Televue Ranger


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Brand and Model:Televue Ranger
Price ($USD):850
Type:Achromatic Refractor
Attributes: un-checked Go-To un-checked PEC
Aperture:70mm (2.8")
f Ratio:f/6.8
Focal Length:480mm
Finder:None
Electric Power:None
Mount:None (3 #1/4-20 holes)
Tripod:None
Weight (lbs):3.5 lbs.
Dimensions (w/h/d):18 in. long
Description:Comes with 1.25 " helical focuser, Televue Plossl Eyepiece.

Ed Ting's Review
Ed Ting's Celestron FS80WA vs. TV Ranger

Vote Highlights Vote
Televue Ranger
I owned a Ranger for about 1 year. I have owned about 8
other scopes. The Ranger does everything OK, but nothing
really well. My Meade ETX-RA90 beat it consistently on
planets in terms of detail and the Ranger showed a lot of
color. My C5 destroyed it on deepsky objects. Additionally
because of its short focal length you are going to have to
stack barlows to get any magnification out it. In addition
to the $700 bucks or so for the scope, you are going to need
an astronomical mount to keep up with anything under
magnification. Plan on spending at least another $300 as
a photo tripod won't cut it. Considering I just paid about
$500 for a Nexstar 5 with GoTo, and it's optics are far
superior the Ranger, I think its way overpriced.

Overall Rating: 6
Optics:7 Mount:0 Ease of Use:5 Value:4
Weight: 5 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: deepsky63
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=204052


Televue Ranger
- wow quite a dramatic image. you can relaly feel the power of the water! enjoyed looking through your archive and bookmarked your blog keep up the good work.. cheers

Overall Rating: 0
Optics:1 Mount:0 Ease of Use:7 Value:5
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.3.242)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=601739


Televue Ranger
I have owned a Ranger for about two and half years. I bought mine from Greenwich Astronomy stores in Cambridge, Uk. Delivery was a little slow as it was not a stock item at this store, but it was worth waiting for. I use the Ranger on a Telepod mount.

I understand that this scope is now out of production, but you may be able to find one either second-hand or in a close-out sale.

I love this telescope! I bought it as a first 'scope. I wanted portability and a long trouble free life - say 20 years. Your average Goto job just doesn't hack it for endurance. OK, so a 70mm aperture is pretty small given the price, but the build quality and optics make it a worthwhile buy, for me at least.

Ranger is ED and described as semi-apo. It is certainly much better colour corrected than most achromats. What false colour there is is not particularly noticable as it is quite a dark purple, not the normal annoying bright halo around objects. Most object appear very white.

The big plus with this scope is that it is a wide field scope that will take medium-high magnifications. I use mine regularly on planets up to 160x, 200x on the Moon. There is no image break down at any magnification so far as I can see. I use TV eyepieces, Plossls, Naglers and Radians. The 13mm T6 Nagler is an excellent choice for this scope. An 8mm plossl plus 2.5x powermate gives you 160x for planets.

The helical focuser creates alot of comment in reviews. Don't be put off. It is silky smooth. If you use a TV 2.5x Powermate and parfocal TV eyepieces you never need to move the draw tube.

A TV Pronto with the 2" diagonal should also be considered. Same optics. The Ranger is however much lighter and I chose it because I could also use it for bird watching and plane spotting. OK, call me tight!

I have used the Ranger for web-cam and video-cam photography without problems. For the transit of Venus I used the Ranger with Baader solar film (never look directly at the Sun) on a Losmandy GM8 mount with a Minitron camera.

For about the first year I didn't have a finderscope. This was OK, but you would be advised to fit a simple small red dot finder. Set it up correctly and you can point within half a degree, much faster than goto! I use a TV quick point but the latest Synta/Skywatcher ones may be a better current choice.

The telepod mount is just excellent.

I now have 3 scopes but the little Ranger is still used most frequently. You may have heard that England is wet and cloudy. You would be right! So portable quick-look-see kind of scopes are a must have.

