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John

The Skywatcher Evostar ED150 DS Pro Is Here !

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Well, the black beast has arrived :grin:

Lots of photos will follow this short initial piece, followed (hopefully !) by reports on performance, handling etc, etc.

The outer packaging is 146cm in length and the aluminum scope case is 140cm long. The only issue I have had with the shipping is that a small hole was punched in the aluminum case from the inside. Examination showed that this was caused by the camera mounting adapter screw on one of the tube rings punching through as the scope moved around in transit. No damage to the scope at all - it's looking lovely.

The finish is very good, the dew shield is metal as is the one piece dust cap (nice touch !). The dew shield is 20cm deep (to the top surface of the objective lens). No plastic on the scope at all as far as I can determine. The finder and diagonal shown are mine, all the rest arrived in the shipping carton along with a Canon EOS - T2 camera adapter and another adapter, purpose as yet unknown. The focuser is smooth yet firm.

I've mounted the scope using the stock tube rings and dovetail bar. Both the ED120 and the ED150 are handled smoothly by the Ercole mount and the Berlebach tripod. I can pick the whole lot up and move it around the garden too !

First Light Optics have also sent me the more robust tube ring set and 75mm DT bar option to try in due course. And a William Optics Binoviewer set to answer some questions on the compatibility of the scope for that accessory.

Very early impressions are that the scope is lighter than I expected, easier to handle and that Skywatcher have done just what they said they would - produced a worthy and long awaited larger aperture addition to their very popular ED doublet refractor range.

Many thanks to Steve at First Light Optics for making this happen. I will report back frequently and in some detail on this scope :icon_salut:

Now for lots of pics to get the ball rolling :smiley:

 

 

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Fan-bloomin'-tastic !!

Very encouraging early report.

One for Skywatcher. Do you think they should hide the camera adapter under one of the foam accessory slots for shipping?

Great stuff John. Have fun!!!

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Wow - That IS a beast of an OTA :Envy:.  I very much look forward to hearing more reports on this... :)

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Excellent news, John - the biggest surprise for me so far is just how big your existing 120ED is in photograph 11! Clearly the 150ED is a lot bigger so it is a big beastie but not overwhelmingly so. The pair look great on your Ercole mount and the Berlebach tripod. It's probably just the imager in me but I'd be mounting it in the CNC rings and 'Losmandy' bar but, of course, for your review you should indeed be using the 'standard' mountings first for comparison.

I hope you get plenty of clear skies and good seeing in the near future, John!

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This may sound daft, but after trying to visualise the size, it's actually smaller than I thought !!

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Really looking forward to the report John. Fingers crossed for a week of clear skies.

One question John concerning the dewshield. How does it stay where you put it, is it via thumbscrews or is the fit so precise it just doesn't move back?

Edited by Doc

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11 minutes ago, AndyH said:

This may sound daft, but after trying to visualise the size, it's actually smaller than I thought !!

It's not daft Andy, I'm thinking the same looking at it. Certainly no larger than an Evostar 150 F/8 achro (the type without collimatable objective cell). Not as top heavy either.

As soon as I lifted it out of it's case I thought "this is a managable 6" refractor" :smiley:

I've just used a cheshire eyepiece to check the collimation (tilt) of the objective and it seems pretty much spot on.

The downer just now is quite a lot of these have appeared :clouds1:

Still, FLO did warn me ! :rolleyes2:

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The FLO label oozes optimism, with the word MAY.
It should say is 99.9% certain to contain cloud!

That scope does look rather nice indeed, looks nice on that Giro too.

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This new scope does look nice, and i like the new green accent on the livery, it looks to be a nice manageable 6" ED frac, and i await the disappearance of the white fluffy stuff so you can put it to test  

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22 minutes ago, Doc said:

...One question John concerning the dewshield. How does it stay where you put it, is it via thumbscrews or is the fit so precise it just doesn't move back?

It's a fixed dew shield as per the ED120.

 

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Comparing the objective lens coatings with the ED120, the coatings on the ED150 seem more of a purple colour compared to the deep green tint of the 120. Both seem to use high quality coatings. The ED150 has the "new scope" smell when you remove the dust cap. It's a nice smell IMHO :grin:

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@John. I expected the dew shield to be metal, my interest lies in what metal, steel or aluminium. The common 6" F8 SW achromats had steel dew shields which always seemed OTT for a telescope that was already very front heavy.   ?

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18 minutes ago, Peter Drew said:

@John. I expected the dew shield to be metal, my interest lies in what metal, steel or aluminium. The common 6" F8 SW achromats had steel dew shields which always seemed OTT for a telescope that was already very front heavy.   ?

It is white though Peter, so it's lighter than it would be if it were black! 

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22 minutes ago, Peter Drew said:

@John. I expected the dew shield to be metal, my interest lies in what metal, steel or aluminium. The common 6" F8 SW achromats had steel dew shields which always seemed OTT for a telescope that was already very front heavy.   ?

