My first and main choice for digiscoping and nature viewing is the Olivon T-84EDO.
This scope is a serious piece of optical equipment, designed for people who are serious about their hobby and want the best optics available. In terms of optical quality, it is comparable with any of the high-end spotting scopes from the top brands on the market - delivering outstanding colour rendition, image detail and excellent low light level performance, which can only be appreciated by using the scope.
This is now Olivon's flagship model, so it had to be good in order to supercede the superb T80/T90 ED scopes, it was obvious from the moment I unpacked it that some serious time, energy and thought had gone in to its development. At an RRP of £1100, you would expect a very high specification scope, and that's exactly what you get; extremely high quality ED glass and full multi coated optics encased in a very tough, rugged, armored shell which is both waterproof and nitrogen filled to prevent fogging.
I love the ergonomic lines of this scope and subtle use of colour, it's very tactile with a quality feel. Like other high end brands It's no lightweight, but it is reassuringly solid.
The large focus wheel is very smooth and responsive,and great in winter conditions if you are wearing gloves.
Olivon have again shown their commitment to digiscoping with the T84-EDO, it can easily be connected to the Olivon universal camera adapter by simply un-screwing the eye-relief cap and attaching an adapter ring in it's place, the UDCA then slots over the top. There is also a dedicated range of adapters currently under development specifically designed for this scope which is exciting - check back soon for more details.
Click here to read learn more about the Olivon T-84 EDO
Other scopes I own and use
I also use Olivon T90/T90ED and Olivon T-64.
The Olivon T90 and T90ED are almost identical in every way, both have a 90mm objective lens, their optics are fully multi-coated, both have Bak4 prisms, they are both waterproof and nitrogen filled to prevent fogging and they both give fantastic sharp bright images. The T90 and T90ED are supplied with a 22-68x zoom lens, although for digiscoping, keeping it at its widest setting 22x is recommended.
The only difference, and it's a big one, is the T90ED version uses high-quality optical lenses that have a high content of fluorite, which reduces deviation in images. These special lenses are called ED (extra-low dispersion) lenses, and are mainly used in powerful telescopes. This model not only gives super clear and crisp images, but it also provides extraordinarily sharp resolutions. The T90ED version retails at around £650, whilst the T90 retails around £299.
Both are excellent scopes and are perfectly suited for digiscoping, with a range of Olivon digiscope adapters available. Personally I would always choose the ED version, but having said that, a lot of the pictures in this site have been taken on the Olivon T90 standard version. If your budget can't stretch to an ED scope, the Olivon T90 can still deliver the digiscoping goods.
Click here to view a digiscope comparison test between the Olivon T90 and T90ED spotting scopes.
Click here to view a Olivon T90 and T90ED 22x-68x zoom test
The Olivon T-64
I've always believed that digiscoping should be available to everyone who wants to do it and not just limited to equipment with very heavy price tags - price tags that are often out of reach for a lot us.
Olivon have again produced another excellent, high quality spotting scope with the T64 - perfectly suited for digiscoping and ready to accept Olivon digiscope adapters at a price that will appeal to the main stream digiscoper.
Asthetically, the new T64 looks fantastic, very compact, and stylish, looking like a scope that should have set you back a lot more than it has. It's also very tough with a rubber coated body, nitrogen filled and fully waterproof - so basically it will take the worst of the British weather no problem and still deliver the goods.The scope is nice and light weight, but still has a quality feel, making it great for portability.
Optically, for a scope that retails at around £200, the results are excellent, BAK4 -prism and full multicoating plus broad band green coating result in a really sharp, punchy image with plenty of contrast.
Now for the really important bit - can it digiscope?
The answer is yes, and in fact it digiscopes very well, Olivon have always supported the digiscoper, making their scopes ready to accept Olivon digiscoping adapters straight from the box, a screw thread on the body surrounding the eyepiece is ready for a Olivon universal or standard digiscope adapter depending on what kind of camera you use.
I tried both adapters on the scope and they fitted perfectly and importantly - quickly, the whole set up is very neat, tidy and compact - not at all bulky and gives you a good solid connection to the scope.
What I first liked about the T64 was the 16x zoom on the eyepiece- it's a nice wider angle magnification which makes finding your subject matter through the scope (easier said than done) a lot easier than something like a 22x zoom.
Read more and see some sample digiscoped images using the Olivon T-64 here
My only advise on buying a scope, especially when digiscoping is choose a scope with a large objective lens, light is extremely important when trying to achieve high shutter speeds. 80mm - 90mm seem to be the popular choice. High resolution (ED) models do improve the image, but non ED models can offer excellent results.
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