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Bresser Spezial Saturn 20x60 - mini review

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#1 Lethe

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Posted 28 December 2008 - 01:28 AM

Hi all,

Just recently joined here. Great site with lots of information. Luckily I have already an insight to binoculars for astronomy (after reading up about binoculars when I (stupidly) bought a 25-125x80 zoom) and decided to get a 'proper' pair.

Living in a high light pollution city, and also having to view through my window a lot of the time, I opted for the Bresser Spezial Saturn 20x60:

http://www.bresserop...ails.php?id=411

So far, I cannot say enough about these - super quality. They are light (I can hand hold for a few minutes with these), and using the Oberwerk collimation page, found these binoculars have no (or noticeable) problems.

Another thing is I have wonky eyes - short sighted, with mild astigmatism in the left (so that eye always seems to be out of focus even though it isn't). I don't wear glasses, as I found years ago they actually made my eyes get worse, and a stronger pair each year was required. I since trained myself not to wear them, and now my eyes remain in the same state - so even top ££££ quality binoculars wouldn't do much for me, really.

Of course, as these things go, as soon as I received the binoculars, my area was overcast for 6 days and nights, so I only got to use them over the last 3 days.

So far:

Venus - looks like a searchlight about 2 miles away.
Saturn - semi orange/cream disc, and with averted vision (after looking for a few minutes), one tiny pinprick at about 4 o'clock has to be Titan.
M41 & M42 both found and can be recognised (considering the light pollution here).
Jupiter - sets very late now, just after the Sun (and only visible from then on), so all I can see here is a giant red disc (I expect the moons will be easily visible when the chance arises).
Mercury!!! - My first time seeing this planet - again sets just after the sun and appears just after the sun has set, and shows as a nice vivid large red star - I was well pleased to see this, and I will be able to see it again over the next few nights now I know where to look.

So, all in all, I am well pleased with these binoculars - super quality, light collection is pretty good, and overall just do what I what them to do.

Nick

#2 Mark9473

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Posted 28 December 2008 - 05:09 PM

Thanks for the report Nick, and welcme to the forum. I don't think we've read about this model yet.
Your local conditions must not be too bad if you caught Jupiter and Mercury. I've missed them these past evenings, though I did get a glimpse of Mercury a few days ago by aiming my telescope for the Sun in mid day, and waiting the appropriate time for Mercury to enter the same field.

#3 Lethe

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Posted 29 December 2008 - 12:53 AM

Your local conditions must not be too bad if you caught Jupiter and Mercury.


Well, I think its down to luck of my flat being in the right time at the right place with a view between buildings of exactly the right area of sky where Jupiter and Mercury are setting right now.

I saw them again yesterday - very impressed.

Here is a ascii type thing of where they appear - the blocks are tower block flats:

                       ________
 o                     |          |
         o             |          |          ________
                   o   |          |          |          |
     .                 |          |   o      |          | 
             .         |          |          |          |
                       |          |          |          |
______         .   |          |          |          |
         |             |          |          |          |
         |             |          |          |          |
         |             |          |          |          |
         |             |          |          |          |
         |             |          |          |          |


But I did notice last night that Mercury appears to be 'getting higher', or at least seems to set a lot slower - I guess this is due to it's orbit around the Sun.

Nick

#4 Mark9473

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Posted 29 December 2008 - 04:48 AM

You have very good ascii typing skills ;)

#5 Man in a Tub

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 04:10 AM

Welcome to Cloudy Nights, Lethe

Glad to hear that you have seen Mercury. I've never seen it! And it was kind of bothering me a few days ago. I've spent some time tracking Uranus and Neptune since early September, maybe earlier.

Just after sunset on Christmas night, I could see both Venus and Neptune in the same FOV of my Oberwerk 15x60s and Garrett Optical Signature 15x70s. Neptune was almost washed out by Venus!

Your binoculars look fine to me. When I ordered my Oberwerk 15x60s in late April, I was mildly tempted by Oberwerk's 20x60 model, and although the weight of all Oberwerk 60mm binoculars is the same, I didn't think I could possibly hand hold a 20x binocular. The 2.6 pound weight is approximately the same as yours.

