Takahashi FSQ-85EDX "Baby Q" 3.35" F/5.3 dual ED/four element design


Availability: More on the way

This new Takahashi FSQ-85ED apochromatic quadruplet (the "Baby Q") is the ultimate portable no-compromise photo/visual refractor under 102mm in aperture . . .
Our Product #: FSQ85
Takahashi Product #: TQE08541

Product Description

The new Takahashi FSQ-85ED (the "Baby Q") apochromatic ED quadruplet is a clear leader in the ranks of relatively small aperture refractors. Its four-element double ED element modified Petzval optical system has been optimized for imaging as well as visual applications. It is measurably the best no-compromise portable photo-visual refractor under 102mm in aperture that Takahashi has ever built, and they've built a lot of very good small scopes over the years.

The FSQ-85ED is a 3.35" aperture f/5.3 (450mm focal length) four-lens photo/visual system using two ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements. Based on the classic two-doublet Petzval design, the FSQ-85ED takes full advantage of the latest exotic glass types to produce levels of correction for coma, astigmatism, field curvature, secondary spectrum, spherical aberration, and spherochromatism that are unsurpassed - even better than their legendary fluorite scopes.

This Telescope's Optical System . . .

  • Apochromatic modified Petzval refractor optical system: 3.35" aperture f/5.3 (450mm focal length) four-lens fully-multicoated system using two ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements. The modified Petzval design uses a true apochromatic doublet objective lens with an ED element to gather the light. For most telescope manufacturers, this would be enough. But Takahashi goes a step further to perfect your observing and imaging experience. There is a second widely air-spaced ED doublet buried deep within the telescope body. This second doublet optimizes the optical wavefront from the objective lens to eliminate any residual astigmatism. It also acts as a field flattener for wide field astrophotography. The result is a very wide and flat field with high contrast images that are without any hint of lateral color. Color correction has been extended to 1000nm, well into the infrared, to produce non-bloated photographic star images

  • Large Image Circle: At prime focus the 44mm image circle covers a huge area of the sky measuring 5.6° in diameter, over 24 square degrees of sky. The large image circle will fully cover any 35mm negative or 35mm equivalent CCD chip (a 35mm negative and the largest currently available SBIG Research Series chip measure only 44mm across their diagonals). Light fall-off at the edges of the field is minor and easily compensated for in a CCD image by a simple flat field.

  • Long Back Focus: The very generous back focus of 200mm allows the user to attach a variety of imaging packages, binoviewers, 2" star diagonals, and many other visual devices. The 200mm back focus has been designed to handle the ever-larger image trains of CCD imaging experts - electric focusers or temperature compensated focusers, flip mirror systems, filter wheels, adaptive optics systems, etc.

This Telescope's Mechanical System . . .

  • Compact Optical Tube: The all-aluminum 95mm diameter scope body is finished in ivory, with Takahashi green and black trim, and is very solidly built. The tube length of only 12.7" with the dew shield retracted and no visual accessories attached makes the "Baby Q" highly airline-transportable. The FSQ-85ED uses a special optional #85TH tube holder with offset plate designed specifically to mount this scope on an equatorial mount and balance it properly.

  • Focuser: The focuser is an 80mm (3.15") rack-and-pinion design whose drawtube terminates in a 2" eyepiece/accessory holder. A 1.25" compression ring eyepiece/star diagonal adapter fits into the extension tube to hold 1.25" accessories and is held in place by the extension tube's thumbscrews. The scope should reach visual focus with most 2" star diagonals. Straight-through viewing and 1.25" diagonal use will require adding optional eyepiece extension tube #TET0002, at $69.95. The focuser has a silky-smooth motion and oversize knobs that make it easy to achieve sharp focus, even at very high powers. The right focuser knob has a smaller separate concentric knob that controls a 10:1 ratio Micro Edge fine focuser for critical high magnification and photographic focusing.

  • Camera angle adjuster: The focuser includes a built-in camera angle adjuster/rotator that will carry a 5kg (11 lb.) load to handle the weight of the new large chip CCD cameras and their associated accessories. The camera angle rotation is controlled by a large hand-tighten knob on the top of the focuser drawtube.

  • Finderscope: No finderscope is supplied. There is a flat boss on the upper left side of the focuser that will accept an optional Takahashi finder bracket and finderscope. An optional 6 x 30mm Takahashi finderscope is shown in the feature images below.