If, and I only say if mind, I were up-grading I would be looking at a TV76, TV85 or TMB 80.

Televue products are not cheap. Actually, it has to be said, they are expensive. But my experience is that quality is worth paying the extra for, and TeleVue certainly gives you quality. If you are thinking of buying a small scope in the £200-£400 range, please consider spending more! Honestly, you will not be disapointed spending twice or three times that much on a decent ED or Apo scope.

AJD

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:8 Mount:9 Ease of Use:8 Value:8
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.186.153)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=405568


Televue Ranger
This was my first high quality refractor. It's not an APO, but it's a big step up from most achromats. Some people call it a semi-APO, and I think that's a good description. On the Moon, there is a very, very small amount of color, and on the brightest stars, like Sirius--but nothing objectionable. Jupiter shows a very small amount of color, but you have to look for it.

The images are very sharp, and under exceptional viewing conditions (the kind that I sometimes had in northern California, and never have here in southern Idaho), I could take it up to 200x on Jupiter or Saturn before the image started to get a little soft. At 80x, Cassini's Division was visible (in good viewing conditions), and Jupiter's cloud belts were visible (though tiny). For casual looking at the Moon? Awesome. I've seen the Ring Nebula with it--but it was a struggle, using averted vision.

I don't like the helical focuser. It's very precise, but unless you have parfocal eyepieces, you will be unlocking the slide on which the focuser mounts pretty often. You'll need to use a Barlow to get adequate power for the planets with this--and refocusing after putting in the Barlow is a nuisance.

There's no mount, of course. Contrary to what Televue would like you to believe, mounting this on a camera tripod is a waste of time if you are going to use it at anything above about 30x. It's not that heavy, but camera tripods simply don't provide the level of control to track anything across the sky. I bought a EQ-1 mount from Orion, and that has worked out pretty well (considering the price). Of course, this takes away much of the advantage that the Ranger has of being small and light.

I would not consider this telescope if you want to spend much time looking at deep sky objects. The Orion Nebula is about all you can expect to see and not go, "Did I see it, or not?" If you want a scope that you can pick up (even on an equatorial mount) and carry outside for looking at brighter planets and the Moon, this works well. I have a Thousand Oaks solar filter for the Ranger, and this works quite well for this purpose.

I bought the QuikPoint reflex finder--this was a mistake. It's too bright to use for anything but the biggest and brightest objects. I also don't buy the claim that you don't need a finder for a scope like this, because your lowest power eyepiece will give you an adequate field of view. Nope. The field of view is still going to be 3 degrees or so--not at all easy to use. It's unfortunate that Televue didn't include rifle sights on the tube--this would have solved the problem.

Workmanship? Top notch. It is a thing of beauty, and feels like a well made scientific instrument--not a toy. But 70mm has its limitations. I would encourage anyone who is considering any of the 60-80 mm cheap refractors (especially the very short focal length ones that Celestron and Meade import) to consider spending a few hundred dollars more on this one, spending a few hundred more for a 100mm cheap refractor--you will be much happier.

I am considering selling mine, not because it's not a decent scope, but because I think I want to move up to a Televue 102, which has both a better focal length, and a lot more light gathering.

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:8 Ease of Use:8 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.254.10)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=241928


Televue Ranger
Recently, I started doing webcem-istry and it seems that the Ranger is really good despite its small aperture. Below you can find a link which contains some of my work. Just to remind you that I'm a beginning in photography:

http://oldfield.uhome.net/star/photo/planets.html

At least I feel satisfied.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Ease of Use:10 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.118.92)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=127420


Televue Ranger
Just come home from a 'star-party', and was pleastly surprised by the reacton comments from the public who praised how sharp the images are, especially this afternoon when I was showing them views of the Sun.

Past starpartys, I have shown Jupiter and Saturn, and again praise after praise for the sharp images.

