Vixen FL102S


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Brand and Model:Vixen FL102S
Price ($USD):2500
Type:Apochromatic Refractor
Attributes: un-checked Go-To un-checked PEC
Aperture:102mm (4")
f Ratio:f/9
Focal Length:920mm
Finder:6x30
Electric Power:
Mount:GP
Tripod:
Weight (lbs):lbs.
Dimensions (w/h/d):
Description:Very high contrast at high power.

Fluorite Refractor


Vote Highlights Vote
Vixen FL102S
I recently purchased one of the Vixen 4" flourite refractors. It is approximately 10 years old. The tube is solid black without any manufacturers decals. People first walking up to it the other night to look at Jupiter and Saturn thought it was one of the newer Chinese achromats before looking through it.

It is relatively light (Orion specs for a new one says 8lbs) but I have a 2" focuser so that adds a bit of weight. The focuser isn't the smoothest, but for the cost of the scope (used or new) it's definately acceptable.

For three nights the past week I have been able to have long looks at Jupiter and Saturn. Two nights had decent seeing, one had very good seeing. The best night Saturn was able to be viewed at 230x (that's as high as I could go) and was still tack sharp. Jupiter wouldn't take as much magnification but still showed a tremendous amount of detail. The GRS stood out quite prominantly. One night while a shadow transit was taking place, between 2 8" SCTs, a 3.5" Mak and the Vixen refractor, only the Vixen was able to show the shadow.

Each night there was a great deal of contrast, sharpness and clarity to the planetary images. Each time the view would snap into focus. Way more detail could be discerned than compared with my 5" Celeston SCT.

A quick glimpse at M42 showed more than I expected for a 4" scope, but that's not what this scope is going to excell at. If you're looking for a small refractor that is cheaper than the AP's, TMB's or TV's, if this particular scope is a good sample of what the Vixen flourites are like, you'll be happy.

Cost-wise it can't be beat. The optics in mine appear excellent. The only slightly negative thing to say is with the focuser. Nonetheless I'd stil give this scope a 10.

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 3 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.154.73)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39255


Vixen FL102S
I bought this scope many years ago, February 1991, in combination with a Vixen Super Polaris mount. I later changed the mount by a Zeiss Ib, very stable and accurate.
I use the telescope in my own backyard and at the public observatory which I am a member of.

The FL-102S still is my main instrument, for I never could find an instrument at an affordable price that could beat it.

The star test shows very, very slight difference in out of focus diffraction patterns. This difference disappears if a green filter is used. In focus the images are razorsharp and color free.

The views through the FL102S are superb, especially on planets and double stars.
Friends, club members and visitors of the observatory are stunned by the planet images, even just after they saw the same planets through the 12" Newton main telescope of the observatory.
My scope performs also very well in combination with a Starlight MX5-C CCD-camera.

Over years I compared the FL 102S with numerous other (larger) telescopes - side by side - such as 6" and 8" Newton Dobs, Celestron C8, Meade LX200 (8").
Images in these scopes were brighter than in the Vixen fluorite, but almost none of these could show the subtle details on planets the Vixen showed.
Equal double stars were often split better in these larger reflectors, as a result of the larger aperture. At unequal double stars however (delta Cygni, theta Aurigae), the Fluorite won.

I have to admit that the circumstances in Holland, where I live, the athmospheric conditions are mostly bad. Above comparisons may show other results under ideal seeing.

Nowadays the FL-102S is offered as 102mm f/9, also focal length 920 mm.
Mine however is f/8.8 (focal length 900 mm). Obviously the optics design has been changed.

This review concerns only the OTA. The mechanical quality of the tube is good, but not perfect.

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 3 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.83.151)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39253


Vixen FL102S
Hello,

I bought the Vixen FL102S 1,5 years ago. Since 25 years I'm looking to the Stars with Newton from 114 until 200mm and Refraktors from 60 to 120mm.
The Vixen FL102 shows the Stars very fine. On Mars I could see so much details like in no other 4" Refractor before using magnification until 250x. I can't find any false Color even on the brightest objekts with the highest magnifikation. The Vixen FL102 is cooling dow in a few minutes, even in the winter I don't have to wait longer than 20 minutes before I can use high magnification.
I think the Vixen FL 102 S plays in the league of the best 4" APO's on the world. Only the fokusser could be better - I have change the fokusser and use now a Moonlite CF2-V - wonderful!
The great scope gets from me the 10.

Best regards from Germany

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.241.216)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=504548


Vixen FL102S
views are extremely contrasty, detailed, clear, bright, etc. consistently outperforms scopes nearly twice it`s size at star parties.

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.124.75)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39249


Vixen FL102S
I have had the Orion/Vixen 4" fluorite refractor for about 18 months. It is as nearly perfect as can be expected of a telescope of this aperature. I have never seen any false color on Venus, Jupiter or the moon. Stars are sharp pinpoints and the star test is nearly perfect. One excellent night last summer I had it up to 460x on M13; a swarm of pinpoint stars resulted. Most nights won't allow crazy magnification like that, but planets are sharp and clear on average nights at 200-250x. Star colors are much better in the Vixen than in a Chinese 4.7" refractor.
I have the telescope on a Vixen GP-DX mount with a SkySensor. The combination is portable and sturdy as a rock, with the SkySensor adding excellent GoTo abilities.
Vixen makes great products at reasonable prices. This telescope is a winner.

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.45.197)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39243


Vixen FL102S
Oustanding optics. Mechanics may not be Tak or Ap quality but the price isn't either! A BEST BUY.

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.178.11)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39242


Vixen FL102S
just a real fine telescope; sharp and contrasty; portable and
gives those higher priced apo's a run for the money on planets
and bright objects; for the money this is a best buy decision;
well constructed.

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.50.198)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39240


Vixen FL102S
Personally I find that hearing someones opinion on what telescope to get is helpful. IT IS THE POINT OF THE SITE!!!!!!

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.82.9)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39257


Vixen FL102S
Personally I find that hearing someones opinion on what telescope to get is helpful.

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.82.9)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39256


Vixen FL102S
To the above: I forgot my alias.
Greetings,
"Piet Fluoriet"

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.83.151)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=39254

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