Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ

 Info  Votes  Messages  More Stats  Up One Level
Brand and Model:Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
Price ($USD):$299.00
Attributes: un-checked Go-To un-checked PEC
Aperture:130MM (5.1")
f Ratio:f/5
Focal Length:650mm
Electric Power:
Weight (lbs):27 lbs.
Dimensions (w/h/d):

Vote Highlights Vote
Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
First of all, this is a very very good value scope and even though it is not my use profile, I would recommend it to a beginner.

The optics is very nice given the size, the optical components (especially vane and mirror) exceed the expectations in this price range by far.

Planetary views are good (cloudbands and cassini on Saturn, Moon is beautiful up to 180x, 4 cloudbands on Jupiter in mediocer seeing), the most prominent DSOs are clearly in range and quite nice. Relative to the aperture and the principle, it is great.

The mount is adequate, not exactly oversized, but ok. Since I bought it as a travelscope (in the sense, that it fits into my car even if the car is loaded with luggage, which is not true for my 8" Dob), I would not opt for a bigger or heavier mount.

Since the overall transport-relevant size is dominated by the mount already, I dont know whether a smaller scope like a StarMax or so is actually easier to transport ...

However, the focuser is crap and since it is far from smooth, vibrations can become a problem especially since the mount is just adequate, but not oversized. However, I like the optical performance of this little thing so much that I even consider the additional $60 for a JMI focuser (kit-price for a miniRCF) ....

The finderscope is the usual Orion 6x20 and measured against the price quite usable. However, for a short-focus wide-field scope, I would recommend a good 1x viewer (Rigel/Telrad).

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:8 Mount:6 Ease of Use:6 Value:10
Weight: 10 (Trustworthy Vote)
By: CaliforniaMamba
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=71046

Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
After reading the reviews here and some others I decided that a 5 inch Parabolic with EQ mount would be a good choice for my first scope. The short tube makes handling easier that the long tube models, but you do loose some focal length. The long tube version is Fl=900mm and this one is Fl=650. but it is a fast f5 so solar photography should be pretty good.
After looking at used scope listing for a month I found this one with single axis motor drive for a fraction of the original price. Best buy I ever made since I bought a wedding ring.

I have been using the scope for a couple of months now and couldn't be happier with the scope and mount. The eyepiece that I got with the used scope were not very good, dirty and very short eye relief so I have purchased a couple of new ones. A meade wide angle 12mm Plossl, a 21.5 mm ED with 20 mm eye relief and 55 deg FOV = Fantastic images and makes finding DSO's easy. My latest eyepiece is a 7.5 mm ED, same as the 21.5, and now bands on Jupiter are clear and sharp, the moon craters look like the pictures I see in books. I added a 3X Meade shorty Barlow to let me get close to the max magnification the 650 mm can attain. Still sharp clear images with the 7.5 and 3X. I love it.

The tripod and EQ2 mount could be more stable and smoother operation, but for the price I can't complain to much. I have had to align the mirror a couple of times (using a laser collimator made it very easy).

The eyepiece focuser is slow and stiff and will be something I consider replacing in the near future.

Over all, I have about $500 invested in scope, software, and books. I can see nebula's, clusters, galaxies, and planets clearly so I think I have found the best possible system for the money I have spent.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Mount:8 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.93.36)
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=590991

Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
Great Little scope , mirrors test nice , i am very satisfied
with the views, excellent detail on saturn. Decent aperature
for dso's too. Great Price !!

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Mount:8 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.116.202)
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=388099

Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
I got this scope a few weeks ago from the orion website and i must say , this is one hell of a scope for the money.
i paid 269.00 for it . The optics are superb the plossls supplied
are pretty good but a chain is only as good as its weakest link
so i generally use my celestron ultima's in it. I have viewed
jupiter and mars at 200x + and the views are remarkable.
Had to get up at 4 am to see mars though but it was worth it.
I think the focuser could use a little less plastic but you can tighten or loosen the screws to adjust the tension. This scope has a plate on the back that has to come off to adjust
the main mirror , ive heard some people complain about it. But this may add a few years to your coatings by sealing off the tube better when not on use and i have no problem with it.
I use a cheshire to collimate it , i dont believe in lasers i think they are a waste of money. Just cheshire then star test whats the big deal? the mount could use some anti vibration pads but overall not to terrible. For the cost and quality this might be the best begginers eq on the market !