My only complaint is that I would like to attach my digital camera, (Ricoh RDC-6000), and I am getting a very small image and is very diffacult to no whether it is in focus, otherwise I would give it a 99.9 percent, but as a stand alone telescope I will give it 98.9 percent.

Philip Reeve.

c/o Reading Astronomy Society, England.

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.64.6)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=38286


Televue Ranger
I bought this telescope in 1999, tot use it as a second scope (beneath my Vixen FL-102S refractor) for sky viewing on vacation, as well for bird watching. For the first purpose I use an old Vixen Super Polaris Mount. For Birding I use a heavy Manfrotto photo tripod with a fluid pan head. I can use it also as a guiding scope.
The included 45 degree Amici-prism works fine at low magnifications until 50x (birding). At higher magnifications (sky viewing), severe color errors appear. If I use a rectangle from Vixen the images ar far better!

The star test at 120x (Vixen LV4 eyepiece) shows a tiny bit of spherical abberration. Little Color is visible at high magnifications (120x) at Venus, Full Moon (violet) and Mars (red!). No wonder, for these are f/6.8 optics and no apochromat. Images however are razorsharp, until 120x. Higher magnifications I do not use with this scope. Beautiful contrasts on Jupiter, Saturn (Cassini division easily visible).
Epsilon Bootes splitted, which did not succeed with 80mm f/4 Vixen Planet 80S I earlier had. Performs very well at deep sky, especially at low magnifications. Cirrus nebula (Cyg) with Lumicon OIII-filter is beautiful! With an Identi View solar filter it's a marvellous solar scope!

The scope is solidly built. The helical focuser works fine. But there are some bad things: the eyepiece-holder cannot be removed to replace it by a camera adapter or a better eyepiece holder (e.g. Baader T2 system). The eyepiece holder has unreliable plastic bolts to fix eyepieces. Replacing them by metal ones is difficult, since in Holland one is using metric bolts.

I can recommend this scope to everyone!

greetings from Holland
"Piet Fluoriet"

Overall Rating: 8
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.83.151)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=38285


Televue Ranger
Just another overpriced, overhyped scope from Televue.

Overall Rating: 5
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.233.227)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=38284


Televue Ranger
I had a Celestron spc 80 that I sold to buy the ranger.What I wanted was a compact refractor that would approximate the performance of my spc 80 and that is exactly what I got. Sure it has a little color but no more then my spc 80 did and at f 6.8 instead of f 11.4 I think that says a lot about its color correction plus it has twice the field of view.Despite the 80 mm's larger aperture i've found the ranger gives up very little to the larger celestron in planatary performance.In my opinion if you want a fast handling high performance compact scope the ranger is the best deal on the market

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.10.122)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=38283


Televue Ranger
This telescope isn't cheap, but worth every penny. Lightweight, solid, and highly portable w/ superb optics. My Ranger can take 300x and still be useful. (i.e. delta Cygni comfortably split using 8mm plossl & powermate, Izar awesome at same mag, Polaris companion also easily seen @ 300x from light polluted backyard). The views at dark sites are simply amazing. M81 & M82 through a 19mm Panoptic at a dark site will give you the willies. And yes, NGC 3077 (though extremely faint) is visible also. The contrast this scope provides is unreal. The dark lane running down the center of M82 screams at you. And the scope loves nebula filters. Beautiful, haunting views of M97 (Owl Nebula) @ 63x with Lumicon OIII. If you have a choice between buying a 12.5" Newt to be used only in a light polluted backyard or buying a Ranger that'll travel with you 1/2 hour outta town to a dark site, BUY THE RANGER. My mounting system is a Telepod head and tripod. Perfect. Get an Xl Tarmac tripod bag for the head/tripod and you can literally climb a mountain and observe from the peak. I've done this several times. The scope and tripod are so light, you don't even feel the weight. This scope gets a 10. No doubt about it.

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.252.65)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=38281

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