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Altair 72 EDF Refractor with Deluxe CNC Dual Speed R&P Focuser, Optical Test Report


Quick Overview

NEW 2018 Version with S-FPL-53 ED Lens available in Deluxe CNC Configuration.

- A design refresh!
- Improved optics with FPL53 ED Glass
- Optical test report (Deluxe version).
- Improved geared CNC focuser with rear and front rotator (Deluxe version).
- Stand-offs for better balancing with long dovetails / cameras (Deluxe version)
- CNC Tube Rings
Only 1 left

Availability: In stock



A great travel scope, suitable for wide field imaging or visual use, day or night-time.

The Altair 72EDF is a more refined version of the Lightwave 72 ED-R. It has improved optics in the form of an S-FPL53 based doublet objective lens providing superior colour correction, and a lighter more compact tube, CNC Rack n Pinion focuser with a rear camera rotator and triple thumbscrews to hold your camera or diagonal firmly in place.

Better than FPL51. When it comes to astro imaging, the FPL53 optical design has all the performance you need in a dual imaging and visual telescope, offering better colour correction than an FPL51 based doublet telescope with the same focal length and aperture thanks to the "synthetic fluorite" S-FPL53 ED lens element.

Optical quality and test reports. Both Standard and Deluxe lenses are guaranteed to arrive in perfect collimation. The Deluxe CNC version comes with an optical test report at full 72mm aperture. The Deluxe lenses are selected from the production batch for their optical smoothness, figuring, and overall performance. Quality is very consistent, and every lens has a unique serial number linked to the glass batch and test report. Altair Astro pioneered this approach to QC ensuring our customers always get the best quality.

Oversized lens. Like any refractor, the lens actually has a larger diameter than 72mm for mounting purposes, however, to ensure outer edge performance and better collimation holding, we have chosen to implement it at design aperture which is 72mm. This ensures the performance of the optics is optimum at a focal ratio of F6.0 and star-images are better than multi-element camera lenses costing many times the price, which usually need to be stopped down give better star-images. Of course, being a telescope, and lacking a diaphragm/iris with irregular edges, also improves the image quality compared to a camera lens.

Rear Camera Angle Adjuster (CAA). The Altair 72EDF focuser has a rotating rear collar with locking screws, allowing you to frame the object perfectly, without rotating the whole focuser, or the optical tube. This is a distinct advantage, especially when mounting the telescope with other scopes, and motor focusers, to avoid the extra equipment fouling the mounting bars.

Imaging friendly CNC focuser (Deluxe CNC version). The micro CNC machined Rack 'n Pinion focuser has full tension-adjustment to handle heavy loads, like a large eyepiece, CCD or DSLR camera. The drawtube has 75mm travel and a graduated scale in mm. This is a straightforward focuser for imaging. There are no gimmicks - just remove the course focus knob, and attach a Pegasus motor focuser coupler, mount the Pegasus motor unit on a dovetail bar under the focuser*, and you are ready to go. (We recommend choosing the Deluxe version for easier mounting due to the Camera Angle Adjuster and dovetail stand-offs). Of course, the CNC focuser is the smoothest option for visual use too, with the higher tolerances computer-controlled lathes allow.

Standard cast focuser for visual use (Standard Visual version). The standard visual version has a white powder-coated cast aluminium focuser, which is more cost-effective, and is perfectly adequate for visual observation. It does not rotate like the Deluxe CNC focuser, however, you can rotate your diagonal prism in the focuser to achieve a comfortable viewing position.

Dovetail “Stand-offs” (Deluxe CNC version). Solid aluminium “Stand-offs” between the dovetail bar and mounting rings allow the vixen dovetail bar to be moved further back behind the focuser, for better balance with cameras, filter wheels and digital motor focusers. This helps Astro-photographers achieve better balance on equatorial mounts.