I've just tried a magnet on both the main tube and the dew shield. Both are non-magnetic so aluminum I think. I get the same results with the ED120.

The ED150 does not seem over front heavy on the basis of my limited experience with it. With the finder and 2" diagonal fitted (as per the pics) the balance point is just about in the centre of the dovetail bar as fitted in the pictures.

 

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That looks interesting. Shame about the cell being non adjustable but thats me being old fashioned? Agreed it doesnt look as big as one would expect. Looking forward to your review John.

A metal Dew Shield again. Great for quality but it reminds me of trying to balance the old F8 with lead at the focuser end. I eventually made my own plastic shield which helped. I spose if the cell is non collimateable and it looks a lot shorter than the old F8 cell that will be a good weight saving.

Edited by philj

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4 minutes ago, philj said:

That looks interesting. Shame about the cell being non adjustable but thats me being old fashioned? Agreed it doesnt look as big as one would expect. Looking forward to your review John

Not sure that’s the case Phil, would be interesting to find out though hopefully it is not something which will need touching.

Great pictures @John, it sits very nicely on the Ercole along side the 120ED. I can see you are going to have some fun with those two plus the LZOS :)

Out of interest, do you have two similar diagonals so you can rule out that contributing to any differences you see?

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3 minutes ago, Stu said:

...Out of interest, do you have two similar diagonals so you can rule out that contributing to any differences you see?

I have a couple of TV Everbrights and an AP Maxbright. Also the T2 Baader Zeiss prism which is currently on the Tak FC100DL could be bought into play.

I'll try and keep a level playing field as far as possible :smiley:

Not much chance of observational comparisons this evening currently due to :clouds1:

If it clears later I might get out though.

 

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20 minutes ago, philj said:

That looks interesting. Shame about the cell being non adjustable but thats me being old fashioned? Agreed it doesnt look as big as one would expect. Looking forward to your review John.

A metal Dew Shield again. Great for quality but it reminds me of trying to balance the old F8 with lead at the focuser end. I eventually made my own plastic shield which helped. I spose if the cell is non collimateable and it looks a lot shorter than the old F8 cell that will be a good weight saving.

The cell on the ED120 is not adjustable either. Thats been fine since I've had it. Collimation, as far as as objective tilt goes, looks pretty good from the cheshire eyepiece test that I did earlier. If the lenses are decentred then it will take a star test to show that.

The ED150 is a well balanced scope, for a 6" refractor, IMHO. It balances (minus an eyepiece) more or less in the centre of the dovetail bar as you see it positioned in the photos. Better than a Evostar 150 F/8 achro in this respect I feel.

The Meade AR6 that I had a few years ago had a plastic dew shield and a plastic counter cell to address being nose heavy I recall. The stock dew shield on that was really much too short though !

 

 

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As it's cloudy now, some more photos of the ED150, the ED120 and the TMB/LZOS 130 F/9.2 triplet for comparison. I've weighed the OTA's in the trim seen in the photos and the results were 6.6kg for the ED120, 9.6kg for the TMB/LZOS 130 and 10.5kg for the ED150. The TMB/LZOS and the ED150 feel very much the same in terms of handling, mounting etc.

 

 

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Fantastic thread so far John :) As it's cloudy, any chance of some objective lens/cell shots or is the dew shield too deep for this to be practical? I did read that removing the dew shield might take many hands. 

EDIT: just spotted one you took earlier, it's hard to see the coatings in the sunlight but the tube looks nicely baffled if only a bit on the grey side rather than black. 

Edited by Lockie

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Just now, Lockie said:

Fantastic thread so far John :) As it's cloudy, any chance of some objective lens/cell shots or is the dew shield too deep for this to be practical? I did read that removing the dew shield might take many hands. 

I've got the scope out and cooled but under cover at the moment just in case the clouds part Chris. If there is no improvement I'll bring it in later and take some objective snaps. Probably won't be able to see much of the objective cell without removing the dew shield and I'll only do that if it is straightforward to do - it's not my scope :smiley:

The distance between the top rim of the dew shield and the objective lens is around 20cm so it is quite deep.

 

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1 minute ago, John said:

I've got the scope out and cooled but under cover at the moment just in case the clouds part Chris. If there is no improvement I'll bring it in later and take some objective snaps. Probably won't be able to see much of the objective cell without removing the dew shield and I'll only do that if it is straightforward to do - it's not my scope :smiley:

The distance between the top rim of the dew shield and the objective lens is around 20cm so it is quite deep.

 

Very pro active John, you never know :) I've just spotted another pic of your showing the coatings much better (not sure how I missed these pics on my first read through?) Wow the coatings are purple arn't they, very different to the usual deep green, reminds me of Vixen or Tal RS coatings, they look nicely applied too.

Don't worry about removing the dew shield if it's not straight forward off course. I'm glad it's a nice deep ali one though, shows that Skywatcher have put some thought into dew prevention, stray light, and balance.   

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