Orion AstroView 120ST EQ


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Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I have this scope for a month now.Incredible star test are perfect,out performs my hd102 hands down.

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.103.36)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41216


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
ex. buy for a rich field scope. color was not bad for a f5.had better color corection and went to higher powers than my old 5"f5 yeagers. had it up to 225 power on double stars and no break up,ran out of barlows.EQ3 mount a little shakey but installed wood legs made it much more stable.very good light weight scope for the money.EQ3 motor drive worked very good. rating 8 cotascope@webtv.net

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.221.138)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41217

>ex. buy for a rich field scope. color was not bad for a f5.had better color corection and went to higher powers than my old 5"f5 yeagers. had it up to 225 power on double stars and no break up,ran out of barlows.EQ3 mount a little shakey but installed wood legs made it much more stable.very good light weight scope for the money.EQ3 motor drive worked very good.  rating 8   cotascope@webtv.net   


225x-your crazy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
too much color. scorched in performance by c-102`s at star parties i`ve been to.

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.124.75)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41218


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I am a rank amateur astronomer, and this is my first "real" scope. I am amazed at the clarity of the optics. Based on all the reviews that I have read, and there were many, I felt that this was the best choice. And it still is. No, I have not looked through a Tak, AP, etc., but this this looks pretty darn good to me. I know that I have much to learn (and find in the sky; no wonder go-to's are so popular), but this is a primo scope.
As predicted, the mount is short and wobbly. I bought two sets of rubber chair "coasters" and a tube of silicone adhesive, and made my own shock absorbers. It helps a lot. I should get my GP mount today; I found it on Orions clearance center at over 1/3 off. I'm looking forward to many nights of fun.
jhauser203@aol.com

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.43.176)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41219


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I have had this scope for about 2 months. I got it as a grab and go when the C11 just seemed like too much work. I like it. Having never had the pleasure of looking through a wallet buster like Tak or AP my observations can be taken with that grain of salt. First, the mount is prone to vibrations but I have found no need to upgrade. If that is important I would put it on my G11 (for the money it is good.) The scope is just plain fun. I got a 2inch TV diagonal and with the 35mm Pan the view of 4+degrees takes in the Lagoon and trifid nebulae and frames them nicely in a large field. The north america was easy to pick out. The double double split at 111X (my current max). Color?? Yes, on the moon and planets, but to those who cannot afford perfection, it is not distracting. Star testing was good though the conditions were not optimum. For the most part stars are pinpoint. As a grab and go scope this is hard to beat with alot of aperture for the buck. A good deal.

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.201.194)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41220


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
This is my first real scope and I'm just now realizing how little I knew when I placed the order from Orion's "Seconds" web page. The unit arrived with a broken set screw for the polar alignment scope. It took Orion 4 working days before they even shipped the replacement but all is now OK.

One of my biggest disappointments in recent memory was the first clear night when I could finally I lug this thing outside, pointed it a a fairly gigantic Mars, looked through the 25mm ep and saw a slightly bigger dot of light than what I could see with the naked eye. The images in the catalog certainly appear more stunning than what you actually see in the viewfinder, don't they? My heart sank and all I could think about was that I just wasted $400+ and that there were no returns on "seconds".(OK, I'm a tightwad.)

Well I'm here to tell ya brother, there ain't no quit in these old bones. I made it a point not to give up after my initial disapointment and decided to view some "deep space delectables" as Orion said this scope was designed for. I may not have found any "delectables" yet but it sure is gettng to be fun searching. I agree with all of the positive comments about the optics, bright images and generally pinpoint focus on stars. Yes, some false color on bright objects, but overall pretty darned impressive. I share some of the concerns over the mount assembly so I'll be dismantling it to clean all of the shellac out of the gears and stuffing some silicone grease in there.

The Pacific Northwest skies have been clear and I have been out for at least 4-5 nights a week for the past month. Although a 8" Dob probably would have been a better first choice for me, I'm now very enthusiastic about this scope. Next on the list is an Orion Shorty-Plus Barlow lens and a good star chart!

