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New APM APO 85/95mm. (1 Viewer)

Canip

Well-known member
I am waiting for my APM 95 to be delivered, can report back once I got them, if anyone is interested.

Canip
 

henry link

Well-known member
I wondered just from its looks whether the zoom eyepiece might be another Chinese clone of the Swarovski 20-60x zoom.

Hopefully Canip can clarify some inconsistent specs and descriptions I noticed on the APM website. The focusing system is described as a focusing Porro prism in one place and as a focusing lens in another. The erecting prism is given as Porro in one place and roof in another. Of course it would also be nice to know the ED glass type used in the scope.

Henry
 

jring

Well-known member
Hi,

I am really looking forward to Canip's review too!

Regarding the ED glass type - since APM is an astro shop, I would expect them to mention if it was FPL-53, as they do with all their other gear. So it's probably some chinese glass - FCD100 would be nice but is also not too probable, FCD-1 or any out of the FPL-51 cluster is most probable.

But since this a a triplet objective lens as per APM webpage specs (or even quadruplet if one believes the pdf specs) and the maximum magnification is 75x, the ED glass type is not that much of an issue...

Joachim
 

henry link

Well-known member
Thanks for the link Pete. I had completely forgotten that thread; most of the same questions and answers as this one.

Henry
 

Canip

Well-known member
Part I of II

I got my APM APO 95 yesterday.

Below are my initial impressions. For reference, I had my Swarovski ATX 95 side by side with the APM (even if that is perhaps a bit unfair - after all, the Swaro costs 3 times as much). A further, more in-depth review is planned in the next few weeks.

In contrast to what I expected when looking at the photos on APM’s website and reading the specification, which in the German version specifically states in one place “surface material: rubber armour” (the English version leaves this field blank), the APM comes in a green painted metal finish (Swaro: rubber armoured).
The finish is impeccable; everything looks and feels solid and well designed. The scope weighs 2‘402g with eyepiece and objective caps (APM spec: 2‘330g).

The spec say 554.2mm focus length, which makes this f/5.8 scope.

The mounting foot has two separate screw holes (Swaro: only one hole) for mounting the scope on a tripod, one further back than the other, so the scope can be balanced out to account for eyepieces with different weights. Quite useful.

The standard bag that comes with the APM revealed itself as more useful than I had expected before trying it out.
 

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Canip

Well-known member
Part II of II

The APM comes standard with an APM 25x-75x zoom eyepiece, the connection mechanism and dimensions are the same as for the ATM / ATS Swaro scopes.
In fact, the two zoom eyepieces of my Swaro ATM 80 HD (20x-60, and 25x-50x W) fit well and can easily be brought into focus in the APM.
Using the astro adapter for the Swaro ATM (I got one a few years ago from Jülich Optische Systeme, Bonn, but there must be others on the market), the APM can be used with any standard 1.25” eyepiece (which ones can be brought to focus will need to be checked, the Vixen SSW 83 degree wide field eyepiece worked well).

The APM features a dual-speed focuser (Swaro: single speed). One can be fan of that design or not (I am not), but the focuser works well, smooth and precisely in the APM. Focusing speed is about medium between fast and slow.

Looking into the tube from the objective side, the interior appears well blackened and baffled; there is just one small spot of reflecting metal deep in the tube. The dew shields are marked „Air Spaced Triplet“, and APM claims 95mm effective aperture (I have not measured that yet). The exit pupil looks nice and well defined.

The APM website contains conflicting information about the prism type used. It mentions „Porro“ in one place and „BAK-4 roof prism“ in another. With a roof prism, I would expect to see at least some sort of spike, however faint, on bright light sources; I haven‘t seen any, so I guess that Porro is correct.

The eye relief is stated as „20-18mm“, the Swaro has 20mm (both according to spec, not measured). Eye placement is easy and comfortable (I observe without glasses).

When observing with the standard APM zoom eyepiece, the first thing that becomes apparent is that the field of view is narrower in the APM than in the Swaro.

The specs say
- APM: 1.8 - 0.9 degrees RFOV, or 44 - 68 degrees AFOV
- Swaro: 1.98 - 1.09 RFOV, or 57 - 71 AFOV

The difference is clearly recognizable. Using the 25-50x W eyepiece from the Swaro ATM, the difference becomes less obvious.

Beside the FOV, the following is my immediate impression of the APM optics when using the standard APM zoom eyepiece:

Central sharpness is good, the APM keeps up amazingly well with the Swaro. Since this surprised me somewhat, I briefly checked the two scopes side by side on the USAF 1951. Again, I couldn’t immediately find a big difference between the two. To be rechecked in more detail.

The off-axis sharpness is also good, and not noticeably worse than in the Swaro. Of course, the narrower field of view of the APM needs to be taken in to account here. But again, the APM surprised me positively.

CA correction: I would rate it as good, slightly inferior to the Swaro, but very acceptable in my view. On difficult contrast transition objects, a little bit of color becomes visible, but in the center of the image I had to look for it, further out towards the edge it became a bit more visible. As always, position of the eye pupil can make quite some difference.

Image brightness: Brightness is quite satisfactory. The Swaro appears brighter, and the wider FOV in the Swaro enhances the apparent brightness of the image further, so I am not sure how big the difference really is. When comparing against the smaller Swaro (ATM 80 HD) at a given magnification (40x), brightness of the APM appeared basically the same as in the ATM. To be explored further.

