My first contact with the Vixen VSD100F3.8 astrograph was at the 2013 Advanced Imaging Conference. It wasn’t like any other telescope I had seen. The focuser alone was an eye-catcher: a huge, nonrotating helical focuser as wide as the telescope itself. It was built like this to hold massive amounts of weight.
The president of the U.S. distributor for Vixen products, Brian Deis, asked if I’d be interested in trying out a production model the company scheduled for release in early 2014. I immediately pictured this 4-inch telescope, designed to cover the area of an old medium-format camera (6 by 4.5 centimeters), attached to my CCD camera. What would the results be like?