Overall Rating: 8
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.57.20)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41221


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
This is my second scope and I intended it to compliment my Celestron 9.25 SCT. I purchased the OTA and was pleased with Orion in all aspects of the purchase. As I have a 9.25 f10 scope already I really wanted something to toss up quickly and have some nice wide fields to look at. With a 600mm f.l. 2, 3, and 4 degree FOV's are a snap and good fun. Infact you really don't need a finder. I placed the OTA on the mount that came with my SCT after upgrading. The CG5 mount is a good fit for this scope and I am happy with it now. As for the tube the mechanics are fine and things seems to be assembled well. The focuser has a good amount of travel, vert little shift, though is a little grainy feeling. Not enough to really bother me or affect viewing at all. This scope does have color when looking at a bright object like Vega or the Moon. With a 6mm Radian the purple haze around Vega is sort of pretty. I have yet to get a nice view at this mag (100X) so I would call the upper limit for my usage maybe 50X to 75X. I would like to see a little more contrast in the view as well. The tube has a single baffle and I think that some more are in order so I plan to put in some foam discs and see how that works.
In a nutshell I like this scope but I knew exactly what I wanted from it. If you are into planets of getting anal about fine detail on the moon or globulars you will be pissed. If you want a simple scope for some really wide field viewing you will be happy. Were this my first scope or my only scope I would rank it lower and kick myself for getting what is something of a specialized scope. Cheers

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 3 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.195.170)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41222

if you are saying that the upper limit for your usage is 50x to 75x you should be giving this scope a 4 out of 10!  this is a 5 inch scope!
yeah, a widefield, short tube but you should be using 150 - 200x without much problem.

maybe there is something up with yours?




>This is my second scope and I intended it to compliment my Celestron 9.25 SCT.  I purchased the OTA and was pleased with Orion in all aspects of the purchase.  As I have a 9.25 f10 scope already I really wanted something to toss up quickly and have some nice wide fields to look at.  With a 600mm f.l. 2, 3, and 4 degree FOV's are a snap and good fun.  Infact you really don't need a finder.  I placed the OTA on the mount that came with my SCT after upgrading.  The CG5 mount is a good fit for this scope and I am happy with it now.  As for the tube the mechanics are fine and things seems to be assembled well.  The focuser has a good amount of travel, vert little shift, though is a little grainy feeling.  Not enough to really bother me or affect viewing at all.  This scope does have color when looking at a bright object like Vega or the Moon.  With a 6mm Radian the purple haze around Vega is sort of pretty.  I have yet to get a nice view at this mag (100X) so I would call the upper limit for my usage maybe 50X to 75X.  I would like to see a little more contrast in the view as well.  The tube has a single baffle and I think that some more are in order so I plan to put in some foam discs and see how that works.
>       In a nutshell I like this scope but I knew exactly what I wanted from it.  If you are into planets of getting anal about fine detail on the moon or globulars you will be pissed.  If you want a simple scope for some really wide field viewing you will be happy.  Were this my first scope or my only scope I would rank it lower and kick myself for getting what is something of a specialized scope.  Cheers

Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I purchased the 120 ST to use in cooler weather because of the protracted equilibration time for my 6" Mak. I had several mounts so I opted for the OTA only. This scope has gotten some "bad press", notably the one on Cloudy Nights where it was belittled because it did not perform as well as high-end scopes selling for much more. I think that review is an odd one and one of the poorer reviews of astro equipment that I have come across. In any event, even though the scope is not designed for, and does not claim to give, quality images of the planets or moon,I have gotten surprisingly good images of Saturn, Jupiter, and the Moon with it using a high-quality diagonal and premium eyepieces. One night recently the seeing was very good, and using a 4mm Radian for 150X, the 120 ST showed me Cassini's Division very clearly. The subtle bands on the planet itself were obvious, and the crescent spaces between the rings and the planet were jet black and very sharp. The scope probably could have handled 200X well on that evening. No, the images were not the equal of the MK67 nor I imagine, that of a Tak or AP apo, but for $329 I was very happy with them. On deep sky, the 120 does very well too. Using a 17mm Type 4 Nagler for 35X, the views of "starry swaths" were incredible in a true field of 2.3 degrees. M57 was easily seen as a tiny ring shape at 35X. The 35mm Panoptic provides a 3.6 TFOV at 17X!
I often find myself reaching for the 120ST instead of the Mak, even when cool down is not an issue! This scope is highly recommended, especially for deep sky, but also for lunar and planetary viewing when sky conditions are optimal.