Astrophotography and flatteners / reducers. The ED Doublet design offers very good colour correction, while keeping the optical tube extremely compact. The new S-FPL53 ED Doublet lens gives better colour correction in the blue regions of the spectrum than the earlier 72mm version with FPL51 optics. At F6, this telescope can be used with the optional 1.0x field flattener (code: LW-1.0xFLAT) or 0.8x reducer (code: LW-0.8xRED) for wide field imaging, with a 41mm image circle. Optimum spacing is 56mm from the rear flange of the flattener to the image sensor (excluding threads), and spot size is particularly well matched to the Altair Hypercam 183C and 183M CMOS Astronomy Imaging cameras.

Hinged mounting ring and tube. The tube rings allows the whole tube to rotate, and can be locked with the stainless-steel thumbscrews. Loosen the thumbscrews, and the telescope can be dismounted from the hinged rings for use with Altair Guide Scope Rings. The "mounting foot" terminates in a small dovetail plate with a flat base. The base has a standard 3-in-line hole pattern allowing attachment to most mounting systems on the market or to a camera tripod using M6 or 1/4" Photo Tripod Screws. The optional Starwave 200mm Vixen-style dovetail bar is recommended (SW-MINI-VBAR-200) for imaging with an equatorial mount - choose in the dropdown menu when ordering.

Dew control. The aluminium tube achieves thermal equilibrium very quickly, and the metal construction conducts heat easily to and from the front optics (essential for imaging and dew control). Choose the Pegasus Dew Zap Dew Controller (PEG-DEWZAP) or the Pegasus DSLR Buddy (PEG-DB-DR-E5) if you have a DSLR. For a heater, choose the DewZapper 3-4" OD Dew Heater (DEWH-34).

Attaching a finder scope. A finder scope or RDF (Red Dot Finder) is a very good addition, making finding objects quick and easy. Choose the Starwave RDF Finder Kit (Code: SW-RDF-B1-UNIFBR) which includes a base for easy attachment to the focuser. If you want an optical finder, we recommend the Altair 60mm RACI or Starwave 50mm Straight-through finder scopes, which can both be used for an auto-guiding with the Altair GPCAM for long exposure imaging. Altair 50mm or 60mm finder scope or compact Red Dot Finders (RDF) can all be attached to the focuser by means of two screws and the included universal bases (UNIFBR).

Visual Observation: For visual use, you will need a mount, eyepieces and a star-diagonal to use this high quality telescope. We suggest the Starwave Mini-AZ mount (SW-MINIAZ) in matching red. The Altair Astro range of eyepieces and diagonals are all good quality options. Talk to us or your dealer for advice about eyepiece and diagonals.

Lightwave 72 EDF Specifications:

Optical tube with air-spaced 72mm F6 Dual ED lens (432mm focal length)
Ohara FPL53 ED glass in a precision CNC machined lens cell.
Super-high transmission coating (STM Coating) on all air to glass surfaces.
Resolving Power (Dawes’ Limit) 1.61 arc seconds
Visual Limiting Magnitude 11.8 maximum
Field Stops inside focuser (Deluxe CNC version) with glare-reducing baffles inside optical tube (both Standard and Deluxe versions).
Weight approx. 2.5kg, OTA length with dewshield retracted, 32.5cm.
Precision CNC machined tube made from light, tough aluminium alloy with matte powder coat.
Retractable lens shade / dew shield.
2.5" Geared dual speed focuser with 1:10 micro-focuser and 360 degree rotation.
2" to 1.25" reducer with brass compression rings included.
Dovetail bar fits most telescope mounts with 1/4"-20 Photo tripod threads for use with photo or video tripods.
Suggested accessories:

iOptron SkyTracker PRO with counterweight kit, or iOptron SkyGuider Mount, iOptron SmartEQ PRO GOTO (for ultra portable imaging).
iOptron Cube PRO Mount (for visual night-time, and solar observing).
iOptron CEM25P GOTO Mount for imaging.
3/4" Dew Heater.
1.25" Dielectric Diagonal for night-time observation. For daytime use, get the 1.25" Image Erecting Prism.
RDF finder / 60mm / 50mm optical finder scope.
0.8x Reducer or 1.0x Field Flattener (for imaging).
M48 DSLR adapter for Canon or Nikon.
Altair Astro Hypercam CMOS Astronomy Camera (ideally Hypercam 183C or 183M series).
Pegasus USB Stepper Motor Focuser module to fit focuser.

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