The Lightwave 66/400 ED refractor delivers very good colour correction. The ED doublet lens system features an ED element made from premium Japanese Ohara glass. The elements have been figured with excellent smoothness and very effective super-high transmission coating (STM Coating) on all air-to-glass surfaces for exceptional contrast.
In fact, the colour rendition is so good for the price, that telescopes previously employing this same lens have been described as apochromats or "APO" by both manufacturers and their customers.*
Versatility: The Lightwave 66 ED-R is a very versatile telescope, performing very well at both visual observing and astro-photography. Detail is visible on the larger planets such as Jupiter, with both the four principle moons and main cloud belts easily visible at high power. Saturn's rings are easily visible and if the atmosphere is stable the Cassini Division in Saturn's rings can be seen with a high power eyepiece The Moon will reveal hundreds of craters, volcanic plains and mountain ranges. Adding a high quality Kendrick solar filter or Daystar Quark Hydrogen Alpha solar viewing eyepiece would give you a very small portable solar observing system you can take anywhere. In fact the Lightwave 66 ED-R with it's F6 focal ratio and 400mm focal length is within the ideal performance range for the Daystar Quark, allowing you to capture the entire disc of the sun at low power, enabling viewing of solar prominences and their development over a few hours. Higher power brings the surface of the sun into sharp detail with structure easily visible in sunspots. Being well under 80mm aperture an additional IR Blocking filter is not required. White light solar observing is also very rewarding with plenty of structure and detail visible.
The dual speed "Linear Power" Rack and Pinion Geared focuser has eight adjustable internal roller bearings, so you get more "lifting power" and stability for large eyepieces or cameras. The focuser can be rotated to frame celestial objects the way you want them. The focuser has a 2" rear accessory port with brass compression ring and a 2"-1.25" adapter with brass compression ring and dust plug. The optional Lightwave 50mm RACI (Right angle Correct Image) finder-scope or the Lightwave RDF (Red Dot Finder) both have a quick release bracket which fits on either side of the focuser unit. Once the quick release bracket is installed, you can leave it on, so adding the finder takes seconds.
Grab 'n go portability: The Lightwave 66 ED-R comes in a tough hard skinned aluminium flight-case with a foam insert, and pre-cut removable inserts for an eyepiece, a diagonal and Red Dot Finder, making it the ideal "grab 'n go" portable telescope-kit for visual observing or astro-photography. The case will easily fit in an aeroplane overhead locker, so you can travel with your telescope along as cabin-luggage. The case measures 39x25x19cm and is lockable with 2x keys included.
Mounting the Lightwave 66 ED-R on a camera tripod: Attaching the telescope to a photo or video tripod mount takes mere seconds by means of the 1/4" photo thread on the dovetail-base. A photo-tripod is perfect for grab and go visual astronomy, digi-scoping and use as a terrestrial spotting scope with superior astro-eyepieces. Astro telescopes usually have higher quality optics than spotting scopes costing many times the price, which is necessary for higher power magnification demanded by astronomers. They do however display a reversed, upside down image, which is perfectly acceptable for night-time viewing. For daytime use, simple plug in the Lightwave 45 degree erect image prism diagonal, which produces an upright, correctly orientated image. It's also compatible with astro eyepieces, so you can take advantage of these lower priced yet higher quality optics) .
Mounting the Lightwave 66 ED-R to an astro-mount: Most GOTO mounts which support "Vixen/Synta-format " dovetails such as the iOptron SkyGuider, Skytracker, Cube PRO, Minitower range, SmartEQ PRO, Sky-Watcher EQ5, and so-on will fit directly. The mounting base can be detached and re-mounted facing backwards to change the balance point for smaller loads. The mounting base is slightly wider than the 44.5mm Altair TMS Mini-Vixen-format clamp required for the Sabre mount, so a correct size dovetail bar is required to use this telescope with the Altair TMS Telescope Mounting System. Product codes: VDB-CL-180 or SW-MINI-VBAR-200 are both compatible. They are attached by means of the standard photo tripod threads in the mounting base. Longer dovetail bars can be used to gain more length for balancing with heavier accessories, such as cameras and filter wheels. Visual observers might choose longer dovetail bars for balancing with bino-viewers or heavy eyepieces. The mounting base can also be completely detached, allowing the Lightwave 66 ED-R optical tube to fit guide scope rings, such as the Altair TMS Lightweight Rings (code: GSR-100), or the Starwave 110mm guide scope rings (Code: SWGSR-110) . Both systems have many options for mounting piggyback, or side-by-side.
Lightwave 66 ED-R Specifications:
- Optical tube with air-spaced 66mm F6 Dual ED lens (400mm focal length)
- Ohara ED (SD) glass in a precision CNC machined lens cell.
- Super-high transmission coating (STM Coating) on all air to glass surfaces.
Resolving Power (Dawes' Limit) 1.75 arc seconds
Visual Limiting Magnitude 11.6 maximum
Light Grasp (human eye = 1x) 89x
Field Stops 3x glare-reducing baffles inside optical tube
- Weight approx. 2kg, OTA length with dewshield retracted, 30cm.
- Precision CNC machined components and tube made from light, tough aluminium alloy with matte powder-coat. Retractable lens shade / dew shield.
- 2" "Rack 'n Pinion" Geared Linear Power dual speed focuser with 1:10 micro-focuser and 360 degree rotation. R" Stands for "Rack 'n Pinion gear".
- 2" to 1.25" reducer with brass compression rings included.
- Special mounting base with dovetail profile to fit most telescope mounts and 1/4"-20 Photo tripod threads for use with photo or video tripods.
- Tough alu flight case included, measuring 39x25x19cm. Lockable with 2x keys included.