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cotterless45

Equinox 120 gripped , sorted !

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Patbloke arrived early with a huge black soft case . Opening it up and pointing the objective my way ( woooo ! Coating !) was a gorgeous Equinox 120, 900mm f7.5 ed. Shortest scope I was to use for a few years !

The forecast was excellent , the sky was just cloud with gaps. It was a cinch to mount the scope onto the mount , just beautifully balanced . I put on my 2" WO diagonal and awaited the 10.00 forecast clear skies. Big gaps appeared, the cloud stopping light pollution from hitting the sky , real satin black gaps. Saturn passed the big tree , but a low Mars appeared with the promised clear sky.

I was just blown away by the clarity and purity of the views, diffraction discs were beautiful coloured marbles easily opening even faint binaries. It was just a delight to see clusters , NGC 6811 "hole in the cluster" was spectacular . We took NGC 7789 ("Caroline's  rose" ) we took up  to x100 to fill the view with dark lanes and dusty groups. 

Mars showed monstrous wobbling, but we did manage the dark areas and I got the ice cap. We later caught Comet 21P Giacobini -Zinner dipping to the side of Auriga. 

Nothing phased the views , we tested three eyepiece cases full . 42mm 2" LVW gave a stunning view of the double cluster, M31 and the whole of Pleiades, something which I'd not seen in a scope. Most captivating were the colours , high magnification bringing them out . We reached x400 without breaking up the view. This helped opening up tight binaries , really amazing. From 62 to 82 degree eps and the views kept coming .

The Garnet star currently bright, was stunning. No flare , no glare and just pure views to linger on. Theta Aurigae ( Bogardus ) had always been difficult , but even at low mag , I could clearly pick out the companion and third element. A 6mm circle T gave a stunning view. Problems that I had previously , I put down to too much aperture there and getting too much light from primary stars. This is where 120 wins out, no slouch for deep sky , we got the Eastern Veil and a core in NGC 7331. Just delightful. Oh , the standard focuser and silly tightening ring are just awful. Get a Moonlite on there !

Bit of chill and humidity began to kick in. I asked if he could leave the scope for further testing , a definite no ! I don't think that I can recall a better session enjoying some pretty demanding targets. When I'm past hoisting up 11 kgs of C6r, 120 ed is going to be arriving , wooop woop! 

Clear skies ! Old Nick.

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Welcome to the 120 Equinox appreciation society 😁

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So the 120 surprised you with the views have to see if anyone has one at Galloway and have a look through.

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Read reports, often the hype is just that. Not with the 120ed , we were both blown away with the views. The sky was not even at it's best with light pollution and humidity kicking around. It was the clarity of views that was stunning. Going to get the t-shirt , first !

old 👹

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Nick it was wonderful to give the new scope a good test with a man of knowledge... I've used the Equinox a few times already and have been delighted with the pin sharpness and colour of the views. Last night was fascinating picking out those binaries so clearly! I don't think I've ever seen such a super sharp and complete view of the double cluster - that was indeed a special moment! sometimes the obvious targets are ones to spend just a little more time on... 

As you say we certainly used the whole shopping trolley full of EP's collected for the session... and I can't remember a bad view. using any of em.. Yes, the skies were strange in that from 11 to midnight the stars almost disappeared for a wash of lightness... Your possible moisture analysis was more than likely a good explanation! 

Don't forget the couple of 'shooters' which joined us early on!

Have to say your mount was really smooth and quiet... Made my AVX sound like a coffee grinder comparatively! However, I must say I do love the AVX for ease of set up and portability...

I'm chuffed to bits my investment in that Equinox has paid off... It can be a gamble investing in equipment without at first seeing it in action... and then you have to trust you get a good one! Owning what I think is one of the best 102 scopes on the market the Altair Starwave (value for money, clarity and colour wise) I was a bit nervous with buying just another 18mm of aperture at such a high price... However the scope certainly lives up to it's reviews I am pleased to say, and look forward to getting her out under the stars as soon as clouds permit. It's good glass as you kept saying!!

Thanks again for your expertise... Great to hear the many many 'Oh Wow' comments from you as you focused in on some of your favorite targets... 

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I can't fault my 120 equinox with feathertouch. Love it. I'm glad yours is a shining example too @Patbloke. Sounds like you had a great session. All I need for mine now is a goto mount. I'm an alt az guy so need something alt az that can manage the weight.....

Steve

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3 minutes ago, Trikeflyer said:

I can't fault my 120 equinox with feathertouch. Love it. I'm glad yours is a shining example too @Patbloke. Sounds like you had a great session. All I need for mine now is a goto mount. I'm an alt az guy so need something alt az that can manage the weight.....

Steve

Steve, I was advised to upgrade my focuser to a feathertouch when I had sufficient funding... although the Crayford is beautifully smooth... It would be great to see that feather touch set up if you have any pics?

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10 minutes ago, Patbloke said:

Steve, I was advised to upgrade my focuser to a feathertouch when I had sufficient funding... although the Crayford is beautifully smooth... It would be great to see that feather touch set up if you have any pics?

Here you go. Set up for a bit of white light solar binoviewing. Holds the wedge a 2 inch explore scientific Barlow and the binoviewers with ease.

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Wow!!!!

That's nice... Thanks for digging those out so quickly (very impressed) I love a good set up pic 🙂 Is that still capable of focuser rotation? I've never seen one in action

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That sounds like a smasher @Patbloke!!  120 is a good size all round and f/7.5 is handy for all sorts of observing pursuits. 

Nice report on targets from the field test too!!  My last attempt with Theta Aur wasn’t a success. I must try harder :) 

Edited by Special K
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Nice one Nick and Pat, a great session with a lovely scope!

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Great report Nick !

I've been mightily impressed with what my ED120 can do. Even when compared with much more costly optics in the Tak and the TMB/LZOS, the Synta ED doublet produces real quality images.

 

 

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Great report - I would love to have a scope like that!

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Lovely report Nick, that’s a scope I have alway fancied, sounds like the conditions were superb too. A session remember.

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On 13/09/2018 at 09:24, Patbloke said:

 

I'm chuffed to bits my investment in that Equinox has paid off... It can be a gamble investing in equipment without at first seeing it in action... and then you have to trust you get a good one! 

I only have the 80mm Equinox, which is terrific. But I don't think I've ever seen a review of the 120 which suggests there's any gamble buying one at all - look forward to more reports

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2 hours ago, Highburymark said:

I only have the 80mm Equinox, which is terrific. But I don't think I've ever seen a review of the 120 which suggests there's any gamble buying one at all - look forward to more reports

The 120 equinox  is great I really like the views I get with mine. Although you only have an 80mm Equinox, you do have a Tak and I have never looked through a Tak 100 to compare the views with the 120 Equinox.  I'd be interested to look through  a Tak at the moon to see how much better it is than the 120 Equinox. 

Steve 

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4 hours ago, Trikeflyer said:

The 120 equinox  is great I really like the views I get with mine. Although you only have an 80mm Equinox, you do have a Tak and I have never looked through a Tak 100 to compare the views with the 120 Equinox.  I'd be interested to look through  a Tak at the moon to see how much better it is than the 120 Equinox. 

Steve 

I have a Tak FC-100DL and an ED120. The ED120 is not outgunned by the Tak IMHO. They are both fine scopes :smiley:

 

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Fantastic report guys 😀 it sounds like you had a terrific night ..... quite mean of Pat not to leave the scope with you Nick !!!! 

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