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KiannJames

Which travel scope is the best?

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I’m looking for a travel scope or possibly a normal but portable scope, I want one that’s decent at dso’s, not too heavy and one that’s compact, I’m looking for one between £100-£200, which one do you recommend?

 

Edited by KiannJames

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My ST102 is small, portable and within that low price bracket. It’s pretty good at low power, delivering nice wide field views.  It’s particularly good on larger DSO’s like M31.  Touring the Milky Way with it is a real pleasure, a mass of jewels in the wide field of view. Two things though... it only really ‘performs’ on fainter DSO’s at dark sky sites...and don’t consider Lunar or Planetary with it as it is not at all designed for this.

ST120 would have a bit more punch on the DSO’s.

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Much depends on your definition of travel scope. Do you mean portable enough to go in a car or wanting to take on a plane?

The Heritage 130P is well worth considering and is within budget. An ST80 would make a very compact travel scope and would work well on a photo tripod.

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It’s quite a conundrum is the travel scope, in fact there are quite a few threads discussing the difficulties. Thing is, by making a set-up more portable, you lose capability and also stability.  

The 130p mentioned by Stu will be better on DSO’s than the refractors mentioned, but I’m not sure if you can get the base into a rucksack. Also the refractors...they need a mount...if you went with ST80 you could attach a photo tripod on the outside of your rucksack.  But the bigger ST102 / ST120 need something more substantial to mount them on. 

It’s worth knowing that it is very easy to damage a scope by putting a scope and mount into a rucksack together, the aluminium tube of the scope will get dented.

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The 130P can be taken off the base and mounted on a tripod too. I actually think they should sell it more cheaply without the base as an option. The OTA has a dovetail on it so it can be put on a normal alt az mount on a tripod. That might blow your budget but would be more portable and I find the scope much more useable in that configuration. I picked up an OTA only for £50 off Astroboot which was handy.

There are some great threads on this scope and the mods that can be done to it, I've posted a few here.

If the 130P can't work for you, I do think the ST80 would be a good option, very portable, useable on a photo tripod and good for widefield observing, not great for planets due to the CA at higher powers.

 

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17 hours ago, Stu said:

Much depends on your definition of travel scope. Do you mean portable enough to go in a car or wanting to take on a plane?

The Heritage 130P is well worth considering and is within budget. An ST80 would make a very compact travel scope and would work well on a photo tripod.

The Heritage 130 is a fantastic little scope.

 

Glen.

 

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+1 for the Heritage 130p as already suggested. 

It really is excellent value - I run it on a SW Az5 tripod mount.

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+2 for the heritage 130p. Great little scope. Can be easily mounted on a photo tripod for portability. I use a Baader vixen dovetail clamp on a old photo tripod I have. It works well & scope performs well above its weight. 

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The Heritage 130P is a fantastic scope. It's so compact that I couldn't find mine for 2 yrs. 

Someone put it on a shelf in the shed in its box, in a black bin liner. 

 

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