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Advice on choosing new grab n go set up.


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Hi all

Im currently researching a new grab and go set up(my only set up infact) and would appreciate some advice.

I currently have it down to these three scopes.

Refractors from Ian King Imaging

(70mm apo half way down the page)

TS Individual ED APO 70/420mm - 2' Crayford - Carbon - Koffer

Skywatcher Equinox 66 Pro ED APO OTA | Telescopes | Rother Valley Optics

Im leaning towards either the ian king scope or the one from telescope service, as it seems they are very similar indeed. Any reason to pick one over the other?

Also, i think the equinox will only accept 1.25" diagonals. is that right? and any benefit in 2" eyepieces?

I have the Horizon 8115 tripod so im assuming this would be ok for any of these scopes?

Any input is appreciated

John

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Hi Nicnac

I was pretty certain the horizon could handle them but just wanted to check:)

Ive chosen them mainly due to size really, and because of the good reports ive read on small APO fracs.

i mainly observe for around an hour or two and setting up and lugging heavy equipment is not my cup of tea at all. I had a celestron slt 102 and hated the set up times/size/weight.

Also, i have terrible LP were i live and getting mobile is a necessity, especially as i like camping in the lakes and wales, so thought these scopes would be easy to transport/set up.

Regards

John

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Hi John, cannot really comment on the scopes, they all look pretty good and I would take anyone of them, for visual only I might add, seems a nice way to accuire a grab and go set up. 2" ep's would be an advantage as you will have a wider fov which is great for open clusters like M45 for instance.

I would be thinking of a different option for mounting one if it were me, perhaps a mini Vixen Porta Mount would be good, just a thought.

I am sure which ever you choose the views will be brilliant :)

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Hi Nicnac

Thought about a small mak yes. although the cooldown issue bothers me somewhat, along with the small FOV, and the potential dew problem.

i like the fracs for the nice wide field and zero maintenance.

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@Nexus. If the 2" EP's give a bigger FOV then that is definite plus for me:)

Ill have a look at the vixen porta mount.

Any particular reason why to choose a vixen over the horizon?

cheers

JP

Edit...just had a quick look at the vixen, the slow motion controls look ideal:)

Edited by johnnyp
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Hi Nicnac

the decisions in this hobby are never ending it seems:)

i really like the horizon and hadnt envisioned replacing it.

Ive never pushed the magnification but would want to occasionally with a small APO due to the much better colour correction.

I see in your sig you have a small mak and horizon. do you use this set up? if so, how does it cope with high magnification?

cheers

John

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Hi Johnny, the reason for the purchase of a better mount is down to stability, I noticed the weight on the IKI as 2kgs, I am thinking as when I bought my big bins, the better more robust the mount/tripod the more you will use the scope, less wobble.

What is the maximum load the Horizon wil take? I have had a look on the net and could not find what it is.

I can imagine you will get a few posts from members who may have got very similair scopes and can advice well on that option

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Nexus....i believe the horizon is good for scopes and bins up to 100mm. but the wobble factor is something i will definitely keep in mind.

Nicnac

yes i like this one too. nothing to do with the visuals but i like the asthetics also.

I notice the TS uses FK-61 glass, were as the equinox uses FPL-51 glass (not sure on the ian king version)

Do you know the difference between the different types of glass used?

cheers for all the input so far.

John

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Ian King is a really great retailer but then so are TS... Not much help there! Except that Ian is in the UK.

A 2 inch EP is a treat in small scopes and from a dark site 70mm can show the entire Veil complex with an O111 filter. Ditto Rosette.

I noitice the difference visually between 70mm (Pronto) and 66 (WO ZS66). Used Prontos are cheap but very heavy.

Olly

Edited by ollypenrice
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I am very happy with the IKI 70mm which is very compact, well finished and works well. The view is nearly colour free, it will magnify to about 100x and the focuser is smooth. There is nowhere to put a finder, but with a 30mm 1.25", a finder is not really required - even less so with the 2" WA 38mm which gives wonderful panoramas. You do need a diagonal to bring it to focus and the whole ends up somewhat unbalanced. I understand that both it and the TS are manufactured by:

Kunming United Optics Corporation

There is an independent review of the TS and other 70mm refractors (Google translation) at:

Google Translate

I

Edited by cs1cjc
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I had the TS 70 Carbon tube, for a while that is. I used to have a Megrez 72 and fairly recently I was looking to buy something similar in size to replace it and so I bought the TS 70. I did indeed look the part, but I was so disappointed in it's optical performance compared to the Megrez 72 that I sold it on a month later. It just lacked the sharpness of the Megrez 72. Maybe I just got a poor example.:p

However it all ended well as I then bought the TS80/480 FPL-53 triplet. A bit more expensive yes, but a stunningly good scope that compares favourably to a TMB and the OTA only weighs 2.4kg.:)

John

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I had the TS 70 Carbon tube, for a while that is. I used to have a Megrez 72 and fairly recently I was looking to buy something similar in size to replace it and so I bought the TS 70. I did indeed look the part, but I was so disappointed in it's optical performance compared to the Megrez 72 that I sold it on a month later. It just lacked the sharpness of the Megrez 72. Maybe I just got a poor example.:p

However it all ended well as I then bought the TS80/480 FPL-53 triplet. A bit more expensive yes, but a stunningly good scope that compares favourably to a TMB and the OTA only weighs 2.4kg.:)

John

I must say that I would go for that size as well.

Olly

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I am very happy with the IKI 70mm which is very compact, well finished and works well. The view is nearly colour free, it will magnify to about 100x and the focuser is smooth. There is nowhere to put a finder, but with a 30mm 1.25", a finder is not really required - even less so with the 2" WA 38mm which gives wonderful panoramas. You do need a diagonal to bring it to focus and the whole ends up somewhat unbalanced. I understand that both it and the TS are manufactured by:

Kunming United Optics Corporation

There is an independent review of the TS and other 70mm refractors (Google translation) at:

Google Translate

I

The fact that the scope will become unbalanced is somewhat of a worry. Would this be the case with 1.25" diagonals and eyepieces?

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I had the TS 70 Carbon tube, for a while that is. I used to have a Megrez 72 and fairly recently I was looking to buy something similar in size to replace it and so I bought the TS 70. I did indeed look the part, but I was so disappointed in it's optical performance compared to the Megrez 72 that I sold it on a month later. It just lacked the sharpness of the Megrez 72. Maybe I just got a poor example.:p

However it all ended well as I then bought the TS80/480 FPL-53 triplet. A bit more expensive yes, but a stunningly good scope that compares favourably to a TMB and the OTA only weighs 2.4kg.:)

John

Hi John

Seeing as my only scope is a 70 celestron travel scope(and i quite enjoy the views), im hoping that with either the TS or IKI i wont be too dissapointed?

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The fact that the scope will become unbalanced is somewhat of a worry. Would this be the case with 1.25" diagonals and eyepieces?

The lack of balance on the foot, which gets worse as the telescope is pointed higher meant that it was almost unusable on my camera tripod. The Vixen Mini porta does not have this problem because the telescope is mounted sideways.

On diagonals, a 2" is big and heavy so I also now have 1.25" for travel. In the car I take six (TMB and clone) eyepieces and diagonal in a case, but carrying on a plane is have a foam lined bag which takes the diagonal and three eyepieces.

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