener.  There is a lot of hype about certain brands - and not all of that necessarily stands up to real world testing -  https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/480805-tak-fsq106-vs-sw-esprit-100/ Did you say which camera you had?  You might want to have a look at this website to get an idea of FOV with different telescopes/cameras - http://astronomy.tools/calculators/field_of_view/
Edited 09 Jan, 2018 16:08
Starminer68
09 Jan, 2018 17:10
Steve Milne
Tareq Abdulla
….  You have very nice inmages, lucky you to use Talahashi scope, i don't know if the camera you use is also better, but i think my camera is good enough, so i only need to get the scope, but sure Takahashi is a lot, i may able to afford that FSQ-106, but honestly speaking, i have many things in life that will kill my budget easily then i will suffer, so i don't need to spend a lot now yet, i am still new in astrophotography.

It's very nice of you to say so, Tareq, but I am not all that convinced that scopes/camera are the crucial issue.  Mount is important, but you seem to have a reasonable mount.  I wouldn't go too long on focal length either.  It is easier to guide a 500 mm than a 1000 mm.  You don't say why you are against the widefield option.  If it were me, I would be looking for around the 500mm.  Possibly a Skywatcher Esprit 100 with flattener.  There is a lot of hype about certain brands - and not all of that necessarily stands up to real world testing -  https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/480805-tak-fsq106-vs-sw-esprit-100/ Did you say which camera you had?  You might want to have a look at this website to get an idea of FOV with different telescopes/cameras - http://astronomy.tools/calculators/field_of_view/
I absolutely agree with Steve, for APO f5-f6 - the best. This is another good site: http://test.blackwaterskies.co.uk/p/imagingtoolbox.html
 
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