Discovery PDHQ 12.5"


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Brand and Model:Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
Price ($USD):1249
Type:Newtonian
Attributes: un-checked Go-To un-checked PEC
Aperture:318mm (12.5")
f Ratio:f/5
Focal Length:1587mm
Finder:Telrad
Electric Power:
Mount:Dobsonian
Tripod:
Weight (lbs):89
Dimensions (w/h/d):
Description:Discovery's PDHQ Page

Affordable Astronomy's Review

Vote Highlights Vote
Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
Depending on your point of view, this scope could be anywhere from a "9" to perhaps a "6". If you want great optics in a customizable package, this scope is for you. I'm giving it a solid "8" for the following reasons, (BTW, I consider "8" to be pretty darn good).

I had done my homework so despite the promise of 1 month delivery I had set my expectations to more like 3 months. To my delight the scope arrived in 7 weeks. For the most part, the packing was well done and protected the scope fine. Two minor nits were just a few crumbs of sand on the mirror which were easily blown off, and some spray foam got on the side panel of the rocker box where the protective plastic pulled away, (BTW, I hate spray foam but it does a good job of protecting things).

Assembly went pretty well with a couple of minor issues and one semi-major issue. The major issue was the mirror cell was the wrong size, (too small) for the inside dimension of the sonotube. I went to the local hardware store and picked up a dozen washers. I've attached 4 to each of the legs of the cell to get the mirror to center in the opening. It's still not perfect but it works.

A couple of the minor issues were 1) the post for the finderscope bracket wasn't aligned to the optical axis so the finderscope itself is skewed in the opposite direction to compensate, and 2) the altitude pads were too small and too far apart to allow for smooth movement. I picked up a larger piece of teflon and cut it to the correct size as well as moved them in to more of a 90 degree position (with respect to the center of the trunion). The scope now moves silky smooth.

I've also added some gussets to stabilize the rocker box, removable wheelbarrow handles to cart it around, and added some fans but that's more of a personal preference thing.

When the skies cooperate the Discovery throws up views about as good as 12.5" will allow. So if you are at all handy and willing to put in a little work you can save some $$'s over the bigger names and have a scope that performs about as good.

One last note - mine is a solid tube. I can't speak to the current crop of split-tubes.

Best,
Mike

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:9 Mount:8 Ease of Use:8 Value:9
Weight: 20 (Notable Vote)
Date:
By: msuther
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=533015


Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
Great scope at a great price. Mine has excellent optics. Focuser is great, and scope is very well built.

This scope is a great value.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Mount:9 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 7 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: Nexstar8
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=420224


Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
Great scope for the price or even more. The optics are first rate, views of Saturn are the best I’ve ever seen; I’ve finally seen the Encke Division in Saturn’s rings. Altitude and azimuth motions were fine as purchased, but I improved them by adding one milk judge washer to the central Teflon azimuth pad and moved the altitude Teflon pads from 120 deg. separation to 85 deg. Both motions move very smoothly now and I routinely track planets at 300x without any problem. Balance hasn’t been a problem either when switching between a heavy 5mm Radian and a small 4mm orthoscopic eyepiece.

But be warned, this scope is heavy! I’ve put wheelbarrow handles and wheels on the rocker box which make it easy to move from my garage to my back yard, but picking it up and putting it in the back of my SUV is not an easy task for one person. Also, the mirror is slightly over 2” thick, so cool down time is long; use a fan if you’re going to do planetary observing.

As to delivery, they original said two months but after five months of calling and waiting, I called to cancel my order. But what do you know, they said it would be ready for pickup in four days if I still wanted it.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Mount:8 Ease of Use:8 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.63.103)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=423311


Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
Optics are fantastic, the DOB mount is smooth, and the 2" focuser is of high quality. What else do you need in a DOB? Its the best bang for the buck. The company was responseive to my inquiries and I got the scope eraly! (They said 90 days and I got it in 4 weeks!).

The primary mirror is clearly made by a craftsman. The starts are pinpoint sharp, unlike all my other telexopes, that show fuzz balls. So, if you want a high quality light bucket, this scope is for you. I highly recommend this telescope!