I did not really check for stray-light behaviour, glare, flare, etc. Swiping over a bright light source and circling around with such source just outside the FOV did not reveal any major problems.

In conclusion, the immediate impression of the APM 95mm is good. More to follow later.
fwiw

Canip
 

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jring

Well-known member
Hi,

thanks you very much, Canip - interesting read - looking forward to the next parts. Maybe you can do a star test too with a 5 or 6mm eyepiece?

Joachim
 

DRodrigues

Well-known member
Thanks Canip!... :t:
Nice discover, that is works with the Swaro astro-adapter!... ;)
APM would gain from selling such a type of adapter.
I don't know if a Baader zoom would result in much improvement but there are other options that come to my mind:
- https://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/binoculars/binocular-eyepieces/apm-ultra-flat-field-24mm-eyepiece-65-fov.html
- https://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/eyepieces/more-74-ultra-wide-angle/apm-lunt-eyepieces/apm-high-eyerelief-flat-wide-84-degree-12.5-mm-eyepiece.html
- https://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/eyepieces/more-74-ultra-wide-angle/apm-lunt-eyepieces/apm-xwa-5-mm-110-x-treme-wideangle-eyepiece.html, as other 100-110º 1.25" alternatives and the Baader Morpheus... o:D
If it's really good, we can save on the scope to use on the eps...3:)
 
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DRodrigues

Well-known member
After suggesting APM that they should do an astro-ep adaptor, I was informed that they already have and sell their one astro-ep adapter for this scope https://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/mechanical-accessories/adapters/visual-adapters/apm-spottingscope-adapter-1.25.html
It mentions some eps that reach focus.
...
I asked APM why they didn't mentioned the the XWA9 and 13 at the above link and they told me that these don't reach focus...
It's not limiting since the https://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/eyepieces/more-74-ultra-wide-angle/apm-lunt-eyepieces/apm-high-eyerelief-flat-wide-84-degree-12.5-mm-eyepiece.html should replace nicely the XWA 13. Adding the barlow element https://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/optical-accessories/barlow-lenses/1.25-barlow-lenses/apm-comacorrecting-1-1-4-ed-barlow-element-2.7-x.html it should result on a 1.5x increase (based on it's use on a Nikon HW 12.5), so an equivalent to 8.3mm but it must be tested to see if works well... Cheaper alternative is the use of the barlow element of https://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p53_TS-Optics-Optics-TSB21-1-5x-and-2x-achromatic-Barlow-Lens---1-25-inch---fully-multicoated.html. By the way, you can also reach +- 5mm with this ep, using a https://www.astroshop.eu/barlow-lenses/baader-hyperion-2-25x-zoom-barlow-lens/p,23745 - you might need a https://www.astroshop.eu/extension-tubes/baader-extension-tube-dt-4-verlaengerungshuelse-31-8mm-a%23-1-af-/p,10582#tab_bar_1_select to connect to the ep and pass in the adapter - the supplied adapter with the barlow is larger than 1.25"...
 

Racuuna

Well-known member
I asked APM why they didn't mentioned the the XWA9 and 13 at the above link and they told me that these don't reach focus...
It's not limiting since the https://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/eyepieces/more-74-ultra-wide-angle/apm-lunt-eyepieces/apm-high-eyerelief-flat-wide-84-degree-12.5-mm-eyepiece.html should replace nicely the XWA 13. Adding the barlow element https://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/optical-accessories/barlow-lenses/1.25-barlow-lenses/apm-comacorrecting-1-1-4-ed-barlow-element-2.7-x.html it should result on a 1.5x increase (based on it's use on a Nikon HW 12.5), so an equivalent to 8.3mm but it must be tested to see if works well... Cheaper alternative is the use of the barlow element of https://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p53_TS-Optics-Optics-TSB21-1-5x-and-2x-achromatic-Barlow-Lens---1-25-inch---fully-multicoated.html. By the way, you can also reach +- 5mm with this ep, using a https://www.astroshop.eu/barlow-lenses/baader-hyperion-2-25x-zoom-barlow-lens/p,23745 - you might need a https://www.astroshop.eu/extension-tubes/baader-extension-tube-dt-4-verlaengerungshuelse-31-8mm-a%23-1-af-/p,10582#tab_bar_1_select to connect to the ep and pass in the adapter - the supplied adapter with the barlow is larger than 1.25"...

I bought the xwa 13 mm to try on my meopta s2 but couldnt reach infinity focus. But it is possible to cut of the end of the barrel on the eyepiece a couple of mm.
After doing so my meopta and Nikon edg 85 will reach to infinity. It should be easy to adapt it to spottingscopes since the eyepiece-end has a lot of material leading in to the front glas.
 

Ries

Well-known member
Are these hidden gems for the price, or do they ultimately optimically deliver as expected by the price and (supposedly) China make?
 

PYRTLE

Old Berkshire Boy
Are these hidden gems for the price, or do they ultimately optimically deliver as expected by the price and (supposedly) China make?

No comment for 17 months on the thread should give you your answer.
 

Ries

Well-known member
Might be just because nobody here besides Canip has one? So that'll leave my question unanswered. Sigh. He seemed quite positive though.
 

Canip

Well-known member
I was quite positive, but from my today’s perspective and after longer term use and further comparisons, I would say that the APMs, as suspected by Ries in post #17, „deliver as expected by the price“, and I would not call them a hidden gem.
 

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