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Meade 5000 vs. Agena SWA

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#1 drbyyz

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:12 AM

Trying to decide on which 2" eyepiece to buy at 32mm...A Meade 5000 series plossl(Used, but never "used" for $65) or an Agena SWA(new for $80). I have a 2" 28mm ES on it's way so I'm just looking for a budget EP for slightly lower magnifications without committing to the price of higher quality one at that focal length quite yet.

The two obvious differences I can see are price (Meade wins by $15) and FOV (Agena wins by 10*). Since the money isn't much I'm leaning towards the larger FOV.

Both should perform fine in my scope at f/10, however I do intend on purchasing a reducer to f/6.3 at some point...will either eyepiece's performance deteriorate significantly with that reduction?

Any input from users of either or both eyepieces would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

#2 REC

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:20 AM

FYI....I did pick up a focal reducer for mine, but found out it did not work to well with mu 2" wider EP's. It worked ok for my 1.25mm EP's 26mm and below. If you already have a 28mm SWA, I would look for something in the 34-40mm range for low power wide view.

Good luck!

Bob

#3 drbyyz

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:45 AM

If you already have a 28mm SWA, I would look for something in the 34-40mm range for low power wide view.


Agena does have a 38mm SWA...guess I'll add that to the list of options as well. Might not be a bad idea, then if I do decide to buy a high end SWA in the 30s I can fill in the 32-34mm range.

#4 rflinn68

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 12:46 PM

I cannot reach focus with my Celestron f/6.3 reducer with my 2" diagonal, I run out of travel. I dont know which diagonal you have so it may work for you. I have the Meade Series 5000 refractor style with an adapter. I plan to get the Meade 56mm plossl for widest-field views from my SCT's. The 32mm plossl wont show you as much as your 28mm ES eyepiece.

#5 drbyyz

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 01:41 PM

I cannot reach focus with my Celestron f/6.3 reducer with my 2" diagonal, I run out of travel. I dont know which diagonal you have so it may work for you. I have the Meade Series 5000 refractor style with an adapter. I plan to get the Meade 56mm plossl for widest-field views from my SCT's. The 32mm plossl wont show you as much as your 28mm ES eyepiece.


Good to know, I'm definitely going to try out the reducer on my scope before I buy as I've heard some people swear by them and some seem to hate/rarely use them. So I'll see. And I'm definitely leaning more towards the 38mm now...I don't have anything down around 50x and that will put me right in that area with a true FOV of around 1.3 degrees. And it'll be less likely to be passed over in favor of the 28mm ES.

#6 rflinn68

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 12:37 PM

I cannot reach focus with my Celestron f/6.3 reducer with my 2" diagonal, I run out of travel. I dont know which diagonal you have so it may work for you. I have the Meade Series 5000 refractor style with an adapter. I plan to get the Meade 56mm plossl for widest-field views from my SCT's. The 32mm plossl wont show you as much as your 28mm ES eyepiece.


Good to know, I'm definitely going to try out the reducer on my scope before I buy as I've heard some people swear by them and some seem to hate/rarely use them. So I'll see. And I'm definitely leaning more towards the 38mm now...I don't have anything down around 50x and that will put me right in that area with a true FOV of around 1.3 degrees. And it'll be less likely to be passed over in favor of the 28mm ES.


I love the flatter field I get with the reducer/corrector and I'm having 2nd thoughts. I probably should try to get a shorter SCT style diagonal so I can use the 2" eyepieces I already have and get a flatter star field. Its very close to reaching focus now so I'm sure the shorter diagonal that threads on will work for me.

#7 drbyyz

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 10:10 AM

Decided to go with the 38mm Agena and got a little first light with it last night. First impression...very nice. This is a heavy, very long eyepiece that I was worried might be a little large for my scope, but no issues, didn't really need to make any adjustments switching back and forth between this and much smaller EPs. Very comfortable view, eyecup puts my eye at the perfect position. Wide field of view is very nice and makes this a great "finder" eyepiece as starhopping is very easy using this guy and SkySafari on horizontal flip. My only complaint really comes from my sky and not this eyepiece, the background isn't super dark so I didn't use this one much for actual observing quite yet. This was caused by the skyglow being much worse than usual in my backyard last night(set up right after the SuperBowl and my neighborhood was lit up like a lantern with parties, etc.).

Very happy with my purchase so far, can't wait to give this guy a try in darker sky conditions.

#8 Glen A W

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 12:42 PM

I have both eyepieces you mention. The Meade 32 is my favourite, but only because of the sky background. The 38 makes it pretty bright in all my scopes. I use the 38 as the standard in my Vixen 260 and the 32 in my CG-10 Newt. Both are great buys. GW

#9 Scanning4Comets

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 03:33 PM

Decided to go with the 38mm Agena and got a little first light with it last night. First impression...very nice. This is a heavy, very long eyepiece that I was worried might be a little large for my scope, but no issues, didn't really need to make any adjustments switching back and forth between this and much smaller EPs. Very comfortable view, eyecup puts my eye at the perfect position. Wide field of view is very nice and makes this a great "finder" eyepiece as starhopping is very easy using this guy and SkySafari on horizontal flip. My only complaint really comes from my sky and not this eyepiece, the background isn't super dark so I didn't use this one much for actual observing quite yet. This was caused by the skyglow being much worse than usual in my backyard last night(set up right after the SuperBowl and my neighborhood was lit up like a lantern with parties, etc.).

Very happy with my purchase so far, can't wait to give this guy a try in darker sky conditions.


I've owned a 28mm Meade 5000 SWA, 35mm ES 68 and Orion 38mm Q70 eyepieces. There is a tradeoff with both types. The Series 5000 has nice correction in fast scopes at the expense of very slight eye placement issues. You need to keep your head still or very minor kidney beans happen. Quite minor though and nothing to quibble about.

With the 38mm Orion Q70, which is the same as the Agena 38mm SWA, 26mm SWA and 32mm SWA, as well as others, I found that it has excellent eye placement with zero kidney beaning at the expense of not so good edge correction.

I prefer the latter as it serves well as a finder eyepiece and works well with O-III and Ultrablock filters.

Cheers,






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