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:10 Mount:8 Ease of Use:9 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.253.1)
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=235176

Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
Received it during the holiday season after ordering on the Wed in just 3 days. Assembly was straight forward (but manual is pretty sparse). Optics are great - crisp views of Saturn, Jupiter, Orion Nebula, and Andromeda in city lights. Mount is light so there's a bit of vibration, but it settles down quickly. It came with Plossl (25 mm, 10 mm) eyepieces. For planetary viewing with the short focal length, it would be helpful to have a Barlow lenses or maybe a higher power eyepiece. Overall a very respectable package for a reasonable price. Customer service (phoned to confirm that the mirror was parabolic) was outstanding with a very knowlegeable fellow.

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:9 Mount:6 Ease of Use:7 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.180.194)
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=174101

Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
[webmaster note: vote moved from description]

Opened scope and used tonight. Mount was smooth and easy to use. Finder and 2 supplied Orion Plossls (25,10mm) good quality. Nice fit and finish. Great wide and bright views. Excellent optical system- tiny amount of defraction. M31 M15 M39 all looked great- M31 very imprssive for this size of scope. Moon at 87X very nice. Stunning optics and very compact.

Easily portable. I would reccommend this scope to an intermediate observer- I cannot wait to view Jupiter and Saturn.

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.105.52)
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=71051

Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
Once again, a good scope of quality from Orion. The mount and tripod are of first quality- and very stable. The optics are excellent- but its not a small scope that is easily picked up, nor a huge monster- it fits in the middle- so thats a real plus for thos who seek performance and reasonable portability.
The 5.1" Parabolic mirror, teamed with an ultra thin spider give nearly defraction free viewing. M31 looked great at 25X in a plossl 25mm eyepiece.
The moon took 200X- Saturn and Jupiter should look great as well.

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.58.182)
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41378

Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
I have owned this scope for about 2 months. This is my second telescope. My first scope was a 60 mm Bushnell. My uncle who literally is a rocket scientist bought it in in the USA back in 1983.

This is supposed to be a small scope, but I would like beginners to know that it is quite a handful compared to let's say a 60 mm refractor. My wife almost got a heart attack when she first saw it, so I'm glad I didn't start out with a bigger scope. It fits into a large ruck-sack though.

Mechanical quality

The overall mechanical quality is good. The collimination is a bit inconvinient, because you have to remove a steel plate to access the collimination screws. Also, you need both a screwdriver and an allen wrench to adjust the primary.
For visual obervation, the mount and tripod is great. Tracking is easy. Vibration is not a problem, and I would NOT like to have a heavier mount.

I am very happy with the optical performance. On saturn, I am able to see the Cassini Division as well as cloud bands on the planet. The moon is sharp even at 195x magnification. I am able to split the double-double in Lyrae, and the ring nebulae M57 really looks like a ring in the corner of the eye. I guess none of this will impress the telescope nuts out there, but after all it's just a $299 scope.

I soon learned that the scope is very sensitive to temperature changes, so don't expect to see much before the scope has cooled down.

Conclusion: This is a very good, cheap all-round scope. Absoloute beginners should know that it is not *really* grab-and-go.

(I'm not English speeking, so bear with my grammar)

Erlend Langsrud

Overall Rating: 8
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.160.98)
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41377

Orion F5 5.1" Parabolic EQ
Mine shows to be about 1/8w undercorrected on star test, which I'd say it real good for a $300 system. I dropped it on the dining room floor when first setting it up (the EQ 2 mount has only notches for the upper leg attach, thus if
you don't have the wingnuts pretty tight, a leg will fall off - - - I fixed this by installing a pinch-bolt setup, so's now you can take the wingnuts off and still can't get the bolts out), and then had a heck of a time recollimating.
It's an f5 - - - I finally got me a holo-laser colimator & got it right on - - -and since then everthing is beautiful. I have had it out numerous times now, and
the collimation is holding right on.
It has surprised me how good the moonviews are with it using the 10mm plossl and a 2.8 Barlow. I haven't had clear enough skies for much starfield viewing yet - - - I got a nice look at M30, but that's all.
I'm very happy with the 130ST - - - .

Overall Rating: No Vote
Weight: <none>
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.8.34)
Link to this vote: http://excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=41379

Click here to see all votes (9 total)
[Click Here to Login]
Don't have a login? Register!