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top-notch 4" can't come close to the performance of a good 8"...

I hope we can discuss these opinions. And God forbid, I don't want to start an argument...just bring out clear thought on opinion.

I know the common knowledge that aperture rules.
I also know about the many experienced astronomers who would much rather use a high quality 4 inch refractor than an OK 8 inch reflector, or one of those schmidt cassegrain doohickey whatever neat telescopes. I hope I didn't offend anyone... those things are really neat toys...

I have almost no experience actually looking through scopes. I try to judge opinions like that of Ed Ting....others also. I realize these people love the beautiful clear images they get with their refractors. Even though the image is much dimmer. They are able to identify something with the clarity and detail given by their telescopes. They find it more enjoyable to view through. Keeping that in mind....I do know there comes a point where their refractors just can't compete... period...with large aperture. Keeping that in mind....there is a ton to look at and study with pleasure within the confines of their 4 inch high quality refractor.

Now with the under $1K 8 inch reflectors. You have the light gathering. But, isn't there a sadly lacking clarity and detail to the image? Isn't it harder to actually identify and see detail in images? I find this thought to be very discouraging. Yes...the astronomer can much more easily find things...but they're usually....well..lacking definition. Isn't this the case?

I'd like your thoughts on this? I don't want to argue specific telescopes. Like you said, you saw the impressive info at DGM. No need to discuss that. I think perhaps all I'm wanting to discuss is the preference for refractor, with it's lacks, versus reflector and it's drawbacks. I know there is much variety versus price etc.

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