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 6 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.14.11)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41223


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
Comment only update. I'm the guy who voted on 9/15/2001 BTW. I have to say this scope is getting better and better. I have taken it to several star parties and numerous backyard sessions and I'm feelin kinda smug. On good nights I have had real good views of Jupiter and Saturn with a 6mm radian (100X) I have gotten some color but not enought to bug me. On a wooden raised porch at 50X I could see Jupiter, the GRS, ans 4 moons. THe cassini division in the rings of Saturn is a snap as well. THe entire double cluster, well framed with a 26mm Plossl and the Lagoon and trifid nebulas as well. I read a few weeks ago that the tube (I just got the OTA) comes with 2 EP's. I called Orion and told them I only got one with the scope. No sweat! Three days later a 10mm plossl shows up in the mail. I have removed the finder from this tube, don't really need it. I have also found that the tube requires no cooldown as long as you are not going nuts. I frequently pop out for 30 minutes of planets and M42 before work and with the 26mm or larger there is no cooldown. I still feel that the contrast could be better. I put in 2 foam discs and that helped some but it is still a bit bright. All in all I am really happy and I find I use this more that my 9.25 celestron SCT. Worth the money

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.15.24)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41224


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I first read the ratings in this site about this scope, they were good. I was happy as I selected this scope as an alternative to our Nexstar 8 by Celestron. Basically I gave my son the Nexstar for his birthday, christmas and graduation present all in one. I was jealous and hurt that I gave my son the scope that I had picked out for myself. But I felt bad when his scope did not work, and it would take weeks to fix from celestron. It was a Nexstar 4. I sold it and gave him mine. Well I needed areplacement scope, however no way nears the $1600 I paid for the 8, I then ran into this scope the 120 ST in the new mailing from Orion. It soundd like a scope that I could use. It had it all, except that I was worried about the quality. Well I just received it today after an excellent night last night of viewing, and tonight dang near as good. Last night with teh Nexstar 8. Awesome views, awesome night. Well tonight I thought what the hell let's take it out, it was just sitting there put togther and the weather forecast was not looking to good. Took it out, hooked I up with Jupiter and WOW!! My son said WOW! I mean we had this thing on a wooden deck just outside my patio doors, cold that's why, but the Stabilty was awesome!, less than a second. the Cloud rings blew the Nexstar to shame and this scope is a 4.7" and the next star and 8" CLEAR SHAR STARS, CLEAR Planets, a little color, but surprising not bad. Quality was awesome. It looks like I paid more than $519.00 Shipped. Easy to handle cause it's short. But I cn't wait to use it for what it was made for, Deep Space. I can only say that I'll be more impressed. And I have owned alot of scopes. Now my son feels bad, the nexstar does'nt compare in image quality. I could spend more, but why?

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 4 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.79.206)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41225


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I'll probably just echo what has already been said, but what the hell. I got the 120ST to compliment my XT10 when I don't feel like lugging the dob out. I was surprised at how well this fast scope does on planets. I was able to reduce the color (which wasn't bad at all) with a number 82 pale blue Orion filter. The scope star tested well, and is well made. I honestly expected much less from this scope when I ordered it, but instead I am really impressed. The tripod pretty much sucks, not because of vibration, but it's too short and will be replaced with a wooden one soon. The mount is sturdy though. The finderscope is so-so. I put a reflex sight on, and with the scope's wide field, that's all that is needed. Combined with this scope being on sale now for $489, and the free single axis drive that comes with it, it's a bargain. Another satisfied customer.

Overall Rating: 10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.194.27)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41226


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I think the review of 12-10-01 from must be from an Orion insider. The 120ST
that I received was so poor optically that I thought that Synta-Tech must had
put the objective in backwards. Even at 20X I could not get a snap focus. 60x
was even worse. I thought this scope would be an upgrade over my Celestron 102
wideview but I had to send it back. Too bad because this scope looked very impressive as far as construction quality, fit and finish.

