Astro-Physics Starfire 178 f/9

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Brand and Model:Astro-Physics Starfire 178 f/9
Price ($USD):4495
Type:Apochromatic Refractor
Attributes: un-checked Go-To un-checked PEC
f Ratio:9
Focal Length:1600
Electric Power:
Weight (lbs):33
Dimensions (w/h/d):66" x 8"
Description:Non-ED APO with 5x Better Color Correction than non-Starfire earlier Astro Physics refractors. Two special-dispersion glasses used to upgrade color-correction to a very high level. Later Six-Radii air-spaced 178 f/9 Starfires were very close in color-correction to later ED based AP APO's. The early scopes were Blue and later ones White. Astro Physics manufactured 1987-1991.

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Astro-Physics Starfire 178 f/9
I have owned one of the later Astro-Physics Starfire 178 f/9 scopes now for over 10 years. It was one of the last non-ED scopes made in 1991 and is Air-Spaced (all but the last few were oil-spaced). The scope performs as a much larger scope in most respects. On the best nights I have had the scope up over 600x on the planets/moon and had no breakdown in the images. Jupiter's moons are disks in my 7mm eyepiece and both myself and a friend of mine swear that we spotted the moon Himalia in the eyepiece on a great night of seeing with extremely steady air. As far as color correction is concerned I have not noticed any color on any object including Sirius and Venus. The late Thomas Back stated in A Brief History of Astro Physics Lenses "In the last production runs of the larger non-ED StarFires, he airspaced the design and also allowed the six different radii to vary on each surface. These last production StarFires' were almost the match of the current ED Astro-Physics scopes" IMHO this is right on the mark. Best scope I have ever owned in my 50+ years of amateur astronomy. And I have owned many refractors over the years including Takahashi's, TMB and other Astro-Physics scopes.

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Ease of Use:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
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