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Is it possible to have.......

Started by Ron777, 08/25/2003 01:10PM
Posted 08/25/2003 01:10PM Opening Post
just ONE good quality scope and be happy with it? I am wondering this as now I have 3 scopes, and sometimes find myself wanting another, and another... etc. :-O If I lug the big dob out and look at Mars, then I wonder "How will it look in the 6 inch" etc. If I take less aperture out for viewing, then I want the bigger scope!
Portability, aperture, contrast, resolution! Calgon take me away LOL

Seems like it would be so nice to just have ONE scope, and always use that trusty friend and just be satisfied!
Has anyone ever had just one and been happy with it? What was it if so?

Take care!
Posted 08/25/2003 01:20PM #1
The optics of my current observing kit are as follows:

12.5" f5 Mag1 Portaball with 0.99 Strehl Zambuto Mirror
35mm Tele Vue Panoptic
19mm Tele Vue Panoptic
13mm Tele Vue Nagler
9mm Tele Vue Nagler
3-6mm Tele Vue Nagler Zoom

I keep everything but the Portaball in the trunk of my car. I can be ready to go to a dark site to observe with less than 2 minutes notice. Everything that I have works superbly well. With this set of equipment, the only thing that I occasionally complain about is the weather! In short, this is a good quality telescope, and I am happy with it.

Anyone who saves up their money could probably afford a reasonably good quality instrument. Deciding to be happy after you have such riches is a personal choice. :-)
Posted 08/25/2003 02:08PM #2
Probably not possible for the majority of us.

I've settled in on a 4" refractor for everynight viewing - either on a folding wood tripod, or on a Gemini/G-11 for serious hunting and imaging.

I sold my LX90 to help fund the G-11, but knew I would miss the aperature. I had a really good discussion with an experienced fellow at "that other store" - the one with the 7 in its name - and I really thought I'd get upsold to a 11 or 12" scope. BUT - he strongly recommended a 10" dob- best mix of 'portability' and aperature. So I got a 10" PDHQ Discovery - so far so good. It was fun the other night to compare M13 in both scopes!

So for me, the 4" APO and 10" dob seem to have cured a bad case of scope OCD.
Posted 08/25/2003 02:13PM #3
Well Ron, you know, "happy with it" is a state of mind and the the only answer in my humblest opinion is the zen of self-satisfication ;-).

Although I enjoy the finer, more detail view through my 8" Discovery PDHQ Dob, I've found I seem to be viewing more through the old trusty "well-worn" ;-) 4" TV-102 Light Cup since I got the 8-incher. Perhaps, like Ed Ting (thank Jim for the link), I find my 4-incher Light Cup to be the default scope (used to be the only ;-). I've been and still am very happy with the view through the 4-incher, especially of Mars this apparition and if someone were to rob me blind on some lonely dark road, I would let him take my Dob (adding to him that bigger is better and "more valuable" ;-).

The Light Cup's morale is: the external search for telescope satisfaction and the external search for telescope perfection is the internal search for balance ;-).

Ron B[ee]
PS - the TEC-140 is looking mighty tempting ;-).
PS - ask me again during the gas giant season and who knows then ;-).
Posted 08/25/2003 04:25PM #4
Here's an equipment junkie crackpot theory: the most versatile scope is the one that makes constructive use of the largest range of EPs.

On that basis, maybe the new Televue NP 128 would rank right up there. If I had an NP 128 I'd want at least: 41 Panopic; 27 Panoptic; 17 Nagler T4; 11 Nagler T6; 9 Nagler T6; 7 Nagler T6; 5 Nagler T6; 3.5 Nagler T6; and 2.5 Nagler T6. With that setup you could do great wide-field Milky Way sweeps, spectacular open cluster observing, fairly serious planetary observing; and because of the great contrast and nicely graded mid-range EP assortment, you could reel in a fair amount of deep sky detail as well.

That's nine EPs, and you could obviously salt a few more in there (what, no Nagler 22??) without creating serious redundancy. Can anyone think of another scope which could make constructive use of so many EPs?

By the way, no disrespect for Pentax fans, or others. I just happen to be most familiar with Televues.

Posted 08/26/2003 06:08AM #5
I think it possible to have one good quality scope and be happy. However, there are good reasons to have more than one scope, no one scope can do everything so compromises will have to be made. A scope that can provide 4 or 5 degree FOVs will have limited aperture for viewing galaxies, faint objects and faint detail. And then there is the portability issue. 15 minutes to view, what are you going to do with a scope that takes 10 minutes to setup. But that scope that sets up and is cooled and ready for viewing in 1 minute may be disappointing when working the Virgo cluster.

I consider the minimum to cover all bases would be 2 scopes, something small and fast ratio that is good for wide field low power views and medium power views and doubles as a spotting scope plus something with some aperture to operate at higher magnifications.