Overall Rating: 5
Weight: 3 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.224.79)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41227


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
As per other posts,remove tripod, and replace with wooden legs, and mount is then quite adequate.I needed a 'grab and go' scope, and this does quite well;deep sky objects very good...not your scope for planets,yet gives fairly good images up to @ 150x.I am still shopping for a high end scope for CCD work, and will post when I decide.This scope is a good value for the money spent.

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:9 Mount:9 Ease of Use:8 Value:9
Weight: 10 (Trustworthy Vote)
Date:
By: Bigredjet
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=72570


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
Purchased the OTA only to go with my other scopes and Miyauchi 20x100. I mounted it on a Bogen 3236 with heavy duty pan head. I figured at $318.00 how could you go wrong. All the so called 'experts' have really cut this scope down, but I have had it out a few times and I can find nothing wrong with this scope. The stars are very sharp. Star clusters are stunning. I put a O-III filter on it and had a very nice view of the veil nebula. I did use it with a Televue Everbrite diagonal which I,m sure helped. But overall it performed great.

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:9 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.200.49)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=100420


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
This is a very good "shorty" for the money. Excellent wide field views, and the moon and planets look pretty dawggoned good too. I would buy it again.

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:9 Mount:8 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.12.228)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=109163


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
If you buy an 8in. dob. for the same price you will see more things. This is a OK low power scope for a quik setup. Good for brighter star clusters, a few nebulas and thats it. Overall, low quality optics.

Overall Rating: 5
Optics:4 Mount:5 Ease of Use:7 Value:6
Weight: 2 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Staruser
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=110559

>If you buy an 8in. dob. for the same price you will see more things.  This is a OK low power scope for a quik setup.  Good for brighter star clusters, a few nebulas and thats it.  Overall,  low quality optics.

Perhaps, but let's compare apples with apples here.  An 8 inch dob doesn't make a good grab and go, wide field scope.  Nor does one expect APO-like performance from a $319 scope.
So, overall your opinion is rather out of context.
I'm not sure why people leave goofy comments like this.  If I wanted an 8" DOB for the same price I'd buy one.  But that's not why I came to this site.  I came here to read reviews and evaluations of the Orion 4.7" short tube refractor.  For that purpose this person's review is worthless.  No examples cited to substantiate the opinions given.  

Overall, this guy's a loser. 

>If you buy an 8in. dob. for the same price you will see more things.  This is a OK low power scope for a quik setup.  Good for brighter star clusters, a few nebulas and thats it.  Overall,  low quality optics.

Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I purchased the 120ST OTA for about $320 from Orion to be used as a RFT on my CG5 mount and HD Surveyor tripod that I also use for my CR150. I also use it as a low light spotting scope on a Bogen 3040 tripod with a 24mm UWA 2" eyepiece from TALscopes. For the maximum FOV I use a Rodenstock BW/Optik 40mm UWA eyepiece for a 4.67 deg FOV. It is a great finder scope for my XT10 .

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 10 (Trustworthy Vote)
Date:
By: jao
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=111684


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
Very good for low power views . At 50x and below it totally outperforms my Stellarvue. But when you get the power up to around 100x, the image begans to degrade. This is a good low power wide field scope only, that is well worth the optical tube price.

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:8 Ease of Use:10 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.208.42)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=134990


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
It’s been some time since I’ve look though a telescope, about twenty years (I used to do a lot of looking). So I can’t really compare this telescope with other’s very fair. I bought it from the Orion warehouse in Watsonville CA, for $399, it came with an equatorial mount.

So far I’m very pleased with it. I’ve looked through the 36-inch and the 12-inch Clark refractors at Lick year’s back, and could recall the color around Jupiter. I don’t see much color around the planets with the120 ST. I can see Cassini’s division in Saturn’s rings. For what I pay for it (it’s on sale, $100 off) I think it’s a fine scope!

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:8 Mount:8 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.135.227)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=160626


Orion AstroView 120ST EQ
I bought the 120 ST as the OTA only. For $319 and shipping I figured I couldn't go too wrong. I did not have high expectations for the scope. I knew there would be secondary color, probably lots of it at higher magnifications. I knew I was taking a chance on optical quality too since the Synta scopes seem to be a 50/50 crap shoot as to getting one of good optical quality. But I was willing to take that risk thanks to Orion's excellent return policy.