  • Dew shield: The optical tube has a retractable self-storing dew shield. A thumbscrew locks the dew shield in place, either when extended or when retracted. The dew shield serves the dual purpose of retarding the formation of dew during long observing sessions and improving the photo/visual contrast, much as a camera lens shade does.

Tech Details

Aperture 3.35"
Focal Length 450mm
Focal Ratio f/5.3
Highest Useful Magnification 180x
Weight 8.8 lbs.
Resolution 1.36 arc seconds
Telescope Type Refractor
Visual Limiting Magnitude 12.1
Warranty 5 years


Review by:
Fantastic choice if you are looking for the best in color correction and resolution for astrophotography or visual use. Fast scope will collect a lot of photons quickly. Small enough to travel with but capable as primary scope. (Posted on 11/6/2018)
Review by:
I have owned many scopes in the past including a few astrophysics but have finally setteled on my forever scope- the Takahashi FSQ-85ED. This scope is fantastic! Flat fields for my ccd and cmos cameras, portable (8 lbs) allowing for use with smaller mounts and wide field views. The quality of the optics are outstanding (see Astrobin.com) for a few examples that were obtained by excellent astrophotographers with this scope. The quality of construction that went into this scope is impressive. This scope will not disappoint. (Posted on 10/30/2018)
Review by:
I bought this scope because I wanted the top of the line for imaging. Little did I know it could also do really well for visual too. I use it with a Sony ICX-694 sensor for narrow band imaging. I have also used it with a Kodak KAF-8300. Both chips work well with this scope without any flattener.

I believe it will also do well with a full sized DSLR or 16803 class chip as well from speaking to others who use a 16803 CCD. However you will likely want the flattener for it. You will also want to replace the stock focuser for sure. The Moonlite Night Crawler is a great option for this scope as is the Feathertouch FTF3015B-A. I use FT on mine. I could probably go with the stock focuser but I had read about focuser sag with heavier CCD's and I didn't want to take the chance. The one weakness in this scope really is the focuser.

I decided one day to try the FSQ-85 for visual because I had my CCD off it and on another scope. I was very pleasantly surprised at how well the 85 did. Saturn showed really amazing gradations in color and Jupiter showed well in terms of the bands and color of each. And as expected wide field was really good.

This is a scope that will do really well on a CGEM sized mount like the CGX or Skywatcher EQ6-R. So much so that the mount won't even notice that the scope is there.

If you are looking for a really top end narrow band or wide field imaging scope, this is the scope for you. (Posted on 10/26/2018)
Review by:
I have been a visual observer since 1961. OK, there are some childhood years included in that stretch but still, I'm not new at this. For the past 30 years, I have favored astrographs for visual use. I know; spare me the focal length ridicule and the dismissives about astrographs being "just a camera."

You know what astrographs do? They give you a large FLAT field. You don't like field curvature? Forget about it. You don't like pinhole views on the sky? Wave that away. You want hyper-magnification because you think you have a Hubble on your tripod? Sorry, you are mistaken. In other words, your admonishments are water off a duck's back. Rain on me all you want. I like astrographs for visual use!

Astrographs give you a short, fat tube that fits many places. Like the way a Takahashi FSQ-85ED tis in a small backpack that, say, and 80/480 doesn't quite. How do I know? I have both of them, and a plethora of eyepieces to wrestle them into submission. Nothing presents the sky like a Takahashi, and I don't just say that about their refractors. I have been using an Epsilon 160mm hyperbolic newtonian astrograph as my primary visual instrument for the past 30 years. It's an f/3.3 bucket for crying' out loud, with a 39% obstruction, and still can show me what is seemingly a boulder the size of your shoe on the moon. Imagine what happens when you look through an immaculately-ground-and-assembled chain of refractor optics from a company that can make an f/3.3 hyperbolic mirror look look like an IMAX view of the heavens?

The Takahashi FSQ-85ED quad lens telescope will give you the big-picture view of the sky above you, and with its compatible extenders, give you the focal length for practical high magnification. You will be surprised how much subtlety in the night sky is revealed by Takahashi's "Baby Q", while at the same time appreciating the grand visual context Baby Q affords you for grokking the grandeur of the open sky above you. It's just about perfect. And so is my FSQ 106ED.

FSQ-85ED is my grab-and-go scope, even if I'm going 10,000 miles. Magnificent.

Phil (Posted on 10/23/2018)
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