Ultima 100 Angled viewing 100mm spotting scope, 22-66x zoom

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For very long distance or very low light observing, nothing beats a very large aperture spotting scope for making distant or dim birds more visible. For large aperture value, nothing beats the 100mm aperture Celestron Ultima 100. For a price less than that of most 80mm scopes, this economical angled viewing 100mm scope makes a big aperture spotting scope affordable for just about everyone.

Its large 100mm (4”) objective lens gathers almost three times as much light as a 60mm scope, and over 56% more than an 80mm. The resolution is two-thirds higher than a 60mm scope and 25% higher than an 80mm, as well. This extra brightness and resolution can give you the optical edge you need to make a positive ID in poor conditions, such as in the low light of early mornings or under heavily overcast winter skies, or when a bird is far away enough so that you’re not even sure if it’s a bird at all. With such a large aperture, the scope is substantial in size and weight, but at only 4.5 lbs and a length of 19”, it is not as much of a handful as you might imagine. Any good photo tripod should be sturdy enough to hold it with minimal vibration, but be prepared to upgrade if your existing tripod is a little on the shaky side.

This is not a general purpose spotting scope, suitable for all applications. For the very long distance/very low light birder on a tight budget, however, the 100mm Ultima gives you more optical performance than you might ever have thought your budget would be able to afford. Compared to the cost of other 100mm spotting scopes, it is nothing short of a bargain.

Optical features of this scope . . .

  • 100mm objective lens gathers over 278% more light than a 60mm scope for superior low light performance.

  • The crown and flint glass optics are multicoated for good light transmission.

  • The standard equipment 22-66x multicoated zoom eyepiece has a soft rolldown rubber eyecup for eyeglass use. The eye relief is specified at a generous 18mm at 22x. While this is technically correct, the actual usable eye relief of this and all other spotting scopes typically measures a mm or two less due to the recessed location of the eyepiece. There will be some minor vignetting of the field for eyeglass wearers at 22x. The specifications to the right are for the zoom set at 22x. At 66x, the field is 48’ at 1000 yards.

  • The scope close focuses down to 33’. Through the scope, looking at a bird at that distance at 22x would effectively be the same as looking with your unaided eye from a distance of only 1’ 8”.
Mechanical features of this scope . . .
  • The scope’s long focusing knob is located at the top right front of the prism housing to allow precise focusing with either hand, even while wearing gloves or mittens. It is semi-recessed to resist snagging on clothing or carrying case and is grooved for a sure grip. Focusing is quite brisk compared to most scopes, with less than five turns of the focus knob needed to move from one end of the focus range to the other.

  • The Ultima 100’s 45° viewing angle is generally more comfortable than a straight-through model for watching treetop activity or for extended observing from a blind or back porch. It is also more convenient for observing couples of widely differing heights who must share a single scope, as there’s little need to constantly raise and lower the tripod to a comfortable height for each observer. If you are tall, you won’t have to crouch over to see through the Ultima 100, as you would a straight-through scope. This can save you from the possibility of a literal pain in the neck.

  • A sighting tube built into the left side of the body allows fast centering of the scope on possible subjects.

  • The scope mounts on any photo tripod having a standard 1/4”-20 thread mounting bolt.

  • A water-shedding stay-on soft case is standard equipment. The case has zippered fold-back flaps so you can use the scope on a tripod while it is still in the case. The case has an adjustable length shoulder strap for carrying.

  • A snap-in camera-type lens cover protects the objective lens.

  • For photography, removing the soft rubber eyecup from the eyepiece exposes standard photographic T-threads. You can attach a 35mm camera body to the scope simply by threading an optional inexpensive T-ring onto the eyepiece and connecting your camera body to the T-ring. No separate camera adapter is needed. The scope becomes a 540mm telephoto lens with a fast f/5.4 focal ratio when you attach a camera.

  • A limited lifetime warranty is standard.
Magnification:
Magnification is the ability of a telescope to make a small, distant object large enough to examine in detail. If you look at the Moon (250,000 miles away) with a 125 power (125x) telescope, it's essentially the same as looking at it with your bare eyes from 2000 miles away (250,000 ÷ 125 = 2000). The same telescope used terrestrially will make an object one mile away appear to be only 42 feet away (5280 feet ÷ 125 = 42).
The magnification of a telescope is determined by dividing the focal length of the telescope (usually in millimeters) by the focal length of the eyepiece used (again, usually in millimeters; but in all cases by the same unit of measurement used for the telescope focal length). For example, a 2000mm focal length telescope and a 10mm focal length eyepiece will give you a magnification of 200 power (2000 ÷ 10 = 200). The same 2000mm telescope with a 20mm eyepiece will give you 100x (2000 ÷ 20 = 100).
22x-66x
Field of view 1000 yards:
105' @ 22x
Near Focus:
27'
Eye Relief:
Eye relief is the distance from the last surface of the eye lens of an eyepiece to the plane behind the eyepiece where all the light rays of the exit pupil come to a focus and the circular image is formed, sometimes called the “Ramsden Disk.” This is where your eye should be positioned to see the full field of view of the eyepiece. If you must wear glasses because of astigmatism, you’ll usually need at least 15mm of eye relief or longer if you want to see the full field of view with your glasses on.