Let me preface this by saying this is not my first scope, nor my only scope. I also own a Takahashi FS102, as well as a 3" Zeiss f/15 and several other scopes. I figure I can recognize decent optical quality when I see it. When the 120ST arrived I was pleased with its fabrication quality. Black tube paint was very high gloss, with a nice depth to it. The dark gray toned hammer finish paint of the focuser and objective cell were very nicely done and well set off by the deep glossy black tube.

The objective appears to be multi-coated but perhaps not on every air/glass surface since I can see a combination of green surface and purple depth reflections.

The 2" focuser is a nice addition and racks fairly smoothly, though there is a bit of stickiness (but I already know the cure for that). Image shift is very very slight when racking back and forth. Overall it's a right decent focuser considering the overall cost of the scope. And if one is willing, the focuser can be made even better without much effort.

For whatever reason Synta/Orion are not supplying the 120 ST with the objective cell that is adjustable for collimation, which is extremely odd since the other 102, 120, and 150 Synta models (both short and long focus) are now supplied with that upgrade. I say odd because the short tube scopes need to be spot on in collimation even more so than their longer focal length counterparts. And that is where the 120 ST I received fell down. In the initial star test I could see quite nearly identical out of focus rings on either side of focus, much better than I had expected to be honest with you. In fact the start test was quite impressive, with the one exception, collimation was off slightly. I unscrewed the objective cell from the tube one full turn then started turning it back down towards tight about 1/16 of a turn at a time then I would then redo the star test. I reached a spot that was about 1/4 turn off of being tightened to the tube again where the collimation came together. I repeated the star test and was truly impressed with what I was seeing. I was able to split the double double at 80x (7.5mm Takahashi LE).

I had no intention of using the original 25mm or 10mm supplied Sirius Plossl eyepieces or the 1 1/4" mirror diagonal so sold them shortly after testing the scope, though I did try each out and found them to be more than serviceable.

Secondary color? The subject very often discussed when this scope is brought up in conversation. Yes it is there, and yes there is a fair amount of it at higher magnifications (above 120x). But on my scope it just wasn't all that objectionable in the 20x to 120x ranges, even on the brighter objects. Above 150 and the color starts to intrude and planetary detail begins to lose some sharpness, but not terribly so to about 175x. In my area of the country good seeing is fairly elusive and it is not often I can use any scope above 200x so large aperture for planetary use isn't as great an issue with me as it might be for others. Because of that I tend to get the most use out of my 3 and 4 inch refractors. With that in mind I tried the scope with the objective dust cap in place and the central cap removed, giving me the equivalent of about a 52mm f/11.5 refractor.

Stopped down to 52mm I ran the star test again and what a surprise! The intra and extra focal images were close enough to one another that I couldn't tell a difference under the seeing conditions. But a 52mm scope wasn't my plan so I opened the stop to 75mm giving me a roughly 3" f/8 scope. At 75mm and f/8 Saturn views sharpened up significantly at all powers and at 150x (Takahashi 4mm Hi-Ortho eyepiece) the view was quite stunning. I dropped in the Takahashi 2.8mm Hi-Ortho eyepiece (214x) but the seeing would barely support it, though very impressive views did fade in and out as I waited out some good and poor conditions.

All in all I am quite impressed with the scope. Yes, I probably got somewhat lucky and got a decent one, but had I not it would have been returned for exchange time and again until I did get a good one. I like having this easy to setup and use scope of 120mm aperture (I use it on an al/az mount) for deeper sky observing or can instantly stop it down to 75mm for some stunning planetary views. No it's probably not the ideal scope for either but it is a very convenient to use “grab and go scope” and does a pretty darn good job for both at a very reasonable price. To those that suggest getting the 102mm version because they think it is sharper I say nonsense. The 120 can be stopped down easy enough to 4 inches, 3 inches, or even 2 inches to sharpen the views on planets, or be let to run wide open at 120 for greater deep sky light gathering. With the larger 120 aperture you have that versatility at very little price difference compared to the 102mm version.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:7 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 5 (Veritable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.173.41)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=161308

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