Due to my work shift and the risk of being out on the sidewalk past midnight, I do a lot of observing from the window in my bathroom (2 feet x 1.5 feet opening) with a SW to WNW view away from the downtown and residential area light pollution. It would be all the way to the NW, except the showerhead is in the way! Hence my user name.

This is an extraordinary site. I just keep finding so much here and the members will give you their best shot when trying to help.

Happy New Year!

#6 Lethe

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 08:22 AM

Thanks for reply. Having used these now for a few days, I am really impressed indeed - top notch binos.

As to Neptune, I have looked for this before the moon came out in the location of Venus (as per Stellarium mappings), but never really found it.

Does it look like a planet disc in binoculars, or just a star point? I am not sure if I did see it only to not realise it... then again, I guess you need a good dark night, and light pollution here is terrible, so perhaps it isn't possible to see.

EDIT: Forgot. I missed Mercury last night - as the Moon became visible Jupiter appeared, but just below that was a layer of dark cloud, so Mercury hid her face - but today is CLEAR again, so sighting #3 is on the cards tonight!

Nick

#7 planet-beaver

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 11:25 AM

Neptune would look like a star at 20 power.

#8 Lethe

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 01:04 PM

Well, tonight was spectacular - The moon, Venus like a search light, Jupiter and Mercury like red daemons - excellent.

I looked for Neptune, and located 45 cap, 44 cap and 42 cap, but anything else was just an orange background glow - due to partly the sun just setting and mostly to bloody street lights :(

But these binoculars are super :)

Nick

#9 Man in a Tub

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 11:19 PM

Assuming you have a PC, I would like to recommend that you complement Stellarium with at least Han Kleijn's planetarium program Hallo Northern Sky, hnsky. This freeware program's deepsky help file is an immense resource. It contains observing notes and descriptions from two very experienced astronomers, Steve Coe and Steve Gottlieb, who are also CN members. When a deep sky object (DSO) is a suitable target for binoculars, they let you know. And there's a lot more than that! Please also remember that Stellarium is stil in development. The only information you can get from it is in the upper left display.

http://www.hnsky.org/software.htm

Of course, there are many other programs. But it is this program that has been a part of my education and experience.

Regards,


Todd

#10 Lethe

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 04:05 AM

Assuming you have a PC, I would like to recommend that you complement Stellarium with at least Han Kleijn's planetarium program Hallo Northern Sky, hnsky. This freeware program's deepsky help file is an immense resource. It contains observing notes and descriptions from two very experienced astronomers, Steve Coe and Steve Gottlieb, who are also CN members. When a deep sky object (DSO) is a suitable target for binoculars, they let you know. And there's a lot more than that! Please also remember that Stellarium is stil in development. The only information you can get from it is in the upper left display.

http://www.hnsky.org/software.htm

Of course, there are many other programs. But it is this program that has been a part of my education and experience.

Regards,


Todd


Yes, I have used Stellarium for years - in fact, in the early days I fixed a few bugs.

I am aware of HNSKY, but alas, like a lot of astro software, is MS Windows only - I am a GNU/Linux guy, and haven't had a MS box at home for 6 years or so (I detest MS products).

Thanks anyway.

EDIT: I have just found this - looks pretty interesting...
http://www.clearskyi...phem/index.html

Nick

#11 Man in a Tub

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 06:07 AM

I am not a computer expert or programmer. I try to maintain a dispassionate attitude about operating systems or platforms, etc. I only want, if I can get it and it is within my budget, serviceable tools for my hobby. I use several planetarium programs which I believe complement one another.

Well, the fog came back tonight so I couldn't do any observing when I got home from work. But last night was phenomenal! I was seeing star clusters in unprecedented and detailed ways.

I look forward to your posts and comments.

Best Regards,

Todd

#12 Lethe

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 12:54 PM

Well, I struggled a bit to build XEphem, as it is has a hard coded 32 bit lib build, and I run a true full x86_64 bit system (Slamd64).

But I got there in the end with a few hacks. This application is superb and deserves a new post in the 'computer/software' forum (which I will do in due course).

Nick

#13 panek

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 06:18 PM

I would to buy this model of Bresser binocular. Have you done a test of real aperture of your binocular ? Something like this : http://www.cloudynig...l/fpart/1/vc/1 ?

#14 Man in a Tub

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 10:11 PM

Lethe (Nick) has not posted since early February 2009.






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