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Mount:9 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.118.102)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=396709


Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
i used this scope... seen for myself that it is a GREAT scope..
optics... for the money ,they are extreamly well done.. i seen MUCH more money spent and not get optics this good..
no not get me wrong, they are GOOD optics.. not extreamly good..
all in all the scopes over all preformance was well above what i had expected from this price range..
focuser. smooth..!!
yes, collimation is extreamly critical..!! hell ALL reflector telescopes have to be collimated.!!
once this is done..!! SMOOTH sailing mate.>!!
as for the eye piece that comes with the scope.> throw it away... use is for a fishing weight or SOMETHING that has NOTHING to do with astronomy..!!
sides that... i have not a bad word to say about the scope itself...
IT WORKS...
thanks for you time...
Darrell

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Mount:10 Ease of Use:9 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.89.237)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=203032


Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
This is my 3rd discovery scope' all of them being the pdhq line.This scope took 3 months to get with them telling me 30 days which i knew was not going to happen.Discovery has been good to me in getting my scope to me in a decent time frame.Delivery was great all 3 boxes arrived yellow freight no damage.First light has been good with decent images. the weather here has been bad so a good star test will have to wait intill such a time.This scope came with a helix laser which is nice.Scope movement is good for a dob of this price,Best thing about this scope is it takes seconds to take out side and start veiwing.I give the optic's 7 for now intill i can get some really good nights to test but so far thje views are very good. ALOT OF SCOPE FOR AROUND $1300 with shipping highy recommended. THANKS BOB HART

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:7 Mount:7 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.64.91)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=195966


Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
The optical performance of this scope is great but everything else about this company is horrible. My major disappointment was the lead-time for the scope from Discovery. Every time I called Discovery they told me they were working on filling orders and it would be another 6 weeks. I ordered my scope 12/2000 and received it 07/2001. Because of the long wait Discovery gave me several free accessories, which included a free telrad finder and a laser collimator. When I received my scope I checked the optical collimation with my new free laser collimator and determined the optics were out of alignment. The free laser collimator was not functioning properly and caused my scope to be severely out of alignment. (I reported this to Discovery and they replaced the original laser with another non-functioning laser.) The laser inside the collimator tool was not aliened correctly and made collimating the optics impossible. At first I thought the optics were bad. I used a Cheshire eyepiece to fix the problem cause by my free gift. The scope was seriously out of collimation when I received it and the laser issues did not help the situation at all. The eyepieces included with the scope are very poor quality. So with these factors against the scope I really thought I had wasted my money on this purchase. I do not recommend Discovery Telescopes at all for no other reason except extremely poor customer service.

Overall Rating: 3
Optics:9 Mount:8 Ease of Use:7 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.37.120)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=180094

>The optical performance of this scope is great but everything else about this company is horrible. My major disappointment was the lead-time for the scope from Discovery. Every time I called Discovery they told me they were working on filling orders and it would be another 6 weeks. I ordered my scope 12/2000 and received it 07/2001. Because of the long wait Discovery gave me several free accessories, which included a free telrad finder and a laser collimator.  When I received my scope I checked the optical collimation with my new free laser collimator and determined the optics were out of alignment. The free laser collimator was not functioning properly and caused my scope to be severely out of alignment. (I reported this to Discovery and they replaced the original laser with another non-functioning laser.) The laser inside the collimator tool was not aliened correctly and made collimating the optics impossible. At first I thought the optics were bad. I used a Cheshire eyepiece to fix the problem cause by my free gift. The scope was seriously out of collimation when I received it and the laser issues did not help the situation at all. The eyepieces included with the scope are very poor quality. So with these factors against the scope I really thought I had wasted my money on this purchase. I do not recommend Discovery Telescopes at all for no other reason except extremely poor customer service.


Hey dude!   you forgot to talk about the telescope!!

Discovery PDHQ 12.5"
When using quality eyepieces the views in this scope are great. Its a very professional looking Dob. My only complaint with this scope is its spider vanes. They are thin and flimsy. also the eyepieces that come with the scope are marginal at best. To get full potenial from this scope buy quality eyepieces. I use UO Orthos and Televue Plossis which are a big improvement over the generic plossis that came with the scope. The scope is easily worth $500 more than $1200 it cost me.

Also the people at Discovery were nice and were willing to make the changes I wanted to the scope. Lead times are a little long, but it was worth the wait. Nice Product!

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Mount:8 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.207.188)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=128630

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