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Thread: APO Refractors, should I get one?

  1. #11
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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?



    My friend at work just bout a 6" refractor

    I have a 125 mm mak(meade etx) and visually we can barely know which view is from which scope.

    Then the refractor is on a eq non motorized mount

    I think he paid near $2000 for a manual refractor he will use for visual purposes
    Great scope.....but I think for visual use its too pricey and a scope a fraction of that cost would have done the same job

  2. #12
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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?

    For visual observing, you want the biggest aperture you can afford. Big refractors are expensive. Where refractors excell is for AP, where focal ratio is much more important than aperture.

    Only you can decide if the view through a refractor is worth sacrificing big aperture. I wouldn't do it.
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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?

    If you are a visual observer your gonna see much more with big optics than you will with any little APO. Get a big newt buddy.
    Then I guess I would say that
    Steve

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    Default Re : APO Refractors, should I get one?

    Complicated question with no cut to the chase answer but here goes on a few thoughts. Dobs great views, cheap compared to all others ( but you drive it and AP is not a strong point). Cats on Alt/Az mounts start just a little more than Dobs ( big bang for the buck, AP good bright objects DSO's not so good, great for viewing, most on goto mounts, low need for sky knowlege). Cats on GEM's a little bit more ( one and a half step up on difficulty for a newbie, good for AP high f#, great for viewing, most goto, many good ones to choose from. Refractors tripplets about three times as much as a high quality CAT ( yes high end ones are better than most scopes, killer for AP, great for viewing, need to upscale price of mount, high overhead on pocket book and knowlege of the sky). My two keeper scopes are a Cat on a Alt/Az and a 102 refractor on a Losmandy GEM. The total cost with improvements and killer EP's no AP stuff is about $3700 for the CAT. The total is not done yet on the refractor but at this time the mount, good EP's, finder, rings, diag., scope, no AP is north of $8000. The views in the refractor and the CAT are the same with a quick glance but better by some not a lot in the refractor if you dwell and study the image. For AP the refractor will be better, but not better than a large CAT.
    For friends and family or casual nights my CAT ( CPC 800 XLT) is the scope. Hope this helps
    Bruce
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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?

    There are only a limited number of branded APO refreactors available in Australia, this limits your choices significantly and also means there is some serious price gouging happening. Get used to that by the way. Lots of the helpful people on the forums here are from the USA and other non-gouged markets so when they see $2000 they picture grand equipment and the likes. In Australia $2000 is not going to get you as much, that's not to say you can't get some good pieces though.

    As has been mentioned an APO is really skewed more towards photography than visual, if that's the way you want to go then know that an 80mm APO in Australia (of decent quality/brand) is going to cost you about $1300-$1600, usually without a mount. Anything over 80mm is going to be pushing closer to $2000+. There are some disparities to that but it's a good baseline.
    For observing planets you will probably want a long focal length/high f-ratio, an f/10 scope is a good planetary.

    The Celestron NexStar range of SCT telescopes (I'm biased I know) are fantastic starter pieces. They feature GOTO functionality meaning you can get into observing faster without needing to learn the sky (that can come later) and the high f/ratio means they are well suited for planetary viewing.

    Steer clear of Ozhut/Ozscopes as you will be paying 50-100% more buying from them. Some reputable places (albeit still much more expensive than US) are Bintel and Andrews Communications.
    Cameron.

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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?

    Thanks a lot for all the help guys! While still I'd love to get and APO, the aperture size I'd want is just totally out of my reach at this stage unfortunately. I think ill go a Nexstar 8se or something similar and then perhaps upgrade later in life. Might even be able to get a few accessories as well!

    I'll report back when I get it, can't wait to develop this awesome hobby further!

    Cheers

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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?

    Quote Originally Posted by noecrib View Post
    I'll report back when I get it, can't wait to develop this awesome hobby further!
    I think that's very important. I'm not into AP plus I live in a white zone (bad!) so there's no "need" for an APO - "want" is another story though but I can't justify it Looking at my signature you'll see with time I've developed into what is known as a "refractor head"

    Be patient, give yourself time and see where this hobby leads you - good luck!

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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?

    Quote Originally Posted by noecrib View Post
    Thanks a lot for all the help guys! While still I'd love to get and APO, the aperture size I'd want is just totally out of my reach at this stage unfortunately. I think ill go a Nexstar 8se or something similar and then perhaps upgrade later in life. Might even be able to get a few accessories as well!

    I'll report back when I get it, can't wait to develop this awesome hobby further!

    Cheers
    If you can afford it the new models of the NexStar range come mounted on the AVX, being an equatorial it is preferable over the old wibbly-wobbly alt-az setup for a later venture into astrophotography. Of course if you just plan visual work (and maybe later if you decide to go that way you can pickup a new mount/OTA etc.) then the 8SE is a fantastic scope. The aperture is large enough to capture a lot of light while the focal length is "long" enough to get in on objects/planets.
    Cameron.

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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?

    Enough good opinions above to make your head swim.

    If at all possible, go to a few star parties and look through a bunch of scopes. That way you will learn what you like and will be able to choose accordingly.

    Until then you'll just be guessing.
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    Default Re: APO Refractors, should I get one?

    Hello;

    I was recently faced with the same decision and opted for an Achro. Let me explain, there is no doubt that the view through an Apo is spectacular, especially the larger apertures. That said though I couldn't justify the additional cost of an Apo when my collection of eyepieces was so scant. I ended up purchasing a Celestron 120XLT and with the savings I got some better oculars and a nicer mount. If you already have a nice collection of glass, a good mount and have plenty of practice with a scope an Apo may be worth the dough but if you're lacking in any of these fields look at the Achros again. Go to a good scope shop and tell them how you're going to use the scope and what other equipment you have. You'd be surprised what a higher end eyepiece will do for an Achro.

    Cheers and clear skies!
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    Luis A Uribe
    Arvada, Colorado, USA

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