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    neal_mlc's Avatar
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    Default Zhumell 8-24 Zoom EP



    About a year ago I purchased a Zhumell 8-24 Zoom EP and have been happy with it. Now after a year's use I think I can write a more comprehensive and objective review for it.

    Mechanically, it is sound and easy to operate. It has a smooth twist without the click stops that other zooms have. I personnally don't like the click stops so this makes me happy. It is heavy and it pushes the teflon bearings on my dob past their limit but this is correctable with a small counter weight. I have to mention that I also have a 9X50 RACI and a telrad that adds to the weight as well.

    Sharp focus is easily achievable throughout the magnification settings.

    Optically it has a pretty severe coma around the edge, maybe 5%-10% of the total FOV. I find this very distracting when searching for dim objects. The light transmission leaves something to be desired. For the brighter objects that do not have their light spread out over a large area, such as a globular cluster this is not a problem but objects like galaxies it is. For example, M33 or M51 which are relatively "bright" lose approximately 25% of their light through this lens when compared to a 25mm EP. This loss of light becomes noticable when 2 things occur. The magnitude of the object is about 5.5 or dimmer and how large the object is in relation to its magnitude. This EP has no problem with an object like Bodes Galaxy or the Cigar Galaxy but has serious issues with something like the Triangulum or Whirlpool Galaxies. You can still see them, they are just dimmer.

    Color Transmission is not an issue, The greens and grays of Orion's Nebula are clearly discernable as are the different colored bands of Jupiter.

    Overall, I really like my Zhumell Zoom. Regardless of the two issues I mentioned it is still a capable and useful peice of equipment. It eliminates the problem of having to swap out EPs whenever I want to change magnifications. If you can afford one of the higher end Zooms like the Meade you would probably be happier but for someone who is on a budget, like me, this is the Zoom to get.
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    Thumbs up

    Thank you for your review neal_mlc..it's right on time for me! I just bought my scope and wondered if there were any disadvantages to a zoom. I bought some Orion HighLights EPs and I like them, but it is a little hassle to go from 20mm to 7.5mm to 12.5mm. I tend to jump around a lot as I am trying to figure which mag is best for me to start my viewing session.
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