A note on our eye relief figures: Quite often, our eye relief figures will differ from those of the manufacturer. This is because we measure the “usable” eye relief, while the manufacturers specify their usually-longer (but technically correct) “designed” eye relief.

The eye lens of the eyepiece is normally recessed below the rubber eyeguard or rubber rim of the eyepiece to keep the lens from being scratched during use. An eyepiece might have a “designed” eye relief of 15mm (and the eye relief will truly measure 15mm from the eye lens to where the image forms). However, if the eye lens is recessed 3mm below the eye guard, the Ramsden Disk forms only 12mm above the eyepiece body (the 15mm “designed” eye relief, less the 3mm of eye relief made unusable by having the eye lens recessed into the body of the eyepiece). This “usable” eye relief of 12mm (measured from the rolled-down eyeguard – the closest point you can get your eye to the eye lens – to where the image forms) is the eye relief figure we would measure and list in this website.

Why is it important to list the “usable” eye relief? For those people who don’t wear eyeglasses while observing, a few mm difference between the eye relief they expect from the manufacturer’s literature and the shorter eye relief they actually get in real life doesn’t mean a lot. They can simply move a little closer to the eyepiece to see the full field, and never realize that the eye relief is a little shorter than they expected. However, some people must wear eyeglasses while observing, because of severe astigmatism. These observers can’t move closer to the eyepiece if the eye relief is shorter than expected because their glasses get in the way. For these people, the real life “usable” eye relief is more important than the technically correct but sometimes not fully usable “designed” eye relief. We measure and list the actual usable eye relief so that people in the real world can pick the eyepieces that will work best for them.

18mm @ 22x
Exit Pupil:
The circular image or beam of light formed by the eyepiece of a telescope. To take full advantage of a scope's light-gathering capacity, the diameter of an eyepiece exit pupil should be no larger than the 7mm diameter of your eye's dark-adapted pupil, so that all of the light collected by the telescope enters your eye. (The eyepiece exit pupil diameter is found by dividing the eyepiece focal length by the telescope focal ratio.) Your eye's ability to dilate declines with increasing age (to a dark-adapted pupil of about 5mm by age 50 or so). For those in this age group, eyepieces with exit pupils larger than their eyes can dilate to simply waste their telescope's light-gathering capacity, as some of the scope's light will fall on their iris instead of entering their eye.
4.55mm @ 22x
Twilight Factor:
A number used to compare the effectiveness of binoculars or spotting scopes used in low light. The twilight factor is found by multiplying the size of the objective lens (in mm) by the magnification and then finding the square root of that result. The larger the twilight factor, the more detail you can see in low light. A twilight factor of 17 or better if usually required for reasonable low light use.
46.9 @ 22x
Aperture:
This is the diameter of the light-gathering main mirror or objective lens of a telescope. In general, the larger the aperture, the better the resolution and the fainter the objects you can see.
100mm
Length:
19"
Armored:
A binocular or spotting scope whose body is clad in rubber or polyurethane armor is said to be armored. Armor can be applied for looks, a better grip, noise-proofing, etc. An armored body does not guarantee that a binocular or spotting scope is waterproof, although most waterproof optics are armored.
Partial
Waterproof:
Yes
Photographic Focal Length:
The effective focal length of a spotting scope/camera adapter combination when the scope is used as a telephoto lens. The photographic focal length divided by 50 will give you the magnification of the combination compared to your standard camera lens.
540mm
Photographic Focal Ratio:
The photographic “speed” of a spotting scope/camera adapter combination when used for photography. The smaller the “f/ratio,” the faster the exposure (to capture birds in motion), or the dimmer the light level in which you can successfully shoot.
f/5.4
Weight:
The weight of this product.
4.5 lbs.
Warranty:
Limited Lifetime
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Celestron - Ultima 100 Angled viewing 100mm spotting scope, 22-66x zoom

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For very long distance or very low light observing, nothing beats a very large aperture spotting scope for making distant or dim birds more visible. For large aperture value, nothing beats the 100mm Celestron Ultima 100 . . .





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